Seriously, Is There A Bigger Scumbag On Earth Than Piers Morgan?

Smarmy, self-assured and arrogant. If you asked Piers Morgan to describe himself in three words, irrefutably he would stretch out an immeasurable paragraph as to why he believes himself to be the most valuable resource that Earth has to offer. If this were true, I’m sure we’d have pressed more to find a way to immigrate to a different planet. What about him makes him one of the most controversial and disputed figures in Britain?

Recently, I have become one of the 2.1 Million people that follow Piers Morgan on Twitter. However, I’m following him for all of the wrong reasons, as I’m sure a sizable proportion of his followers are. Rather than to find out if he’s done his ironing or to see where CNN have shipped him off to, I follow Morgan to keep track of his endless Twitter arguments with other celebrities. BBC Football pundit Gary Lineker seems to be the latest target in which Morgan fires his venomous words at, thankfully, to no avail due to Lineker’s wit and fan base. More persistently, Morgan has carried on a feud with business tycoon Lord Alan Sugar, who have been at each others throats since December 2010.

These tweets seem to more of a bullying nature, rather than the velvet lexical formations of a world renowned journalist, as Morgan seems to try and provoke people such as Sugar and Lineker. Similarly, this needless plaguing and harassment mirrors Morgans interviewing style, which has again, been some subject to contention. Interviews with such public figures from this side of the Atlantic and over with out American cousins have seen their fair share of heat and vigor. In particular, Christine O’Donnell of the American Republican Party was forced to walk off her interview with Morgan on CNN due to his disrespectful, rude tone. From politicians to magicians, Penn Jilette, the larger half of Magic act Penn and Teller, came under scrutiny for his beliefs over religion. Jilette had discussed his atheist beliefs in his latest book, while Morgan, a raised Catholic, criticised Jilette’s closed mindedness.

Despite his personal ideology being his only tool to bring to the table to his guests, other than his excruciatingly obvious arrogance, there is more to be painted to the miserable painting of Piers Morgan. One aspect in particular emphasises the devil behind Morgans celebrity status. The 2004 Iraqi photo hoax lead to Morgan being sacked from The Mirror newspaper. Morgan, as the editor of the paper, published “crude hoax photographs” of the Queens Lancashire Regiment abusing and beating Iraqi prisoners. Consqeuently, Morgans actions in publishing these photographs, given the sensitivity of the subject at the time and also due to the obvious questionability regarding the validity of the photo’s, and lead to his dismissal from The Mirror. Morgan’s actions prompted Iraqi revenge attacks on British forces over in Iraq which left some British troops dead. Why Morgan was never trialled for his traceable involvement in a hoax story that lead to the deaths of innocent British soldiers, I will never know.

I can slag off Piers Morgan until the grass grows, but that’s not the point that I’m getting at. As someone who is more than keen in finding a career in journalism, it becomes more and more difficult to remain undeterred by people like Morgan who share my aspired profession. As a person who evidently values money over the lives of respected human beings fighting for our country, he represents the black mark that smudges the reputation of journalism. Ironically, journalists are mediated by other journalists who cry to the public over how honesty in the reporting circuit his hard to find, with writers merely looking for a story and nothing more.

This perception angers me, as it must do with the majority of journalists who enjoy their work and see it as an art form, as well as an adored occupation. Stories such as The News Of The World phone hacking scandal, in which Piers Morgan is also accused of doing, signifies the disgraceful and abhorrent minority of broadcasters and communicators who strive so hard for a newsworthy story that they forget their own personal norms and identity. Perhaps this is just part of the game? Maybe some will argue that I too, if I am fortunate to join the elite circuit, will fall victim to abusing and mocking those in order to extract information or breaking all manner of conduct in order to get a story?

Simply, I think not. Morals are something you carry with you over your life and that rarely get away from you. Momentarily, we all have slips of morality and personal obedience to our own conscious knowledge of right and wrong. However, I strongly believe that it takes a large shift in brain chemistry and environment to know when your wrongs can be breached and your rights ignored. As for Piers Morgan, his deficiency is clear. He is an insincere, autocratic and entirely vile excuse for a human specimen that shames journalists as an entity. He epitomizes everything wrong with journalists and everything immoral and sadistic about the humankind.

So Piers, you can carry on publishing hoax photographs, abusing people on twitter and you can continue to wedge yourself further and further up Robin Van Persie’s arse. I’m taking the high road that most honest and artistic journalists take. If I’m not successful on the way, at least I never have to be mentioned under the same breath as you.

Most people are hardwired with a moral sense of consciousness. Piers Morgan is the diluted and evil exception.

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Coachella Festival 2012 – Watching Old Ghosts Perform Again.

This years Coachella festival in California brought up one of the edgiest and provocative moments in musical history with the performance of the late Tupac Shakur in Hologram form. Was this projection a testament to his legacy or an economical exploit?

