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FUSIONED - DIRECTED - WRITTEN AND CORRESPONDED BY: MENASSA 2002
DON'T KNOW HOW TO SPEAK BUT WE DO IT IN SEVERAL LANGUAGES
GRIS, IS A PRODUCT
INDIO GRIS Nº 97
WITH THE POET
Salamanca: I didn't get any note from El País newspaper apologising, they
haven't taken into account the interview, they have said nothing. I think they
are pretending to be deaf.
Oscar Menassa: What I think is that the people from El País have a lot of
work because they don't know whom they're going to vote for in the next
elections. Aznar, the one they put in power, they don't like him any more and
they have no one to replace him. It seems that there is a problem because
Polanco wants to present his candidature, he said: "And am I not running
well the destinies of Prisa? What difference is there between Prisa and Spain?.
I think Cebrián was there and said to him: "none" (you see how Cebrían
is, he always goes forward), in the end Felipe Gonzalez isn't so bad" and
Polanco said to him "prove it to me". And they wrote a book together
to prove to Polanco that Felipe Gonzalez was worth for something, but if you
read the bullshit they wrote and published, you will realise that poor Polanco
won't leave El País in the hands of these two men. It seems that he's going to
present his candidature for the elections.
The name of the book is Future is no
longer what it used to be.
Well, you're very imaginative, too and you attribute things to me which I
haven't even dared to think. You made such a mess the other day, you have a mess
in your head…
Why do you say I have a mess in my head?
As if you would like the world to be something else.
Of course , man, we still have some amount of idealism.
And where did you learn that word?
I don't know, but I remember that Menassa says that the last idealists fell with
the Berlin Wall, that after that there are no more ideals.
Does Menassa say that? I don't think Menassa says that. Menassa must say that
the ideals, which were useful for young people from some time ago, to be able to
choose between an ideal and drugs, those ideals no longer exist, it's necessary
to generate new ideals. But people try hard to flee from things that take a lot
of effort to achieve.
We are in the Holy Week, the other day you were talking about the Christian
Flood, what do you think of the Christian passion?
You're asking in a wrong way, because Christian passion has moved mountains.
What am I going to think about Christian passion? There have never been such
passionate people as Christians. They let themselves be killed for their ideals,
they conquered, robbed, executed, what are you asking me? You ask me about this
celebration they are having.
Yes, for example.
Well, I have very economic thoughts about that. I would prohibit the bullfights,
do you know why?
Because I think that a whorehouse is more profitable than
bullfights. I don't know why the government prefers bullfights to a
whorehouse. Because people want the bulls. But people also want canned shit,
they also want heroin, they want fire arms…they won't give people all that
just because they want it. So then we have bullfights because people want it, we
leave the bulls, it is a shame. Afterwards
I have to bear the Spanish ecologists. This interview won't be very good.
Do you know why?
Because you started quarrelling and you can't start the day quarrelling.
Quarrelling? Why quarrelling?
Yes, you started making fun of the people from El País, as if the people from
El País didn't have any problem more than putting up with you when you get up
on a Sunday and make fun of them. As if they didn't have any problems, when they
don't know what to do.
is an invention from El País newspaper. When we trusted in El País newspaper,
because he had been there, and it started to criticise Felipe Gonzalez, who
would dare to vote Felipe Gonzalez? If also people regarded El País newspaper
as the newspaper of democracy. Now, they don't know what to do with Aznar, they
can't get rid of him, who knows when they'll be able to get rid of him. The
polls show that he will win three more elections, although Aznar now committed a
mistake that we have already criticised last time.
the people from El País alone, they have enough problems, conscience problems,
ethic problems, where have they led the Spanish people? What did they make them
believe? The newspaper, El País newspaper which is the paladin of democracy in
Spain. What did they make people believe? They made people believe that Aznar
was better than Felipe Gonzalez whom they said had a girlfriend in Latin
America. Can you believe that a whole campaign can be organised against the
person in government
and in favour of a future replacement because the person in government had a
girlfriend? If it were in Alicante no one would have said anything, but as the
girlfriend was Argentinean, then they made such a fuss. I don't care for those
things but as one listens, listens, listens…
tell anything to Felipe Gonzalez's wife because I don't want to have problems.
