The City of Disney, Book VIII: Christ Comes to Haiti

Upon his entrance into Texaco, the Christ was hit by a stone -- an aggression that surprised no one. In those days, truth be said, we were all nervous: a road called Pénétrante West had joined our Quarter to the center of City. That is where the ever-so-well-to-do from the depths of their cars had discovered our piled-up hutches which they said were insalubrious -- and such a spectacle seemed to them contrary to the public order. -- Patrick Chamoiseau, Texaco (pp. 9-10) [1]

It might be stated as a general formula that the technology of reproduction detaches the reproduced object from the sphere of tradition. By replicating the work many times over, it substitutes a mass existence for a unique existence. And in permitting the reproduction to reach the recipient in his or her own situation, it actualizes that which is reproduced... . Every day the urge grows stronger to get hold of an object at close range in an image [Bild], or, better in a facsimile [Abbild], a reproduction. And the reproduction [Reproduktion], as offered by illustrated magazines and newsreels, differs unmistakable from the image. Uniqueness and permanence are as closely entwined in the latter as are transitoriness and repeatability in the former. The stripping of the veil from the object, the destruction of the aura, is the signature of a perception whose "sense for sameness in the world" has so increased that, by means of reproduction, it extracts sameness even from what is unique. -- Walter Bejamin, "The Work of Art in the Age of its Reproducibility"[2]

My Administration will put the federal government squarely on the side of America's armies of compassion. -- George W. Bush [3]

I had a Vision in a strange new stereo, with our Savior in each eye, of a Suffering Projected but never felt in the one, and of a Suffering Felt but never Represented in the other. I was so stricken by the Irony, Mary, or should I call you by your incarnation, Marie,[4] that my fractured vision is cascading into the shards of language, the shattered signs of your image forming a pattern on my screen.[5]

Through the apertures of the Difference Engine forming "my" consciousness flows a synesthetic vision, an ecology of voices resounding in their inquiring courses, circulating through and around me into all of the cracks in Empire. Beyond the filmic apparatus internalized by the cinematic persona of modernity, the cyborg mind is thoroughly dialogical, unselfconsciously hybridizing itself with the variegated patterns of information she meets, an embodied cybernaut riding the interface between self and other on the continuously curling wave of living semiosis. Information is written in silicon as in blood, and there are sharks in the sea of information north of Haiti, programmed to know no mercy for the refugee.[6]

So, let there be questions and, from them, mercy, and decided political action to transform the 'salubrious' world order of techno-imperial capitalism in a renaissance worthy of the season -- the rebellious vivacity of spring. And now, a pilgrimage of voices:

Krik? Krak!
A Morality Play in Three Acts

Act 1 -- Hell to Haiti

"We tell the stories so that the young ones will know what comes before them. They ask Krik? We say Krak! Our stories are kept in our hearts."[7]

Krik? Has George W. Bush's Army of Compassion intervened in Haiti to save Aristide from his own people, and his people from themselves, as they claim? Are George W., Colin P., "Dick" C. (another Krik? -- is that an initial or a grade he got in homeland economics?), D. Rumsfeld, and J. Ashcroft (bless his late Gaul stones, which is what the French threw at the Romans in the First Century BCE) faced with the sailing rocks of an ungrateful world, as they shed blood for all by making us -- or at least the world's underpaid -- bleed?

JOHNNY -- PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI -- I was living in the gutter, dressing in old clothes and begging at the airport when President Aristide took office in 1990. One of the first things Titid [as President Aristide was popularly known] did when he moved into the National Palace was invite a group of children who sleep in the streets to visit the palace and speak out about the conditions of the street children.[8]

PRESIDENT ARISTIDE: ... First of all, I didn't leave Haiti because I wanted to leave Haiti. They [the Americans] forced me to leave Haiti. It was a kidnapping, which they call coup d'état or [inaudible] ...forced resignation for me. It wasn't a resignation. It was a kidnapping and under the cover of coup d'état.[9]

