The Rabbit Hole of Mainstream News
I am thinking about the most discerning of us in terms of what we choose to allow in our minds (by that I mean those most likely to be rounded up and tossed in a volcano when the full on Idiocracy takes hold). Those of us who avoid mass infotainment like CNN, Fox, MSNBC (who names a network for a terrible autoimmune disease, by that I mean Microsoft automatic updates?) “Witch!” “Literate” “Non-Litterer/Literate” “Middle School Graduate”–you know, all the categories that will get you sent down the volcanic vent in an attempt to appease the Climate Gods who for some reason are going to be really angry here in about 60 years or maybe next Tuesday. So yeah, us.
A reader and friend pointed out a hilarious clip (in that funny way that you giggle at the grim reaper when he trips on his sassy gown coming at you) that shows no less than 16 news anchors reciting (all Stepford like) “Economic factors may take some spring out of the Easter Bunny’s step this year.”…..this to prove the obvious—that they are purveyors in nonsense, yes, but not even original nonsense. They were all reciting the same lines! Some asshole with the sense of humor of an edgy member of a Drink More Orange Juice PAC writes this stuff and evidently sends it by pigeon (assuming the economic factors have not taken the flight out of the pigeon) to every incest riddled television station across this land for full contagious dispersal. It’s all pretty ridiculous since the Easter Bunny really shouldn’t get involved in economics anyway; fuck him. He had one job.
But a few measures beyond this bring a grim reality. Ask around about Putin and the Ukrainian issues…you will get an answer as pat as “Economic factors may take some spring out of the Easter Bunny’s step this year.” Maybe not if you happen upon a soon to be volcano crisp friend, but there aren’t many of us. I doubt it will happen; you will hear an amazingly similar take that conveniently agrees with the agenda of folks like Biden’s son who was placed on the board of Burisma, the area’s largest natural gas producer. Mass agreed upon spin has made its way out from all of the usual suspects. The proof is in the dye that took. The level of skill is fairly amazing on these larger than bunny issues. The disruption of a nation is now viewed as honorable, even when many of the new allies are seriously Nazis. Now that is some masterful work. It may not have been the same exact words on the script but the overall theme is regulated. Try telling someone that yes, you think Putin is a horrible human (like all the human detritus that seems to find its way up to the leadership realm), but not the black and white plastic that forms agreed upon narratives. They will not get it as there is no room for nuance.
None of this is new, but in the past I’m not really sure where a person could easily go to dig for truth, like when Kermit Roosevelt and company knocked out Mossadegh in Iran. Now this magical thing called the internet makes so much information available if you are cautious and diligent, but so few use it for that. Hilariously some net neutrality proponents started using a “don’t let them slow down your porn” theme to get more people on their side. Sad and funny (like when the grim reaper drops his scythe and looks all awkward). There is some conscious avoidance of truth going on in some groups who should know better; it’s not simply tied up diners being force fed cotton candy in every case.
Another: Try explaining that you don’t like the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare to just about anyone. They will think you are a teabagger; it’s the only option! Even which of those terms you use is supposed to reflect your slant. I tried “because we won’t do universal coverage since that would imply a concern for each other that is just not okay, not competitive and vicious enough ……..we are going to give the insurance companies a continuing line on our toil as well as our blood and tissue so they can be perversely wealthy and we can still have many dying for lack of coverage due to things like states not enhancing Medicaid.” Alas, that did not take off. The subtlety of anything beyond A or B is not really digested in this, 2014 America. And I should have shortened the definition, yes, probably that too.
The devil of it is the Bernays-esque way they have so many convinced that they are actually selecting out from real choices when this is not really the case for the overwhelming majority. This is some serious voodoo, convincing so many that they have come to conclusions and opinions on their own, though most were selected for them and crafted to fit prior. The only strife and noise allowed is the picking on of each other, those not wealthy, vying for some measure of hierarchy, just anyone to feel superior to, with a preference for anything that feels soft in this world that is supposed to be hard. A symptom of the broader disease, each subset and symptom. And the WWE quality of it certainly helps the neoliberal cause. Decent people are fighting medieval mindsets about love and equality while the oligarchy moves forward. Picketty numbers are your needed proof if you are that freaking obtuse…… that of a practical enslavement for all but a smarmy few.
Comedian Lee Camp calls billionaires hoarders who should be viewed with the same pathology as anyone collecting a metric shit-ton of anything. Certainly not people to accommodate or revere. Small scale hoarders cause concern for neighbors due to rats, stink and fires, while billionaire hoarders cause exponential harm to the planet. They are certainly more filthy than the sad old soul placed on television to make fun of for keeping urine in 4,000 squeeze honey bears after snapping when they found out Liberace was gay.
It may sound nutty when you come out and say there is a very real push to fully realize a Randian world. But that is because they have steeped us all in a self loathing, deny your own experience and intellect game. Do not say class warfare and do not refer to nebulous out-to-get-you groups; you will just sound crazy. Now suck it up and pay that 1200% increase in your college tuition, that happened over the last 30 years…. and get a Koch a sammich when you’re done with your 50 hour a week part-time job. Does it really matter how the whole thing is formed? Again the proof is in the dye that is taking.
So where to go with all of this? Yes. It is obvious that the left/right, science/religion, sane/batshit paradigm keeps us occupied with things other than Occupy, and it was a clever move on their part. Don’t engage a bit and you might find yourself chained to a vagina minder or maybe people will get buried under bibles for being some loathed group. I defer to better minds to figure out how to maneuver that problem. It’s like ignoring a bully, sometimes it works and they quit, but sometimes they really do psychopathic harm when you turn your back. So many problems.
Meanwhile those in power are destroying our climate, our land, our health. Many of the decent have simply dropped off the map, just so overwhelmed by the enormity of it. How many before have had to contemplate the annihilation of their species being possible? The thought of methane finding its way out of the arctic gives me and my limited imagination a real hard stop. I can’t imagine out of that one. So really (and this is my humble answer)……. all there is to do is to continue being assholes who don’t agree, don’t believe and continue bothering others, and yes, possibly get thrown into volcanoes at some point because it’s a worse fate to simply watch the news and hear “”Economic factors may take some spring out of the Easter Bunny’s step this year.” and nod or even worse, giggle. Let alone sit and willingly allow the fullness of it all to seep in until that undefinable spark is put out. I don’t know that it is a goal oriented worldview, more simply what might be tolerable during the years left. So we have to be kind to each other; so many out there really are out to get us. Yeah, I said it. Those of us who understand this are few and far between. And by that I mean cursed, of course.
Kathleen Wallace writes out of the US Midwest and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org