Commentary

Rage war

rage

“Political Polarization on Twitter”/M.D. Conover et al

 

Anger has become the currency of social media.

This is not something new. Scientists at Beihang University in China identified and then documented the phenomenon on Weibo, a Chinese version of Twitter, a half decade ago.

The anger only seems to have grown since.

Against this backdrop, what this country needs is a National Argue The Other Side Day. Once a month might not be bad for starters.

We might all learn something from this exercise if nothing other than that there are two (or more) sides to every argument. But there is likely to be a lot more than that learned. It’s amazing what people discover when they start looking at things in new ways.

What we’re learning now is nothing.

We’re still badly bogged down in the anger of that social media battleground Rui Fang and others at Beihang documented in 2013.

After their study came out, the virus spreading through the tubes was the subject of some discussion.

“The Internet isn’t making us dumb. It’s making us angry,” the Washington Post headlined.

“Anger is the Internet’s most powerful emotion,” reported USA Today.

And MIT Technology Review offered this advice:

“The moral of the story is that when it comes to the spread of information, anger is more powerful than other emotions. So if you want to spread your message, let that inner rage out.”

Trumped

Three years later, the country elected president the maddest man on Twitter – Donald Trump. Apparently someone was listening to the folks at MIT.

Since the election, many have joined President Trump in loosing their inner rage.

Now Trump writes an inflammatory Tweet. Others re-Tweet the Tweet. The opposition starts firing off angry counter-Tweets. The counter-Tweets get re-Tweeted.

The arguments spread to Facebook and people rage.

American politics has become European Christianity in the 16th and 17th centuries. My party is god; your party is the devil.

Much of the discussion between the sides lacks substance. If you follow any of these eruptions, you’ll soon notice people entering the fray who don’t even know what the discussion is about. They are simply reacting to someone else’s reaction somewhere without bothering to determine whether it connects to anything rational.

As a result, online discussions go wandering off into the weeds where arguments grow more heated and the name-calling increases and the interactions spin downhill from worse to worse.

The time people spend on this, the energy people put into this, the sheer volume of words produced is astounding.

“If we would like to transmit the amount of broadcasted information with the help of newspapers, we would have had to deliver 55 newspapers per person per day in 1986, and 175 newspapers per person per day by 2007,” Martin Hilbert at the University of Southern California calculated in 2012  study.

God only knows how what volume of newspaper equivalents we are up to today.

Overload

Given the volume, it’s hard to avoid wondering how much of the anger is compounded by simple, old-fashioned information overload.

“Information overload is a decisive factor driving negative work environments [that] are killing productivity, dampening creativity, and making people unhappy,'”  Peter Gordon Roetzel observed in a review of various studies on the subject published in Business Research in July.

Roetzel described “information overload as a virus spreading through (social) media and news networks.

“…People often act irrationally by infecting others (i.e., sending more messages, likes, news to other members of their network) instead of sparing themselves (i.e., making a rest/recovery from their overloaded status).

“The intensive use of social media and the steady exposition to information overload might cause emotional, mental and physical effects….”

In other words, people end up stressed, which fogs thinking; and fearful, which pushes them into tribes for security; and in the end they become angry partisans.

Or worse.

It’s hard to forget Corey Akerelrea from Scammon Bay, a remote village in far Western Alaska. He was a bright, 17-year-old whose computer enabled him to interact with people all over the world in ways both good and horribly tragic in the end.

He was a video gamer who got flamed and deprssed and eventually committed suicide, a tragedy he documented up until the next to last moment on Twitter.

“I’m gone now” was his last Tweet.

Twitter is a social media platform that has been specifically singled out for study for its ability to polarize.

“Our experience with this body of data suggests that the content of political discourse on Twitter remains highly partisan,” M. D. Conover and colleagues at the University of Indiana  pointed out in 2011. “Many messages contain sentiments more extreme than you would expect to encounter in face-to-face interactions, and the content is frequently disparaging of the identities and views associated with users across the partisan divide….these interactions might actually serve to exacerbate the problem
of polarization by reinforcing pre-existing political biases.”

Sounman Hong and Sun Hyoung extended those observations to other social media in a 2016 study published in “Government Information Quarterly.” They examined the behaviors of the members of the U.S. House of Representatives and how their views played with their constituents.

The highlights (or should these be lowlights) of that study:

  • Politicians with extreme ideological positions have more Twitter followers.
  • Social media may contribute to heightened levels of political extremism.
  • Political polarization may be especially problematic in social media.