SECRETARY OF STATE COLIN POWELL: Having dismissed the notion that Mr. Aristide had been forced out, instead characterizing him as a flawed leader who had not governed democratically: "But having said that, we tried to help him,'' Mr. Powell said. ''We tried to get him into a process with the opposition. But by the time this thing came to a crisis, the opposition had been so disappointed and so resentful and untrusting of President Aristide's efforts over the years that we couldn't get that together."[10]

EDWIDGE DANTICAT: The yellow prison building was like a fort, large and strong as in the days when it was used by the American marines who had built it. The Americans taught us how to build prisons. By the end of the 1915 occupation, the police in the city really knew how to hold human beings trapped in cages, even women like Manman who was accused of having wings of flame.[11]

HELL TO HAITI: Between 1849 and 1913, the US Navy entered Haitian waters 24 times to "protect American lives and property." The US invasion of 1915 brought back slavery to Haiti in all but name and imposed a US-designed constitution giving US corporations free rein. After ruling for 19 years the US withdrew leaving its wealth in the safe hands of the murderous National Guard it had created. In November 1935, Major General Smedley D. Butler explained the logic of intervention: I spent thirty-three years and four months in active service as a member of our country's most agile military force - the Marine Corps... And during that period I spent most of my time being a high-class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street, and for the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer for capitalism.[12]

REPRESENTATIVE MAXINE WATERS (California, Democrat): ''He [Aristide] was forced out," as Mr. Aristide [said] by phone on Wednesday. ''He told me that he did not go of his own will.''[13]

ROGER F. NORIEGA (the assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere): We do not have an obligation to put American lives at risk to save every government that might ask for help ... In the case of Haiti it was a difficult decision, but I think it was the right one.[14]

GEORGE W BUSH: And anyone in the world, including the Arab world, who works and sacrifices for freedom has a loyal friend in the United States of America.[15]

NATIONAL SECURITY STRATEGY: The United States should invest time and resources into building international relationships and institutions that can help manage local crises when they emerge. The United States should be realistic about its ability to help those who are unwilling or unready to help themselves. Where and when people are ready to do their part, we will be willing to move decisively.[16]

JOHNNY: Yesterday at the Foundation I saw gangsters and criminals in army uniforms destroy the hopes and dreams of the Haitian people. They destroyed the building, burned books and killed many people. A new government run by these people will surely be bad not only for the children but for all the people of Haiti.[17]

JESUS (recovering from the stun of the aforementioned sailing rock): et offerebant illi parvulos ut tangeret illos discipuli autem comminabantur offerentibus quos cum videret Iesus indigne tulit et ait illis sinite parvulos venire ad me et ne prohibueritis eos talium est enim regnum Dei amen dico vobis quisque non receperit regnum Dei velut parvulus non intrabit in illud et conplexans eos et inponens manus super illos benedicebat eos. ("And they were bringing the little children to him in order that he might touch them; the disciples, however, rebuked those who were bringing them. When Jesus saw this he was indignant and said to them, 'Allow the little ones to come to me and do not prohibit them. For the kingdom of God is theirs. Truly I tell you, if each person does not regain the kingdom of God just as a little child he will not enter into it.' And embracing them and putting his hands upon them he blessed them." (Mark 10.13-16)[18]

DEBBIE: I saw him in the marketplace! Everyone says that he's the son of God, but I don't care one way or the other because he's just so CUTE!!! O.K., he's not hot like a gladiator or a centurion, but he's really sensitive and you can tell that he thinks about things and then goes, "Be nice to people," and I'm like, that is so true, and I wonder if he's seeing anyone![19]

JOHNNY: I was just a little child at that time [when President Aristide came to power] but with Titid I felt important. We went to Titid and told him that we wanted to have a voice in democracy, to have a voice for children and he gave us Radyo Timoun. We were the first children's radio station in the world, run by children and promoting the human rights of all Haitians. We spoke on the air about the news, about our hopes and opinions. Adults all over the country heard our voices and were forced to accept that we children are people too.[20]

