First, the media. Oh my God. There is something prerevolutionary about watching the pundit class pretend -- condescend -- to know what America is thinking and feeling. It's strange: about the only thing Noam Chomsky got right in his life was his emphasis on media construction of political narrative. But that point of view, radical as late as the 1990s, is now firmly in the mainstream, and we can see how irritatingly shallow Chomsky's analysis really is.
Second, the candidates. My take on Obama? He's a brilliant, arrogant SOB who will, in the words of his fellow Chicagoan, take you home and make you like it. I don't think this is projection on my part. I don't know how effective he'll be as a politician; he's been dealt an awful hand. However, I think he's more capable than the extremely lackluster generation preceding him.
H. Clinton, I find it difficult that anyone can now believe is a competent technocrat. To be sure, she looks good among the Democrats of New York State. And I think a re-evaluation of W. Clinton's political skills is in order. After all, this was the president that a third-rate science fiction author fought to a standstill in the halls of Congress. Clinton looked like a master politician, but compared to whom, exactly? A man stands tall in an ocean of garden gnomes.
McCain, the best thing I can say of him is that, like George W. Bush, he's not personally racist. This distinguishes him from many of his Republican colleagues in the Senate. And, to be fair, it's an accomplishment for a man of his generation and background. The McCains are an old Mississippi slave-owning family, but the Navy seems to have knocked that crap out of this branch. There is a post I will likely never write on General McCain, the late president of the University of Southern Mississippi, racist, plagiarist, extreme right wing activist, and cousin to the current nominee. Perhaps someone else will.
Third, on the supposed existential threat to our way of life. What a delusion. Some stoner in a cave sets up a Dilbert operation with a bunch of disaffected depressives, and manages to score a brutal success against the most unprepared and inept American administration of the last hundred years, and people are still filling their pants over it years later? Come over to my place, and I will waterboard you until you see reason. After all, it's not torture. Don't worry, you'll get a receipt.
Fourth, on Internet trolls. I've discovered something. Every single Internet troll I've investigated in detail is a disturbed freak far off the bell curve. I'm talking about seriously goddamn demented, and I'm pretty jaded. So when you see some insanely obnoxious jackass comment elsewhere, say by Al or Fred or Sailer or Abb1 or Emerson, you should assume that they're well into double wet suit land in their personal lives. It's the way to bet.
This includes HDTD's own trolls, of course.
That's about all I have on politics. There was a post on media studies, current events, and Dean Ing's wrong-in-interesting-ways story, "Very Proper Charlies", that might end up in different form somewhere else. But I'm tired; two hours of sleep in a self-designed chamber will do that.