How to Stop Those Tweets

Girls, Are You Wearing Stiletto Heels?

I figure if we can get a troupe of Mexican dancers to render the Trumpf’s tiny hands inoperable by dancing on them with their stiletto heels, the people of the United States would breathe a sigh of relief. Never before has a president’s unedited prejudices gone straight from his putative brain out to the world at large without any editing.  Things have come to such a pass that I think it were best of Twitter were put out of business.

It’s not just covfefe that worries me: Trumpf and Kim Jong-Un of the DPRK are waging a constantly escalating war of threats that could take us to the brink of nuclear war. I am worried less about what Kim could do to us than what China and Russia would do if we attacked North Korea. Even now, we are sending bombers in international airspace just east of the Korean peninsula.

Our president is so out of control that no one can rein him in. Even Kelly and his other generals are helpless when Trumpf is alone at night with one hand on his cell phone and the other on the launch button.

So let’s get the Mexican dancers out there. It would be most appropriate.

The White Savior Industrial Complex

Poverty in South Africa

I am not one to like Twitter, especially as misused by the Trumpf as a way to short-circuit rational discourse. Sometimes, it is good to have one’s ideas overturned, in this case by a talented writer/photographer named Teju Cole. Although born in the U.S., Cole was raised in Nigeria and returned to this country to attend college. The following is a series of Tweets written under the name @tejucole that were published by The Atlantic in 2012. The subject? The White Savior Industrial Complex. Here are the tweets, min order:

1- From Sachs to Kristof to Invisible Children to TED, the fastest growth industry in the US is the White Savior Industrial Complex.
2- The white savior supports brutal policies in the morning, founds charities in the afternoon, and receives awards in the evening.
3- The banality of evil transmutes into the banality of sentimentality. The world is nothing but a problem to be solved by enthusiasm.
4- This world exists simply to satisfy the needs—including, importantly, the sentimental needs—of white people and Oprah.
5- The White Savior Industrial Complex is not about justice. It is about having a big emotional experience that validates privilege.
6- Feverish worry over that awful African warlord. But close to 1.5 million Iraqis died from an American war of choice. Worry about that.
7- I deeply respect American sentimentality, the way one respects a wounded hippo. You must keep an eye on it, for you know it is deadly.

Teju Cole

These seven Tweets showed that the medium has the capability of carrying on discourse rather than just shutting it down. But then, not everyone is as witty and perspicacious as Teju Cole. I will write more about him as I investigate his books and photography.

@unrealDonaldTrumpf

Why Isn’t There Any Bird Crap on This Man’s Shoulder?

Why Isn’t There Any Bird Crap on This Man’s Shoulder?

The following are fake Donald Trumpf tweets from the New Yorker of January 27, 2017:

@realDonaldTrump
Weak Hamlet should stop moaning about past and get on with his life. All talk, no action! King Claudius has my full support.

@realDonaldTrump
Tremendously fat honey thief Winnie-the-Pooh deserves to get stuck in Rabbit’s hole. Not crying for him, believe me, OR low-energy Eeyore.

@realDonaldTrump
Successful businessmen should be left alone by boring ghosts and sad employees. Bob Cratchit is a loser. No enthusiasm!

@realDonaldTrump
Little Miss Muffet doesn’t deserve curds OR whey if she can’t deal with a bug. No strength or stamina and her tuffet is a disgrace.

@realDonaldTrump
Anyone who thinks a good relationship with Mordor is a bad thing is stupid. And crooked Frodo should return ring to rightful owner.

@realDonaldTrump
Wolf well within rights to evict disgusting pigs from below-code structures.

@realDonaldTrump
Overrated king’s horses and men are failed élites. Humpty Dumpty deserves better and will get it after Obamacare repeal.

@realDonaldTrump
Very Little Jack Horner’s biggest accomplishment: putting in thumb, pulling out plum. Sad!

@realDonaldTrump
Stepsisters deserve compensation for loss of employee. Shame on you, prince!

@realDonaldTrump
Better British schools and Hogwarts would fail on its own. Instead, England has disastrous witch problem. I WON’T LET IT HAPPEN HERE!!!

Ideo-Bursts and Promisoids

The Whole Medium Is IMHO Suspect

The Whole Medium Is IMHO Suspect

About a year ago, I signed up for Twitter. But then, when I found out I was supposed to “follow” three existing Twitter accounts, I suddenly lost interest, so I never finished my application. About once a week, Twitter e-mails me to finalize my application … but I never will.

Why? A certain Prezidenchul candidate has adopted Twitter as his preferred method of communicating with the world, and I suddenly saw what was wrong with the whole setup. Standing at the microphone (broken or not), Donald Trump thinks in limited bursts of thought that are compatible with the character limit on tweets. He jumps from one tweet-length position to another. This effectively prevents him for discussing such nasty things as details that may substantiate his short ideo-bursts.

On the other hand, these same tweets endear him to his fans, who are not into such mundane things as facts. They are, if anything, practitioners of identity politics: Trump re-connects with his base, and since they identify with him, that connection is all that counts.

When you go into details, you could wind up betraying your base. So, the idea is to just skip around, making short promisoids without pinning himself down on any one of them. Promisoids good, facts bad!

So I think I will never complete my Twitter application process. And here, in considerably more than 140 characters, is why.

 

Downbeat on Tweet

Do I Really Care?

#WTFDoICare

Several months ago, I started signing up for Twitter. When I was asked to name three Twitter accounts I was interested in following, I couldn’t think of a single one. I just wasn’t that interested in following anyone. And what would I tweet? There was that 140-character limitation that encouraged users to murder the English language. And when Twitter and tweets were in the news, they were usually from political or entertainment figures like Donald Trump or Kim Kardashian—on whom I do not care to waste my time.

What is more, that whole hashtag convention struck me as forcing one’s thoughts into other people’s channels. Nope, not for me.