Act II: The Stations of the Cross -- A Tragicomedy

GEORGE W BUSH: (After ushers remove Virtue by compassionate force for revealing proprietary information): ... And tonight I have a message for the brave and oppressed people of Iraq: Your enemy is not surrounding your country -- your enemy is ruling your country. (Applause.) And the day he and his regime are removed from power will be the day of your liberation. (Applause.) ... [21]

OEDIPUS: ô paides oiktroi, gnôta kouk agnôta moi
prosêltheth' himeirontes: eu gar oid' hoti
noseite pantes, kai nosountes, hôs egô
ouk estin humôn hostis ex isou nosei.

Oh pitiable children, know that I am not ignorant of
Your desire in coming here; for know well that
You all are sick but, even though you are sick,
There is not one of you who is as sick as I. [22]

VIRTUE: I love dramatic irony.

STEPHEN R. WEISMAN: There are those who argue that President Bush, perhaps unconsciously, was settling a score left unsettled in the Persian Gulf War by his father.[23]

OEDIPUS: ... egô tad', hôsperei toumou patros,

I will fight for this [cause] just as if it were
My father's...[24]

VIRTUE as stage hand, rolls a giant video monitor onto the stage on which the Image of the US President appears, surrounded by his "Vulcans";[25] a living facsimile of George W. Bush stands before the screen, looking intently at it without apparent recognition:

GEORGE W BUSH: We have seen their kind before. They're the heirs of all the murderous ideologies of the 20th century. By sacrificing human life to serve their radical visions, by abandoning every value except the will to power, they follow in the path of fascism, Nazism and totalitarianism. And they will follow that path all the way to where it ends in history's unmarked grave of discarded lies. Americans are asking, "How will we fight and win this war?[26]

VIRTUE: I love unintended irony! By the way, is it true that you and Mr. Cheney, in order to make up with the Pope, are planning to open a chain of Halliburton Oil dispensaries of Fuel and Inspiration? Will your Image really appear on every Red White and Blue Oil Sign, in Haiti as well as in Iraq, sporting the logo, "Stations of the Cross"?

Act III: Of Suffering and the Camera

WALTER BENJAMIN: ...we can readily grasp the social basis of the aura's present decay... Namely: the desire of the present-day masses to "get closer" to things, and their equally passionate concern for overcoming each thing's uniqueness [Überwindung des Einmaligen jeder Gegebenheit] by assimilating it as a reproduction.[27]

DAVID DENBY (on Mel Gibson's The Passion): At that point [the crucifixion], I said to myself, "Mel Gibson has lost it," and I was reminded of what other writers have pointed out -- that Gibson, as an actor, has been beaten, mashed, and disemboweled in many of his movies. His obsession with pain, disguised by religious feelings, has now reached a frightening apotheosis.[28]

BETTY BOWERS [on Mel Gibson's The Passion]: Never has a recovering drunk claiming to have been guided by the lethal hand of the Lord so fabulously manipulated the media and public opinion into embracing gruesome carnage. Well, other than George W. Bush and that thing in Iraq.[29]

GEORGE W BUSH: God's signs are not always the ones we look for. We learn in tragedy that his purposes are not always our own, yet the prayers of private suffering, whether in our homes or in this great cathedral are known and heard and understood.[30]

