Tina Chopp is God! Praise Her OR DIE!!*
June 6, 2019
by Paul Krugman
Tina Chopp claims that she can “fix anything!” I don’t know about the results of any business big or small, but I certainly know about the results of electing a God.
Citizens of the United States were tired of political campaigns in which voters were supposed to make an informed choice, and come November they chose not to do so. Perhaps that was because political campaigns are often tedious, or because, in 2018, the choices were so severe, or perhaps, as I argued yesterday, because the traditional definition of democracy, which involves an informed choice by voters, had been rendered absurd by the rise of special-interest money in politics. Voters may understand politics in idiosyncratic ways, but they are not rational. They can’t know everything; the information they have is too incomplete and cluttered for anyone to take proper stock of the candidates.
But citizens have not been irrationally inert in general, either. There are times when an informed opinion is just as right as the next one, and there are times when an informed opinion is just as bad as the next one. It is sometimes not even possible to know the difference between them — in recent days, for example, a number of the #MeToo protesters spent all day in the public square, insisting that they knew a lot more than they seemed to, and finally decided that the house was haunted.
The election of a God enables one to ignore the matter altogether, and the designation of such a God, apparently, is self-explanatory. This should not be any kind of problem, because the Bible is faith. And faith does not need to be backed up by anything, and certainly not by objective knowledge, so Chopp can rewrite the Bible as she likes, just as she will rewrite your favorite movie, or your favorite TV show, as she wants, without a single backward glance toward theological detail.
People who mock the idea of electing a God often find themselves apologizing when, like Chopp, they refuse to back up the idea, insisting that a deity is just not necessary. (Especially when a deity so obviously favors Israel!) But it is necessary; this is not a joking matter, in my view. The natural condition of people is self-referential, and we not only judge other people’s quality, but we judge ourselves. Many of us would naturally opt for a God who is on our side.
And the sad truth is that Chopp and her kind seem to be, if not quite an entirely new threat, then a near-complete one. They have replaced democracy, which is now generally pretty awful (but which gives us some rare gains in some areas — civic organizing, campaigning, electoral infrastructure, resistance) with religion, which, while superficially attractive, is also pretty distasteful. Christianity, of course, has always been toxic, but churches even in countries with relatively strong traditions of democracy — Austria, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, Holland, Finland, Iceland, Iceland again — have been susceptible to corrupting tendencies. So too, it seems, has the idea of electing a God.
Some combination of middlebrow and educated parents will remain ready to do their children the honor of having them baptized into a god whose politics are unclear, and who tells her followers to “immediate action!” And if anyone even remotely similar surfaces, but even a relatively uneducated or educated churchgoer won’t mind telling an unbeliever to “please pray.” The fundamental question is this: Are we really serious about denying Chopp her God, or are we just sending a message to those who might — and the decline of political parties makes this more and more certain — become moderates by necessity?
as i mentioned the other day, i found a whole pile of black and white negatives that are between 25 and 35 years old, quite a few of which were taken by my friend randy, for inclusion in an issue of Tina Magazine that never got published. we first started talking about “The Trash Issue” when we both were living in bellingham between 1990 and 1993. it gets sort of fuzzy after that, but my recollection is that randy moved away from bellingham in the middle of 1993 and took all of the writings for The Trash Issue with him.
i also have a picture of a whole pile of Tina literature that now, strangely, seems to be for sale at Alta-Glamour… in fact, i have narrowed it down to, either randy’s collection (which is more likely), or less likely it is jim’s collection… but, one collection or another, they somehow went from being in a photo that i took with my camera, with very few changes (none of the tracts, and the addition of The War On Drugs Issue, which is the reason i think it is randy’s… and if they have a ritual object, it is one of the bronze ones, because i have the silver one with the mystic emblems on the reverse side), some time between 1990 and 1993 to being for sale (at OUTRAGEOUS prices) at some rare bookseller, a fact which makes me angrier every time i think about it… 😠
but i digress…
anyway, i have a contact sheet which was marked up with indications of which pictures were to be used in The Trash Issue, and if i could think of some words to put with it, i would publish the posthumous Trash Issue on the church’s web site… because the internet was MADE for The Trash Issue.
