National politics has robbed us of our selves.
Matt, I thought by now you would have lost the obsession you seem to have with inserting Trump as the cause and bad guy in your essays. Still wandering the wilderness, are you?
Look, this all started decades ago with the politically correct movement/idea/cause, whatever you want to call it. It predated Trump by many years. I saw the PC crap for what it was and the insidious corrosive effect it would have on the country. Do you really think constantly trying to make people feel guilty was going to work out for the good? Do you really?
Trump comes along and identifies the PC corruption for what it was and a lot of people sided with him. Most importantly, he gave them something to rally around. Whether or not they liked him or approved of his antics was a minor issue because they were bloody sick and tired of being told they were racist or misogynist or nazis or hey, fill in the blank.
The left, the woke, whoever the fuck they are, were the genesis to all this, When are you going to see that, Matt? What blinds you to it?
At any rate, stop with the Trump bashing- it is a dead end, for he is just one person and on his way out. 75 million will replace him.
Regarding the lack of humor regarding Trump, that happened all at once, among all the comedians, as if an urgent memo went out to everyone, and all obeyed.
I remember before Trump won, Jimmy Fallon would good naturedly put on genuinely funny Trump masks, smile when mocking Trump, banter with Trump - with no apparent hate. Just his normal, playful self.
Then, like flipping a switch, Fallon started mocking Trump in ways that were serious, and seemingly forcing himself not to smile, careful not to even utter anything remotely humorous. Not even something that was both cutting *and* funny. Nope. Too serious to even joke. Insults, OK. Actual laughs? Anything to humanize? Totally unacceptable.
Word had been put out, that Trump was not to be treated as a person, but the enemy. From that point on, it was never about being funny, only about reinforcing Trump as the enemy.
Why in the fuck is it that even when I log in under my paid subscription account, I can't access the whole article? Why does substack create such a shit user experience?
Having lived for more than 20 years all together in China, from the mid-1980s to severa years ago, I’ve seen what total politicization of all family, social, and economic life can do. It can take more than a generation to just begin to eradicate, and the scars are Always there just under the surface. I sincerely hope we don’t follow a similar path, but from what I see coming out of social media and the mainstream media and fringe media, I’m far from optimistic.
I spent an evening scrolling through the killed woman's twitter, Ashli Babbit from California. I was struck by how much of her feed bespoke grievance for lost and thwarted livelihoods of working people precipitated by lockdowns, by COVID Hypocrisies (Newsom-French Laundry etc.), by tech and media censorship. She retweeted several appeals to pardon Assange and Snowden. She retweeted praise of AOC and Rashida Tlaib for raising concerns regarding the rushed into law 5,593 page “Covid-relief” bill that contains “a provision that some tax experts call a $200 billion giveaway to the rich.”(NYT) There is common ground to retreat to and rebuild on, but you can’t reach crazy with crazy. #Russiagate #BlueAnon
Just remember long after Trump and Biden are gone, the thing that will live on is your inability to publicly share your thoughts (if they are outside approved thinking) as well as hear diversity of opinions. If you don’t find that something we can all rally around then there is nothing holding us all together except geography.
What are people going to do without this guy? I feel like CNN and MSNBC, at least, will have to keep up a steady stream of stories about the threat of Trump in 2024 or how he's still trying to inspire right wing violence. I have no idea what else they could do to keep these ratings up. The people who hate him really are oblivious to how much they love news about him, even (especially?) trivial bullshit like dumb tweets or the potential political futures of his family members.
Matt, these are not removed national issues that stand separate from our lives and should not get down to being family matters.
Should I be tolerant of someone who refuses to wear a mask, proclaims his/her liberty and stands next to me as COVID runs wild? Should I be tolerant of someone walking into a store with a gun openly displayed, not out of need but to openly force the issue? Should I be tolerant of people using concealed carry to be out in public vigilant for threats whether or not their perception of one is real? Should I be tolerant of people like Kyle Rittenhouse who appoint themselves protectors of property authorized on their own authority to give capital punishment for looting (which he alone would decide), something that the law with all its force on behalf of society does not condone? Should I excuse "Stand Your Ground" laws that effectively tell a person with a gun not to take the advice all police give, to flee if fear is felt, but to open fire knowing that the law will assume your fear is all the counts, that you may take the life of another regardless of the validity of the threat you perceive? Courts have a hard time determining what happens in shootings, but now it is simplified to the fear in the mind of a shooter. The emotion of the moment leaves justice far behind.
