To the defense of Trump

Now that the clock ticks on and we gradually eke toward the US election mid-terms, it is becoming more and more clear that the media is having less and less interest in doing its job of reporting facts. Frankly, it appears that their modus operandi has gone from being self-appointed bastions of truth and cornerstones of democracy into “Get Trump”.

This is where we, as citizens, need to be astute in what we consume, and recognise the media’s operations. Like any decent investigator, we must always ask ourselves, “Is our source of information reliable, and do they have an interest in selling us a skewed version of events?”

Because, in all likelihood, they have an interest. If it hasn’t been obvious so far, then I fear people haven’t been paying attention. Look at any news story that features Trump versus another person, and the photo of Trump’s target is one showing a face of stoicism, whereas Trumps face is contorted into some stupid way to make it look like he’s trying to shit out a tree stump.

If the media were truly interested in impartial reporting, they wouldn’t need to stoop to such tactics, and they would trust that the reader could formulate their own solutions.

But that’s a big fat nope, and now we have media doing all they can to smear Trump in the hope that the midterm elections will rout Republicans from the House and Senate so that impeachment proceedings can commence.

Because that’s the end game. Impeachment and removal from office.

So, why does that bother me? Despite all my recent postings here, I am not a Trump supporter.

I have long held a belief that politics had been polluted by ultra-wealthy and well-connected types who knew how to say the right things in order to get in. They were hyper-polished but ultimately milquetoast individuals who said nothing committal and spoke in roundabouts and fog. They weren’t motivated by actual serving of the people, but rather by their legacy.

They wanted to rule, and to rule for as long as they could. To stay in power, they just needed to say the right things and avoid the bad things – not necessarily do what is right.

I felt that politics needed a good flush out. It needed someone willing to do what they felt was right, and not what was popular by polls. For all the flaws of Trump – and there are many – I can honestly say with some certainty that he’s doing what he thinks is right and not what is popular. He does what he thinks will take the US where he wants it to go, and not what he thinks will get him reelected.

And regardless of whether you think he’s wrong (and he can be very wrong), you cannot fault him for not following through.

I don’t want politicians motivated by reelection. I want them motivated by doing what they think is right – yes, even if i disagree with them.

Because I prefer someone doing something because it’s their idea, not because they think their idea will get them what they want.

And because in Trump I see this person, and because I see a malicious monolith of entrenched power (in the media and established politicians) seemingly conspiring to have Trump thrown out on the most specious of reasons, it feels like a fight between two parties; the ultra powerful and wealthy individuals of an ultra upper class who believe they were born to rule versus, well, the people.

So, I don’t defend Trump because I like him. I defend him because he won the election and because those forces that are trying to remove him shouldn’t be so powerful in the first place. Politicians serve the people. The people spoke. The politicians should listen and try again next election instead of trying to throw out the peoples’ choice.

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The Activist Journalist

The media have truly lost their way. This is not a new revelation on my part, because I have long loathed the media way before the phrase “fake news” was birthed out the mouth of a failed presidential candidate. Yes, I am a media-hater-hipster.

There’s always the sensationalism. There’s always the reinforcement of Mean World Syndrome despite us living in one of the most peaceful times in this planet’s history. There’s even clickbait. These things are only incidental to the recent rise of the most heinous of creatures to ever proclaim themselves a “vital part of a democracy”.

The activist journalist.

The activist journalist does not seek to report the facts, trusting their audience to take information from their story and then formulate their own understanding of the world. No, the activist journalist holds no high regard for their audience. The activist journalist must tell the audience what to think. Don’t you know? It’s not enough to provide the story from which the dear reader can walk away feeling informed. No, it is the activist journalist’s role – nay duty – to tell you how you think, or how other faceless people think.

Oh, to think that they feel that lecturing people is the best way to convince them. It clearly worked on them during the years they spent at the Sunday School their parents forced them to attend.

This past week saw a number of photos circulated of the atrocious conditions that children of unlawful immigrants must endure. Activist journalists posted the images far and wide, condemning the US administration for the horrific turmoil inflicted upon the innocent.

Except the photos were from the Obama-era Administration.

