Reprint: Second Interview with Augustus Invictus

Note about this article: After posting this, I made the naive decision to engage Augustus Invictus’ fans and got called a number of intensive insults by his … spirited fans. I said stuff back that was equally offensive, which I have since apologized to Augustus personally for. It felt like the friend who arranged it and I put effort in to being nice and got it thrown back at us but that was no excuse for getting in the mud. I assume he accepted the apology since I never heard about it again.

The tone when I wrote this seems to want to strongly condemn the Alt Right and the Trump climate. I found another article I wrote for Global Comment where I was trying loudly to sound the alarm about Trump. While Global Comment put a good deal of their own material in to that hysterical article, it’s a bit embarrassing to see how hysterical it was. By the end of the cycle, I was writing about Russophobia and wondering if it was all a huge charade, eventually tuning out completely.

I have since seen antifa destroy public utility vehicles while the alt right has driven cars in to people – both are acting equally destructive and as part of a spectacle that will not last indefinitely. Here is a picture of some of that destruction:

 

Given all that, the experience made me all but exit political engagement during the Trump era. I have written only two political articles during this period, both for the Hampton Institute, and each pertaining to the hysteria of Russophobia. Read them here and here. There was a big relief in writing something only when something needed to be said and focusing on other endeavors in life. The energy to write about this all from an intensive or involved perspective simply vanished completely – while working at a SF newspaper, I spoke with a member of the Proud Boys and all but scrapped the article and working there, moving over to urban development journalism. I just didn’t quite get what the point was anymore.

The last few years have been inexplicable and yet a seeming repeat all at once – a big circus of madness intended to distract us from the coming scramble between multiple countries for the resources of Africa, Asia, and other parts of the world. We went through all of this madness in the 1970s. The thought could not escape me that we had been through all of this before. I’m reprinting this as the second “Unite the Right” event nears. I think this strange circle we have been through will soon reach some sort of a conclusion and it’s up to us to build something afterwards.

I articulated this thought in a song I recorded – perhaps this isn’t a time of despair but a time of hope, for all our expectations were at a loss, and all that’s left is what we decide for ourselves. Prayer in reverse.

You’re using your campaign for the Toga Virilis as a rallying point to lead people in a larger culture war. First, would you consider that assessment fair, and second, how do you see that role in the culture war playing out?

That is indeed a fair assessment. I have remarked numerous times that this campaign is much larger than the mere election of Florida’s next Senator. I have also noted that this movement must be cultural in order to be effective, as a mere political election without deeper roots would be an empty, meaningless, short-term change without aim. If we want to change the political system in any real way, we must first change the culture.

As concerns the larger culture war, I would first remark that a culture war is not necessarily limited to a mere battle over art forms and literary experiments. I do see literal violence coming. As for my role in that war, it could be that the country collapses and I will be in a position to lead at that time in a way I am unable to lead now, due to so many having such faith in the System at the present time. Or it could be that I will have to push this System to collapse myself. I am prepared in my heart for either eventuality.

You focus on what some would call Libertarian-Nationalism or Anarcho-Nationalism, but you do advocate for a stronger state role in Environmental and Energy policy. So how do we advance these issues through the State and see better outcomes than previous attempts?

I do have many supporters who are anarchists, but I have never made any bones about the fact that I do believe that government has a role to play in human affairs. Neither have I ever made any secret of my environmentalism, which is central to both my religion and my politics. It seems to me that without clean air, water, and soil, none of our other freedoms matter. Of what import is my freedom to own a sailboat if the waters are black with bile and filled with garbage? What matters my freedom to go grocery shopping if all of the food is poisoned? Why should the right against search & seizure by the Government be more sacred to me than the soil I tread and the air I breathe? The Libertarians who put economic concerns above the environment absolutely baffle me. But I’m sure I baffle them as well, and as with all things in governmental affairs, different values must be balanced. In any event, I do not see any greater controversy in the state outlawing the dumping of chemicals into the water than in the state outlawing the use of child labor in coal mines. Either way, the state is outlawing a deplorable practice that has actual victims.

The Boring and Unsexy Question: The Libertarian Party has a closed convention process and more often than not forces their own candidates to run as NPA candidates. Do you see yourself being a NPA candidate endorsed by the party or the candidate of the party?

