[NOTE: please read the second and third paragraphs from this post before continuing. Important–don’t skip reading them!]

Even though I’ve come to conclusions about my family, most of which are beyond a reasonable doubt, I’m still assailed by doubts. Have I examined my memories too selectively? Have I misinterpreted their meaning? Were things really as bad as I imagine them to have been? Am I too sensitive? Have I just been trying to justify a selfish attitude to the family?

There’s no doubt in my mind, on the other hand, that the family would smugly answer ‘yes’ to all of these questions, and not give the issue any second thoughts. They would insist that I am the real narcissist of the family (recall that, in their imagination, narcissistic = “autistic“), and that I am playing the victim, projecting my faults onto them.

Here’s the thing, though: constant second-guessing is a common behaviour of C-PTSD-suffering victims of narcissistic abuse; while a smug self-assurance that one has never done any significant wrong is typical of narcissists, including members of a collective narcissist social group.

Always questioning ourselves.

Where do I get my doubts from? A gradual accumulation of episodes of having been subjected to gaslighting. As I’ve explained in many posts already, my late–probably narcissistic–mother lied to me about having an autism spectrum disorder. My realization of the untruth of her words came not so much from 1) two psychotherapists telling me they saw no autistic symptoms in me, and 2) my score of a mere 13/50 on the Autism Quotient test [a score of at least 26-32/50 would be needed to establish the mere suspicion of clinically autistic traits] as it did from her wildly hyperbolic description of my supposed mental state as a child–i.e., the mythical psychiatrists’ recommendation to “lock [me] up in an asylum and throw away the key,” and her wondering, “Would I ever even make a good garbageman?”

Mom’s purpose wasn’t to make me believe I am retarded, for she claimed “a miracle from God” (she was never religious) had pulled me out of my supposedly hopeless mental state by the time I was around eight to ten years old…a clearly absurd claim. Her purpose was to make me believe I am somehow ‘feeble-minded’ in a more general way, that I am ‘behind’ everyone else.

This gaslighting, combined with her general winking at the bullying (from my elder siblings, R., F., and J., Mom’s flying monkeys) that she knew I was being subjected to, was all calculated to hinder my ability to build up self-confidence, to trust my instincts, and to question any of the family’s nonsense. Hence, my second-guessing.

We never feel sure of ourselves.

In contrast to that, their smug assurance that they’ve done no significant wrong to me came from Mom’s constant justifying of my siblings’ actions and general defence of them at my expense–their reward for giving her a steady feeding of narcissistic supply.

One example of my mother’s gaslighting through the autism fabrication was back in the early 2000s, when she’d been insisting, with no apparent need to check with a psychiatrist, that I have Asperger Syndrome (AS). She emailed me an article about a young man with AS. His life story of having been bullied for being different was meant, through her sharing it with me, to say that I am just like him. What’s more, the article stated several times that ‘he perceives the world differently’ from everyone else. I’m convinced my mother wanted me to think that my perception of everything is different, too. Translation: I understand the world incorrectly.

Similarly, R., F., and J. were fond of calling me a “dip,” a “dork,” stupid, etc., when I was growing up. R., as an example of his meanness, liked scowling at me and telling me, “Think,” implying I never do. Being subjected to this kind of emotional abuse regularly, throughout one’s upbringing and even well into one’s later adulthood, leads inevitably to the victim second-guessing his perception of everything…especially the emotional abuse.

We doubt ourselves, when we shouldn’t.

Bukowski once said, “The problem with the world is that the intelligent people are full of doubts, while the stupid ones are full of confidence.” Not to toot my own horn about my intelligence, and furthermore, I’m implying a lack of emotional intelligence in my abusers (they aren’t inherently stupid people); but all of this once again demonstrates the dialectical, yin-and-yang nature of reality. Another relevant quote: “To realize that our knowledge is ignorance, this is a noble insight. To regard our ignorance as knowledge, this is mental sickness.” (Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, 71)

My point, Dear Reader, is that if you–having suffered emotional abuse and gaslighting–second-guess yourself all the time, and are full of doubts about how badly your abusers treated you, remember that the big irony of all this is how your very second-guessing is one of the proofs that you really were mistreated.

Conversely, the self-satisfied attitude of your abusers, who never feel a dram of remorse, also helps prove how right you are about how much they’ve wronged you; for people who truly care will wonder if they’ve wronged you, even if they haven’t–it’s called empathy. Bad people, on the other hand, kid themselves all the time that they’re doing right: if you don’t believe me, just look at your average politician.

Heinz Kohut, who wrote about narcissism.

Now, does this mean that we victims must torment ourselves with self-doubt for the rest of our lives, just to feel paradoxically vindicated? Of course not: over time, the gradual process of healing from our psychological wounds will allow us to feel reassured without any need to fear that we’re using our pride to blind ourselves to our faults.

Narcissists evade shame by repressing their True Self of egotism, and by disavowing their faults by, for example, projecting them onto their victims; Heinz Kohut wrote about this dual process (horizontal and vertical splitting) in his book, The Analysis of the Self (page 185).

When we victims, on the other hand, project vice onto our abusers, we’re merely giving back to them what they originally dumped onto us; we’re merely putting the vices back where they belong. As for our actual faults…well, let’s let the genuinely good people in our lives tell us about those.

‘Creeps,’ an Erotic Horror Novel, Chapter Eighteen

At lunchtime the next day, Guy was walking down the hall and noticed Mark leave the Regulating Room with a look in his eyes that suggested he didn’t want anyone to know what he was up to. Fortunately for Guy, Mark hadn’t seen Guy noticing him as he scurried off to the stairs. 

What’s he up to? Guy thought as he entered the Regulating Room. The place doesn’t open for another hour or two. What was he doing in here for? 

Guy turned on the cameras to the VIP Rooms. He saw Mark enter one of them about ten seconds later. Then into the room went naked Arunny. She looked all doped up on a green Creep, but she exhibited none of the signs of horniness caused by the orange Creeps.  

Guy squinted his eyes to make sure. He zoomed the camera closer to her face, then to her genitals, which showed no signs of orange Creep lubrication. 

Is he planning to fuck her raw? Guy wondered. 

Mark pulled down his pants and opened his ass. Guy noticed an orange Creep crawling into the room, up Mark’s leg, and into his asshole. 

“Oh, dude!” Guy whispered, cringing. He looked over at the other screens, and on two of them he saw Leo and Dino, Mark’s musclemen, each in a VIP Room, too. Dino had a naked girl with him…and Leo had a naked man. “Holy shit.” 

The musclemen, like Mark, had their pants pulled down and their asses opened wide, ready to receive orange Creeps. The slaves they were to screw didn’t receive orange Creeps any more than Arunny had. 

Leo and Dino are gonna fuck the guy and girl raw, too? Guy wondered. 

Guy looked back at Mark and Arunny: sighing Mark now had a full erection; he was ready to screw. 

No orange Creep for any of the slaves, eh? Guy wondered, then zoomed in on Arunny’s pussy again. Still no lubrication. He winced as he saw Mark aim for her and ram in; she was wincing, too—she seemed to be in pain as Mark fucked her. He is fucking her raw. Guy looked back at the video screens for Leo and Dino. He zoomed in on the ass Leo was fucking, then on the vagina Dino was fucking; he saw a little blood in both fucked holes. For fuck’s sake, they’re all fucking the slaves raw; what sadists! The three slaves will be getting pink Creeps to heal their vaginal and anal wounds in about an hour or so, I guess. 


Guy and Thea were with Mark that night in the Regulating Room. 

“Now I have to tell you both about one of Capitol’s more…shall we say…extreme methods of keeping our Commodities in control,” Mark said, setting the cameras to view the sleeping area. “There are a number of things we need to be concerned about regarding the Commodities. Are they getting older, and therefore less attractive, to our clients? Are they showing less and less enthusiasm for sex, and therefore doing it with less skill? Is this lack of enthusiasm due to growing depression and a loss of hope? In other words, the bottom line: are any of the Commodities making less and less money for us? If so, we have a system for reviving that hope, as well as for weeding out undesirables. The ‘Escape Hope Initiative’, as we call it. I’ll demonstrate.”  

Mark pressed a button at the top middle of the console, and Guy and Thea saw doors on the left and right walls of the sleeping room, doors by the beds of those Commodities Mark was tempting to escape, open up, showing entrances to the ‘escape’ tunnels. Two women and a man woke up. One of the women was Kusiima, whom Guy recognized in a second. 

“How did they wake up so easily?” Thea asked in her vocal fry. “I thought you gave them all blue Creeps to knock them out cold for the whole night.” 

“I did,” Mark said. “But those three got a lighter dose.” As the three crept into the tunnels, Mark switched the cameras to ones allowing him to monitor the movement of the three in the tunnels. He also had a computer graphic with three dots moving through a bird’s-eye-view representation of all the tunnels, so he could track the position of all three in the building. Two dots were blue, the third was yellow. Oddly, the bird’s-eye-view graphic representation of the building’s outer walls was shaped rather like a human body, and the tunnels seemed like an alimentary canal and blood vessels. “Now watch them try to escape.” 

It was difficult for Guy and Thea to hide their horror at watching those three doped-up, yet still fearful, naked people crawling through those tunnels in a desperate attempt to escape sexual slavery; it was especially difficult with Mark often looking back at his two new employees, with eyes that seemed to be interested in their reactions. 

Thea, remembering how important loyalty to Capitol was to Mark, faked smirks at the sight of the three trying to escape. I’m not Cameron, she reminded herself in her thoughts as she continued smirking; I’m Thea. Her wish to remember she wasn’t Cameron made her forget her vocal fry again. “Don’t they know it’s winter outside?” she asked in her normal voice. 

Mark furrowed his brow at that feminine sound. 

“Oh, Cameron, they’ve been doped up here for so long, they’re completely disoriented as to the time of year,” he said. “Besides, it’s not like any of them are getting outside. They’re not even sure if what’s happening to them is dream or reality, they’re so high on the blue Creep drug.” 

He pressed yellow and blue buttons on the console, releasing Creeps of those colours. He pointed to the computer graphics showing the blue and yellow dots, with smaller blue and yellow dots representing the Creeps chasing the three Commodities. 

“And now the real fun begins,” Mark said with a grin, again looking back at ‘Jack’ and ‘Cameron’, who quickly turned their frowns into fake grins. Mark’s grin lessened a bit. 

Along with cameras in the tunnels to help Mark and his two employees see the three naked crawlers, with the light giving a false hope to the Commodities that they were nearing a window outside, there were hidden microphones on the tunnel walls so Mark, Thea, and Guy could hear the slaves’ grunts and panting. When they heard the screeching sound of the Creeps behind them, their grunts and panting turned into moans of fear and agitation. 

