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Cutting Down the Amerikan-style Bar Dependency

Posted: November 18, 2015 in aggressive lowlifes, alcohol, alcoholic dens, ale, ale houses, American Independence from the British Empire, Amerikan Empire, Amerikan political-economic nightmare, Anti-Saloon League, Bacchus, bank debit cards, bar conversations, bar owners, bar patrons, barrels, bars, bartenders, beers, binge drinkers, bodegas, booze, bordellos, brasserie, Canterbury Tales, capitalism, card games, carnival, casks, Chaucer, cities, clientelle, cocktails, community, concoctions, conflict, convenience stores, counters, cover charges, cultural personality, culture, customer marks, dignity, drinkers, drinking at home, drinking establishments, drinks, drunkeness, DUIs, Eighteenth-Ammendment, employees, Europe, European Civilization, extermination, eye candy, Falstaff, football, fraudsters, free drinks, freedmen, freedom, freeholders, gambling, game nights, Global Monopoly Capitalism, gun fights, hangouts, happy hours, hipsters, history, honor, hotels, idolatry, imprisonment, innkeepers, inns, Internet, kneipe, landlords, licensing, liquor stores, liquors, lock ins, lodging, loose women, male spaces, markets, mead, meat markets, modernity, money, monopolies, music, newspapers, nightclubs, oblations, opera houses, order out, owner class, PAN, partying, police, pool halls, prepared foods, Priapus, professional sports, Prohibition, pubs, repeal, rip-off joints, roads, Roman civilization, rudeness, salaries, saloons, savage capitalist system, scams, sensuality, Shakespeare, sloppy sex, small business owner class, soccer, social class, social inventions, speakeasies, spirits, supermarkets, tabernae, take outs, taverns, tenants, themed bars, tickets, tills, tipping scams, tips, toilets, trade, travel, travelers, US federal government, violence, visitors, wage slaves, wages, Wild West, wines, Woman's Christian Temperance Movement, Woman's Crusade 1873, women
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 Roman tabernaeOlde Roman daysChaucer's Tabard Inn story hourFalstaff with a roundWild West saloon after hoursAmerican speakeasyAmerican sports barAmerican old man bar

ready to serve you assholesBar service please

Some social inventions have endowed humanity’s diversity for millennium. The public market was one such social invention, but modern capitalism exterminated that one.

The monopolies of print newspapers were definitely not one of them. Idolatry and innuendo of the printed word can only go so far, and thankfully, the Internet is destroying that media. European civilization did gift the world two good things however: the game of football, or soccer as we say in the States, and public drinking establishments.

Yet, I now despise bars. I used to enjoy visiting such alcoholic dens. But even when a few bars have had good tasting food to offer – I cannot do it anymore – nor can I afford it anymore. I have seen the light of Reason. But a more important question begs to order: what happened to public drinking establishments in the States? The American Revolution was partly started in urban taverns, and the Wild West lived inside of western saloons.

We must return to Roman civilization. The first bars were actually Tabernae, or taverns. These little stores and eating-drinking establishments had the complete bottom floor to the roads. The owners were often freedmen who got into the trade in order to supply urban dwellers and other visitors ready-made, cheap foods and cheap drinks.

There was not much mead, nor bier, or beer, in those Roman cities. Instead, the cauponis, or innkeepers, served vino, or wine, out of cool, large wooden casks, called cellae, with the most expensive regional grape representing Falernia. The first bars or taverns were more similar to the small convenience stores with large wine barrels, now called bodegas, currently found all over Spain.

Thanks to this popular Roman experiment in social class climbing and cheap oblations, the invention spread all over European civilization, from the steppes of the Rus, or Russia, to the hills of Hibernia, or Ireland, from the fjords of Norvege, or Norway, to the mountains of Iberia, or Spain. Europeans would never lose their shoddy reputations as the Kings of Binge Drinkers and ad-hoc partying. Roman Carnival just never ended for all of them: Bacchus, (Drink), Pan, (Music), and Priapus, (Sloppy Sex). In our absurd contemporary world, we can now add, football, or Soccer, into the sensual mix.

