Social media desaster at Munich rampage

Friday at 5:50 pm Munich fell into a state of chaos after an 18 years old started a shooting orgy at McDonalds Olympia shopping center. He killed 9 innocent people, mainly other teenagers, among them 7 of non-German origin.

It appeared that the gunman (Ali or David Sunboly), born here in Munich as son of Iranian parents was suffering of depression. Police records also indicate that he has been mobbed by his peers and experienced physical violence by other youngsters on several occasions. It is said that he purchased the gun, a 9mm Glock, via the dark net. The weapon had been re-assembled from a defunct one as they are frequently used for theater performances or in the film industry.

The social media failed completely in providing any useful information during the 3-4 hours of the event. More and more shooting cases were erroneously reported from other parts of the city, therefore causing more and more confusion and hysteria on the streets. And instead of circulating essential and useful information of how to find a safe shelter and how to help other people, the social media were overflowed with messages full of speculations of a political, usually an islamistic background. This lead people belive what they all were expecting anyway:  that at the end Germany could be struck by ISIS led terror the same way as Paris. But nothing of all this was true. At the end it appeared that the rampage had more in common  with the Columbine school shootings than with the Boston marathon bombings or the Orlando nightclub shooting. The Munich gunman had not got a political agenda at all, but was seeking revenge for being victimized over years. It is now thought he targeted youngsters of “Turkish and Arab” origin, having claimed those groups had picked on him in school.

munich Shooting

Ali (David) Sonboly, the teenage boy who shot dead 9 people in Munich,and friends and relatives commemorating the victims.

It was only a few weeks before that I had discovered the function of Twitter, when during the 2016 ESC awards and later at the Brexit votum people on a Europe wide scale quickly exchanged their thoughts and comments. In both cases, however instant informaton was mainly a tool for infotainement. But on Friday, electronic information had an essential function for guiding people away from the danger. And here the social media failed completely.

When I called Marina at 6:40 pm, i.e. 50 min after the shooting had started, she was riding in the train through the city center, without knowing anything. For some reasons all public transport (subway, busses, tram) had been stopped right away, apart from trains which were still operating without informing the passengers.

There were thousands of police man and woman, including special riot squads (SEK, GSG 9, austrian Cobra) heading towards Munich city center, because the initial reports mentioned three gunman with automated attack rifles (what was also first communicated via Twitter/Facebook/Whatsapp). At the end it was a single suicide attacker with a 9mm gun, who killed himself 30 min after starting the shooting.

A selfmade video from a tennant nearby the site of the shooting was released the same day. It documents the loud shouting match between the shooter, who was pacing on the top floor of a nearby parking garage, and Thomas Selby, 57, a truck driver who was looking at him from the balcony of his appartment.

Their calls back and forth, including a third person who joined in, are translated here from the German transcript (including explicit words):

Neighbor: “You’re the son of a bitch”

Shooter: “Yes, because of people like you have harassed me for seven years.”

Neighbor: “You’re a son of a damned bitch.”

Shooter: “And now I have to buy a gun in order to shoot you.”

Neighbor: “A gun?  Go fuck yourself, bloody foreigner.”

Shooter: “I’m a German.”

Neighbor: “You’re a son of a bitch,  that’s what you are.”

Shooter: “Stop taking pictures of me.”

Neighbor: “You stupid alien asshole, what are you doing here?”

Shooter: “I was born here.”

Third voice: “shit foreigners.”

Neighbor: “What the hell do you think you’re doing.”

Shooter: “I grew up here in Hartz IV (a social welfare scheme).”

Neighbor: “You’re a son of a bitch, I told you.”

Shooter: “You’re right, you’re right, you’re right.”

Brexiteers and Arsonists

I don’t understand all the emotions around the Brexit. O.k., here we have two or three british politicians, who (as a good and lovely tradition) consider their job as sports activity (well, honestly it is fairly badly paid for this).

So they obviously had a bet (like this one: “What do I get when I ask this marvellous lady for a date ?”), while playing politics in real, not in an Oxford debating society. So everybody was surprised when the marvellous lady agreed to have a date with them late at night in a hotel room. No wonder, now when it gets serious, the three caballeros all lost their courage. How to get out of the trouble, what to tell the lady without upsetting her to much. And what to tell the brave wife at home (aka the EU fellows), where they have been the whole night through ?

