For many years, Michael Jackson wanted to be the voice of the voiceless.. the children.
This blog is a humble attempt to carry his voice to the world.

Before you judge him..
KNOW him!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Michael Jackson Children's Hospital

Most of you by now will have either heard, or heard of, Michael’s recording played during the prosecutions opening. Most of you will have also picked up on the fact that even under the heavy influence of drugs, his first thought was for others as he described his desire to build a hospital for children. Having listened to his heart-wrenching words, we, the fans, would like to make that dream of his come true.*

Michael's Own Words

“We have to be phenomenal. When people leave this show, when people leave my show, I want them to say, “I’ve never seen anything like this in my life. Go. Go. I’ve never seen nothing like this. Go. It’s amazing. He’s the greatest entertainer in the world. I’m taking that money, a million children, children’s hospital, the biggest in the world.”

“Michael Jackson's Children's Hospital"

Join us and take the pledge to support this project by sending your name and country of residence to

MJCH Website

MJCH Facebook Page

MJCH Facebook Group

MJCH on Twitter

I am proud to be the representative of this initiative in Egypt.


*Copied from MJCH Website

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Is It Really Breaking News?

Been looking forward to the new posthumous album to be released by SONY on December 14th. Like many, I'm searching for anything Michael-related. Still pretty much in denial and holding on to whatever is there, refusing to let go. This is too much harder than I thought.

The amazing MJ fan community is working so hard on different fronts. There is the ongoing "Involuntary Manslaughter" case, if you can remember (Yeah, preliminary hearing is supposed to take place in January!).. There is all the tabloid trash, unashamed to tarnish a man who has passed away. There is a great artistic and humanitarian legacy to protect and revive. There is the determination to let everybody know the real Michael Jackson, making facts available for those who were denied access to them by the greedy media. And there is of course the SONY issue.

Being one of the middle generation of fans, it just hit me that the younger generations have not witnessed many of the events that are being mentioned by the older generations in their postings. You can see the confusion and the division among them, and it is so difficult to address each inquiry individually. Thus, I thought.. "Why not compile what I have concerning each file and put it all here for those who'd happen to pass by?"

I'm starting with the Sony file, feeling my heart aching already. Goodness!.. Here we go..

Let's start from the very beginning.. Back when Sony bought Epic Records, which used to be a CBS company. Sony bought CBS Records in 1987 and the company was renamed Sony Music in 1991, around the release time of Dangerous. Epic's booming success of course was Michael's Thriller album, the biggest selling album of all time. Michael then released Bad in 1987 under CBS. Two years earlier, he had won a great business deal when he bought the ATV music catalog, which included copyrights for The Beatles and many other artists. (We'll get back to this point later).

Now, by the time the label's name changed to Sony, it was time to release Dangerous. (The label changed in February 1991, Michael renewed his contract with Sony in March, and the album was released in November of the same year). Michael signed a 15 year, 6 album deal for $65 million, which was a crazy figure at the time. But what did Sony gain in return? Billions!

Michael was a great businessman as well as being a great artist. All the nonsense being said about his debts and him blowing off money are ignorant false statements. He saw ahead and that's why he secured himself by buying shares in other companies, making sure not to commit the mistakes of other artists, who did not own their copyrights. Hence, he was careful enough to own the copyrights for all his works under his own label., his music catalog which he named MiJac (short for Michael Jackson, announcing that it is 100% owned by him). All of those assets he put into an estate, which actually consists of many companies, but we simply refer to it as the Michael Jackson estate.

In 1995, Michael agreed to sell half of his ATV catalog to Sony, and form a merger, whereby they split the profits of the whole Sony/ATV catalog (as it has been named since then); which basically means that every morning Michael would get half of what Sony gets for copyrights. There are lots of legal details involved. But what concerns us here, is that Michael was always thinking about protecting his artistic legacy, and that is very unusual among artists who usually focus on technical matters, leaving the financial and legal aspects to their production companies.

Michael was Sony's biggest name. And it annoyed them so much to see him grow so independent, which means that their investments were at risk. Thus, a few years before the end of Michael's contract with Sony, there started a plan to tie him down and make him bound to Sony.. OR ELSE, break him and bring down his financial worth in the market.

The scheming started secretly of course, but it wasn't long before it developed into an open war. Michael was determined to become a free agent after leaving Sony, totally refusing to renew his contract with them or sign to any other company.

Sony Music's manager at the time, Tommy Mottola, came up with a plan to.. let's say, tame Michael. The biggest fish in Michael's pond was the ATV catalog, which generated millions to his estate every year. When Michael bought it back in 1984 for $47.5 million, everybody called him crazy. At the time the conflict started, Michael's share was worth more than $1.2 billion, and now some people estimate it to be worth over $2.5 billion.

