Social Media Sinkholes

Tried to create a new Twitter account last night, but the Twitter gods wouldn’t let me. They banned me for “hateful conduct” which was total bullshit.

I was arguing with some aggressive asshole who kept including me in his, her, or its replies. I used profanity, she didn’t. She reported me. That was that.

It still bothers me because it doesn’t even remotely represent what actually happened.

Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram are the three biggest and most important social media websites, and they are about the most piss-poor run little sewer holes you can think of. Arbitrary, profit-driven, lax with personal data, each site has become an important piece of modern living, yet each is privately owned, and they can ban whomever they want, for any reason they want.

That’s fucking dangerous. It perfectly reflects what’s wrong with western capitalism. When the rich control the very things that everybody needs to get by in this world, then they will always control it to their benefit. Those three behemoths should be broken up somehow, but their size and centralized paradigms serve the powers that be, so get used to it.

I try to look at it as a blessing in disguise. Those sites can suck a lot of time out of our lives.

For about five years, I spent a lot of time and made a concerted effort to create an interesting, artistic, and politically enlightened Twitter account.

I never broke the 2000 follower wall.

But if I were an apolitical teenage girl posting pictures of my dirty panties, I probably would have had 50,000 followers within weeks.

That’s the reality of our world.

I know this sounds paranoid, but I don’t think that Twitter is what it appears to be. I don’t think it treats everybody the same. Quite a few conservative low-lifes have learned how to game the system. They openly taunt and harass liberals, but they do it in such a way that it’s always just within the rules.

And Jack Dorsey (owns Twitter) is a Trump-loving, low-life, jack-off prick.

But he’s rich, so everybody acts like he’s a fucking genius.

If I ever hit the big time and publish my stories, I’ll try to get back on Twitter again, because in this day and age its almost a necessity. I’ll be a hell of a lot more careful, but I will never forgive those cocksuckers for painting me as a hateful person when all I did was cuss in the midst of an online argument.

Hey @Jack – suck on this, you piece of shit.

Writers & Booze

The two go hand-in-hand: writing and drinking. Though not an absolute necessity, there are very few truly great writers who didn’t drink.

I feel guilty about it, sometimes, because once in a while I overdo it and end up face-down on the bathroom floor. Then my roommate walks in with her arms crossed and chastises me.

“I don’t like this. I don’t like this at all,” she says.

“Woman! How do you think I feel?!!” I didn’t do this on purpose, and it hardly ever happens, but sometimes it just happens. Mistakes happen.

It’s called life.

At times I envy people who don’t drink, but then there are other times where I hardly consider them human. They’ve never learned to let go and cut loose. They’ve never allowed themselves to be someone else.

Sure, on the whole, they’re more successful, the non-drinkers. And I respect that, on a certain level.

It’s just that what passes for “success” is, more often than not, merely an example of convenient conformity.

“Oh, wow, look. The square peg found a square hole. How impressive.”

So I know it’s an ongoing battle. Win some, lose some. But I also know that drinking truly does help my writing, when done with forethought and a sense of strategy.

I just wish I could market myself with as much certainty.

Someday…someday soon….

Optimists Live Better Lives

Turns out that optimists truly are more successful and happy than pessimists.

I’m not sure that anybody knows exactly why, but the data bears it out.

Here are two of the main rules of thumb to follow if you want to lead a happy, optimistic life:

  1. Externalize fault, and Internalize success – I know that at first glance, that sounds like a cop-out, but the fact is, it works. If something goes wrong, it’s somebody else’s fault. When something goes right, it’s because you’re just so awesome.
  2. Avoid words like “Always” or “Never” – Make whatever is happening, especially the problematic periods, fleeting transitory events. Keep an ear open to your inner dialogue, and avoid saying things like “I always do” such and such, or “I never get” whatever. By avoiding the absolutes, we can give our lives a brighter perspective.

There are a few other keys to optimism, more of which can be found here, but those are the main points.

Try to remember that as long as you have time in this world, you still have time to change.

The Rich are the Enemy

If it’s not the first time I’ve said this, it won’t be the last: the rich are the enemy. The plain and simple fact is that the rich are far too rich, and there are far too few of them.

