One of [my] personal pet peeves, something which comes up at panel type things, is when people blame "the masses" for their ignorance, or something similar. The masses hate George Bush and hate this war and don't really think the appearance of the word "fuck" in a college newspaper deserves endless media attention. They've arrived at these views largely all by themselves, despite the bizarro reality conveyed by our elite press.
It is well known that majorities have long supported progressive positions on health care, the environment, drug liberalization, and many other things as well. It's true that for much of my life majorities weren't too supportive of queers like me, but I've always trusted them to show sense in the face of mass exposure to the non-threatening and usually dull as dishwater realities of queerness -- just as I've always assumed it would be among timid media "elites" and Washingtonian muckety-mucks that the dumb-dumb atrocity of the closet and all it represents would linger endlessly on. I was right to think so.
When I contemplate the very basic atrocities that seem to me to need redress -- curtailing the release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, implementing universal healthcare, installing steeply progressive taxes, ending war profiteering and shuffling surreally skewed militarist budgetary priorities, demolishing the legal fiction of corporate personhood, constraining intellectual property and widening access to information, providing ample free easily-accessed clean water to everybody on earth, drug legalization, ending capital punishment, making informed consensual acts like prostitution and suicide legal, supporting a world court war-criminals, environmental poisoners, human-traffickers and the like actually fear, implementing a planetary non-mean-tested basic income guarantee -- I despair of the possibility of nudging the vapid "elite" press or the "credentialed" experts or the nervous "professional" handlers or the rich ruthless fucks of our "aristocracy of merit" a single inch in the direction of any change for the better, even should change emancipate the world and failure to change reduce the world to a septic sewer. But when I contemplate the so-called "masses" whose ignorance, stupidity, superficiality, and emotionalism I should presumably fear as an official member of the overeducated effete elite pinko commie queer secular humanities set… well, I must admit, I feel quite sure I can count on their sense incomparably more, that I can trust their integrity, imagination, collective intelligence, good humor, capacity for tolerance, and tolerance for change incomparably more than that of our incumbent and especially our moneyed elites.
It is among my deepest, most fervent hopes that emerging peer-to-peer forms of creative expressivity, networked media, journalism, collaboration, research and publication, fund-raising, political organizing will give permanent voice to the actual plurality of stakeholders in the world, unleash the unprecedented intelligence and imagination of collaboration, and smash utterly the dumbass slaughterhouse of elitism and incumbency. It is on p2p democracy, more than anything else, that I am pinning my hopes for a world on the brink of perishing from the smug-self-certainty of military "elites" and the blind blanketing destructive greed of corporate "elites."