An Editorial From Shhhh! Digital Media...

If you read this intro and think that you've read this post, you're wrong. I've extensively edited it and turned it into something worth a second read. If you haven't read it, then you might be in for a treat.

I hope that you (my readers) had a good holiday this year, whether you were celebrating something around this time of year or not.
My holidays were spent in a very modest way, though I did enjoy voluminous amounts of food (and some drink too), but not much more than that, while most of it I spent alone. I did however have the abuse of my harassers to keep me company through much of the holiday as I do all year year round, but I have a feeling that's a dynamic present in many people's lives currently. 

That's an issue I'll address here once again and I'll be getting right to the point of the issues, without griping or complaining as members of this cult might imply and keep in mind that I'm still very much on the red side of the fence with my Shhhh! Digital colours as I'll always be.

Oh, and no blow. Make of that what you will, because I don't know what it is myself, and it has nothing to do with me. I am not Guyanese and this content isn't written by a person named Bobby, or his romantic friend that plays guitar. I write everything here, and I don't play guitar but its a wonderful instrument in the hands of a skilled player.

The Holiday Odyssey...

Now first of all, I received a LOT of attacks around my story, The Butterfly Dragon: The Two Butterflies - A Holiday Odyssey and for a number of reasons that I'm sure that most of you would have likely guessed.

First of all, most such attacks centered around the idea that I'm not a father myself and have never raised a child. However, I do believe that I would make a good father, and I definitely would have much earlier in life had I certain awareness at my disposal back then, that I have in droves now, which gets to my point: 

I was once a child and a teenager, and I have a lot of experience from all sides of the proverbial fences that one might encounter as obstacles during their life growing up, and I somehow managed to get through all of those hurdles despite the fact that I didn't have some key pieces of knowledge that would have helped me to make some very informed decisions early in life. 

No, that is definitely not the fault of my parents, so this isn't a "I blame my parents" issue at all, because not even they knew or understood the nature of that beast that lurks beneath the surface as part of a truly faulty architecture designed by people who didn't understand how it would be manipulated against the population to take everything from them, including their children, by people whose sole motivation in life is such a treacherous pursuit.

In having grown up and navigated most all of these challenges successfully from some pretty trying and difficult circumstances, I have some experience to share that might be of help to parents raising children right now. Don't take advice from people who haven't tried living life in many different ways and pursuits, trying to find the one that best suits them. Their experience is fleeting and limited. You want to take advice from people who've faced a wide variety of challenges. Not those who found their path immediately, and somehow got it all right the first time, because nobody does. There's struggles in everyone's life, but some of us have ventured down many different avenues before they settled into what works (or isn't working) for them. If they're alive and healthy and have few to little issues, chances are their advice can be good, regardless of their bankroll. I'm one such person who had done many, many different things and none of my friends or family is aware of them all. So I have some things to say, and I have some things to share that I've learned from my own experience, and from the experiences of some (legendary) people who've walked the same or similar path.

You send a child you've raised off into life with what you hope is going to be everything they need to survive and thrive on their own, but what most people don't understand is that where ever you're coming from, and this is especially true of the middle and upper class, that there are people in this world whose sole purpose is to break down everything you taught your children. Absolutely everything.

To them, its a game and life is the playing field and most such people have nothing to lose in living their life that way. If there's any inkling that a young adult came from a middle class or upper class family, they'll be on that one as soon as their parents are no longer around. To them, its a game of breaking everything about you that comes from your parents. Especially if you have a step father or step mother, and one who has invested their life in raising you as if you were their own child.

That certainly doesn't mean that everyone that is part of the class system, especially lower classes is about conducting themselves that way, because they aren't. They're held hostage by the people around them who are that way, and rather than risk their family in trying to stop such pursuits, they just weather it, a very small percentage of them helping those who do. Those who don't, just work their butts off in the hopes of making enough to level up to be able to move to surround themselves with people who are not so much focused on destroying everything they taught their children.

Right now, the entire world is being held hostage by such people, and the children are the ones who are at risk, though not because their parents aren't trying hard enough, but because they simply don't understand the full breadth of the problem. Limited experience leads to limited ability to impress upon a growing life the kinds of things they're going to need to be ready for when they're on their own. However, nobody can teach a child everything they need to know. The rest is up to them, and so there are things that I've observed that for me, in the worst of experiences, seemed to work, and though I'm not a millionaire or billionaire and struggling from day to day to eek out an existence, I am certainly happy with my own contribution to society thus far, and that's possible because of my parents. However, even they didn't know what lurks beneath.