Thea nudged Guy, pretending to laugh at the Commodities’ terror and widening her eyes to tell him to fake being entertained, too. Guy quickly joined in on the laughs with her and the genuine laughs Mark was letting out, as his eyes watched his new employees with great interest, to know their attitude towards his ‘extreme methods’ of controlling the Commodities. 

Thea’s and Guy’s eyes and mouths widened when the little yellow dot reached the big yellow one. They saw the corresponding Commodity writhing in pain on the TV screen as the yellow Creeps crawled up her legs and entered her body. In a minute, she felt the fire. 

“Aah! I’m burning!” Kusiima screamed. Guy’s jaw dropped lower. 

It took every ounce of their acting ability to pretend to enjoy watching Kusiima’s agonizing death. 

“Good!” Guy shouted. “Fry that fuckin’ nigger!” I can’t believe I just said that, he thought. 

“Yeah! Ha! Ha!” Thea shouted, then suddenly remembered she, as a ‘man’, wasn’t supposed to have so high a pitch. She coughed, then used her vocal fry: “Ugly bitch!” 

Mark looked over at them. With the lights dimmed, he couldn’t see the tears running down their cheeks. 

“I’m glad you both understand the need to weed out the undesirables,” he said. “She wasn’t satisfying our customers as she had been. She was pretty, but her lovemaking hadn’t the enthusiasm it originally had, either. Remember that the Commodities came from poverty, from broken families. Without us, they all would have died on the streets, or in the Third World countries we recruited them from. We don’t take their lives; we extend them. We simply have them die later.” 

Keep rationalizing, you murderer, Guy thought; wanna put one of those yellow worms in you so badly, it hurts. 

“Well, you have to do what you have to do to stay in business, Mark,” Thea said in her gravelly voice. I want to kill you so badly, she thought; I’ll bet this is how you got rid of Guy’s predecessor. “It’s fun watching them crawl around like that.” 

“Yeah,” Guy lied, trying to make his sobs sound like chuckles. 

“A lot of people can’t handle this aspect of what we do here,” Mark said. “I find showing this to new employees to be the ultimate test of their loyalty. I won’t show this to them until after several weeks of training and careful observation of their attitude. You two have passed with flying colours, I’m happy to say.” 

“Thank you, Mark,” Guy and Thea said together. 

I’ll be monitoring you two all the closer now, Mark thought; The politicians and police are all paid for, as you two are, and there’s no way you could prove any of this without downloading video here, which I can easily track with my own devices. We’ll see if you two can still be trusted. I’ll be watching. “OK, Jack and Cameron: good night. I’ll see you both tomorrow.” 

“Good night,” they said to him, and left the room. 

Mark switched the cameras to monitor ‘Jack’ and ‘Cameron’ in the halls. He turned up the volume to catch any conversation…any suspicious words spoken between them. 

‘Creeps,’ an Erotic Horror Novel, Chapter Seventeen

After a week of work, Guy and Thea were each given their choice of a ‘Commodity’ to enjoy. Thea chose Petunia, and Guy chose Kusiima. Mark watched both encounters closely, being curious of his new employees’ lechery as a form of gleaned insight into their characters. 


Thea brought her head close to Petunia’s ear and whispered, “I’m Thea,” as softly as she could, in the hopes that no microphone would pick up her voice. She kissed Petunia on the cheek, and as she unzipped her fly and pulled out a realistic-looking strap-on dildo, she wrote T-H-E-A with her finger on Petunia’s belly, standing close enough to Petunia so no hidden cameras would be likely to record her finger-strokes. 


“What do you want me to do?” Mark said into the microphone for Petunia to say, since Guy was with Kusiima at that time, too. 


“Lie on the bed on your back,” Thea said in her vocal fry. “I’ll get on top of you.” 

“OK,” Petunia said, through Mark’s guidance. She lay on the bed and spread her legs. 

Thea got on top of her, but didn’t put the dildo in. She just rubbed it gently on Petunia’s belly. 

Petunia put her right hand on Thea’s ear. Her finger gently settled on the opening. Thea was too occupied with rubbing on Petunia’s belly to notice a brief numbness in her ear. 


That’s it, Cameron, Mark thought; Keep on fucking. You didn’t notice any tech being implanted. A little something to let me be your eyes and ears…well, one eye, and one case one day, I find reason to worry about your loyalty. 


“We’re…going…to get…you…out…of here,” Thea whispered into Petunia’s ear, in breathy pants that she hoped would be unintelligible to any microphones. She rocked her body back and forth on Petunia’s belly, saying the words in her ear each time her body rocked forward so her mouth could reach Petunia’s ear. 

As Petunia faked moaning, with her hand on the back of Thea’s neck she wrote T-H-A-N-K-S with her finger, over and over again to be sure Thea understood. 


Is Petunia writing something on Cameron’s neck? Mark wondered; Funny: I never saw his dick go in her. Was he whispering something in her ear? “What’s Jack doing with the black bitch?” he asked, looking over at the video screen with Guy. 


Guy found Kusiima’s body to be irresistible, but his guilt from being involved in her having been shat upon deterred him from putting his dick in her. Instead, Guy had his face between her legs, and he ate her out. 

As he was licking her, he used his finger to write W-E-W-I-L-L-F-R-E-E-Y-O-U-A-L-L, again and again, on her left buttock, with his body hiding his writing from any hidden cameras, or so he was hoping. 


But Mark spotted the writing. Why is Jack tickling her ass with his finger? he wondered; Speaking of finger-tickling… Then he clicked a few buttons on the computer. 


Kusiima put her right hand on Guy’s ear, her fingertip resting on the earhole. Like Thea, he never noticed the brief numb feeling in his ear as Mark’s tech slipped inside. 


That night, Capitol was closed up and the Commodities were put to bed, each given a blue Creep to ensure sleep. Petunia had the following dream: 

She was crawling with Kusiima and Arunny through tunnels with walls made of flesh. The three naked women were each glowing a different colour: Petunia was yellow, Kusiima was blue, and Arunny was green. Their glowing gave them the light they needed to find their way through.  

Kusiima, who was in front, said, “I think I see the way out!” 

“You do?” Arunny, who was behind her, said. 

“Yes!” Kusiima said. “Let’s hurry. We’re almost there!” 

Petunia, trailing at the back, said, “Wait. Before I get out, there’s something I have to do.” 

“What?” Arunny asked. 

“This!” Petunia said, then she burst into flame. 

Kusiima and Arunny crawled out of a giant ear. They looked back into the ear-hole and saw the inner tunnels exploding into an inferno. Then Petunia crawled out. Her whole body was aflame, though she wasn’t at all injured by it. She looked like a nude, female version of Johnny Storm from the Fantastic Four. 

The three women looked at the giant, burning body of Mark LeSaffre lying supine on the ground. His whole body was shaking. All three women grinned. 

“The Capitol building is burning inside, burning down to the ground,” Petunia said. “We’re all free.” 

Indeed, they saw all the other sex slaves crawling out of the ears, nostrils, and mouth of Mark’s giant body. To the right of his head was the Capitol sign. Around his body were cars in a parking lot; in the far background, all the other buildings of the city. 

Petunia lay there sleeping with a smile. 


Thea wasn’t sleeping so soundly, though: 

She, disguised as Cameron, was in the white room, lying on top of naked, supine Petunia, rocking back and forth on her belly. 

“I’m not Cameron,” she panted as she rubbed the strap-on dildo against Petunia’s belly. “I’m Thea. I’m going to get you out of here.” 

Petunia held up a piece of paper for Thea to see: it said, THANKS.  

Not concerned that ‘Free Mark’ might have seen it, Thea continued rocking on Petunia. She looked up at a mirror on the wall by Petunia’s head. She saw herself wearing the fake beard…though the beard seemed real. 

“I’m Cameron,” she said in an effortless bass vocal fry, looking down at Petunia’s crotch. Instead of seeing the strap-on dildo, though, she saw a real cock on her body, sliding in and out of Petunia’s pussy. “I’m Cameron Thewlis. I’m going to get you off here.”  

‘He’ came inside Petunia, then pulled ‘his’ cock out of her. Green come, in the form of wiggly, Creep-like worms, were spewing out of ‘his’ cock. ‘He’ saw some of them slither inside Petunia’s vagina. 

“What the fuck?” ‘he’ said, but now in the voice of Freemont Cummings, Thea’s and Guy’s father.  

‘He’ looked up at ‘his’ reflection in the mirror and saw Freemont’s face. 

“I sure love fucking whores,” ‘Freemont’ said, sticking his dick in Petunia’s pussy again. Then he said, in Thea’s voice, “I’d rather fuck whores than your Mom, Thea. You’d like it, too.” 

She woke up, her head rocketing up from the pillow and heaving a loud sigh. 

“Jesus Christ!” she gasped. “I’m not him. I’m not Cameron. I’m not ‘Free Mark’. I’m not Freemont. I’m not Dad!” Shaking, she began to sob. 

‘Creeps,’ an Erotic Horror Novel, Chapter Sixteen

The next week, after more accustoming themselves to the ever darker aspects of Capitol, Guy and Thea, bearded and suited up, were in the Regulating Room with Mark again. He was explaining to them how the Creeps technology worked. 

“Now to take your test of loyalty to the next level,” he said, holding a yellow Creep casing in his hand. 

Steel yourself, Thea thought; no matter how horrifying the next set of bombshells are, pretend you’re totally into it. Show no attitude of mercy for the victims; bury your compassion deep down in your soul. 

“Are you at all familiar with a fairly new form of technology devised by researchers in such places as MIT?” Mark asked them. “Ingestible origami robots, really tiny ones, that when eaten, they can solve certain health problems or remove foreign objects from the body.” 

“Ingestible origami robots?” Guy asked. “Sounds weird.” 

“Yeah, but effective,” Mark said. “The tiny robots are wrapped in sheets of pig intestine that are folded like origami. These, in turn, are put in capsules that, once ingested, melt and free the robots, which by remote control are made to do the work required of them.” 

“Wow,” Thea said in her normal voice. Then, after seeing a frown from Guy to remind her to sound like a man, she rasped, “Interesting. So how does that technology relate to what we do here?” 

“It inspired someone to create a similar kind of tech, but one for a completely different purpose,” Mark said. 

“Something related to what goes on here?” Thea asked, thinking, I’ll bet this is where we learn how they control Petunia. 

“Not yet,” Mark said. “The man who created this tech was planning to sell it to the U.S. military, something they could use to implant into the bodies of enemy soldiers, to kill them by burning them up on the inside. It could also be used to control the minds of the enemy, either to get them to surrender easily, or maybe to kill each other, or to kill the leaders of their own regime, one of those the U.S. government wants to topple. Or, the U.S. military might use it on their own soldiers, to make them fight more ruthlessly, more tirelessly, or with greater determination.” 

