Why You’re Being Kept In A Constant State Of Impotent Rage


The System Will Always Give Us What We Want, And What We Want Is Someone To Blame

Because of who I follow on social media, I get a steady dose of “Capitalism is the problem,” but when pressed, those friends’ complaints almost entirely boil down to “The rich are keeping too much of the money,” not “I want tanks to roll in and seize the factories.” And hey, if you want to raise taxes on the rich, do it. Raise mine, too. Push for a higher minimum wage. But know that mathematically, that doesn’t create the perfectly just system you’re picturing in your head. You can’t, for instance, fund universal healthcare purely with a tax on the rich — let alone free college, more robust welfare, etc.

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As long as you, the consumer, want an ever-expanding selection of affordable comforts available on-demand, there will be a stressed, exhausted, underpaid worker on the other end trying to make it happen (or a robot that just put that person out of work). The goal of the system is to make sure we never feel guilty about that by always giving us someone else to get mad at. Who caused global warming? “The oil companies and their evil shareholders!” Yes, it was definitely them, and not me, the guy who just visited Amazon on my coal-burning computer and ordered an ironic T-shirt manufactured in Bangladesh and told them to overnight it to me via an airliner and a truck that belched clouds of CO2 every step of the way.

That means that in this system, the job of the media is to give you a series of enemies you can hate so that you never realize that call is coming from inside the house — that the evil investors don’t get rich unless you the consumer use the thing they’ve invested in. “They should be required to use green energy!”, we say, but it’s not like we’re going to boycott them until they do. The pressure we apply is limited only to yelling about it.

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So, the media will feed my left-wing friends tales of evil billionaires, ignorant monsters in Trump country, or alt-right harassers. My right-wing family will get headlines about lazy welfare queens, immigrants and Chinese factories taking the good jobs, plus commentary painting themselves as the victim of the greedy tax collectors. The media doesn’t care which of these narratives accurately portray reality; their only agenda is making sure there is endless low-level, risk-free conflict, because their traffic stats prove that’s what we want.

So yes, some white male teenager is being fed a narrative about how SJWs ruined Star Wars because he too needs somewhere to put his self-loathing. Before the world’s greatest blogger The Last Psychiatrist disappeared in 2014, he flexed on all of us with this piece about another prominent woman (writer Amanda Hess) getting harassed online:

“Hess yells about a world of masculine power because she has the power to yell at it. But of course her power is limited only to yelling, she is impotent against a troll who yells at her. But her mistake is in thinking he has the power. No one has it, the system doesn’t allow it … This is the true critique of the system, not simply that one group reliably oppresses another; but that the entire system is based on creating a lack. This lack is not a bottomless hole that nothing could ever fill, but a tiny, strangely shaped divot in your soul into which nothing could ever fit: not money, not sex, not stuff, not relationships. Nothing ‘takes.’ Nothing counts. Nothing is ever right. Only novelty works, until it wears off.