Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Go, West

In honor of Kanye West's idiotic, juvenile and completely unsurprising attention-grab at Sunday's VMAs (and because I'm still slightly out of the loop at the moment), I present to you every negative thing I've ever said about hip-hop's most famous five-year-old on this site.

From "Apparently, MTV Europe Doesn't Care About Black People Either" (Originally Published, 11.5.06)

Kanye West is a fucking idiot.

Last week, at the MTV Europe Video Music Awards, upon losing the award for Best Video to a band almost no one in the United States has ever heard of called Justice vs. Simian, Kanye stormed the stage and threw what my mother used to call a temper-tantrum -- back in the days when I referred her not as "my mother,", but rather as "Mommy." At the root of his little tirade was his belief that he, in fact, should've won the award, and that by not giving it to him, the entire MTV awards process lost credibility.

Why did Poor Widdle Kanye believe that he deserved the honor?

Let's let the baby speak for himself:

"My video cost a million-dollars! Pamela Anderson was in it! I was jumping across canyons and shit! I stood on a mountain! I flew a helicopter over Vegas! I did it to be the king of all videos and I wanted to walk home with that award!"

Where to even begin.

In the course of this little experiment of mine, I've brought up two phenomena which seem relevant right about now.

One involves the obscene sense of entitlement many celebrities seem to possess and display -- the absolutely psychotic belief that simply by virtue of who they are, they should never be denied any whim which might enter their underworked and overindulged little heads. I mentioned it in reference to the demands placed upon a small hotel staff -- one which has signed non-disclosure agreements to protect these celebrities and prevent just such childish behavior from being made public. It's an entirely different story, however, when that kind of mentality -- in all its hideous glory -- is broadcast live and around-the-globe for every living human being to see. Up next for Kanye: damage control in the form of the obligatory PR-firm-approved insincere apology -- and possibly rehab (of course).

The second phenomenon is a far more pointed one. It's the hilariously juvenile assumption by many rap stars that money directly correlates to quality, and that enough of it can buy class, acceptance, and above all, respect. Only someone who subscribes to that flawed theory could honestly believe that spending a million dollars, casting Pam Anderson(!), and flying over Vegas(!!), would translate into an award being handed out in, of all places, Denmark. Many rappers operate under exactly that faulty logic though -- that obvious excess will prove they've arrived and finally earn them a seat at the big kids table. It won't, and Baby Kanye's reaction to being snubbed only proves to the world what the detractors of his ilk have insisted all along: Rap stars can have all the money they want; they'll never be more than little children playing dress-up -- Neanderthals in nice suits.

Put simply, they'll never have an ounce of the kind of class which commands true respect.

"Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger, Deader" (Originally Published, 11.12.07)

So, Kanye West's mother -- rather than tolerate one more day of her son's petulant whining, I'd imagine -- has opted to take the easy way out and die.

This of course isn't the least bit funny.

What is mildly amusing is that Dr. Donda West, apparently not content to simply get by on her Ph.D or the very big brain behind it, may have died while undergoing -- wait for it -- cosmetic surgery.

Think of it as the hip-hop mom equivalent of your average rapper being crushed by a falling 22" spinning rim.

Can we get a moment of silence in the rap community for Dr. West?

And can we make it last for the next hundred years or so?

(Yeah, yeah, I know -- I'm going to hell. Feel free to direct your complaints here.)

"Quote of the Week (Multiple Choice Edition)" (Originally Published, 11.13.08)

"I realize that my place and position in history is that I will go down as the voice of this generation, of this decade... It's me settling into that position of just really accepting that it's one thing to say you want to do it and it's another thing to really end up being like Michael Jordan."

Who said this?

A) Kanye West

B) Kanye West

C) Kanye West

Answer: "You damn sure better know who I'm talkin' 'bout! I spent 200-million dollars puttin' this quote together. Pamela Anderson was ridin' me while I was sayin' it. I jumped the Grand Canyon durin' this interview, got-dammit!"

From "That Stupid Year: The Ten Most Ridiculous, Shameful or Generally Unfortunate People and Events of 2008" (Originally Published, 1.5.09)

3. Kanye West

Title: Voice of a Generation (Just Ask Him), Auto-Tune Afficionado, Little Boy Who Just Wants To Be Loved, Douchebag

