CSotD: Mixed, and mixed-up, messages

Wiley Miller is notably unimpressed with social media, so today’s Non Sequitur (AMS) is no surprise, though for someone who avoids it, he’s sure tapped into the current state of Twitter in particular.

As for leaving, no, the voices won’t let you. I’ve compared it in the past to the interactive TV in “Fahrenheit 451,” which has Montag’s depressed, vacuous wife reading scripted lines in a soap opera and feeling a part of the video experience.

Things we once shared over the back fence, at bridge clubs or bowling leagues, we now share with a global audience on-line: Recipes, photos of our dogs and grandchildren, random poems and observations about the weather.

We are all Mildred Montag, except those of us tasked with burning books, which brings us to Elon Musk, head fireman.

I noted yesterday that Musk may not have overspent for Twitter, since, “If someone wanted to set up a major meeting place for these gullible nitwits and potential terrorists, it might be worth $44 billion to take over a functioning town square and adapt it to that purpose.”

Later that day, I found others echoing the idea, particularly in the wake of Musk’s unhinged call for the prosecution of Anthony Fauci.

The Bulwark’s Jonathan Last asked what it meant, then answered his own question:

While Greg Sargent echoed the notion that Musk is deliberately “triggering the libs” and that arguing with him simply feeds the beast.

It’s not just the old thing about wrestling with a pig, in which you both get muddy and the pig enjoys it, but that any opposition to his postings is seen by his army of trolls, bootlickers and bots as victory in the never-ending war to “own the libs.”

Do not feed the trolls. Especially not the big one.

On a related note, this

Juxtaposition of the Day

(Tjeerd Royaards — Cartoon Movement)


(Bob Gorrell — Creators)

Two disclaimers: The first is that I’m a reader, not a watcher, so my use of Tik Tok — or any video — is extremely minimal. I will watch an actual news report or documentary, but I don’t like having talking heads shoved in my face.

The other is that, while I realize computers have great sorting power, my experiences with surveillance in the ’60s has left me with a strong sense that “the more they gather, the less they can process,” so a lot of the Big Brotherism makes me shrug.

That said, there’s a difference between putting your business in the street locally and putting it in a street in Beijing, and it’s not so much what you say as the doors you open through exposing your contacts.

Not that China, or Russia, or any bad actor, foreign or domestic, couldn’t hack their way into your social media anyway, but it does seem foolish to deliver it on a silver platter.

Which, by the way, might be a good reason to block and unfriend the Mildred Montags who chime in when someone asks your favorite movie or if you remember Captain Kangaroo. They’re not just volunteering themselves for exploitation, but they may also be giving up their entire address book.

Don’t say you were hacked if you simply volunteered.


Juxtaposition of the Day #2

(Matt Davies)


(Gary Varvel — Creators)

The rightwing continues to condemn the return of Brittney Griner, with particular emphasis on her having joined other black athletes in not celebrating the national anthem before games, while her status as an African-American lesbian remains more of a subtext, though it gets said aloud from time to time.

I don’t know that there was a reason to offer Vladimir Putin a crumb of satisfaction, but Davies is correct that the poor old tyrant needed all the positives he could get, given how his glorious special military operation is unfolding.

Setting up Griner, as he did, was a ploy to free Bout before his sentence ran out anyway, though I wonder how many Russians whose sons, lovers and husbands are being drafted to die in Ukraine feel like celebrating.

For that reason, I doubt there’s as much joy in Pottsylvania as Gary Varvel suggests, but I’m impressed with his acknowledgement that Boris and Natasha came “after Elzie Segar,” given that Segar, the creator of Popeye, died in 1938, while the Rocky and Bullwinkle Show debuted in 1959.

Which is undeniably after. Can’t fault him on that.


Waiting between shows for the Sinema girl

There have been a number of cartoons spoofing Kyrsten Sinema’s self-absorbed declaration that she’s leaving the Democratic Party, but Pat Bagley wins the prize for citing her timing, just after Raphael Warnock’s much-watched victory in the Georgia special election.

You might argue that she waited to be sure the majority was established before jumping ship, but, then again, she could have held the announcement until the start of the next session. As it is, her announcement of independence reminds me of Aesop’s story of the fly who apologized to the ox for sitting on his horns and being such a burden, to which the ox answered, “Until you spoke up, I hadn’t noticed you were there.”

It’s not like her loyalty was a major factor in anyone’s planning.


While, as Adam Zyglis points out, there must surely be a few GOP congresscritters who wish they were able to slip the chains from their own necks.

But, to cite a second Aesop fable, it may not be a choice between lean freedom and fat slavery, as demonstrated in our

Juxtaposition of the Day #3

(Pedro X. Molina — Counterpoint)


(Oliver — Cartoon Arts International)

It seems, according to Fortune magazine, that Kyrsten Sinema has been the recipient of some generosity in recent months, and Molina is not the only person to suggest that it may have perhaps tilted her perspective. Their report begins …

… and doesn’t get much better for those of us who wish we could get money out of politics.

Which appears to be more the case overseas, where Qatar is accused of making “donations” to members of the EU Parliament, only the term seems to translate better as “bribes.”

Perhaps the difference is that it’s okay, as long as you play nudge-nudge-wink-wink instead of saying exactly what is expected in exchange.

Or perhaps there is no difference.


2 thoughts on “CSotD: Mixed, and mixed-up, messages

  1. I was kind of appalled about releasing Bout for a basketball player until it was pointed that he’s been out of circulation for 14 years and Russia has no surplus arms to sell anyway. Fair trade.

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