It was usual for Michael to take loans from his production company while working on a new album and then pay them back off the revenues (Michael also owned a share in the revenues and his was the highest among artists, 16%). Before the release of Invincible, Michael had borrowed almost $300 million from Sony on loan ($290 million to be exact). When the album was finally released on Halloween 2001, Sony declined to promote it. This same year, Michael has been denying rumors that he was planning to sell the Beatles' song catalog! All of a sudden he found rumors spreading out that he intends to sell them in order to cover legal bill expenses, which was not true. He thus announced back then: "I want to clarify a silly rumour - The Beatles catalog is not for sale, has not been for sale and will never be for sale."

Since then Sony's aim was to make sure that Michael will be unable to pay the loan. They disagreed to finance any projects related to Invincible as well as Michael's charity event following 9/11 the all-star track "What More Can I Give?" which he had to produce on his own, but could not release or distribute because of his contract with Sony. They gave him a clear warning that in case he released it privately, they will go to court. They cut out the budgets for the Invincible videos, refusing to film "Unbreakable" as Michael's proposed head track, and for which he had planned a huge video project, more ambitious than that of "Scream". It became so ridiculous as they refused time after time to promote the album or support it in any way, until Michael was too disgusted that he did not appear in the video of the second single from the album, "Cry," which did not have a proper music video.

Michael and fans geared up for war against Sony in 2002, when Michael spoke up openly against Sony and exposed all of their schemes. You can view videos of those speeches and the New York fan protest against Sony here:

*Please download these videos because Sony is quickly removing them from YouTube. I used to have the link to a better video for the NY demo, but it is no longer there.

Out of the blues (not really), there came the 2nd molestation case! I don't wanna get into many details here. You can read Aphrodite Jones' book, Conspiracy, for more on this. And all the fans knew what and who was behind it. Thank God, the truth found its way in court, but Michael never recovered from this blow. It breaks my heart to remember this, so sorry I won't go deep into this issue and all related info. Or I'll just give you one example to show how far this conspiracy had gone. For it happened by mere chance that while investigating those who work around Michael, the lawyers on the case found out that Michael's estate manager, John Branca, shared a secret bank account with Tommy Mottola oversees (in the Caribbean) and that Sony was transferring money into that account!

Some may think that Sony, being a big name in the entertainment industry, won't be as foolish as to practice fraud.. Well, let me tell you something about Sony's history in this respect.. Or better, go see the evidence for yourself:

Sony's Phony Critic (Not a Joke)

Sony Spying on Consumers

Moving on to the fresh topic at hand.. the new single released from the posthumous album, Michael. (Urgh!!) First of all, let me tell you that I think the album cover is a mess! Who is this on the main image? These are not Michael's eyes! And what a miserable gloved hand he has! What is this for God's sake? Is this really the best Sony could come up with after this long period they spent on preparing for this album?! Or were they too occupied with editing the tracks they got through the Cascios?

This being said, I don't believe Sony's new trick is "Breaking News" at all. As mentioned previously, you can see it's in line with their usual ways.

Happened to come across this article in the Huffington Post this morning:
Its author concludes:

Sony Music conducted its own investigation by hiring a second well-respected forensic musicologist who also compared the raw vocals from the Cascio tracks against known vocals of Jackson's and found that it was Jackson's voice on both sets of the compared vocals.
The Cascio tracks were also played for two of the most significant people in the music industry who played crucial roles in Jackson's career. Both of these individuals believe that the vocals are those of Michael Jackson.

It was also specifically verified that the vocals did not belong to well-known Jackson impersonator, Jason Malachi.

The results of this exhaustive investigation confirmed Sony's belief that the songs submitted by the Estate all contained authentic Michael Jackson vocals. The decision was therefore made to include three of the Cascio tracks on Michael. Other tracks will likely be included on future albums of unreleased material.

While these are not perfectly realized tracks--as no posthumous material can be--there is certainly much to appreciate. The Cascio tracks represent, after all, some of the last work Jackson ever wrote and recorded. It wasn't ready to be released, but then, Jackson wasn't ready to die.

OK.. now this (if Sony truly did those investigations) may declare the Cascios are not guilty, but I fail to see how they might prove that Sony's released track is authentic! The experts listened to the records handed over by the Cascios. We don't know whether or not they had a chance to listen to Sony's edited tracks! Nothing mentioned above can verify that.

Besides, the final part up there explaining that those tracks were "not perfectly realized" and admitting that they have gone through some editing process.. leaves us with no answers!

Personally, I can't tell how much of this track is authentic. All I know is that I didn't feel it. What about you?


P.S. The idea for this post and most of its body was written while I was responding to a question from a fan, who is in his early twenties, about Sony.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Thank You, Charles Thomson

It's been over a month since my last post. I gotta apologize for this. It's a difficult time. June is back and it brings all painful memories. Was devastated last night while following the news from court. Hard to believe it's been a year already and we don't seem to be getting any closer to justice for Michael Jackson.