“We have met the enemy and he is us,” as Pogo, the late Walt Kelly’s comic strip creation, observed as he overlooked a swamp at the dawn of Earth Day in 1970.

Now the country is overlooking a swamp of partisanship that seems to grow more by day as it feeds on the fuel of the American nature.

“Americans love a winner. Americans will not tolerate a loser,” the late Gen. George S. Patton observed. “Americans play to win all of the time….the very idea of losing is hateful to an American.”

Or as Trump told the midshipmen graduating the Naval Academy this year:

“Winning is such a great feeling, isn’t it? Winning is such a great feeling. Nothing like winning; you got to win.”

The problem is that democracies function not on any one side winning every election or  the inevitable debates over policy, but on the collective winning a consensus with which all can live. That wasn’t easy before the internet invaded the not-always-so-United States of America.

And it seems to be getting harder day by day.

When Barrack Obama was president, we had a defeated Sarah Palin telling Republicans, “Don’t retreat, reload,” and now that Trump is president we have a defeated Hillary Clinton telling Democrats that if they win “back the House and/or the Senate, that’s when civility can start again.”

Until then? Rage, rage, rage.

Now, feel free to vent your anger at the suggestion rage is not the most productive of emotions.

Update: This story was updated from the original version on Oct. 22, 2018 to include a link to a story about Corey Akerelrea.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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43 replies »

  1. A little late here but I think there is a significant difference between posting anonymously and under one’s “public” name (actual name).
    Something Craig could do is have a separate comment/debate platform for real names. Craig could also have a separate Debate platform where Craig selects the best arguments from both sides of an issue.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chris,
      Good ideas there…
      I am thinking from now on, I will no longer respond to the anonymous handles (no matter how they try to incite argument)…we have NO idea who these folks are, wether they are in U.S., China, Russia, Saudi or if they are even real people or just “cyber” bots programmed to banter out our original thoughts.
      I do not always agree with you, but I do like that you have original perspectives on the problems at hand.
      These anonymous handles play on semantics, and old opinions more than offer any solutions or paths forward through the issues.
      Thanks.

      Like

  2. Another thought provoking article, Craig. It bears consideration that we could all stand to be a little more polite and respectful with our commentary.

    I can’t help but think that the anonymity of the Internet brings out the worst in most of us, and we often write things that we would never say in person.

    Liked by 1 person

      • Opinion,
        You did notice that Jason said : “anonymity of the Internet brings out the worst in most of us”…
        Something that I strongly believe is true, yet you have argued for anonymity, and have even used two anonymous handles on one story?
        Seems like the veins of hypocrisy run deep in AK this fall?
        Not looking to argue, just pointing out a blatant contradiction of the facts.

        Like

      • steve , I heavily agree with what Jason says in his statement above . You may have over simplified it’s meaning . Thus the misunderstanding of “facts” Thus there is no hipocrisy from my end . He didn’t specifically argue against anonymity. He argued for respect . He did in part lay disrespect at the feet of internet anonymity with clarification that it’s his opinion these people would not verbally abuse each other in person as they are probably much kinder inside and internet somehow brings out meanness . I agree with that as well . I also sincerely think anonymity is fine as long as it’s not abused to hurt people or tell lies becouse it can make a person more free to share their thoughts without retribution. As well as in my opinion it makes the transfer of info more pure as it doesn’t have preconceived links from who it comes from . That’s just my opinion. Hopefully I transferred these thoughts to you in a form that’s understandable.

        Like

      • Steve , Jason also used clarifyers most = (some)and often = (not always) that also alows space against your mention of hypocrisy and why I can completely agree with his statement yet use a handle. Make sense?

        Like

    • Well, I certainly didn’t mean to imply that there is anything wrong with anonymity, especially on the Internet. Lot of creepy people out there, and personal security is a very important consideration. My point, to clarify, had more to do with the fact that people’s more antagonistic/mouthy/nasty sides can be easily put on display on an Internet forum than if we were all in a room having the same discussion face to face. Plenty of awful things are written with no fear of repercussion by folks who would never have the sack to say the same things in person. Also, a lot or even most of the nuance conveyed by tone of voice, body language and facial expression, tools that we use to “soften the tone” is completely lost on a forum, so there are plenty of simple mis-understandings, too.

      I try really hard to extend the benefit of the doubt to people but lord knows that it’s hard to do, and much MUCH easier to be cruel, rude and dismissive.