 I really couldn’t believe it when I heard about Tupac’s ‘guest’ appearance during Dr Dre and Snoop Dog’s headline set at California’s prestigious Coachella festival last weekend. Nor could I apprehend the level of realism the Tupac imagery would indeed have. However, one thing I did predict correctly, along with a lot of people, is the conflicting opinions in regard to this technological and musical embrace. Taking a step back, initially it does draw an exciting picture of possibilities when it comes to live performances. Imagine being at lengthy, mundane gig that’s not living up to expectations when your favourite musician suddenly appears on stage from beyond the grave. That’s certainly one way of the lifting the general anesthetic at a boring concert.

But is that the true purpose of these holograms? The purpose of Dr Dre and Snoop Dog vivid imagination in bringing one of their valiant own back from the grave for a six minute performance was clearly a genuine act of musical legacy and remembrance. Regrettably, their act of stage-man brilliance, I fear, will result in the pockets of those we hate most of all being filled with green paper generated by this very concept. They bring the people what they want, but for the vilest of reasons. One thing music has taught me on my short time on this planet, is that money plays a bigger part in music then it was ever intended on doing.

This very corporate oppression is what has given us some of the most memorable acts and timeless eras in music. Nirvana and the grunge-pop ’90’s dominance, the punk movement and working class persona’s of bands that have literally made it from the street into the recording studio and on to the stage. Tupac himself was more of an artist than a man draped in riches, although he was a wealthy man, as many people know. More delicately, making money off of dead celebrities if they were hypothetically brought back to life in the arrangement of a hologram is the likelihood of damaging the reputation of these celebrities. Clearly, for those who do not know how complex these hologram images are to compose, like myself, when it is done wrong very little can be left to the imagination. Tupac’s choreographed moves at Coachella and speech code did evidently come off as spectacular, and the controversy he created reflected that of his former flesh and bone life. But one slip of the programmers finger could destroy the legacy of a performer forever.

Image if Ian Curtis, the infamously melancholy tortured soul of post-punk outfit Joy Division, was brought back to the dust of the stage via hologram image and he cracked a smile during a performance. Ian Curtis smiling? That’s about as likely as Alan Hansen getting a haircut that doesn’t make him look like Captain Scarlet, or Coldplay releasing an album that isn’t dosed to the brim in their own pretentious, self-indulgent trademark shit. I don’t want to see Kurt Cobain holding his guitar in the wrong way, I don’t want to see Amy Winehouse strolling on the stage robotically and I don’t want to have to cringe at every nonsensical spike on Sid Vicious’ head that doesn’t quite resemble the living specimen from all those years ago.

That’s isn’t the half of it though. Before any antecedent discussions can be put forward by those parties interested in bringing back a few of our late favourites, there are a few ethical and consensual issues that need addressing. Assuming that anyone is indeed at all intrigued in this hologram project, which, if you ask me, is inevitable, than the companies looking to get involved need to seek some kind of consent from the deceased’s relatives. Hmm, the phone call that Courtney Love may be receiving would be interesting for any fly on the wall. Many families and loved ones, I’m sure, would reject the proposal. It must be hard enough dealing with their passing in the first place, never mind reliving the experience again every time the projector is turned on or off.

Perhaps reliving and reincarnating the ghosts of our past is another taboo best left alone. The Tupac saga, being the exception, was phenomenal. One of those truly implausible and and curious moments in music that seem to make complete sense and no sense at all all at the same time. And that, I’m afraid, is where it should end. Legacy can be created and destroyed in the blink of an eye.

If there is any danger in ruining those who brought joy to million, than why take that joy and remembrance away?

Listen to our discussion on this matter at http://www.sparksite.co.uk tonight between 7:00pm-8:00pm!

How So Many People Listen To You Is Beyond Me.

 Laura Marling once alleged that ‘talent, integrity and self-loathing’ are the ingredients to shape a successful virtuoso of poetry and artistry. A description that rings a lot of truth and relevance to a good portion of the musicians in circulation today. So why is that so many modern composers today rely on repetition, mediation and self-indulgence to storm the charts and get their records on peoples shelves? Today, I’m looking at the most overrated bands from past and present that regurgitate this very question.

Oasis – The Manchester based indie-pop merchants finally disbanded in 2009 after over a decade of pretentious pop rip-offs that rang too many similarities to the mutant offspring of The Beatles and The Smiths, as well as sucking off the Factory Records legacy like an unwanted parasite. Despite their mass popularity, all they really contributed to the cultural zeitgeist was the rocky relationship of two brothers made from the same carbon but born on two ends of the spectrum. Even three years since their split, Liam and Noel are still carrying on their bitter sibling rivalry to this day. It seems to me that the Gallagher rivalry became more famous than the band. Alternatives: Graham Coxon, Radiohead, Stone Roses, The Maccabees.

Mumford and Sons – People seem to think that the re-injection of folk music into mainstream music was the doing of banjo playing folk-merchants Mumford and Sons. However, Fleet Foxes had been stringing the silver bow and plucking the nylon string across the atlantic an entire year before Mumford and Sons formed in London. And if the cultural difference isn’t enough, artists such as Laura Marling, Noah and the Whale and Bombay Bicycle club had picked up the acoustic guitar before Mumford and Sons came to fame. Again, their legacy seems to be built on top of the foundations of others who are less recnognised. Alternatives: Fleet Foxes, Dog Is Dead, Stornoway, Bombay Bicycle Club.

