Managing Expectations

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how to make 2021 less like 2020

Joe Biden has not yet been officially sworn in, but his admin has found ways to temper our expectations early. Between his proposed cabinet picks [1]Now that he got his name recognition, Mayor Pete got to cash in his DNC chips for transportation secretary. Twitter troll Neera Tanden is up for OMB director. I will stop there, u get the point. and the diminishing stimulus amount [3]which is about 10% of what countries less afraid of socialism are doing for their public, it’s very clear the Biden Admin is planting its feet firmly in the relative safety of neolib territory.

It is important to have discourse around the typical Dem shittiness of this upcoming administration. But I am writing this to emphasize the need to refocus our attention locally.

The internet we currently occupy [2]thank u twitter, facebook, and instagram is setup such that the Big Stories that get Engagement are often linked to national politics. There is so much going on, it can be easy to miss what is happening right under our feet. I am very guilty of engaging in Too Much Discourse and too little community engagement. Writing this blog is a callout to myself, and anyone else as terminally online and cynical.

We will never make big gains nationally until the left can bring a sustained amount of attention to local matters. Everyone watched in horror as Nazis descended on the Capitol, but how many people were aware of what was happening to their state Capitol? There was violence and effigies across the country.

We are (rightly!) arguing about $1400 versus $2000 while in my fair city of Los Angeles: the city continues sweeps that put the unhoused at risk for COVID[4]we surpassed 1 million cases lol fuck, a black woman was assaulted at a protest, the horrid Prop 22 is already gutting union jobs in favor of app-based gig workers. There is plenty to be cyberbullying our mayor and city council about, every day!

Hounding your local elected officials about the state of your neighborhood feels good. Typing up an eloquently worded takedown to Eric Garcetti sends a blooming rush of adrenaline through my body in a way being in the street with strangers cannot. I wouldn’t find myself standing up and yelling at a council meeting, but I can dunk on his tweets and bring visibility to his failures.

Rather than shy away from community work because I’m a homebody, I am trying to make this year one where I engage with my strengths. Email the mayor and our city council. Support those on the street with my dollars and my reach online.

We’re gonna watch Biden get sworn in soon, and more violence is inevitably coming. Instead of despairing, I’m gonna counter the inevitable feeling of helplessness with work. Let’s Get Involved.

In the spirit of getting back to Actually Writing again I am keeping this short!

Tweet at me, message me on discord[5]handle: candice ∞#3160. See you around!

fußnoten

1 Now that he got his name recognition, Mayor Pete got to cash in his DNC chips for transportation secretary. Twitter troll Neera Tanden is up for OMB director. I will stop there, u get the point.
2 thank u twitter, facebook, and instagram
3 which is about 10% of what countries less afraid of socialism are doing for their public
4 we surpassed 1 million cases lol fuck
5 handle: candice ∞#3160

Everything is Different Now.

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This is just the beginning.

I had so many other essays to write. Our potential theocracy of a country, the rise of newsletter culture as traditional journalism dies, you know, light fare.

All of my thoughts and opinions on anything That Might Be can get tossed in the brain trash, because the entire world paradigm is shifting. The global health crisis we are living through is accelerating long needed discussions and laying bare the real concerns of the elite. Class war is looming thanks to Covid-19.

Facebook: The Right-Wing Data Collection Company That Ruined The Internet

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and probably the world

Facebook is terrible. This is not a controversial or edgy take to have in 2019. It’s an agreeable fact. They are a data collection site that also allows your mom to comment on your photos from college. Aka the worst of all possible Internets.

It is a terrible website that has ruined the Internet as we once knew it, and will go on to ruin everything else if we don’t stop it. They’ve secretly collected and sold our data. Damaged the psyche of millions, from the traumatized Content Moderators to the Boomers addicted to arguing about clickbait. Their lies about metrics skewed the entire internet toward an untenable trend that no one wanted, leaving a hollow shell of content to crumble in on itself.

The 2020 election in the US is looming, and Facebook seems as committed as ever to their laissez faire approach regarding political ads. They claim “free speech” but are much more concerned with promoting right wing content as legitimate. This is a dangerous time for the future of the internet.

Beyond the Streisand Effect: Ellen and GWB

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“I thought once you got rich there’d be no consequences!”

I’m not sure exactly when the dam broke. One could argue social media played a role in the end of our collective disillusionment with celeb culture, consumerism, the whole thing. We’re a little jaded now. That’s an essay for another time.

People are louder about injustice, more aware of the state of the world. There is a growing movement for change (both in right and left-wing circles). A celebrity choosing class solidarity with a war criminal is a sign that above all, their allegiance is to the status quo and we cannot rely on them. Celebrities are not good, they are not our friends.

Subreddit Surfing: /r/imsorryjon

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eldritch horror drawing of garfield and jon by the reddit user fine-line.
illo by reddit user /Fine-line

Reddit is the internet incarnate. An ocean of content with strange creatures lurking its murky depths and tons of garbage on top. It is both the best and worst of humanity, all available under one domain. As I wade through these treacherous waters, I’ll share the best gems you won’t find in /r/all.

Let’s Talk About Podcasts and Plagiarism

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Questionable ethics in this burgeoning medium is a bad foundation to build on.

For a media platform that has exploded as quickly as podcasts, we expect growing pains. Like when you were in high school and didn’t totally understand citing. You got a D and a “See Me” on a paper. Today, there are at least two podcasts with worldwide audiences using words that aren’t theirs, and making bank while pretending they are doing all of research. The responses of Crime Junkie and The Dollop to allegations of podcast plagiarism is distressing. They are extremely popular and influential shows setting a bad standard. Not only for the medium’s legitimacy, but for our own ethical consumption.

Dungeons & Dragons is Good for My Mental Health

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Illo by Candice

NOTE: I am not a licensed therapist or psychologist. This essay is about my personal experience with D&D and how much it has helped my struggles. I believe everyone should go to therapy if they can. D&D is not a replacement for therapy, but I think it has great mental health benefits. Please speak to a professional if you can. Take care of yrself 💖.

I have not been playing Dungeons & Dragons long. In more geologic timeframes, I am a newbie, a bandwagon-hopper who took an interest thanks to a well-crafted podcast and streams on Geek & Sundry. This, the 5th edition, is my first real experience with tabletop role-playing games in general. It is definitely one of those hobbies that once I started, it felt like something I’d been doing forever.

Over a year in and hundreds of hours of Dungeons & Dragons under my belt, I’m a different (better) person. D&D has been wonderful for my mental health. Roleplaying has taught me lessons about interpersonal relationships that will stick with me forever. Thanks to this game where I pretend to be a teenage dragon who loves crystals and communing with nature, I’m more confident, willing to take risks and be part of a team.