Unless someone runs against me in the primary and wins, I will be the Libertarian candidate on the ballot. The leadership and the old guard have been trying to recruit someone to run against me at least since last April, and every potential rival has fallen through. To campaign for the United States Senate requires a great expenditure of time and money. It weighs heavily on your friends and family, absolutely destroys some relationships and creates others, causes unimaginable upheaval in every aspect of your life. To think that anyone would want to do that to themselves just because they dislike me is totally unrealistic. Anyone who would challenge me in a primary and put themselves through all of this just to tear me down would have to be some kind of psychopath; and I don’t see the Party leadership pulling that sort of psychopath out of the woodwork in the next few months.

Do you believe one of the great problems of this country is we have moved away from republican virtues and towards democratic virtues? And if so how do we restore the ideas of republican virtues to the community at large?

I do, but I would go even further. I believe that an even greater problem – not just for our country but for Western Civilization as a whole – is that we have moved away from aristocratic values and toward egalitarian values. This idea that we are all special snowflakes deserving of a trophy, that we are all equal for the simple fact of being human, that we are all worthy to engage in the political process simply because we are breathing and over the age of eighteen: that is what sent the United States of America and the whole of Western Civilization to hell. And the only way to restore these values is to live them ourselves and to teach by our example.

Many look at the modern culture war being dominated by anger fueled by people who don’t understand the process of cultural change going on around them. Do you plan to focus your leadership to help people understand what’s going on so they can fight it effectively?

That is a very insightful question. I have tried – and probably failed – in my speeches to address the difference between an enemy and a nuisance, to distinguish between an existential threat and a mere problem. I see my own struggle, the struggle of our country, the struggle of the West, and the struggle of all humanity as different tiers. Or perhaps it would be more accurate to say that they are parts of an integrated cycle. For the true war is eternal, the war of the Spirit against the material. If you look at it on this level, the true enemy is always inside of ourselves.

On another level, the true enemy is the man pulling the levers behind the curtain, the moneyed interests controlling our politicians, our public policy, our schools, and all else. These are the people setting the agenda, and these are the ones I have sought out as my enemies.

On yet another level, we see the better-known (or at least better-advertised) conflicts: Republican versus Democrat, pro-life versus pro-choice, Fascist versus Communist, Yankee versus Southerner, priest versus humanist, Christian versus Muslim. The fact that many of these conflicts are manufactured by the lever-pullers does not make them any less real, and the Democrat may well see the Republican as his true enemy just as I see the financiers, the academicians, and the heads of state as mine.

But again, the true struggle is inside of us. Daily we choose self-restraint or self-indulgence. Daily we choose between selfish comfort and selfless action. Daily we choose whether we love the Spirit and all that flows from it or the trappings of material life that keep us in chains. Recognizing that is perhaps the essence of the human experience.

TILHAS – SAMURAI EP (LISTEN NOW!)

Following is the completed version of my EP Samurai, the second effort by Tilhas. I’ve been pretty slim on promotion and have just been trying to teach myself to put together the kind of music I want people to hear. Each song has a clear premise:

“Samurai” is a story of resurgent nihilism that was my way of expressing the strange state of the world today. I think everyone can get their own personal message out of it.

“Prayer in Reverse” is a flip on how many people present life in a declining civilization. Perhaps prayer works in reverse, with God praying for us?

“The Animal that says ‘Ye-a,’ the Dionysian animal” is a song about the strange (a word I’m using an awful lot) metamorphosis of Kanye West.

“Cans in Ukraine” is about the emptiness that goes on in the world when we sit back and say nothing. I recommend everyone do exactly that after they listen to this music. It will be relaxing.

“Udesh” was my attempt at playing the keys for the Mongolian folk song “Ulaanbaatariin Udesh.” I wasn’t the best at it and so played it a bit slowly. The way it turned out seemed better suited for an instrumental song. Listen.

The First Tilhas Megamix Vol. 1: “A Spiritual Crisis of Meaning” – Featuring Gnostiquette and Simone Salvatori of Spiritual Front

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A couple years ago, I ran across a podcast that was called “The Essence.” Long lost from internet memory, it contained a perfect mix of music by new wave artists like Devision and Heaven 17. Interspersed was talking, brief radio cuts, and a number of other things that made the music much more effective than if you ever heard the tracks individually.