Activist journalists, upon realising the “mistake”, quickly deleted tweets, and offered weak platitudes to minimise the story.

This is why activist journalists are a problem. If they were truly about the craft of journalism, and wanted to be true agents of good in a democracy, the photos would not need to be removed and explained away. Why?

Because the photos could have lead to more important questions to be asked. Questions such as, “Is this still occurring?”

Because that is far more important than who was at the helm during the time that the atrocities did occur.

The paving-over of the story because it paints the activist journalist’s preferred team in a bad light reveals the truly dark side of the activist journalist. For all the noise they would make about childrens’ suffering, the deletion of the tweets and photos shows that they actually do not care about these childrens’ suffering.

They only cared when they thought it politically beneficial to care. They only care about lives when they can leverage said lives and use them to forward their cause.

That is not what I want from an industry that is apparently a cornerstone of a good democracy. That is truly evil; an evil that would use lives of children to promote their team before they discard them to the wastebin of history, forever forgotten.

This is why media is currently a blight, and needs a strong clean out, preferably with the coarsest of brooms that leaves a groove in the dirt so deep that no future journalist would want to ever be associated with such cynical, callous and truly despicable practises.

Radical

In this dichotomous world in which we live, in where concession is akin to weakness, and where our own beliefs are sacrosanct, it is impossible to find any meaningful debate. Yes, yes, this is a sticking point of this blog, but when the problem is this dire, it bears repeating.

Wherever I see the embers of debate begin, I usually see someone with a fire hose with a label come running in to quash any hopes of warmth.

“Lefty rubbish” they caw.

“Right wing nut job” they baw.

And then everyone gets on the back foot and defends their philosophy, as opposed to making a point. So, let’s do the moderate thing, and sit on the fence to piss everyone off:

Both left and right ideologies, if played out to their radical extreme, are equally shithouse. At least to my layman eyes. I do not process to be an expert on the subject, but this is how I view things.

Communism sounds nice by philosophy, but when played out to its extreme (as history has evidenced) results in a two-tiered caste system that starves millions and strips away incentive to excel. Also cronyism, nepotism and collusion.

Capitalism sounds nice by philosophy, but when played out to its (globalist) extreme (as evidenced by current day) results in a wealth divide, enslavement of people in distant countries, and incentivises greed. Also cronyism, nepotism and collusion.

This is not to say that either system cannot work. I just think they fall apart when taken to a radical extreme. Smaller communities might benefit from such systems, but when the goal mutates into a pursuit of utopia, then other motivations creep in that are beyond the good of the community.

So, now that I’ve pissed off everyone, like the good little moderate I am, I’ll outline that I’ve long lamented that we seem to focus on politics on national levels, rather than dealing with our immediate communities. By interacting with those closest to us, we stand to make actual tangible change that is literally closer to home.

Trump golfing a lot is an issue, sure, but I fail to see how addressing that benefits anyone at a local level.

Maybe you’ll find that change can be achieved when you’re not trying to push a radical idea across too broad an area. Better you community first and maybe you’ll see others mimicking your example.

A return, of sorts

After the fallout of what happened in Charlottesville, I noped out, considering the topic of conversation of this blog being far too chaotic and volatile to handle. I still believe this is the case, but I still cannot shake the idea that there’s a game going on, and its players are largely the media, the political establishment, and the useful idiots on the ground.

I see the people lying by omission, the bad framings of reports to skew the reader a certain way, manipulations and games, all for the pursuit of power.

It would be entertaining if the game itself didn’t adversely affect regular people. That’s the twisted tragedy of all this; people with power will play these games to improve their numbers and keep their wealth coming in, packaging up these stories in the media like a lunch box with a label, prime for the public to focus upon, ultimately distracted from the real theft occurring.

The bread and circuses have spread to the chambers of the powerful, and yet they still dictate what we can and cannot see, despite pledging transparency.

I noped out before, but I feel I can still chip in, even if my corner of the internet gets literally zero traffic. This is a fault of mine, as I am terrible at marketing. It would be arrogant of me to think my teeny ramblings on a wordpress site would be subject to the tweaking and channeling that Google et al perform to swerve eyes away from wrong-think.