This is insanity, a resentment driven effort that imagines criminals getting what they deserve from an armed you and me and does not see fellow citizens as being the victims of it, refusing to admit that a "good guy" can become a "bad guy" and instantly. And in the face of this complete disregard for human life of fellow Americans there is the obsession to step directly into a woman's life, with no regard for personal freedom to preserve a fetus because life is sacred!
I urge everyone to read the book <i>Strangers in Their Own Land</i> in which a sociologist goes to rural Louisiana to try to cross the divide between left and right. Her attempt is noble but what is found in her interviews of people who are happy to open their thoughts to her is resentment so intense it causes blindness. It is of people excusing corporations that have devastated their immediate environment while going on the attack against regulation of those industries whose toxic waste is all around them, as they freely admit. Corporations couldn't possibly have wanted toxic spills to happen, so are the fall guys, while demonic liberals (they don't know any personally) are the real enemy.
So much has been won since the Enlightenment and we face a emotional rage driven attempt to overthrow it. Ashli Babbit a perfect example with demons in her head she was out to destroy. The only way to justice is to deal with individuals and situations one at a time. It can be frustrating and time consuming and unsatisfying to self-righteousness but it is the only way to proceed.
(Cont p 3/3)
In the left’s hyperbolic 4+ yr war on the very damaged man, the unpresidential wild card that is Trump, I went from horror over his election to seeing the Dems and their many media allies as increasingly troubling too, and in some ways, more so than Trump or his followers. This is especially unsettling since they seem to have been joined by just about every other realm of our society in acting out some form of TDS that is not helpful to our society (no mass derangement is!). This coalescing includes big tech & business, social media, sports, entertainment, education-academia, etc. They appear to have amassed nationwide, and their combined threads are blanketing us to the point of suffocation- censoring, shaming and dictating our thoughts, our speech, our lives. Punish, shun, erase. What comes after talk crimes? Thought crimes?
The anti Trumpers’ unofficial free pass to behave terribly seems to be this commonly held belief they’re fighting the good fight against a formidable monster, so anything goes - fight a dragon with fire, or even nukes! Then once he’s vanquished, we just keep ignoring his 74 million voters, as always, and we’ll all be just fine - we’ll easily put down our swords and stop the insanity. Biden & normalcy!
I think Matt agrees this is getting out of hand, the heavy hand of Left-wing woke is warping our roll pretty dangerously, so why tread so lightly and so minimally on it in this piece?
(I know Matt criticizes msnbc cnn NYT etc in other articles, but that criticism - and of the left overall- belongs more robustly in this context, as well)
Nothing to see here that hasn't been going on for centuries now. We all have a responsibility to stay engaged with our own sanity just as we always have. We're just slowly waking up to the fact that the human species hasn't really evolved enough emotionally or psychologically compared to our technological achievements.
The incentives of our society in the west have brought about the casino like investor class that has to commoditize every aspect of everyone's life in order to support their gambling addiction that is falsely labeled as "investment".
Once everything is a commodity nothing can be sacred anymore. It's our hell and the "investment" crowds heaven at this point.
Now we are in a place where the economy orders society. Enjoy it if you can because I doubt it will last long before the drone strikes start here in the "homeland" and are just as frequent as they are everywhere else the elite see as either a "developing market" or a "reinvestment" in "democracy".
The most important thing to remember is not to let other people choose your enemies for you like the poor young lady that allowed herself to get so twisted up by the media that she ended up getting shot for her illusion surrounding rights she never really had in the first place.
Patriotism is the virtue of the viscous according to Oscar Wilde.
I wouldn't risk my life for any country(cult) that allowed for the existence of elites to even exist, let alone exist above the law like the US does.
Yeah. The right can get as wound-up as the left. You think there is a difference between her zone and those folks in Seattle?
Also. Your language disparages her for “allegedly” being charged 169% on her loan, and write as if she’s (1) lying, and (2) as if you don’t think lenders couldn’t possibly be owed more than the original loan was for, when just a couple weeks ago you wrote the sob story about that person that had a huge debt owed for student loans and how wrong it is that taxpayers didn’t want to bail out students and just look at how unfair it all is.
I’d like for you to write consistently instead of letting your bleeding heart guide you into writing biased articles.
Speaking of cults, has anyone noticed that the current fad of de-personing or whatever we call it is identical to the Scientologist practice of "fair play"? This combination of professional and even personal shunning coupled with doxxing and active unrelenting attempts to destroy someone that can and has driven some to suicide. If I didn't know better, I would think David Miscavage is in charge of our country.