June 13 marked the 5th anniversary of MJ's vindication in court, when he was pronounced not guilty on all counts back in 2005. Memories of this particular day recalled others related to the horrible media coverage ever since the news about the allegations broke out.

Well, I gotta confess I'm angry. Actually, OUTRAGED will be a more appropriate word. It is very hard to avoid this frustration attack on your system, which may easily leave you totally disheartened when you've been witnessing all the injustice over and over again. Yet, giving up was never in my nature.. and I got MJ to thank for that too. This man was an incredible fighter! His example just leaves you speechless! He still amazes me every time I face something that would make me feel like the world is coming to an end or something. I would remember him and instantly say: "What a sassy spoiled girl you are Nagla!"

At times like these we must always look for hope, not allow yourself to sink into the whirlpools of negative thoughts.

As soon as I reached out for hope, there he was; the British award-winning journalist who has earned the love and appreciation of the Michael Jackson fan community, Charles Thomson.

Mr. Thomson is a rare example of what journalism ought to be like but unfortunately failed so miserably to become. He made it his mission to expose the bias and fabrication in today's media world, and with his special interest in black music, and particularly Michael Jackson, Charles Thomson did a thorough research, an objective and honest one, with the aim of standing on the truth amid all the controversy that surrounds this pop icon. Naturally, he found himself in a position where he was regarded as a Michael Jackson defender, or even propagandist! Well, that's what we, Michael Jackson fans have been trying to explain for decades now! We support Michael Jackson not out of a blind obsession, but because we happened to care about him we cared to know the truth and collect factual data, that's how we found out he has been truly innocent all the way. If anyone, even those who think they hate Michael Jackson, would allow themselves a chance to investigate the evidence that were deliberately hidden by the media, they would find themselves defending him. It's not about taking sides. If you are a person who values truth, you'll spontaneously find it in your heart to speak out against this huge injustice. But many people are still in denial. They are not ready to admit that they have been fooled by some puppeteers who created this whole Wacko Jacko fable with its "pedophile" horror sequel.

I've been following Charles Thomson's blog since November 2009, when his famous article Chandler Suicide Highlighs Media Bias Against Michael Jackson was being shared by the MJ fan community all over social networks. Seriously, my first impression was: What?? Is this true? Did I understand this right? Is he really critcizing the media bias against MJ or am I just imaging this? I was very skeptical and did not want my enthusiasm to make me see something that I wanted to see but was not actually there. Then I was delighted to see it did not stop there. Thomson wrote a series of excellent articles that cleared up many of the lies and exposed the crimes committed by mainstream and tabloid media against Michael Jackson. He soon became considered a Michael Jackson expert. And I believe he earned it. Unlike most journalists (and even academics and so-called researchers as previously shown) we see today, Charles Thomson puts a lot of thought and effort into what he's doing. His most recent article, "One of the Most Shameful Episodes in Journalistic History," published in the Huffington Post on June 13, bears proof to how seriously he takes the profession of journalism. This is one research that should be taught at media studies departments worldwide.

Can't forget how elated I was to find he wrote about the the Press Complaints Commission's shameful handling of the case against the Guardian over a hideous article they published back in October 2009. He was the only journalist who cared to expose the absurdity of the PCC's rule in favor of the Guardian. I happened to be one of ten who complained against the Guardian regarding this article, and I was extremely frustrated when I received their decision after trying so hard to convince them to merely put it through! Yes, somehow this had been a challenge! Will share the full story with you later.

Another thing I gotta praise Mr. Thomson for is his attempt to bring the readers back to reading this endangered species of articles: the long, whole, fully covered piece. This is something which is disappearing in our junk food style newspapers, and is particularly lacking in online journalism. The mainstream style of providng empty, easy to swallow, cut out, small pills to the readers is completely taking over. This is very sad! I so much like the term Michael Jackson coined to describe postmodernist media, calling them "medialoids" and I find this to be very true, not only concerning their content, but in following the 'journalistic' style of tabloids. Serious research articles cannot be presented in the form developed by gossip tabloids.. a flashy title and a few lines underneath! This is such a pity. What I like most about Charles Thomson's articles is that they are fully developed, so that a person who has little or no background on the subject can really learn something after reading them. He takes his readers seriously, and that's why I predict a brilliant future for him, whether he continues to write about Michael Jackson or not. Should also give him credit for giving me the spark I needed to start this blog, for I was indeed partly inspired by him, and I am sure I am not the only one.


*You may also like to read Lorette Luzajic's interview with Charles Thomson: Part 1 and Part 2.

