Off Leash 2.5

Media roundup: how capitalism alienates us, etc.

Monday morning saw me getting misty-eyed in my cubicle over Rachel Vorona Cote’s review of Briallen Hopper’s Hard To Love for The New Republic. As someone who has battled loneliness and depression and social anxiety for the majority of my adolescence and young adulthood, it’s extremely validating to hear that there’s finally a book out about how society tends to devalue friendships in favor of sexual relationships or “romance.” I’m 24 but I’ve “only” had three relationships that I seriously give any credence to, and I’ve never felt I could 100% rely on any of them like I could my friends, as lovely as they were.

And now for something, completely different:

I’ve always admired Jane Mayer for being absolutely fearless and taking on huge targets while somehow never taking herself too seriously despite being a widely respected investigative reporter for one of the most prestigious outlets in the world. Without getting too #girlboss about it, I really liked this profile of her in Elle, which revealed that she once broke into her ex-boyfriend’s house through the dog door when he dumped her for Laura Ingraham(???) and stole her dog, which is something I’d totally do. She also flooded their house. I’m slightly put out that she’s friends with such a condescending (and flat-out BAD) journalist like J*ll Ab**mson, though.

None of my significant others would’ve broken into a house with me to get back what was rightfully mine, but plenty of my friends would.

Jane Mayer also wrote about how Fox News operates as Tr*mp’s mouthpiece, but you already knew that. Read it for the confirmation bias anyway.


New York Magazine published the most patronizing profile they could muster on the “state” of socialism, the D.S.A., and how it’s somehow cool now to be anywhere left of the Democratic Party. I’m not linking it here and giving its author any more clicks, but you can Google and find it pretty quickly. Its general thesis is that the future of the American Left can be found in Brooklyn lofts and that it’s white, male, and young, like the hosts of Chapo Trap House. I can’t speak for anyone else but I knew I was not a Democrat when Occupy SF came and went and Establishments politics failed to actually materially address any of the issues my generation cares about: educational debt, the diminishing security of jobs, skyrocketing costs of living, climate change, etc. Chapo and Bernie Sanders came along a few years later and affirmed my thinking, but I wouldn’t give them any more credit than they deserve.

I’m also comforted by the fact that none of this shit actually matters because Twitter/the Internet is not real life and tweeting doesn’t count as organizing.

Being Extremely Online and Extremely Mad About It.

Speaking of Which…

Columbia Journalism Review’s EIC, Kyle Pope, wrote this piece on how journalists take it for granted that the general public will understand why journalism is important:

“On social media and in conversations over beers, the bunker is fortified, as journalists begin to dismiss, and tune out, people who dislike them. Then they continue on as they were, filing hot takes at a rapid pace, chasing the next scoop (always following Trump’s lead), and loudly broadcasting their stories in frantic hyperbole. More and more, everyone accepts a world that is cleft in two—us and them, facts versus fantasy, the enlightened few against an angry mob.

This can’t be good. Journalism, after all, is supposed to be about the airing of ideas, about empathy, about listening to what other people think, even, and especially, if they’re not like you. That’s where the best stories live. But because of our natural instinct to huddle together and protect our pack, we fail to do what we desperately must: step away and start reporting on people in realms outside our own. What’s essential to storytelling isn’t any of us in the press—it almost never is—it’s the subjects. In better understanding who they are (they happen to be our readers), we can, perhaps, begin the necessary process of rebuilding journalism.”

This just goes to show how Twitter is bad for all of us! Get off the Internet and talk to people!