Hidden Heroes — Hero #3 (Bill Hicks)

If you missed the INTRODUCTION to our Hidden Heroes series, you can read it by clicking here. Otherwise, continue below to read about Hero #3

It was just over 10 months ago.

I read a passage in a book, by an author who is undoubtedly the most controversial thinker of our time. An author that has been vilified by the media ever since he started exposing the dream world we believe to be real, in 1990.

David Icke wrote (and this caught my eye in a big way):

People can quote all the mystics and crossed-legged people they like, but this guy understood as much, if not more, than most of them…”

Fun stuff — ironic actually — coming from a guy who, well, is not too shabby himself when it comes to taking people into the unknown area of life that leads them down some pretty dark (yet truth-infused) rabbit holes.

The guy David is referring to was the most legitimate (uncensored and raw) social critic of the 1990s: a renegade thinker who tried to make people laugh, but usually ended up pissing them off, or drawing blank stares.

Well la-di-da, how ’bout that:  another guy speaking out against mediocrity, incompetency, and the proliferation of so-called leaders getting in their own way… yet, because they (the masses) associate intensity and biting language with negativity and unenlightenment, Hero #3 figuratively caused most to “run for the hills.”

When I mentioned the name Bill Hicks to Heather, she immediately responded with:

“Hey, I actually think somebody we know wrote an entire book about him!”

“Yeaaaaah, baaaaaby” I said while smiling, “now, this is getting fun. Tell me more.”

So, I heard about how our friend Ben Mack — the marketing genius credited with having sold a quarter-billion-dollars in yo-yo’s in two years — produced a Bill Hicks fan page which was turned into a book.

The site asked…

If Bill Hicks were alive today, What Would Bill Hicks Say?

I immediately told Heather that there was no need for us to be the trumpeters for Bill’s legacy, when somebody we know (and magically enough, somebody who is also endeared to marching to a different drummer) already has.

So, without further ado…..

* * * * * *

Bill Hicks is Good Energy
by Ben Mack

“We are the facilitators of our own creative evolution.” ~ Bill Hicks

Engineering our own success is the work of a hero. The late great comedian Bill Hicks was not only heroic in his self-creation, he paved the ways for others to lighten the load for more to follow…

Bill Hicks (December 16, 1961-February 26, 1994) is considered one of the most influential comedians of the 20th century. However, he is far better known in Europe and Canada than in his homeland of America.  His outspoken candor kept him from widespread fame and mass media attention. However, his legend is building.

On 1 October 1993, Bill Hicks did his twelfth gig on the David Letterman show. What the audience in the studio didn’t know was that Bill Hicks had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

Later that night, Bill Hicks became the first comedian censored from CBS’ Letterman show.

Perhaps fitting for the Ed Sullivan Theatre, where Elvis Presley was censored in 1956. But, while Presley wasn’t allowed to be shown below the waist, Hicks was made to disappear.

Ladies and gentlemen, we have censorship in America, not good energy. 🙁

To David Letterman’s ultimate panache, he took complete and utter responsibility for this mistake. David Letterman apologized to Mary Hicks, Bill’s mom here…

The New Yorker reported Letterman greeted Hicks as he sat down on the couch with, “Good set, Bill! Always nice to have you drop by with an uplifting message!” But, there was trouble in the air and Letterman knew it. Letterman went to commercial with, “Bill, enjoy answering your mail for the next few weeks.”

Back in his hotel, Bill stepped out of the shower to answer the phone.  Robert Morton, the producer for the Letterman show, explained the show was not running his set.

bill_hicks_image-smallerBill was terminally sick and knew it. He imagined his Letterman show to be his swan song… what he would be remembered for. In many ways he might have been right. This debacle brought him more attention in The United States than his previous 11 Letterman appearances combined.

In the next few days after the censorship, Bill Hicks performed three shows ranting harder than ever before. These three “post-Letterman shows” as they’ve been called, have long been thought not captured.

A few years ago, one of these three historic shows emerged… the middle show from 10/5/93, recorded by an audience member who happened to be an audio engineer. There is a brief gap in the recording at the one-hour mark when he switched tapes, but the quality is as high as can be expected from a covert recording.

Click here to hear the Bill Hicks audio, finally available more than a decade after Bill’s death <=

Bill Hicks has been popularized by such bands as TOOL and Radiohead, cartoonists Jeff Danziger and Martyn Turner; writers Neal Pollack, Robert Newman, and A.L. Kennedy; and essays by Thom Yorke of Radiohead.