FARMER, ON DRIVING NAILS IN THE PALMS OF THE POOR: Like most rural Haitians, Chouchou and Chantal welcomed Aristide's election with great joy. For the first time, the poor -- Haiti's overwhelming majority, formerly silent -- felt they had someone representing their interests in the presidential palace. This is why the subsequent military coup d'état of September 1991 stirred great anger in the countryside, where most Haitians live. Anger was soon followed by sadness, then fear, as the country's repressive machinery, which had been held at bay during the seven months of Aristide's tenure, was speedily reactivated under the patronage of the army ... On January 25, Chouchou was dumped in a ditch to die. The army scarcely took the trouble to circulate the canard that he had stolen some bananas. (The Haitian press, by then thoroughly muzzled, did not even broadcast this false version of events; fatal beatings in the countryside did not count as news.) Relatives carried Chouchou back to Chantal and their daughter under the cover of night. By early on the morning of January 26, when I arrived, Chouchou was scarcely recognizable. His face, and especially his left temple, was deformed, swollen, and lacerated; his right temple was also scarred. His mouth was a coagulated pool of dark blood. Lower down, his neck was peculiarly swollen, his throat collared with bruises left by a gun butt. His chest and sides were badly bruised, and he had several fractured ribs. His genitals had been mutilated... . That was his front side; presumably, the brunt of the beatings had come from behind. Chouchou's back and thighs were striped with deep lash marks. His buttocks were macerated, the skin flayed down to the exposed gluteal muscles. Already some of these stigmata appeared to be infected.[31]

DAVID DENBY (regarding The Passion): Then comes the crucifixion itself, dramatized with a curious fixation on the technical details -- an arm pulled out of its socket, huge nails hammered into hands, with Caviezel [the actor playing Jesus] jumping after each whack... .[32]

EDWIDGE DANTICAT: last night they came to madan roger's house. papa hurried inside as soon as madan roger's screaming started. the soldiers were looking for her son. madan roger was screaming, you killed him already. we buried his head. you can't kill him twice... . papa had us tiptoe from the house into the latrine out back. we could hear it all from there. i thought i was going to choke on the smell of rotting poupou. they kept shouting at madan roger, did your son belong to the youth federation? wasn't he on the radio talking about the police? did he say, down with toton macoutes? did he say, down with the army? ... [33]

GEORGE W BUSH (to anti-abortion activists): We are a society with enough compassion and wealth and love to care for both mothers and their children, and to seek the promise and potential of every single life. You're working and marching on behalf of a noble cause, and affirming a culture of life. Thank you for your persistence, for defending human dignity, and for caring for every member of the human family. May God continue to bless America.[34]

DEBBIE (admiring Jesus but inadvertently distinguishing the George W Bush from former President Bill Clinton): "Everyone says that he's just totally good and devoted to all humanity and that he was sent to save us and that's why he doesn't have time for a girlfriend ..."[35]

KRIK: Who are the players in the current drama in Haiti? Is there any hope of a peaceful resolution of the conflict?

AMY WILENTZ: In the current coup, there are several players. There is the disgruntled former Haitian army (an institution with a violent and unpalatable recent history), which has been wielded many times in the service of coups d'état, often subsidized by its masters, the elite of Haiti. The elite, too, had their hand in this coup--it's hard to believe in this day and age, but they must be called the entrenched class enemies of the Haitian people. There is "a growing enthusiasm among businessmen to use the rebels as a security force," said a news report from the Los Angeles Times after the remnants of the Haitian army that helped engineer the coup descended on the capital. "[The businessmen] welcomed the rebels."[36]

EDWIDGE DANTICAT: ... sometimes hope is the biggest weapon of all to use against us. people will believe anything. they will claim to see the christ return and march on the cross backwards if there is enough hope. [37]

GEORGE W BUSH: It is appropriate that the group sponsoring this breakfast has the name Nueva Esperanza -- New Hope. Hope allows us to dream big, to pray bold, and to work hard for a better future.[38]

KRIK? Is Mel Gibson admiring his own blood-washed image as he has suffered amidst his trials in the rise to Hollywood?

STUART KLAWANS -- KRAK: The Passion of the Christ is an intensely brutal movie, whose spiritual center is located firmly behind the camera. As director and co-screenwriter, Mel Gibson is all but ecstatic before the agonies he has so painstakingly staged, and with which he so completely identifies. His surges of emotion carry you through the picture--which puts the purported central character at a disadvantage.[39]

DIANE SAWYER (to George W Bush): One of the questions that I guess people have is: Does your confidence come from feeling that -- that God is behind you?