“So, what ended up happening with this technology?” Guy asked. 

“We convinced the inventor to sell it to us,” Mark said. “For use on our Commodities. He made several modifications of the tech, so they’d have a sexual application instead.” 

Bingo, Thea thought. 

“The new version he’s been making for us, what we now call ‘Creeps’, includes a mixture of drugs in some of them, but ultimately, they work much better than drugs, since those who have the Creeps working inside them don’t look high at all when they’re with our customers,” Mark said. 

That explains it perfectly, Thea thought; Bastard. 

“So how do they work?” Guy asked. 

“They come in different colours,” Mark explained. “The blue ones pacify you, and they knock you out if you’ve had a strong enough dose. The green ones make you docile and compliant, even to the point of willingly telling the truth. The orange ones sexually arouse the Commodities, lubricating vaginas and giving men erections. The yellow ones, well…I’ll explain those ones another time…kinda complicated.” 

Thea shuddered at what Mark might have been hiding there. 

“As for the red Creeps, especially tiny ones, we’ve developed microscopic technology that is implanted in them, and it attaches itself to the brain, since the red Creeps are programmed to slip into the Commodities’ ears,” Mark explained. “This technology gives us control over the speech centre of the brain, what’s called Broca’s area, so we can control what the girls say when they’re servicing a client.” 

Or so you can control what they say whenever we try to prove that they don’t work here voluntarily, Thea thought; You slimy bastard, Mark. I wish I’d recorded you saying all of this, but with all this sophisticated technology, you’d probably be able to track my recording of your confessions, too. Then I’d be as dead as Guy’s predecessor. 

‘So, Jack,” Mark went on, “what I’m gonna need you to do is, as you’re watching a Commodity with a client, press the red button to your left over there, on the central control panel. It activates that tiny speck of technology attached to Broca’s area, on the left side of the Commodity’s brain, what you’ll have put into her left ear, with the red Creep, to prepare her for the client. Then you’ll speak through the microphone here in front of you, and she’ll say your exact words to the client. Obviously, you’ll want to say exactly the kind of thing the client wants to hear.” 

You bastard, Thea thought. 

“OK, Mark,” Guy said with a smile. “No problem.” I wonder if I could figure out a way to put red Creeps in your ear, and in those of all the staff, he wondered; then I could speak your confessions in this microphone, and have you say my words to the police. Then Petunia’d be freed from this prison, and you’d be in the normal kind of prison. 

“Is there any way the…Commodities…can stop this controlling of them?” Thea asked, remembering her vocal fry after her third word. 

“I dare say they have no desire to…or little desire, if any,” Mark said. “When we find these women—and men—we put them through a screening process to determine how…slutty, for lack of a better word, they are. All the Commodities we have here like to fuck; they’re also all from more or less desperate circumstances—unemployed, homeless, or from Third World countries—so we’re providing food and shelter for them, as well as giving them lots of opportunities to do what they love to do: fuck. What we have them say is practically what they’d want to say, anyway.” 

Clever rationalization, Thea thought; you fucker. “If this is true, then why put those things in their ears at all? Why not just have the Commodities speak spontaneously?” 

“Because they might not put their true thoughts into words our clients will like to hear,” Mark said. “It might come out clumsily. It might sound tactless, or crass, ruining the clients’ fantasy. Also, many Commodities speak broken English, or no English at all. Your speaking for them, Jack, will only guide them to speak well.” 

Or to lie well, Guy thought. 

“No other questions?” Mark asked. “None from you, Jack, or from you, Cameron?” 

“No, I’m good,” Guy said. 

“Well, I’m just curious,” Thea said, straining her face into a fake smile. “When you put these mind-controls, or what-not, into the Commodities’ bodies, why use Creeps? I’m mean, why have these worm-like things crawling up their pussies and assholes? Why not just give them pills, or shots?” 

“That’s a good question, Cameron,” Mark said. “And it requires a multi-faceted answer. First of all, giving the Commodities pills or shots will be difficult, because the girls won’t cooperate, of course. They’ll squirm. They won’t open their mouths. But Creeps move fast, and they can crawl into a naked Commodity’s cunt or ass before she has time to close up her holes. Some slip in the ears, mouth, or even nostrils, moving as fast as greased lightning. Second, the man who’d been working on this technology had a convenient way of activating the Creeps, remote-controlled by a computer or cellphone app, making them squiggle and slither at great speeds, able to carry drugs into people’s bodies before they can react. As I said before, he was going to sell his invention to the army; I convinced him to sell it to us, offering him such a huge ton of money that he couldn’t resist. For here’s the third reason: Ricardo Davis, Ken Maynard, and I found it amusing to watch the Commodities’ reactions as they had these things snaking up their pussies and asses.” 

He laughed, with Thea and Guy pretending to as well. 

“Any other questions, Cameron?”  

“No, I’m good.” 

“Good,” Mark said. “OK, Cameron, come with me. We’ll leave Jack to his work, and I’ll show you what you need to take care of.” He and Thea left the room. 

Guy watched a video screen of a man going into a VIP room. A naked black woman, Kusiima, whom Guy recognized, was brought into the room by a man who then left, leaving her alone with the client.  

Guy pressed the red button and leaned toward the microphone. “So, what do you want me to do?” he said, noting her saying those words to the client a split second after he said them. 

“Get on your knees, bitch,” the man said. “I wanna piss and shit on your head.” 

Guy was speechless. 


Ten minutes later, ‘Free’ Mark returned to the Regulating Room to see how ‘Jack’ was doing. He opened the door slowly and quietly so Guy couldn’t hear him: indeed, Mark wanted to see what his new employee would do without apparent supervision. 

The man in the VIP room was, right then, in the middle of shitting on Kusiima’s head. 

“You aren’t saying anything, Jack,” Mark said, making Guy jump. “You’re frowning.” He walked over to Guy.  

“Jesus!” Guy gasped. “You scared me. There’s nothing to say.” 

“You look unhappy,” Mark said. “Don’t you like the live porn show?” 

“Well, he’s shitting on her,” Guy said. “Not my kind of fetish, to be honest.” 

“Well, I guess it’s not for everyone. We’ll clean her up as soon as he’s gone.” 

“Didn’t you say something about not allowing the clients to abuse the girls? Because injuring them depreciates their value?” 

“Yeah, but scat is nothing. He isn’t giving her cuts or bruises. And we have Creeps that kill germs, bacteria, and viruses of all kinds, even HIV. We also have Creeps that heal cuts and bruises quickly enough to get a Commodity ready for a client within the same day as an S and M encounter.” 

“Then how do you define ‘abuse’?” Guy asked. 

“When a client injures a girl beyond the ability of our Creeps to heal her within a day,” Mark said. “Broken bones, knocked-out teeth, that kind of thing. They’re bad for business.” 

“OK, I just wanted to make sure I understood where to draw the line, so I’d know when to intervene.” 

“Those are good questions to ask, Jack. It shows me you care about your job.” Just don’t care too much about the girls, Jack, Mark thought; or else you might end up like Jim. 

‘Creeps,’ an Erotic Horror Novel, Chapter Fifteen

Two days later, Guy and Thea were wearing their fake beards and suits and ties. She winced in discomfort from having to strap down her breasts. In the hall by Mark’s office, they were waiting for him to arrive. 

“I wanna grow my own beard,” Guy whispered. “Then I won’t have to wear this uncomfortable fake one.” 

“What if it looks different from the fake one?” she asked. “Mark might get suspicious, especially if, during the transition between fake beard to real one, the fake one on top of your growing facial hair looks…well…off. Better stick with the fake one and keep shaving.” 

“But I could–” he began. 

“Shh!” she said. 

Free Mark arrived just then. 

“Good morning, Mark,” she said to him in the lowest-pitched vocal fry she could muster. 

“Good morning, Cameron,” Mark said to her. “And good morning to you, too, Jack. Come on in.” He opened the door to his office, and they all went in. 

He sat at his desk, and they sat in chairs across from him. 

“I checked your references from Trevor McCluskey, and he gave you both glowing recommendations,” he said with a smile. “You did time for him once, I understand, Cameron?” 

“Yes,” Thea said, then coughed after having forgotten to do the vocal fry. Resuming her fake man voice, she continued: “I was caught managing one of McCluskey’s casinos, where the machines were all rigged to cheat the customers. The cops were hoping I’d rat out McCluskey, but I insisted that the rigging was all my idea. I did five years for him, for a felony conviction.” 

“Yeah, that’s what he told me,” Mark said. “No matter what offer the cops gave you, to free you early for ratting McCluskey out, you never said a word.” 

“Never a word,” Thea rasped. “Doing time’s a badge of honour for my boss.” 

“And you, Jack,” Mark said. “You bribed cops to keep them from sniffing out a whorehouse you managed for McCluskey?” 

“Yeah,” Guy said. “The entire police station in Brantford was fucking our whores. For free, so they’d keep their mouths shut. We made them happy, they stayed out of our business.” 

“As McCluskey told me,” Mark said. “I’m glad you can handle ‘public relations’. OK, let me tell you both about the philosophy of my business here. Because it really is a philosophy, you understand.” 

“I’m eager to gain your wisdom, Boss,” Thea said. 

“Me, too,” Guy said. “Teach me.” 

“You know, people question the morality of my business,” Mark said, leaning back in his chair. “I question the very idea of morality. It runs contrary to Nature, where all animals compete to survive. The strong crush the weak. That is the nature of things.” 

“I agree,” Guy said with a stony face. “Morality is all hypocrisy. Like the hypocrisy of the Church. At least evil-doers are honest.” 

Thea listened to her brother, thinking, I really hope for your sake, Guy, that that was just acting. I’ve heard you bash the Church’s hypocrisy before, so I’m hoping that was the only part of what you said that was from your real feelings. 

“You’re absolutely right, Jack,” Mark went on. “I’m a follower of the Marquis de Sade’s philosophy, one of absolute individual licence. Nature’s laws are clear: the strong rule over the weak. If it had been Nature’s intention for morality to hold sway, cheetahs wouldn’t be allowed to chase wildebeests, birds couldn’t eat worms, and everyone’s petty complaints would have to be satisfied, for the sake of fairness. But there’s no such thing as fairness. Equality doesn’t exist. That’s just socialist nonsense.” 

“Oh, yeah,” Thea said with her raspy vocal fry. I actually feel physical pain when I agree with him, she thought. 

“And I don’t just say this because I’m now in a powerful position, here in my Château de Silling, my Salò, if you will,” Mark said in reference to Capitol. “The same pitiless philosophy once applied to me, and though I hated being on the other side of the fence when I was a child, I now accept what happened as Nature’s decree.” 

