Daily Bread for 8.15.22: The Errors of Very Online and Hyperlocal

Good morning.

Monday in Whitewater will be partly sunny with a high of 73. Sunrise is 6:02 AM and sunset 7:56 PM for 13h 53m 51s of daytime.  The moon is a waning gibbous with 84.3% of its visible disk illuminated. 

 Whitewater’s Library Board meets at 6:30 PM

 On this day in 1965, The Beatles play to nearly 60,000 fans at Shea Stadium in New York City, an event later regarded as the birth of stadium rock.

 David French observes this of a ‘Very Online’ culture: 

The core of the Trump movement is Very Online, and like all Very Online movements it jumps on talking points and messages that can seem weird and wrong to normal folks offline. Defunding or dismantling the FBI is not something normal folks will buy.

That’s right: too much time inside a hothouse leads to crafting newer, more controversial positions to maintain attention within that environment. 

The hyperlocal politics of small towns, both before and after social media began, has a similar tendency. There’s too much time spent thinking about what a few other people in town might think, and not enough time focused on the relationship between local issues and broader forces. 

Very Online focuses one’s thinking on ever more extreme positions among a cyber-obsessed group, and hyperlocalism in town politics focuses one’s thinking on too few people even in a small community. 

One of the surest ways to spot failure in local politics is governance by press release, where genuine accomplishments are replaced with grandiose statements about limited achievements. Awesome isn’t a policy. It’s an adjective. 

In online communities, a few attention-seekers adopt views outside widespread acceptability (leading to bizarre positions). In small towns, a few stodgy residents advance views more restrictive than widespread acceptability (leading to stultifying positions). 

 See merging galaxies close-up in stunning Gemini North telescope 4K zoom-in:

Travel 60 million light-years away into the constellation Virgo to catch a glimpse of interacting galaxies NGC 4568 and NGC 4567. The imagery of the galactic mash-up was captured by the Gemini North telescope in Hawaii.

Full Story:… Credit: International Gemini Observatory/NOIRLab/NSF/AURA

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1 year ago

[…] See Link to Podcast Audio File.  […]

Catching up on missed posts
1 year ago

Thanks for sharing this. This followed by a somewhat unproductive interweb search inspired a “hold” placed through local library of French’s most recent book as I remain staunchly in the non-Twitter camp. Mostly because I’ve never had the patience to invest enough time to make the platform worthwhile to me personally.

Call me curious, but I’d be interested in book recommendations from time to time. One can never read too many books.