The Fish
for 4 May 1999. Updated every WEEKDAY.
Suck Staff

Joey Anuff
Joey Anuff
Editor in Chief


Terry Colon
Terry Colon
Art Director


[the fixin' pixie... ]
Emily Hobson
Production Manager
and Rhythm Guitar


Heather Havrilesky
Heather Havrilesky
Senior Editor


[Ian Connelly]
Ian Connelly
Marketing Manager


[Copy Edit]
Erica Gies
Merrill Gillaspy

Copy Editors

Suck Alumni
Suck Alumni Text

Carl Steadman
Carl Steadman


Ana Marie Cox
Ana Marie Cox
Executive Editor


Sean (Duuuuude) Welch
Sean Welch


Owen Thomas
Owen Thomas
Copy Editor


T. Jay Fowler

Production Manager

& Ass Kicker


[yes, it's a plunger. i'll l
eave the rest up to your imagination ... ]
Erin Coull
Production Manager


Monte Goode
Monte Goode
Ghost in the Machine


Matt Beer
Matt Beer
Development Manager

Operation Distant Thunder

Given that Richard Brautigan
is the most underappreciated
American author of the 20th
century, and despite the fact
that I would hardly expect
someone who writes earnestly
about foreign policy to be
capable of appreciating art,
humor me, and allow his work
a closer reading than today's
little sound bite. "All
Watched Over" is not a
utopian vision of the future,
but rather a utopian vision
of the present. The idea is
to erase the distinction
between nature and
technology. The "machines" of
the last line already exist.
He might intentionally court
your misinterpretation, but
that's just to prove a point.
To get a clearer idea of how
Brautigan relates to
technology, read the poem,
"The Pill Versus the
Springhill Mine Disaster." I
think you will find it
several orders of magnitude
less simplistic than
(which I hear was pretty big
in 1789).

Demmy Rooster

I disagree with your reading
of "All Watched Over," but
then I'm not capable of
appreciating art. Teach me to

Awash in watermelon sugar,

Dumb, artless fuck

Fish With Letter Icon

Dear AB:

Nice column. Keep up the good
work, and remember your
namesake's dictum: "Cannon:
an instrument used in the
rectification of national

John A. Russell


Ah, yes. And a projectile is
"the final arbiter in
international disputes."
("Its capital defect is that
it requires personal
attendance at the point of
propulsion.") Wonder what
Ambrose Bierce would have
made of million-dollar cruise
missiles smacking into wooden
barracks and tents in the


Ambrose Beers

Fish With Letter Icon

Dear Not-Ambrose-Bierce:

An observation: Fortunately,
the president appears to
recognize that his magick is
limited, so there's also a
fallback. "When faced before
with problems that bombing
failed to fix," The
Washington Post
explains, "Clinton has tended
to respond by redefining his

His magick, to the contrary,
is still capable of ending
this world once and for all.
The real problem we face is
fighting a war with both arms
tied behind our backs.
Fearing Russian intervention
because, as you point out,
Clinton's war effort is
spineless, we use none of our
good, destructive weapons. If
we napalmed the Belgrade
daily rock concert, or
better, dropped a 5,000-pound FAE
(fuel-air explosive, read:
powdered aluminum) on the
outskirts of the city, we'd
clear 20 square miles of life
and 10 square miles of buildings
with one non-nuclear warhead.
We have enough of these to
destroy every major city in
southeastern Europe; if we
withdraw and allow the
massacre of civilians to go
unpunished, it is only for
our lack of stomach. I hope
someday we will learn to
punish those who support
oppressive regimes, and not
just the regime itself - I
would love to turn on the
news to hear we had killed
30,000 civilians in
Yugoslavia, that none would
dare support the monsters
this time.

Bottom line: "Without
hypocrisy nothing is

- Paul Sullivan, On Ethics


Rev. Paul Sullivan, Eternal

Sage and High Arbiter

Thank you for reminding me
that people like you exist. I
invite you to share your
theories on the streets of

Ambrose Beers

Fish With Letter Icon


Your description of stealth
technology as the
no-commitment weapon reminded
me of a very, very short story
by Tuli Kupferberg (late of
the Fugs). It was in an SF
anthology edited, I think, by
Judith Merrill in the late
'60s. The story was about an
H-bomb who wished he were a
bullet. When the other
H-bombs told him, "You're
crazy! You can kill thousands
of people all at once," he
replied, "Yeah, I know, but I
miss the personal touch." We
have lost the personal touch
when it comes to modern
warfare. If people had to
actually realize that yes,
war is about killing people,
collateral damage
notwithstanding, maybe we
would be less likely to
rattle our invisible sabers.

Neal Johnson

Yep. Neat irony: The more we
distance ourselves from
violence, the more we deal it
out. The notion of restraint
leads us into greater
brutality. Fun!

Thanks for the message,

Ambrose Beers

Fish With Letter Icon
From Suck, 20
April 1999:

Violence, we've decided, is a
message that we send when we
wish to sue for peace.