I am not sure if you read these but I wanted to thank you. Your reporting is hilarious, trustworthy, and honest. Ever since you broke the news of the Russiagate media hoax I've been looking in to articles on more mainstream media sites and noticing when "anonymous sources" especially "anonymous source(s) in or retired from intelligence agencies.
These new reports about the supposedly massive threat of white supremacists is FULL of these sources. Much like the period just after 9 /11they are using peoples fears, which they themselves have ratcheted up with aid from the usual media suspects, to sell us on War on Terror Part 2. I don't know if it's scarier to see spooks and military personnel hiding behind anonymity or seeing them be perfectly honest about it as Rep. Melissa Slotkin (ex CIA) or the revived Gen. Stanley McChristal have been. At least now I see the tricks thanks to your work!
(Cont. P 2/3)
This piece feels a bit lopsided and unambitious. The Left (the side I always supported, but lately find very problematic) is getting more authoritarian (scarier) by the day. Yet Matt puts far more attention onto the predictable & widely retread criticisms of right wing media, citing the typically decried Fox/Limbaugh/et al, while barely mentioning offenders on the left. I’m not trying to protect Fox or the right so much as I’m wondering, especially at this point in time when the left is furiously popping so many kernels of kooky and kreepy korn (no apologies for alliteration), why, in this piece, he gives so little attention to the failings of our highly flawed, Dem allied MSM. (The majority of media, most watched, who have their addicts & cultists too, even among the old folks)
Also, he makes some (sloppy?) errors, like on that Helena Duke incident, saying she’s “... an 18-year-old who publicly turned in her own parents for attending the Capitol riot and punching a guard in the face”
Unless I’m tripping, google very clearly tells us it was the guard who punched the Mom (in her blood soaked face). And was Mom “attending the Capitol riot”, as Matt says? Seems not. The incident happened the night before, Jan 5th, when her group was out on the street and, as the mom claims, looking for a restaurant. Not quite sure what the play by play was that ended in violence, but it is clear they were not at the “Capitol riots”.
And then there’s this:
“Trump-haters screaming in psychic agony” videos became so common that the MAGA crowd began to circulate them as porn, not much unlike the way the Ashlii Babbitt tirades are being devoured by liberal audiences. Of course, MAGA voyeurs watched through derisive laughter, while the latter group was just indignant and horrified.
That is an odd pairing because when we watch Ashlii Babbitt hyperventilate, we do so knowing, even having seen, she’d been shot dead, which is quite sobering, whereas the screaming lefties are not at risk and very much alive post video. I hope he’s being sarcastic when he ascribes “derisive laughter” to MAGAs reaction to anti Trump screamers, but “indignant and horrified” to the left as they view Babbitt’s meltdown in her car. It’s not entirely clear that he is being sarcastic, but if he isn’t, he ought to be.
Very sad story of Ashlii.
The irony in the content of this article - Do not let politics subsume your personality - and the comments from people completely adhered to the politics of the day is not lost on this reader. What's more in these commentary diatribes, there's always a peculiar effort to convert Matt to the very banality he's calling out. Why? To score another convert? Pump the brakes, we've already identified a pernicious persuasive radicalism that's sweeping through heavy users of (social) media content - why choose to ignore it at your own risk? The costs of playing this game are not being evaluated by the competitors - win, or lose; playing the game means your country loses.
My New Years revolution was to erase all social media off my phone, and keep it off for the duration of the year. It's going great, I highly recommend it.
From Dave Pell’s “NextDraft”:
If anything positive came out of the Capitol insurrection, it's that many Americans finally woke up to the threat of Trumpism, his fascist language, his authoritarian tendencies, and more important, the rising threat of violent White Supremacist groups. The people who have been warning you about Trumpism and these trends for several years were not hysterical, they were not liberal snowflakes, they were not rabid partisans. They were people like my parents who had seen this show before and tried to tell us what we were looking at. And, they were right. That reality is certainly a factor in why Trump is leaving office with a 29% approval rating. I sure as hell didn't want NextDraft to become all politics all the time. You think you're sick of Trump news? Imagine how I feel. And believe me, what some perceived as the anti-Trump messaging resulted in hundreds of angry emails and thousands of unsubscribes. But I'd rather tell the truth to one person than half the truth to a million. Truth is a bias I'm proud to have. The media was never too hard on Trump. They were too easy on him.