Back over at the Assembly of the Aggrieved, it is fascinating to see the odd bedfellows who chose to engage in the “95 Theses” discussion that began on March 27. Let us briefly foray into the world of taxonomy and classify some of the participants, shall we? In no particular order, we have:
· The insiders who think they are outsiders
· The privileged-yet-somehow-downtrodden
· The apolitical who constantly bring up political issues
· Leftists who hang out with right-wingers
· Secret Republicans
· 200 Flavors o’ Karen
· Those showing out for their adoring crowds
· The “My God does he ever edit his writing before he posts?” clique
· The good faith actors (a few)
· The bad faith actors
· The ugly faith actors
· Faith No More
· NIMBYs, FIMBYs, and Gumbys
Do some groups overlap? Sure. Did I capture the entire ecosystem? Hardly.
What stews my radishes the most is the level of discourse. As an almost 50 year old essayist with an 96% winning polemicist percentage, it is shocking-adjacent to see how many arguments devolve into nonsense. The thread needs to be viewed as not a forum for a legitimate exchange of ideas or a haven for critical thinkers but a series of “Gotchas!” and “You tell ‘em Mac!” ripostes. In short, it gets very tedious very quickly.
So why am I talking about them? Because, for better or worse (and largely the latter), we are still operating in a virtual world and social media is where a great deal of action is taking place. In digital spaces, we huddle together, much like the robots in the critically acclaimed 2004 feature film, “I, Robot.” Where there is light, there is heat…or so the saying goes. Except there is little illumination in that space. And the voices mimic dialogue but they are really just shouting to be the Most Whatever (e.g., loudest, angriest, victimized, put-upon).
What is coming up? Fantastic question. Obviously, I have been less than active on my Spartan Considerations platform in recent months. Most of my civic engagement has been via the Forward Maryland podcast. That said, I think it is reasonable to assume that this blog will heat up as 2022 approaches. Once there are more candidates to write about, the posts will come shortly thereafter. And if anyone of a social democratic persuasion or further to the comradely, democratic left wants to talk about seeking public office, feel free to get in touch. It is an established fact that Spartan Considerations is the Best Trial Balloon opportunity in Maryland.
Coming up soon: thoughts on the Columbia Association Board elections (including one endorsement), musings on the Rouse Project (Selfless or Selfish?), and, if you are lucky, pictures of the Bold Gazebo Cats!