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Pro-Social – How the Internet Gave a Voice to the Forgotten

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Everyone is allowed to be angry except Those People is the central thesis of Antisocial: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation, which is a deep look into online culture and also the life of Mike Cernovich. Antisocial’s author, Andrew Marantz, spent hundreds of hours with me and I’m featured throughout the book, usually not favorably.

Marantz, who is a more nuanced thinker than he lets on in the book, plays to the conformist class of woke white liberals, leading him to release a one-dimensional book that will please the cable news audiences at MSNBC.

Despite it’s strongly left-wing point of view, Antisocial is a good read if only because of Marantz’s talent as a writer. He embedded with all of the Wrong People, and his storytelling, while no doubt inspiring chills in others, had me laughing out loud throughout.

Economic populism vs. woke culture.

One way to understand the rise of Trump is to look at the bailouts, foreign wars, and the sheer wrongness of the pundit class. But how could Marantz rise in his own career if he asked why people who were wrong about significant, life-altering issues (housing always goes up and there is no bubble; Iraq has WMD’s) are given a platform by very prestigious outlets?

Has anyone in media ever been seriously held to account for any story, including the more recent Covingtongate fuck-up?

A book honestly examining bad actors on the far left (include cable news commenters) and right wouldn’t sell well, however, and thus the trend (and this is also true of conservatives) is to firmly stake out a place on the Hegelian dialectic.

Either Brett Kavanaugh is 100% not guilty and his accuser is a liar or by supporting Kavanaugh, you are a rape apologist.

Either the Deplorables really are deplorable, or they are great American patriots.

Choose a side and fight!

Reductionism.

Despite the hundreds of mentions of me, you won’t find any references to my major journalistic achievements such as forcing a member of Congress (John Conyers) to resign from Congress.

In an entire career, most reporters will never break the kinds of stories I have, but to appease Marantz’s audience, I must be reduced to a caricature.

The New York Times reviewer describes me as “a hawker of nutritional supplements and self-published books about the irresistibility of simian dominance.”

I checked the reviewer’s resume, and she’s never broken any major story, let alone one leading to the National Security Adviser to the United States President holding meetings about why she has all of the good sources. Maybe she needs to take some Gorilla Mind Rush.

Her view is what you’d expect, as cognitive dissonance leads people to freak out rather than confront the complexity of the human condition.

  • Watch the TED talk about me.

Moral ambiguity.

What if Kavanaugh’s accuser believed her story, either due to false memory or maybe mistaken identity, and Kavanaugh was sort of a drunken lout while also being innocent of the accused conduct?

My mental model of the world, much like quantum computing, allows for probabilities. Maybe seemingly contradictory claims can simultaneously be true.

Maybe Trump supporters aren’t racist (or are) and the media (including a recently fired NY Times columnist Sarah Jeong) are racist.

Marantz’s book is a game of chess where his side are the good guys, and the Trump side are the bad guys. He wants to move social media companies to clear the board of MAGA, while leaving members of his own social class to start more wars in Iraq and God knows anywhere else.

Toxic internet culture.

There were and are no doubt some very toxic “right wing” places online. Gas chamber memes are bad, we can all agree.

Yet it was recently AJ+, a “woke” media network, that published a Holocaust denial video. Is far left wing Al Jazeera playing into anti-Semitic tropes, too? That question is best not asked if you want booked on CNN.

For all their talk about internet culture, woke white liberals are careful to avoid troubling questions, which they dismiss as “Whataboutism.” The now-disbanded Reddit board Coontown was vile even by my standards. While I generally oppose censorship, it’s not hard to see why Reddit wanted it gone.

Does the left dare address videos of the Knockout Game going viral via World Star Hip Hop? Such questions are to them off-limits as it could put their bona fides at risk. What does it say about a culture where innocent people are attacked, camera phones are pulled out and you hear people scream, “Woooooooolrd Star!”

None dare ask that question, yet they be attacked by the toxic call-out culture from their own side.

However no serious discussion of online culture and its toxicity can avoid looking at the bad behavior by every group – not just bad behavior by MAGA types.

The most revealing scene.

After Trump had won the New Yorker held a meeting where they all agreed that Hillary Clinton should have won. The talk immediately turned to how everyone on deck would speak Truth to Power. By this they all understood, “We must attack Trump.”

Andrew, as he does, sets the stage: “We met in a thirty-eight-floor conference room with plate-glass windows overlooking the rooftop gardens of Goldman Sachs, and the Hudson River, and the skyline of New Jersey.”