“How were you on the other side of the fence when you were a child?” Thea asked. “What happened to you, if you don’t mind my asking?” 

“I’m glad you asked, Cameron,” he said, frowning and looking up at the ceiling for a moment. He choked, then continued: “I was born into a Catholic family, and my parents insisted on enrolling me in an all-boys Catholic school, run by priests. A few of them took a liking to me and a few of the other boys, if you know what I mean.” 

Is that a lump in your throat I see? Thea wondered. You’re actually human under that reptilian shell? I’d better not try to appeal to that one warm drop of your blood. Don’t wanna blow my cover. 

“So, did you and the other kids try to do anything about it?” Guy asked. “You know, come forward and accuse the priests?” 

“Oh, we tried,” Mark said, regaining his composure. “Nobody was on our side, of course. The priesthood had all the power, not from God, who doesn’t exist, of course, but from Nature. Even my parents were on the priests’ side, accusing me and the other boys of making up stories of sexual abuse as an excuse to be taken out of the school. ‘How dare you boys slander the name of the Holy Church!’ my father shouted at me. Really, he said that. Beat the crap out of me, too. It was then that I knew there was no God, no morality, no justice, no mercy, and no kindness in the world. There is only Nature. Might makes right. The law of the jungle.” His eyes watered. 

“It’s ugly, but that’s just the way things are,” Thea rasped. 

“That’s right,” Mark said. “Later, I sneaked Sade’s books into my home and read them. I laughed at how he wrote of ‘men of God’ raping women like Justine. I’m sure lots of priests and monks have done the like over the centuries, always getting away with it. This is the way of things, so we should just be honest about it, instead of trying to reform everything and moralize about what can’t be changed.” 

I actually feel of kind of sorry for you, Thea thought. I never thought that would happen. 

“You’re right,” Guy said. “I hate all those social justice warriors and politically correct people telling us how to think.” 

“As do I, Jack,” Mark said. “As do I.” 

“Me, too,” Thea grunted, in spite of herself. I hope Guy’s faking as much as I am, she thought. 

“Those damn socialists are the religious people of today’s world,” Mark said. “They moralize because they’re weak. Morality is the only way weak people can be strong, and when it makes them strong, they turn their backs on it, because they knew it was all hypocrisy, anyway. I don’t blame them for using hypocrisy to gain power, for I consider all paths to power legitimate.” 

“The end justifies the means,” Thea said. 

“That’s right, Cameron,” Mark said. “I have a feeling we three are going to be great friends.” 

“Great minds think alike,” Guy said. “As ours do.” 

“Indeed,” Mark said. “Our critics say we’re using these girls, exploiting them for profit. What of it? If they weren’t here, they’d be starving either on the streets or in the Third World countries we got them from. Here they’re provided for, given food and shelter, all at my expense. Some might call that charity on my part.” 

Or taking advantage of the desperate, Thea thought. 

“Next to Sade, I enjoy reading Ayn Rand,” Mark said.  

It was painful for Thea to keep herself from retching at the sound of that author’s name. “Oh, she’s great.” 

“Great philosophy!” Mark said. “From her I learned that selfishness is rational, not evil. Everyone else is selfish, so why shouldn’t we be? I provide work as well as food and shelter for those girls—a few men, too: I don’t discriminate—and all I want in return is some work from them. We make sure the customers don’t hurt them, and our Creep technology protects them from STDs. In return, I get rich. What’s wrong with that?” 

“Absolutely nothing,” Guy said. “It’s a reward for hard work.” 

“Exactly,” Mark said. “I love Ayn Rand’s writing. She’s equal to Sade as an intellectual, in my opinion. Camille Paglia’s another great female intellectual I enjoy reading. People say I’m a sexist for having this kind of business, but what kind of sexist would enjoy reading women writers?” 

Oh, of course, Thea thought; Rand absolves you of sexism, for sure. I bet you have lots of black friends, too. 


Over the next few weeks, ‘Jack’ and ‘Cameron’ were given a full orientation in Capitol, which included sitting in the Regulating Room and watching the clients when they were with the Commodities. This was a true test of their acting abilities, especially for Thea, who couldn’t, in her heart, find watching sexually exploited women to be anything other than repellant. Still, she, like Guy, had to pretend that there was not only nothing wrong with what was going on in those sex rooms, but that it was actually as enjoyable for her as it was for Mark. 

“Yeah, suck that dick, bitch,” ‘Jack’ said in the Regulating Room, grinning as he watched Kusiima on the video screen blowing a man one afternoon. She has a beautiful body, and even more beautiful eyes; but I can’t bear to look her straight in the face, he thought; her eyes’ beauty is shrouded in fear and shame. 

“Yeah!” Mark agreed. “That black bitch sure knows how to work the pipe.” He chuckled. 

“Yeah, I got a cock that would fit nicely in that mouth,” ‘Cameron’ grunted, finding it painful to imagine her father’s whore-mongering in order to stay in character. “Those full, black lips sliding up and down my shaft with her tongue. Mmm, baby!” 

“You know it, Cameron, you know it!” ‘Jack’ said, licking his lips, using his experiences with Petunia to help him stay in character, though trying not to think of her too much, out of his own guilt. 

Please, Guy, let that not be the real you saying those things, Thea thought. 

When they were finished in there, Thea and Guy were allowed to have a ten-minute break. She went straight to the washroom, almost going into the ladies’ room, but stopping herself in time, then going into the men’s. 

She found a toilet stall, went in, locked the door, and sat on the toilet without pulling down her pants. She didn’t need to piss or shit; she just needed some alone time. 

She cupped her face in her hands. Tears flowed out of her eyes. “This isn’t me,” she whispered to herself. “This isn’t the real me. I’m just pretending. I’m not really Cameron.” 

The bathroom door had opened just as she began saying that last sentence, but a squeak from the hinges, happening two seconds later, alerted her to the fact that someone may have heard what she’d said. 

She continued thinking the same thing: This isn’t me. This isn’t the real me. I’m just pretending. I’m Thea Cummings. I’m not Cameron Thewlis.  

Whoever was in the washroom with her had just finished pissing and was now washing his hands. She came out of the toilet stall. It was Mark. 

Had he heard her whispering? 

He looked over. “Oh, hi, Cameron,” he said, without a smile. 

“Hi,” ‘Cameron’ said, walking out of the bathroom. 

Analysis of ‘Casablanca’

Casablanca is a 1942 drama film/love story directed by Michael Curtiz and starring Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, and Paul Henreid, and featuring Claude Rains, Peter Lorre, Conrad Veidt, Dooley Wilson, and Sydney Greenstreet. Based on the play, Everybody Comes to Rick’s (which was written by Murray Burnett and Joan Alison), the movie is considered one of the greatest of all time.

Here are some famous quotes:

“Round up the usual suspects.” –Captain Renault (Rains)

“Play it, Sam. Play ‘As Time Goes By‘.” –Ilsa Lund (Bergman) [Often misquoted as “Play it again, Sam.”]

“Here’s lookin’ at you, kid.” –Rick Blaine (Bogart), to Ilsa

“Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine.” –Rick, of Ilsa

“I stick my neck out for nobody.” –Rick (said several times)

“I have no conviction, if that’s what you mean.  I blow with the wind, and the prevailing wind happens to be from Vichy.” –Renault

“My dear Rick, when will you realize that in this world today, isolationism is no longer a practical policy?” –Signor Ferrari (Greenstreet)

“If we stop breathing, we’ll die. If we stop fighting our enemies, the world will die.” –Victor Laszlo (Henreid)

“We’ll always have Paris.” –Rick, to Ilsa

“Where I’m going, you can’t follow. What I’ve got to do, you can’t be any part of. Ilsa, I’m no good at being noble, but it doesn’t take much to see that the problems of three little people don’t amount to a hill of beans in this crazy world. Someday you’ll understand that.” –Rick

“Louis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.” –Rick

Refugees hope to escape Nazi-occupied, war-torn Europe and get to the US through politically-neutral Lisbon. Most can’t get there directly, so instead they go from Paris to Marseille, then to Oran, Algeria, then finally to Casablanca, in French Morocco.

Casablanca is a hellhole to these refugees. They find it virtually impossible to scrounge up the money to buy the coveted exit visas to Lisbon. It’s as though Dante‘s sign at the entrance to the Inferno were moved to Casablanca’s entrance.

Casablanca thus symbolizes the snare of poverty most of the world can’t escape, especially those in the Third World. Some, like Ugarte (Lorre), are so desperate to escape that they’ll resort to murder to get the money they need to pay for a visa.

Captain Renault is an appropriate prefect of police in Vichy-controlled Casablanca, for he’s unabashedly corrupt, often taking advantage of pretty young women desperate for a visa. He represents Vichy France, who were Nazi collaborators during World War II.

Richard “Rick” Blaine is the American owner of a night club called “Rick’s Café Americain.” He’s cynical and cold, refusing to drink with customers. The casino’s games are fixed to ensure that Renault, who never pays for his drinks, always wins. Thus, between Rick’s alienating of others and Renault’s control over Rick’s business, we see the two men personifying state capitalism.

Rick has some redeeming qualities, though. We learn that he ran guns to Ethiopia during the Second Italo-Ethiopian War, and fought on the Republican side during the Spanish Civil War. He’ll redeem himself again, as will even Renault (well…sort of), at the end of the film. So Rick, as a capitalist, is more of a liberal one, loosely comparable with Orwell, who also fought against fascism in Spain, then grew disillusioned with the left.

The idealized hero of the film, though, is Victor Laszlo, the Czechoslovakian leader of an underground resistance against the Nazis. That resistance was historically connected with the Soviet Union, incidentally…not that a bourgeois Hollywood movie would ever admit to such an association, of course. Laszlo, dressed in an off-white suit, has a saintly, if dully stoic, aura about him; his unending, virtuous fight against fascism makes him seem other-worldly, almost…too good to be true. That scar on his forehead seems to be his only fault, physical or otherwise.

Since Rick has his good, idealistic side, how has he become so embittered and cynical? Back in Paris, he had a love affair with the beautiful Ilsa Lund (Bergman), not knowing she was Laszlo’s wife! The husband had been in a concentration camp, and she thought he’d died trying to escape, so she had an affair with Rick. When she learned Laszlo was alive, she left Rick without an explanation, for fear he’d follow her and endanger himself in the flight from the occupying Nazis. Rick thus got on a train to Marseille with Sam (Wilson), with an unused ticket for Ilsa, and with a broken heart.

Ilsa thus represents the beauty of that ideal both Laszlo and Rick have fought for; because she left Rick, he’s lost his idealism and become a politically neutral, cynical man who ‘sticks his neck out for nobody.’