All these things seem to be conservatives complaining about being shunned or unpersoned, and I find myself agreeing with them. And I’m not even a fucking conservative. I hate that discourse is now this false dichotomy of us and them. Arguments devolve into “you’re one of them” as opposed to “I don’t believe that because x…”

Disagreement is not akin to the worst of humanity.

Arbiters of “debate-worthy”

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could simply discount all kinds of dissent with a simple hand wave and a scoff? Wouldn’t it be grand if any upstart could be mocked and ridiculed until submission?

Whelp, welcome to today.

Following from the recent mess that was the Google Memo (and I am sure that given two weeks, no one will even recall what this was about), I have seen a number of responses that say something along the lines of:

Not all opinions are created equal.

What a lovely, haughty sentiment. We can’t have the commoners thinking that they have any critical thinking skills, can we? We shouldn’t even engage with their arguments because to do so would be to legitimise their concerns – which are unequal.

I cannot fathom a more arrogant approach to any topic, let alone one concerning politics. It’s an attitude that not only smacks of arrogance, but also treats the population at large as incapable of thought. The notion that people broadly cannot discern honest debate from trolls and ignorance does not give people (or at least the people who matter) enough credit.

When I see someone say something ignorant, I can easily discount them. However to have someone else tell me to discount someone is another barrel of shit. If someone says something that is clearly wrong and have no backing evidence for their views – or they speak in roundabouts and broad sweeps – then I will know the weight of their argument.

For instance, someone says, “Men are physically stronger than women, therefore they are better at x”. I discount this argument because it offers nothing. No rational link. No definite conclusion. The argument lacks nuance and does not account for outliers, broad spectrums of people, and also personal drive. The statements proves nothing and I reject it. I don’t need someone to tell me to reject it.

However, present a more nuanced argument with more considered statements that account for variables, and supplies links to research, then I would review their argument differently. I may disagree with the argument, but I will consider it. If someone has offered enough effort and time to submit something, then I should do a courtesy to review it.

Back to the infamous Google Memo, the author offers a lengthy explanation, makes no rash and blunt conclusions, attempts to attach some research and even offers alternative solutions to the current trajectory, and I see people in certain circles state (and I paraphrase), “The argument does not warrant acknowledgement. It is an unequal opinion. To engage with it would be to legitimise it. So we should mock and bury it.”

This is not how to win people to your side. If something is argued simply, then it can be dismissed simply. It would take no effort and no energy.

If you definitely have truth on your side, then you should fear no debate.

Hollywood: the Useful Idiots

I remember when George W Bush was the President of the United States. Oh lordy how the globe laughed. Wasn’t he such a buffoon? I am pretty sure David Letterman owes much of his career to good ol’ Dubya, and Will Ferrell may not have received as much attention if not for his impression of Bush the Second.

That sure was a fun eight years. While in the midst of an actual war in the aftermath of a terrorist attack, Hollywood, the music industry et al went all out in the mockery of George W Bush. There were some protests over the wars he started, sure, but the role of Hollywood and the celebrities within the cluster were to mock him.

Now we have Trump as the President. Sure, a Republican in the White House was always going to be mocked, but to my eyes, it feels like Hollywood cannot do anything without having to point out what a colossal evil-doer Trump is – and he hasn’t started any wars yet.

I’m seeing anti-Trump sentiment popping up in entertainment news, and on the Ellen DeGeneres show – places of light entertainment where politics probably have very little place outside the election cycle.

Don’t get me wrong, I feel that Trump is worthy of mock and scorn, but I have an unshakeable feeling that there is an exaggerated and concerted effort to denigrate Trump that isn’t what I’d consider “organic”. It’s almost like there’s a genuine attempt to ensure that the people don’t do again what they did in November 2016.

Trump was an outsider. He wasn’t meant to get anywhere near the Presidency. He was meant to just disappear after the primaries. Except he didn’t.

I have a hypothesis that both sides of the political divide in US politics are simply two sides of a rotten coin. Every four years they allow the commoners to have a say in who leads the country, but despite whoever they elect, the agenda is the same. Sure the parties might differ slightly, but I cannot shake the feeling that the elections are simply a bit of theatre to make the people believe they have power.

Watch the below video for an opinion that closely aligns with my own.

