Today, baseball players and television stars are lionized. Those who specialize in skills that will fascinate an audience tend to abandon their existence as total human personalities and be reduced to a kind of skilled puppet. Thise tendency reflects the ideals of our time. On this point, there is no difference between performers and technicians. The present is the age of technocracy (under the leadership of technicians); differently expressed, it is the age of performing artists. One who excels at an art can win by means of that art the enthusiastic applause of society. At the same time, such people are lowering their life goals, aiming only at appearing as dashing and as important as possible. They forget the ideals for a total human being,; to degenerate into a single cog, a single function, becomes their greatest ambition.
So when you find yourself locked onto an unpleasant train of thought, heading for the places in your past where the screaming is unbearable, remember there’s always madness. Madness is the emergency exit.
- Alan Moore
Charles Bronson is Britain’s most notorious prisoner. For 40 years, prison staff all over Britain have struggled to contain him due to his massive strength, propensity toward violence, and growing popularity. It all started in 1974 when Charles Bronson (then still Michael Peterson) was arrested for a robbery where he tried to get away with the princely sum of £26 (about $43). He was sentenced to seven years in prison—with good behavior he’d be released in four. But to this day, Bronson’s spent more than 40 years behind bars due to a series of increasingly violent and bizarre acts. Since 1974, he’s been to more than 120 prisons across the United Kingdom, attacked more than 20 prison guards (and countless prisoners), taken 11 hostages, and caused more than half a million pounds in damages. If one sentence could sum up Charles Bronson it would be the quote that adorns one of his own books: “I fear no one. Violence just makes me madder and stronger.”
As far as I am concerned, I resign from humanity. I no longer want to be, nor can still be, a man. What should I do? Work for a social and political system, make a girl miserable? Hunt for weaknesses in philosophical systems, fight for moral and aesthetic ideals? It’s all too little. I renounce my humanity even though I may find myself alone. But am I not already alone in this world from which I no longer expect anything?
It is the business of the very few to be independent; it is a privilege of the strong. And whoever attempts it, even with the best right, but without being obliged to do so, proves that he is probably not only strong, but also daring beyond measure. He enters into a labyrinth, he multiplies a thousandfold the dangers which life in itself already brings with it; not the least of which is that no one can see how and where he loses his way, becomes isolated, and is torn piecemeal by some minotaur of conscience. Supposing such a one comes to grief, it is so far from the comprehension of men that they neither feel it, nor sympathize with it. And he cannot any longer go back! He cannot even go back again to the sympathy of men!
And the Germans kill the Jews
And the Jews kill the Arabs
And the Arabs kill the hostages
And that is the news
And is it any wonder that the monkey’s confused