“Mass hysteria about non-existent crimes arising from race fear, that gives pretext for violence against out-group members and subversion of democracy to save children/the nation” is a not a bad description of what Nazism really was (in addition to lying, fascism, antisemitism).
(That’s a pretty good summary also of QAnon, which is a cult-like belief system about false child sex abuse accusations.

It’s a religious, political moral panic that leverages lies about harm to children to generate activism and aggression, including the Capitol Riot.)
When you hear rioters screaming “Hang Mike Pence” and “Pence is a pedophile,” that’s QAnon.

They believe Pence can be executed not just for betraying Trump, but because he is part of a global elite leftwing sex trafficking cabal.

(Justice John Roberts, too.)
There was a similar religious moral panic in the 1990’s about Satanism & child sex abuse—tangled up in a sick rightwing extremist culture of end-times books/films, Tea Party scapegoat politics, anti-government white nationalist militia.

1990’s tabloids = 2020 Facebook & YouTube
The crazed mythology, secret militia camps, irresponsible rhetoric, white nationalist Christianity exploded at Ruby Ridge, at Waco, Texas in the Koresh compound, and in Oklahoma City—where 168 people (15 were children) died at the hands of domestic terrorist Timothy McVeigh.
I have mostly dismissed QAnon as a convoluted delusion. But the riot reminds us sick ideologies and words—lies and repetitive meme-like phrases of false accusations of harm (stop the steal, radical left, save the childrenetc.)—are used to trigger disgust, can lead to violence.
On Wednesday, before the riot, we learned that President-elect Biden was choosing Merrick Garland as the new attorney general.

Garland prosecuted the Oklahoma City Bombing case.
There is a right symmetry to the notion that a decent man, respected by all sides, nominated by our first black president, denied a seat on the court through both McConnell’s fiat and the opprobrium of racial hatred—should now serve as the head of our legal system in these times.
Garland would have made a fine SCOTUS judge. (The hypocrisy of the late-term appointment of Ginsburg’s replacement was real wickedness.)

May we, however, put aside the slight and begin a new era of civil rights and house-cleaning.
This Oxford lecture is an excellent primer on “epistemic grooming,” echo chambers, social media reinforcement of moral panic, and conspiracy theories that use evidential preemption to cut off outside critique.


(Watch it!!! Tame that dopamine-addicted squirrel brain.)

And read this beautiful account of a man of decency, a man entirely unlike the sick, destructive instigators of 1995, and now.

And follow C. Thi Nguyen @add_hawk—invite him on your podcasts, news shows, TikTok dance videos, interview him, share the video, order his books, and let him know the idea of gamification of moral outrage through “engineered sticky narrowmindedness” is a powerful concept.
Stay strong, America. We’ll find a way forward together. It’s been a dark 4 years. Nine more days until morning comes.

“And crown thy good
with brotherhood...”

“We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny.” —Martin Luther King, Jr.

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More from @mariachong

13 Jan
Political language manipulation is interesting. False cancel culture allegations seem to be a mainstay in negative polarization.

Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, today upset about masks and metal detectors, ends his dissent by denouncing "cancel culture."

Other times Jordan has used cancel culture for rhetorical purposes:

June 26, 2020 Fox News
July 1, 2020 Fox
July 29, 2020 Tech hearings
August 19, 2020 News article
Sept. 2, 2020 Canton fundraiser
October 31, 2020 Tweet
Nov. 21, 2020 Coronavirus interview, Fox
(And many more)
This one from three days ago is like a culture war fortune cookie:

Read 26 tweets
10 Jan
It’s actually an interesting and deliberate psychological mechanism of violence.

It was noted in the 1930’s how fascists and extremists used used speech that incited violence, then fell back on the cover of plausible deniability, “I was only joking.”
The kinds of warped humans who become demagogues and enablers of violence are psychologically infantile. Others are at fault. Extreme victimology. They lack agency.

Their speech can be poor. Not clear. The incitation to hate, contempt, blame, violence is often subtextual.
This is a large part of Donald Trump’s psychology. He is overtly violent, calling for the execution of five innocent kids. He overtly slanders Obama, attacks Kaepernick.

Open attack or violence can result in censure. So Trump cloaks his aggression & harm speech in ambiguity.
Read 12 tweets
7 Jan
Thank you to all the members of the press who broadcasted, took photos, reported and provided a historical record of the mayhem today at the Capitol—in the face of mob violence, death threats, hatred and years of contempt inflamed by a deranged conman.
The scapegoating of the press is one of the most heinous behaviors of Donald Trump. It’s the fascist playbook, delegitimizing the institutions of accountability.
“...the Trump presidency’s unprecedented hostility toward the press...[includes when he] habitually attacked the news media in rallies, responses to reporters’ questions, and many hundreds of tweets...”

A 40-page report on his egregious behavior:

Read 5 tweets
7 Jan
It’s a sickness with old, deep roots.
US Congresswoman at the rally before the mob: “Hitler was right....”
A whole damn thread about all the neo-Nazis who took part in this anti-democratic fascist mob:
Read 4 tweets
5 Jan
Wow. Imagine doubling your revenue in one year like this.

"Peloton...was perfectly situated to meet consumers’ needs when stay-at-home orders went into effect, and its business doubled in 2020, generating $1.8 billion in revenue."

Peloton bought industry leader Precor for $420 million in cash in December. Bike+ delivery times were ten weeks or more, so this should help.

"In September, [Peloton] launched a treadmill [then] announced it was buying Precor, which makes commercial fitness equipment."
"Peloton now has 3.6 million users; 500,000 of them stream content from its app without one of its machines."

WFH = both work from home and workout from home
Read 11 tweets

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