      Like

    • Indeed, the anonymity the internet provides is the same anonymity that a large city provides. When your face is yet another face in the crowd who care, when your name is yet another name in the crowd who cares? The true measure of a man or woman, is what he or she, does when nobody is watching.

      Signing your given name on an internet forum with people you do not know is like handing out your business card with your personal information on it while onboard a crowded subway. Even the crazy people riding crowded subways aren’t in the business of handing out business cards with their personal information on it.

      There are some crazy people on every website I’ve ever been on, some decent folks, even some nice ones, and there’s always an asshole or two or five thousand. What you do with your internet anonymity is all you, whether you use your given name or a made up name.

      Like

  3. I’ve come to conclude that despite the the masthead’s entreaty, there are few ‘readers and (especially) thinkers’ that contribute here. This site seems to be more of coffee klatch in terms of followers than anything else. Mostly populated by guys that seem to not work or have anything better to do other than give the best one-up they can come up with. Speaking to the title of the above, It’s my belief that America has a serious ‘male’ problem and this particular essay does a magnificent job of explaining its underpinnings:

    https://heisenbergreport.com/2018/10/22/it-is-the-eleventh-hour-for-white-american-males/

    Like

    • Monk, what reasons do you have for believing those statistics shown in your linked report? No credit was given for especially those men without a job and I must have missed the footnotes that may have in copy I read.
      The numbers don’t seem believable to me, either. Although if they are shown to be correct, they would indeed explain some of the ‘male’ problem.

      Like

      • Bill,
        This is not just a “men without work” situation in America…
        What we are also seeing is a return to an “Agrarian Lifestyle” in many parts of Alaska as well as pockets in the lower 48 and Hawaii.
        Building your own home, gardening, hunting and fishing, gathering firewood, off the grid lifestyles…
        These activities all take time and labor…
        Home Schooling is also gaining popularity in many areas, so the solution is one parent in the workforce and one parent/partner at home.
        I would agrue this lifestyle is actually stronger and more environmentally sustainable.
        We also have more folks “Tele Commuting” from home like my neighbor who sells stocks online and homeschools his two boys while his wife works as a nurse in the community.
        Obviously, this is not the same as sitting on a couch all day and selling illegal contraband in an urban setting….
        Many seperate ways of life at play currently in America and each group further seperated from each other.

        Like

      • And Steve, are you thinking that it’s predominantly African Americans and Native Americans that are doing those things (homeschooling, gardening, etc.) you are suggesting is what’s driving this NILF, too??

        Like

      • Steve, do you think this Cesar Sayoc was an NILF who was returning to an “Agrarian Lifestyle?”
        I’m thinking he may have been contemplating gardening, hunting and fishing, building a home and gathering firewood. Heheh!
        I’m just having a bit of fun with your position that we are returning to an “Agrarian Lifestyle.”
        This Sayoc character seems to fit as someone who regularly was/is NILF and he is also Native American.
        You didn’t respond to my earlier post about a large percentage of these NILFs are Native American and African American, so I’m not holding my breath for a response here, either.

        Like

      • Bill: How about we show a little restraint until facts are clear? Sayoc was involved with a couple businesses he apparently called Native this and Native that.

        I have seen nothing to indicate he was a Native American, as that terms is used in Alaska. He might have been a native American.

        There is no indication race – Native American, African American or whatever he is – had anything to do with this.

        Like

      • Craig, I believe the Seminole Tribe said he was not a member though he (Sayoc) considered himself to be one. https://www.miamiherald.com/latest-news/article220680590.html And, of course, he may not have as much Native Blood as Pocahontus so would not be considered Native American by Steve-O but frankly none of that has a thing to do with why I posted that comment. And I said nothing about his being Native American having anything to do with these events.
        My posting had to do with large numbers of Native Americans and African Americans being NILF (not in the labor force), that Steve suggested was due to folks getting into an “Agrarian lifestyle.” He ignored my earlier posting about it and has so far ignored this one, too which is fine. At any rate, while he may/may not have been Native American he clearly identified with them and that may be enough to become another NILF.