Lorette Luzajic's blog, Extreme Michael Jackson, is one of my favorites. She has her personal unqiue view of Michael and she expresses it beautifully.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Michael Jackson in Dr. Khalil Fadel's "Study"

I'm gonna be exactly what you wanna see
It's you whose haunting me
Your warning me to be the stranger in your life
Am I amusing you or just confusing you
Am I the beast you visualised
And if you wanna see eccentrialities
I'll be grotesque before your eyes
~ Michael Jackson

Today is the day to answer to Dr. Khalil Fadel's psycho-analytical masterpiece, which I had referred to in a previous post, "Michael Jackson on Freud's Chaise-Longue: The Genius of a Pathetically Cracked Psyche." Before signing his name on this piece, Dr. Fadel was careful to add "A Study" under its title.

The reasons why I am having problems with this particular article that I decided to discuss it thoroughly were:
1. Dr. Khalil Fadel happens to be one of the most famous psychiatrists in Egypt.
2. Again, I remind everybody that this article was published in a prestigious literary magazine issued in Cairo by Akhbar Al-Youm, which is a major national publishing house and news network.
3. Dr. Fadel insisted on giving his readers the impression that what he wrote should be taken seriously by naming it a study.. which is supposed to be trustworthy and based on facts. Personally, I consider this to fall directly under academic integrity.

Now, what Dr. Fadel, the magazine and its editors seemed to pay no attention to was the fact that the subject of the study being Michael Jackson does not mean in any way that they shouldn't abide by the code of ethics. If you choose to write about anyone it means you must have some substantial data at hand. If you don't, take your time to collect it and verify it. If you fail to do either, the answer is simple.. Don't write about this person! Stick to a subject you're knowledgeable on.

I'm sorry I should be saying that, but it seems that those ABCs got forgotten somehow amid the race to join this mainstream circus.

Pardon me to add one more thing. While trying to link the original article to Dr. Fadel's website, I was shocked to find this disgusting piece 2 shown on the "News and Media" page. This is the kind of stuff he's recommending to his online visitors! Well, I'm still in utter disbelief. I mean, regardless of the poor content and false info presented, the language itself (and by that I mean the wording) used by this Lebanese writer makes his article unfit for publishing anywhere. I'm saying anywhere.. I didn't even mention "decent". Why on earth would a respectable doctor feature a bunch of insults on his website? Does the doc have anything personal against Michael Jackson? Well, I don't think so. Yet even if that was true, we're still left with nothing to justify this oddity. Is this the place he sees fit to declare some personal vendetta?

Anyway let's focus on Dr. Fadel's "study". I'm sorry I'm not providing an English translation of the article, for in doing so I'll be actually doing it a huge favor. I wanted to give those who can't read Arabic an idea of what it is about, but I honestly don't know how to summarize it or extract its main points. If I attempt to do so I won't make any sense. You see, I've read it many times and I just can't figure out what it is all about! I'm serious. Anybody who can help with this is most welcomed to do so.

The thing is too messy. It is like a collate of big words, terminology, complicated imagery, different fragmented ideas, and they are all contradicting each other. The long run-on sentences contain many twists that you can never form a single statement! It is a work of genius, I gotta admit. Such a work is nowadays really IN! It is at the top of the craft of postmodernist research. You just go round and round in aimless circles, putting all the terms that could be relevant (or even irrelevant) to the subject and just create this maze, or rather inferno, that once the reader is thrown inside s/he is just too preoccupied with finding the exit sign! The content thus remains untouchable, with zero attempts to comprehend it. That is to say, it is almost deconstruction-proof.

I gotta confess I was confused. But being determined to write about it, I said I gotta find a path through those bushes. The trick here is that anything can be reshaped. The sentences are like thick gooey bodies that don't have a definite form and together they make a giant lucid knot. That's the stuff I've been trying to learn as a professional, but wasn't motivated enough.

For example, in the introduction, Dr. Fadel poses the question: "Did he [Michael Jackson] ever see a doctor or a psychoanalyst; or did he fear the exposure of his mystery, his secret and the secrets of his success and his appeal to some perhaps?" Well, he doesn't keep his readers wondering for long. It is only a matter of seconds before they find out that this has only been a rhetorical question, for the doctor says later, "But if he had undergone some psychological treatment, would this have helped him? No. Simply because he had created a narcissistic environment with a thousand mirrors, reflecting a thousand images, some of which dive deep into psychologically defensive tactics and absolute resistance, preventing him completely from revealing his inner personal world to anyone in any psychological process."3

I wonder if Dr. Fadel treats his patients in the same way. (Let alone that he never actually intended to pose the question he rose at the beginning, that's why of course he didn't try to find out whether MJ did seek the help of professionals or not.) I mean, does he believe that even those who come to seek his aid are so caught up into their own mirrored shells that nothing he can do might provide the help they've come to ask for in first place? I propose that as a title for his next paper in the next conference he's going to attend: "Psychiatry is Useless". Oh wait! Or was he suggesting that psychiatry is useless with Michael Jackson, and Michael Jackson alone?

