He’s just not that into your politics

New York Times piece from recent weeks suggest that the real divide in the US is between those who are “hard partisans” and those who really don’t care about politics. “For partisans, politics is a morality play, a struggle of good versus evil. But most Americans just see two angry groups of people bickering over issues that may not always seem pressing or important.” To get some perspective, “a Pew study finds that 10 percent of Twitter users are responsible for 97 percent of all tweets about politics.”

While some voters’ “single issue” may be whether TikTok is banned or not (you can ask Dr. Koontz about that one), there is often no overlap between what political junkies think is important and what less-attentive citizens do. The researchers for this article found that drug use and the political influence of wealthy donors were high on the list of concerns for hard partisans (Republicans and Democrats respectively), but these issues hardly registered with those less engaged.

In contrast, the things that bothered the rest of the country were the deficit and moral decline. So “unity” between Left and Right may not be as useful as getting the chattering classes and the rest of America to listen to each other. Now, where’s my megaphone?

Ground News is a site that collects and collates reporting, according to a right-left spectrum. These projects are always interesting experiments, but often pleases no one, as most people assume their views are the centered and reasonable. At the very least, it is interesting to compare the language used by different news outlets. 

Inez Stepman argues that the way to help reduce the partisan divide in America is to gut the Academy. She argues that anti-American sentiment and revisionist history curriculum are perpetuating the domination of identity politics in elite institutions and business. 

Some considerate Britsplaining: Paul Collier, an Oxford professor, suggests that states should split their Electoral College vote according to their votes and reduce postal voting.

And about those pesky voting machines

The eagle has landed

Pharmaceutical company, Pfizer, announced last week they have a COVID vaccine ready to go. While the timing of the press release looked strangely advantageous to a particular presidential candidateThe Hustle detailed the winners and losers. Airlines, fashion and fuel companies are on the up and home fitness and takeout pizza are down.Rev. Fisk is not the only one who is concerned about this vaccine. While questions remain about who gets it and how safe it is, many have noted the potential for COVID vaccines to use abortion-derived cell lines. The Lozier Institute is keeping tabs of which ones do and don’t. The CEO of Pfizer says he’ll take the vaccine first to ease public concern. Thanks, we feel so much better now…
Everyone’s favorite eccentric billionaire, Elon Musk says he tested positive and negative for COVID in one day. Rev Fisk found an informative Twitter thread from Mr Musk, asking about what getting a “positive” test even means.

Cities and first world problems

The collective area of the world’s cities has doubled over last 20 years as edges of urban centres expand. A study out of China found that “more than 400 million [Chinese] farmers have left their land for the cities since 2000. And in the three years from 2011, the cement produced in China surpassed the output of the US for the entire 20th century, according to industry figures.” The trend for expanding cities is also seen in the US, but for different reasons. 

And to Norway, where a wokester has decided people need to know everything that’s wrong with his city’s history. Markus Moestue has come up with a “Critical Map” of Oslo, which highlights the sites that are must-see for Progressive tourists. These include a statue of Norway’s national hero (a slave owner), the residence of the royal family, who perpetuate inequality by being rich, and the HQ of an evil oil company who use their money to promote their business. If Mosestue sees his dream come true, more people will make maps like these and hate their cities too. So be sure to pack your outrage!

Quick Hits for the Eyebuds

🚄 A “hyper-tube” train tested in Korea has achieved a speed of 1000km/h
🔒 A Google VPN… Is that an oxymoron?
🎙️ Deepfakes come for Frank Sinatra and it’s kinda creepy
🌙 Jupiter’s ocean moon Europa probably glows
🌋 Astronomers say they’ve discovered a “hell” planet with lava oceans and raining rocks
🕷️ Steampunk spiders made from clocks and mechanical components
🍗 Three men and a chicken: Some bros have been banned from Yellowstone after trying to cook dinner in a hotspring
📺 Netflix is trialing “linear TV” in areas of France, like, you know, normal TV. Turns out lots of choice can be exhausting.

Teknae’s Swollen Hermeneutic

Be suspicious of “news.”

