Keeping Up In Trumpistan

I found these Medium listicles today, and they are well worth reading, if you have the time. The point of the weekly lists is to … well, to cut through the overflow of information and to keep you from normalizing all this stuff in your head.

The hazard in the early stages of every authoritarian process is that we humans are 1) generally too busy to pay attention to all that’s happening, and 2) damned adaptable. Adaptability is normally one of our better traits, but it’s something to resist in yourself when what you’re adapting to is a steady wave of outrages you fear may grow into a defining act of horror.

Refreshingly, they don’t pretend to the staid formality of regular news. When Trump or his toadies lie, the articles use the word “lie.”

They all carry the same title:

Experts in authoritarianism advise to keep a list of things subtly changing around you, so you’ll remember.

… and cover events either happening or uncovered during that week.

Week 1
Week 2
Week 3
Week 4
Week 5
Week 6
Week 7
Week 8
Week 9
Week 10
Week 11
Week 12

I haven’t found any past Week 12, dated Feb. 4, but I’m hoping there’s at least one more out there, and that they’ll keep coming.

I’ve started talking to people, strangers out in public. I live in a fairly wealthy, fairly pro-Trump area, and I just decided I’d start saying some of the things I’m thinking in casual conversations. I generally think people will see this as tedious and inappropriate, but I’ve been surprised at how receptive people seem. They listen, at least. One has already told me he regrets his vote for Trump; several have expressed the “at least he’s not Hillary” sentiment. I argue with that last, and though I’m more interested in convincing people rather than shutting them up, the arguments have at least shut some of them up.

Here’s another article worth reading, to give you a little context about lies in media, the manufacturing of political “stories” — BY THE MEDIA — during the Iraq War.

If You Were a Leftist Teenager During the Iraq War, You Were Gaslit 24/7 by Everyone

This sort of crap is what instantly pops into my mind when I hear someone say we have a “liberal media.” I paid attention during the Iraq War, and the media had its collective lips so stuck to George W. Bush’s ass it was surreal. This was the moment when all that “Support the Troops” crap got thrown out into the public spotlight, and anyone who didn’t support the troops was a traitor.

 

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