In his article, Dr. Fadel compared Michael Jackson to a "white crow" who "has painted his feathers with white paint to become a dove. Yet he neither remained a crow nor became a dove, therefore belonging to nothingness, to borders, to emptiness, with no identity, no knowledge and no affiliation."! WOW! Well, as far as I know Michael Jackson did in fact have some knowledge. He knew "there's no such thing as skin-bleaching."4 And as far as I know, it is true. Now, I was hoping the doctor would enlighten his readers about this breakthrough discovery. How can a crow paint his feathers, doc? Is it scientifically possible? Do you have anything to prove that Michael Jackson had this secret invention? Or did you mean he had some magical powers? To me, this coming from a doctor is exactly like finding a dentist who believes in tooth fairies!

And as usual, people just buy anything the respectable doctor throws into their laps. Here's a letter from a news editor in OTV channel, praising Dr. Fadel's exceptional analytical skills and eloquence. She was particularly fascinated with the above mentioned metaphorical image that she quoted this paragraph in her letter as proof to the doctor's precision in describing certain characters, that according to her "Michael Jackson is Michael Jackson"! I wonder if Ms. Nancy has ever met Michael Jackson in person to be able to make such an assertive statement. But who needs to get to know Michael Jackson when the doctor is in town, right? His study has just verified the existence of the Michael Jackson she's been reading about in the tabloids for many years, and that's good enough. Yeah, after all this is the only Michael Jackson she knows. And thanks to Dr. Fadel for confirming it all, placing that final seal of authority on it. Just like when you know you're watching American Idol the moment you hear Ryan Seacrest's announcement: "THIS is American Idol!" Nancy Ibrahim got hers too: "THIS is Michael Jackson!"

But wait. It is getting more and more absurd. The previous "white crow" thing is but a single poetic element out of a full bouquet in Dr. Fadel's surreal image of the mysterious MJ. He has actually called Michael Jackson a self-destructive mutant "who turned it [his self] into an instrument of a sexual fetish," You can find the term "fetish" written in English in the article. There is no possible misunderstanding here, although I wish there could be. Fetish? I believe Freud himself couldn't have come up with such a verdict, even if Michael Jackson lay on his couch for real. How could you see this fetish, Dr. Fadel? How could you suggest (not assert) its existence without ever seeing the man?

Then he goes on to say "I wonder what he did in his parties with those 12 year-old boys while they slept at his house. Was it pedophilia or a powerful nostalgia for a white childhood?" Seems the doctor doesn't know that both boys involved in the allegations were not white! And he, like everybody else, insists on disregarding the fact that Michael Jackson was acquitted on all counts back in 2005. But who cares? Let his imagination drift off as far as he wants.. Fetish, Pedophilia, Borderline disorder, white crows, mutants, Batmans,.. whatever. This is a short story, right? Oh no, I forgot. It is a study!

A STUDY? You must be kidding me! I really thought it was some piece of poor fiction, especially when he quoted MJ saying, "'Why don't I share your bed, boy? The best thing in the world is sharing your bed with someone.'" Excuse me? Wherever did MJ say that? Dr. Fadel is probably referring to Martin Bashir's interview*, and it is hard to tell whether he actually watched it or only heard about it. He didn't even care to check when he decided to use this "quote" in his so-called "study". That is so strange, and utterly incomprehensible! It is just a click away for God's sake! Go to YouTube. It's there. MJ was talking to Bashir, not to the kid. Couldn't he notice that? This is not making any sense.

Now, people who read something like this know nothing about Bashir or his slanderous documentary to go and check it out. And the doctor did not even bother to mention where he quoted this from! And of course the editor can't care any less. And Michael Jackson is in his grave, so who will possibly care to dig into this? Well, the nosy person that I am does care. I'm sorry, doc. I'm sorry, Akhbar Al-Adab. I'm such an irritating person, I know. But someone has got to say this is wrong! The Egyptian readers should not be treated like a herd of sheep. We deserve a more civilized treatment. We deserve to be taken seriously. Please be up to your responsibilities towards the public. And when you present something to us as a study, it has to be as such. It should abide by the minimal requirements of research ethics and integrity!

