It must be the Mercury/Venus conjunction in Scorpio, creeping up on my ascendant. Tales of the underworld unwind. I’ve been following with some interest a simmering feud between rival motorcycle gangs, The Hells Angels and The Vagos. Just over a week ago, the head of the Hells Angels in San Jose, Jeffery “Jethro” Pettigrew was gunned down in a casino in Reno (hey that rhymes) allegedly by a member of the rival Vagos gang. According to my buddy James, who used to be a detective in the Central Valley, they’ve got some kind of turf war going on for Meth distribution.
Last weekend at Pettigrew’s funeral in San Jose, a fight broke out and there was another fatal shooting. This time it was Angel on Angel and the dead Angel was “Steve Tausan.” Tausan was the Angel’s enforcer. A former marine and professional boxer, he was a certifiable badass. I went to high school with Steve Tausan. I knew him since junior high and even trained with him in P.A.L. boxing. Even back then, he was one, tough, little dude. In high school, he was a boxing champ. I wan’t close with him, though we talked. What’s fascinating is that he was never a bully. He was a edgy, but not a bully (though my high school buddy Kurt said he saw him drop kick a cat during PE once) and by the way, no one fucked with Steve Tausan.
When I first read about his death, his name rang a bell and then I put it together. I found his picture and sure enough, it was him. Beneath the long main and beard, I recognized those eyes. Steve Tausan always looked just a tad crazy. Not mean and maniacal, but crazy, like he was up for anything. The eyes got steelier over time, but they are unmistakable.
Apparently he was killed by another Angel, Stephen Ruiz and now the SJPD cannot find Ruiz for questioning. I doubt that they ever will. The wheels of justice move with incredible speed and efficiency in the underworld, unfettered by any process that’s due.
The quote at the top of the page comes from a movie called “The End.” Its a documentary on the lives of real, East End gangsters, directed by Nicola Collins. The East Enders are the guys that Guy Ritchie fawns over in films like “Snatch” and “Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.” In fact Nicola and her lovely twin sister, Teena provide serious eye candy in “Snatch” as the lovely daughters of Shabbas Goy, Doug “The Head” Denovitz.
Collins’ bare knuckled portrayal of the East End hoods is fascinating. Debt collectors, underground fight promoters, shake down artists, hustlers and stick-up men reveal bits and pieces of their checkered past. The whole scene arose from the rubble of WW2, when the East End had been bombed to smithereens by the Germans. The Likes of Victor Dark, Jimmy Tibbs and Les Falco (Collins’ real life father) played in the ashes of history on the streets of London’s shattered past, where any gains of the working class had been obliterated, reducing their lives to something approaching less than zero. Falco talks about how kids had to scrape over scraps of food, like apple cores. This was a brutal playground where you had to fight for just about anything and everything, not the least of which was self-respect. Nearly every one of Collins’ “good fellas” talks about being bullied and eventually having to stand up to them. Falco, the pretty boy of the bunch recounts a story where he was roughed up and came running into his house to his mother, who basically said; “Get back out there and fight with your fists. If that doesn’t work, use your feet. If that doesn’t work, find a brick and crack their fucking head open.” He must have learned the lesson well as he rose to the top of the East End’s heap, earning the nickname, “Dad” for his cool headed and paternal leadership of London’s most notorious, extended, thug family.
These are hard men, both emotionally and physically and yet, there is a curious honor amongst them, something as black and white as Collins’ cool portrayal of their lives. In essence, you know who they are and what their game is. No matter what type of suit they don, their past is mapped out by the landmarks of gouges, scars, crooked fingers and awkward gaits. There’s a touch of romanticism in Collins’ film and its easy to see why. Unlike the corporate criminals of Goldman Sachs, B.P., Chase, et al, hiding behind the sanctified veneer of their Brooks Brothers linen and Ivy League paper, you know where you stand with the East Enders. They make no apologies for who they are. They are the by-product of the human scrap heap. They’re tribal and non-conforming. And while its just as easy to view Tony Soprano as a psychopathic teddy bear, it bears remembering that these blokes did things like burn down buildings to eliminate competition and then extort money from shop keepers to “protect” them from suffering the same fate. Create the bogeyman, then create the solution to keep the bogeyman at bay. Sound familiar?
