Sunday evening quick thoughts

1. Skeerdykats who sign on to hyperbole
Earlier today I found an article (linked from a Tweet) that alleged that if Hillary Clinton becomes President, she is going to stack the Supreme Court and arrange for the abolition of the 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th, 8th and 10th Amendments.
When I read this kind of “pure terror and fear” commentary being passed around, I can fairly safely conclude that the people signed on to this idea are, to use an old English expression, barking mad. My guess is that they spent way too much time in online echo chambers and watching legendarily objective sources of information such as Fox News. This sort of language, dripping with fear and trepidation, is exactly what I find on talk radio and in online echo chambers. Humans are horribly vulnerable to being impacted by what they just heard or saw.
Frankly, with this level of fear and anxiety, I am surprised that some of these people can even leave home in the mornings.

2. Affirmation and reflection of opinions

A good indication that a website or discussion thread is operating as an echo chamber is the presence of massive cursory agreement of commenters (usually responses like “right on!”, “agreed” etc. etc. ) and the almost complete absence of contrary opinions. On the rare occasions on which people do express contrary views, they are invariably dismissed as “idiots”, “sheeple”, “dupes”, or one of a pantheon of general purpose strawman insults (of which the most popular, among the authoritarian community, is “libtard”).
Here’s the uncomfortable fact about echo chambers that many people need to understand. If you inhabit that sort of environment, then you may feel comfortable and vindicated in your opinions and beliefs. However, it is likely that you will learn nothing while you are in that environment. The most you might get is a greater ability with juvenile put-downs.
Reading simply to have your opinions reflected back at you teaches you nothing. People don’t learn much while in a comfort zone.

3. The Deplorables on Twitter
A while ago I noted in a blog posting that most of the people whose Twitter handle includes some variant of the word “deplorable” were demonstrating, every time they said something on Twitter, that they were unattractive Donald Trump supporters. Specifically they were angry, incoherent, mean-spirited asshats.
I would like to withdraw that comment.
They are deluded angry, incoherent, mean-spirited asshats. They live in a weird parallel universe where black is white, up is down, and Donald Trump wins everything just by turning up.

4. Mike McCoy, we hardly knew ye
I am going out on a limb here to make a prediction that has nothing to do with election season.
If the San Diego Chargers lose next weekend, Mike McCoy will be fired during the team’s bye week. The Chargers are a mess, they lost again today, and ownership has to be seen to be doing something as they struggle to either get a better deal from the city of San Diego, or as they ready for a flight up the coast to Los Angeles.


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