German culture had the kneipe, while French culture preferred the brasserie. The Spanish set up mesones. For the sake of this essay, I will not list every European name for a bar-drinking establishment, as the reader could surely find a specific name for such places in every European language, from Turkish to Breton, and from Frisian to Basque. The American version takes its lift from British culture.

Britain had its alehouses, which were private drinking establishments with a 24 hour, seven-day a week, lock ins. These places were in pre-Norman invasion Britain. At least one thing survived the Anglo-Norman shock troops.

It was during the late 13th century that the first public houses, or pubs, appeared, often run by tenants paying a fee for serving the brew master’s ales, or through freeholders, who owned the entire operation.

These public drinking establishments became such a rage that England’s greatest authors celebrated the local cultures that swam in such saloons, or particular entertainment rooms, filled with storytelling, songs, music and games. Chaucer’s setting for the Canterbury Tales took place at the roadside Tabard Inn, while the notorious Shakespearean character, Falstaff, was often found half-drunk, or pissed, at the Boar’s Head Inn.

Due to the hazards of road travels in those medieval days, many pubs were similar to travelers inns and taverns, which served special drinks and prepared foods. Some places had shared bed lodging, so the drinkers could snore and sleep off the hard water alcohol. The inns generally served beer and ale, while the taverns also served wines.

When the States was the colonial American Plantations, taverns became the premier social space for American men. In Boston, the historical legend states that the first plotters began their talks for American independence inside the Green Dragon Tavern.

As the United States moved west, the first saloons opened their doors for men, which were essentially taverns that served mainly whiskey, beer, sweet wine and other strange concoctions. These saloons also had gambling, such as tilted machines, dice draws, and card games. Other saloons attached themselves to bordellos of loose women, the so-called ‘opera house’ for cheap entertainment, or the local hotel.

Once the US Federal government ‘closed the western frontier’ and ended any ‘wild west’ freedom, about 100 years ago, the first state licensed bars emerged. The bars took their style from the original pub counters in Britain – without the saloon theatrics. Gun fights in the bars now led to arrests and imprisonment. The origins of bars were more medicinal, since certain sick people could take spirits in order to soothe their pains.

With the Woman’s Crusade of 1873, the Woman’s Christian Temperance Movement and the Anti-Saloon League gaining in political favor, the saloon-bar was a marked entity. The US Federal Government passed the Eighteenth amendment to the Constitution, and the drinking establishments ceased to exist – except for the illegal Speakeasies. This period was Prohibition.

After the repeal of Prohibition in the 1930s, the saloon transformed into a wild west side-show, and the bar took over everything, with taverns only designating food service with booze. Bars were also open to both men and women. The meat market scene began with both young and old men trying to chat with, and hopefully lay, the women visitors.

In towns across America, each bar snatched a particular, cultural personality. There were the dive bars for the drunks and cheap losers, old men bars for the elderly drunks and cheap losers, cowboy bars, local bars, cop bars, gay-lesbian bars, black bars, (for the Blacks), vato bars, (for the Mexicans), driller bars, (for the oil and gas workers), and miner bars. With the success of professional sports in American life, and especially the NFL, during the 1970s, the sports bar emerged with multiple television sets on the walls.

In the Amerikan Empire, we now have themed bars, from Metal to Folk, and from Punk to ‘Decadent,’ or whatever that means. Bars have used every imaginable enticement in order to fleece more money from the customer-marks. They regularly employ happy hours, free crappy food days, lady’s nights, DJ-band cover charges, game nights, trivia nights and holiday bashes with expensive entrance tickets. The old demarcations between bars and private nightclubs have blurred.

The pool hall is falling into the relic of historical memory – while hopefully, the latest incarnation of the Amerikan bar will end up there too. Why would a Doctor Historian Anarchist wish for such a thing?