We're talking about politics.
Yes, of course.
And Aznar as it is shown by Plus Channel, which I think also belongs to El País.
Now they want to knock him down. Now, comparing him to Bush, they show him as if
he were a little homosexual. It isn't that Aznar doesn't cheat on his wife as
Felipe Gonzalez did, but he cheats on his wife with men, and when his wife asks
him "Did you cheat on me, my darling?" he answers "I have never
cheated on you with any woman". What a genius! What a good invention! I'm
studying Aznar's sexuality because I want to change my sexuality a little, I
feel that I'm being watched over. He managed quite well with that, everybody
watches his front part while he does everything with his backside, then it is
very difficult for anyone to discover him.
think it's very cool to have a person in government who knows to hide from his
wife so well, it seems sensational to me. And it must be that they want to turn
her into a woman president, therefore he doesn't want
to give his wife a bad time.
There are many rumours about that, a lot of jokes.
He wants to make her president of his heart and she writes, she has other things
in her head, she isn't going to be all the time thinking in Aznar. What I heard
about is that Zapatero learnt a tango, a tango which is called Bigotito (Little
Moustache): "Bigotito, if your Dad would come out of his grave and would
see you wearing that fluff in Chaplin's style, I swear to you, he would pull out
that fixation hair by hair". And he even has a girlfriend with that
There is a phrase from January 22, 1978, in Psychoanalysis
of the Leader…
And you want to make me responsible for something that happened 25 years ago?
"Man, in general, thinking that madness isn't a social event, attributes it
to someone else". Believing that glory is a suave encounter with his
mother, cannot share it. El País attributes I don't know whose madness to
someone else, negating that it is a social event. Because of that question of
picking on Felipe Gonzalez.
Felipe Gonzalez isn't a saint either, many people feel treated badly by him,
that is very interesting. El Mundo newspaper thinks the same, it had it in for
They make fun of Aznar's paranoia, "Go away, Mr Gonzalez".
The truth is that the media made it very easy for Aznar, now that they are
against him, we'll see what happens with Aznar. And if he wins the elections
with the press against him, then we'll have a tyrant for a long time. I don't
know if they will dare to go so far, to leave Aznar although they don't want to.
I don't understand much, you are asking me about things which I don't understand
much. Why don't you ask me about something I understand?
I'm asking you about your writing.
Go ahead, please.
This book is very interesting, you advertised it to me as a manual of
psychoanalytical philosophy and you may even be right. It says: "If
modifying the styles of production is to change life-style, our life has
issue of modifying the styles of production attracted my attention. What was
modified? This is from 1978, how did you modify it?
It's very simple, because the guy always speaks about art, not
about potatoes. So there he is speaking about various things. He says, we
seriously consider that anyone accepting the rules of cohabitation can be a
great writer, a great painter… And that is altering the rules of artistic
production, while here in Spain there are many artists, some of them, owners of
big art companies, that
think that one is born a poet, is born a painter. You have to tell people
that in reality it is a work that some may accomplish in a convenient way while
others, more or less, and that there are raw materials. It is a theory where
University, studying, culture, transmission of culture are necessary.
I think that with work you can be a great writer, I'm forcing you to study, to
read, not to believe that things are inside your belly, to accept that you had a
cultural heritage. That in spite of your parents being poor, you
received the same cultural heritage than the wealthy people. When people
don't care for their cultural heritage it's because they want to dominate, the
states want us to believe that one is born a poet, that only the wealthy people
can reach the University, it was demonstrated that there are wealthy people who
reach the University and wealthy people who go tumbling down to nowhere, and
there are poor people who reach the University and poor people who end up in
jail, not all the wealthy people go to the University, but there is a mania from
the part of the state to make us believe…Don't you see that now they are going
to generate the mentally feeble people?
What have you said?
Now the Spanish State wants to generate mentally feeble people, as they have
many Non Governmental Organisations which look after mentally feeble people and
they don't have many, the new study law will generate many mentally feeble
people by categories. Number 1 category, number 2 category, number 3 category,
etc. Do you get it?
