I am always curious how narrative works….how it is imposed on events from the authority structure. Government, police, military, etc.
The Anaheim Police narrative is the most transparent. In fact, it’s almost childlike. The “official” police narrative is always triggered by a few specific words ( crowd, unruly, melee, documented gang member, etc.). In this case the police narrative simply reads like a bad TV cop show. “The police were securing the area as they looked for evidence”. However if one looks at the photos posted in several So Cal newspapers,
a different narrative emerges. The fact that the Anaheim Police have a record of harassment and abuse would in and of itself, contradict the official narrative, but beyond that, we have photo evidence which simply doesn’t support the TV cop story.
Here is a transcript of the Aurora Police department immediately after they arrived at the reported violence on opening night of Dark Knight Rises.
cop 3 – “everyone hold the air one second, cars where that white car in the rear of the lot, is that a suspect?”
cop 2 – “YES! we’ve got rifles, gas masks, I’ve got a open door going into the theater, OK hold that position, hold that suspect!”
There is a quality suggestive of the confusion going on. The jargon of police drama as we’ve learned it, is somehow missing. In other words, there is something that reflects the chaos of violence and mass death. Of murder. It’s not exaggerated….though a bit in conflict of the official police story released later …its just that it isn’t what “audiences” expect. And news is now entertainment and we consume “news” stories such as this. The Aurora story is very dramatic because it contains mass murder, by definition, and it contains, even if a bit indirectly, celebrity and DC comics’ Batman. It’s worth noting, too, that something is lurking at the edges of the Aurora story that suggests a second suspect.
The Anaheim police assault on the public has less lurid elements, since only ONE person died, and that person was dead at the hands of the Police….ergo, the story will officially be squashed as much as possible. No celebrities visiting the hospital the next day, no PR machine from Time Warner, and no wealthy neighborhoods involved. The Anaheim narrative will punch words like “gang” and “unruly crowd” over and over.
Joe Nava makes a great observation in his review of Dark Knight Rises, here
The villain, Bane, and his unruly threatening horde are all dark, exotic looking, unshaven and swarthy…Asian, black, and mixed race. Batman looks like a SWAT team leader… about to, uh, ….break up an unruly crowd in, well, Anaheim.
The discourse of power is going to be the starting point for the official organs of that power….corporate news papers, even local (ish) ones….
The language of the authority structure is, however, losing efficacy. They are, quite possibly, victims of their own demand at saturation. How many episodes of how many TV cops shows have been aired over the last forty years? Grains of sand on the beaches of the world.
In Aurora, a new narrative is being composed to explain James Holmes. Same as people continue to compose narratives here in Norway about Breivik. The Holmes story, the Columbine shooter, all the way back to Charles Manson, these stories will be officially based on and oriented to a magnetic pole that is AUTHORITY — the foundation of all that is good in the USA, in white christian society now under attack from those swarthy, asian black latino hordes being controlled by Bane — in whom we see echos of Hannibal Lector — and in which the subtle hatred of the intellectual is expressed — and whose ‘unruly crowd’ resembles Palestinians throwing rocks, Anaheim teens throwing rocks, OWS protesters NOT throwing rocks — but all faced with the anonymous kevlar helmeted soldiers of RIGHT and VIRTUE.
Traverso’s book The Origins of Nazi Violence, pointed out that a fulcrum was reached, culturally, morally and collectively somehow, in WW1. Anonymous mass death, industrialized killing, with gas mask wearing, helmeted figures killing those they couldn’t see and who couldn’t see them. De-personalized murder.
That figure, the gas mask wearing helmeted WW1 soldier is reproduced in every SWAT team in the US and Europe, and in Bane, and in Batman himself. In fact in all Marvell and DC superheroes. The mask, the hard carapace insect like emotionless disseminator of violence.
There is much more to say about the narrative implications of this trajectory from WW1 to todays OWS protests and poor neighborhoods across the US. The insertion of comic book narratives, or elements of those narratives and “characters”, has ratcheted up a more disembodied and subtly schizoid dynamic in the general viewers ‘reading’ of commodity ‘news’.
Interesting that the first formal description of attention deficit disorder came following W1 — when children recovering from the pandemic of encephalitis at that time, showed signs of a limited ability to concentrate and focus on any single topic. Then in the 1960’s, the first TV generation, the rate increased drastically, and it acquired the label ADD. (not surprisingly the most recent trend is to attribute a genetic link to ADD…..as is NOT attributing it to social conditions).
There are already reports of at least one other planned attack by a would-be killer at a movie theatre showing Dark Knight Rises. The system reproduces its narratives at an ever accelerated rate — and the nature of attention, the valorizing of same, the appropriation of same by corporate media, all plays into these narratives in ever more complex and more disturbing ways. More de-personalized and yet more narcissistic simultaneously.