Unplugging from the Internet
Going Offline for a Few Days at the Beach...
Unplugging from the Internet during a recent beach vacation reminded me how unnatural and unimportant most things vying for our attention actually are . . . and that this insight will do me no good unless I actually change my habits.
Going Offline at the Beach
This past week, we went to the beach, which I believe is one of the best vacation destinations for families with younger children: the kids can play in the sand or the waves, while the parents relax and get a tan — or if you’re a pale-skinned cracka like me, a sunburn.
I decided to unplug from the internet . . . for the most part. Now that an internet connection can follow you wherever you go if you have a smart phone — or if you drive a recent-model car, use a new high-end appliance, or engage with any number of internet-connected things nowadays — it can be difficult to go offline completely.
I left my phone inside whenever we went out, and I tried to limit my use of it to scanning emails and text messages once in the evening, with no social media usage (aside from reading a few Substack articles via email). And with the sole exception of reading “daily intel” summaries (also by email) from Mike Shelby’s Forward Observer — which gets you up-to-speed quickly on major news stories with a practical, rather than politically partisan, analysis of events — I avoided reading or watching any “news.”
Social Media Is a Total Waste
I was quickly reminded — I would say “reminded” rather than “realized,” because Lord knows this lesson has been made abundantly clear to me many times in the past already — I was reminded that social media is a waste of time, energy, attention, etc.
By “social media,” I mean all the usual suspects: Fakebook, Twatter, YouTube, and the parallel ecosystem of un-woke, free-speech promoting alternatives on the Right, e.g., Gettr, Rumble, etc. — and nowadays “Right” seems to refer to anything more politically conservative than the gender-studies department at U.C. Berkley, so by merely taking a hands-off, nonpartisan approach to content moderation, your platform is effectively “right wing.” (Lenny Bruce and George Carlin would be shocked to find their positions on free speech are now considered “alt-Right.”)
Social media platforms do have very limited usefulness. They have allowed regular people to share some of the facts that the regime-friendly mainstream media tried to bury (e.g., the actual peacefulness and diversity of the Canadian Freedom Convoy protests earlier this year), so these platforms are not entirely bad; but the ratio of good information to time-wasting shit is extremely low. For every one insightful statement someone makes on Twatter, there are a thousand people just stupidly chanting slogans and having unhinged emotional reactions like overgrown toddlers throwing tantrums.
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