Thanks God that you understand me because it is very difficult, people don't
want to understand me.
What you say is very simple, everything upside-down and that's it.
What are you saying?
That your thought is revolutionary.
Revolutionary, my ass. You said everything upside-down, afterwards when you look
at it carefully, they say "you did everything upside-down".
Everything upside-down in relation to what they believe.
Who are they? Are you them?
The ruling ideology, the social mass, the state.
The mass!, now you are insulting the people.
To modify the styles of production is to do things upside-down, don't tell me.
The one who is born poor gets jail, well, if that is modified it is to do it
upside-down in relation to what they command.
Please, be a little more serious because it seems to me that today it won't be
Yes, it's Holy Week. "Death doesn't exist, she is also a construction of
our desires". In the sense that one must be able to sustain the word, one
has to have in his psyches that word, if not…
Yes, that and I'm also very Freudian, well, I have read Freud, so that is a
Freud's article from 1906, Psychotherapy
through the spirit, which is a
very nice text. There he speaks about death, in reality one dies by the same
mechanism that one gets ill, that is to say, because of a problem with desiring.
That is why I told you that great men think that at a certain age one could
decide when to die. For example, Borges, the genius, he died before, he died at
98, but he died before because he didn't want to decide when to die, because he
had said that before being 100 one dies by accident, but after being 100 one
choose to die. Just in case he died at 98 so that they couldn't say that he had
chosen to die.
Excuse me, but perhaps influenced by the conversation, I see in that figure
Aznar's face, some very close thick eyebrows, a sort of Basque cap. Perhaps I'm
It's just as with the problem of God, if you look in my heart, you find God, but
if you look for God in the books, in the books God is dead. The same happens
with this man, advertising also causes effect over me. If Spain is doing well
and he's cute in spite of being very ugly and the girls say "how handsome
Aznar is", at the end of the week you end up carrying him in your heart,
although consciously it isn't so. I tell you what you are saying to me. I don't
see what you see, I see here a man on the verge of launching himself definitely
over love and I don't think that this may happen to this guy.
I was recalling Rajoy, on his way of not answering the opposition's questions in
a supposed serious Congress session to answer to those questions. This question
of power continues to intrigue me, how is it possible that they continue
governing when they are making fun of the people?
In the questions you ask it is as if you hadn't realised that democracy (it is
being demonstrated), isn't a good way to govern the peoples. Because it is
called democracy, but afterwards when you get the absolute majority it is
because the people have turned completely mad, and the people have turned mad a
lot of times, they turned mad with Hitler, with Mussolini, with Perón, with
Franco. In general the people are mad, let's say the truth, we can't be tied up
with what people ask or say, they ask for anything.
Do you mean that people are manageable?
Manageable and any other thing that you happen to think. Because the peoples
react but, do you know when they react? They react in the limit of the limit of
When you can no longer fix it.
I don't want to put it that way.
Now I understand why Freud said that there are three impossible tasks to fulfil,
which are educating, governing and, which is the other one?
: Psychoanalysing. You can see it clearly when referring to governing because
there is no state that takes into consideration the happiness of the citizens, I
mean to teach them to be happy, it is a way of educating.
That can't be done because it's very expensive.
But, wouldn't a happy people produce more that an unsatisfied people? In the
sense of capitalistic production.
I'm going to tell you something you surely don't know. I'm answering to your
phrase "if a happy people wouldn't work more…" See how intellectuals
are, the intellectuals at that moment of revolution, in the Soviet Union, asked
for two things, which two things did they ask for? They asked for a change in
the Russian language and for free sexuality. Stalin, who remained as the Russian
dictator, was no stupid man, he said that with language absolutely not, because
language was infrastructural, therefore if he changed the language the whole
Russian people would turn mad, so the Russians obtained sexual freedom. You said
a people who were finally happy. They really accomplished it, but after a short
period they had to stop the thing and go back to the Tsars sexuality, in reality
to the pre-tsarist sexuality, due to the decrease in production.
simply answering your silly question about if happy people work more with a
silly example. That hasn't been demonstrated. In the saying of these people who
ended up giving a step backwards in spite of what they had accomplished with the
excuse of production, they said that people produced less.
