Kanye vs Jewish Power
I swallow the red pill and break through the matrix.
I can’t believe I, a Jewish guy, was suckered into an antisemitic conspiracy theory.
There I was, typing up an opinion piece on American rapper and fashion designer Kanye West.
Back in 2005, in his hit Gold Digger, he complained women were after his wallet. Now he was airing grievances about another group of alleged gold diggers, the Jews.
Having rechristened himself Ye, he posted on social media “…when I wake up I’m going death con 3 on JEWISH PEOPLE”, a threat in the form of a pun, DEFCON being the alert system that prepares the U.S. military for war.
West feels Jews control the levers of global financial power and are screwing him over. He told a Fox News host he wished his kids would learn about the Jewish festival Hanukkah, instead of the Black American festival Kwansaa, because this would supposedly teach them about “financial engineering.” Fellow Black American entrepreneur Sean Combs, also known as Diddy, rapped him over the knuckles for wearing a White Lives Matter shirt to a fashion show. West texted back, “I'ma use you as an example to show the Jewish people that told you to call me that no one can threaten or influence me.”
What a loony tunes! What a cuckoo clock! Paranoid that Jews hold so much power. The oldest conspiracy theory in the book.
So, I’m typing away, my op-ed bouncing along nicely. Then a curve ball comes flying in, ruining the premise of my whole piece, wiping the smug from my face. A friend of West, political commentator Candance Owens, posts a screenshot of a letter. It’s from JP Morgan Chase, the largest bank in America. Headed “IMPORTANT: Closing of our banking relationship”, it tells West they’re severing ties with his sneaker business Yeezy. The letter provides no explanation as to why, but people find the timing telling, right after he criticised Jewish power. One Instagram chap tells his 100 thousand followers: “What people aren’t understanding is that the Jewish people have a ton of power… They run the banks. Don’t be surprised when he continues to get banned from everything.”
A day later Newsweek reveals Owens and West may be up to shenanigans. The letter, as posted online, has the date cropped off. Owens posted it after West had threatened to death con the Jews, giving the impression it was in response to that. But, in fact, it had been sent by the bank several weeks earlier, after West had blasted executives from JP Morgan Chase, by name, on his Instagram account, complaining about their customer service: “I moved 140 million dollars to Chase and Bill Grouse [sic.] still never put Jamie Diamon [sic.] on a call or in a meeting with me”. Jamie Dimon is CEO of JP Morgan Chase, Bill Grous, a Managing Director. West also posted a headshot, flipped upside down, of Vice Chairperson Jing Ulrich, saying her position on the board of Adidas compromised the bank’s ability to act in the interest of his sneaker business.
Hmm. This is sounding like it has less to do with the Jews and more to do with the shoes.
Nonetheless, there’s no denying powerful bankers shut him down. West argued it’s impossible to talk about the reality of this without bringing up the Jews, telling a reporter on the red carpet of a film premier: “Hey, if you call somebody out for bad business, that means you’re being antisemitic. I feel happy to have crossed the line of that idea so we can speak openly about things like getting cancelled by a bank.”
In every conspiracy theory film, there’s the moment when the protagonist (in this case me) stumbles across information that forces the scales to drop from his eyes. He breaks through the matrix and sees the world as it truly is.
I’m noodling, spooling through the JP Morgan Chase website, reading the profiles of the Jewish bankers West exposed on his Instagram. Under Managing Director Bill Grous: “Bill is active within the Greek Orthodox community and proudly holds the title of Archon of the Greek Orthodox Church.” So Grous, a Christian, is the ‘Jew’ West was convinced blocked him from getting through to the bank’s Jewish CEO Jamie Dimon. Actually, hold that thought. Turns out Dimon isn’t Jewish either, he’s another Greek Orthodox Christian. West’s oppressors aren’t bagel-chompers but a shadowy cabal of men painting Easter eggs and frying halloumi. West’s ‘Judas’, Beijing-born Jing Ulrich, also shows no signs of being a Jew. Nor, while we’re at it, was JP Morgan, the 19th Century founder of the bank.
Having swallowed the red pill, I was left with an uncomfortable question about the perniciousness of antisemitism. Forget Kanye West, why was I happy to go along with his reality, it’s the Jews?
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