From CNN's report on the
Littleton school shooting:

Clinton also said children all
over America need to be
reassured of their safety.
"We also have to take this
moment once again to hammer
home to all the children of
America that violence is
wrong," the president said

"And parents should take this
moment to ask what else they
can do to shield our children
from violent images and
experiences that warp young
perceptions and obscure the
consequences of violence - to
show our children by the
power of our own example how
to resolve conflicts

Satire once again proves
obsolete in the '90s.
"Hammer" home the message
that violence is wrong?
Especially when images
"obscure the consequences" -
like, say, how bombs hitting
military targets might, you
know, kill people? My mind,
dizzy from White House spin,

Dr. Robert Seulowitz
Not insane! <>

"Violence is wrong." Ah, great
moral leadership from a great
moral leader. Testify, Mr.
President. The powerful
pro-school violence lobby
will crucify him for this.

Only two years until we get a
shot at electing a real
president of some kind.

Sending a message,

Ambrose Beers

Fish With Letter Icon

Operation Distant Thunder

Sure, life is simple. There
are no institutions, only
individuals. Cops always get
their man, and juries never
make mistakes. (After all,
they are all individuals, are
they not?) I suppose
organized crime and lunatic
political organizations will
now all fall over after that
stunning display of
overpowering logic. The
victims in Ireland should
rest easy knowing that
institutions could never have
played a part in their messy
demise, only crazy
individuals. The Jews of
Europe can feel better
knowing it wasn't an
institution of any kind that
erased a significant part of
their race, only a huge
collection of individuals who
just woke up one day and
decided that gas and ovens
were a great thing.


As gently as possible, one
simple question: What the
fuck are you talking about?

Ambrose Beers

Fish With Letter Icon

Hi. I know your not supposed
to start a E-Mail with a
question, but what kind of
magazine are you? First you
name it "Suck," like there
aren't enough bad influences
for kids out there, and
second you have a picture of
a old lady giving Hitler
cookies on your Web Site! Now
your'e picturing the Nazis as
a kind giving group?
Brilliant! And third you get
a very kind letter from a
nice old lady and all you do
is edit it and critises it?
Now I know where you got
your'e newspapers name!
Because it "Sucks"!


Yes, we've probably made
quite a few innocent little
children turn Nazi. Good

The poor little dears.

Mildly suggesting you learn
to spell,

Ambrose Beers

Fish With Letter Icon

So what's an Ambrose beer and
where is the brewery? Web

Randy Stiffler

The brewery is, um, on my
breath. At least this is what
the cops always say. For a
Web site, maybe try

Ambrose Beers

Fish With Letter Icon

"... and to knock Saddam
Hussein from power (whoops)

You may recall it was Bush
who went into Iraq with guns
a-blazin'. Not that I care if
you want to ramble on about
Clinton's deficiencies (oh,
Canada ...), but that point
did seem to stick out a bit.

David Connell

George Bush left the White
House six years ago. We're
still dropping bombs on Iraq.
It's probably a stretch to blame
the ongoing campaign on ol'

Ambrose Beers

Fish With Letter Icon

I would love to write a
long-winded, pious rant about
the mean superpower blowing
the crap out of faraway
people and destroying their
livelihoods. We see very
little blood, and war becomes
established as yet another
TV viewing option. Out in the
sticks, of course, where our
shiny high-tech toys find
their targets, whole cultures
are condemned to decades of
abject economic struggle and
chronic hopelessness: no more
drinking water, sewers,
electricity, jobs, homes.

What will we learn from
Kosovo and Desert Storm/Fox?
To live together in peace? To
promote the humanitarian
ideals we all presumably hold
dear? No. We will make our
weapons smaller, stealthier,
and able to deploy in the worst
weather conditions. And
above all, we will cram those
little silver peckers with
enough computing horsepower
to look the enemy up in a
goddamn phone book (any
language), find him even if
he is hiding under the
remains of his bed, and make
some effort to enter his
rectum before blasting him
and everything within a 100-
meter radius into gravel.

Heinz Hemken
San Diego, California

Ah, yes: Getting deep into
the enemy rectum and
"blasting." There are videos
on the market that will
satisfy your cravings, Heinz.
Good luck to you.

Ambrose Beers

Fish With Letter Icon

 The Shit
Left for Dead in Malaysia, Neil Hamburger, Drag City, 1999
The Pyrotechnic Insanitarium: American Culture on the Brink, Mark Dery, Grove/Atlantic, 1999
Crazy from the Heat, David Lee Roth, Hyperion, 1998
Keep It Like a Secret, Built to Spill, WEA/Warner Brothers, 1999
Abbott's Pizza Company, near the corner of Abbott-Kinney and California, Venice Beach, Los Angeles (delivery hours limited)
Piper at the Gates of Dawn, Pink Floyd, CD remaster, EMI 1994
Motorhead, CD remasters, all
Det Som Engang Var, Burzum, Misanthropy, 1998
Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park, Nashville, Tennessee
A History of the Modern Fact, Mary Poovey, University of Chicago Press, 1998
V., Thomas Pynchon, HarperCollins Publishers, 1999
The Coffee Mill, Emeq Refaim, Jerusalem, Israel
The Salesman and Bernadette, Vic Chesnutt, Capricorn Records, 1998
Good Morning Spider, Sparklehorse, Cema/Capitol, 1999
Third Floor, Anderson Building, Los Angeles County Museum of Art

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