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Post-Fact Universe

23rd November 2016

The Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year 2016 is post-truth: an adjective defined as ‘relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief’.

It’s a new landscape, where as fascism takes root around the world, ‘fake news’ is a massive industry, and Donald (who is himself an invention who didn’t even write The Art of The Deal, the book that underscores his entire persona) has appointed a white supremacist as chief White House strategist.

What can we rely on? What is happening next?

Here’s Karl Rove, the later-outed ‘unnamed source’ from a 2004 New York Times Magazine article by Ron Suskind: ‘ The aide said that guys like me were “in what we call the reality-based community,” which he defined as people who “believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.” … “That’s not the way the world really works anymore,” he continued. “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors…and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.”

‘We’re an empire now, and we create our own reality.’

Guess we’ll just have to watch how that plays out.

Clive James once said that humour is ‘common sense, dancing’. In this frightening and confusing cultural moment, Joe Biden memes have been bringing me joy, as Joe puts orange powder in the bathroom, threatens to throw Trump’s wig in the fireplace and stashes fake birth certificates and ‘Secret Muslim Agenda’ files about the place.

My fave is the one where Joe says ‘these memes are just an illusory escape from the public’s feelings of utter powerlessness and uncertainty right now’…

More here:

Stay safe out there, comrades.


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