Walking into an American bar is like invading the private den of an enemy. Our current incarnations of bars have lost their community soul. Even the local bar in the small town is dying. Many of the people visiting such establishments represent the lumpen refuse of the Amerikan political-economic nightmare.

Most of the patrons have serious drinking problems, terrible physical maladies, or mental issues – or all the above together. The conversations are either one person monologues that display horrendous suffering, or they represent aggressive-paranoia, back and forth bantering. I have never been able to have an enlightening talk with another person inside those places. I have been able to converse with others inside weirdo cafes – while loaded with caffeine.

The consummation of heavy doses of alcohol with extreme global monopoly capitalism has murdered the bar vibe. This is the reason we should cut down the bar dependency: global monopoly capitalism.

Bars often have owners who personify the worst elements of the small business owner class. Some years ago, I remember visiting a bar run by so-called Anarcho-Syndicalists in a hipster west coast city, and I later found out that the employees did not even receive wages – only tips! And those guys were supposedly fighting the Class War in the employee’s name? There are hundreds of bars across the States where the owners don’t even pay their employees basic wages.

Due to the nastiness of the owners, the tipping scam is out of control in those rip off joints. At restaurants, Americans generally tip 20% for the final bill of service. But in bars, the bartenders expect at least a dollar tip for every drink served! Most bars now have drinks that at least cost five dollars or more, so a dollar plus per drink means 20% per order. If you decide to act the gentleman and pay for a few rounds, the customer is looking at a good amount of his or her salary falling into bartender tips. If you don’t follow this code, you might have the bartender slip some Visine eye wash into your next order – and straight to the restroom you will run.

Intelligent patrons know that using a bank-debit card in a bar is a dangerous proposition. In American bars, you must only use cash. When the bartender’s friends come in for a visit, which they regularly do, then guess who is paying for the ‘free drinks’?

When the bartenders are not dipping into the owner’s till for their lost wages – then the rest of the drinks are on you. If you forget your card and leave it overnight, then you might as well take a deep monetary hit.

Finally, both bar owners and bartenders are generally rude cretins. I have rarely encountered a gentleman-gentlewoman bartender or bar owner working inside an American drinking hole. I have encountered plenty of obnoxious and rude assholes – and they still expect you to tip them 20%!

How many actual bartenders know how to pour a beer, mix a cocktail or even serve properly a glass of wine? There are very few left. In our savage capitalist system, more and more low skilled, jack of all trades people now work behind the bar counter. They might dress well, have a tight friendship with the owner, and if they are attractive women, create a certain eye candy – but they are not true bartenders.

Our bars have even become part of the grand American Pyramid Scheme. We pay inflated prices on cheap drinks in order to feel happy for a very short period in our transient lives; meanwhile the bar owner and bartender openly detest us. They might say hello and do a little idle chatter with us, but their eyes always betray their hate and murder. We continue to flush our money down their till toilets.

We do have options. We could simply visit the local liquor store, convenience store or supermarket down the street. Buy paying less for more product, we might also have some money left over for food, like a delicious round of pizzas. We can enjoy the booze and food all within the good community of family and friends.

We ought to reject the fears of encountering bar owner-bartender scam artists, and the aggressive lowlifes who regular visit dive bars in order to commit violent acts. We don’t even have to worry about getting DUIs, where the police normally haunt bars in order to destroy people’s lives.

Submitting to a supposedly cool, fraudster-hipster hangout is just not worth the destruction of our honor, nor the loss of our basic human dignity, nor even playing slaughter house chicken with our fragile lives.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Worlds of Pharmakopeia IV: Tobacco, Euro-Colonialism Murders another Native Plant

