Elitist Jerks

It's been over a month since my last post here. The din that followed Obama's victory as President was, unfortunately, hastily silenced due to academic commitments and admittedly to my rekindled infatuation with a game called World of Warcraft. The balance between work and play however did not burden my intentions to write down a few words once in a while. Nonetheless its been quite a busy month on these little islands, at least on the political level. A series of events, all inter-connected in one way or another, has sparked talks of trade-union coalition only to be shot down again (most unfortunately) and a scandal-hit government is doing all in its power to alienate the populace.

Which brings me to Renzo Piano and the Mystical Gateway to New Parliament. They say he is the best in the world. They say 65 years is too long to continue dwelling on the prospective future of the Old Theater in Valletta, and its ruins must be transformed to a new Parliament building immediately. They say 60 to 80 million Euros is a noble investment in Valletta's infrastructure (tell it to the workers who are forced to work overtime to make ends meet and the mothers who cannot afford to work because they have no other choice but to tend to their children). They say that Parliament is a people's building and not exclusively made for politicians (yeah, right).

But my message is not to these people.

Others have braved the storm and protested. The ruined theatre should be restored to its splendid grandeur and not to some state of the art Parliament. Some have also suggested that it should be transformed into a great library. For what is theatre and literature if not the apex of human development? No other man or woman can depart from the genius that is Shakespeare, Mozart and Dostoyevsky. Maybe we should transform it into Debono's Palace of Thinking while we're at it; a grand edifice for the contemprary intellectual. Let's make Paris and Rome look trivial when compared to our beloved Valletta.

My sarcasm may be misleading. I have absolutely nothing against cultural innovation and expression. On the contrary I am four-square for it. It would be ideal to bring back humanism for it is a mighty weapon when ignorance for the most part reigns supreme. But I can never see eye to eye with those who want me to believe that culture begins and ends solely with the Great Works. I think that those that know me from the metal scene can infer that what we do is also a cultural expression. They know what devotion goes in to the music we compose. They know that it is a great achievement to create something you can call your own, though loud and extreme as it may be. They know that we get no coupons and that for the most part it's a very expensive business which reaps more losses than profits. For some it may be a way of life, others a temporary but beautiful dream. But it is there and you cannot neglect its existence.

So my friends keep up your efforts to bring Eco & Chomsky closer to home but do not be so blinded as to become an elitist jerk.

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