Hello, America. At least, I assume you’re American. My semi-reliable traffic robot says that the vast majority of my readers are fellow worshippers of corn syrup and random drone strikes. I have a few fans in Russia, but they don’t have the compulsive media addiction I need in a readership. Outsiders spend too much time away from their smartphones, achieving things. Like most Americans, I dream of getting rich and famous doing nothing, a right guaranteed by misquoted colonial aristocrats. Achieving this dream requires me to pander to my star-spangled base.
So let’s talk about America.
By now, most of the country has finally seen through the hangovers and clouds of Dorito dust dominating the landscape. This newfound clarity won’t lead anyone to reality, but it will let them remember their New Year’s resolutions. A proud tradition of self-improvement established by ancient Romans between Imperial assassinations, where we strive to sculpt the bloated marble of our current selves into the slim, cultured, eagle-riding demigods hiding inside. Resolutions are typically so successful that they can be forgotten by Valentine’s Day as a reborn nation basks in newfound perfection.
After watching my countrymen perfect themselves for twenty-two years, it’s time to join in. I’m ready to follow the national path towards self-fulfilment by following a simple resolution. In 2014, I will improve nothing about myself while letting my existing flaws get worse. I’ll pursue this actively for a month, until allowing it to achieve itself passively for the rest of the year. It’s a road paved with hard work, but I think that I can reach the end of it. After all, millions reach the same goal every year.
So what’s this mean for you?
I’m changing my angle. I used to buy the company line about satire changing the world. We’ve all heard the stock quotes. My personal favorite comes from Juvenal, who said “It’s hard not to write satire.” Satire I hides the DNA for everyone that’s ever tied their misanthropy to a knock-knock joke and sold it back to the public. It’s hard to read Juvenal’s declaration of war against his own city-state without jumping into letters. It makes you think, for a moment, that a satirist can strive to change his environment. I thought that way for some time.
That doesn’t quite work. The modern American is opposed to evolution. Not just changing themselves, but the idea of evolution. Which is a symptom of the fact that they’re opposed to learning itself. As long as self-delusion is a virtue, trying to change anything isn’t productive. It’s driving into a wall of willful ignorance. So under the first clause of my resolution, I’m done trying to change anything.
Before you start patting yourself on the back for being the type that actually reads brickwall articles and theoretically learns something from them, the self-delusion I mentioned isn’t limited to anti-intellectuals. Far from it. We have a plague of people that confuse confirmation bias with research. The most grandiose delusions of our era come from people convinced that they’ve gleaned the answers to modern civilization’s ills from the academic equivalent of the back of a cereal box. Technology makes it easier to cherry-pick perspectives in line with your predetermined conclusion than any other point in history. Anyone that staple-guns the label intellectual to their forehead has managed to puncture their skull in the process.
The only thing worse than failed lessons is reaching the wrong audience. In the summer, I took shots at the kidneys of Tumblr’s social justice crowd. The men’s rights maggots took these points and ran with them. I’m fine with being ignored, and love violent opposition. But being misinterpreted is enough to drive me into an asylum. So I’m out of the game of trying to help anyone with anything at any time.
Then what am I after now?
Here’s where the second half of my resolution comes in. I’m giving into my worst impulses. I have a mean-spirited tendency to laugh at sinking ships that I’ll embrace throughout the coming year. I’d like to pole-vault over the line between pointing out America’s faults and mocking them for kicks. This isn’t particularly noble, but they don’t hand out too many feudal claims these days. There are, however, plenty of oversensitive beehives to jump-kick. As long as there’s an army looking for a reason to get offended, we ought to have someone to offend them.
I also have a propensity for vitriol. In the past, I’ve made an effort to stop short of outright slander. That seems arbitrary at this point. What’s the point of having all those fancy corporate lawyers floating around if they never have a sparring partner? I have a shit list longer than Dune, and I feel like crossing a few names off of it. Now that I have a platform with a real following, the reactions should be interesting.
I used to say I had a complicated relationship with America. That’s not the exact truth. I have a simple relationship with America that I’ve over-complicated for a long time. Rome’s burning and I’m taking fiddle lessons.