Hi Walter and Tony,
I hope you’re both doing well. Some things recently came to thought whilst looking at other websites.I was shocked by the extreme anger and the spectre of fascism in peoples posts. And its relentlessness.
Firstly the Anti-Arsenal-Arsenal (AAA) are very much present, but on closer inspection there is also the EWOB-the extreme arm of the Wenger Out Brigade (WOB).
What I mean by fascist, is anyone trying to achieve the position of being uni-polar. Its impossible, but they still try to implement this. Quite simply they don’t seem to like/see anything positive about Arsenal, and therefore aren’t supporters or fans by any definition, perhaps there’s a new definition? Its all there as evidence, anyone can read it,and there are years of this in their archives, freely available if you, quite rightly, don’t trust me.
Only their opinion counts and their ideological line is bent to everything,even if Zlatan (who is currently being praised as a new hero) had come to Arsenal would be a (insert your own word here) and that AW ruined him. The EWOB are only critical in a non-constructive manner and wish only to destroy; nobody or anything is free from their critical polemic, not just target no1 Wenger himself, except themselves and all they stand for. They can now even become famous for their viewpoint, something they could never have dreamt about years ago. All just based on a polemic, based on emotion, based on quick sensationalism.
The sad thing is,that once any counter-support is wiped out, then the game is up, and the potential fascist must find a new counter-pole, or turn in on itself. If the EWOB got their dream line up, their dream manager, if the results didn’t come in, then we would have the same situation playing out again.
So is it about people or the lust for a scenario? Are the scapegoats just cardboard figures in the minds of those trying to reach what will be another utopian failure?
Mostly there are two types of energies manifest through thought on the planet, a positive one, that cares and helps to grow, (one that nurtures life, including the helping the EWOB to survive as they grew up and that continues to do so throughout their lives) and a negative one, one that likes to destroy all in its wake, due to its inability to tolerate and acknowledge plurality and accept it.
Of course all notions of absolutism in our minds see one person’s meat as anothers poison etc. Yet we do have sensitivity of thought to create grey areas and develop compassion to carry the species along further, for a while at least. But as you said the other day, its hard to convince anyone, and in a sense we are all going at our own speeds of understanding. But then there is evidence and this goes a long way in the tempests of emotional reaction.
How many of our players have had their careers destroyed by the negativity towards them? Was it AW booing at them,or was he trying to give them a chance? How many of the EWOB have explored the root cause of jealousy of other clubs and the fear of not being good enough, and the fanatical hatred that was put onto a players, those who if they didn’t immediately become T. Henry (or another “Invincible”) in his prime years, or a Brady etc were criticised to the point they lost their confidence? Is Theo next? All humans need to grow and to grow in an atmosphere of support. Those who parents were overtly critical ruin their kids,in some way or another,in the same way that those who don’t actively guide their kids at all spoil them…
Secondly, the term AKB is always being dumped on anyone who thinks AW is OK. A bullshit term that implies, “new supporter” (ie Wenger years) who hasn’t a clue about football or anything apart from knowing the recipe for vegetarian sandwiches and reading the newspaper during the match and isn’t too passionate. I don’t particularly like these supporters any more than the EWOB do and if I felt UA was all its accused of being I would be off, as I’m sure you would be too, and you’re the editors!
I wonder if you thought it might be time to attack the mythos of the AKB? I don’t see UA as an AKB site, but a site that supports AFC first, but that means also AW at this time and the players, rather than the mercenary calling, endless coffers of other systems on offer in football. Supporting the team doesn’t mean that you become some blind sheep, just following, it means trying to support the club! Our club has seen much worse times than this.
Two FAC’s and second last year-any other time in AFC’s history and people would be celebrating. But not in these days. In fact people seemed to be really humiliated by the Liverpool game. I saw one article that said we were “thumped”. What 3-4? Liverpool did have 18 minutes of excellent play, but we came back into the game and dominated the first half-and I think Klopp was as shocked as we were. But these days are soaked in hyperbole and hollow drama. And even worse, speculation and prediction as a testament to what “will” happen. But this is bullshit and only a bet. The good old 50-50. Its a kind of waste of time pretending to be a god of some kind that can predict the future.
One thing for sure is that those who read and participate in the forums at UA and PA, all want AFC to win first. Many of the blogettas don’t want Arsenal to win, they want them to lose so Wenger will be sacked-just go online and read it. And yet UA is criticised for being ” Arsène before Arsenal!”