You are talking about happiness, but without reaching that extreme, wouldn't a
certain degree of comfort or well-being be possible?
You attribute to me things I haven't said.
I ask you because as it is posed, the matter has no solution. If one has to be
unhappy for the capitalist system to continue to work and
production can be achieved and we can go on living…
I'm going to say only one thing to you, happiness carries with it a lot of
questions of not easy solution for the current systems.
Beyond the non-existing possibility of obtaining happiness by definition, which
problems of difficult solution does happiness pose?
Happiness? The problem is that a happy man wants more, a happy man doesn't
content himself with what he has, he wants more. For example, when he was
unhappy, man asked for some bread, when he gets some bread and he is happy he
wants bread for his beloved and when he obtains bread for his beloved he wants
education for his children and when he has education for his children he wants
university for the young, and when he obtains university for the young he wants
work for the people leaving university. So, a person who was there, quiet,
stupid, foolish, whom I could manage at my pleasure, in making him happy he
transforms himself into a competitor, a man who is going to want the best for
humanity. The one who is happy won't be contented to obtain happiness for
himself, he will want that happiness for the rest of the world. Do you
Didn't I answer you?
What does psychoanalysis offer man to obtain a minimum plot of happiness?
To man, I don't know, to you three or four weekly sessions. Good, isn't it?
You have left me without words. But I insist, this manual of psychoanalytical
philosophy must have something to do with respect to…
"I have the possibility of metamorphosis, I am human". Something could
Of course, we are looking (you Ms, don't want to understand it) at a total
crisis trying to save humanity globally, that is what happens to us. That is
what happens to today's man, to man, to the states. Today everything is
negotiable, I want to save the Palestines, for that I have to give my
authorisation to break the Iraqi's asses, I want to save the Iraqi's, then I
can't meddle with the Palestinian problem. Everything is negotiable, darling.
are no more collective ways out because no state has the possibility of
forgetting about the business they are doing and to start engaging themselves
with people, there is no state in the world which can look after people, so, how
are people going to change? People are going to change in an individual way, in
a grupal way, that's why the importance of groups, which is our didactic
not we end up believing that what we see is true, and what we see isn't
true, it is an appearance.
But if you pose another appearance to me I would make another interpretation, it
isn't that I remain with appearances, I say that there are appearances which
can't be interpreted in no other way but as the interpretation I'm making where
I'm telling you that a collective salvation is very difficult. Don't you see
that when Menassa criticises the current government, he doesn't stop saying, in
reality, that the worst of this government was made up by Felipe Gonzalez? All
the working restructuring, they are well now, we may have success in social
security although it is with an openly rightist government. That's why I don't
understand those people who go on thinking yet about things being from right or
left. To my understanding Felipe Gonzalez's government was a rightist
government, necessary, it was necessary because of the amount of problems we
had. Spain was quite behind in a lot of things, it had to be ornamented, it had
to be made European.
And you can tell me "but, making it European meant putting it against the
Here it says "To ambition, I ambition a deep change of the modern ethics,
ethics, that as we well know, propitiate impotence and a premature death".
In 1978 you ambitioned that, well, at least the writer did.
I continue to ambition that, you're right because the only thing normalcy does
is to carry the individual to a premature death. Why? Because we need his place,
because we don't have so many places in the capitalist society. Then, I'm
normal, I'm going towards a premature death because someone is already there
waiting to occupy my place.
To have my ID number, for example.
Well, I have the ID card of a dead person. Many times I think that if this man
wouldn't have died, who knows if I could have got the ID card.
"The ID card of a dead person to cover appearances…"
So that nobody might think they had given me the DNI (ID card). In that way they
were giving me the DNI, that is to say, they were giving the DNI to a Latin
American, but they weren't doing so, I was dead, and in the DNI they wrote very
clearly that I was born in Buenos Aires, for legal aspects, let's say.
