Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All

Saturday, August 26, 2017

A Recommendation

I believe I started reading back in 2004, following its analyses of the polls and other vicissitudes of the John Kerry campaign to unseat the war criminal and incompetent oaf George W. Bush. I continued to read it in subsequent elections, both presidential and mid-term, and for the most part found its analyses congenial, illuminating and admirably concise. In the past, the site has seemed to shut down a bit between silly seasons, but the ever-earlier, verging-on-permanent election cycle has by now pressed the site into incessant publication. In the era of Trump, I have found that their daily roundup of the news is by now one of the better ones out there. (Jezebel's Barf Bag is another, more aptly named if not quite so useful, compendium)

I am one who considers the Trump administration and GOP's gerrymandered/disenfranchised control of Congress an aspirational and now-incipient authoritarian formation in what has long been at best an only notionally representative white-supremacist corporate-military plutocracy. Therefore, I think it is absolutely essential that fair-minded civic-spirited people of good will be ferociously aware of current events (the consolidation of the police state, the amplification of hate, the deregulatory disruption, the disenfranchisement of voters, the demolition of professional norms) and ever prepared to protest abuses and provide support for the vulnerable in the face of the advances of this evil-minded death-dealing movement.

I also understand how soul-destroying it is to slog the swamp of pointless stupid disgusting daily atrocities in Trump's America. Just dwelling deep in the morass is ultimately demoralizing and I think risks disempowering us, rendering us indifferent to real outrages as we drown in them. Nobody needs further confirmation that Donald Trump is a racist sexist brainless bigot utterly unfit for the Presidency, nobody has been the least bit surprised by any of his recent atrocities or their ongoing enablement by the hucksters and hypocrites of the Republican Party.

Nothing matters but mass protest to make these killer clowns think twice about doing their worst (which will only sometimes be successful, and which has so far been the only thing that has sometimes been successful) before mid-term elections give progressive people the chance to vote Republicans out of office, to truly limit the damage Trump and Republican ideologues can do, and perhaps open the door to the impeachment of Trump for his violations of the emoluments clause (among other potentially impeachable offenses, like abusing the executive pardon power to obstruct justice).

Striking the balance between remaining informed but not burning out is not easy in the best of times, and for now I recommend concise overviews of the daily atrocities like the one at and just then focus on activist sites in your areas of keenest interest. I follow a few sites where prison abolitionists, immigration lawyers, queer feminists and environmental/food justice activists/scholars write about the things worrying and inspiring them most on a day to day basis -- and of course I still follow critics of the so-called "tech sector" and its "technoprogressive" thought-leaders futurological-apologists and other assorted reactionary robocultic advertorial fantasists. Your balance will differ. But balanced we must be, if we are going to make it for as long as it will take to turn the tide.

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