As Heather and Barry introduced me, I came up with the idea of a website, WhatWouldBillHicksSay.com

It was an experiment in idealistic social engineering. We were naive enough to believe we could change the course of an election by popularizing the great humanitarian Bill Hicks and spreading the seeds of his knowledge.

Here’s how it all came together

I met Amelia Smith, a.k.a. blogger Amelia The Great, during a summer hurricane in 2004, at the Hard Rock Casino outside Tampa. Trapped, we spoke for hours about everything from philosophy to sex to “our” Iraqi invasion. I played for her a clip of Bill ranting about President Bush.

Amelia  was blown away when I told her Bill passed away 10 years earlier. I said that if more people heard Bill Hicks, we might be able to get folks to see the stupidity of what’s going on now. She said she would build the site, Joseph Matheny stepped forward with expert help and the servers from sTaRe Network.

And, so the experiment began…If Bill Hicks were alive, What would Bill Hicks Say?

Over 300,000 unique visitors came by the site, more than 300 folks entered the contest and Bush was reelected. Damn. Its not that I wanted the puppet on the Left, I just didn’t want another term with the grandchild of Satan.

“People often ask me where I stand politically, it’s not that I disagree with George Bush and his foreign policies or his economic policies, it’s that I believe he’s the child of Satan sent here to destroy the planet earth.” – Bill Hicks on Elder President Bush

Bill Hicks introduced me to Noam Chomsky, showed me how blatantly the media lied about Waco, and taught me to relax into love. If Bill were alive today, I think he would be asking how come the four planes that crashed on 9/11 were never investigated by the FCC, the ONLY plane crashes not investigated; how could a Boeing 757 only leave an 18′ hole in the side of the Pentagon? Where did the wings go? I think Bill would be asking just how sleepy Americans really are.

So my recommendation to you, dear reader, is to stop reading about my intellectual hero, gently back away from your computer. Crack open your beer and enjoy the new version of Gladiator we have on TV, its called The News, and it’s brought to you free of charge by your friendly government that promotes prescription-mind-altering-substances that are not to be mistaken for untaxed-drugs. Go back to sleep America, your government is under control.

Or, you can choose to facilitate our own creative evolution.

Bill asked that we continue to evolve ideas. WhatWouldBillHicksSay.com was an experiment to that end. Sure, I love a good Goat Boy every now and again, but what keeps his words alive are the striking truths that persevere.

Bill Hicks unabashedly said, THEY’RE FUCKING LYING TO YOU!!!

When I get dispirited that there is so much deception and corruption, I put Bill on and I hear my friend remind me that we have a lot of bright and creative people on our side… the side who believe in the power of love and good energy…

“I’m gonna share with you a vision that I had, cause I love you. And you feel it. You know all that money we spend on nuclear weapons and defense each year, trillions of dollars, correct? Instead — just play with this — if we spent that money feeding and clothing the poor of the world — and it would pay for it many times over, not one human being excluded — we can explore space together, both inner and outer, forever in peace. Thank you very much. You’ve been great, I hope you enjoyed it. Good Night.” ~ Bill Hicks

Bill Hicks closed several hundred performances with the inspirational words above. Bill’s words heartened the bright and creative during a spell when intelligence had gone out of style. Bill Hicks ignited Promethean sparks among followers whose loyalty is sometimes described as obsessive. Bill promised listeners that his ideas will, “Squeegee your third eye.”

CLEARly CHANNELing just 4 profits SUCKS.

Bill resented more people not seeing and honoring his perspective. Bill didn’t have the Noam Chomsky grace of simply accepting the level of denial he found in his lack of supporters. Bill raged against the denial, cracking open the terministic screens of some listeners, and feeding quippy phrases to those who would repeat his jokes the next day in the office. And his intelligence came through a curmudgeon tone of an unstoppable rage against the machine.

We live within the thought debris of our puritanical, tyrannical forefathers, force-fed to us primarily through television. Bill reminds us, “Watching television is like taking black spray paint to your third eye.”

Liberty and the American dream of Freedom was founded on our right to pursue happiness as we see fit.

“Here is my final point. About drugs, about alcohol, about pornography and smoking and everything else. What business is it of yours what I do, read, buy, see, say, think, who I fuck, what I take into my body – as long as I do not harm another human being on this planet?” ~ Bill Hicks

Bill was painfully aware that he had to pepper his routines with dick jokes to earn the right to speak his truth about the cost of Bush taking us into the Iraq War. Bill’s material made many people mad. And, to those who were spreading their Truth, as they saw fit, Bill heartened us by reminding us that we have bright and creative people on our side, who are constructing more harmonious ways of spreading good energy.