That's why it is called DNI, "Donde Nació el Individuo" (where was
the individual born).
Well, it's very similar to what you say, which is the definition?
Documento Nacional de Identidad (National Document of Identity). Intricate,
the world we have to live in.
Do you want me to tell you the truth? I'm glad to live in the world I live in.
The fact that I can't modify it doesn't mean that the world can't be modified,
it means that I, with today's instruments and today's comprehension, I can't
modify the world, not that the world is not going to be modified. How won't the
world be modified if the world always modified itself? What happens is that we
have to accept we are in the hands of a crazy people at the moment, of an
omnipotent people, of a people who believe they can solve their problems of
perversity, their homosexual childhood, their perfect murders… From time to
time a child picks a machine gun and makes justice with his own hands. And who
does he kill? The little companion who made fun because he didn't solve his
tasks, the poor teacher who earns a miserable salary, even in the United States,
and who is all day educating him, so then he thinks that's wrong.
think they're going to fix the problem. They are imposing a morale, don't you
see that they say to their tourists that Spain is dangerous? Today I read in the
newspaper that the American State is alerting its tourists citizens to be
careful in Madrid because there is a lot of street violence. That's what
globalisation means: Or you behave as daddy wants or you leave the house. What
happens is that when one is young and leaves home, what does it mean? That one
goes to another house. Here you have to leave the planet because the house of
these people is the whole world.
To conclude "If we can't be men, at least let's be gods".
What are you asking me? What I mean by that?
Well, the guy has a totally Greek conception of the affair, because he always
poses the same thing. When he says that he can't be a man, he is talking about
people who can't make love, can't study, can't work, then he says: at least you
do as God does, read, study. He attributes God things that I don't know if we
should attribute to God. I, for example, think that God must be a great reader,
because if not how would he realise whom is to be punished? It wouldn't be like
the American state, which punishes everything it doesn't like, I imagine that
this question of God must be a little more serious, that even if he doesn't like
something, if it's well done, he won't punish it. What is your opinion? Or is it
that you also have a bad opinion of God?
Lately, I'm liking God quite a lot, I'll tell you, because people criticises,
they criticise but the truth…
What happens is that he has lost some prestige.
Well, there were many intellectuals that went around saying that they were going
to do things better than God once in power and when they took power they made
mess after mess. Or the other way round, the present government sheltered under
God, wants to make you do things that God would never make you do. How God would
make you think that someone who is good, isn't good, how God would make you
think that someone who is cultured, isn't so.
that sense, for example, the same thing happens to me as with the family, I was
a person who used to fight against the family, because I felt they left me no
freedom, but on second thought and at present, the minor wickedness of the
adolescent ends up being the family
world is crumbling down, beloved,
Poet, they commanded me and, afterwards
am the pen that is left from that history,
am the inert and torn to pieces dove,
beast! Enamoured beast! I'll make you so high, I'll write so deeply in
you, that no one will be able to touch you till the next century.
I admit it, my ambitions make you restless. You, always so polite with
everybody, so kind to God, you become restless in perceiving that you will
be all mine and not because I will take away from your freedom some of its
flights, but because, enamoured beast of my cadence, your love will want
that you will be all mine. Condemned to be immortal among my verses, you
won't be able to flee.
And when someone asks, what are you doing, there, standing just in the centre of my life? You'll answer: life belong to no one, or better still, there is no life without me. That's why I am the centre of everything she loves. That's why I am the centre of all freedom.
I saw them
little ants question the existence of an old rose bush, I draw among the
leaves of the magnolia tree the possible profiles of a life under the sun.
The Lebanese cedar, the Japanese privet and the Chinese roses bring to me
oriental memories, that Jewish girl in the Palermo park, with her jutting
tits. I recall having kissed those tits with a devotion of a hungry child.
dusk came and I recited my verses and she felt as if in a sort of love
delirium, that my verses were the promised land and she opened her lips
slightly and opened her legs slightly and let herself be carried away by
the odour of cultivated land and my father made us recall that he had
planted the first olive tree in the south of Spain and left us with our
mouths opened full of black olives bathed by love.
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