And quality matters.
When I read crap -- such as The Tweets of Stupid People or the intimate machinations of pulp media -- it's not so much that I, in turn, produce crap, but that I fall silent. There is nothing much worth repeating, rehashing, reposting, retweeting, reiterating in any way. The original iteration was failure enough.
I set out to defeat this tendency today. I grabbed some old New Yorkers, read some online articles, including George Packer's Stop the World, and Twitter: A Conversation (as the day went on, I got better with my chronologies!).
Allowing Twitter to stand in for all technology-driven communication, anyone concerned about Twitter, reading, and writing wonders along with Packer:
My question is whether Twitter and its accomplices will yield to some kind of reaction, a backlash, like, say, the reaction against urban sprawl or suburban sprawl. Back then, they sounded like reactionaries who said development is not a good in itself, we need to think about how we’re developing, and maybe there should be some limits on development.
Read more: here.
I moved on to Rolling Stone, thinking to work fast and hard at developing my hep attitudes and contemporary smarts in musical culture. My Darling Brother-Unit, Professor Grader Boob is coming here for Spring Break, after all, and we wants to be up to snuff, we does.
On that front, however, I have not just simple suspicions, but sneaking ones, as well. Grader Boob went and took on a course load of SEVEN classes, which does not bode well for his free time, or for things such as sleep and personal hygiene. His water bed having finally dried up, he has yet to purchase a new bed, and is therefore sleeping on the floor, and then daring to complain about back pain. (I thought the floor would be much better for him than the nightly tsunami that was his water bed, but it seems I am wrong.) So we are luring him onward to The Manor, deep, deep in the Tête de Hergé (très décédé, d'ailleurs) with promises of luxurious bedding, sponge baths administered by our healthy young Swedish neighbor, Helga, and culinary delights of which he has heretofore only dreamed...
Still. SEVEN classes. Maybe I will forgo the cooking of delights, and offer to bring my red pen out of retirement.
Mais je divague... I confess to rereading the 2008 article on John McCain, "The Make Believe Maverick," trying to look at old information in a new light. Not much resulted from that effort except brief muttering and foaming at the mouth. I am sure I have a pill for that but am equally sure that I cannot afford to fill the prescription.
It brought me back to the temper tantrum mode I was in after watching "my Sunday shows" yesterday. I was screaming at the television even though Rachel Maddow ably took dipshit Rep. Aaron Schock to school. I broke. The young whippersnapper had The Technique down Pat (I loved that old joke!). Hell's Bells, go here and read about it, watch the netcast, hoot and holler in your own space, time, and way.
In the meantime, here are two short clips of her training regime for gently slapping Lying Republicans on the snout:
She continues to spank the boy...
We tend to confuse real political conversations with the carefully orchestrated repetition of lies prevalent among the righteous right wing (as well as among the more knee-jerky of the left). Nothing maddens me more. As I age, the certainty that the electorate is full of Stupid People -- most are kind and use the more amenable term sheep -- has become set in stone. The Stupid People are easy targets for this type of bullshit.
Former Rep. Harold Ford Jr. got my ill-fated fist pump (I deliver one per show): "We are in the majority; We have an obligation to govern." I am not a fan of his, in particular, as he is quite the slick trickster and incestuous love-child of Wall Street, but that phrasing summed up my feelings well. As I slowly but surely head to my grave, I could give a Royal Hoot about bipartisanship.
The ever present Dick Cheney also participated in this plot to rob me of functional vocal cords. He is Beyond Scary and it would not be an overstatement were I to say that I wish he would... oh, well, you know. I don't need Halliburton Enforcers and Blackwater Ninjas showing up at my door.
I wasn't surprised to find that one of my favorite bloggers, Buckeye Surgeon, has kept his finger on the pulse (see how deftly I worked in that smooth medical reference?) of the torture issue, and Cheney, torture's greatest advocate, with his post Unabashed Torturer. It is perhaps the shortest and most emotive of what is beginning to be a regular Cheney Series. Poor Buckeye Surgeon sometimes fails to convey with clarity and can get lost in his words. Like here: "Dick Cheney is a criminal." I wish he would pick an opinion and stick with it!
To sample Buckeye's burgeoning Cheney Series, go here.
Ya, so from the McCain article to this little medical blog, my political muscles have been been working hard. It's like tossing perfectly dry split kindling onto the beginnings of a mighty bonfire -- I may well burn up, go up in smoke before the conversations are ever made meaningful, but at least I kept myself in the game.
I CAN'T HELP IT! THE TUBE IS SET TO LES JEUX-O and Bode got his bronze on! I don't think I've ever divulged my love affair with an Olympic Downhiller. Have I? Oh, so much to read, so much to say, so much to do!
See? Tear yourself away from the soaps and Twitter and Dr. Phil -- go read something. Start a freaking conversation.