Self Confidence And Independence

These virtues are the absolutely most important aspects about growing up that one should develop early. The ability to say no when they need to, even to people they assume are in authority and sometimes even to people that they trust. Even to their friends or those who would manipulate them with peer pressure.

Growing up, and from the time I left home, I faced many things but by some miracle, I didn't develop a narcotics dependency or habit (I don't even smoke now). Sure, I dabbled in things that were popular during that time in the late 1980s and a bit into my adulthood in the 1990s, but I never took any of them with me. They never became a part of my life, with the exception of cigarette smoking. I was a cigarette smoker for 27 years before quitting cold turkey on a whim and a decision. I woke up one day and decided that I was no longer a smoker, and I've never had a cigarette since. Throughout that entire process of stopping, I kept a full shrink wrapped package of cigarettes on me so that I always knew I had the choice. When I knew I was done with it, I threw the entire pack away, still in its shrink wrap.

If I would have had the kind of self confidence and independence that one needs to learn early, I probably wouldn't have started at all, and again that's not the fault of my parents at all. They didn't know the nature of that beast that lurks beneath, however in the case of cigarettes, that was my choice and a foolish one indeed because it cost me 27 years of money and my health. Having had the confidence to know that my real friends would not be offended when I said no to a cigarette is key to this issue, and understanding that if they were no longer my friend because I refused, then they were not my friends in the first place. So the only person I really let down was myself by not having the courage to say no.

Some people have habits that they reinforce through the numbers of other people who have the exact same habit. These are people who validate their own dependencies according to the number of other people who have the same dependencies, and by their ability to introduce new people into that same dependency. The more there are, the more right it is to have that dependency no matter what the rest of society thinks about it. That's their logic whether they know it or express it or even realize it. Those people don't have any real friends, because the minute they dropped their dependency, the people they thought were their friends would abandon them because they're no longer reinforcing their own dependency or habit and we tend to spend time with people who have the same life habits. The ones who stick around after you've given up those habits are your real friends.

That's the way it works with just about everything, especially cigarette smoking and narcotics. Drinking too, but there are people who drink and mingle with those who don't. Regardless, the things that you choose to do in life will lead you down many different paths and it is through these paths that you'll find what it is to have a true friend. It isn't the people who give you a cigarette when you're out. They're just justifying their own habit by reinforcing yours, and its the exact same thing with narcotics. If you're going to choose as an adult to try those things, know that its your own decision, because there is no worse feeling in the world to have become hooked on something when you were sixteen, that took your entire youth, life and career from you before you woke up and realized that you're sixty five years old, and that you wasted it all chasing a high, simply because you didn't have the courage to say no because you took for granted your own right to have an opinion and decide what's right for you, rather than people you think are your friends. They're not. There are people whose sole purpose in life is to break down all the good your parents tried to drive into your head before you went out there into that big terrifying and exhilarating world.

Confidence and independence is an absolute must. To have the courage to say no when you know that you need to say it and truly feel it. Knowing that a quick choice might lead down a road you'll later regret. Remember, those decisions that you're making, are affecting the life and happiness of someone much older than you. Yourself in twenty to thirty years.

If I had a daughter, I'd make sure she could say no when she truly wanted to, and to know the difference. She'd also understand that her choices are her responsibility, so she'd better learn to take care of herself, and herself thirty years onward.

Just because I've never been a parent, doesn't mean that I don't have the right to say. You who've never walked or strayed from the path and into the wild have no idea what your children are going to face. I do.

There's people out there who believe that we're not ourselves from any moment to the next. That we somehow change. Become possessed by little personality demons that float around invisibly in the world (and I don't mean virii or bacteria) and inhabit our body to turn us completely into someone else and these are people who'd do everything they could to deny you of your own identity and rights. 

People have every right to their beliefs, but there are people who'd take that right to belief and skew it as a right to exert and enforce that belief upon others of their choosing, and that's not a right that they have.

There are people who'd do everything they can to undermine everything your parents taught you and to break you, just for fun and I've seen all of this myself, experienced it and lived it too.

Do you want your children to be without the right tools and awareness to be able to deal with these aspects of our daily modern life?

Now having these attitudes doesn't mean you have to be a tyrant either. I believe in harm reduction programs, and I'm someone who's bullied by lots of people quite often for saying what needs to be said.

I stand in front of my stories defensively, and A Holiday Odyssey is no different. I won't budge for it from any kind of pressure.

Does it make me a hypocrite because I've dabbled in certain things? Not at all. It makes me a very apt guide when it comes to dealing with such issues as I'm mostly unscathed by my experiences, and with the exception of an enjoyment of good food with good drink, I have no vices other than writing, and breathing. I tried kicking breathing once, but that's another story you can read about in The Last Lonely Lounge Comic...