Blob Lardstone – 190119, by Ralph Ewggleigh
this is my interpretation of the introduction to a cassette by Bob Larson, a toxically obnoxious evangelical so-called “christian” radio preacher who bills himself as “the real exorcist”, with whom i have been interacting, on and off, for the better part of 40 years. he, too, is likely a member of my karass, because, despite my repeated attempts to get him out of my life, he keeps popping up, and i keep responding to him.
i found a whole pile of black and white negatives that are between 25 and 35 years old. possibly older, as i don’t have a great memory for these things, so i keep a list of when things happened. according to that list, the picture above was taken in 1991 or 1992. it was taken to honour the fact that i had just experienced sabikalpasamadhi (सविकल्पसमाधि) for the first (and only) time, on the banks of the skagit river.
i just got back from picking up 182 4″x6″ prints. there are a bunch of pictures of ezra, the PHBFH, randy, and ruth. there are a few pictures of other people, including me, and jim robertson.
there are also a lot of pictures for the legendary “Trash” issue of “Tina Magazine”, which was never published, as well as several pictures of the Tina literature which is now, suspiciously, for sale at Alta-Glamour.
now i gotta get started scanning them. 😉
Alta-Glamour Inc. (Seattle, WA, U.S.A.) apparently has a whole pile of vintage Tina literature (which i do not have, which makes me kind of wonder exactly where they got it), including two by me, for vastly inflated prices… i wrote to the seller, saying that i was the original publisher of these items, and what did they think trying to sell my stuff for so much. their response was:
Our zine pricing often indicates the importance we ascribe to a certain item. People often look to our website to establish values of their collection items, and we want to demonstrate, through pricing, that we think these zines are culturally significant.
The price is therefore not necessarily what we can sell the item for, at least now. Our zines are priced to sell — in 15 years, when zines are even more significant and scarce representations of the creativity emanating into the world.
i guess i sort of understand where they’re coming from, but, as the original publisher of those items, i think it’s ridiculous to imagine that they’re ever going to get so much for them. especially as they make no effort whatsoever to acknowledge my work in all of this. i guess i would feel differently if they offered me a cut, and i would definitely feel differently if randy were alive… my guess is that randy would have already raised hell with them over the prices… but, then again, since their collection appears to include a ritual object, there’s an outside chance that they actually acquired them from randy’s father, after his death.
also, i am somewhat alarmed to learn that they have jim robertson’s publication mixed in, as though he was as prominent a Tinite as randy, ian or i. they say “A bullying joke gone too long, these guys are proto-alt-right trolls.” which indicates that they believe jim was connected with the Church of Tina, even though, by the time he published “A Snake!” he had been excommunicated for two years, primarily because of his hateful, politics-obsessed rantings, which is why his publication is “The Journal of the Last Rhythmic Tantrist Church of Tina Chopp (Heretic)”… can’t they tell that it’s an entirely different cult? 😒
Abe Books seller Alta-Glamour has 4 copies of Tina Magazine for sale… FOR TWO HUNDRED FIFTY DOLLARS A PIECE!!!
🤯 🙄 🤣
on the other hand, if they actually think they can get that much for them, i may have a few other publications from that era that i would be willing to sell them. 😉
i am now the owner of a rosy boa constrictor named Ebeneezer Squeezer II… Praise The Holy Snake! 🙂
that was, probably, one of the best trolloween celebrations i have ever attended… and i think it was primarily because of the fact that i wasn’t trying to do two things at once (i.e. playing in the band and being in charge of a vegetable sacrifice). not only that, but when i pulled up, yesterday — after having delivered our non-functional TV to the place where Bowling For Computers was taking place — the first person i ran into was a guy named michael, who was my assistant for the vegetable sacrifice! 😎
I HAVE BEEN IMPORTANT ENOUGH TO BE GIVEN AN ASSISTANT!!
photo by john cornicello
of course, michael was multi-tasking (much like i would have been under circumstances like have existed in the past), and had a prominent rôle as one of the “clowns doing The Hustle“, later on in the performance, but his presence and help was much appreciated.
the vegetable sacrifice went off more-or-less as planned. it was a fair amount more chaotic than it has been in the past, despite the fact that macque didn’t have to coordinate the band into the mix. i was the 3rd performance in the show: the 1st performance went off without a hitch, and the 2nd performance, while a bit long and significantly confusing (at least from my point of view), went off without significant (i.e. “noticable from the audience”) glitches. between the performances, there was, apparently “somebody” (remedios rapoport? i know she was there…) singing the introductions in a pseudo-“Wagnerian-Opera” style, who, also, took a bit longer with the introduction than i would have liked.