PRESIDENT BUSH: My confidence comes from a lot of sources. I do -- I am sustained by the prayers of the people in this country. I guess an appropriate way to say this, it's one of the beautiful things about America and Americans from all walks of life is that they're willing to pray for the President and his family. And that's powerful. It's hard for me to describe to you what that means. It's -- let me just say this: It's a leap of faith to understand. And -- but I am a confident person, I am, because I believe in the values of America. [40]

NOAM CHOMSKY: It is possible that Bush is telling the truth when he rants about his born-again experiences and how he is driving Evil from the world, but I suspect he is just playing the role for which he is being trained by his handlers, and that the religious fanaticism is mostly part of a plan to throw a little red meat to a substantial constituency. The US is one of the most extreme religious fundamentalist societies in the world. It is hard to believe that the actual planners -- Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Powell, etc. -- take any of this seriously.[41]

GEORGE W BUSH: We must adapt the concept of imminent threat to the capabilities and objectives of today's adversaries. Rogue states and terrorists do not seek to attack us using conventional means... The United States has long maintained the option of preemptive actions to counter a sufficient threat to our national security. The greater the threat, the greater is the risk of inaction -- and the more compelling the case for taking anticipatory action to defend ourselves, even if uncertainty remains as to the time and place of the enemy's attack. To forestall or prevent such hostile acts by our adversaries, the United States will, if necessary, act preemptively. [42]

JESUS (developing a sense of humor): et dixerunt ei magister haec mulier modo deprehensa est in adulterio in lege autem Moses mandavit nobis huiusmodi lapidare tu ergo quid dicis haec autem dicebant temptantes eum ut possent accusare eum Iesus autem inclinans se deorsum digito scribebat in terra cum autem perseverarent interrogantes eum erexit se et dixit eis qui sine peccato est vestrum primus in illam lapidem mittat et iterum se inclinans scribebat in terra (John 8.6-8) "And they said to him, master, this woman has been caught in an adulterous act. In the law Moses, moreover, has mandated us to stone such a person. What, therefore, do you say? Since they were saying these things to test him so that they would be able to accuse him, however, Jesus bent downwards and began writing on the earth with his finger. When, however, they persevered in questioning him he rose up and said to them: 'Let the one among you who is without sin first throw a stone at her.' And bending himself down again he continued writing on the ground."[43]

DEBBIE (reprise): Everyone says that he's just totally good and devoted to all humanity and that he was sent to save us and that's why he doesn't have time for a girlfriend, although I swear I saw Mary Magdalene doodling in the sand with a stick, writing "Mrs. Jesus Christ" and "Merry Xmas from Mary and Jesus Christ and All the Apostles," with little holly leaves all around it...[44]

GEORGE W BUSH (on one of the three pillars of US foreign policy, misspeaking in a manner that would gratify Freud): The second pillar of peace and security in our world is the willingness of free nations, when the last resort arrives, to retain [sic] aggression and evil by force... . duty sometimes requires the violent restraint of violent men. In some cases, the measured use of force is all that protects us from a chaotic world.[45]

AMY WILENTZ: You will notice in the next few weeks that the Haitian people, who have been featured so prominently in recent weeks -- those crowds demonstrating, or those bands of opportunists looting and pillaging, those people cowering as shots ring out or sprawled across a pavement -- will fade from the scene, because they have been used to their full extent by the masters of the coup. Now the reconstituted Haitian army in all its machismo will maraud through the slums eradicating pockets of support for the deposed leader. [46]

EDWIDGE DANTICAT: my mother buries her face in the latrine wall. she starts to cry. you can hear madan roger screaming. they are beating her, pounding on her until you don't hear anything else. manman tells papa, you cannot let them kill somebody just because you are afraid. papa says, oh yes, you can let them kill somebody because you are afraid. they are the law. it is their right.[47]

DAVID DENBY: What's most depressing about "The Passion" is the thought that people will take their children to see it. Jesus said, "Suffer the little children to come unto me," not, "Let the little children watch me suffer."[48]