Having A Voice And Using It

In this day and age, there are people who believe that there are specific criteria that those who become public figures should possess.

One, is that they should have a perfectly flawless past. If they don't, then they shouldn't be a public figure or be denied of the right to have a say in front of an audience.

That they should always say what doesn't challenge the status quot or the way of things.

That's pretty much it.

Anyone who steps outside of those boundaries can become targeted by people who will attempt to remove them from the public eyes and ears so to speak. They might dig into their past. They might harass them in attempt to provoke reactions from them that violate those two rules from the paragraph above of being a public figure.

Now I'm not trying to put down people who do qualify under those two criteria, because there are many very interesting public figures and speakers who do. However, there is a point to all of this.

The most radical advances in history and society occurred because people had the courage to violate those two criteria above. 

This is the basis of nearly all art during the Renaissance. To challenge the status quot. 

This is the challenge that science faced during the dark ages.

Nearly every figure in history who had something to say that radically changed society, challenged those two criteria in one way or another and few of those people had flawless pasts, and don't forget that the word flaw is subjective. 

What some see as a flaw, others see as a polished shine. 

Some things that are seen as flaws, are merely personal and private matters, only becoming labeled as flaws when that privacy is given the light of day and exposure to the public. The very point of one of my current story lines in The Two Butterflies.

Most of what I'm saying relates to this tragic news story I'm about to talk about.

In recent news, it was tragic to hear about the suicide of an actor, a performer from the critically acclaimed movie Parasite, who it was found had (allegedly) dabbled in cannabis. The actor, who is from a country that has strict laws when it comes to cannabis was under investigation for such activity and apparently took his own life from the stress that investigation caused. That's a case of a situation where someone might have been targeted to remove them from life as a public figure simply over that matter, where in other places in the world we regard it much differently. So when I read this story, it hit me in a way but I thought at that time that I shouldn't write anything in response to it. There are people out there who would use such a news story in attempt to puppeteer me and others into writing a response, and I just felt it wasn't appropriate at that point in time.

The reason I'm writing about it now is more to do with this attitude that is growing amongst some people that the right to be a public figure, should be enforced by the measure of the flawlessness of the figure themselves. The case of this poor actor who took his own life, that pressure he must have been under would be beyond fathoming for most people. To be living in a society where the laws and customs are very strict when it comes to something like cannabis, all the while living in the public eye under nearly around the clock scrutiny by the press and fans alike, while maintaining this perfectly flawless image, which is absolutely inhuman in itself.

These aspects of the lives of public figures can become like puppet strings, and yes there are people who'd use them that way. Having a public figure who'll express what you want them to express, and speak up on what you want them to speak up on is a power that others probably seek, and definitely attempt to do so through the pressure of being what's expected of you, versus what you actually are. So this poor actor probably was under an immense amount of pressure to come to that decision and it truly is mind boggling that there are people who'd use those kinds of puppet strings in that way, to exploit the power of having someone speak up when you pull the right string. I think its just disgusting.

When it comes to the laws and customs in said country, I'm not speaking out against them at all. Those are things that will change if and when they need to at the hands of the people, however I do ask that those people in that country consider the immense pressure that poor soul must have been under, for being involved in something that where I live is no longer a criminal offence and is sold freely as a controlled substance much like alcohol. It isn't the fault of that actor, or of law enforcement either, but for his passing to go unnoticed and for the people not to consider what that poor soul must have gone through for something that I see as being so trivial from my corner of the world, is just tragic.

I hope that his situation leads to a social realization of the kinds of pressures there are living as a public figure in front of the people, enough so that it helps to protect others in the same or similar situations from arriving at the same fate.

Group Bully Controlled Democracy

The last thing I have to say deals with the state of affairs that we're headed into this year, considering situations like the current wars, one in Europe and one in the Middle East are exposing about the nature of our democracies in the west.

It used to be that you could have an opinion, one that you often kept in reserve and expressed through the power of your political vote, hence steering our future in the means that we all have a say, as in representation. Where elected figures represent our interests in government based upon the number of seats they hold in parliament (in Canada where I live, and where Shhhh! Digital Media both .com and .ca are headquartered under the same roof) and from very meagre means I might add (thank you TCHC). We all have to survive and though I've spent the better part of my life working nearly every single day and even in the worst of circumstances, there are times when I need help to survive as well. Running a growing organization that you built from the ground up isn't easy.

That used to be the way that most people who took part in our society would do things and how their opinions would find pursuit into how the country was run.

Nowadays, we're living in a time where our opinions can be a dangerous thing to have, and can lead us into situations where our ability to vote fairly is compromised.

