Author Archive | Russ Kick

Flash Wisdom on Authority

[From the new disinformation® book by Russ Kick, Flash Wisdom: A Curated Collection of Mind-Blowing, Perspective-Changing Quotes]

Government, the legal system, school, organized religions, the media, corporations, various economic concerns . . . there are a number of powerful, pervasive institutions that want to control you. It’s either their overt purpose or a by-product of their very existence. In order to not disintegrate, they must have at least a piece of you, if not all of you, for at least part of your life, if not all of it. They might not have been created for nefarious purposes, but this is nonetheless the effect they often have. They flatten and deaden. They exploit and punish. They’re never happy with the amount of power they have; they always seek to expand the breadth of their reach and the strength of their grip. This has not gone unnoticed by many of the finest and bravest minds throughout history.… Read the rest

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Russ Kick’s ‘Death Poems’

9781938875045

[disinfo ed.’s note: this is an exclusive excerpt from the new disinformation® book by Russ Kick, Death Poems: Classic, Contemporary, Witty, Serious, Tear-Jerking, Wise, Profound, Angry, Funny, Spiritual, Atheistic, Uncertain, Personal, Political, Mythic, Earthy, and Only Occasionally Morbid]

Introduction

Every poem [is] an epitaph. – T.S. Eliot

Name any well-known poet from any age, any country. He or she wrote at least one poem about death, most likely several poems. I can basically guarantee it. Death is one of the most common themes in the entirety of poetry. Whether it’s a lamentation for a loved one or a public figure, a reflection on their own upcoming appointment with the grave, a meditation on the nature of death, or perhaps what happens afterward, every poet has found inspiration—sometimes welcome, often not—in the fate we all have in common. It provides a lens through which to examine life, changing everything else by its looming, inevitable presence.… Read the rest

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Dante’s Inferno In ‘The Graphic Canon’

Graphic Canon Panel[Disinfo ed.’s note: This week I had the distinct pleasure of meeting up with Russ Kick for the launch of his epic series of classic literature anthologized in graphic form, The Graphic Canon. Although it’s not published by disinformation, I’d encourage all disinfonauts to check it out; the quality is self-evident through and through. Russ and his publisher, Dan Simon, kindly agreed to let us give you another taste (also check out The Book of Revelation if you missed it previously).]

The Inferno is far and away the most well known, influential part of The Divine Comedy. No one can resist the inventiveness and appropriateness of the punishments suffered by sinners. Hypocrites wear outwardly beautiful cloaks that are lined with lead. Fortune-tellers have their heads on backward. Gluttons lie in putrid mud like pigs. Those who were violent against others boil in a river of blood. Flatterers, meanwhile, spend eternity submerged in shit.… Read the rest

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The Book Of Revelation In ‘The Graphic Canon’

Graphic Canon[disinfo ed.’s note: Russ Kick, the first disinformation author has, gasp, written not one but three books for another publisher (it’s okay, we like them), the first of which is coming out on May 22nd: The Graphic Canon, Vol. 1: From the Epic of Gilgamesh to Shakespeare to Dangerous Liaisons. Russ and Seven Stories Press have kindly given us a sneak preview.]

The final book of the New Testament, and thus the Christian Bible as a whole, the Book of Revelation just might be the strangest work in the entire literary canon. Populated by the Whore of Babylon, the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, the Beast, a lamb with seven horns and seven eyes, locusts with human faces, a seven-headed dragon, a false prophet, Satan, angels blowing trumpets of destruction, and other bizarre characters, this series of four visions has been interpreted as a literal guide to the fiery, blood-soaked end of the world as we know it and the establishment of Christ’s 1,000-year kingdom on Earth, as a coded guide to spiritual development, and as an intense mushroom trip.… Read the rest

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God’s Name Is “Jealous”

TimmyThe following is another chapter from my disinformation book, 50 Things You’re Not Supposed to Know: Volume 2, published in 2004. For more on me go to The Memory Hole or follow me @RussKick on Twitter.

There’s an old joke that says God’s name is Harold, as in: “Our Father, who art in Heaven, Harold be thy name…”

The strange thing is, that’s not too much off the mark, only the truth is even weirder. The Lord does indeed have a name, kind of like Andrew or Beth or José.

It’s right there in the Bible, at Exodus 34:14. Moses has trudged up Mount Sinai with a second pair of stone tablets, on which God will write the Ten Commandments. Moses and the Big G engage in some repartee, then God says:

“For thou shalt worship no other god: for the lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God”

This is straight out of the King James Version.… Read the rest

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George Washington Embezzled Government Funds

George WashingtonThe following is another chapter from my disinformation book, 50 Things You’re Not Supposed to Know: Volume 2, published in 2004. For more on me go to The Memory Hole or follow me @RussKick on Twitter.

We typically imagine George Washington to be as pure as driven snow, a demigod who won the Revolutionary War, then assumed the mantle of President to flawlessly lead a fledgling country.

The reality is vastly different. Besides being borderline incompetent on the battlefield (during the first four years of the Revolution, he lost every major engagement), the man who could not tell a lie started the tradition of presidential corruption.