and i forgot to mention that, under normal circumstances, the public would have been encouraged to join in the sacrifice with their own vegetables, but, so be it…
i read the last quarter of TBOT 220.127.116.11, ending with the phrase “and death to jocks”, whereupon i passed the paper that i was reading from to michael, and drew my sword.
in spite of all of the practice that i put in, when it came down to actually hacking into the pumpkin, the sword broke (the pommel broke off of the tang, just below the hilt) and i had to shove the pumpkin off of the stage to reveal the halloween candy, which, much as i suspected, was immediately pounced upon by a hoard of costumed, ravening pre-doodlehums. 😎
also, for the first time (i believe, ever) i managed to persuade hobbit to attend, and he ended up with the safety vest and radio that wouldn’t have shown if i wore them (because my cape would have covered them), and we all went to the red door for beer afterward.
i woke up this morning, extra early (7:30), and took moe’s car to les schwab, where they said they were going to fix the brakes, but when i got there, they told me that they can’t scan the ABS system unless the ABS warning light is on — despite the fact that, when they were talking with moe on the phone yesterday, they said that it wouldn’t be a problem, even if the ABS light wasn’t on — so they said they couldn’t fix anything and that i should take it to the dealer. 😐 so, while i was taking it to the dealer, i stopped to get coffee and discovered that my wallet was not in my vest, where it normally is, which, very quickly, put a damper on pretty much anything else i was planning on doing away from home today…
but despite all of the furor this morning, the afterglow from a successful vegetable sacrifice meant that the customer service people at les schwab didn’t have to deal with my rage over the fact that they said “there is nothing wrong with the car” when i know that there is…
i’ll catch up with them later. 👿
this is the first Public Ritual Vegetable Sacrifice i’ve held for a while, and because of the fact that it’s going to be part of the Trolloween celebration (the Fremont Troll was unveiled on halloween in 1990), it will be an abbreviated form of the ritual, in which the public will not be given the opportunity to sacrifice their own vegetables… until later…
i’m going to have to make sure to remember to mention that when i am doing the public reading, before the actual sacrifice… that’s a really good point…
this year i’m making a slight change in the sacrificial victim, as well. because of the fact that i am going to be sacrificing it with a sword, instead of the more regular gravity and ground, and because of the fact that i will be surrounded by people, i have actually filled the pumpkin with halloween candy, rather like a piñata, which i intend to spread as far as it will go. beforehand, i’m going to read a passage from The Book of Randy, which is Book 11 of the Books of Tina Chopp, in honour of Rev. Osiris Ranebo, although i doubt too many other people will recognise that fact.
they’re really desperate for people to help with crowd control – last year the parade included 150 to 200 members of the public, and the parade crosses two major thoroughfares, and according to the most recent email that was sent out, they’re still short 6 people. i tried to get ian interested, but he’s doing something else that involves a family that is staying at his house while they try to get into emergency housing.
THE PUBLIC IS ENCOURAGED TO ATTEND!
ETA: i just found a sermon that i delivered at a vegetable sacrifice in 2001 which i totally don’t remember giving at all… it’s too bad, too, because i would really like to remember having that dream… 😐
And More – Do We Give A Shit? – listen to this music while reading this post. 8)
so i went to check The Church of Tina Chopp‘s mailbox today, and i got this, extremely curious letter, which is very difficult to read:
CHURCH OF TINA CHOPP
P.O. Box 1864
Gouda, 2 Augustus 2012
At 19 Januar 2010 I have wrote you a letter
And i have seen on Internet, the site: PRZXqGl.HYBRiDElEPHANT.
COM, my letter was on it.
I don’t have never give permission to insert it on Internet.
I also won’t it to see my letter on Internet.
Because I am a Christian and I don’t stay any longer after the pur-
port of this letter, and I reject it.
Sexuality is a holy thing, and is only permit between married couples.