        Like

      • This article makes a shocking number of assumptions without precise clarification. It doesn’t explain why these men choose not to work or what causes their situation exactly. Though it does make a pretty clear picture why trumps time came . As well as why kayne West is right . The need to provide local hands on jobs and raise wages and attract these men back into work force . Per bills article that would allow the assumption society would gain benefit from more higher paid hands on rough labor jobs . NAFTA and excessive illegal immigration has cut into wage value . Some one who comes into this country is more likely to take any job that can get at any wage . Effectively they have put themselves into almost slavery status becouse the employer has more power . That’s why many very rich people are fine with illegal immigrants . Such as the Koch brothers. Or Jeff bezos ,Open border lovers . They want to keep dirt cheap labor that government covers cost of . Others are just unaware that open borders undermines wages and entering America illegally puts those people at such a huge disadvantage for getting higher paid work. As well as reduced wages paid to standard citizens. It’s a bad circle . If immigrants were aware of how much better life can be by entering through legal methods they probably would except criminals of course. As to our current nonsense border drama a wall is foolish. Who cares if 7k more people come in ? A few more makes no difference. It’s just drama for the news . Talking points. It’s far more intelligent in my opinion to apply our efforts towards peace and carefully and scientifically apply our dollars to upgrade our neighbors economy. I’m not talking about aid . That’s just temporary and probably a waste. A long term solution -investment in a scientific manner so money and time not wasted- incentives? Apply science in some form . A wall will just make smuggling profitable. Very short sighted. IMO . Stupid as prohibition or asinine as war on drugs. Those create corruption violence and choas . Make them free and undercut the criminals profits is better . I say it’s enormously beneficial to have strong friendly neighbors who could return favors if needed. Yeah I get a bit carried away with opinions. I’m sure you will all work to shut me up : )

        Like

      • “This article makes a shocking number of assumptions without precise clarification. It doesn’t explain why these men choose not to work or what causes their situation exactly.”
        What are these “shocking assumptions” you speak of?
        And further, the article is merely giving the facts about these NILFs and it’s not like these males have been interviewed as in say those applying for unemployment benefits. These statistics are produced, without much said about where they came from, and thus are not as set in concrete as BLS statistics about employed and unemployed (seeking work). Thus, any determination about “why they choose not to work”, would pretty clearly be just an assumption and this author has avoided that.
        As to what causes their situation, I believe this article specifically mentions the issue ex-cons have with finding employment.

        Like

      • Bill as to your question what are these assumptions? First one definition of assumption means taking something for granted per on line definition. ( the act of taking something for granted ) In The Article you linked the assumptions start in the very first paragraph . Paragraph 3 -5 they start to really stack up and then proceed on through the article. Many may be correct or not ,but there is little information to back up the assumptions. Or to clarify or proove what the author takes for granted. There are way to many for me to begin a discussion on them in the time I have . The simplest assumption ,to just show one is the author declaring in a paragraph heading “Why doesn’t this seem to bother us ?” I give you that for a very simple example of assumption because he obviously has no idea what his audience or readers think so to assume something doesn’t bother them is extreme assumption as he has no way of proving that . Bill Hopefully I was able to transfer my meaning to you without confusion. My apologies if I am unable.

        Like

      • I’m going to make an assumption here, Rayme: Namely the author by using the term us, means us collectively and not us as individual readers of his article. And that is based on the fact that we (collectively) are doing very little to correct it.
        My own admission here is that frankly, I haven’t even been aware that it was a problem. I do know that in Alaska we have been attempting to keep some first-time offenders out of prisons because that is such a problem for those individuals. And we are seeing some backlash to these attempts.

        Like

  4. There are always a few who think that they can out yell or cuss away anybody else’s opinion, even on these pages. I think those people should be challenged but have all the freedom to share their anger as there is no greater disinfectant than sunlight. Nothing further destroys your point more than berating and swearing at the person you disagree with. Let them wallow in their own filth and hatred while those of us who are capable of rational civil discussion point out that their words and actions aren’t welcome.

    Like

    • Occasionally it needs to be pointed out to those “who are capable of rational civil discussion” that they are full of shit, Steve-O. No filth or hatred, either. Simple truth and rational, to boot.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Ladies and gentlemen, may I introduce a man who needs no introduction….Bill Yankee!!!!!

        The problem you have Bill, is that when you disagree with someone you call bullshit. Repeatedly, over and over, time and time again Bill Yankee says bullshit, we get it. You don’t try to have a conversation or explain your viewpoint you just call bullshit, as if that somehow settles it and makes your point. You should at least tryout another word or two, come on man, be creative use your vocabulary. Your bullshit calling has lost its punch it’s just old sloppy shit slinging. But then maybe that’s all you have in your grab bag of insults, just a bunch of worthless shit to sling.

        Did I say shit enough for you Bill, did it somehow make my point, did it help you understand what I wrote better?

