Dec 2016

Manhattan Menetekel: Access Hollywood-Babylon

From Age-Old Prophecies to Latter-Day Realities

Late Night
Horror Picture Show

by Frederick A. Lubich

“Let us not talk falsely now, the hour is getting late.”
Bob Dylan, “All Along the Watchtower”

The hour of truth! Jehovah’s witnesses are back again … just like way back when … those mythic psychics, those modern media pundits … hearing those thunderbolts, seeing those desert storms, sensing that subterranean rumbling, that trembling of the wall, fearing that all those stones will be tumbling and that a hard rain is gonna fall![1]


Albrecht Dürer, “The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse”

“We are right at the edge of the abyss”
Jerry Falwell, Jr.[2]

You better watch those huddled masses
and their idol in his mighty tower,
rising triumphant over Manhattan,
oh how they long to share his power.

They are his wild-eyed Trojan Horse,
their vote is the writing on the wall,
oh how they lust for his future force,
feeding his hubris before the fall.

“When you are a star …. you can do anything.”
Donald Trump, “Access Hollywood”

Friedrich Dürrenmatt, “Apokalypse IV”

Toward Ground Zero

How they are racing toward the bottom
back to the future of ancient Babylon
like the Blond Beast in those prophecies,
charging the Shining City of Armageddon.

Dürrenmatt (2)
Friedrich Dürrenmatt, “Turmbau V: Nach dem Sturz”

Flashbacks and Final Fact Checks

In memoriam of so much more to come:
Remember the blitzkrieg over London!
Remember the firebombing of Dresden!

Hiroshima, the scorched earth of Vietnam!
The showering inferno of the Twin Towers!
So go see Manhattan – before it’s all gone!!

The world is still hanging in the balance,
but those global scales are quivering,
keeping us all in worldwide suspense.
Between Midwest and the Middle East

Allah’s Warriors and Jehovah’s Witnesses:
Behold that restless, roaming Blond Beast!

Always remember that “Triumph of the Will”
from the Nuremberg Laws to the Order to Kill!

And never ever forget that foreboding fable,
that sky-scraping tower of biblical Babel.


“Come senators, congressmen, please head the call,
don’t stand in the doorway, don’t’ block up the hall …”
Bob Dylan, “The Times, They Are A-Changin’.”

Don’t wait until it’s too late to stop all those waterfalls inside and outside those gilded halls. Remember the fire and brimstone, remember the deluge! It is the underworld’s ultimate subterfuge!! Some say, all this is wrought by the Wrath of God. Well, forget all your firewalls and water gates, it is our own anger and hatred that will seal our fate. Our wars are man-made wars … so stop gazing at all those late night stars …
Just read the daily papers! Earlier this year, they reported, that Kim Jong Un, the strongman from North Korea, has lately been saber rattling his nuclear missiles, claiming that he now has the ballistic capacity of actually reaching New York City. And when you are mad and mighty, such things are easily said and done … and all that the Lose Gun of Manhattan would have to do is to insult the Rocket Rattler from Pyongyang … and then … when that hard rain, that heavy water is going to fall … it will be over … once and for all.

Norfolk, Virginia, October 2016[3]


Picture Credit

Albrecht Dürer, “The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse”. In Gothic and Renaissance Art in Nuremberg, 1330-1550. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York & Germanisches Nationalmuseum, Nuremberg: Prestel-Verlag, Munich, 1986, p, 273.

Friedrich Dürrenmatt, “Apokalypse IV” & “Turmbau V: Nach dem Sturz“. Reprinted with kind
permission by Schweizerisches Literaturarchiv, Centre Dürrenmatt Neuchâtel, Switzerland.


[1] “Mene, mene, tekel, upharsim” are the Aramaic words which, according to the Book of Daniel in the Old Testament, appeared in King Belshazzar’s temple in ancient Babylon as an ominous premonition of his empire’s imminent doom. According to evangelical prophecy, the ultimate doomsday is associated with a millennial trajectory, in other words, with the apocalyptic vision, that the end of the world will come at the conclusion of a millennium. In German, the expression “Menetekel” is used to this day to describe the sinister signs of a looming catastrophe.

[2] Jerry Falwell, Jr. is the current president of Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, the largest Christian university in America. He is the son of the late Jerry Falwell, Sr., who was one of this country’s most prominent fundamentalists, one of those Latter-Day Saints and Sinners, who love to preach St. John’s “Secret Revelation” and the world’s final eclipse, the Second Coming of the Whore of Babylon and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Jerry Falwell, Jr. remained a devout supporter of Trump’s candidacy for the American presidency. Even after the latter’s shameful “Secret Revelations” on the road to “Access Hollywood” on Oct. 7, 2016, Falwell Junior came to his evangelical rescue, arguing that fundamentally speaking “We’re all sinners”.

[3] This text crystallized when I attended a literature conference in Salt Lake City, the national capital of the Latter-Day Saints in the beginning of October 2016 and soon afterwards began to circulate among friends and colleagues. The text adumbrates the worst case scenario, the American nightmare of a nuclear holocaust. The following counter-piece “Make America Great Again: The Perfect Solution to our Latter-Day Sexual Revolution” delineates – vice versa – a possible best case scenario and ultimately illuminates again the utopian promise of the American Dream. Ironically, a few days after this text’s publication in Glossen’s “Recent Posts”, the Tabernacle Choir of the Latter-Day Saints would agree to provide the choral background to Donald Trump’s inauguration jubilee.



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