Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Digital Insanity

This here is a rant, so please understand that it's a rant and not a foot-noted, referenced, scholastically-rooted analysis submitted for your approval. This is my personal opinion, so I dinna care if you agree or not because you know what they say about opinions.

Soooo… you think the world is coming apart all around you, that we’re all doomed?

Everything sucks, right?  Everything is worse now than ever, right? Nothing good is happening around us and it's all going into the dumper, right?  

Too much racism and bigotry and needless bloodshed and insanity from all sides, everywhere? Too much death and destruction? Too much political divisiveness? 

Here’s a flash for you:  It’s ALWAYS been this way in our modern world.  

Police have been murdering people of color without recourse for a century. Racists and bigots have ALWAYS been right there, spewing hatred and threatening violence because they simply don’t like you or the color of your skin or the faith you follow or the clothes you wear or the company you keep. We’ve been drenched in gun-related deaths for as long as I can remember, and I’m pretty old. Politics has always been a venal, vicious enterprise. 

The difference now is that we’re all walking around with our eyes glued to our smart phones/handheld computers/digital overlords, enslaved and inflamed and manipulated by every single thing that happens in our city, our country, our world, 24/7, without pause, relentlessly.

This has happened because NO ONE will put down or turn off their fucking smart (stupid) phones, lift their heads and actually SEE what's happening around them.

We've done this to ourselves... we have no one to blame except US.

Every single person now has the ability to digitally see, ingest and spew their own and everyone else’s stupidity, hatred, fear, violence and insanity, then it’s all whizzed together with everything else and becomes a frothy toxic cocktail of sensory and information overload. 

Humans can only absorb so much before it becomes poisonous and they begin to implode and explode.

The Red Mist.

It doesn’t matter that statistically, crime is down, homicides are down, more people have more jobs, fewer people are losing their homes because of skyrocketing medical bills, fewer American soldiers are dying in stupid wars, gasoline is cheaper than it has been in a decade, more people have access to healthcare, the deficit has been cut by 75%, the economy is generally booming, the housing industry is generally booming, yatta yatta yatta.

None of that matters when you've gone digitally insane, especially if you get all your news, all your input, all your teeth-clenching editorial from one or two very specific sources on a tiny screen that has turned you into a digital junkie... an infotainment addict.

You know what I'm talking about, don't you?

We’re killing ourselves with information overload. We’re slowly dying inside from poisonous inter-connectivity. It affects your waking and sleeping hours, it demands your constant vigilance, it leaves you breathless, gasping for an untended minute or hour or day without the constant immersion in the digital hurricane that we have created.

There is a solution. 

Put down the fucking smart (stupid) phone.

Prayer and $5 will get you a Grande Latte'... only action works. 

Our parents were right. Watching too much TV will make you stupid, so why in the hell are you walking around with your head down, neck bent, eyeballs glued to that tiny screen, all day all night every day non-stop?

I learned a very important lesson in grade school: NEVER try to walk and read a book at the same time because STUPID. But I see people every single day walking and driving and shopping and doing things that require full and complete attention, but their attention is sucked down into their tiny screens and they seem oblivious to the rest of the world. 

Put down the fucking smart (stupid) phone. 

Put it down and take a walk outside and look around you at the birds and clouds and trees and grass, then breathe in deeply and keep walking. 

Don't take that smart (stupid) phone with you. Leave it off and away from your bad self.

Put it down and hug your kids and neighbors and friends and co-workers and tell them how much you love them, how much they mean to you.... and don't think that texting it will be the same. It isn't the same, OK?

Don't leave your interpersonal relationships to the cold dead sterility of texting and messaging. Stop isolating yourself because it's soooo much easier to drop a text than to (ugh!) make a phone call or, you know... actually go TALK to them.

Put it down when you sit down to eat. Put it down when you go shopping. Put it down when you go to the movies (please!). Put it down when you go watch your kids play at the park.  Put it down when you're supposed to be interacting with your spouse/boss/wife/probation officer/dominatrix/manga doppelganger. Put it down when you're hurtling down the freeway at 80mph. Put it down when you know you're not supposed to be looking down at that tiny screen.


I know what you're gonna say: "What?!?! How the hell am I gonna stay in touch with my family and friends and check my work e-mail and personal e-mail and my FecesBook and Twatter and SnapCrap and InstaPuke pages? How will I know what's going on everywhere all at once right now at the tips of my swiping fingers through this tiny digital teevee screen that is on 24 hours a day?!"

Turn it off and put it down... for an hour, a day, a whole weekend.

Put it down to regain your humaneness and compassion and personal connection and love for others, devoid of sectarian religious bullshit and racial animosity and the fear of others you were taught by your parents who were too dense to know better. 

Put it down.  Take a digital vacation. Take a breather.

Now, I'm not saying to ignore the digital world completely, because that would be dumb. Maybe get your information from somewhere that isn't using you for clickbait or marketing metrics, like, say, I don't know... how about a newspaper? You remember those, right? Or a non-fiction book about current events that you have to actually read and digest, no swiping necessary.

Or howzabout this: use several different sources of information to get your news and information instead of the limited ones you use now (you know I'm right, right?) Watch the local and network news, but check out BBC World News too for a truly global perspective. Listen to both RW and progressive talk radio to get a better understanding of issues that we all care about. Sit down with the people you love and respect and know and trust and talk about the stuff you care about.  You know, human interaction. Try it... you'll like it!

Only you can do this… no one else can pull that phone away from your eyes except you.  

Do it… I dare you. 

It will change you. The first step is admitting you have an addiction to your digital overlord, and only then will you understand how much it has enslaved you, how much it has inserted itself into your life... with your total acceptance and approval.

Put it down.

You’ll never know until you try.

Start a trend. Be an early adopter of less technology, not more. Prove to yourself that you can indeed disengage from the digital insanity that surrounds us all like a stinky brown fart. Clear the airspace in your mind of the incessant noise that we've accepted as the cost of our modern world.

If you don’t… if we don’t… the artificial perception of our world as Planet Shitstorm will be the only reality we have, pulling our eyes right out of our fucking heads so we can accidentally stomp them into a red mush. 


You’re welcome. 

Now... go clean the bathroom. CHOP CHOP.

Lead image, gracias de beyondthefear.com; Devo 'Freedom of Choice' video, muchismas gracias de youtube.com; Use your freedom of choice, goddammit!!!


  1. Excellent read, man. It is so nutty, eh? I actually use a flip phone, and use a desktop computer at hime. Yeah, shit will drive you batty. I just use a balance, get the Hell away from the internet, then using within reason ... I love being without it, when I'm out and about ... I like the real living experience, getting out, talking to folks in person, live music, etc, etc ... Devo, kick ass crew ... Thanx

    1. Thanks, RC... it means a lot that to know there are some of us who recognize that technology, like heroin and peanut butter cups, are best when used in moderation. I hardly touch my PC on the weekends. I still have a qwerty keyboard phone that will die soon and I'm not looking forward to trying to find another. George Carlin once said 'Life isn't about the number of breaths you take, but about the moments that take your breath away." I fight every day to stay connected to the real world with my eyes, ears, mind and heart. Have a great day, and THANK YOU again for taking the time to visit my small space here in the ethernet.