For instance, it is dangerous to have an opinion about the situation in Europe and the Middle East, to one side or the other. With Europe, the way I look at it is that its like seeing two friends fighting. The moment you step in and try to stop them, you'll be fighting both of them. 

If however you take sides, you stand to lose one friend, despite the fact that the other friend is behaving like a jerk. However, there are issues with these friends that you as their third friend are not aware of, because these two friends were in bed for a long time when they were each one of the first five founding members of the USSR. So there's a history going on between these two former friends.

That, and there's a lot of pressure and politics at play as a line gets drawn between the two sides, dividing Europe in much the same way that it was previously divided between NATO and the Warsaw Pact from the late 1940s until the late 1980s. I personally don't want to see either of my friends lose their autonomy, nor would I want to see the everyone else jump into the fight as the sides are drawn throughout Europe.

In the Middle East, we have another situation where Israel was attacked and hostages were taken, destabilizing the region and thrusting it into a war upon extremism, which the rest of the world has used to brand the conflict and justify the growing antisemitism present throughout the world. Fortunately, Israel has a strong allegiance amongst the peoples of other neighbouring and nearby countries who are making efforts to keep this conflict contained, while the goal of the extremists is obviously to draw in other players and turn the conflict global. Such a shame when so much headway had been made between Israel and the West Bank.

In the rest of the world, we've got these two lines dividing us all socially and taking sides can be a dangerous thing. We live in a world now, and this is true even in Toronto, Canada, where in some communities, the right to have an opinion or to act politically towards the end of that opinion (such as by voting or by writing a letter to your representative on an issue) can lead to circumstances where the under lying gang structure on either side of these issues exposes itself long enough  to wreak havoc upon your life. That is, if you vote one way, or another, you're going to experience repercussions from one of those two gangs, and they're currently the ones controlling communities. Allow me to explain.

Most people don't realize that these wars, though they're physically being fought with guns and munitions in their respective regions, that these wars are also being fought in communities throughout North America and the rest of the west, and likely in other parts of the world too. If you sway to one side, chances are you're going to experience the repercussions socially and sometimes very extremely from other people in your community, some of whom are operating within a group who have direct communication with the regions of these conflicts. We're all being thrust into a serious situation in this regard.

If I say something that resounds to one side of the conflict, there's a good chance that the other side (depending upon whom they are), might attack me with the intent to provoke a reaction that undermines my credibility, so as to sabotage anything I've said previously, and this once again goes hand in hand with the public branding of these wars and my paragraphs on having the right to be a public figure., though the issue is that we're being divided into brands, without truly knowing what those brands represent. Maybe as red versus blue or brown versus blue and what not. I can't go a day without Shhhh! Digital Media being cast as a Nazi regime, despite the fact that nothing could be further from the truth, and I certainly still have an great love of Germany and my friends in the Middle East (Israel amongst them and those containing the conflict for certain).

This public branding, especially of colours is leaking over into other issues and creating even more conflict as a result of this generic and ambiguous branding, by dulling people's senses to the actual issues regionally. Pretty shallow considering that where these conflicts are occurring, there's people dying every day. 

From a diplomatic perspective, if I was living somewhere where half of my family were killed in an artillery strike, and it came back to me that a bunch of people in some North American community had turned the conflict they died in, into a sort of social brand competition, I'd be a little bit upset and harbour some animosity towards such people for their shallowness in the face of death. If enough such people become our diplomatic voice, our real diplomats are going to have a very difficult time when it comes to the future with those countries, especially where we're helping to resolve matters of urgency in the conflict and not just to line our pockets by guaranteeing that we're on the short list of their trade partners when the dust settles.

When I have to worry about the fact that if I vote one way or another, that I might be attacked on my way home from the poll by a local gang that supports the other side, it makes me realize that our system is currently under attack, and we're secretly on the road to despotism and gang controlled communities, who will make sure that we vote the right way in accordance with their desires rather than our own.

There's a lot more at stake than most people realize, and if you compare our situation now with how it was in the 1990s, you'll understand exactly what I mean. I think that we need to be more actively concerned about how these conflicts are affecting other places in the world, including our own, while nobody should ever be intimidated or frightened into expressing their concern to representatives or to voting according to their own choice, and not that of an intimidating gang.

I'd never want a world absent of any colours, but its certainly disheartening to see how they can sometimes be used to remove the public awareness from the actual issues, rather than how they're being branded generically and ambiguously to fit into some larger scope where they don't belong. When that happens, the issues themselves get diluted and very quickly, lose their context.