But is any website/blog its forum? Im not sure the AKB even exists but only in the minds of the EWOB, as some kind of fictitious enemy, a polemic to hate in order not to attack themselves.For much of their debating isn’t really debating, but a kind of group therapy, a group hatred.
But personally I think the term AKB is outdated and has morphed into a more detrimental term, to denote the false notion of superiority on the part of the EWOB.
EWOB believe that AW is depriving them of what they rightly deserve, and now even believe that they are “customers” and have certain rights. But football fans are not customers, and if they see themselves as such then they must by the nature of the game, become eventually disappointed. But they are not buying a product but an experience, one they can’t control, but one which if they supported more might yield better results.
But the EWOB reduce WC winners and EC finalists to donkeys and thieves nicking a living, while they cant even kick a ball themselves, and this is absurd. The world is always greener and somebody else’s soup always tastes better. The kind of people that extol the taste of steak and hate vegetarians, yet wouldn’t have the guts to work in an abattoir at least for any length of time. The same people who said to Joel Campbell “get out while you can” then go apoplectic now that JC is going out on loan!
The kind of people that think all teetotalers are “uncool” yet haven’t grown up with alcoholics nor spent time trapped with them. Or have been an alcoholic themselves and all the destruction and suffering they impose on themselves as well as others.
They are also ageist.Yet don’t understand that all matter, in whatever manifest form is actually old, billions of years old. Nobody is simply their age, how can they be? -“new” or “young” is the same as “old” when consider what we are made of. Perhaps in a time of such hysteria we need some wisdom?
At the moment these people can not be satisfied, their minds suffer too much.They are especially jealous of José and would love his attitude at AFC and are the kind of fans that metaphorically shoot tigers in cages,in my opinion. José at Utd and Pep at Man City scares them, but lures them too. The placebo affect of the Zlatan/Pogba transfers means some kind of talisman for Utd in their minds,despite no evidence that it will work. Well, we shall see; November and December can be tough months for footballers and August paints a pretty picture of what football might be in the fantasy sunlight at summers end. As Klopp found out at BVB not long ago.
I’m sure José is most grateful of their support, as are many visiting teams to the Emirates but it has had a detrimental affect on the club.
Perhaps neither Pep nor José could achieve what Wenger has, nurturing and building players, and creating a new stadium and working under those confines because they are a different kind of manager. OK sometimes AW gets it wrong, or things don’t work out. To be human means to make mistakes. But how many times did it work out? If Wenger is to be blamed then he also has to be praised for all he’s done and won, quite simply you cant have it both ways. Of course the same argument can be slung back as we know. I don’t know what goes on behind the scenes at AFC but I’m sure it fires many people’s minds into creating many fictitious scenarios, often the type that today’s climate nurtures.
Except the EWOB aren’t supporters. They were, maybe at one time, but not any longer. Endless vitriolic cursing at all members of the club just isn’t supporting. They don’t want “their Arsenal” back, as it was the mostly boring football of GG (nostalgically in vogue again through the rose tinted mists of memory) or ironically the Wenger revolution – which they profess to loathe. They want Pep/José and big transfers, not that that guarantees anything, to me its like the hollow lure of celebrity. Although even now, the EWOB are starting to hack into the 90s Wenger as proof he has always poor. Emotionally ranting at not having total dominance is always good ‘proof’ isn’t it? Haven’t we had enough of 20th Century thought? Where is this totality? Where is this absolutism? Even the ghosts of the past tell us to stay away from these paths,for the consequences are long lasting.
Of course if the roles were reversed how would it be for them to read and hear the vitriol they espouse? Could they take it? Do we collectively have to be so hysterical? The EWOB are also seduced by the touchline shouting and antics of Klopp and Simeone, but as a player, when you’re out there, you’re dealing with other things too much to be at one with touchline coaching.
I’ve always thought that AW wants his players to think for themselves,so they can grow,and in any case he’s often there coaching as the tv reaction shot shows.But in a world of toxic rhetoric flung here and there everyday, who wants to people thinking for themselves?
The EWOB don’t see that for years you allowed a different opinion on UA as long as it could be backed by evidence, that all could come on to UA – and of course they could also put their emotional opinions on the forum as countless arguments in the archives can testify. But try going onto an EWOB site and make some apologetic for the AW side and see what response you get and are called – even if you offer evidence. Its pubescent in many ways. But it’s possible to grow beyond all that frothing hysteria?
