Watching the antics at the GOP debate this past week, I realized something: the Comment Section has won; it’s taken over public discourse. I wrote recently about how the interweb, especially Twitter, has embedded into modern life. Now I realize just how true that is!
Think about this: Republican candidates for one of the highest and most important public offices in the world — the so-called Leader of the Free World — are exchanging third-grade insults about sweating and pant wetting.
Surely fart jokes are just a drop in the polls away.
I’ve discovered that sufficient quantities of beer can make all this hysterically funny, but during those rare sober moments I can only weep into my empty beer glass. Is there really any doubt now (as I’ve been
saying ranting for a long time) that things have gone way downhill?
You’ve done this to yourself, America. (And I gotta be honest: I really hate it. It’s turned the world into somewhere I don’t really want to be.) It was up to you, the users of the internet public square, to either elevate it or to turn it into a sewer.
Exhibits A, B, & C: Facebook, YouTube, Twitter.
Twitter, which has consumed sports and news reporting, and which has been a key weapon in politics, is essentially just a comment section!
This is the downside of vox populi, the way the lowest common denominator drags down the culture bar (to the point where cultured people need a bar). Behavior once perceived as reflecting on low character we now embrace as normal.
The nasty emotions and language of comment sections has invaded the body politic and infected the social mind.
Again (because this can’t be over-emphasized): Republican candidates for the Presidency are exchanging third-grade insults about sweating and pant wetting.
This is astonishing. No wonder Lindsey Graham said, on record (which just proves the underlying point), that his party had gone “bat-shit crazy.”
[Or, if you prefer a more PG-13 version, “bat-poop bonkers” has a nice ring to it.]
Which indeed they have gone crazy bonkers, and that’s a whole other worm can (or leech jar, depending on your preferred fishing bait).
Only now are they really waking up to how badly the wheels have fallen off the GOP wagon.
What we’re seeing here is a confluence of several things: social media (in many cases better called anti-social media) has changed the public discourse; social issues have severely divided and polarized people; anti-intellectualism has eroded critical analysis (almost to the vanishing point); and a sense of entitlement and broken promises has created an angry win-at-all-costs electorate.
All of which their leading candidate (he who must not be named) has leveraged to great advantage.
Think about the language of the comment section: disrespect is rampant; polarization is the standard; shallow pettiness is common; and outright meanness isn’t unusual.
Think about how every online magazine, newspaper, and blog site, all have comment sections. Sports sites have them, too.
Pretty much any major site on the web has a comment section these days.
Along with [Like] (and sometimes [Dislike]) buttons, or rate-this stars, or thumbs up or down.
They all want to know what we think. In the simplest possible terms. Keep it to 140 characters or people will TL;DR you.
As for me, I’ll just keep pouring the tears out of my beer glass and refilling it with laughing serum. It really does make everything they say pretty funny.
Meanwhile, in the real world… or is it?
I’m not sure anymore, because here I sit in Minnesota, on February 27th, and I’ve got the windows open because it’s over 60 degrees (Fahrenheit).
Did I mention the part about Minnesota? And February?
The weather continues to be as crazy as the politics, and the irony there is that the politics is part of the reason the weather is so crazy.
Not only has the GOP field sunk to the level of third-grade playground spite, but those same examples of Republicanism deny the climate is even changing.
Well, I’ve got the pictures to prove it.
Year after year, really, but the weather this year is really something. This 60-degree day is a definite spike, but we’ve been having temps in the 40s for a couple of weeks now.
And there I was standing outside (in the aforementioned state on the aforementioned date) in my bare feet!
Which did get a little cold, but not painfully so (especially as the sun warmed up the ground a bit).
And here I am inside now enjoying the sunshine and (relatively) warm breeze blowing all the winter dry furnace air out.
Plus, there’s a baseball game on right now!
It’s only college ball (the crack of a metal bat just isn’t the same), but it’s still baseball.
Major League Spring Training games begin next Tuesday, if I recall correctly, and I’m looking forward to those.
I got seriously into baseball as a way to escape the crazy crackers world, so as far as I’m concerned the season can’t start soon enough!
Stay sane my friends!
 Attention Hipsters: For the record, the terms “cray” and “cray-cray” are stupid, and you sound like a total wanker when you use them. In general, not using the entire word makes you sound like a 14-year-old girl. #justsaying
 Doesn’t that sound much better than “cray-cray” which, I repeat, makes you sound like a 14-year-old girl. (Not that there’s anything wrong with 14-year-old girls. They do, most of them, eventually grow up into real human beings.)