Dr. Fadel can sum up whole lives in a single magazine page and people would believe everything he says. This kind of authority deserves to be handled with care and a throbing conscience. Had Dr. Fadel read anything of substance about Michael Jackson he wouldn't have written this article which he displays so proudly on his website! Had he waited to check the autopsy report which confirmed that Michael Jackson was not a "white painted crow", but a HUMAN being who suffered from a skin disorder (not Borderline Personality Disorder) called Vitiligo, maybe he could have shown some sympathy, like that which I now feel towards his patients. Had he not rushed into having his name in print beside the photo of Michael Jackson, he might have used this opportunity to deliver something of value to help thousands understand who the biggest pop icon of our times really was. Again, I only have my extremely wishful thinking to blame for imagining this. When will I realize that mainstream culture will not allow such a thing? Just when will I grow up and become street-smart like all the professionals out there? How would Dr. Khalil Fadel analyze my case? I'm only curious!

*Michael Jackson's actual words in responding to those who think it is not appropriate for him to share his bedroom with children were: "I feel sorry for them, because that's judging someone who really wants to help people. Why can't you share your bed? The most loving thing to do is share your bed with someone." - Living with Michael Jackson: A Tonight Special (2003)

1. Michael Jackson. "Is it Scary
" Blood on the Dance Floor: History in the Mix. Epic, 1997.

2. Harqoth, Omar. "The King of Pop is Dead
" Middle East Transparent ( 9 July, 2009.

3. Fadel, Khalil. "Michael Jackson on Freud's Chaise-longue
" Akhbar Al-Adab. 5 July, 2009: 834. p.31

4. Michael Jackson talks to.. Oprah Live

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Michael Jackson Conspiracy - What You Didn't Hear

Thank God for Aphrodite Jones.. a woman who listened to the voice of her conscience and decided to rebel against the mainstream role she was meant to play as a media reporter. Like all members of the media who went on a frenzy to cover the Michael Jackson 2005 trial, she went there under the influence that Michael Jackson is guilty and that the deeper she could drag him into the mud, the greater the value of her coverage will be. But what she saw inside that courtroom changed her outlook 180 degrees. She came face to face with the real man and she saw the network of vampires who were after his blood. Listen to her talk about her experience here:

And watch her Michael Jackson TV special tomorrow at 10 pm on Investigation Discovery Channel. (Re-run 1:00 am Friday, April 30)

Aphrodite Jones also told the full story of the 2005 trial in her book MICHAEL JACKSON CONSPIRACY which is available on Amazon.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Michael Jackson VS. Terry Eagleton

How crazy is that? I'm about to offer a critique of Prof. Terry Eagleton. Yes, THE Terry Eagleton. Hard to imagine? Indeed. I myself would have never imagined I'd be doing that one day. But that's what happens when you develop a mind of your own.

I bet the reason you probably would laugh at the mere idea is that you see me -- basically a nobody -- daring to weigh my thoughts against those of a well-known thinker. Something in your mind tells you this isn't the way things should be. Some may consider it like the end of the world. This Michael Jackson fan who would go that far to defend him! In fact, I have been advised by a friend who knew about my intention to embark on this project to skip the "Michael Jackson fan" completely. He said that would interfere with my aim, because nobody will allow themselves to see anything beyond that. And I agree with him. Yeah, I am skeptical of those people who are reading this. They will probably tend to label me as an obsessed fan. They won't care about the degree I hold, or the serious research I've invested so much time into, or the important message I wish to deliver.. But still I won't cheat! I won't go back behind this cloak I used to wear and the thick glasses that were making me dizzy jeopardizing my eyesight and sound judgment. See, this is precisely what I'm rebelling against right now. For me, the end doesn't justify the means. And if I'm gonna talk about honesty, I'll do it honestly. I''m taking my chances!

Back to you.. if you examine the idea carefully and then become able to look at it critically, then I win! See, the thing is.. why do you consider it "daring"?.. Must I surrender to the rules of the mainstream? Must I feel intimidated and declare my powerlessness in my current position? OK.. let's say I'm a nobody.. and he's Somebody. I believe it is not a matter of names or persons. I believe it all comes down to ideas. In that particular case it is mine against HIS, but the fact remains that this is a game between ideas! Who said them seems totally irrelevant to me. I'm still conscious that I'm saying that in my current (and newly found) state of mind. I repeat.. I didn't use to think this way. There was always the common error of who said what.. the "authoritative" sources again! However, when you think of it, we should allow the ideas to converse freely, regardless of the authority (or lack of authority) of the people who brought them forward.

By authority I don't mean credibility. In this context I mean how big - or small, or tiny - the names involved are. Hence, it is not strange at all if you have your say about something said by the President. But can your ideas have as powerful a forum as his? Ideally, they should. Yet in the real world.. well, you know.

Before I proceed any further, please, let me make it clear that I have nothing but total respect and sincere admiration for Prof. Eagleton. He can never be underestimated as a thinker and critic by any means. I studied his books as a student, and I appreciate his works a great deal. This is a man who gained his doctoral degree at the age of 21 for God's sake!