NOAM CHOMSKY: Bush II planners are even more dedicated to undermining democracy and independence [in Haiti], and despised Aristide and the popular organizations that swept him to power with perhaps even more passion than their predecessors. The forces that reconquered the country are mostly inheritors of the US-installed army and paramilitary terrorists.[49]

GEORGE W BUSH: Moral truth is the same in every culture, in every time, and in every place. Targeting innocent civilians for murder is always and everywhere wrong. Brutality against women is always and everywhere wrong. There can be no neutrality between justice and cruelty, between the innocent and the guilty. We are in a conflict between good and evil, and America will call evil by its name. By confronting evil and lawless regimes, we do not create a problem, we reveal a problem. And we will lead the world in opposing it.[50]

VIRTUE: I love unintended irony! KRIK -- What was the policy you mentioned earlier about states who support terrorists?

CHOMSKY -- KRAK: Recall the core element of the Bush doctrine, which has "already become a de facto rule of international relations," Harvard's Graham Allison writes in Foreign Affairs: "those who harbor terrorists are as guilty as the terrorists themselves," in the President's words, and must be treated accordingly, by large-scale bombing and invasion. [51]

VIRTUE: Does that mean that the Bush Administration will use those "armies of compassion" to invade themselves?

OEDIPUS: egô men oun toiosde tôi te daimoni
tôi t' andri tôi thanonti summachos pelô:
kateuchomai de ton dedrakot', eite tis
heis ôn lelêthen eite pleionôn meta,
kakon kakôs nin amoron ektripsai bion:
epeuchomai d', oikoisin ei xunestios
en tois emois genoit' emou suneidotos,
pathein haper toisd' artiôs êrasamên.

I pray solemnly that the slayer, whoever he is,
whether he alone is guilty or he has partners,
may, in the horrible way he deserves,
wear out his unblest life.
And for myself I pray that if he should,
with my knowledge, become a resident of my house,
I may suffer the same things
which I have just called down on others.[52]

JOHNNY: I do not believe that President Aristide has abandoned us to this misery. There is no electricity so it is hard to find news about what is really happening but I have heard he was forced to leave and I believe that. He would never leave us willingly. Last week Titid said on the radio he would die before he would give up the struggle for democracy in Haiti.[53]

CHOMSKY: For those who are concerned with the substance of democracy and human rights, the basic tasks at home are also clear enough. They have been carried out before, with no slight success, and under incomparably harsher conditions elsewhere, including the slums and hills of Haiti. We do not have to submit, voluntarily, to living in a failed state suffering from an enormous democratic deficit.[54]

GEORGE W. BUSH: In democratic and successful societies, men and women do not swear allegiance to malcontents and murderers; they turn their hearts and labor to building better lives.[55]


So close the shutters of my Cogitation Machine with the ebbing Ecology of Vision, as "I," the steersman Kybernetes, sink toward troubled sleep, like a bathysphere in the luminous Sea of Information. I hope there are no sharks.


[1] Patrick Chamoiseau, Texaco. Trans. Rose-Myriam Réjouis and Val Vinokurov, New York: Pantheon, 1997.

[2] Walter Benjamin: Selected Writings, Vol.3, 1935-1938, ed. Howard Eiland, Michael W. Jennings, et al., trans. by Edmund Jephcott, Howard Eiland, et al. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2002, pp. 100-133, quotation on pp. 104-105.

[3] Speech transcript, 1 February 2001, in Thomas M. Freiling, ed, George W. Bush on God and Country. Washington DC: Allegiance Press, 2004, p. 199.

[4] Marie-Sophie Laborieux, the narrator of Chamoiseau's Texaco, whose fictive notebooks tell the story of struggle for Creole identity and people's liberation in Martinique. The title of the novel is taken from that of a shantytown that Creole residents of Martinique constructed near the site abandoned by the well known oil company. As Marie-Sophie's notebook recalls, "Texaco, the oil company which used to occupy that space and which had given its name to it, had left aeons ago. It had picked up its barrels, carted off its reservoirs, taken apart its tankers' sucking pipes, and left. Its tank truck sometimes parked there, to keep one foot on the dear property. Around that abandoned space are our hutches, our very own Texaco, a company in the business of survival" (Chamoiseau, p. 24).