The natural solution (with nobody losing its face) would be to call for a early snap election for the house of commons.

If Labour and the LDP are supporting Remain (and blame the Brexit torries and UKIP for putting Scotland at risk), than they will either win (at least in a coalition) or they put the torries so much under pressure that they have to support the Remain as well.

And Now: Something completely stupid

The daily culture program 3Sat Kulturzeit did a nice orbituary for the Iranian film director Abbas Kiarostami.

At the end the programs speaker Cécile Schortmann (picture below) tried to make an intelligent jump to the next report (about cinema in Lebanon) my saying “… and now jumping to another arab country ….”.  If Abbas Kiarostami would have heared this …..

https://www.3sat.de/imperia/md/images/_standrad/moderatoren_2009/schortmann_n_481.jpg

Boolean algebra of love

Elie Wiesel, the philosopher, writer, holocaust survivor, died yesterday at the age of 87. But he should also be remembered as as contributor to the boolean algebra of love. He discovered that “The opposite of love is not hate, but ignorance”.

Rain drops on lips

In New York it is still The 24th of May, and hence still on time to commemorate Bob Dylans birthday. I had to think about his song “A Hard Rain’s gonna fall” today, when somebody at our institute told me about the soon beginning of the muslim Ramadan. This year it will be right in the middle of summertime, and I can not imagine how one can live and work more than 12 hours in the summer heat with no drinking.
But maybe a relief could come from heaven itself. If during Ramadan a summer rain starts, and one believes in a higher deity, than he/she can assume that this rain is send by God, right ? So is it o.k. than to lick the rain drops from ones lips ? I mean from ones owns lips !!  Maybe I should ask somebody of the large Arab carawanes, for whom Munich serves as a summer camp, with medical treatments and endless shoping facilities. Could it be that they like to come here during Ramadan, for the high chance to get some rain in June or July, and liking the raindrops from their lips ?

Summer Nuisance

A reply to “High on Words: London Spring

Seems there is little chance to escape the nuisance of spring. and don’t excpect any relief when summer comes. I remember a day in August, hoping to find some tranquility in Richmond Park. But soon I felt annoyed by a strang clapping sound, as if millions of elves were beating the dust off their tiny bedside rugs. The real cause, however, was much more secular: It appeared that thousands of butterflies (perhaps from Spain or Italy, who cares) made this noise with their blue wings.

https://i2.wp.com/www.webexhibits.org/causesofcolor/images/content/blueMorphoZ.jpg

I think there should be an ammendement written to the Rules for Richmond Park Visitors: “Butterflies are kindly ask to avoid any intense clapping sound with their wings between 1 and 6 p.m.”

Lars, my friend …

I know that there is nobody on Lars Gustafssons blog any more to edit the comments.  I am extremely sad that one of the greatest literature spirits of our modern world had passed away. It is just a week ago that I had such a nice time when I found your latest novel “Dr. Waters recepie” in the book shop.  We will desperately miss your wonderful words, your phantasy that explained to us the mysteries of the world a little bit better.

 

Portrait of the Artist

 

 

 

Dead white Rose

It was always clear that Axl Rose was nothing but a poser (in his youth). With his skinny, bony, sweaty body barely covered in filthy XXXL underwear, he might have managed to frighten some audience, so they just overheared his creepy voice. Now with all the signs of an aged, worn out body, he is simply making a fool of himself by trying to practice the same old habits on stage like he did 20 years ago. Soon he will join the Zombie faction of dead white males.

Sunday morning anti-religious service

It is Sunday morning, and as every time I just passed along the church (while doing the walk with our dog), that only during these 2 hours is open and visited by the people from the village around. They use to “fulfill” their christian duty, by gathering there for the catholic service, listen to a speach by the priest (who, as much as I understand, is from India) and sing songs that always sound like on a funeral.

At least they never tried to baptize me, when I say “Hello” to them after they leave the church and still hang around for a while to discuss privat issues.  I think they know quite well that I have a fundamentaly different view on religion. If they keep it for their own privat wellbeing, it is perhaps better than drinking booze or taking crystal. But if anybody tries to get religion out of the church, into politics and spoils the public media and undermines democracy, I might really get angry a lot. We can see what is the result of this in Poland, Pakistan or recently in Gambia.

