angrysampoetry

the foundations of oppression can't be plucked up without the anger of a multitude

Posts Tagged ‘trump

The Cambridge Analytica Hobby-Horse, part 1: manipulating elections

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Recently while travelling in Northern Europe, I found myself, against my better judgment, inside a ‘street food’ market. There I witnessed and then joined in with a debate between the chef at one of the stalls and a cleaner. The cleaner maintained that he did not watch the news because ‘none of it is real’. ‘America, Russia,’ he said, ‘it’s all lies.’ This, evidently was his hobby-horse. The chef, however, thought that you should follow the news because you needed to know things. If you did not know things, he argued, you might think, for example, that Africa is a terrible place full of poverty and war but if you ask someone who has been there then you would know that it’s not like that at all. The hobby-horse he was riding was also quite evident.

I am, with Lawrence Sterne, a great admirer of a hobby-horse. ‘So long as a man rides his HOBBY-HORSE peaceably and quietly along the King’s highway,’ he writes in his rambling genius of an 18th century novel, Tristram Shandy, ‘and neither compels you or me to get up behind him, —- pray, Sir, what have either you or I to do with it?’title piece tristram shandy Read the rest of this entry »

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Written by angrysampoetry

August 24, 2018 at 4:51 pm

“When will 2016 end?”

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Social media transmits news and fixes mass opinion at an unprecedented rate. Richard Dawkins’s memes[1] – self-replicating ideas – evolved into cat pictures with captions, and those pictures were spread around millions of people. The blogsphere/twitterati/instafam soon hits on a trend and runs with it until new ones emerge and the old ones are forgotten. Our ‘hive mind’ quickly selects phrases, jokes and attitudes; tags people with labels of hero and villain; and chooses trends, news and fashion which then pass into what might be termed ‘common sense’.

This year it became the fashion to bemoan the year itself. 2016’s favourite enemy was 2016. The calendar year became to modern people what the various devils, dibbuks, duppies, djinns, incubi, faeries and etc. had been to people of pre-Enlightenment civilisations. “Oh 2016, why have you taken from us yet another most precious member of our tribe?” wailed the tweeters and posters from their sackcloth toilet seats, virtually tearing their hair and beating their breasts in mourning.2016-deaths Read the rest of this entry »

Written by angrysampoetry

December 29, 2016 at 6:31 pm