Mind you, my topic is not Nagla vs. Terry Eagleton. I'm putting forth a much tougher question. It is someone whose fame far exceeds that of Prof. Eagleton, yet whose image has suffered so drastically in a way which led intellectual circles to reject him. You read an article by Terry Eagleton and it earns your respect, whether you agree or disagree with it. But you read a speech by Michael Jackson just for fun, never being encouraged to take it seriously (and that is the best case scenario)! When Terry Eagleton uses false information about Michael Jackson as "givens" in his intellectual arguments, nobody can interrupt him to refute it! In fact, other pens would just copy after Prof. Eagleton, considering his givens to be accurate.. or even more accurate than the truth itself. That is the danger of it. And that is precisely my subject.

You see, when our intelligentsia commits those kind of mistakes.. that is copying after one another, allowing the mainstream to influence their impressions, and moreover, to feel confident enough to build whole arguments upon baseless claims.. Then, I'm sorry to say it, but we're not in good hands! For those are the minds leading their societies. If those people do not take research to heart, and are willing to adopt ideas because they've heard them too often, just like anyone else.. then we're killing the whole idea of research!

Here are some examples to help you realize the amount of this tragedy.

In several articles and talks, Prof. Eagleton has depended on ridiculing Michael Jackson to add some humor to his serious arguments on different topics.. But most of all, he does in fact regard Michael Jackson as an icon of the post-modernist culture that he is bitterly critical of. And I'm going to talk about that particular point in detail later. What concerns me here, however, is the way he keeps using the name Michael Jackson as the equivalent of "ugly," "stupid," "corrupt," "artificial," and other negative adjectives that he wishes to inflict upon postmodernist culture. It never occurred to him that Michael Jackson is a human being, not a fictional prototype whose name can be employed in such a way. Objectifying Mr. Jackson and using him as a vehicle in delivering a leftist critique is just another form of exploitation. Furthermore, it never occurred to him that talking about someone is such a way, famous or not, is wrong and unethical! This is utterly ridiculous coming from a person who has been investing so much into addressing the question of ethics! He even used this kind of "humor" in his attack on those who deny the existence of God:

... we cannot thus demonstrate God's existence in the reasonably straightforward way we can demonstrate the existence of necrophilia or Michael Jackson, we have to put up instead with something less than certainty, known as faith. 1

I won't comment on the associations he chose to make, but I used to expect much better than that from prestigious thinkers . Can't hide my disappointment.

In an article entitled "God, the Universe, Art, and Communism," Prof. Eagleton says: "We cannot on this viewpoint provide a noncircular answer to the toddler who asks why water is wet, or why Michael Jackson is stupid."2 Such a brilliant example indeed! When it comes to the amount of certainty by which this statement was made, I'm left speechless. We're talking serious research here. This is no joke.

Again, talking about "Tragedy and Terror," Terry Eagleton amuses his audience by comparing the current world order to Michael Jackson's nose:
Socialism is not about reaching for the stars, but reminding us of our frailty and mortality, and so of our need for one another. In contrast, absolute freedom regards the world as just so much pliable stuff to be manipulated in whatever way takes its fancy. This is why postmodernism, or some aspects of it, is one of its latest inheritors. For all its consumerist greed, this uncompromising freedom is a virulently anti-materialist force; for matter is what resists you, and absolute freedom is as impatient with such resistance as the US is with the resistance in Iraq. The world becomes just raw material to cuff into shape. Michael Jackson’s nose is its icon. It is only when such raw materials begin to include whole people and nations that it becomes a form of deadly terror. 3

One of the fortunate places where this talk was delivered was Cairo, my hometown. And many Egyptian intellectuals, including journalists and leftist writers who are totally enchanted by Prof. Eagleton and celebrated his visit to Egypt, also celebrated his witty talk and his exceptional sense of humor. This particular line made it in all press coverages of his lecture at the American University in Cairo. You can see a couple of examples here and here.

Of course, Prof. Eagleton was kind enough to dedicate a whole article to discuss Michael Jackson's 2005 trial, and with the kind of authority he has, he could of course come up with all sorts of "givens" to kick the ass of this postmodernist icon.. from the "fact" that the pop star has changed the color of his skin.. to implying that truth will have no chance in the courtroom, and if he is acquitted, it is merely because he could afford to get a good lawyer!

I consider this particular article to be extremely disturbing; One which could have shaken Terry Eagleton's status as the world's most prominent literary critic.. that is of course in case someone was ready to read it objectively, without being drugged by its intellectual brand T. E. Just wishful thinking in a yes-world.. a mainstreamish-universe!

