I grew up on George Carlin, which explains a lot about me really. All joking aside, he was like having an inappropriate uncle full of wisdom and dirty words. Over the course of my entire growing up experience we would sit down to hear the latest HBO special from Brother George, to learn something new about ourselves, to laugh at what needed laughing at, and to experience that man's particular genius with words.
Now that he's gone, and that still doesn't seem possible, there's a glurge of people out there penning their own half-ass attempts to capture that unique combination of cynicism and whimsy that made Carlin one of the greatest of all time. That's fine, except they then sign his name on them, and that is not cool at all, son. You can't just elevate your crap to the level of a master with a forward button or a macro. You've got to earn that.
Since Carlin in gone, I thought I'd drop in real quick with four of the email essays I find infecting my newsfeed recently that Carlin absolutely did not say in hopes that when you see them in the future you will know that whoever felt the need to share it was basically indulging in intellectual extortion. You can Google the full texts if you must. I'm sticking with the highlighted quotes that prove they could not possibly be Carlin.
We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom. We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.
One really great way to test out whether a contemporary person like Carlin said something is to read in their voice in your head. Try it now with this, and may I recommend Class Clown-era Carlin. See, even with old George at his hippiest this saccharine dollop of doodoo just does not work.
The piece is part of a longer work called "The Paradox of Our Time" and was originally penned by a former pastor of Seattle's Overlake Christian Church. Carlin isn't the only person who has been roped into being the author of this. The Dalai Lama and an anonymous Columbine High School student have also been co-opted.
Carlin himself debunked the piece while still alive, calling it a "sappy load of shit." It's hard to imagine George saying we prayed too seldom. In general he treated prayer as less productive than masturbation.
I believe the money I make belongs to me and my family, not some midlevel governmental functionary with a bad comb-over who wants to give it away to crack addicts squirting out babies.
I think owning a gun doesn't make you a killer.
I believe that if you are selling me a Big Mac, you'd better do it in English.
These are all part of an obnoxious email that started circulating in 2011 called "I am a Bad American," and its veracity can be best traced by the fact that it is also occasionally attributed to Ted Nugent. If you believe Ted Nugent and George Carlin have anything in common besides scrotums and three-syllable names then you probably sip tea made from unfluoridated water in an Info Wars mug.
Again, I encourage you to read it in Carlin's voice, perhaps one from the later angry parts of his career like "You Are All Diseased." It still doesn't fly. Even at his meanest Carlin had no respect for people that didn't care about the actuality of raising children in bad situations.
From Back in Town, "Pro-life... You don't see many of these white anti-abortion women volunteering to have any black fetuses transplanted into their uteruses, do you? No, you don't see them adopting a whole lot of crack babies, do you? No, that might be something Christ would do. "Flashback Every Vampire Lord Superiority Monologue is Utter Bullshit, And I Can Prove It
Then there's this bit from an essay called "The Death of Common Sense" that people often attribute to Carlin...
He watched in pain as good people became ruled by self-seeking lawyers and enlightened auditors. His health rapidly deteriorated when schools endlessly implemented zero tolerance policies, reports of six-year-old boys charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate, a teen suspended for taking a swig of mouthwash after lunch, and a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student. It declined even further when schools had to get parental consent to administer aspirin to a student but cannot inform the parent when the female student is pregnant or wants an abortion.
Finally, Common Sense lost his will to live as the Ten Commandments became contraband, churches became businesses, criminals received better treatment than victims, and federal judges stuck their noses in everything from Boy Scouts to professional sports.
As I previously pointed out, any mention of religion in a positive way pretty much negates the possibility that Carlin said it. He did not think highly of religious belief, right up until the time he died. The fact that people keep attempted to attach his name to some last ditch, "We've left God behind!" message just proves its desperation.
More subtly, the people that co-opt Carlin for these reposts (The original was by author Lori Borgman, and even it has been re-written by some pissed off conservative for this dreck) is this sly plot to try and turn Carlin into some anti-federal regulation crusader. Carlin railed against the government, sure, but mostly over things like war and poverty. He hated the PC crowd, true, but it had nothing to do with judges. It was more individuals taking it upon them selves to wage moral crusades... like this one.
Lastly, this piece is called "Hurricane Rules" about Hurricane Katrina and it comes in handy list form so that this article goes all list-ception on your asses.
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#5. My tax money should not pay to rebuild a 2 million dollar house, a sports stadium or a floating casino. Also, my tax money shouldn't go to rebuild a city that is under sea level. You wouldn't build your house on quicksand would you? You want to live below sea-level, do your country some good and join the Navy.
#6. Regardless of what the Poverty Pimps Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton want you to believe, The US Government didn't create the Hurricane as a way to eradicate the black people of New Orleans; (Neither did Russia as a way to destroy America). The US Government didn't cause global warming that caused the hurricane (We've been coming out of an ice age for over a million years).
#7. The government isn't responsible for giving you anything. This is the land of the free and the home of the brave, but you gotta work for what you want. McDonalds and Wal-Mart are always hiring, get a damn job and stop spooning off the people who are actually working for a living. President Kennedy said it best..."Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country."
Of all the statements hung on Carlin, this one is the worst. The absolute worst. It's a parade of semi-racist bullshit designed to make people who couldn't be bothered to help in a tragedy feel better by assigning the victims undesirable qualities to alleviate that pesky social conscience that is supposed to keep us in line in times such as hurricanes. You want to know how Carlin really felt about how the victims of Katrina were treated? Watch the video up above where he opens his arguments with, "It shouldn't be a surprise rich white people don't care about poor black people."
I want to end with this... stealing a man's name to lend credit to your own argument is the worst kind of something-for-nothingism. It is a parasitic act far below the mythical welfare queen or even the work of vampire bats, who are at least cool. Brother George's words helped shaped me into the man I am today. I would hate for my daughter to be shaped by lies shoved in his dead mouth.