September 16, 2011

The Vambies Among Us

"I'm from the Government. I'm here to help myself to your brainz and blooood!"

"Monsters! Monsters of the Id:" It’s a peculiar technique of critique to use the disposable products of our popular culture to craft deeper observations on our present era. Efforts to reveal our culture at large by extrapolating them from current films are a popular exercise -- not to mention a drop-dead easy manner of making points without any larger areas of knowledge having to intervene. Why study history when you can just stream in a slick selection of pop-cult classics from Netflix and hose down your mind?

Recently touted as “the weirdest graph you'll see all week,” that fountain of cultural commentary, Cracked came up with 6 Mind-Blowing Ways Zombies and Vampires Explain America asserting,

Here's the weirdest graph you'll see all week. It's graphing the popularity of zombie movies versus vampire movies, split out by whether the president at the time was a Republican or a Democrat. There are exceptions, but in general when a Republican is in office, it's all about zombies. When it's a Democrat, it's all about vampires.


Alas it wasn’t the weirdest graph I’ve seen all week. Mostly because I’ve seen it before. Many times, such as in 2009 at The San Diego Union-Tribune’s ”With Obama election comes the return of the vampire.” I’ve seen it before 2009 as well but can’t be troubled to make a list. Everything in our age scrolls off our screens, is forgotten, and floats away on the waters of oblivion. That is why “all the news just repeats itself.”

In a culture in which, for some reason, the youth continue to feast upon horror flicks of increasing depravity safe in the conviction of their own immortality, it’s no wonder it’s always Vampires vs. Zombies in America. In it’s way it’s a comfortable assumption since it assumes and extends the two-party system myth that obfuscates our real political dilemmas. But what happens when the standard cultural meme of Vampires vs. Zombies suffers a deviation? What happens when real deviancy takes control?

That’s when you get a new monster; a political hybrid that popular culture has not quite assimilated. That’s the real monster we have stalking the political stage of our present day; the Vampire Zombie (The Vambie) -- something that is trying to eat brains and suck blood at the same time.

We used to call this political aberration “Fascism,” but now it goes by a much more neutral term, “embedded bureaucracy.” It’s what happens when the appointed aliens such as, say, Van Jones, are taken out of play but leave their infected spawn behind. Once inserted into the body of the host with the ovipositor of the original alien, the spawn grow and fester and replicate. Once the Vambie (politely known as the Czar) is in place, the infection is irreversible by normal political means. This is true even if the original Vambie is destroyed. The sub-Vambies become the “Left Behinds” even after the rapture of the reversible presidential election takes place.

It’s not the Czars nor the Secretaries of Defense/Education/EPA or what have you that continue the eating of brains and the sucking of blood. It is the horror of the now embedded functionaries, the Vambie parasites, that continue to have their parasitical way with the host nation.

Garlic won’t kill them, nor sunlight/transparency, nor a stake through the heart, nor a shotgun blast to the brainpan. They are the Vambies and only a refining fire has any hope of reducing their legions. To paraphrase John Gilmore’s famous observation about the Internet, “The Vambies see elections as ‘system damage’ and route around them.”

The real horror show of our time is not in the theaters on the weekends. It’s in the millions of offices in the state and federal buildings that more and more resemble scary mediaeval castles with their guarded entrances and their thick towering concrete walls with slim windows ideal for marksmen with machine guns to set up fields of fire. In those offices over the decades yet to come the Vambies of Obama, and the Vambies of those that came before, will measure out your lives while eating your brains and sucking your blood. If you endeavor to cut off their ghastly food supply be ready to see them swarm into the streets in SEIU t-shirts. In that garb it would at least be easy to spot them.

Absent such signs be aware that with every passing day of America trapped in the O-Zone the Vambie numbers will increase and you will need the magic sunglasses from the cult horror classic, “They Live” in order to pick them out in a crowd. Until then keep your powder dry and stock on torches and pitchforks. Park the bubblegum and remember, "It's only a movie."


Posted by Vanderleun at September 16, 2011 11:01 AM
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

For just a moment, I was going to say "vambie" sounds too soft to be scary. But of course, that's why it's a perfect fit; the vambie always looks doe-eyed and innocent, friendly, even. After all, it is "here to help," and so millions upon millions have invited it in and given it free rein of their homes and hearts' blood...

Posted by: Julie at September 16, 2011 1:35 PM

Great movie. When the hero first makes his shocking discovery it sends a chill down your spine, just like the real life discovery that organized zompires are sucking the lifeblood out of us as they steer the machine right over the falls.

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