Fear & Loathing in American Voting, 2016

In the diagrams above:
“tax Wall Street” = “deal with climate change” = “socialism” = “no wars.”


The following rather moralizing (and no doubt futile) essay is a bonus with today’s posting.


When The You We See Is The You You Are

My response to Charles Eisenstein’s essay (cited just below) follows:

The Lid Is Off
by Charles Eisenstein

Charles Eisenstein presents the dilemma posed by modern electronics communications and recording technology eroding the ease of concealment of unsavory personal behavior and attitudes, which ease of concealment was up until recently an intrinsic aspect of human society. He describes three examples:

1. Exposure of lewd “locker room” talk about women by Donald Trump, audio recorded a decade or more ago,

2. Exposure of Hillary Clinton’s speeches to Wall Street bankers (her actual political beliefs, opinions, and promises to the financial industry); by hacked e-mail.

3. Exposure of many instances of police brutality (e.g., beatings, fatally shooting unarmed civilians, even non-fleeing unresisting ones); by cell phone video.


When I began work in the classified arena (1978) I instantly learned to consider every communication, and even research inquiry, whether face-to-face and verbal, or written, and especially through any electronic means (via computer networks), to be the equivalent of a postcard: it would be readable by anyone and everyone who could come across it, or eavesdrop (or “wiretap,” or “hack”). This was a procedural form of “say what you mean, and mean what you say.” In other words, understand and accept the consequences of what you are saying (or writing, or making research inquiries about). So, it never occurred to me to try running any money-making schemes, or seek out porno through my employer’s computer/internet systems (not so hard to do since I had no interest in these things, but people who did were invariably caught and fired).

At a more basic level, the “solution” to the dilemma posed by Charles Eisenstein is simply to not be a hypocrite. “Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.” Speak and act as if every moment is a “postcard” entirely visible to any and all, and easily recorded by them. Naturally, no actual human could ever maintain a perfect record in this regard, but making the effort to do so will improve your character and thus self-esteem, and it is very likely to keep you out of a lot of trouble.

The way to do this is to become self-aware, either by the luck of good parenting and education (when you are young), or by the luck of learning this truth as a result of the blowback from your own folly that you (also) luckily escaped from and got to live down (and then reform yourself). Once self-aware, you identify any disparities between your persona (the public you) and your shadow (the hidden negative aspects of your personality), and you breach the wall of hypocrisy and denial you had maintained between these two, letting in disinfecting light (and public view) that clears up your hidden rot: mean what you say and say what you mean.

So, for the Trump part of you: enjoy your sex dreams within the vast expanse of your own mind, but leave them there. There is no need to share them as part of boasting and ridicule expressed to boost comradeship, which is in fact a form of intimacy (between boys and boys, and girls and girls) that you veil with bravado to hid from yourself your embarrassment about it. Don’t act to demand attention and dominate, but command respect and gain trust by how you consistently act.

For the Hillary part of you: enjoy your daydreams of Machiavellian manipulations of people that result in your glorification, because like Walter Mitty, Billy Liar and all brides, it is so enjoyable to be the star of your own movie. But, keep these dreams (of inadequacy desiring power) within the vast expanse of your own mind, and make sure you do not deceitfully actualize them, thus splitting yourself into a persona that is a lie, and a shadow of hidden corruption as your motivating core. Instead of “me against the world” (like Rastignac at the end of Balzac’s “Le Père Goriot”), seek to be in and with the world in a way that maintains an honest self-respect.

For the chest-thumping alpha-male gorilla in you: play by the rules when exercising your power, be unbiased in how you treat others, and never forget your humanity when dealing with another person, whether you like them or not. Every moment of your life is a postcard. Make sure that any unbiased (and ethical) observer who happens to read any of your postcards of the moment can conclude he/she would have acted as you did if he/she had been in your place; or he/she can accept the choices you made in those circumstances. When acting as an agent of society to maintain order (peace and safety), do so in a manner that upholds the ideals of that society. You will be proud to have served honorably and ethically, and with a consistency of such action you will earn appreciation and gratitude.

Developing and maintaining good character during the course of your life will prevent the occurrence of many possible regrets when it comes time for you to die.