Sunday, January 10, 2010

Budd Dwyer

I got a link to the FreshJive homepage a few days ago from a friend of mine, and have since been stumbling on a lot of stuff (mostly video) related to the 1987 on-air suicide of Pennsylvania politician Budd Dwyer. Why would a clothing company post this on their website? Well aside from the founder being labeled by his fans as "one of the...most original in streetwear, never sacrificing his creativity in fear of what his fans or buyers might say" (really? is this creativity?), it seems to stem from the company's decision to remove brand labels/logos from even its own clothing, a move many see as equivalent to suicide. Or maybe as Dwyer has proven, and perhaps FreshJive is banking on, it's a step toward infamy.

Anyway, I remember when this happened when I was a kid (didn't see it live, but heard about it from news...WARNING it's extremely graphic). So I got to investigating and it seems Budd's rightful place in American history is pretty contentious. Wikipedia and many other sources have him as a corrupt politician who was saving himself from prison while also securing state-sponsored life insurance (in the neighborhood of $1.3 million) for his family. But there are just as many sites who have him pegged as a martyr-hero of sorts, who sacrificed himself to make the ultimate statement about backwards government and the twisted American judicial system.

Regardless, it is without a doubt simultaneously one of the bravest and stupidist and most narcissistic and insanely sensationalist (the last two are probably most fitting for FreshJive) f*cked up things ever. I mean, he called a press conference for this!!! Talk about the ultimate f*ck you.

Again, prepare yourself if you're going to watch this.

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