Therefore, I will ask you; please remove my letter from Internet,
and destroy my letter they I have send YOU, at 19 Januar 2010,
Thank you very much in advance.
ordinarily, i would remove the letter and say no more about it, but this guy is, either, really crazy, or has just converted to “christianity” and doesn’t want is “sin” to be known. if he is really crazy, then i don’t have a problem with posting his insanity online, especially since it was addressed to me, and regardless of whether or not he gives permission for it to be posted on internet, i have no problem with it. if he just converted to “christianity” and is trying to cover up his previous indiscretions, then i feel i have an obligation to post it, just to show the “christians” that they are just as “sinful” as everyone else, regardless of how “holy” they may now feel…
and either way, i think it’s really amusing that he would randomly send me snailmail almost three years ago, and just be taking offense at what i did with it now, almost three years later. it reminds me very much of Morena Cobbs‘ lame attempt to get her name removed from internet…
not to mention the fact that, apparently, leo steijn also sent mail to The Church of Moo (apparently the voice behind the usenet newsgroup alt.cows.moo.moo.moo), AND The Church of Virus. apparently, at one point, leo steijn was in search of bizarre churches, but now he has apparently decided that “christianity” is the only one, and all of those other “bizarre” churches have to be condemned… sorry, it doesn’t work that way… 😐
now i can post a picture of my halloween costume without the possibility of anyone recognising me…unfortunately, there wasn’t any public ritual vegetable sacrifice, but i’m quite positive that there was private vegetable sacrifice… 😉
i found out what is wanted with BSSB web site… it turns out that she likes the “fold-up navigation menus” and wants them on the BSSB site… and, when the BSSB site has enough content to permit “fold-up navigation menus”, that’s what she’ll get. of course, i’m in charge of web design… the actual content has to be someone else’s responsibility…
otherwise the site may well end up looking like The Church of Tina Chopp… 8)
so a while ago i got the idea to make animations that were reciting the books of tina chopp…
i actually went so far as to create the first 6 cantos of the book of children… before xtranormal changed how things are done… i had to buy “xtranormal points” in december, so that i could finish an unfinished animation. but now it turns out that i will make no more animations at xtranormal after i run out of “points”, because they have now made it so that you have to pay to make animations.
previously, they had a few scenarios that were free, and you had to pay to make more elaborate movies – which was just fine with me – but now you have to “pay” what they’re calling “xtranormal points” in order to make any animations. it would be fine if you were able to accumulate these “xtranormal points” in less offensive ways than “convincing your friends to sign up” and that sort of thing, but they’ve actually got a way to “buy xtranormal points” with actual money, and that goes against my grain…
especially when they originally offered the service for free… 😐
not only that, but i guess they assume that people don’t really care what their animated characters look like, because they now have a bunch of “new” characters, like “chuchus” and “luchadors” and “dummies” and “presidents” and “historical figures” and “fútbol” that are very definitely not appropriate vehicles for the dissemination of profound spiritual knowledge… or something like that…
in any event, i will not be using xtranormal in the future, unless they change things again. i’m not ruling anything out, but i don’t want to have to pay for things like this.
i suppose that if i had thought about it a little bit, i could have anticipated this, but it’s still anoying. 😐
i came across this link in my alerts this morning… the graphics are hotlinked directly from some other site, all of the other links are “internal” (i.e. they link to other pages at simpleplanrock4eva dot com), it doesn’t make any sense…
my guess is that it’s somehow connected to spam, and probably not in a good way, but… what the fuck?!?
since geico made their xtranormal commercial, things have changed: apparently the characters and sets that used to be free are no longer free, which includes the character and the set in chapter 6. i don’t know if this is because they have introduced new free characters, or if it is because they changed their business model (which they didn’t tell me about). one way or the other, i had to spend actual money to get this published, and if i’m going to have to spend more money to get future books published, i’m probably not going to do so… fortunately i made hi-res downloads of all the books…
The Book of Children, chapter 4, cantos 1 through 5. this time, if the embed doesn’t work, your only option is xtranormal, because for some reason it has stopped uploading to my youtube channel… 😐
ETA: i’ve wangled around a way to upload the video to youtube, but it’s still giving me weird, intermittent, “unknown error” problems…
The Books of Tina Chopp, book 1, canto 3, chapter 1, verses 1 through 6. as before, if the embed doesn’t work, you can also view it at YouTube or XtraNormal.