Posted: November 10, 2014 in absurdity, addictions, advertising, Africa, African slaves, agriculture, American colonialism, American plantation killing centers, American slavery, anti-smoking legislation, anti-tobacco coalitions, aristocratic lords, Asia, ATF, Atlantic Ocean, Black Gold, botany, Bresil, burning, cancers, cannabis, capital, capitalism, Caribbean Sea, chemical adulteration, chemical-industrial surgery, chemicals, chewing, Christian anti-smoking groups, cigarette packs, cigars, climate, coffee, colonial markets, colonial monopolies, colonial penetration, colonialism, commodities, commodity fetishes, contrabandists, coolness, corporate health care costs, corporate patents, corporate taxes, coughs, credit, crops, Cuba, cultivation, cultural activities, cultural associations, cultural life, cultural links, culture, death, drink, drugs, elite consumption, elites, emphysema, empire, empires, Euro-american civilization, Europe, European aristocrats, European civlization, European colonialism, European empires, European imperialism, European invaders, European monarchies, export commodities, factories, factory work, fashion, flora diversity, food, freedom, fumes, fuming poisons, gardens, genocide, gentlemen, Glasgow, habit, hatred, health, history, Hollywood, human condition under civilization, imperialism, imprisonment, Industrial Capitalism, inhalation-exhalation, intoxication, investors, Jamaica, kidnapping, kiosks, labor, landed estates, laws, leaves, legal crime, legal criminality, legal theft, manufacture, mass murder, media manipulation, medical experts, Mercantile Capitalism, metropolitan markets, Mexico City, missionaries, mode, monopolies, murder, natives, new women, newspapers, nicotine, official medicine, ownership, papers, pastes, penal slavery, pipes, plantation slavery, planters, plants, playing cards, power, private property rights, processing, production, profit, public education school administrators, publicity, puffing, punk musicians, rebellion, refinement, rock musicians, royal companies, royal monopolies, self-proclaimed owners, sensuality, Sevilla, sexual fetishes, shaving, shipping, slave owners, slavery, slaves, smoke, smokers, smoking, smoking breaks, smoking jackets, smoking parlors, snuff, social parasites, soil, sugar, tea, the Americas, the body, the modern State, the modern world, the State, tobacco, tobacco industry, tobacco lords, tobacco shops, transporting, urban life, US government war against tobacco, Virginia Tidewater Plantation, war, war against working class smokers, weight, weight control, women models, work, work to death, workers, world history
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Only in our evil, modern world do native flora varieties arouse such enduring hatreds.

There still exist the sick hatreds against cannabis sativa, psilocybe semilanceata, erythroxylum coca, and there is one plant that receives the coveted prize in pure hate, nicotiana tabacum.

What is so strange about this hatred is that this same plant was integrally important for European colonialism and industrial capitalism in world history. European and Euro-American civilizations could not have progressed as they did without the native american gift of tobacco plantations, working slave labor to death, and then, the tobacco processing, factory work, building even larger ships, international marketing and sophisticated advertising.

How did such an enjoyable American plant associated with native community peace, and smoked through pastes, leaves, hand-made pipes and even chewed, transform into such a European commodity fetish under global capitalism?

Nicotiana tabacum was once a naturally growing, medicinal and spiritual plant for America’s native nations. European colonial invaders, investors, and murderers transformed the plant into an export drug of commodity for elite consumption under the inexhaustible profit-making schemes of capitalism.

Columbus and his invading men did not just murder, imprison and sell native slaves on the island of Cuba during the 1490s. They also spotted some, ‘naked’ Carib natives smoking a herb placed in some leaves. The scent was quite intoxicating and the natives seemed to enjoy the community based smoke. They did not inhale, yet the effect of the plant was calming after they had eaten some fresh, delicious food, and the herb even had a sensual effect on the smokers. The European imperial-colonial invaders found another gift.

They stole the native plants from the Caribbean islands and transported them to Europe. The Europeans took a peculiar liking to them. In the 1500s, the Portuguese colonial invaders in the Americas, called Bresil, began to cultivate the native crop. It seemed to grow well in sub-tropical and tropical climates. When introduced into European aristocratic, social-parasite gardens inside of the great landed estates, tobacco plants sprouted quite well. Tobacco could also grow in mild, temperate, oceanic climates. The European elites were on to something.