Many who, in their youth, fight passionately for an ideal, such as freedom from fascism, equality, socialism, etc., later grow cynical and bitter because they fail to understand that fighting for such ideals involves sacrificing one’s selfish desires for the greater good. This is what has happened to Rick, and this self-centredness is what he must overcome. Indeed, sacrifice is the main theme of the film.

One such a sacrifice occurs among the minor characters, when a young Bulgarian woman (played by Joy Page) who, it is implied (defying the strict censorship of the Production Code of the 1940s), has slept with Renault behind her husband’s back in hopes of getting a visa in return. She, with guilty tears in her eyes as she asks Rick for help, has sacrificed her loyalty to her husband, and to Church morality, for freedom.

Rick’s late intervention to fight fascism and make the ultimate sacrifice (something Laszlo’s been doing from the beginning) makes him the film’s personification of the US, which stayed out of World War II until the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor. People in the West knew for years what a problem Hitler was, but did little to check his growing power; for the West was hoping the Nazis would succeed in invading and crushing the USSR. Incidentally, the USSR’s sacrifice (between 25 and 30 million Soviet Russians died) in defeating fascism is given short shrift in Western history.

Laszlo, at one point in the film, knowing of Rick’s love for Ilsa, is even willing to let the American use the letters of transit to take his wife to the US, since her safety is all-important to him. This is the length to which Laszlo will go to sacrifice all that he has to ensure the safety of his wife, the lovely personification of the ideal of freedom.

But in the end, it is Rick who makes the sacrifice, insisting that Renault write Laszlo’s and Lund’s names on the letters of transit. Rick sacrifices his enjoyment of the ideal so others can be free. Even unscrupulous Renault joins Rick in the end to join the struggle of the Free French in Brazzaville.

Now, what must be emphasized is that this fight for liberty must be understood in its proper bourgeois context. The film was released in a rush to capitalize on the Allied invasion of North Africa, to stir up American patriotism. And the Western powers’ real motives for fighting the Nazis weren’t as noble as they may have seemed.

As it says in the ‘Writers Without Money’ critique of the film, “Indeed, early in the war, Churchill and Roosevelt seemed more concerned with retrieving France’s and Britain’s old colonial empire in North Africa than about liberating western Europe from the Nazis.” This is how we should think about Renault’s joining the Free French; it’s not much of a redemption for him. Both Rick and Renault, as personifications of their respective countries, are mainly concerned with their nations’ class/power interests.

Consider Rick’s and Ilsa’s relationship with Sam, the only black character in the movie, and one clearly in a subordinate position. Rick claims that Sam gets 25% of the profits, and Rick makes Signor Ferrari promise to continue giving Sam the 25% when Rick leaves Casablanca (…and will he keep the promise, I wonder? After all, Ferrari understands Sam gets only 10%!); but given how Sam’s popularity as a piano man, singer, and bandleader is practically the lifeblood of the success of Rick’s Café Americain (as against Rick’s coldness to customers), shouldn’t he get 50%, if not much more? If Rick and Sam are such good friends, shouldn’t they be co-owners of the night club? Rick personifies the US in more ways than one.

During Sam’s singing of the song “Shine,” when he sings, “because my hair is curly,” he strokes his hair with a grin, as if glad to internalize the racism of the time. Later, when Ferrari hopes to have Sam work for him, even willing to pay Sam twice the salary Rick pays him, Sam says he doesn’t have the time even to spend Rick’s salary…oh, really? Why not use the money to get an exit visa and go back to the US? It’s almost as if…he is owned…by Rick. Of course, Ferrari wouldn’t mind owning Sam himself.

How deferential Sam is to Rick, Ilsa, and all the other white characters makes one think of the Jim Crow years, which is oddly out of place in North Africa, where there were not only anti-fascist, but also the beginning of anti-colonial, rumblings at the time. Surely expatriate Sam has noticed how the African times, they are a-changin’, but he never gives an opinion about something that should give him high hopes. But maybe that’s just the point.

On top of all of this is how Ilsa, much younger than Sam, refers to him as “the boy who’s playing the piano,” when she knew him personally back when they were with Rick in Paris. So as a personification of that ideal of freedom, Ilsa is only a conventional, bourgeois, and white liberal form, the kind that 1940s Hollywood would have cherished.

Similarly, as mentioned above, her husband, Laszlo, is only dully virtuous; he lacks the revolutionary fervour of the Red Army, who did the majority of the work in ridding Europe of Nazis. Laszlo’s singing of La Marseillaise, as impassioned as it is, hardly compensates for his ‘nice guys finish last’ kind of blandness.

Thus, both Laszlo and Lund represent bourgeois ideals of sex roles in the fight for liberty: him, dull protective Christian stoicism; her, passive, timid beauty…and this was at a time when armed women had fought fascists during the Spanish Civil War a mere three to six years before the making of Casablanca.

And so, Casablanca the city is truly a prison for all living in it. Those film noir shadows–as well as the window blinds, whose shadows showing on characters’ faces look like prison bars–are symbolic examples of indications that, in spite of, or rather, because of, the bourgeois nature of this Hollywood production, the true political problems of the time creep out in the form of Freudian slips, as it were, and expose themselves.

Many on the left will condemn this film as intolerably reactionary, and so the near-universal praise Casablanca has garnered over the years is in many ways just the bourgeois establishment giving itself a pat on the back. Imagine, on the other hand, a socialist Casablanca, with an unapologetically leftist Laszlo, and a militarily-trained Ilsa who won’t stop at just pointing a pistol at someone in her way. Imagine a Sam with dignity. Imagine an anti-fascist struggle willing to go further, and also defeat Franco, the right-wing government in ‘neutralLisbon, and the Nazis on the Eastern Front, actually aiding the Soviets!

Well, we can’t expect much from Hollywood, especially not in the 1940s, even though Curtiz would soon direct the pro-Stalin Mission To Moscow. When you think about it, though, the Casablanca we have is politically appropriate, not for the ‘liberty’ it espouses, but ironically for the sham liberty it actually presents.

I’d say it’s useful to see a movie that pretends to be all liberal and freedom-loving, yet a movie that is also clumsy enough to let the cat out of the bag often enough for attentive viewers to notice the con game being played on them. This is useful because that’s the liberal con game played before us every day in the West.

“The freedom of the Americas” is never seen because it never really existed; the US is a country founded not on liberty, but on slavery, discrimination, class antagonism, and the genocide of the aboriginals; it thus can only make a myth out of liberty, a ‘liberty’ that put Japanese-Americans in internment camps during World War II. The building of socialism in the USSR, on the other hand, is never seen because the bourgeoisie would never want us to see it.

Sam is said to get 25% of the profits, but probably only gets 10%, if that. The wife of a freedom fighter is only the ‘behind-every-great-man-is-a-great-woman’ kind of wife. The escape route to the US is ‘neutral’ Lisbon, where there’s actually a fascist government. Sexually predatory Renault has a most charming exterior. Ferrari, who has no qualms about buying slaves, seems an affable enough chap. All looks well on the outside.

My point is that it’s important to see the mask before we can remove it. The political faults of Casablanca are its very virtues, for in order to correct those faults, we must be able to find them…faults one will always try to hide.

Like Rick, we are heartbroken to see our ideals so compromised, as they inevitably will be in the world we see around us. A movie like Casablanca is like Ilsa in how beautifully packaged its message of liberty is; yet it disappoints us, as she does Rick. Still, in our disappointment, if we are willing to sacrifice our selfish wants, we can revive our hopes and fight for our ideals…as long as we watch our backs, with snakes like Renault following us.

‘Creeps,’ an Erotic Horror Novel, Chapter Fourteen

That night, Petunia lay in bed, dreaming. 

Ken Maynard was fucking her from behind, his cock in her ass. Ricardo Davis was lying on his back underneath her, fucking her pussy. Then Mark LeSaffre approached her, unzipped his pants, and put his dick in her mouth. The three men were sliding in and out of her. Her moaning sounded almost as if she were enjoying it. 

Then the three men came at exactly the same time…but instead of feeling come shooting inside her, it felt like three Creeps: one shooting down her throat, one deep in her vagina, and one through her rectum and into her intestines. The men withdrew, zipped up their pants, and went away. 

Now she saw the three men crawling naked in tubes inside her body: in her intestines, or blood vessels. They were sweating and fearful as they hurried to find an exit. 

Then, she realized that it was she who was crawling in what seemed intestines…then the intestines were the metal tunnels in Capitol…the ‘Escape Hope Initiative’.  

A door on the wall on the other side of the room opened, waking her and Sam, whose head was right by it. He looked into the hole leading to the tunnel. 

He and Petunia were still dazed by the effects of the blue Creeps given to them several hours earlier. That daze made them both uncertain if they were awake or still dreaming. In any case, that hole in the wall, seen so many times before, seemed once again like a fresh chance to escape. 

I sucked one dick too many today, Sam thought; I’m going. I hope this isn’t a dream. 

He crawled through the hole; Petunia crept over and followed him in. In her eyes, what she was seeing seemed to be a continuation of what she’d just been dreaming. As with Sam, though, she hoped she really had woken up. 

Those waves I see going up and down all around me, she thought; I sure hope they’re drugs, not dream. 

He looked back at her as he kept crawling, hearing her panting in time with his. “Petunia?” he asked in a slurred voice. “Is that you?” 

“Yeah,” she said. “I’m sick of…fucking people…I hate.” 

“Me, too,” he panted. “If yellow Creeps…get me, I’ll welcome them. I die…every day…I suck dick…and take it…in the ass.” 

“So do I,” she said. “I don’t know…if I prefer…escaping…or being burned…by yellow Creeps.” 

They kept crawling, then Sam saw light up ahead. 

“We’re almost there,” he said. “I hope it’s warm out.” 

“I don’t know…how long…we’ve been here,” she slurred. “We never see…a calendar…or a window…to the outside…anywhere.” 

“Yeah. And the drugs…disorient us…so much…that we never…know the day…or the month. I hope it’s summer…out there.” 

The light was getting larger, and though his vision was too blurry to make out what was outside, he saw a window. 

“Freedom!” he shouted with a shot of adrenaline. “Others have escaped…The Capitol staff…have announced it…It must be true!” He hurried ahead. 


“That’s what you think,” Mark said, watching Sam and Petunia on the video screens in the Regulating Room, and hearing every word of their conversation through hidden microphones in the tunnel. He pressed a blue button. 


From behind, Petunia heard the screeching noises. 

Gasping, she looked back. Only blue Creeps were coming. 

“Oh, no!” she said, her shock of fear adrenalizing her. “Hurry Sam! They’re coming! Blue ones…to take us back…to our beds!” 

“I ain’t…going back in there.” 