As far as I know, there isn’t really anything like this for the neofolk genre. This mix is for promotional use only – I put it together in order to promote the work of two artists I admire – Eva Gnostiquette and Simone Salvatori of Spiritual Front. I am only providing this link for streaming and not download. The music is from Simone’s collaborative album The Lust Syndicate. You can purchase the newest Spiritual Front album Amour Braque here. You can listen to the Lust Syndicate more officially here:

Gnostiquette’s music is a deep immersion in to her transgender identity, along with her pursuit of god as an orthodox priestess. She is heavily influenced by both Death In June and Current 93, stalwarts of the neofolk genre.

Pictured above: Simone Salvatori

Pictured above: Gnostiquette

Following is a tracklist of the music contained in the mix:

Track 1. Intro: Langtang
Track 2. Kago no Naka
Track 3. Prayer Wheel
Track 4: Gnostiquette – Masquerade of the Saris
Track 5. Simone Salvatori – Death Moves Toward Us
Track 6. Call to Prayer
Track 7. Gnostiquette – Bella Ciao
Track 8. The Lust Syndicate – One Creed
Track 9. The Lust Syndicate – Capitalism As Religion
Track 10: Gnostiquette – Love Is A Contradiction Without God
Track 11: Gnostiquette – The Future Has Been Cancelled
Track 12: The Lust Syndicate – Financial Aristocracy
Track 13: Tilhas – Time To Go
Track 14: Tilhas – Samurai
Track 15: Tilhas featuring Gnostiquette – Who Are You Now, Old Man?
Track 16: Gnostiquette – Even the Almighty Sun has Moths Flying into it

Tilhas – “The animal that says “Ye-a,” the Dionysian animal”

Kanye_Tilhas

America’s schizophrenic madness has moved on from Kanye West saying that “slavery is a choice” to Roseanne Barr comparing a former Obama aide to “Planet of the Apes.” Americans are obsessed and think about black people all of the time, every day – the African American population, despite being a minority, is the core catalyst of most major movements in American culture. This makes them both a target for intense hatred and oppression and attention and adulation.

Despite Kanye no longer being the top story in the news, I have completed a song compiling some of his stranger comments. The cover art is designed by Elliot Dov-Ber Cheifetz. Zero profit was taken in this and is for promotional use only. If you want to give money for a Kanye effort, buy his music.

Coming Soon: Kanye, the Dionysian Animal

Hello, all!

Whatever you think about Kanye West, he has been challenging the music world and the United States with unpredictable yet nonetheless passionate thoughts. I am putting together an esoteric dance track that compiles some of his thoughts.

Given that Kanye copyrights a good amount of his videos on YouTube, I am going to be posting the song on Bandcamp for free. Kanye, if you are reading (or if your team is), this will be a completely profitless effort. This is the cover we’ve put together:

Kanye_Tilhas

“Avengers: Infinity War” and some ideas for the MCU

I saw Avengers: Infinity War with my wife this week. Guess what? I loved it. Marvel’s writers and creators did a brilliant job of interweaving several franchises in to one singular, epic film.

Without spoiling too much, the film started off with a confrontation between Thor, his brother Loki, and the Hulk with Thanos, the immensely powerful cosmic being who spends the rest of the film seeking after the full set of Infinity Stones. The stones were used in Guardians of the Galaxy by Starlord, AKA Peter Quill (played by Chris Pratt), to kill Ronin, a lackey of Thanos.

Thor eventually meets up with the Guardians, who then all team in with the Avengers. Black Panther becomes involved, as does Spider-Man. The shocking end to the film, which presumed a fate that needs some sort of resolution in either Avengers 4 or Captain Marvel, was possibly some of the best filmmaking in the superhero genre.

My personal theory is that future films will see some interdimensional travelling, with the space commanding hero Captain Marvel somehow channeling versions of the characters Thanos killed (and for those who haven’t seen the film, I won’t say who those are) that are more powerful than ever, powered by Infinity Stones from those dimensions.