U2 – Pretentious, over-produced, self-indulgent Irish rubbish. Harsh, but in my opinion, very, very true. Bono has been wheeling the ‘save Africa’ band wagon behind his dubious shades for over three decades now, and still people are oblivious to his own short comings. He may be a word famous tycoon in African charity propaganda, but he runs his operations on a private Island of the coast of South Ireland and gets around the governmental loop holes to stop himself paying taxes. Nice one Bono, that’ll go down well with the starving African children, knowing that their Messiah is as money-orientated as the rest of the ignorant world that oppresses them. Alternatives: R.E.M, Brian Eno, Radiohead, David Bowie.

Green Day – Come off it, Green Day. You’re not a punk band in the slightest. You had the divides and shards of potential to collect yourself into some sort of punk band with the release of Dookie in 1994, but it was all down hill from then on. With their odd alternation between punk and rock between albums, it’s never been abundantly clear how to liquidate Green Day and place them in a proper genre.Even so, everyone seemed to buy American Idiot in 2004. At the time, it was the album to have for teenagers. Since then, it’s just further emphasised Green Days lack of punk status. Alternatives: The Damned, The Buzzcocks, The Clash, Joy Division.

Coldplay – “Ooh, look at us. We’re Coldplay and we write really weird and interesting music about space and stuff”. No, you do not. All Coldplay do is write boring and generic pop songs that reflect the boring and generic, barely functionalist lives of the members of Coldplay and their fans. Yet another Radiohead rip-off trying to match the Oxfordshire kings of dystopian hymns’ creative complexity and influence. Even more annoyingly, Chris Martin and co have taken to creating a certain ‘movement’ in their music. I.e. They’re giving their fans free colour co-ordinated glow sticks and getting them to wave them in a cult-like manner. Cool. Alternatives: Animal Collective, Portishead, Interpol, Violens.

Guns ‘n’ Roses – The melting dynasty of Axl Rose is steaming away along with his sanity day by day. He’s gone from looking like a gay biker to looking like a gay magician in the space of twenty years. No person has since matched the amazing descent of being one of the most popular rock and roll bands in the world to being the abused captive of Axl Rose as he slowly loses his mind and kicks out any member who questions him. Living mesmorising wake of Nirvana never really gave Guns ‘n’ Roses a fair shout for the crown of rock and roll, and made them look like an average karaoke band instead. Sadly, something a lot of Americans seemed to enjoy. One thing is for sure though. They’ll never headline Reading festival again. Alternatives: Nirvana, Soundgarden, Pagoda, Sonic Youth.

Lady Gaga – Let’s be honest, you knew that the meat-dress wearing Madonna con artist was going to feature in this list from the moment you read the first sentence. Born straight from the feigned, domineering uterus of all-encompassing pop music, Gaga has spent her entire career feeding off of the perceptions and ideas of others and claiming it’s her own original creation. It’s a tragedy that her musical abilities don’t match her own self-importance and don’t reflect the Queen-like status she and her fans bestow upon the ‘Gaga’ fame. To speak crudely, I’ve produced farts with more creative relevance than lady Gaga. Alternatives: Lykke Li, Little Dragon, Bjork, Zola Jesus.

Jamiroquai – Pops biggest arsehole Jay Kay was, much like Gaga, was only going to be included in my humble little list. Please, someone give the man a crown. If you didn’t know, Jay Kay and his funk/pop outfit hold the title of ‘most pretentious act ever formed’. London’s answer to Jesus of Nazareth has flaunted his cash and mainstream success for years, making no bones about his opinion of himself in the process. Given the opportunity, Jay Kay would walk over everyone in the street just to assert his self-appointed alpha male status for making each new track sound like the one before. Alternatives: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Rage Against The Machine, Daft Punk, Groove Armada.

Chase And Status – An adored dance duo from London that rain true a furnace of urban chaos and street life that sticks in he throats of the ecstasy seeking fan base. Their citified rural impact would mirror their musical collectivity, if they had not both attended university and come from rich, middle-class backgrounds. Although their music is enjoyable and well produced for their particular genre, their genuine street credibility goes out of the window compared to grime and dance acts like Plan B and Dizzee Rascal. Alas, all could have be avoided if they aimed for the same stance and approach as other artists from similar backgrounds, like The Chemical Brothers. Alternatives: Friendly Fires, The Prodigy, SBTRKT, Happy Mondays.

Nickleback – It’s very fitting that we end the list on rock and roll’s whipping boys. Hard rocking spaniel-esque front man Chad Kroeger has tried his hardest to protect the ego of his fellow bandmates, and would have done a good job of doing so, if it wasn’t for his ridiculous hair. It seems that they are the only band desperately trying to keep the classic rock and roll torch burning with other bands streaming off to the more successful and interesting sub-streams and rock music. Chin up, Chad. It’s not like you’re openly criticised on a regular basis for continouly writing songs that address strippers, sex, prostitution, drugs and more sex. Oh, wait…  Alternatives: Black Keys, Pavement, The Libertines, Nirvana.