        Like

    • Steve-O…
      Glad you consider yourself the one who is capable of “rational civil discussion”.
      But, from what I have noticed, your comments are seldom “liked” by others?
      I was taught to not give respect until it is earned…
      As for “cleaning up” this site, that is not up to you, since Craig has chosen to make this a home for readers and thinkers…
      I personally feel if real names were required many of the rats would scurry back into the shadows.

      Like

  5. “It’s amazing what people discover when they are start looking at things in new ways.”
    .
    One wonders what “new ways” will legitimize an ideology which includes the declared intent to destroy the borders, language, and culture that define America, depose a duly elected president, kill babies at taxpayer expense, while giving aid, comfort, and cash to America’s avowed enemies.
    .
    Saul Alinsky said, “The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition.”
    .
    In other words, the Left may be running out of “things” to justify its agenda.
    .
    So, an elegant solution to regain control of the argument might be vilifying Americans’ angry reaction to the intentional destruction of their country…
    .
    then demanding angry Americans who don’t want the radical Left to destroy their country make amends by having a “National Argue The Other Side Day” to argue, on behalf of the radical Left, for destroying their country!
    .
    Now that’s “pressure”.

    Like

    • I surely love your concern about “depose a duly elected president.”
      You seem to think a “duly elected president” is above the law-perhaps you’d like to give us your reasons?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Bill,
        I was thinking the same thing about Trump (who did not receive a majority of U.S. populace votes, but was “carried” through the electoral college system).
        What we are seeing today is the “Uber Rich” defining politics as they see fit, avoiding critical questions and tax records…attacking writers or media who investigates anything and advancing their global corporate agendas and policies. (On federal, state and local levels)…
        Anyone who disagrees or feels “left out” is marginalized, attacked, and ignored or worse?
        Chris Hedges just wrote:
        “Once the uber-rich take over, Aristotle writes, the only options are tyranny and revolution. They do not know how to nurture or build. They know only how to feed their bottomless greed. It’s a funny thing about the uber-rich: No matter how many billions they possess, they never have enough.”
        “It is essential to understand the pathologies of the uber-rich. They have seized total political power. These pathologies inform Donald Trump, his children, the Brett Kavanaughs, and the billionaires who run his administration. The uber-rich cannot see the world from anyone’s perspective but their own. People around them, including the women whom entitled men prey upon, are objects designed to gratify momentary lusts or be manipulated. The uber-rich are almost always amoral. Right. Wrong. Truth. Lies. Justice. Injustice. These concepts are beyond them. Whatever benefits or pleases them is good. What does not must be destroyed.”

        https://www.truthdig.com/articles/the-rule-of-the-uber-rich-means-either-tyranny-or-revolution/

        Like

      • So Steve, Kavanaugh is “uber rich”? Sheesh! How about the leftists who demand everybody see the world through their blurry goggles? How about not being able to sit down for a steak or a night on the town without those leftist disrupting your meal DEMANDING you think like they do. I believe those leftists killed over 100 million people who didn’t think like they did the last Century alone. Trump this or Trump that.. Get over it, other than Reagan, he has been the best President we have seen during our lifetime.

        Like

      • Populace vote? Trump wasn’t carried by anything. He won like any other President. Steve, once again we are a CONSTITUTIONAL REPUBLIC AND NOT A DEMOCRACY!!!!! Sheesh, I feel like I am stalking you here but, you write so many things that are wrong they deserve a response.

        “Obama Prosecuted More Journalists THAN ALL PRESIDENTS COMBINED!
        Barack Obama was a media wrecking ball, as he had the media paralyzed in fear to talk. Remember when Obama declared his administration “scandal free?”

        Recently on CNN’s “Reliable Sources,” Journalist Glenn Greenwald alluded to the hypocrisy of Democrats when it comes to government leaks.
        If you look at the last eight years, there has been a very concerted war on not just sources and whistleblowers, but also journalists, implemented by not Donald Trump but by the Obama administration.

        More sources prosecuted under the 1917 Espionage Act than in all previous administrations combined.

        Journalists such as James Rosen at Fox News and Jim Risen at The New York Times and those of us who worked on the Snowden reporting constantly threatened with prosecution or having our phone records subpoenaed and the like. And Democratic officeholders in D.C. were virtually unanimous in the idea that people who leak information that’s classified are villains, they’re traitors, they oughta go to prison.”

        Like

  6. Steve, let’s put it in gumballs to help you understand. The “anger” comes from those who are unable to understand common sense.