The upcoming Captain Marvel, along with Venom, a film produced by Sony “in association with Marvel,” illustrate both a consolidation of Marvel’s franchises in to the Marvel Cinematic Universe along with an expansion and exploration in to Marvel’s lesser known characters. Characters which I honestly never thought would have blockbuster films centered around them. I have an idea for what could make them work. Here they are:

Captain Marvel and the X-Men: When I was a kid, I never really read anything starring this character. However, I did read the X-Men series from the 1970s, and the later cartoon that depicted it, in which Rogue stole her powers while still a member of the Brotherhood of Mutants.

Eventually, some sort of soft reboot of X-Men will occur, in which the characters are portrayed no longer as Fox franchises but as part of the MCU. This will be the chance to depict characters like Rogue, Gambit or Kitty Pryde properly. Many space dwelling characters and species, like the Kree, are also being introduced in Guardians of the Galaxy and would be great for an MCU X-Men franchise. Having Rogue steal Captain Marvel’s powers after she saved the universe from Thanos would also give a more firm reason for mistrust of mutants than was ever explained in the Fox X-Men films, as well.

(A little correction: I’m not sure if Captain Marvel and Ms. Marvel are or were one in the same. whatever the case, these are stories that really need to hit the big screen.)

Rogue could lead in to Gambit, a character that was barely ever used in the Fox films but who has so much potential. Gambit was a big part of the Mutant Massacre, one of my favorite storylines. In that storyline, a team of mercenaries eliminates the entire population of Morlocks, an underground dwelling of undesirable mutants.

Later, in the 1990s, Gambit was put on trial for his crimes and, after an intervention by the X-Men stopped his execution, he was abandoned by Rogue in the Antarctic. Hugh Jackman is set to retire and he should be allowed to be the definitive Wolverine – there are plenty of stories that don’t involve him and the creation of the MCU gives the great opportunity to finally tell those.

Wonder Man: A good amount of second tier Marvel characters have been introduced to the mainstream world, thanks to the MCU – War Machine, Hawkeye, Vision. Marvel films even started with a trilogy centered around what was a third or fourth tier character – Blade.

Wonder Man is a long standing character in the Marvel Universe, introduced in #9 of the first run of the Avengers. Simon Williams is a flip on Tony Stark, a billionaire munitions selling industrialist who breaks out of the humiliation of being incarcerated for embezzlement after Baron Zemo, the Avengers arch villain depicted in Captain America: Civil War, empowers him with ionic energy.

Much like Scarlet Witch (and Quicksilver) in Avengers: Age of Ultron, Wonder Man is a pseudo hero who is depicted on both sides of the line. It would seem redundant after Scarlet Witch’s depiction to show him just as he was in the comic books but Wonder Man would be great in a Thunderbolts film. Thunderbolts are a superhero team formed by Baron Zemo that, while posing as heroes, had much less than altruistic goals.

1602: So this one is weird. Neil Gaiman wrote this series to depict, in the raw, Marvel’s litany of characters toward the end of Europe’s Renaissance period and at the tip of the Age of Exploration. Most of it is a straight reimagining of characters from now all the way back then.

I don’t think mainstream audiences would go for that. However, I think audiences would go for a 1602 that illustrates the ancestors of Marvel’s biggest characters or people that played similar roles to our beloved heroes. It would give a good sense of history to the franchise.

These are my ideas and what I would like to see. Other cool things would be X-Men interacting with the Kree and Shi’ar empires or the bizarre villains of Arcade, Mojo, or the Brood. X-Men: Dark Phoenix has been pushed back until 2019. My own personal theory, with little to back it up besides all the MCU activity that’s occurring, is that it’s being pushed back in order to bring the X-Men franchise in to the MCU.

The Watcher: A non-intervening cosmic entity, there is something theological about The Watcher. In Marvel Comics lore, he played a substantial role in nearly every cosmic storyline Marvel had, along with the What If? series, in which Marvel asked how things would turn out if certain variables had changed. Uatu is the Watcher assigned to earth but he is part of a race of watchers.

The Watcher could show up in Avengers 4, although it is a bit disappointing that Uatu or one of the other in his race have not shown up in the MCU yet.