He reached the window and looked out, blinking to try to focus better: at first, he saw only a white glow; then…wind and snow! 

A shock of adrenaline made his whole body move in spastic jerks. Those waves before his eyes were gone, and the freezing horror outside had a cruel clarity. 

“Oh, fuck me!” he shouted. “It’s the middle o’ fuckin’ winter! And we’re fuckin’ naked!” He began sobbing. 

“It’s winter?” she screamed. 

“A fuckin’ blizzard outside!” 


That’s right, nigger-boy, Mark thought with a smirk, then pushed a button opening the window. He pulled a lever, causing the floor of the tunnel Sam was sitting on to flip up, throwing Sam screaming out of the building and into a hill of snow. Get your aging black ass out of my building. 


“Sam!” Petunia screamed as the window slammed shut. Oh, please, God, she thought; let this just be a continuation of my dream. It would be the sweetest nightmare, if only it weren’t real! 

She did so much sobbing for her friend that she didn’t even notice the two Creeps that wiggled their way inside her vagina and anus. She barely fidgeted as they snaked their way deep inside her body. She wept herself to sleep in two minutes. Only now would her dreams resume. 

Review of ‘Enough Is Enough’

[NOTE: please read the second and third paragraphs from this post before continuing. Important–don’t skip reading them!]

Enough Is Enough: Surviving Emotional and Psychological Abuse is a memoir by Brien Nelson. As the subtitle indicates, the book is about not only his years of having been victimized by emotional abuse, but also about his efforts to overcome the trauma.

He wrote the book in response to a bitter divorce from a psychologically abusive, alcoholic ex-wife whose manipulation was pushing him to the breaking point. The one good thing she did, though, was to advise him to see a doctor because of his overwhelming health problems at the time; that doctor, in turn, after finding no physiological problems with him, advised that he seek psychotherapy (page iii). When he got that therapy, vast depths of repressed pain surfaced…from problems he’d had long before she entered his life.

The reason he’d been so susceptible to such a manipulative woman, a wife who repeatedly kicked him out of their apartment in wild rages, was that he’d developed a codependent mindset as a result of years of emotional abuse from his narcissistic parents and their golden child, his similarly narcissistic older sister.

After going through many memories detailing one painful episode after another, he goes into how he has been doing the healing work. As of the writing of his book, he is amazed at how much progress he’s made, in spite of knowing he still has a long way to go.

He writes of his childhood experiences as a bit of a loner, with few friends, in the first chapter. He writes, however, as if he were describing the childhood of someone else, a friend. Projecting himself into another boy has a sympathizing effect for the reader, at least from the writer’s point of view: we often don’t want to read of someone complaining about his own problems; but if he pleads the case of someone else, he doesn’t seem so ‘selfish’ about it, and this caring for another makes us want to empathize not only with that ‘someone else,’ but also with the writer.

Though this imagining of his sad childhood to have been that of a friend is an effective writing technique to arouse compassion in the reader, I for one was able to feel plenty of empathy for Brien just reading of his experiences as his own. Indeed, I was touched by how frank and honest he is about baring his soul to the reader; it took a lot of courage to reveal what he did…read the book yourself to see what I mean!

Though I, thank the gods, never experienced an abusive spouse or an acrimonious divorce, as he did, I nonetheless can relate to his childhood experiences of narcissism in the family. My parents weren’t alcoholics, and my father’s worst vices were his bigotry and mental slavery to conservatism, rather than narcissism. But my mother,…

As with Brien, I have a golden child sister, a narcissistic know-it-all who speaks when she should listen. Brien’s sister did things to him when a child that were, understatement of the year, sexually inappropriate. So did my sister play inappropriate games with me, when I was about eight or nine.

I don’t wish to go through everything he discusses in his book because, of course, it’s best to let him do it himself, in his own words. Suffice it to say, my take on why he went from an abusive family upbringing to an abusive marriage is from what I’ve learned from object relations theory.

The bad internalized objects we get from abusive parent/elder siblings reside in our minds like ghosts. These become a kind of blueprint for our later relationships, predicting with remarkable precision how they’ll be. If we’ve been abused as kids, we expect such relationships elsewhere; an abusive relationship becomes our normal.

Brien’s book, however, is not a pity party, as some idiot anonymous troll claimed it to be in the comments on the book’s Amazon page. In the later chapters, Brien focuses on what we can do to heal our trauma, such as repeating positive self-affirmations of beliefs contrary to the poisonous words we heard during our years of abuse.

One affirmation in particular that he gave touched me: “I am completely normal” (p. 137). Anyone who has read my blog posts on how my late, probably narcissistic mother subjected me to gaslighting (by claiming, in the most absurdly extreme language possible when I was a kid, that I have an autism spectrum disorder I’ve since learned I don’t have) will know why this affirmation resonates with me.

I’m at one with Brien in saying that positive affirmations, done repeatedly over a long enough period of time and felt to be true in one’s heart, can help in eventually healing psychological trauma. Going back to my point about object relations, I’d add that it helps, through autohypnosis and meditation, to imagine and introject new, loving objects who are the dialectical opposites of those abusive ones in our past.

In our suggestible hypnotic state, we can imagine those internalized objects (i.e, imagined new parents) saying those affirmations to us with loving eyes. The powerful emotional effect of hearing and seeing them, in our mind’s eyes and ears, should help to drive home the affirmations even better.

In chapter ten, Brien writes of “Silencing the Rebel,” which seems to be his way of referring to what is usually called the inner critic. It’s a rebel, because it rebels against our true selves, replacing who we really are with a false version of who we are, a projection of all the worst parts of our abusers. To heal, we must silence this inner bad object, exorcise the demon, even.

Brien also writes about his relationship with a higher power. Though we all have diverging opinions on religious and spiritual matters, it is common for survivors of emotional abuse to use some form of spirituality to help them heal and give them peace.

I do that through what I call The Three Unities: the Unity of Space, symbolized by a Brahman-like infinite ocean of universal oneness, which helps me to feel connected with the world, thus ending my isolation; the Unity of Time, at once a cyclical, wave-like conception of time and also the eternal NOW, which helps me to focus on my living, present reality, and not on my painful past, or worrying about my future; and the Unity of Action, a dialectical monism symbolized by the ouroboros, which helps me to know that whatever ill may befall me, it will eventually, in one form or another, flow back into good.

Whatever direction you choose to take, Dear Reader, whether it be spiritual or not, I recommend you read Enough Is Enough. For even when we’ve removed the abusers from our lives, we’re still haunted by the pain they’ve caused us; and apart from Brien’s advice about saying affirmations and using spirituality, reading his story is a helpful exercise in empathy.

The stronger empathy we feel for him (or for any C-PTSD sufferer, for that matter), the more we can be assured that we’re better than our non-empathic abusers. For remember, one of our abusers’ most powerful weapons against us is to make us believe we have their vices. In empathizing with Brien, though, we know we don’t have those vices.

‘Creeps,’ an Erotic Horror Novel, Chapter Thirteen

Thea, walking away from her car the next morning to go into her office to work, felt her cellphone ringing in her purse. She took it out. 


“Ms. Cummings?” a female voice on the other end said. 


“I’m Officer Lena Van Gorder. I work for the local police department, under Detective Nichols, who’s connected with Capitol in a very friendly way, if you know what I mean.” 


“Yes. I also know about your attempt to find out what’s going on down there yesterday. I learned through the grapevine that Capitol is hiring. They need someone to operate what’s called the Regulating Room, since they’ve let go someone there who wasn’t…well…working out for them.” 

“Oh?” Thea wondered if this ‘dismissed’ person was the one she was supposed to have met the night before. 

“Yes. Also, one of their junior managers is being transferred to another branch, one in Montreal, so they’ll need someone to replace him. I was thinking that if you could somehow convince Mark LeSaffre that you and your brother—disguised, of course—were people he can trust, you could get jobs there, then find the proof you were trying to find yesterday.” 

“Wow, thanks!” 

“Just giving you a suggestion. Gotta go. Can’t let Detective Nichols know what I’ve been talking about. Maybe we’ll talk again…or maybe not. Bye!” 

“Wait. Officer—“ 

She’d already hung up. 


“Why are we meeting here instead of in your office?” Thea asked as they all sat at a table in a diner. 

“Because this has to be off the radar,” Van Gorder said. “My immediate superior, Detective Nichols, is on LeSaffre’s payroll.” 

“Oh, so that’s why you want us to go into Capitol instead of some undercover cops,” Guy said. 

“That’s right,” Van Gorder said. “LeSaffre has connections all over the police force, not just in the Toronto area, but all over Canada, and even in the US, where Capitol has other branches. He’s seen you two, but he doesn’t know you. You can disguise yourselves with fake beards. Ms. Cummings, dress like a man. Can you imitate a man’s voice?” 

“Yeah, I guess,” Thea said in a hoarse-sounding bass vocal fry. 

“That’s always got to be your voice,” the female cop said. “Keep all your mannerisms, speech peculiarities, and that kind of thing consistent, or else Mark will be suspicious. He’s paranoid as hell about his enemies. I looked into your histories and learned you both have studied drama and psychology, right?” 

“How did you know about our histories?” Thea asked, sneering and looking askance at the police officer. 

“It’s amazing what you can find out through the internet,” Van Gorder said. “But it’s true, right? You’ve both studied drama and psychology?” 

“Drama and psych for her,” Guy said. “Only drama for me.” 

“Whatever,” Van Gorder said. “I hope you have good acting skills, ‘cause you have to be as believable and natural as possible, to convince LeSaffre that you are real mafia men.” 

“We can,” Thea said. “We learned method acting in our university acting classes.” 

“What’s ‘method acting’?” 

“It means we have to learn how to be the people we’re acting as,” Guy explained. “Find stuff within our own personal lives that relates us to these mafia men we’re pretending to be, to make it more realistic, then we can—.” 

“Fine, whatever,” the cop said. “Anyway, LeSaffre will want references from a mafia man, since people with criminal backgrounds, but who are also loyal to their bosses, are the only ones he trusts. He hates ‘straight’ people and trusts only the corrupt. Evil is his good. I know a crime boss who can pretend you’ve both worked for him, Trevor McCluskey, whose gambling, drugs, and prostitution rackets are up in Winnipeg. LeSaffre gets a lot of his new men from McCluskey.” 

“How do you know this McCluskey will vouch for us?” Thea asked. 

“‘Cause if he doesn’t, his son will do ten years for armed robbery,” Van Gorder said. “Don’t worry about the details, I’ll work all of that out. Let’s just remember to keep quiet about all this. You’re lucky I didn’t want to take my vacation time this month, as Detective Nichols wanted me to; otherwise, you’d have missed your chance to get hired by LeSaffre. He’d have found two other people instead.” 