[5] "Hundreds of believers, most of them Hispanic, came late Monday and through the day Tuesday to see the shattered image of the Virgin Mary. Neither police nor a live video camera trained on the image offered answers to who might have broken three windows that once held the face and veil of the iridescent image on an office building on U.S. 19 [in Clearwater, Florida]. "There is no respect in this world," said Cesar Avila, 24, of San Luis Potosi, Mexico, holding back tears. "This is too much of a surprise." "Faithful gather to mourn shattered Mary," St. Petersburg Times, 3 March 2004, available online at: For the significance of the a forementioned windows for The City of Disney, see Augustine of event-scenes e037 available online at:

[6] For the above reference to a cognitive "engine" (lit. Charles Babbage's early computer) see Bruce Sterling and William Gibson, The Difference Engine (New York: Bantam, 1991); see Walter Benjamin's aforementioned "Function of the Work of art," sec. XIV p. 115, for discussion of the internalized filmic apparatus ensconced in modern consciousness. For sharks and refugees in the Caribbean and South Atlantic, see Edwidge Danticat, "Children of the Sea," Krik? Krak!. New York: Vintage, 1996, pp. 1-29; for the most influential discussion of the figure of the "cyborg" see Donna Haraway, Simias, Cyborgs, and Women: The Reinvention of Nature. New York: Routledge, 1991.

[7] Sal Scalora, from "White Darkness/Black Dreamings": Hati: Feeding the Spirit, quoted in full at the outset of Danticat, Krik? Krak!.

[8] Johnny, "Port-au-Prince," Znet, 11 March 2004. Available online at: Editor's note: Johnny (last name withheld for his safety), 18, is a former youth reporter with Radyo Timoun (Children's Radio) 90.9 FM in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Available online at:

[9] Amy Goodman, "Goodman Interviews Aristide," Znet 8 March 2004. Available online at:

[10] Christopher Marquuis, "Powell and Aide Questioned On Haiti by Panel's Skeptics," NYT 4 March 2004.

[11] Edwidge Danticat, "Nineteen Thirty-Seven," Krik? Krak!, p.31-49, quotation on p. 35.

[12] David Cromwell and David Edwards, "Bringing Hell to Haiti, Part 1," 1 March 2004. Available online at ZNET:

[13] Marquis, loc. cit.

[14] Marquis, loc cit.

[15] "The Tyrant has Fallen," loc. cit.

[16] "The National Security Strategy of the United States of America," part IV, "Work with Others to Defuse Regional Conflicts." Available online at:

[17] "Port-au-Prince," loc. cit.

[18] My translation. The full text of Jerome's Latin Vulgate Bible is available online at the Perseus Project:

[19] Paul Rudnick, "The Gospel of Debbie," The New Yorker, 8 March 2004. Available online at:

[20] "Port-au-Prince," loc. cit.

[21] State of the Union Address, 28 January 2003. Available online at: For the subsequent claims made by the President's advisors, see "Top Bush Officials Push Case Against Saddam," "Inside Politics." Available online at:

[22] Sophocles, Oidipus Tyrannus / Oedipus the King, lines 58-60, my translation; Greek text available online at the Perseus Project, loc. cit.

[23] Steven R. Weisman, "The World: The Whys of War; Truth Is the First Casualty. Is Credibility the Second?", NYT 8 June 2003.

[24] Oedipus Tyrannus, line 264, my translation, following Sir Richard Jebb's reading; see the relevant line in the Perseus Project text.

