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Death in Venice (California, that is)

And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:

And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it. — Matthew 7

No haut lit-ry tone like you get from those Thomas Mannish German romanticists… Nothing here that gives you the frisson of suffering and stifled sexuality from those out of fashion bards of disease and decay and decline…

No, nothing so pretty… nothing so lit-ry, so poetic.

Just the blunt wasting Godless emptiness and a long line of homeless tents in front of that part of Venice Beach that the homeless now use from sidewalk to high water as a latrine. A squatting place close to their tents or boxes or bags and above the high tide line. Out into the sands where surfers and bodybuilders once lolled when I lived in Venice there were only soft surprises coated with sand. Venice Beach: a beach that is now a gigantic human catbox with nobody to take out the litter.

No one
to witness
and adjust, no one to drive the car
— Williams

Living the dream, the California dream…. on such a wretched winter’s day.

California…. the Out of Business state.

As for Western Civilization… Well, we had some nice ideals…

The novella [Death In Venice] is rife with allusions from antiquity forward, especially to Greek antiquity and to German works (literary, art-historical, musical, visual) from the eighteenth century on.

The novella is intertextual, with the chief sources being first the connection of erotic love to philosophical wisdom traced in Plato’s Symposium and Phaedrus, and second the Nietzschean contrast between the god of restraint and shaping form, Apollo, and the god of excess and passion, Dionysus. The trope of placing classical deities in contemporary settings was popular at the time when Mann was writing Death in Venice.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Joe January 4, 2021, 8:18 PM

    Welcome to the land of “WE BE DEMOCRATS” “WE BE DUMB”.

  • andre January 4, 2021, 9:11 PM

    Policy of Mayor Garcetti is to have a “hands off” attitude with regard to the homeless. Therefore, around this once lively city, which is shut down for Covid, homeless people camp on the streets and walk around, nameless ghosts.

  • Casey Klahn January 4, 2021, 9:42 PM

    Cleaning up this mess will be a full time job for hundreds of people, in haz-mat suits. Water trucks with high pressure hoses, bleach, broom-sized brushes, etc. Fumigation methods, some burning. Where to put the people? They will need drug rehab (not permissive use), and places to stay. I suggest the hospital wards that are now organized for Covid could be re-purposed as drug and psych wards. Interim housing? Seize the A List houses that the mayor, his staff, and all of the city councilmen live in, and house the homeless there as a halfway house until we can get them on their feet (those that can stand on their feet). The politicians? Why, they’ll be in jail, of course.

    There, I fixed that.

  • Boat Guy January 5, 2021, 3:17 AM

    From your keyboard to God’s eyes, Casey. I’d love for those responsible to account for their actions, but I doubt it will ever be; the concept of justice is dying the death of a thousand cuts, the blades wielded by our “countrymen” and the Chinese to whom they’ve sold out. Bout all we can do is look to our own…

  • nunnya bidnez, jr January 5, 2021, 4:57 AM

    Casey wrote: “Seize the A List houses that the mayor, his staff, and all of the city councilmen live in, and house the homeless there ”
    We sort of did that here. The Hotel Lucerne on the upper west side of Manhattan which is/was a tourist hotel, was used to house the homeless during the pandemic. What the media never tells you is how many of them are actually released prisoners from Rikers Island (Rikers is only at 50% capacity now, in previous years before DeBlasio it was overcrowded).

    “150-person men’s shelter — planned for the former Park Savoy Hotel on West 58th Street (near Carnegie Hall) ….. [also] … the Hotel Belleclaire, on 76th Street and Broadway, and the Belnord, on West 87th, were recently converted into homeless shelters, with nearly 300 vagrants between them. Among the residents are six pedophiles and 10 sex offenders in total, including convicted rapists and child molesters, NY Post reported.”

  • Neuday January 5, 2021, 5:05 AM

    Some intoxicated immigrant who’s receiving social services taking a dump on a California beach is justice itself. Considering the voting patterns, welfare policies, judicial overreach and immigration policies of the past 50 years what other outcome could possibly be expected? This is only a way point; what do you think the destination holds?

  • Joe Krill January 5, 2021, 6:58 AM

    If you want to see the final chapter of what America will be like in 10 years, watch this. Not for the squeamish.