    Like

  7. How can a sane person not be a little angry? To think this stooge even received votes.
    “Democratic Socialist candidate for the House of Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said in a video that reaching the goal of 100 percent renewable energy to fight climate change requires the same urgency and mobilization in the United States as it did to fight Nazi Germany during World War II.

    Calling Nazi Germany the last “existential threat” the United States has faced, Ocasio-Cortez ignored more recent threats, including radical Islam’s attack on U.S soil that killed almost 3,000 innocent Americans on September 11, 2001.

    “So when we talk about existential threats — the last time we had a really major existential threat in this country was around World War II,”

    Like

  8. Craig,
    I think that Super Pac money is making your thought process blurred…
    Now you are citing communist university studies to explain current anger in the U.S.A.?
    What about the Saudi Arabian governments “dismemberment ” of Jamal Khashoggi in their embassy in Turkey?
    Or Trump’s inability to confront global dictators on their actions and blatant human rights infractions?
    There are more and more journalists killed every year and those that attempt to discuss our wars in the middle east or the current “Congressional Milatary Industrial Complex” are shunned out of the industry.
    Citing communist regimens as to why people are dissatisfied is very disingenuous and a lie.
    How about the 1 million Muslim Slaves currently in China?
    How does Beihang University feel about that?
    How about the silencing of dissent in China with online filters?
    The Internet is a modern vehicle to vent frustrations, but not the root cause of Anger by any means.
    Ancient Norse cultures were not “online” yet they killed, raped and pillaged those they encountered…many of the captured were made slaves to “row the boats” and further the pursue of terror.
    What we are seeing is a loss of democracy and a global shift to corporate authoritarian oligarchy….
    A system where the “outliers” need to be attacked, discredited and pushed back to their menial low paying jobs.
    Just like Orwellian Society where we have “Prols” and “Party” members….
    The party members think all is OK and the system is working, where the prols are stuck in debate, protest and confrontations to attempt to raise up wages, living conditions and general “well being”.
    The instruments of War may have changed, but our stratified culture is nothing new, neither will be the further fracturing of society into smaller tribal bands…
    This country is no longer just Blue and Red, but many shades of Purple and even pockets of Green along the coasts…

    Like

    • Um, now that is a good one Steve. How soon you forget the feckless Obama years of appeasement. How about Obama killing US Citizens without due process. Where would you rank that on Human Rights violations? Granted, during the Kavanaugh Hearings we saw that Due Process means nothing to the Left, but come on. The problem is Democrats align themselves more with two bit dictators then American values. We know you hate Trump because he steps all over Political Correctness but, to ignore Obama’s weak, harmful foreign policy is laughable. Here, now read your words again. Silly no?
      “Or Trump’s inability to confront global dictators on their actions and blatant human rights infractions?”
      Take this whole caravan mess instigated by Democrats. The difference is you either identify these illegals as “freedom fighters” and that no country should have borders or you believe in borders and see this organized hord as an invasion of criminals spitting on our laws. I think it is fair to assume which group the Democrats belong in. I mean, just looks at the Dems stepping up to stop it.

      Like

      • “THE SUSPECTED MURDER of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi Arabia is pushing the U.S. government toward a major internal confrontation over its role in the war in Yemen, one that could have significant consequences for a Saudi-led, U.S.-backed intervention that has exacerbated the world’s worst humanitarian crisis…
        On Monday, 55 members of Congress, led by Reps. Mark Pocan, D-Wis., and Ro Khanna, D-Calif., wrote to the director of national intelligence, Dan Coats, asking whether the intelligence community knew about a plot to apprehend Khashoggi ahead of time, and whether the U.S. government fulfilled its “duty to warn” him.”

        https://theintercept.com/2018/10/22/jamal-khashoggi-saudi-arabia-yemen-congress/

        Like

  9. Corporate capitalism has become the autocracy of America. Social media helps vent all the anger, that builds, when the populace, realizes they are no longer in control of their own destiny.
    Humans beings can be very mean to one another, and the digital age, has helped that along. Everyone is hooked, linked and absorbed, by their personal wireless devices.
    On another note:
    Once the mid-term elections are over, the stress will be realeased. These national elections, every two years, brings out the best and worst in our society. This is what we call participatory democracy, does it still works? Answer, with a Question? What % of the voting age public, is actually voting? Around 58%. At least we are over .500! No anger here, only stating the facts. Alaska, get out there and vote! A duty and a right!

    Liked by 1 person

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