Literally, a few thousand people own and control almost all of the world, either directly or indirectly. Virtually nothing can be accomplished without their support and approval. This is not an exaggeration. This is a plain, simple, odious fact.

It’s the rich who stand in the way of protecting our world. They know that any meaningful effort to counter climate change will result in a loss of their revenue, and despite already having more money than half the world combined, they refuse to permit that.

Why do Fox News and other right-wing propaganda sites get away with all of the lies and outrageous claims that they make? It’s because the rich like it that way. Fox News is speaking on behalf of rich people.

Fox News is saying what rich people think.

How can Trump—a man so obviously and pathetically unfit for office—get away with all of the verifiable lies that he makes on a daily basis? Because he’s giving the rich exactly what they want, which is more money, which translates into even more power.

And as long as Trump keeps giving the rich what they want, the rich will support him completely.

War? Crashed economy? Ecological disaster? Doesn’t matter. All that matters is profit. Their profit.

It should come as no surprise to anyone that any and all efforts to make the world a better place will be met with harsh opposition from the rich.

Even the most modest of proposals to make the lives of the working class better will be labeled as communism.

That’s bad. That’s a hard hill to climb. But the truly pathetic thing is that if anyone dares to espouse this observation in public, some conservative yutz will accuse that person of “envy.”

And that’s what we’re up against, and it doesn’t look good. On the one hand, the grotesque perfidy of a few thousand billionaires and multi-millionaires who don’t have enough money, and on the other hand, hundreds of millions of brain-washed working class conservatives who are hopelessly servile to the powers that be.

Fox News vs. Saving Grace

Three dirty lying millionaires.

Fox News has to be the most despicable example of propaganda in the world today. Surely there is no source of right-wing propaganda so widely disseminated. Hate TV, USA.

Every day, with almost every show, they bend over backwards to demonize liberals. With each passing year the preposterous perversion of logic and reality just gets worse.

For instance, according to Fox News, it’s the liberals who are truly the party of intolerance, not the God-fearing Republicans who have a loyal membership comprised of 90% rich white men…and 10% poor, bigoted, working-class idiots.

The worst offenders are, by far, the three mainstays of their nightly “news” roundup: Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity, and Laura Ingraham. The mental acrobatics they perform in order to prove their specious arguments are truly breath-taking.

If you have even the faintest ability to reason, it is literally painful to watch more than five minutes of any of those shows.

As often as not, the broadcast is filled with nothing but outright lies, but on occasion they’ll address an issue, a current event, being careful to frame it as perfectly as possible so that it serves their agenda. So it’s not a lie, per se, but rather a carefully cherry-picked display of the “truth.”

The best example I can think of is the recent coverage of a Trump political rally in northern Florida. Every other news station showed the part where the crowd started chanting “Send her back!” and “Shoot them!” while Trump just stood there at the podium and smiled.

But if you were watching Fox News, you’d notice that they carefully edited and removed those scenes from their coverage. According to Fox, the rally was a rousing display of patriotic loyalty, a success story that only Trump’s haters would dare malign.

Fox News is evil, and I say that without a trace of hyperbole. The ruination of America is being lead by Fox News and the morons who watch it.

Thankfully there are saving graces, one of which I just recently discovered, the popular sitcom Modern Family.

At the risk of stating the obvious, it really is a funny-assed little show. It’s become my favorite go-to when the idiocy of the world, lead by Fox News, becomes too much to bear.

It took me a while to get to know the characters, and I still don’t like the “loose, jerky” camera style (though I hardly notice it now)…but it’s just quirky, and lovable, and fun and every little story has a ring of truth to it without being too preachy.

I’m saying this in an effort to give my little life a bit more balance, because it’s easy to be subsumed by the glaring negativity that dominates our times. Trump is a truly dangerous man, and his supporters are either themselves dangerous or just too dumb to recognize the obvious. More the latter than the fore, I fear.

So to the half-dozen people who bother to read these words, I hope you have a little “saving grace” in your life, something that helps you get past the bullshit.