  • Sam L. January 5, 2021, 8:38 AM

    California: Land of nuts, and idiots, and recently, insane governors (I almost wrote “goversnorts”
    (Hmmmmm, I rather like that word I made up). They’re NOT “killing California softly”, they’re doing it the HARD way.

  • Jack January 5, 2021, 9:37 AM

    Potentially one of the most beautiful seascapes in the world that was transformed into a gigantic and open latrine and I have enough experience in life to positively say that ‘there, but for the Lord’s kindness and grace go any of us’. But to live like that regardless of location, takes a special kind of focus and determination that He did not place in us and people who stay there tossed the disinclination to do so years ago.

    The entire West Coast is the physical end of the road west in North America and perhaps significantly, its the perfect setting for outsiders to watch the sun set on the lives of all of the lost, insane, sex, alcohol and drug addicted, social misfits, pariahs and miscreants who wind up there.

    I’d like to ask something along the line of “what can we do for them?” but their condition is NOT the fault of society. There isn’t a city of any size in the country that does not have resources and programs to assist these types so factually and physically plenty has been offered. Part of the answer may lie in the fact or trend that the majority of those so burdened simply refuse either the opportunity for assistance or they lack the desire to try. Either answer diverts right back to the fact that people have free will to make those choices.

    I believe that at the bottom of it (for probably the majority of them) is a strong desire for death but they seem to lack the ability to do the deed to themselves for immediate closure and choose the slow road out instead. And for those folks, I don’t think that course in life can be redirected or mitigated.

  • James O'Neil January 5, 2021, 9:59 AM

    Watched Krill’s Liberia video link. America in ten years?

    Naw, The Camel and her frontman Sleazy Joe in the White House, lockdowns, throwdowns, travel restricted world wide, the People’s Republic of Europe, China rising, Oz & New Zealand the home of the knave, all huddling in place, face diapered and vaccinated weekly, the drudgers drudge and work is forbidden…
    could be the world in five years.

    Today’s special, long pig, do you prefer white meat or dark meat?

  • anonymous January 5, 2021, 10:07 AM

    we have a dear friend–an educated professional man. known him for 45 years. he married a woman from a very wealthy family. one day when he was out of town she bought a lovely lot on top of one of the isolated hills north of san francisco. they built their home there. over the years the extended family have also acquired property on top of the hill. they are all very safe and isolated. he has always been a california liberal. it makes him feel good because so much of the success his children and grandchildren have had are a result of his wife’s connections. day after the president was elected he became the most virulent, screaming, irrational member of the TDS group you can imagine. now hates all christians (they elected Trump). spent the next 3 years trying to come between my DH and myself. convinced my dh that he should not even read anything that puts forward information challenging the accepted democratic story on any subject. he is a classic example of cadillac liberal guilt. how can one so informed, so enlightened, become so blind to reality?

  • Tony January 5, 2021, 10:11 AM


    zero sympathy.

  • Teri Pittman January 5, 2021, 11:17 AM

    I have squatters on property I own. Code Enforcement told them all to leave, but of course, they are still there. The county will helpfully provide them with an attorney if needed. I get to pay for my own. I can’t clean the place up as long as they are there. No one seems concerned about the lack of sanitation. Local government seems to prefer that to having a quiet retired person living there.

  • ghostsniper January 5, 2021, 1:46 PM

    It’s difficult for people to squat in the middle of a firing range especially if you are firing gasoline melted styrofoam out of a cast iron pipe bazooka.

  • jwm January 5, 2021, 7:26 PM

    The video could serve as an unguided tour of my own mental landscape these days. I have come to the realization that the collapse is going to roll out whether I pay close attention to current events or not. I can’t stand to even watch. Ace, Z-Man, Porretto, Warren, Barnhardt, Severian, Grant, Briggs, Charlton, and a bunch of others I read, all range from pessimism to more pessimism. Except for Warren and Charlton. I’ve put them all on hold. This is the only place on the web I can stand.