Anyway, that's enough for now. I'll be back to writing possibly this week, though I haven't decided that yet. I have a fair bit to do this week, though I've plans to write. I just haven't decided whether I'm going to. I was attacked a lot on December 31 during the day and into the night, and then on New Year's day throughout most of the day by the same identity theft and abuse cult. I don't want to reward them, and I don't want to punish my real Shhhh! Digital Media readers. Especially when there's so much effort to take it away from me by a local cult in my community. 

Seems they're trying to give it to someone else's credit? Maybe in New York? There is no Shhhh! Digital Media content in New York at all and certainly none of the stories you'd find here. So no red versus brown or blue versus brown for me on that note. Shhhh! Digital Media will stay right where it is in its home in Toronto, Ontario, Canada until I relocate somewhere else. However, I have many allies south of the border and I hope that they find no offence in my statements in that regard. 

I mean, I'd never try to take the inscription at the base of the Statue Of Liberty from them, just because I wrote a story about a Chinese family who immigrate from GuangZhou, China to Toronto, Ontario, Canada, when the father of that family gets hired overseas. He brings his family and with his wife, they raise their young daughter. I'm talking about The Butterfly Dragon of course, and in the current story line of both the Two Butterflies and We Who Stand On Guard, the U.S. plays a very significant role through the character Linda Delmont by the way, who is due to make an appearance in an upcoming episode.

By the way, those of you in the U.S. who have issues with the Jewish community, should read that poem inscribed onto the base of the Statue Of Liberty, which is called The New Colossus, as it was written by Jewish American poet Emma Lazarus

She's practically the soul of that Statue that lights the way into that harbour, and into the United States Of America. A gift from France to commemorate America's advances of life and liberty.

Regardless, have a good start to the week, and I'll be online doing some gaming tonight (possibly Conan Exiles, Bannerlord, Barotrauma or even Kerbal Space Program). I'll return by the end of the week with some new content to preclude what's coming for January 8th onward.

So, to finish this off:

Once again, I'm not "blow". 

I've never used cocaine or crack cocaine or heroin or methamphetamine in my life but I've helped a lot of thankless people to carry that weight for a great deal of time and I'll never do that for anyone again. 

I've never worked as a pimp or as a narcotics dealer in my life and I've never been involved with sex trafficking.

I'm not on the blue team or the brown team and never will be and I'm not mentally ill by the way with all due respect to the many people that have been stigmatized by the clich├ęs surrounding that label. I'm heterosexual but I support LGBTQ2 rights and marriage. 

I'll stick with my Shhhh! Digital Media colours once again. I'm an Atheist that leans toward Buddhism and Taoism, though I'm far from devout.

I will always treat people civilly when I'm dealing with people who give and return the same, regardless. There is no bias in that aspect of me at all. However, I will not allow myself to be abused or walked on.

Remember, it is a hate crime to replace someone else's identity in order to replace their culture, religion or gender, so if you attempt to do that with mine (or anyone else's), you're committing a hate crime. I don't switch identities with absolutely anyone and I am not a part of any team that does. In a sense, that's sacred, especially to those in a relationship rather than something forced upon a person by the community or others.

On that end, I'm not Ron Silk or Bobby with all due respect, and I don't play guitar though as I stated earlier, its a wonderful instrument in the hands of a skilled player. I am not Jamaican with all due respect, as there are a lot of people who attempt to replace my identity with that of someone named Mike who is Jamaican. See the thing about how its a hate crime to replace someone's identity in order to replace their culture, religion or gender.

One more thing. No fudge for me, thank you very much. My love interest is from South East Asia by the way and I don't like people using sexual euphemisms about her culture, unless they're members of her own culture. In that case, its up to her what she thinks about that.

I'm not a security guard and I've never worked as a security guard.

Nobody is controlling me except me and I'm Brian Joseph Johns and I'm 56 years old by the way. Don't steal from an old man.

My name and photo are listed below on the bottom of this post. I don't do the identity switching game that everyone does that seems to be related to the symbolism of the colour blue. That's one of the methods by which a cult attempt to steal a person's identity. By luring them into that definition for the colour blue. I'll stick with my own Shhhh! Digital colours as I said.

I am Brian Joseph Johns and this is Shhhh! Digital Media at or in Toronto, Ontario, Canada at 200 Sherbourne Street Suite 701 and that is the truth as of January 3, 2024 and since April 12, 2012 insofar as my residence and home office goes. If I move, I take Shhhh! Digital Media with me, but I will notify everyone in that event.

Shhhh! Digital Media is NOT located in New York city and never has been. I believe there is a person there operating under my business name but that person has no content and is an impostor. My own love interest is Southeast Asian by the way.

I've never been married in my life, and I've never fathered a child in my life.