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Uploaded on Apr 4, 2010
For those who would rather read than listen - here are some highlights of the manifesto. Feel free to copy and distribute:
G-rated shock value would have to be terrifying or traumatic enough to excite disturbing emotions without the use of themes containing sex, language, nudity, or bloodshed. But is there anything outside of these listed categories that's capable of shocking anybody? Possibly. Combining distant objects in strange ways seems to work quite well. Some pretty shocking paintings from the surrealist masters exist that have never posed a threat to any G-rated criteria.
This combination of distant objects can take on many forms, each more extreme than the next. I've tried to explore as many forms as I could until I reached the furthest extreme currently available in my exploration of shock. First I tried anachronism, but it wasn't enough, then I moved to paradoxes, but they weren't enough either. There's only one thing left I can think of. Complete contradiction. And perhaps one day even that won't be enough.
What makes contradiction so shocking is it's a form of twisted perversion that attacks the firm foundation of human logic. For if logic doesn't work, what does? The more I looked into it, the more I found contradiction to be the backbone of ALL shock value, G-rated or not. But G-rated shock value takes shock value one step further than surrealism or psychedelia by its very NAME. The reason G-rated shock value sounds contradictory is because it IS contradictory. Upon first hearing it, one is put into an immediate state of confusion. The idea of an object being more innocent than the G-rated Sesame Street and more shocking than Rob Zombie's R-rated hooligan clan is almost unimaginable.
Finding a way to mesh the best qualities of the G-rating and the R-rating is a wonderful step in the exploration of contradiction, which I always felt was neglected. We explore every section of logic we can think of, which is a wonderful thing, but why limit ourselves to that? We can explore things like music, art, and literature, all day, but until we study something like the contradiction that actually attacks logic, we're limiting ourselves. Do we avoid attacking logic because we feel it is too flawless to attack? I hope not. I'm sure that even logic has its flaws and is not always an accurate representation of truth. Too much weird stuff in the world for logic to always work. Sometimes I find an irrational and inconsistent person more trustworthy than a completely consistent person, because that consistent person probably spent a whole night coming up with lies to be as consistent as he is. Still, logic is by far the best and most consistent method we have of exploring truth for the time being. Perhaps one day the study of contradiction and other anti-logical stuff will be a better way of discovering truth, but I think truth is overrated anyway. Truth is more inconsistent than lies.
Since G-rated shock value is an attempt to break frontiers and access untapped markets, it is clearly a PROGRESSIVE philosophy. It's about raising the bar and moving into the future. It tosses away the old stereotype of the G-rating being for kids and it also dismisses the throwback attitude of yearning for the good old days of Andy Griffith or Donna Reed. Those days are over and they're not coming back. In some ways they were good while they lasted, but we've progressed, and now it's time for something else that's good. So Bill O'Reilly or whoever is fighting some "culture war" thinking they can win by regressing to some past times, forget it. Fighting a "culture war" through politics is stupid anyway. If you're going to fight a culture war, fight it culturally.
Another thing that G-rated shock value is NOT about is purity. It's about showing the AGGRESSIVE and rebellious side of innocence rather than the pure side of it. It is the dark, poisoned, offensive, evil and nightmarish side of the G-rating, the side that doesn't plan on losing to the R-rating, even when it plays the R-rated game. But it's still a refined and gentlemanly evil, an evil with taste, class, and style...willingly censoring itself and not even requesting its competition to be censored. Handicapping the trite and often tasteless shock value formula of the R-rating through censorship would be a direct insult to G-rated shock value's confidence in achieving dominance on its own.
More than refined and gentlemanly, G-rated shock value is also dignified. It's about being as evil as possible without really doing anything tasteless or wrong.
But it really has nothing to do with morality. It's ALL about style.