“And what’s in it for you, Officer?” Guy asked. 

“My sister got mixed up in prostitution. She went missing from one of McCluskey’s brothels in Sault Ste. Marie. Is she dead, or has she been moved into one of these Capitol branches? I’d like you to help me find out, and get her out if you find her.” 

“What’s her name?” Thea asked.  



“Remember,” Thea told Guy, who was in a suit, “act all enthusiastic about working in Capitol and enjoying the benefit of fucking the girl of your choice, since that’s a perk Mark gives you as an employee.” 

“OK,” Guy said, making sure his fake beard was on right. “With my background in computer programming, I should be able to figure out this ‘Regulating Room’ job easy enough.” 

“When I got the management job, I realized it wasn’t so much because of my experience as a manager in a department store as it was my ‘attitude’ towards the ‘Commodities’. Those bastards actually call their sex slaves ‘Commodities’: how repugnant. Anyway, LeSaffre’s main concern is loyalty to his business, as that cop told us in the diner. I could sense Mark’s paranoia about being betrayed, looking in his eyes. I’ll bet you’re meant to replace the guy who disappeared when he tried to give us proof of the sex slavery and mind control. I couldn’t get that file he sent to my phone to upload, much less open, to give me the proof.” 

“I guess had that guy lived, he’d have given you the password, or something.” 

“I don’t know. Anyway, we can’t communicate by cellphone—they’ll track our calls and texts, as they did his.” 

“OK,” Guy said, straightening his tie. “I have to act like the lecher I was with Petunia.” 

“We both have to,” Thea said. “Which will be difficult for me, but we have to think like this Mark does. Total psychopath. No empathy, no pity. Shouldn’t be too hard for you, being male and all.” 


“Guy, every guy I’ve known has been like that, to some extent, at least: Dad, my former boyfriends. As for you, I’m hoping you can show me you’re a little better than that…assuming you can stop fucking Petunia and actually think of other people.” 

“OK, OK.” 

“Anyway, if you get the job, don’t only go for Petunia when they give us that ‘benefit’. You and I can only occasionally use that benefit to fake making it with her while communicating our plan to free her; if we choose only her, over and over again, LeSaffre will get suspicious, and maybe figure out that we’re the ones who met with him and Petunia in his office with Kay and Brennan. He might even have her killed, as extra revenge on us for trying to expose him.” 

“Right,” Guy said, having just finished putting on brown contact lenses to cover his blue eyes. “Ready to go.” 

“Good luck. Sound eager for the job. Bye.” 

“I will. Bye.” He left the house. 


Guy went into Mark LeSaffre’s office trying hard not to fidget. He wanted to touch his fake beard out of fear that it was falling off, or was on wrong; but he also feared making it come off from touching it. This indecision led to more fidgeting, which he had to suppress. Mark was sitting at his desk. 

“So, Jack Mortimer?” Mark said, holding out his hand. 

“Yes,” Guy said, shaking his hand and sitting in the same chair he’d sat in, across from Mark’s desk, when he had been there with Thea, the lawyer, and Brennan. “I’m interested in the job opening for ‘Regulator’. Trevor McCluskey heard about the job, and sent me to you.” 

“Trevor McCluskey, eh?” Mark said, looking intensely in Guy’s eyes. “Another fellow, someone named Cameron Thewlis, said McCluskey referred him here, too, but for a management job.” 

“Really?” Guy said, hoping his voice wouldn’t sound too shaky to Mark. “What a coincidence. I guess you’re doubly lucky that he can help you out.” 

“I guess.” Mark looked over ‘Jack’ some more. “You know, you look a little familiar, Jack. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but I feel I’ve seen you somewhere before…and I never forget a face.” 

“Well,” Guy said, keeping still, “Do you ever hang out in The Leicester?” He smirked lewdly. 

That must be where I saw you! I bet I’ve seen you up at pervert’s row, checking out the strippers up close.” 

“Hey, man, that’s the only place I sit in The Leicester.” 

Guy and Mark gave each other a high five and laughed. 

“You’ll be pleased to know that we have two girls from there working for us here,” Mark said with a grin. 

“Which bitches?” Guy asked. “I wanna ‘Regulate’ ‘em!” 

Mark laughed. “Well, if you do your job well, you’ll be doing a lot more than just regulating them, Jack. What’s most important to us here in Capitol is loyalty. We have had the police and government on our side, ever since they legalized prostitution; but there’s always somebody who wants to fink on us and shut us down, claiming we’re doing illegal things here. We had to…terminate your predecessor for being disloyal, and termination here has a way of, let’s say, getting under your skin.” 

“I see,” Guy said, trying not to frown. He hoped the chill he felt slithering throughout his body wasn’t visible to Mark. 

“Loyalty, on the other hand, comes with great rewards. In regulating, you watch the sexual activity between our clients and our girls—well, most of ‘em are girls, but we have some men for the gay crowd and for desperate women. It’s like watching live porn videos.” 

“Sounds like a sweet gig.” 

“It is, but it gets better than that,” Mark went on. “We reward your loyalty by allowing you to enjoy any one of our girls that you like, for one hour each week, for free.” 

“Alright!” Guy roared. “Oh, sorry for the noise.” 

“That’s OK, Jack. Your enthusiasm is understandable and appreciated, actually. We’ll give you full training on all the equipment and technology, starting the day after I confirm your reference from McCluskey. Odd how he’s in Winnipeg and you’ve been here in southern Ontario, frequenting The Leicester. Well, he has businesses and contacts around here, too, of course. Anyway, if all goes well, you’ll be starting the day after tomorrow. How’s that all sound? Oh, and the pay is $30 an hour.” 

“That sounds like music to my ears.” 

Capitol will make The Leicester seem like a convent in comparison, I promise you.” 

“I can hardly wait…pardon the pun.” 

They both laughed and high-fived again.

Analysis of ‘Animals’

Animals is a 1977 concept album by Pink Floyd. It was all conceived by bassist Roger Waters, who not only wrote almost all the music as well as all the lyrics, but also sang most of the lead vocals (except for ‘Dogs,’ much of which was sung by guitarist David Gilmour, who also co-wrote the song), and even played much of the acoustic and rhythm guitar [with Gilmour playing bass on ‘Pigs (Three Different Ones)’ and ‘Sheep‘].

Here are the lyrics to all the songs on the album.

The album’s concept, with its dogs, pigs, and sheep, was loosely inspired by George Orwell‘s Animal Farm; but don’t expect this album to be a criticism of Marxism-Leninism. These dogs don’t represent Stalin‘s secret police; these pigs are not the Bolsheviks; and these sheep, while docile and unthinkingly obedient at first, eventually rise up and crush the real enemy of modern humanity–capitalism.

Again, as with my analysis of The Dark Side of the Moon, I’m writing this as a tribute to Roger Waters, and his principled stance against such current issues as what’s happening in Syria, the West Bank and Gaza, Brazil, and now, Venezuela. Though not quite as radical a socialist as I’d prefer him to be, Waters is as opposed to the ruling class now as he was back in the 70s. His socialism is what justifies my doing a leftist analysis of Animals.

Since I wrote my analysis of Animal Farm, I’ve continued my transition away from staunch anarcho-communism and grown much more patient about when the withering away of the state should occur. Because of this change of heart, coupled with my sense of horror at what’s happened to the world since the catastrophic dissolution of the Soviet Union, I’ve come to view Orwell’s novella in a much less positive light.

This change of heart has made me want to write of Animal Farm in a far more critical way, but without hassling to update my old post. (Remember, Dear Reader: if you want to know my current views on a subject, check the dates of my posts; my views evolve and change all the time, so if my newer posts contradict anything I said in the older ones, you should know which views to judge me by now.) So I’ll be critical of Orwell here, if indirectly.

Tankie readers, I give you my anti-Animal Farm!

The cover colour photo of Animals shows a pig balloon floating over the Battersea Power Station. Black and white photos on the inner sleeve show more of the power station, as well as a bigger image of the pig balloon, a gate, and barbed wire.

So instead of the private property of a farm, which in Orwell’s allegory becomes the so-called state capitalist property of the Stalinist pigs, we have the actual state capitalist property of the bourgeois UK government, whose pigs, gates, and barbed wire seem to say “Keep out!” (as the sign of an owner of private property would say) to the disenfranchised rest of us.

These images are ominous: though state-owned enterprises can be for the public good, they can also be privatized. The cover of Animals seems to be warning us of what will happen to such things as the welfare state if people like Thatcher are allowed to have their way…as, indeed, they eventually would, so many years following the release of the album. Don’t let pigs gain ascendancy over public services!

The ‘Pigs On the Wing‘ songs were written for Waters’s then just-married wife Carolyne Christie, though their message of love can easily be extended to a general sense of comradeship.

If we don’t care about each other, we’ll just “zig-zag our way,” that is, move about aimlessly, with no sense of direction. “The boredom and pain” of alienation and ennui will have us only “occasionally glancing up through the rain,” that is, rarely noticing the cause of our woes.

Note how irregular the rhythm of Waters’s acoustic guitar strumming gets at this point, ultimately switching from its 3+3+2 subdivision of (2 bars of ) 4/4 at the beginning to 3/4 at the end, when he sings of who the cause of our pain is: the “pigs on the wing,” who cause our irregularity, our zig-zagging.

The pigs are flying because they are the ugly beasts at the top of the political and economic ladder, like that pig balloon on the album cover. They’re also “on the wing” because the ideal they represent will come true when pigs fly.

…and what is that ideal? Not full communism, for recall, this album is the anti-Animal Farm. These pigs’ ideal is ‘free market’ capitalism, already championed in the mid-1970s by such people as Milton Friedman and Margaret Thatcher, at the time the Leader of the Opposition. This ideal would quickly degenerate into the ugly reality of neoliberalism, the effects of which we’ve been suffering increasingly for the past forty years.

The dogs in Animal Farm, as I mentioned above, were the NKVD, whose excesses during the 1930s (unjust incarcerations and executions) are blamed on Stalin, but were largely the fault of Yagoda and Yezhov.

The dogs of Animals, however, are the dogs of capitalism, not communism. These bourgeois barkers are those of the middle and upper classes. Those who “can work on points of style, like the club tie, and the firm handshake” are clearly those of the upper classes, who “as [they] get older…in the end [they’ll] pack up and fly down south.” The rest of the lyrics can equally apply to all those from the lower-middle to upper classes.

Since the dogs of Animal Farm are understood to be the secret police of the proletarian state, the dogs of Animals can be seen to represent, at least in part, the police of the bourgeois state, loyal to their upper class masters to the point of fawning, while vicious to, and growling at, the working class.