The whistle was blown by the Clerk of Congress — writing under the nom de plume “A Calm Observer” — in the Philadelphia Aurora, a muckraking anti-federalist newspaper founded, edited, and published by Benjamin Franklin’s grandson. In 1795, the Aurora published the Clerk’s detailed breakdown of how much loot Washington had taken from the Treasury beyond his Constitutionally-sanctioned $25,000 annual salary.… Read the rest

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One Out Of Ten People Weren’t Fathered By The Man They Believe Is Dad

DadThe following is the second chapter from my disinformation book, 50 Things You’re Not Supposed to Know: Volume 2, published in 2004. For more on me go to The Memory Hole or follow me @RussKick on Twitter.

Geneticists, disease researchers, and evolutionary psychologists have known it for a while, but the statistic hasn’t gotten much air outside of the ivory tower. Consistently, they find that one in ten of us wasn’t fathered by the man we think is our biological dad.

Naturally, adoptees and stepchildren realize their paternal situation. What we’re talking about here is people who have taken it as a given, for their entire lives, that dear old Dad is the one who contributed his sperm to the process. Even Dad himself may be under this impression. And Mom, knowing it’s not a sure thing, just keeps quiet.

Genetic testing companies report that almost one-third of the time, samples sent to them show that the man is not father to the child.… Read the rest

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Men Have Clitorises

Shocked Man Here’s a chapter from my Disinformation-published book titled 50 Things You’re Not Supposed To Know: Volume 2 (2004):

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It’s long been noted that all of us start in the womb as sexless little blobs. We each had the same undifferentiated external equipment (a bud of tissue), plus two sets of internal ducts.

Depending on whether an embryo has a Y sex chromosome or two X’s, during week seven it starts developing into a boy or a girl. That little mound of tissue (the genital tubercle) either opens to form two sets of labia and a clitoris, or it closes to make a penis and testicles. When viewed this way, the similarities between guys’ and dolls’ private parts is obvious and has drawn comments since ancient Greek times.

But there’s a whole lot more overlap than you might suspect. Women aren’t the only ones who have a clitoris. Men do, too.… Read the rest

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Jesus of Nazareth Discusses His Failure

The following article "Jesus of Nazareth Discusses His Failure" is written by H. G. Wells, one of over 40 articles in the Disinformation anthology I edited, Everything You Know About God Is Wrong: The Disinformation Guide to Religion.

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HappyTurningRuss Kick writes: H. G. Wells is best-remembered as a late-Victorian pioneer of science fiction, mainly due to his 1890s novels The Time Machine, The Invisible Man, and The War of the Worlds. He cranked out dozens of books in numerous genres of fiction and nonfiction, and 1945—the year before his death—saw the publication of his last two books to come out during his lifetime: The Happy Turning: A Dream of Life and Mind at the End of Its Tether. The Happy Turning is a slim, strange work that gets even stranger as it continues. Wells sets it up by claiming that sometimes he dreams about taking his daily walk and coming across a pathway he’s never noticed in real life. Taking this turn (the “Happy Turning”) leads him to the utopian Dreamland (a/k/a the Beyond), where his body is perfectly fit, where society knows no war, poverty, or inequality, and where his “subliminal self” lets loose with a flood of “cryptic and oracular” symbols. Wells then steps back in time to relate some dreams he had when he was young, including the one that “made me an atheist.” Having read about “a man being broken on the wheel over a slow fire,” the preteen Wells had a nightmare. “By a mental leap which cut out all intermediaries, the dream artist made it clear that if indeed there was an all powerful God, then it was he and he alone who stood there conducting this torture.” Upon awakening, he felt that he had two alternatives: go insane or stop believing in God. “God had gone out of my life. He was impossible.”
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‘White Christmas’ Songwriter Actually Hated Christmas

The following article is an excerpt of "The Music's Debt to Nonbelievers" by Dan Barker, one of 41 articles from the Disinformation anthology I edited, Everything You Know About God Is Wrong: The Disinformation Guide to Religion. For more on Dan Barker, check out the Freedom From Religion Foundation (ffrf.org).

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Irving Berlin (1888–1989)

How many patriotic Americans know that "God Bless America" was written by a man who did not believe in God? Or that it was intended as an anti-war anthem? IrvingBerlinIrving Berlin is by any measure the greatest composer of popular American music, with hundreds of enduring hits, such as "White Christmas," "Anything You Can Do," "There's No Business Like Show Business," "Alexander's Ragtime Band," "I Love a Piano," "Always," "Blue Skies," "Let's Have Another Cup of Coffee," "Cheek to Cheek," "Marie," "Play a Simple Melody," "A Pretty Girl Is Like a Melody," and "Easter Parade." Born in 1888 into a Russian-Jewish family who came to New York City in 1893 to escape religious persecution, he quickly shed his religious roots and fell in love with America. "Patriotism was Irving Berlin's true religion," notes biographer Laurence Bergreen. "Though he is not a religious person," his daughter Mary Ellin Barrett writes in her family memoir, "doesn't even keep up appearances of being an observant Jew, he does not forget who his people are." Irving and his nominally Catholic wife, Ellin, were married in an unannounced secular ceremony at the Municipal Building, not a church or synagogue...
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