As anyone reading this article surely knows, the creation of an online world of voices and noises has brought all manner of personal illusions and gripes to the fore. Whereas before the internet most of said noises were edited out, so that they never reached beyond the personal space of those who harbored them, today “personal space” ha s become public space. Thus we find ourselves invaded by locusts and wasps, cockroaches of absurdity, rodents of the false. It would be nice to9 hire a kind of cleaning lady, to dust away online’s dirt, but none is coming to your kitchen or to mine. We have to live with smells foul, sights ugly.
Which does not mean we have to stand for it. In particular, we cannot abide cockroach politics. The Republican nominee for President uses cockroach politics to turn people’s heads : we should turn his head away. He insults everyone; we should refuse to hear it. On facebook, when putridity is posted, hide it; block it; report it. When supporters of the cockroach post kaka, block them. You don’t need to read insult, look at accusation, listen to snot.
The very few — very, very few — who insist on placing toilet bowls on your brain can seem many times more numerous than they are when seen in online code print. Do not fall for it. It is true that when one person takes a dump, 1o0 people can smell it. But that does not mean that 100 people are dumping. Do not be fooled by the foul.
In the real world, where everyone has one vote and one vote only; where every life has equal life in it; where each of us decides what to do and how and when to do it — in this,. the real world, not the online facsimile of it, all of us determine what will happen : the noisy and the quiet; the stink bomb and the essence of lilac. Each of us, we all count.
One person may arrogate to himself, by kidnapping your attention, temporarily the lives of many; but it is kidnapping nonetheless. D o not let it happen to you. The rise of talk show entertainment, in which talk hosts say the most outrageous things they can, to get attention and this advertising dollars, have made exaggeration commonplace. They lie because it sells. They are hucksters merely, and so are the new bred of fake politicians who use the talk show shtick to yank your attention out of your control and into theirs. Do not let them do it.
This year’s election will not be decided by scoundrels and kidnappers. Stink will not win it, nor dumps. Most of us want to do the right thing. Most voters want to vote for the best candidate. There are at least 150,000,000 voters; how many of them are online on any day ? Any week ? Any month ? Maybe a third of them, likely less. The published polls make clear that even the most interruptive loudness barely affects most voters. As it should be.
If I may, I want to assure all of you, dear readers, that the candidate who best represents, voices, and details progress for our nation will win our votes. I fully expect her to be Hillary Clinton, who is so reviled in the talk universe because she is so accomplished and so feared by those who feel threatened by change, by progress. Mrs. Clinton is far from a perfect human being — but are we any more perfect, in our lives of stuff-happens ? We do the best we can with what we have to do it. So, for the most part, has she. Those who find Mrs. Clinton “unacceptable” need to ask : who, then, Is acceptable ? Surely not the vulgarian, her branding iron opponent.
Soon enough we will understand that what is said online tends to hyperbole, away from fact. Hyberbole is exciting, fact is boring. That’s why insult and vilification turn our heads while facts feed us a sleeping pill. What of it ? Let government be boring as it does the jobs we ask of it. Loud noise is but a grown up’s temper tantrum,. a cry from the sandbox : “I WANT MY MARBLES !” Sorry — democracy is not established to serve the whims of crybabies. Someday those of us who have fallen for cry-baby politics will realize that we’ve been cheapened, cheated, chowdered.
Do not fall for the hot pot. Lukewarm is far healthier. In politics as in pot roast.
—- Mike Freedberg / Here and Sphere