Hollywood seems to be on board in following the lead of the theatrical production, and are railing against Trump in the most visible way possible. Now, I don’t suggest that Hollywood is part of the sinister cabal that ultimately controls the President by threatening to “JFK” the person – much like I wrote about Katy Perry, I think Hollywood stars genuinely believe in their cause.

But they are simply Useful Idiots. They are simply influential (ie popular) people who will follow and promote the cause of those truly in power, unthinkingly parroting the party line, either willingly through their own sense of righteousness, or because they fear that their career will end if they don’t say the right words, or espouse the right ideology.

I am wary of using the term “they”. The word “they” is often employed by some conspiracy theorists when they refer to “the Establishment” or “the Illuminati” or “the Elites”. I think it’s good to keep in mind that if you use the term “They” then you should be able to name one person. To some, this might be George Soros, or The Rothschilds. Either way, I am going to simply use “They” because this is only a hypothesis I have.

Trump wasn’t meant to be in power, and I think the election cycle has already started to ensure that Trump doesn’t win again in 2020. “They” are using their Useful Idiots to convince the new generation of voters coming up to not vote for Trump, and/or convince those who did vote Trump that they made a mistake.

When every Hollywood star and likeable personality tells you that you made a bad choice, it’s hard to not think that you’re on the outer. It’s hard to not think you’re a part of the right side. It’s the tactic of isolating people and showing them the right way.

To this, I assure you that you should vote for whomever you want. Don’t be dictated to by anyone – even me – as to who wins your vote. Don’t let the Useful Idiots make you feel bad. They don’t care about you. They care about their cause.

You do you. Forget the Idiots.

When does a celebrity dive in?

The world of being a Creator must be a crazy one. Having never held any success with my attempts to create, I can only assume that the world beyond my zeroed hit counter is incredibly enlightening. Given how many people seem to assume that audience size is tantamount to truthfulness, I can only assume that the moment someone’s numbers explode, a beam of light descends from the clouds, and people are given the enlightenment that many buddhists suffer and meditate for a lifetime to achieve.

Because successful people seem to be given a lot of airtime for their, frankly, stupid views.

It’s easy to pick a target and fire at them with criticism, but frankly it’s pointless. For one, they won’t listen. For two, Youtube exists and has a large number of visible people flailing their arms about with righteous indignation. WordPress is not the best place for such rampant delusions of relevance.

But I were to cast my mind into the faint possibility that I could be somehow notorious for something. At what point do I stop revelling in my own self-congratulations, look out upon a crowd of people and think to myself, “I know better than these people and they should listen to me”?

Let’s bypass the irony of me typing these words on a blog where I seemingly profess to know all, and position myself into the shoes of an actor or singer. I know nothing much about the world, but I am decent at pretending to be other people, or pitching my voice at a resonance that is not ear-savaging. I can perform. I can please a room of people.

But why would I think my opinions on sensitive subjects such as politics and religion are warranted, insightful, or even correct? Moreover, why would I expect anyone to give more weight to my words over, say, Jill the Plumber from Arizona? I have just as much exposure to politics as Jill does, yet I feel I should include my voice to the exclusion of others. Why would I think that?

When Katy Perry demands for love (or “resistance“), or Leonardo DiCaprio preaches for climate change (not that I oppose their opinions on the subjects), why should we nod along with them and pledge money to their cause celebre? Why wouldn’t we listen to actual scientists, or psychologists instead? Is it because they aren’t as pretty as Katy or Leo?

Part of me can understand these celebrities, though. I mean, what would I do if I had nothing to worry about? What would drive me if I reached the top of my industry, had enough wealth to ensure my family’s well-being for generations, and enough food in the fridge for the most sacrilicious orgies that would make Caligula blush?

I’d worry about immortality, or legacy. What better way to ensure that – at least in these mortal bodies – than by enshrining our place in history as “That Person Who Stopped Bad Thing”.

Of course, most prominent historical figures stood up in the face of great danger, engaged their bravery gland, and stood tall. However, in the instance of Katy and Leo, they stand up in the face of popular consensus, have engaged their preaching gland and deliver the most milquetoast of opinions that challenge precisely no one.