To the point in question: Should not the Kool-id meme be restricted to the likes of the president’s cmpign bck in ’08, or for the one underwy from the folks Feeling the Berning, or for the current Trump kyfbe even?
Surely the generl tone from the Hills coterie does not fit the generic mood of tht of Kool-id drinkers, especilly given the cleer & present contrst w/ tht from the Witnesses for the Sentor from Vermont, who echo the requisite enthusism inherent to true believers… much more so thn the vile, violent would-be reelism coming out of Cmp Clinton?
Well, the point of my c@rtoon, obvious even now I think in the still imge, is tht the potion-peddler is emerging from the cmpign logo. The timing of the emergence is key: Concurrent to the @nti-Trump mood’s build-up, more & more converts come to creed Clinton. Despite the neophytes’ insistence they’re only counter-Trump, if they’re buying into the notion he must be stopped first & foremost, then they’re tipping tht pitcher. Holding their noses they must, yet still swllowing the poison.
…and now back to our regularly scheduled programming (and the extra effort it entails on my part)…
Personal Preferences: How small you like your Sundae?
But, if you’re normal, your interest is not really new ideas. The creepy thing is, you have more interest in common with the targeted advertisements that land in your lap or, if you’re the ultra-modern happy consumer, find in your hand.
We think we’re inundated with information, overwhelmed by it, and in a way we are, have always been. But converse to the concept of overwhelming modern media, the technological methods of information distribution & communication more mirror the time-tested human method of filtering out what isn’t of interest, or makes us uncomfortable.
The distressing realities really are in plain sight, in spite of all the sophistication, neurological and algorithmic, no outside manipulation by evil conspirators is needed to hide them. We hide them ourselves with our personal preferences. The most radically discerning and least obstinate of us — despite even the most open-minded intake — would nevertheless require a random act of fate to stumble upon an unusual bit of information, a nugget of truth, the possible existence of which we’ve never even considered considering.
While outside manipulation most certainly exists, we conspire against ourselves to keep ourselves narrow-minded. Our new sophisticated tech and method of control merely mirror that tact.
Let’s say media is a fish. Let’s say, further, that a certain fellow’s central thesis is that the fish has a certain kind of skeletal structure. You hear this elucidated and summarized; it sounds quite simple enough. Are you interested in finding out what that structure is? You ask someone vaguely familiar with this fellow’s thesis, and she tells you that it’s really quite complicated, too much so, in fact, for the skeletal structure of the fish to be what the fellow says it is.
Then, by some bizarre twist of fate, you hear someone else talking about the theory of the fish’s structure and they say that it is really quite simple, that the structure of the skeleton is easy to observe and understand when given the basic introduction.
So you bite into the fish, as it were, and are a convert. You flock to every discussion about this fellow & his theory and gravitate toward anything reminiscent and keep a keen eye out for what the fellow himself might have to say about the modern state of affairs.
You adjust your scope to the true skeletal structure of the fish. Occasionally, when you venture into old territory and a mainstream presentation of the latest goings on, you find yourself frustrated that the middling consumer cannot see the fish as you do. But then a friend reminds you that even with your inquiring mind, you had required serendipity and instruction. Of course.
So you take it upon yourself to patiently educate everyone you encounter, referencing rants to the choir you’d heard in places you once had no idea existed.
Finally, you are so queued into this stuff that one day you happen upon a reference highlighting that somebody is badmouthing your professor hero.
Wait ’til you see what happens next.
There are spectra of outlook — thought political, philosophical, otherwise scientific — you will never catch wind of, though they’re there, in massive number, both in tight-to-loose-knit groupings, or bits never having breathed the same air.
This is not “every conceivable idea or position” because there are so many more than that, conceivable positions as they are, regulated by fabricated dichotomies: left and right, religious and scientific, public and private.
These minds cannot conceive of a reality beyond yin and yang.
To illustrate, let’s say there is a university professor who is mostly unknown to the larger population, more known to the world of media criticism and still more known to the world of political left-ishivism. Now, media critics largely consider this professor to be radical, and when they go on television programs and his name comes up, it is in that context. The tv hosts rarely recognize his name, though they have plenty of colleagues who have had him on their programs.
As a matter of fact, this professor has turned up on enough mainstream regional and national media outlets and appeared enough in the press, both as subject and author, that there is no dearth of media consumer who might believe him somewhat of a celebrity, a famous figure, sometimes making a relative qualification, sometimes not. Yet the professor is relatively unknown.
This obscurity alone would make it easy to criticize his marginalized philosophy on the function of the corporate media, if the philosophy were anything but demonstrably not present in everyday media discourse.
Applying a specific version of media criticism to those who would champion the same sounds reasonable, yet it offends those for whom it should represent truth. Instead of respectfully applying the idea, we are told, in not very clearly defined terms, that it is the icon that must be respected, not the idea.
They are not set to seek the truth, but those who might have told it.
Much criticism of criticism takes place within the self-constraints of the left-right paradigm. Smears of “leftier than thou” are tossed about as a way to somehow explain the flaw of a viewpoint without so much as observing the point of view or taking on the idea.
Comparatives are really quite unhelpful as attributes, unless your goal is limited thinking. At least the word “purist” as a put-down has an implicit connotation, unlike the view from the left or the right. It says that you’re obstinate, unwilling to compromise on a particular issue or set of beliefs. But in another sense, one’s purist is another’s person with principles. Not that the latter hasn’t been used mockingly when convenient.
If you haven’t been exposed to thought in a spectrum foreign to your own, you can’t count on discovering where to begin. You’d have as great a chance at understanding what is meant by the following inside joke:
“You can’t swing a dead cat without striking a soldier saving a small child.”
When the idea in that sentence rises to the level of notional – upon hearing that it is a reference to a statue honoring a military figure – comprehension still confronts an entire life’s conditioning that filters it out.
Now here might be a place for me to cite a specific case related to the previous explicative example, but I wonder, still, what it would matter. How much it challenges one’s thinking depends on one’s thinking at all in this section of the spectrum. Before that can happen, one must in all likelihood have been exposed to the idea in order to think it. Then, after that’s sunk in, to apply that same critical analysis to the subsequent thinking of one of the people who helped originate the analysis.
So here I reveal the commentary on the statue with a link to the link, not as centrally focused on the professor of the new fish skeleton, in favor of getting there by way of an analysis of a brand of pop.
For at the end of the day, you can lead a horse to water, but that won’t make it recognize “a clear eyed, even radical, assessment of all that’s wrong in the world coexisting with acquiescence in oligarch-approved methods for putting things right, no matter how often and resoundingly these methods fail”.
But who knows? If you get through those, maybe it would be better to get the next point by passing the professor.
That’s three links in today’s Sunday Paper, slightly aged but relevant, if you are so inclined.