If there was ever a time when we needed it, that time is now.

Newspeak America

About six Mitch McConnell followers, teenage boys, groped and choked a life-sized cardboard cutout of AOC, and Mitch McConnell laughed it off.

A Texas politician tweeted three names of Trump’s major political supporters, and the cons are acting as if it were a hate crime.

It’s beyond belief.

PTSD, Anxiety, & Survivor’s Guilt

Had a panic attack today. Not the first time, but the first in a long time. Always seems to strike out of the blue.

Incapacitated, I did next to nothing and spent half the day hiding in bed.

Better, now. The day is lost, but maybe I can make up some ground tomorrow. It’s so strange. I had planned on getting a lot done today, but I woke up just flat-out feeling wrong, and that feeling lasted until around four or five in the afternoon, when I had a can of beer and a bite to eat.

Words fall short of an accurate description, but what I felt today was something akin to a sense of impending doom.

Nobody understands. I wouldn’t doubt if most people thought I was faking it. I can almost feel them rolling their eyes at me, behind my back. Hell, sometimes I can see them doing it right to my face.

Unless people can see some external sign of damage or harm, most of them will simply assume that a person is faking a panic attack, or a back injury, or the limp of a trick knee. Or menstrual cramps, too, I’d imagine….

Officially, my PTSD is based on a bloody, traumatic, deadly event that happened to me when I was thirteen. Unofficially, it’s based on a life pockmarked with hostility, violence, and several years of gross injustice from which I had no escape.

So they broke me. I’m a broken man, and nobody cares. I keep hoping that somehow I’ll put myself back together and make something of my life, or what I’ve left of it…but it just doesn’t seem to be working.

They say that optimistic people do better in life than pessimists.

Here’s to optimism.

Big Things, Little Things

My cousin died recently. Word is that she killed herself. Don’t know much more about it than that. I’m afraid we’re pretty estranged from that branch of the family. I haven’t seen her or her family in about thirty years, so I’d feel odd inserting myself into their lives.

My mind’s a blank. I don’t even know how to feel. She was a pretty good kid at heart. A little ornery, but not a mean bone in her body. She had three kids. I guess it wasn’t her first attempt. I hope her soul has found peace.

Add to that, the never-ending political bullshit, and the recent mass shootings that the Republicans won’t do anything about and…and the asshole gun nuts trying to convince us that it’s all perfectly normal and all we need are even more guns…from this perspective, the world can look pretty dark for an old poet.

Thankfully, I recently discovered the television show Modern Family. I don’t watch much television, and I frankly don’t care for shows like that, usually, but I started watching this recently and so far, it’s made life a little easier to bear.

I don’t know what it means, life. I don’t see how we can live one life and never live again. That makes no sense to me. What would be the point?

Because a pointless universe would be pure hell. Chaos would win every time. Our whole reason to exist is, at the very least, to give a little meaning to the world, somehow. To gain an insight, to share it, to just be there, as a human being.

I hope her soul finds a better place to be. She deserves it.

Corporate Control of Dem Debates

Not gonna watch. I know they’ll be gunning for Sanders and Warren, in that order. Lots of “gotcha” questions and an effort to stir up a fight.

We have public broadcasting. There’s no goddamn reason why CNN should make a bundle of money airing our debates. There’s no fucking reason why they should be in control of the moderators and the basic tone of the discourse.

Ten people are going to be on that stage forced to compete for two-hours of air time that will be about 25% to 30% commercials. It’s absurd, and I can’t believe nobody talks about it. At best, one lucky candidate might get 15 minutes of air time to talk about all of the policies that need to be addressed. Some candidates will be lucky if they get two minutes of time.

I’m sick to death of the corporate manipulation that we see constantly in our politics. Corporate manipulation is effectively an effort by rich people to put their thumbs on the scales, because when we speak of the rich and of corporations, we are talking about the same thing.

I know this for a fact: whoever the corporations like the most (Biden & Buttigieg as of this writing) then those are the candidates that we the people should avoid like the plague.

Conversely, the candidates most despised by the corporate wing (Sanders & Warren) are the most deserving of our support.