Sounds as if there are only two thinks in your life: professional career (in a field that remains unclear to the reader) and family obligations (that seem to be more a burden than a pleasure). Is it religion that tries to make people believe that the reward for all this comes only after death ? This is the reason why societies where religion (islam, hindi, christianity) dominates politics and social life are all suffering from cultural and economic stagnation. And the people, deep inside, stay unhappy, since religion is (as Marx said very wisely) nothing more than Opium for the people. Some preachers can offer transcental relief from the daily life challenges. But after a while (like after a narcotic rush) people wake up again, and have this “cold turkey” because nothing in reality has changed their life.
In particular, the religious leaders and their books like to keep the people in complete unfreedom, because that way they can dominate their lifes. The imams and the priests should better let the people live their own lifes, and don’t tell them what to do and what to leave. If they want to serve mankind, they should go in hospitals fore the poor and in refugee camps, there they can work preparing meal or distributing closes.

 

 

Nothing makes one so sexy as success – JOY by David O Russell

I have to admitt, there is no doubt: Nigeria or India might produce more movies than any other nation, and maybe in France or Italy the national cinematography is more recognised as part of their cultural identity, and in Germany movie production perhaps receives higher state sponsoreship than anywhere else. But when it comes to creativity and quality, nothing can compete with movies from the US. And I don’t mean the blockbusters like Star Wars or the like. I am talking about the movies that have a great personal story to tell (like all the Woody Allen ones), or movies that by the experimental style will stay in our mind for years (like the David Lynch or Robert Altmann or Jim Jarmush ones).

Yesterday we went to watch “Joy” by David O. Russell.  Although it plays in US lower middleclass, its characters so much reminded me of the figures that some decades ago were frequently portrait in east-german movies who portrait young woman and their struggle against a society pre-determine fate.

On paper, “Joy,” looks perfectly straightforward, even square. It’s a bootstrap-capitalist fable, a tale of adversity overcome and rags exchanged for riches, a case study in success suitable for a self-improvement seminar. But Mr. Russell likes to tell conventional stories in unconventional ways.  Joy Mangano (Jennifer Lawrence) finds herself thwarted and undermined by her own family. In the film’s opening scenes, her various relations nearly erase her altogether, blocking Ms. Lawrence’s quiet incandescence with ugliness and noise. The divorced mother of two young children, Joy left college when her parents split up and now contends daily with a small army of needy narcissists. Her mother, Terry (Virginia Madsen), lies in bed all day watching a soap opera (a fake one that Mr. Russell has cast with real-life soap opera stars). Rudy (Robert De Niro), Terry’s ex-husband, acts like a helpless child when he’s single and like an entitled patriarch when there’s a woman in his life. Joy also has a passive-aggressive sister (Elisabeth Rohm) and an ex-husband of her own, who is living in her basement until his singing career takes off.

Just when you begin to wonder where the movie is going — Toward domestic comedy? Second-chance romance? Lurid dysfunction? — Joy has an idea. Sketching with her children’s crayons, she invents a new kind of mop, the kind that can be wrung out without touching the head. (This household convenience really exists, and the character is very loosely based on its inventor and her career.) Flush with entrepreneurial zeal, Joy borrows money from her father’s new companion (a supremely haughty Isabella Rossellini), works out the patent and supply-chain issues, and prepares to revolutionize American floor cleaning.

What struck me during the film:  There was obviously (and acustic unmistakably) a large crowd of female activists in the cinema. During the first 30 minutes of the movie they used to giggle a lot, because there were plenty of scenes showing the silly men around Joy (her dad and her ex-husband). I had the feeling the feminist faction came to the movie mainly for this reason. Later, however, when Joy started to fight her way through the odds and step by step had some success, the woman in the audience get more and more speachless.  I guess they also did not like the idea of the movie that Joy during her fight through the capitalist system did not lose her physical beauty. I read through a couple of viewers comments today at IMDB, and it very much confirmes my observation: the comments by female critics are devastating (“movie is boring”, “not realistic” etc etc),  wheras the mans gave it high credits and recommended it).

The movie also demonstrated the old paraphrase that nothing is so sexy as success.

And I have to mention the great sound-track:

CREAM (“I Feel Free”), SERGEJ PROKOVJEFF (“Cinderella”), RANDY NEWMANN (“Mama Told Me Not To Come”), CARSON PARKS (“Something Stupid”), NEIL YOUNG (“Expecting To Fly”) and many other, including classical guitar and chamber mus8ic pieces.

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