Tech Addiction, Garbage Humans, Thank God for McSweeney’s
|Amy Widdowson||Feb 9, 2018|
My darlings! This week completely got away from me, which meant I didn’t sit down and say good morning to you. Don’t worry, the world is still spinning, so there’s still more than enough to read on the internet to make you go “cry in the shower, like a normal person,” as reader Kate phrases it.
But first, I think you need this this morning:
Let’s jump right in: a standing O for conservative Amanda Carpenter, a former senior staffer to Ted Cruz, for her righteous fury and genuine outrage over the fact that a man accused of serial domestic violence was not only kept at the White House, but promoted even after West Wing leadership knew about it. Carpenter went on CNN and did not mince her words over the fact that this administration protected an abuser. It was real, it was human, and it was good. And standing Os for other conservatives like S.E. Cupp and Tim Miller who’ve recently - and consistently - dealt with this madness with clear language and hearty metaphorical WTFs over what is going on. Even Bret Stephens is asking What if Clinton Had Done All This? in response to the Russian shitshow.
And while you’re at it, you should read Carpenter’s POLITICO piece I’m a Republican. Why Is My Party Gaslighting America?
Meanwhile, Holocaust Deniers and Other Anti-Semites Making Inroads into Mainstream U.S. Politics. After it was reported that the sole Republican candidate for Illinois’s 3rd Congressional District is the former head of the American Nazi Party, the Anti-Defamation League was like “um, hey folks. This shit is real, and it’s happening alllllllll over this country.” And it’s not like we’re hearing whispers of bigotry and anti-Semitism: this guy’s website - and others like his - blame “Organized World Jewry” for perpetuating the Holocaust “lie.” So the next time someone thinks you’re overreacting if you compare some elements of the breakdown of American civil society and the rise of anti-immigrant populist rhetoric to a certain time in European history, point them to this story and tell them to go eat their hat.
Some former tech execs who helped design and market that devices that experts say you check upwards of 150 times per day have come together to call for responsible personal and social use of technology. Their organization, The Center for Human Technology, wants to prevent the societal ills caused by the “zero-sum race for our finite attention”. Their entire website is fascinating, discussing how “exponentially-growing platforms are easily exploited,” and how profit-driven companies won’t change on their own.
And finally, McSweeney’s has got you as you roll into the weekend: “Toto’s ‘Africa’” by Ernest Hemingway.
Toodles, my dearests :)