Yesterday, I interviewed Jeff Warrick, director of “Programming The Nation?” Warrick was an advertising guy that was interested in the whole concept of subliminal advertising, inspired by the seminal work, “Subliminal Seduction” by Wilson Bryan Key. Key, along with Noam Chomsky, Dennis Kucinich, Amy Goodman, Doug Rushkoff and others are interviewed in Warrick’s journey from skulls in ice cubes, to the psychotronic effects of HAARP. We eventually got around to OWS and talked about how social conditions program the populace, both overtly and covertly.
If you haven’t noticed, economic sanctions are in full effect across the planet. Its not just Syria or Iran any more. The soft siege of the money wars has been on for close to a decade now and is in its final phase. Poverty equals either crime or revolution. We’re in the latter now, but in the chaos and amorphous mission of OWS lies a field of charged potentiality that can be moved to a state change in any number of directions. It can result in a form of fight club nihilism, erasing not just the debt of western history, but also the fabric of its social memory. Throwing the baby out with the reversed osmosis and chlorine filtered bathwater, might not be the best course of action. Using antibiotics can work, but you can also exterminate extremely useful flora in the gut.
Revolutions are risky business. Sometimes they can turn out positively, like what happened here. And sometimes they’re Paris in 1789, where the uber rich essentially eliminated their competition in the name of “Libertie!” Or they are like Moscow in 1905 where the assets of an entire country were seized for the good of “The State” which then imposed a low level of poverty and a high level of paranoia throughout nearly every strata of Russian society.
On the front lines of OWS signs advocate the end of money as we know it. While this sounds quaint and egalitarian, what do the foot soldiers of OWS have in mind as a replacement? I’ve said this before and I will say it again; The astrological energy of our times is consistent with OWS. Uranus in Aries squaring Pluto in Capricorn signals change. Its on. From Greece to Zucotti Square, the swelling of the masses who know the game is rigged grows, but its not quite there yet, not critically massive.
Last week, I visited Occupy SF. The scene was decidedly different than OWS. Staked out at the Federal Building and two blocks away, just across from The Ferry Building, it has the feel of a street squat. I recognize the new revolutionaries as runaways, asphalt anarchists, and dumpster divers; the pierced refuse of a country that’s starved itself on over-consumption. They’re the new East Enders, but unlike bare knuckled fighting legend, Roy “Pretty Boy” Shaw, who survived to fight, they’re fighting to survive.
As we swim deeper into Scorpio, we’ll see Jupiter in Taurus (retrograde) oppose the Scorpio Sun, which will shine light on the infested bowels of the financial system and even OWS itself. On 11/3/11 Mercury and Venus enter into Sag together as both make their way to the True Node, currently in Sag.
On 11/11/11 at 11:11 AM in New York, Mercury and Venus enter Sag at 11 degrees (That’s seven elevens if you’re keeping score at home). The Sabian Symbol for 11/12 degrees Sag is extremely interesting; “A Flag Turns Into An Eagle; The Eagle Into A Chanticleer Saluting The Dawn.” A rough interpretation of this symbol is laden with all kinds of symbolic goodness. We see the transubstantiation of an ideal (the flag) into a living symbol of truth (the eagle). Here we go from the symbolic ideal, to the symbolic real. Then, the eagle transmigrates into a chanticleer ( a rooster). The whole concept of the chanticleer or “chantecler” is fascinating. In “The Nun’s Priest Tale” by Chaucer, there is a fable that recounts the tale of a “Chauntecleer” a rooster who dreams of his own demise at the hands of a fox. In this sense, the rooster is a prophet, but an uneasy one at that. He wakes one of his seven hen wives, “Pertolote” who essentially tells him to go back to sleep and not worry.
Chauntecleer eventually meets the fox of his nightmare and the foxy fox appeals to the rooster’s ego, by getting him to close his eyes, tilt his head back and sing to the rising Sun. When he does, the fox snatches him from the farm and runs. The other animals from the farm give chase and the rooster tells them to give up and that his fate is sealed. The fox then succumbs to his own hubris and begins taunting the other animals. Chauntecleer manages to escape while the fox has his guard down and flies into the safety of a nearby tree, shaken but wiser. The moral of the story? The rooster met the fate of his doom and yet it wasn’t sealed. Maybe he awoke from his nightmare too soon and skipped the happy ending, or perhaps the Great Dreamer had an alternate ending in store for the Chauntecleer which he could not perceive. Whatever reason Chauntecleer’s swift turn of fortune was not revealed to him in his vision is unclear, but one thing is; “The craftiest animal of the woods got sloppy and lost the game.”