During the seventeenth-century, some monarchs, political thugs and tyrants began to hate the plant. King James Stuart of England, Sultan Ammurath IV of Ottoman Turkey, and Czar Mikhail Romanov of Russia, represented some of the anti-tobacco elite crowd, while Pope Urban VIII actually had a papal bull written against the plant in the 1640s.

Yet the European colonial empires of Britain, France, Spain, the Netherlands and Portugal had succumbed to the gods of capital. Each empire set up their own royal monopolies for the plant. The annoying question was where to grab the labor in order to work long hours in the hot sun: picking, drying, curing and transporting the leaves. The Europeans had made themselves the self-proclaimed owners of nicotine tabacum, so at first, they used local penal labor to work them to death in order to enrich the tobacco lords or planters. Where could one find a continual supply of slave labor?

An even greater economic windfall emerged through such an American cultivation – the theft of human chattel, or the kidnapping, murder, transporting and working to death of African slaves.

The Portuguese had first established their monopoly of the Blackened Brown Gold during the late sixteenth-century and early seventeenth-century, (about 1560-1660). Due to the importance of such American export plantation crops, such as tobacco, the English, Dutch, (the Netherlands), and the French established their own ‘African’ slave monopolies. A plant associated with community peace and enjoyment, took on the ominous tones of legal crime, kidnapping, imprisonment, mass murder, genocide and working people to death. Tobacco actually helped birth mercantile capitalism.

Mercantile Capitalism implied royal European controls of an export commodity, such as tobacco, sugar, coffee, tea, chocolate, salt and kidnapped African slaves, while it established permanent credit to slave plantation owners in order for them to purchase a continual supply of Africans and other penal slaves, (the European looking, or white ones). The American plantation-slave owners and European tobacco traders-ship investors made their profits through inflated price sales in the home or European metropolitan markets.

Meanwhile, European navies and missionaries tried to open greater markets for the American products in the Asian continents. Slowly, nicotine snuff and tobacco smoking had spread into the Islamic world culture, then Persia-Iran, the Indian sub-continent, Central Asia and ultimately into the Far East, China and even Japan.

In the eighteenth-century, the European tobacco manufacturers developed the smaller ‘cigarette’ varieties, and for those that preferred to chew, snuff boxes. All of this cigarette finery was for elite European consumption.

Elaborate, silver inlaid snuff boxes entered the world of fashion conscious, French aristocratic-parasite bums. In Britain, gentlemen established new cultural activities, fashions and spaces besides fencing, hunting, dances, card games, tea and reading – the smoking parlor with the smoking jacket.

A good tobacco smoke was always perfect after a good meal, with some intoxicating liquor or with some fine coffee. European grifters-Latin lovers, such as the Venetian, Giacomo Casanova, also took up the habit, and so tobacco grabbed some important cultural associations within European culture: sensuality, refinement, power and a coolness under pressure.

Most importantly, King Tobacco had changed the colonial-metropolitan relationships. The Scottish Tobacco Lords transformed the city of Glasgow into the premier tobacco import-export port. These same ‘lords’ would build their mini castles along Jamaica and Virginia Streets.

Those same streets had the infamous names of the most infernal, African slave killing centers in world history.

Virginia, once a colonial outpost of disease and hardship, had become the British Empire’s premier, tobacco plantation colony on the Tidewater during the 1700s. Is it any wonder that most of America’s revolutionary founders came from this proud plantation region made rich through the marvelous drug of tobacco?

During the same eighteenth-century, the Spanish colonial authorities had established the first urban factory for cigar-cigarette paper rolling and export packaging in Mexico City. Earlier, the Spanish had established the city of Seville as the premier processing center for cigars. For over a century in colonial Spanish America, and well before Metropolitan Europe, both men and women had been openly smoking tobacco cigarettes on the public streets. American fashion and prominence had come to Europe – mainly through the marvelous and medicinal herb of nicotiana tabacum.

