Saying the conditions of his detention amount to "torture," Anders Breivik has submitted a list of 12 demands for reform and has threatened to go on a hunger strike if said demands are not met. Along with additional postage and better conditions for his daily walk, Breivik also contends that he is entitled to a PlayStation 3 console and the right to choose his own games.
Breivik, who murdered 77 people (mostly teenagers) in 2011, is currently being forced to endure the use of a PS2, it appears.
This is not the first time that Breivik has alerted us to the horrific and inhumane conditions to which Norway subjects him. In 2012, as you may recall, he sent a 27-page manifesto complaining that his cell was "poorly decorated," the coffee was not to his liking, and he did not have enough butter. Among other things. See "'I Am Not Allowed Moisturizer,' Complains Mass Murderer," Lowering the Bar (Nov. 9, 2012). If you wept for him at that time, then these latest revelations will make tears shoot out of your eyeballs.
Breivik's new letter does seek an end to daily physical searches, and it is fathomable that this requirement (if there is one) might be unreasonable if he is not in daily contact with the general population. But nothing else in the report is remotely like torture.
He does claim that his chair is "painful," but it isn't clear why. Seems unlikely that Norway uses the kind with spikes on it. Breivik would prefer a sofa or armchair, he says. Certainly, sir—how about this comfortable recliner, and may we bring you your pipe and slippers now or would a snifter of brandy be more to sir's liking?
It may be that he's just sitting for too long while playing games on—brace yourselves—the PlayStation 2 that is the only videogame technology to which his brutal captors will allow him access. Not only must he endure the limitations of a sixth-generation, 14-year-old console system with graphics that labor along at a cruel 147 MHz, he can't even choose his own games. "Other inmates have access to adult games," he lamented, "while I only have the right to play less interesting kids [sic] games." The worst example, he wrote, "is 'Rayman Revolution,' a game aimed at three year olds."
What are we to make of this claim?
Rayman Revolution is the PS2 adaptation of Rayman 2: The Great Escape, released in 1999. In it, Rayman escapes from the Robo-Pirates' prison, after which The Teensies open the Hall of Doors for him so he can travel the world collecting Yellow Lums and searching for the four masks of Polokus, the spirit being who is the only force able to defeat the Robo-Pirates. Basically, the usual bullshit. The game is appropriate for ages 8 and above, so that part of Breivik's claim is bogus. And although released some time ago, it was consistently praised and appears on many "best games of all time" lists. So if the Norwegians intended to torture Breivik this way, it seems unlikely that they would give him access to this title, which actually should offer an enjoyable experience FOR THE MASS MURDERER WHO IS NOW COMPLAINING BECAUSE THE VIDEO GAMES HE IS GIVEN IN PRISON ARE NOT HIS FAVORITES.
But maybe the Norwegians have something even more diabolical in store. It's possible that they are setting him up for a long legal battle over access to the PS3, and only after eventually providing him with one will they disclose that there is now a PS4 and he can't have one.
I realize that's not much of a thing right now, since Battlefield 4 crashes kind of a lot, but at the time hopefully it will be.