Personally I feel that most UAers are long time AFC supporters who were there before AW, before GG and way beyond that, the EWOB are actually the ones who are new fans, and that’s one reason they want AW out, to have a new time as its all they’ve known. And like it or not, UA supports the club, team and manager. Hardly a crime is it? Now we ask who wants the team to lose and who doesn’t?
Then comes the burning Bunyanisation of the “Invincibles”, their shadow looms long, a team that could do no wrong in the minds of the EWOB. Of course most of them would have been young/kids etc when they were around and even if not, the Invincibles have become a false bench mark, and when someone like Henry makes a statement speculating that people might not want to come to Arsenal, its suddenly gospel truth, rather than just an opinion in the vast sea of opinions! Pundits aren’t any more an authority any more than I am. But when the TV agenda is sensationalism, then what can we expect? But the idea that fans aren’t influenced by the media is again a bit short-sighted; of course they are. Look at the memes that have become urban myths, straight from the pundits mouth.
The EWOB also align themselves with every pieces of fiction that the newspapers conjure up and believe it too. To believe sports writers during the transfer windows is basically letting yourself get dragged down the rabbit hole of fantasy. No? Then please bring forth the evidence that Arsène was “dithering” or Arsenal are “idle” in the market. I notice the word “dithering” has imposed itself on the impressionable, the same as “4th place”, “he’s like a new signing” or the crap about being a “specialist in failure”etc. And what about the new meme floating around “shambles”? Burnt into fans minds as is evident on plenty of blogs post Sunday.
I think most of what AW says after games or at press conferences is politics,and yet they think its the truth. Somethings are of course interesting and relevant, but the man knows that whatever he says can be twisted and turned, but also he will protect the club and team at all cost.Simple politics!
One final note of transfers and the EWOB. They want every great player in the world to replace the current team,even though a) they are unavailable at other clubs b) AFC couldn’t afford to pay them all. But that doesn’t mean anything does it, as the child screams for what it wants, regardless, as it always must have. But would that team work as a unit?
I was also disturbed by a recent quote I read on Piers Morgan twitter account. That there is “first” and all else is a failure. This is quite myopic to the point of blind in its understanding of the nature of reality and again smells of fascism (and sport has had a long relationship with fascism in all its forms over the years).
The world is a relative place, all must have a relationship with another to exist and operate. Without all participants, “first” means “last” or even worse – just a negation, a position of sterility. Plus when all is relative, we as spectators laugh at those who come last in the Olympics or other sporting events, yet those laughing aren’t even in the twinkle of an eye for selection to such events, so what’s so funny?
All has to fit together,in order to create the false idea of being the “best” and even then its only due to certain prisms of thought being put onto or projected by us, and whether we agree or not. If you don’t agree, go to an old flea market and see the old medals from forgotten campaigns given to forgotten soldiers. Medals that don’t mean anything to anyone except a few collectors…
Lastly on this point, if “first” is all that counts, then team GB came second in the Olympics…see it’s utter horse manure, and we see a relative pattern of incredible complexity appearing before our eyes. But how deeply is the idea of “winner” and “loser” etched into peoples minds and what will be the fallout of this in the future?
Then we have to all agree that these “events ” mean something. Yet it’s easy to switch to the absurd and see the fact that sport is pretty daft in relation to some things that are going on in our world. Much ado about nothing. Us being sucked into a ludicrous entertainment that has been destroyed by money. If the prices were cheaper for tickets, and less money in the game, how would it be? Will people still want to be footballers in ten years time in the storms of negativity and over analysis?
Perhaps the EWOB are sadly stuck in a kind of frightened childhood trauma, frightened of the idea of being left behind or not dominating or winning, to a point that even when it occurs, (or when the data says AFC are doing better than they think) it’s still not enough,and the neighbours world is always much better? It’s a shame that this has permeated our society to such a degree, so much egged on by those who only wish to exploit ordinary people. Haven’t we seen all this before?
Well until the next time, keep up the great work. COYG!
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- 24 August 1991: Aston Villa 3 Arsenal 1. Alan Smith scored. As league champions Arsenal had opened the season with two defeats and a draw – scoring three and letting in seven.