Throughout the nineteenth-century, the 1800s, tobacco manufacturers had developed better technology in curing and rolling for three particular products: cigars, cigarettes, (blond and black versions), and chewable snuff.

The first tobacco companies consolidated themselves, while they competed with each other for the monopoly share of the smokers and chewers’ markets. This modern tobacco industry also encouraged the adulteration of tobacco through chemical engineering in order to hold their monopolies. Tobacco products even had molasses, rum, opium or honey mixed into the final product.

Tobacco eventually became part of modern, European and Euro-American cultural life. Royalty, lazy aristos, middle class-respectable clerks, and working class dock workers took up the smoking habit. The problem was that many of the men inhaled the nicotine fumes. Certain political-economic elites, Women Christian Temperance clubs and health workers noticed the persistent coughs of regular smokers. The modern anti-smoking movement had begun.

Meanwhile, tobacco shops and kiosks became one of the standard sights found on most city streets around the world, and where they also featured other items for sale, such as newspapers, books, shaving kits, pipes, rolling papers, pen knives, board games and playing cards.

In the twentieth-century, the 1900s, the tobacco industry transformed the world of advertising and mass marketing. A few tobacco monopolies had controlled the sale of ‘cigarette packs” and they made fortunes on the drug.

Smoking found associations with soldiers during World War I and for most wars afterwards. In the 1920s, cigarette companies targeted their advertising to the ‘new woman,’ thanks to the propaganda genius of the Austrian-American, Edward Bernays. Hollywood’s golden age featured most of their stars regularly smoking the sacred plant. Can anyone forget the famous pictures of Humphrey Bogart and James Dean without cigarettes dangling from their mouths?

While tobacco use seemed to sell exponentially – and especially in Asia, the anti-smoking forces mercilessly attacked the drug. Medical experts exposed the correlations between nicotine use and cancer, emphysema and other incurable maladies.

An anti-smoking coalition emerged. This motley prohibitionist group included family survivors of smokers who had died bad deaths, medical professionals, public education school administrators, and Christian religious groups,. Political-economic elites also joined their ranks, since they wanted better workers not taking so many smoking breaks, inclusive of less corporate health care costs.

Tobacco prohibitionists began to push for greater anti-smoking legislation. By the 1980s, they had succeeded in seizing the State.

In some urban cities in the United States, smoking is highly expensive, heavily taxed, and there are petty, minute federal, state and municipal laws that dictate where a person can or cannot smoke in public. Any street vendor trying to sell cheap cigarettes from another state, now has the felon tag of a ‘contrabandist,’ and can end up in prison or even have the cops murder him. The US government has a well-armed regulatory agency against tobacco, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, or the ATF, and so the US government has declared another war – this time against tobacco.

Yet, millions of young women, and especially models, smoke tobacco in order to help them not gain weight. Rock artists, punk musicians and other fringe artists regularly flaunt the burning cigarette in the mouth while they play their guitars brutally. Even some right-wing political activists have proudly taken the puff. The cigarette has its own sexual fetishes, and due to the US government’s war against it, now has associations with rebellion and freedom.

The history of nicotiana tabacum shows us once again, the absurdity of the human condition under civilization. A plant that once helped natives in the Americas ensure community peace and unions through the spiritual worlds, has undergone a terrible and irreversible chemical-medical-industrial-state regulated surgery.

European colonial elites had imposed this condition. They did this without the consent of the native victims of their genocides. The addictive desires for naked profits enabled another genocide against kidnapped Africans.

Most assiduously, certain corporations have claimed their own patents or imposed ‘ownership,’ on this natural plant, while they have mixed harmful chemicals into the industrial melting pot, creating a type of fuming poison. Finally, the contemporary State, ruled and administered by shameless sociopaths, constantly devises sinister means in punishing the working class smokers of the drug.

Tobacco was never the original enemy to stamp out. The sinister legacies of our European colonial settler states, once again, carry all the historical blame.