    There’s a lotta “How we got in this mess” “Here’s how to fight it” “Now we start our own long march” “What we oughta’ do with the fuckers” “What I’m gonna do to the fuckers.” “What the fuckers are gonna do to us”
    The enemy, like so many of the people around us, is faceless, and nameless. A lab in China. Leaderless armies in our streets. Corporations. NGO’s. National Committees. A county official.
    The evil, the darkness, are diffuse and ubiquitous as smog.
    And everything that we are suffering right now was done deliberately with malice, destruction, and chaos the objectives. It is the Sorathic Evil that Charlton writes about; its only goal is destruction. There was nothing spontaneous about the rioting; it was carefully planned and staged. What kind of hideous evil invests billions of dollars, countless man-hours of highly skilled labor, and the most sophisticated technology ever developed to create a plague? Even Hitler would have said, “Fuck that shit.”
    It’s too much. I might as well fight a hailstorm.
    I have to fight the darkness where I meet it.
    I pray. I get out and walk or ride every day. Our bike gang rides almost every weekend despite the lockdown. And each day I get just enough humanity to keep me going. It’s like manna. It appears from nowhere, gives exactly enough nourishment for the one day, and is gone as quickly as it appeared. Sometimes it’s a smile, and a “Good morning” as I ride past an un-masked walker, or rider. Sometimes the gals at our local speakeasy (screw California taxes) weigh me a little fat on the flower. Sometimes it’s just sitting in the yard with the mid winter sun in my ear, and my Buddy the Cat stretched out in my lap. I find deep wells of pleasure in the small details of daily life. But the darkness threatens everything. Every day it gets closer.


  • Ann K. January 5, 2021, 8:11 PM

    Fuck California. Just don’t come to Texas.

  • Gordon Scott January 6, 2021, 8:27 AM

    Ah, Ann K., but they are. Elon Musk is moving his operations to Austin. I can’t say what his engineers think, but Elon is perfectly comfortable amongst the leftist elite. He’ll back the lefty every time. He’s working closely with your governor, but I’ll bet you he does not endorse him come next election.

    It is a valid argument that Mark Zuckerberg elected Joe Biden, by promoting Trump hatred and burying bad news about Joe on Facebook. It worked in Georgia also, by burying bad stories about Warnnock.

  • EX-Californian Pete January 6, 2021, 10:16 AM

    Venice Beach. (sigh)

    Back in the 70’s and 80’s, it was great place to take a date, or find one among the gazillions of bikini-clad, slim hotties that lined the shore or walked the Boardwalk. Also a great destination for a Harley rider- talking Sunset Bl. from Hollywood to the beach, then down PCH to Venice.

    But look at it now- a PERFECT example of what Liberalism does to each and every city it infects- turning it into a 3rd world cesspool that can only be “cleaned up” by something thermonuclear, a huge Tsunami, or a seismic event over 8.0.

    Of course, the above statement also describes L.A., the Bay Area, the San Fernando Valley, most of Orange County, and about 75% of the state of California.
    At least the town of Paradise got a proper cremation and funeral to mark its demise. And thank God I didn’t end up being part of those ashes.

    To Ann K.- I agree with your first sentence, but not your second one.
    Eleven of my EX-California friends have now moved to Texas- ALL of them hardcore Conservatives.
    And all of them are professionals with job skills ranging from Engineers to EMTs. Maybe they will help offset the gazillion illegal aliens and Liberal scumbags that are already living in Texas.

    Something else they can offer Texas that you may have not considered- the actual firsthand experience of witnessing the destruction and ruin that Liberalism brings, and the knowledge of how to expose it and fight it.

    If a CA Liberal moves into your neighborhood, just do what we do in my RED Midwest state- make them as uncomfortable as possible. Do NOT use their services or business, (or allow them into YOUR businesses) notify EVERYONE that a “subhuman Libtard” has moved in, refuse to talk with or even remotely associate with them, surround their home with “MAGA,” “2A,” or NRA signs, and as my Uncle used to say, “deal with them like they’re termites.”

    Even the stupidest Liberal will eventually figure out that when they are outnumbered and habitually treated with hostility, that they need to move elsewhere.

  • Joe Loveto January 7, 2021, 1:20 PM

    There is a recent story of a mayor who lived two weeks as a homeless person to discover what they really needed, what was helpful to them. He said most were addicted to drugs and they expected others to feed and clothe them while they sat around shooting up and getting high. The revelation of this shook up a lot of people who said the homeless problem was much to complex for such simple explanations…Selah.