There is no getting through this.
It feels like my brain is on fire. I’m chewing through video games faster than usual because they’re the only thing louder than my thoughts. I’m afraid. I’m constantly terrified.
Not of the virus, though. Most of us are doing the best we can to fend it off. Ultimately, the virus is just nature being nature. It’s scary, but it isn’t malevolent. You wash your hands, you stay home, you keep trips to crowded places at the minimum. The isolation is rough, but you get through it.
The virus isn’t malevolent, but our government is
A huge, powerful, and majority portion of our government is working hard to secure its position for the next few decades. They’re actively working to disenfranchise voters at all possible opportunities. They’ve already used the virus to do so, and there’s already proof of that. We have at least two justices who are very old and who they would easily replace to have a strong majority of they possibly could. And they likely will. They’re playing favorites with basic life essentials and actively undercutting and silencing government medical experts. All the while, they promote snake oil that they have a stake in. They bail out the richest companies while letting the poorest fail. They’re working to dismantle basic services like the USPS, turning even mail into something only the rich can access. They’re giving money to the richest companies and firing the people meant to oversee the stimulus package.
I see headlines say that the president can’t cancel the election, but why can’t he, if he has majority support? Things being illegal has never, ever stopped him. In fact, it’s not hard to imagine that he does some things because they’re illegal and he knows no one can stop him.
What about the slightly nicer pervert?
Meanwhile, the Democratic party continues to pretend like its best candidates don’t exist so that it can front more palatable ones. It puts intelligent, unique people in the back burner to promote a doddering, racist old pervert in hopes that he can defeat the belligerent, evil, racist old pervert. Does anyone really think he can? When both the GOP and the DNC are actively working to put off young voters, does any Democratic nominee have a chance? Unless Biden can run a truly historic campaign, then Trump has already won.
But right now we’re in the middle of a worldwide pandemic, and that only helps trump. No matter how poorly he handles the pandemic, his voters will stick with him. He’s galvanized them. They will vote for him. Meanwhile, whether you like Bernie or Biden, they have to campaign. They have to get the word out. And they can’t campaign or hold rallies when there’s a pandemic because campaigning “for attention” would be terrible optics and having rallies would be wildly dangerous.
We’re going to reelect our blatantly criminal president not through a landslide vote, but by a dearth of voters; people who can’t vote, people who don’t care, people who protest vote, people who are afraid of getting sick, and people who feel already defeated.
Save us, literally no one
Meanwhile, where are the rich that we were promised would save us? Where’s Bezos and Zuckerberg? Micheal Bloomberg bragged to the tune of half a billion dollars about how much he loves this country, but his city is in flames and he’s deadly silent. Where are The Google founders, and the other tech billionaires? Noblesse Oblige has always been a lie, but it’s impossible to miss without some powerful denial shades. You don’t need the sunglasses from They Live to see where things are. You need them to live in blissful ignorance.
And who in the world can come to our aid? Every major world superpower is dangerously corrupt. In fact, it’s hard to deny at this point that they’re superpowers BECAUSE they’re corrupt. Russia, China, and America are the bad guys. The places that put people in cages, who encourage crimes, who engage in propaganda and oppression at a governmental scale. And they’re also the countries with the biggest armies and the most money.
And the virus is still there, too
And even if I’m not scared of the virus, many people have a reason to be. I don’t live in New York City, Shanghai, Tokyo, or Mumbai. I have an apartment in New Brighton. The screaming from next door doesn’t make being in here all the time easy, and being alone is really hard. It’s painful to be alone like this. When I saw that my coffee shop was opening a walk-up menu starting this week, I cried because I miss that place so badly. I miss going to D&D. I miss just walking around Target. I miss the movie theater and my favorite restaurants.
Meanwhile, our retirement homes are a hotbed for the virus; if it gains a foothold in a retirement home, many of those people will die. And so goes for our overcrowded, mostly black and brown prison population, a population that was put there by racist policing that isn’t improving, and are kept there by a system meant to punish rather than rehabilitate. Those men and women are literally trapped in a system they can’t escape and trapped in a building they can’t escape. Again, if the virus sneaks in, it’ll ravage that population. This isn’t even the start of the list.
This is page 1, and I’m so tired.
I’m so angry and scared right now. It feels to me like THERE IS NO GETTING THROUGH THIS. This is the fourth economic recession in my life, and the second one for which I’m an adult. It’s the second time I’ve watched my 401K get ravaged. I don’t get to retire, most likely; every 10 years, 10 years of savings get sucked down the drain by the rich, who continue to get richer, exploiting systems for their gain and no one else’s. This pandemic is unprecedented in our life times. Even our grandparents, even our oldest grandparents aren’t old enough to remember what the 1918 influenza pandemic was like. And even if this pandemic doesn’t claim as many lives — about 50 million — it will make countless tens of millions of lives significantly worse for decades to come.
Real Cyberpunk Sucks
I want to have a positive outlook on this. I really, really do. But I don’t think there is a Make It Through This. This is how the world is now. We’re hurtling toward the cyberpunk future that Blade Runner, Cyberpunk, Neuromancer, and other stories promised us of a world run by corporations, filled with inequality that stretches out the gap between have and have not in ways we’ve never seen. But the thing about those stories is that they’re never about what it’s like to live in a hyper-polluted world with unmanageable inequality and unmitigated debt. We’re not going to get flying cars or androids that look like people. Not even robot arms. Just flat phones. We gave up a bright future and all we got were these flat light-up phones.
I don’t know what to do to make it through this. I don’t know if there IS a Make It Through, because I think this is Just How Things Are Now. It feels like my brain is on fire and it feels like it’s ALWAYS going to be on fire.
And there’s snow on the ground. Fuck that.
Postal Service says it’s going broke due to pandemic, Trump flatly opposes emergency aid — ABC News — https://abcn.ws/2ybWNbo
US Postal Service investigating issues with absentee ballots in Wisconsin that went undelivered https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/elections/2020/04/10/usps-investigating-undelivered-wisconsin-absentee-ballot-issues/5135563002/
Trump undercuts Fauci (and hints at authoritarianism) https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/13/politics/trump-coronavirus-defense-fauci/index.html
Financial Recessions from Great Depression onward: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_recessions_in_the_United_States#Great_Depression_onward
Biden on White People vs Poor People https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/biden-poor-kids-white-kids/
Joe Biden is a Toucher https://www.vox.com/2019/4/2/18290345/joe-biden-lucy-flores-amy-lappos
Joe Biden’s difficulty speaking: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/30/us/politics/joe-biden-debate-gaffes.html
“We’re all going to get sick eventually”: Amazon workers are struggling to provide for a nation in quarantine https://www.theverge.com/2020/3/20/21188292/amazon-workers-coronavirus-essential-service-risk
1918 Pandemic (H1N1 virus) | Pandemic Influenza (Flu) | CDC https://www.cdc.gov/flu/pandemic-resources/1918-pandemic-h1n1.html