Humans crave conflict. Our bent/broked/fallen/”normal” understanding of the problem of “good” and “evil” leads us to conceive of our mythologies exclusively in the terms of heroes who slay monsters. The dilemma is that 1st-world molehill monsters can only help us justify our rebellious rage at God (and the dissatisfaction inherent in carnal love for American living) when we make mountain monsters out of them. This is how Twitter makes money. 

Or, when they feel like it, how any gaslighting power steals elections.

But before we tangent into a 51% mandate that Republicans follow completely different standards, expectations, and rules than the AP did for the last four years, let me just assert again that if learning the American Presidential election (or any election) endured or was won by fraudulent tactics comes as “news” to you, then you have already proven my point.

Evil men don’t do good things out of kindness. They only do it out of selfishness. And, as the tragedy of the commons demonstrates, nobody is motivated to look out for anyone else without skin in the game. 

If you believe that on this side of our Lord’s parousia the United States of America is beyond corruption or collapse, then I have a Small Catechism to sell you.

When no other monster is there to fight, my neighbor or brother will do in a pinch. That is the “news” evil men sell you as popcorn for the brain. Their consciences are seared. Those who listen to them become like them.

By the same token, be suspicious of your need to share. Remember that your information is the crop, and Twitter is the harvester, cutting the value off the top, repacking and selling it back to you from their mansions over the skies of Siliconopia. 

It remains, the more time you spend online, the more you submit yourself to these self-made overlords of information.

To believe that Christians, Christianity, or your local church and family structures can offer ourselves freely to the (atheistic/or-demonic) social and cognitive programming experiment that is the post-networked industrialization zeitgheist without ramification seems to me to be a perilous jettisoning of the fear of God.

If man’s incurvatus need to justify our inner psyches at the cost of being hijacked by an oligarchy of corporations whose sole purpose is to amplify “news” of the discord among us, all in order to profit from it at our expense isn’t enough to convince you that the ancient march of debt and ghettoized bond-servitude are present North American problems fast becoming future watersheds for you and your children, then nothing will.

I’m not paranoid. God is watching me. But give Ed Snowden a listen anyway: it will expand your mind. (Joe Rogan’s language is “NSFW”) 

  1. Joe Rogan Experience #1368 – Edward Snowden
  2. Joe Rogan Experience #1536 – Edward Snowden

Then remember that none of that matters. Only the Ten Commandments, the Creed and the Lord’s Prayer do. But all this other nonsense helps us remember why we need them so desperately.

Until next time,

Be strong, and let your heart know courage.
Rev. Fisk

The Great Divide

A recent Cambridge study claims that the partisan divide in the United States is approaching “levels of ethnic parochialism in Bosnia and Kosovo.” Spending some time on Twitter might make you think there is a dangerous “balkanization” afoot, and yet, hanging out in your average neighborhood,  you may wonder at the hype. Reality has a way of biting back and the white noise of propaganda can only distract for so long.  

Many on the Left view anyone who is not sold out to the Woke agenda as ignorant “deplorables,” but people see when celebrities excoriate anyone who won’t “believe all women,” but not when it’s their candidate in question. People see when the COVID heavies insist on keeping schools, churches, and conservative political events shut down, but laud Biden celebrations and BLM protests. People don’t want to defund the police and are tired of being told they are racists when they are not.

While a Biden/Harris presidency would likely be the Wokest yet, the alliances forming between classical liberals and conservatives under Trump are strengthening. Folks from all over the political map can agree that America is a great country and that the Constitution is worth defending. Across the nation, most people see that freedom of speech, religious liberty and open inquiry are foundational to a flourishing society.

“The truth will never be extinguished by human arms”

There is growing defense of freedom against the totalitarian Left, and people are waking up to the inconsistency of the elites and their news media. So be strong! “The truth will never be extinguished by human arms”, not even the strong arm of the White House.

When the [elite] levee breaks…

Silicon Valley doesn’t like Abigail Shrier’s book about how Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria is ruining the lives of teenage girls.
Glenn Greenwald didn’t mince his words: the inability of the US to count votes is dangerous. “An electoral system suffused with this much chaos, error, protracted outcomes and seemingly inexplicable reversals will sow doubt and distrust even among the most rational citizens.”