The irony is lost on Marantz. Or maybe it isn’t, and his intent is Straussian, leading the reader to smile over a snifter of Yamazki 18 and aged Cohiba Siglo VI to observe –

Goldman Sachs wanted Hillary Clinton to win, too.

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Culture

Is “Kung Flu” the latest Media Hoax?

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Several White House reporters confronted Trump regarding his decision to call the coronavirus (or COVID-19) the China Virus.  One reporter asked him about a White House administration official who is alleged to have called the coronavirus Kung Flu.

When the reporter was asked the name of the official, the reporter said she didn’t know.

The original claim regarding Kung Flu comes from CBS reporter Weijia Jiang. On March 17th, she Tweeted:

This morning a White House official referred to #Coronavirus as the “Kung-Flu” to my face. Makes me wonder what they’re calling it behind my back.

Ms. Jiang has not identified the official.

One reason could be because this official does not even exist.

Under American defamation law, you can lie all you like.

You can’t lie about a person by name.

If no White House official called the coronavirus Kung Flu, or if there is some important context missing, then Jiang could be sued.

You can watch the Kung Flu exchange in this video here:

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The Stafford Act Text Message Announcing an Emergency Quarantine is a Hoax

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By now you or someone you know has received a hoax text announcing martial law. With some minor variations, the texts all read the same:

  • In 48 to 72 hours the president will evoke what is called the Stafford act. Just got off the phone with some of my military friends in DC who just got out of a two hour briefing. The president will order a two week mandatory quarantine for the nation. Stock up on whatever you guys need to make sure you have a two week supply of everything. Please forward.

 

The National Security Council issued a rare public statement warning the public that the Stafford act text was a hoax.

How can you tell the Stafford Act Text is a Hoax?

Even if you refuse to accept the NSC’s word on the matter, the text message has some telltale signs of a hoax.

First, the text promises secret insider knowledge. “Just got off the phone with some of my military friends in DC who just got out of a two hour briefing.” This is a vague enough proclamation that it sounds plausible.

Second, no specifics of these friends are given. Who are these friends? Why did they call this specific person?

Third, the hoaxers ask you to spread the message. Why would anyone acting in good faith want to incite a panic?

If an emergency quarantine were able to be declared, the plan would be Top Secret. No one’s friends would just get out of a briefing and start alerting people. THEY WOULD GO TO PRISON FOR LEAKING CLASSIFIED INFORMATION.

If such an emergency plan were in the works and higher command wanted the story to get out, they’d leak it to a credible outlet. Not share chain-letter style text messages.

There’s also tradecraft involved in sharing classified information.

None of the telltale signs (and no I won’t share how to leak classified secrets here) were present in that alert.

UPDATE: Other outlets are now reporting that the Stafford Act text is a foreign disinformation campaign:

The Trump administration is alleging that a foreign disinformation campaign is underway aimed at spreading fear in the country amid the coronavirus pandemic, three U.S. officials said Monday. On Sunday, federal officials began confronting what they said was a deliberate effort by a foreign entity to sow fears of a nationwide quarantine amid the virus outbreak.

Agencies took coordinated action Sunday evening to deny that any such plans were put in place, as they tried to calm a nation already on edge by disruptions to daily life caused by the virus.

 

——-

Read More about Mike Cernovich here.

Who is Mike Cernovich?

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How Trump Drafted Google into the War Against Coronavirus

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Elvis Presley served in the Army after he was drafted, and in American history it was common for celebrities to serve their country during times of national crisis. Noblesse oblige, or the duty the noble and rich owed to society, arouse perhaps out of morality or maybe simple self-preservation. If you’re getting while the getting is good, giving something back goes a long way to avoid class resentment.

Those thoughts were perhaps on Trump’s mind (or more likely his instinct) when he announced that Google was taking massive action to help America fight the coronavirus.

Google at first pushed back at the suggestion that it, a nearly trillion dollar mega-corporation, actually doing something to help the users it profits from.

Why should Google help save lives? Why should Google do anything other than operate as an amoral, blood-sucking corporation that violates user privacy and exploits children?

The media bros were quick to rush to save Google. Poor Google! They were being bullied by the ORANGE MAN BAD.

Google’s media errand boys like Jake Tapper and others were quick to publish stories attacking Trump for suggesting that Google actually do something.

Some like your humble correspondent Mike Cernovich saw right away was Trump was doing.

Trump was drafting Google into the war against coronavirus.

Google, whatever its motivations, answered the draft.

Public pressure must intensify.

The corporations make billions of dollars a day by spying on users.

The least they can do is use that data to find out where coronavirus hot spots are, share that information with the CDC, and get information shared with the sick.

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