Despite Bill’s rage, he remained optimistic to the end, singing his comedy to ears that might hear:

“It’s just a ride and we can change it any time we want. It’s only a choice. No effort, no work, no job, no savings and money, a choice, right now, between fear and love. The eyes of fear want you to put bigger locks on your door, buy guns, close yourself off. The eyes of love instead see all of us as one.” ~ Bill Hicks

With the help of many Good Energy friends, we’re launching a New Thought experiment inspired by Bill Hicks & Mark Joyner’s Construct Zero.

We’re organizing on FaceBook =>  http://ConstructHero.com

Give us 23 seconds and we’ll help you spread Good Energy in a free LIVE LEARNING EVENT, hosted at Albany State University, starting at exactly 9:09 am and 9 seconds, on the morning of September 9, 2009, aka 9/9/9. Announcing Good Energy Day 9/9/9, empowering the world with positive thoughts.

You can get involved by Twittering #GoodEnergy or simply by sharing Bill Hicks with your friends. Thank you for your considerations, and for your Good Energy.

To Bill Hicks, you are missed, and your good energy lives on. We love you Bill. You taught many of us to Love all the people. Thank you for your good energy. Your seeds are growing.

Filed under: Hidden Heroes

8 Responses to “Hidden Heroes — Hero #3 (Bill Hicks)”

  1. I have been receiving your emails for quite some time…here in the US..when I was living in Beirut..and later in Cyprus…and I must say…now, back in the USA…that this is THE BEST most right on post I have read!

    God Bless You Bill Hicks..and Ben Mack ( I receive your emails too Ben..but this is your best stuff!) and Barry and Heather for this post!

    I am encouraged..brightened..(is that a word?) and excited at the awakening that IS!

    Thanks Guys!
    Peace, Love and Good Vibrations!!!!

    Kathreen’s last blog post..Arabic Pop…Fusion…Belly Dance

  2. What a gem! I’d never heard of Bill Hicks before – probably because I was living in Australia. Of all the newsletters and blogs I’ve subscribed to, you guys continue to deliver the best, most interesting, useful and informative content. Almost all the others copy/paste what’s been said a million times before, throw in an ad for the latest “breakthrough technique” (also about a million years old) and come back a week later with the same thing.

    It’s an amazing world full of amazing people if you scratch beneath the surface. Thanks for scratching!

    Rob’s last blog post..Psychic Oranges

  3. Wow, great article. I was surprised to see the letterman show finally airing the banned Hicks performance! About damn time! and how funny was letterman bullshittin on how it was his decision to pull that skit off the air! HA.. Yeh right… i recall watching the letterman show sometime in early 2001, and as he was coming out to do his same lame segment before he sits down, the announcer called him out like “THE REPTILLIANS PUPPET.. DAVIIDD LETTERRRRMAN..” Hmmmm..

  4. I had never heard of Bill Hicks before and I came to know about him from an article on renegade thinker. His quotes undoubtedly elated a spark within myself. He is absolutely a great renegade thinker

  5. WOW! …but what I mean is FAR OUT! What a fine article you’ve written for us.

    Everyone talks about living with “no fear” but do we really live that way?

    I imagine Bill Hicks and George Carlin are raising hell together somewhere in the universe.

    I can’t thank you enough for sharing a part of Bill’s comedic wisdom. I knew abolutely nothing of the man until I stopped here.

    Steve Deerfield’s last blog post..Prime Time for Twitter 3

  6. […] ode to Bill has already beenw written, via our Hidden Heroes #3 post, so we won’t continue to edify him […]

  7. Bill Hicks definitly was a seeder. Did watch some of his performances during last weeks, great man, great spirit he had.

    i agree, the seeds are growring

    greets from germany

  8. I am reminded of two others after reading about Bill Hicks: Lenny Bruce and Jon Stewart.

    It seems that Lenny may have inspired Bill. who in turn may have inspired Jon.

    Also, I share your concern about the “machine”, but I do believe and have found it possible to sift through the minutiae and psycho babble to pull out some truths. And, I do believe too that one will generally find what she/he is looking for. Look for truth and you will find it. Look for greed/corruption/evil and you will find it.

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