Big Pharm Recommended Treatment: Zoloft, Stick One Ball of Cotton in Each Ear

The Facts:
Let's just say it: Kanye West isn't nearly as talented, important, or distinguished as he thinks he is. He couldn't be. It's simply impossible to be a carbon-based life form and have achieved the kind of preeminence Kanye insists he has. If he were even half the omnipotent cultural juggernaut he believes himself to be, he would've shed his physical form and morphed into a phantasmal ball of pure energy years ago. For the most part, 2008 didn't really bring anything new from Kanye that we hadn't already come to expect: There were the usual boasts about possibly being the most influential human being since Christ; the inescapable guest appearances on the records of lesser musicians (the year's nadir being his irritating cameo on the already irritating-as-hell American Boy); and of course the petulant whining about how no one shows him the adequate level of respect and everyone is out to get him because he's black. But toward the end of the year, we were treated to a new, yet not even slightly unexpected, side of Kanye: that of the self-loathing mega-star. Certainly, the death of his mother took an emotional toll on him. But the supposed result of it and a few other recent personal catastrophes -- his latest release, 808s and Heartbreak -- plays exactly the way you'd figure an "introspective" album from Kanye West would. Even at its quietest and ostensibly least obtrusive, the whole thing exudes its creator's legendarily gargantuan ego. Kanye can do self-pity; God knows we've heard it from him before. But after being asked to tolerate his narcissistic swagger for so long, it's just not very easy to feel sorry for him. And 808s, with it's ironically bombastic sadness, makes Kanye seem all the more like the kid who, even at his lowest suicide-threatening point, is just looking for attention.

Mitigating Factor: You know what almost did make me feel sorry for Kanye? His performance on Saturday Night Live a couple of weeks back -- when his Auto-Tune malfunctioned and he was left standing there onstage, looking and sounding like a really lousy karaoke act.

"By This Time Next Year, He'll Be..." Complaining about (fill in the blank).


Vermillion said...

I think Kanye is just doing it because he think everybody expects him to act like a petulant jackass now. And some folks seem to think it was possibly staged (or at least instigated) by MTV.

Think about it. He lost three times that night (once to Beyonce herself) and said nothing. But this one instance, he had to speak out? Naw, something ain't kosher, Kemosabe.

Even if Beyonce had the best video of the year (according to her 'Best Video of the Year' award, she did), expecting the VMAs to recognize that is like...well expecting the MTV Movie Awards to award anything that doesn't have sparkly vampires. It is an awards show voted on by ltttle white girls. Who the hell you think is going to win?

And that was Kanye's biggest mistake. He broke Rule #1: never ever, EEEEVVVVEEEEERRRRR mess with the little white girl. You will be asking for a whole heap of trouble.

jrm78 said...

I find the quote where Kanye compares himself to Michael Jordan to be very appropriate, considering that Jordan's HoF induction speech this weekend was panned as being petty and very dickish.

littlebitoffiesty said...

I didn't watch the show, so i am basing this on what I have read and heard discussed in my office - but this incident happened 10 MINUTES into the show! Surely he hadn't lost 3 times by then??? Maybe this picture has something to do with his behavior, yes? It's a picture of his girlfriend on the red carpet and he is hanging in the background.


Class act, asshole!

Vermillion said...

but this incident happened 10 MINUTES into the show! Surely he hadn't lost 3 times by then???

Exactly my point. He couldn't wait and go off about his greatness, he had to jump in for someone else? Or to steal from Stephen Colbert, since when has Kanye bothered to care about someone else?

Pirate Bunny said...

Kanye is an entertainer.
I am thoroughly entertained right now.
Keep up the good work, 'Ye.

kanye said...

My wife and I were watching this on the news while we were eating dinner. When he grabbed the mike out of her hand and said, "Beyonce's video was one of the greatest music videos ever! One of the greatest ever!", I pointed at the T.V. and yelled, "You lie, you lie!".

My wife almost choked to death on a green bean. Oops.

Anonymous said...

My grandma would have called it a "wall-eyed hissy", but i guess that was another generation.

Heather said...

I think he may well have put himself into a position where he won't win anything again when the voting is done by the public at large rather than an industry panel. While he's been considered a complete idiot/whiner the last times he's rushed the stage; this time he did it to a teenaged girl winning her first MTV award. Even the woman he was supposed to be "standing up for" looked mortified. There is no one, anywhere, who should justify that behavior, and certainly the general public was not amused by it. Not saying that he'll see his sales drop (even though he should) but I don't think he'll be winning any awards in the future.

I notice that his fellow rappers haven't condemned his behavior the way that several other artists have, which I think is sad. I think they should shun him just as much as everyone else. I also think that since this is obviously a habit of his they should, ya know, stop inviting him to award shows! If he's nominated and wins he can accept them from his house, or storm around his house if he loses.

All that being said, I think he needs to get his ass kicked not only musically, but possibly physically, so that it takes his swelling ego down to where it should be.

Voice of a Generation/Jesus Christ you are not.

PS - Anyone think his girlfriend looks like a scary android type thing? The fact that she doesn't look human and wears outfits that most people wouldn't be caught dead in scares me a little...

Anonymous said...

Only thing good he's done or said IMO is after Katrina when he said "president Bush doesn't care about black people" and even then he was being a jackass in how he handled it. President Obama got that right. Inner asshole much Bill Mahar?

Too bad it was off the record. The guy who leaked it hopefully will get in trouble. The press normally honors off the record comments but with Obama it seems anything is fair game.

Feel like commenting on it Chez?

Jadine said...