[25] "During the campaign Bush's foreign policy advisers came up with a nickname to describe themselves. They dubbed their team the Vulcans, in honor of the Roman god of fire, the forge and metalwork. Rice, who was serving as foreign policy coordinator for the Bush campaign, had been raised in Birmingham, Alabama, where a mammoth fifty-six-foot statue of Vulcan on a hill overlooking downtown paid homage to the city's steel industry The name had started as a joke, but it caught on, and the campaign group began to use it in public. That word, Vulcans, captured perfectly the image the Bush foreign-policy team sought to convey, a sense of power, toughness, resilience and durability. (Ironically, Birmingham's statue of the Vulcan was taken down for repairs in 1999 because it was beginning to fall apart, a detail that the Bush team understandably did not emphasize when it began employing the metaphor.)" James Mann, Rise of the Vulcans. New York: Viking, 2004, introduction.

[26] Transcript of President Bush's address to a joint session of Congress on Thursday night, September 20, 2001. Available online at:

[27] "The Work of Art in the Age of its Reproducibility," p. 105.

[28] "Nailed," p. 84.

[29] "Mel Gibson's The Passion of Christ," available online at the satiric Also see the Presidential Prayer Squad:

[30] Transcript of President Bush's Prayer Service Remarks, National Day of Prayer and Remembrance for the Victims Of the Terrorist Attacks on September 11, 2001, Washington National Cathedral, 14 September, 2001; Available online at:

[31] Paul Farmer, Pathologies of Power: Health, Human Rights, and the New War on the Poor . Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003, ch. 1.

[32] "Nailed: Mel Gibson's 'The Passion of the Christ,' The New Yorker, 1 March 2004, pp. 84-85.

[33] "Children of the Sea," Krik? Krak!, pp. 1-30, quotation on pp. 15-16; bold and lower-case letters in original.

[34] Speech, 22 January 2002, Freiling, ed, George W. Bush on God and Country, p. 136.

[35] Paul Rudnick, The Gospel of Debbie, The New Yorker, 14 March 2004, loc. cit.

[36] "Coup in Hati," The Nation, 4 March 2004. Available online at:

[37] Danticat, "Children of the Sea," Krik? Krak!, p. 19.

[38] Speech transcript, 15 May 2003, "On Hope," Freiling, p. 43.

[39] "Blind Faith," The Nation, 15 March 2004. Available online at:

[40] "Ultimate Penalty," excerpts from Diane Sawyer's ABC News interview with President Bush on the day when Saddam Hussein's capture was announced. Available online at:

[41] Junaid Alam and Noam Chomsky, "Alam Interviews Chomsky," ZNET:

[42] "The National Security Strategy of the United States of America," part V, "Prevent Our Enemies from Threatening Us, Our Allies, and Our Friends with Weapons of Mass Destruction," loc. cit.

[43] John 8.6-8, my translation.

[44] Paul Rudnick, The Gospel of Debbie, The New Yorker, 14 March 2004, loc. cit.

[45] Speech Transcript, 19 November 2003, "On America's Moral Compass," Freiling, p. 224.

[46] "Coup in Haiti," The Nation, loc. cit.

[47] Danticat, "Children of the Sea," Krik? Krak!, p. 17

[48] "Nailed," p. 86.

[49] Chomsky, "US-Hait," loc. cit.

[50] Speech transcript, June 1, 2002, "On Duty," Freiling, p. 263.

[51] Chomsky, "US-Haiti," loc. cit.

[52] Oedipus Tyrannus, lines 244-251, Jebb trans., Perseus Project text, loc. cit.

[53] "Port-au-Prince," loc. cit.

[54] Chomsky, "US-Haiti," loc. cit.

[55] Speech Transcript, 19 November 2003, "On America's Moral Compass," George W. Bush on God and Country, p. 226.

Daniel White is Professor of philosophy and the humanities in the Wilkes Honors College of Florida Atlantic University. He is author of Postmodern Ecology: Communication, Evolution, and Play and Labyrinths of the Mind: the Self in the Postmodern Age (both published at Albany: State University of New York Press, 1998). He is currently writing a new book on Nietzsche's philosophy of culture.