To stand on the kind of impact which Prof. Eagleton has on intellectuals across the world, I'll just give one tiny example from an Egyptian literary magazine called Akhbar Al-Adab (Literary News). In its issue dated July 5, 2009, in which there was a section of seven pages about Michael Jackson, you can clearly see how influenced all the writers were by Prof. Eagleton's view of the late icon! I need to point out here that the seven-page special was not intended to be a tribute. Such a thing would not be seen in Egypt at all. You should have seen how TV anchors announced the news of his death on TV to believe it. They were actually apologetic! Almost saying, "you know, it is everywhere on the news, so we gotta say it too." And on Egypt's most popular daily show El-Beit Beitak, two anchors along with a plastic surgeon, psychiatric and an amateur singer sat there for like an hour or so, hailing insults at Michael Jackson. Such was the kind of tribute you find on Egyptian TV! The name Michael Jackson cannot be mentioned without being followed by something negative. This is mainstream law here.

Back to Akhbar Al-Adab, which is generally regarded as a prestigious magazine.. All the articles were negative of course. Up till here, nothing is new. But reading along them, I was taken aback in horror! Those writers who presented themselves as intellectuals, doctors, and professors were just copying! None of them did any research whatsoever before writing those articles! Apparently they were rushed into this.. and it seems none of them had any substantial background knowledge about Michael Jackson's works or achievements, so they chose to go for the usual interesting stuff that is fit for tabloid and gossip, not a literary magazine by all means!

The best article by far was one written by Ahmed Naje, for at least he had something to say. Yet, from the very title he chose for his article I knew it was all about Terry Eagleton's critique.. for that's what a person working in a literary magazine will read, right? What else (talking about mainstream)? "A Farewell to the Crowned King of Postmodernism" it was called, and in it Naje says:

The [Michael Jackson] trial revealed a new shift in Jackson, one which caught the attention of the British thinker, Terry Eagleton, who wrote an important article after the not guilty verdict he received entitled "Lessons Learned from the Michael Jackson Trial," [his mistake] in which he sharply criticized the cinematic way in which the trial took place. And since Jackson is considered to be an icon of postmodernism, Eagleton compared his plastic surgeries and his wish to live forever to world manipulation and the desire of the George Bush administration to reshape the world, imposing a solo version of democracy. But, regardless of the viability of Eagleton's comparison, it does give us a clear insight into the special nature which Michael Jackson had attained during the final years of his life [!] as he became the most important icon of Western civilization, the thing which caused such a prestigious critic and academic like Eagleton use him as an example to criticize this culture. 4 (my translation)
OK. So there you have it. According to this writer, Michael Jackson's only possible importance comes from the fact that Prof. Terry Eagleton has made use of him in his ingenious criticism of postmodernism! That's what he had to say about Michael Jackson right after his death. How fortunate MJ must be, huh?

Another article which was so appalling, and which appeared on that same issue, was written by the well-known psychiatrist, Dr. Khalil Fadel. And I shall talk about this one in detail in a separate post, because it is such an absurd thing that he subtitled it "A Study" while it was all hearsay from the very beginning till end! All based on tabloid rumors! No research was done. No facts introduced. No insight. Nothing. I used to think that a study involves careful collection of proven data, then a thorough examination of it in order to reach sound (or semi-sound) conclusions! But nowadays more and more "studies" are all about coming up with whatever you can get to support a preconception or an insinuation! This is precisely why I lost faith in academic research altogether! This is why the whole process has become so meaningless in my eyes, losing its very essence which is based on credibility and a genuine interest in truth.

It is easy to label me as crazy. I might be crazy. I don't have any concrete evidence to prove otherwise. But I reached a point when I thought "if I can't go to a university and tell them I am interested in studying Michael Jackson, then the whole educational system has nothing to offer! Then academic research is just another mainstream facade that I don't wanna waste my life on. It doesn't speak for me or for the marginalized majority. Why am I welcomed to conduct a research on Shakespeare, or Milton, or Coleridge, or Naguib Mahfouz, but not on Michael Jackson? Why would it be prestigious to quote Terry Eagleton, but childish to quote Michael Jackson?

When you try to dig deep into it, there is nothing there but absolute mainstream bias! Hence, I dare to raise some questions: If I can prove that Michael Jackson is not the epitome of postmodernist decay, will anybody care? If I am able to bring forth a very powerful argument to prove that the best minds in the world allowed themselves to be manipulated by the mainstream while advocating the opposite, who will be there to listen?


1. Eagleton, Terry. Reason, Faith, and Revolution: Reflections on the God Debate. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2009, p.111

2. The lecture was published in Red Pepper as an article entitled "The Roots of Terror"
Eagleton, Terry. "The Roots of Terror" Red Pepper. 1 September 2005

3. Eagleton Terry. "God, the Universe, Art, and Communism" New Literary History, Vol. 32, No. 1, Views and Interviews (Winter, 2001), pp. 23-32

4. Naje, Ahmed. "A Farewell to the Crowned King of Postmodernism" Akhbar Al-Adab. 5 July 2009: 834. pp. 30-31