What Kanye did on Sunday night was the equivalent of kicking a puppy. Poor Taylor, she just stood there not sure of how to react. I would like to have seen him try that shit on Pink, she would have put her foot so far up his ass, his ass would have needed auto tune. His 'music' sucks.

Julie The Vintage Goddess said...

The President was right when he called Kanye a jackass.

I'm sure Beyonce was real happy to get her name included in his crazytrain....

Anonymous said...

Scroll down a little. Patrick Swayze. A class act, overall and a great example of courage and zest for life. Talented as well. Scroll down a little more. Melissa Etheridge- True talent, true courage and socially relevant in multiple ways.

Kanye West? Irrelevant. He has no place in my world.

Che Grovera said...

You've made the "little white girl" and "staged" arguments elsewhere, V, and I find them no more compelling now than the first time I saw them (Kanye West has no more aptitude for self-parody than that bottle he was slugging from). Analogies don't work well here since the category was "Best Female Video" (or some such nonsense) and Beyonce was the only "artist of color" nominated -- in other words, he was going to be stomping on a white girl's acceptance speech no matter what if Beyonce didn't win. I believe the operative word in your argument, though, is "little". It still would have been oafish for Kanye to pull his stunt -- staged or not -- on one of the other white 20-something nominees, but I suspect the reaction wouldn't have been nearly as intense if he'd been a douche to, say, Pink (except maybe for Pink's own reaction which is kind of fun to imagine). I daresay if this had happened to a 17-year old black girl that people of all shades would have been equally upset -- although reverse racism suggests that Kanye's balls might not have been nearly so swollen if the winner hadn't been white.

Wait an unholy minute. Did I just write an entire paragraph about the VMAs and Kanye West? Shit, I guess that zombie bite did break the skin. Somebody shoot me now...

Jeremy said...

Vermillion said "And that was Kanye's biggest mistake. He broke Rule #1: never ever, EEEEVVVVEEEEERRRRR mess with the little white girl."

Really? I thought his mistake was being an egotistical ass who thinks everyone else should kow-tow to his whims and flights of fancy (not too different from most other celebutards, but definitely the premier character study in the phenomenon of self-importance and ego.)

Anonymous said...

"And that was Kanye's biggest mistake. He broke Rule #1: never ever, EEEEVVVVEEEEERRRRR mess with the little white girl. You will be asking for a whole heap of trouble."

Actually, I think Kanye's biggest mistake was being a colossal douche. Didn't this happen early on in the show? Did he even have time to lose three times yet? He's just an attention whore and an absolute piece of shit.

I just realized he made another mistake. beyond being a colossal douche, I now know who taylor swift is where before, I'd never heard her name before.

And yes-I am *gasp* a white girl.

Anonymous said...

Can we PLEASE find a desert island somewhere and put Kanye West and Glenn Beck on it? Please?

Alex said...

And now I'll be laughing for the next week or two at the constant stream of "memes" people will be applying to every situation imaginable. I'm a little embarrassed of myself by this....

Nick said...


Jeremy said...

Anon 4:41

If there were a live feed from the desert island for the crazy, back-and-forth cries of "You hate my race, now give me back my coconut!"... well, I'm not a fan of reality TV, but that's a train wreck I might actually have to check out.

Colonel Yelgen P. Masters said...

I bet he likes fish sticks

Figgylicious said...

The second phenomenon is a far more pointed one. It's the hilariously juvenile assumption by many rap stars that money directly correlates to quality, and that enough of it can buy class, acceptance, and above all, respect.

Amen. The sad thing is that, when it comes to other rappers, that is somehow actually true. So they're constantly trying to one-up each other, just reaching new heights of idiocy in the process.

And it also holds true for most celebrities, not just rap stars. Witness Paris Hilton.

Vermillion said...

For those who have taken my comment to task:

1) The "little white girl" part was indeed a joke, my attempt to skewer the racial aspects of this event and the "voting audience" Kanye was so offended by. I do agree that if it was a little black girl, the vitriol would have been just as great. As far as him doing it to an adult, well, I can't say.

2) Yes he is a douche. He has always been. But for some weird reason, he still sells records, still gets to go to award shows, and still gets plenty of opportunities to be a jackass.

So obviously that CAN'T be his big mistake in this scenario, since it has worked so many times before. Could it be that he simply picked the wrong person to hijack? Hmmmm?

Jeremy said...

I think its more that folks are finally getting fed up with him. Beyoncé eventually getting best video of the year overall (at least from what I hear, I didn't watch the damn thing) and her giving time to Taylor Swift is, I think, what exacerbated the whole "you know, he's just really too much of a dick" explosion.

Mack said...

Let the sales speak for themselves because Swift sold 4 million records in 2008 beating out everyone else. She even beat West out in downloads only coming in second behind Rihanna. She's the kind of artist that little girls listen to and I'm okay with it. And, long after they throw out their Hannah Montana records they'll still be listening to Taylor Swift.

burke said...

Those two do have one thing in common- they both make records that somehow appeal to the masses but neither of them can sing worth a DAMN live.

Anonymous said...