The political and news establishment is, for the most part, failing to comprehend the change of an era.
So much is changing in our lives, our politics, our society, but so many old, empty, tedious rituals remain. In many cases, that is only apparent in the small banalities: “…we now bring you live coverage of XY party’s election headquarters,” it says on television, and as soon as the assembled party members notice that the camera is directed at them, they change their facial expressions from despondency to false chants of victory. Then the people from the second and third rows come up and are allowed to say a few platitudes. Dull, dull, dull. That goes for the politics as well as most of the reporting.
There is a war in Europe. A Russian despot who has gone off the rails is threatening to use nuclear weapons. Fascism undeniably leads into a ditch, and the people in Italy have chosen fascism. In theocratic Iran, young women who no longer want their lives to be circumscribed by sinister old men are being gunned down. In Brazil, a fascist is burning down the rain forest and inciting his armed supporters to not accept an election defeat. In the U.S., a former president and a large portion of his party are working toward de facto abolition of the right of people of color to vote, and of democracy.
Our lives will not continue to be as they were before. Much of the political and journalistic world sense it but are overwhelmed and retreat behind old rituals. That is a fatal denial of reality.
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