The petite bourgeois, “when…on the street,” has “got to be able to pick out the easy meat,” that is, find good opportunities in his upwardly-mobile ambitions, and “strike when the moment is right without thinking.” Indeed, not thinking about the workers he’s exploiting. Then, if he’s one of the small minority of petite bourgeois who rise up the ranks of the rich, he “can work on points for style.”

The back-stabbing capitalist has “to be trusted by the people that [he lies] to.” These people include not only the masses of exploited workers, but also the traumatized veterans of imperialist wars, all those people deceived by the corporate media, and also the petite bourgeoisie, whose hopes for advancement are frustrated by the super-rich’s use of the state to keep down the competition. “One capitalist always strikes down many others.” (Marx, p. 929) Capitalism is a dog eat dog world.

It’s significant that musically, the whole song has a sad tone to it, for the rule of the bourgeois makes sadness, depression, and alienation all epidemic problems. Gilmour’s harmonized guitar leads imitate the sad howling of lonely dogs, who symbolize the alienated people of all classes.

You could be a worker, a petite bourgeois, a cop, or a billionaire, and “it’s going to get harder…as you get older.” And while you may be rich enough to afford to “pack up and fly down south,” your wealth won’t save you from having to suffer what so many of the rest of us suffer, to “hide your head in the sand, just another sad old man, all alone and dying of cancer.”

The tendency of the rate of profit to fall results in financial crises when the capitalist will “lose control” and “reap the harvest [he has] sown.” One day, the crisis will be too great to recover from, and it will be “too late to lose the weight [he] used to throw around. So, have a good drown,” bourgeoisie, “as you go down all alone, dragged down by the stone.” That stone dragging down the self-destructing, suicidal bourgeoisie is tied to the same dialectical wheel that ended feudalism; that echoing “stone, stone, stone,…” symbolizes the cyclical turning of that wheel.

Gilmour has sung so far; now, Waters takes over the lead vocals. He is singing in the voice of one beginning to develop class consciousness, for he’s “confused,” sensing he’s “just being used.” He has to “shake off this creeping malaise” of alienation, and “find [his] way out of this maze,” the base and superstructure created by the ruling class.

He tells all those without class consciousness that they are “deaf, dumb, and blind…pretending that everyone’s expendable, and no one has a real friend.” The pro-capitalist dogs of class war, regardless of their social class or occupation (businessman, cop, soldier), justify their defence of society’s class structure, for they “believe at heart everyone’s a killer.”

The pro-capitalist has this cynical view of the world because he “was born in a house full of pain,…was told what to do by the man,…was broken by trained personnel, [and]…was fitted with collar and chain,” for he’s been a good, obedient dog who never questioned his indoctrination that there is no alternative. As a result, he “was only a stranger at home,” for that’s how deep worker alienation cuts.

And when the capitalist mode of production finally collapses under its own contradictions, the obedient dogs of the bourgeoisie will be “dragged down by the stone” with their masters.

“Pigs (Three Different Ones)” takes on three political influences in England that Waters had, and still has, no love for.

It’s hard to know specifically who Waters had in mind for the first one, a “big man, pig man, ha-ha, charade you are.” As a pig, he’s a politician, by reference to the Bolshevik pigs in Animal Farm; but since this is Waters’s anti-capitalist allegory, and since he’s probably thinking about a 1970s British politician, it’s safe to assume he’s thinking about a right-winger.

Allied to the above is the notion of ‘war pigs,’ an expression that, by the late 70s, was already popularized by the Black Sabbath song. So I’ll venture to guess that, whoever this pig was, he was probably hawkish and imperialistic, hoping to get his filthy hands on the natural resources of an exploited Third World country, hence the pig’s “digging.” “What do you hope to find?” Waters asks, “down in the pig mine.”

The second pig seems to be Margaret Thatcher, who at the time of Animals‘ release wasn’t yet prime minister, but who as Leader of the Opposition was already up to no good. We often think of the rise of neoliberalism as something that began in the 1980s, with her and Reagan; but the precursors of it were already going on in a big way from the mid-70s, after the oil crisis caused many to consider Keynesian economics to have run its course.

The influence of Milton Friedman and the Chicago Boys was already felt in Chile, after the September 11th 1973 coup replaced democratically-elected Salvador Allende with authoritarian dictator Augusto Pinochet. A popular myth claims that the “free market” policies of Pinochet‘s regime revived the Chilean economy, but the only beneficiaries were the ruling class. Their benefit, nonetheless, was enough to encourage ideologues like Thatcher to apply “free market” capitalism to the UK and the rest of the world.

In making Animals, Waters was being prescient in a way I’m sure that today, with neoliberalism having metastasized into a global evil, he would wish he’d gotten horribly wrong.

Many, if not most people, in the UK and around the world would agree that Thatcher was a “fucked up old hag.” As one who wanted to maximize privatization, she is aptly described in the song as a “bus stop [i.e., stop the progressive movement of public services] rat bag” [i.e., the filth and squalor that results from ending those public services]. She radiated “cold shafts of broken glass,” and she did “like the feel of steel” (the term Iron Lady was already being used for her).

Like the first pig, she was “good fun with a hand gun,” for she would soon prove to be an imperialist, too; also, she’s “nearly a laugh, but…really a cry”: we should be laughing at clowns like her, but what they do is so hurtful, we can only cry. The surprise in how these ideologues’ asininity actually hurts is felt in the brief switch from 4/4 to one bar of 3/4 on hearing Waters sing “cry,” then back to 4/4.

The third pig was Mary Whitehouse, an old prude who protested against the growing permissiveness of British society. Again, her wish to restore a repressive sexual morality would have been laughable if not for her later political alliances with highly-placed conservatives like Thatcher. The ruling class wants to control us in every way, including our sexuality.

Today, however, the ruling class controls our desires in the opposite way, by overindulging us through the media and markets, so we’ll be too distracted to think critically about the system we’re all stuck in. Recall my use of the ouroboros as a symbol of the dialectical relationship of opposites: as regards sexuality, the serpent’s biting head of repression (Whitehouse) shifts over to its opposite, the bitten tail of such things as addiction to internet porn, strippers, prostitutes, etc. We think about fucking, so we won’t think about how we’re all being fucked.

“Do you feel abused?” Waters taunts Whitehouse, then pants lewdly into the microphone, as if watching a porno. She’d have us “keep it all on the inside.” She’s “nearly a treat,” another sexual taunt at her priggishness, but she, like Thatcher et al, is “really a cry.”

Nick Mason punctuates the beat in this song by hitting a cowbell, an ironic allusion to the cows in Animal Farm, and perhaps another jab at Thatcher and Whitehouse. In the middle section, Richard Wright plays a hypnotic melody on the organ, later adding a synth to it: B-E-F#-G-F#-E-F#-G-B-E-F#-G-F#-E-F#-G-C-E-F#-G-F#-E-F#-G-C-E-F#-G-F#-E-F#-G…,” etc., suggesting the way these politicians hypnotize us all into going along with their agendas.

Switching roles, lead guitarist Gilmour plays sad bass licks over the sad E minor/C major progression that bassist Waters strums on the rhythm guitar (with a delay effect), and with Wright’s mesmerizing keyboard melody. Elsewhere, Gilmour uses a talk box to imitate pigs’ oinks and grunts as he plays lead guitar licks. It’s so sad being mesmerized by political pigs.

Waters’s “Sheep” aren’t the usual passive type, at least not by the end of the song. They’re like the rebelling animals at the end of the CIA-financed cartoon version of Animal Farm, which was an egregious bit of anti-Soviet propaganda going even further than Orwell had intended. Thus, the irony of this anti-capitalist song, when compared with that cartoon, is a masterstroke for Waters.

At first, the sheep are like most of us, “only dimly aware of a certain unease in the air.” We all suffer the discontents of neoliberalism, but many of us still think that either voting Trump out of office, or pushing for still more “free market” deregulation, or voting in Labour in the UK, or voting in anybody, in and of itself will solve the problem. “You better watch out! There may be dogs about.” Remember to be careful not to let slip the dogs of class war.

Waters has looked over the Jordan River, and instead of seeing the band of angels coming for to carry the evangelical Christian Zionists home, he’s seen the oppression of the Palestinians. This is “what…you get for pretending the danger’s not real.”

When, “meek and obedient, you follow the leader…into the valley of steel”–the steel of the Iron Lady who helped bring about the neoliberalism that has resulted in an epidemic of homelessness in the UK, San Francisco, and elsewhere–you finally have “terminal shock in your eyes,” and you realize that “this is no bad dream.”

Waters warned us about people like Thatcher decades ago. In allowing May‘s ascendancy, we proved we never heeded this warning. The scraping on the dubbed strings of Waters’s rhythm guitar suggests that “terminal shock.”

In the midsection of the song, we hear a bassline and some keyboard harmonizing (based on a D diminished seventh chord) that seem inspired by the Doctor Who theme. Do we need The Doctor to intervene and wake us complacent sheep up?

Also during this section of the song, we hear Waters speaking through a vocoder and parodying Psalm 23, indicating that Church authoritarianism has been used to help the ruling class, that is, people like Whitehouse helping people like Thatcher. Is The Doctor one of those sons of God who, in consorting with the daughters of man, will do the forbidden mixing of the human and divine worlds (symbolic language for sharing the power of the wealthy with the poor), and thus give us the strength to revolt against the ruling class?

The rich would naturally see such a development as a great evil; for when the revolution comes, and we erstwhile timid sheep have fallen “on [the bourgeois’s] neck with a scream,” we “wave upon wave of demented avengers” will have finally replaced the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie with that of the proletariat.

Then, when “the [capitalist] dogs are dead,” and any petite bourgeois puppies hope to revive the profit motive, we’ll warn them to “stay home and do as you’re told,” for the workers will have power over the rich…for a change. The surviving bourgeois wannabes will have to “get out of the road if [they] want to grow old.”

The song ends with Gilmour strumming triumphant chords high up the guitar neck in the key of E major, then over background progressions of D major and E major (with a bass pedal point in octaves of E), and also E major and A major.

“Pigs on the Wing, Part Two” reaffirms that we care for each other, now that we’ve defeated the capitalists and done away with the attendant alienation. We thus “don’t feel alone, or the weight of the stone.”

Waters also acknowledges that he’s a dog himself, as a wealthy member of a successful 70s band…and as the then-spouse of a British aristocrat! (He thus seems, as a critic of capitalism, to be acknowledging his ‘canine nature’ in anticipation of the old tu quoque retort.)

To be fair, though, we all need a home, even the bourgeois; accordingly, socialists strive to provide homes for everyone. “A shelter from pigs on the wing,” those dangerous ideologues who try to charm us with the empty promises of the “free market,” promises that will come true only when pigs grow wings.