Note: This is a personal account of my experiences and opinions of the last few years (and perhaps an introduction of sorts). As such, general statements will refer to my perspective and no inference is intended as to the opinions, experiences, or facts of others.
At the start of 2016, life was simpler than today. ‘Simpler’ is something of a misnomer though. I was (and still am) an office based technical designer, perhaps not entirely happy with the path my career had taken but certainly content. Middle aged, fighting to stay on the right side of the inevitable spread that comes with age balanced against living the lifestyle I preferred. Much preferring solitude to being surrounded by acquaintances, various hobbies and loves (nothing passionately so though) to keep my mind and body occupied. In all the above-mentioned respects, my life is no different today than it was then.
At that time, I had very little interest in current events or politics beyond the extent to which they encroached onto my life. Of course, it was impossible to be totally ignorant of the ‘news’ but it was pretty much water off a duck’s back. Probably a year or so earlier while doing a search online, I came across a website in the results. I won’t mention the name of the site, suffice to say it was like a watered-down version of Going Postal and upon reading it I found it both amusing and informative and begun to read it regularly. While lurking and reading the articles and comments on there, someone linked to Going Postal (lovingly referred to as ‘GP’ henceforth) and out of curiosity I had a look. Quite a revelation. It was amusing, grouchy, esoteric at times, beautiful at times and above all, exceptionally informative. And encompassing all of that there seemed to be an actual sense of community. As previously stated, I’m not an exceptionally social person and so I began to visit as often as I could, lurking and reading.
That brings me back to 2016. The major talking points (that I was aware of) at the time were of course the referendum to leave the E.U. (I always hated the term ‘Brexit’ for trivialising such a momentous decision) and the US Presidential election. With regards to the referendum, I was already decided to vote leave on an instinctive level. The US election? No opinion at all, it didn’t concern me as far as I was aware. It was a popularity contest between a narcissistic clown and a corrupt former First Lady as far as I was concerned. Let me point out at this juncture that at the time I already had a healthy loathing for politicians and our system of governance that rewarded failure and corruption, the deification of public institutions and the direction in which the country was being led by sponsored activists of one type or another. Also, the MSM were just news pedallers, they weren’t always completely honest, but they were in the business of making money, it was expected.
Up to this point I had taken passing interest in both above-mentioned subjects, just enough to be bored by them. They were just buzzing noise in the background, like the pump on a fish tank or air conditioning, something to be put up with. Something was about to change that though. Spending more and more time on GP was beginning to actually inform me of what was happening beyond my sheltered window into the world. Of course, reading posts and comments from individuals with a similar viewpoint about the E.U. and the referendum drew me in more than an opposing view would. The main thing I noticed though was that, while we had the same opinion, mine was based on a feeling, a good amount of the people posting were providing hard facts to back up those feelings. As I read more and more, I just wanted to know more and more.
GP didn’t disappoint. While it provided an abundance of information, the associated comments were just as informative, be it additional facts, the poster’s opinion or even a humorous retort. Walls of facts can be quite imposing at times and the responses worked very well to break that up and make it an even more pleasurable experience. While my primary focus on the site were the E.U. centred posts, it was almost impossible to ignore the ever-increasing posts about the U.S. election. These differed somewhat in tone (to my eyes at least) in that, while both subjects were about undermining an upcoming decision by the people, the U.S. posts were actually informing a new opinion rather than reinforcing an existing one. Now, at this time, I was aware of the echo-chamber effect and the fact that when people of a similar mindset get together there is a tendency for them to only mention things that support their point of view and ignore everything else.
Again, GP didn’t disappoint. Though the majority agreed with each other, there were also plenty who provided alternative facts to dispute aspects of the overall consensus. This especially interested me as, on most sites I’d ever visited, the ‘heretics’ would be shouted down. Now, I won’t say this didn’t happen at all, rose-tinted glasses don’t suit me, but in the main such discussions were handled with either a cogent argument or acceptance of someone else’s right to have their own viewpoint. This also made me realise that in such circumstances, mostly differences are diffused with humour. Gentle ribbing is almost a trademark of the site.
Given the amount of information I was now ingesting (and the nature of the information), I began to take more of an interest in the wider world and what was happening. Not to any great extent, I must admit, but certainly more than I had previously. Of course, half-way through the year the E.U. referendum was dominating the site and upon the announcement of the result, both the delight and the schadenfreude was epic. As for many people though, this was the beginning of quite an eye-opening time. The simple refusal to accept the result by both the public and public servants was reprehensible at best, treasonous at worst. Up to this point I had always assumed that while public servants were always looking to feather their nests, they would still work in the best interests of the country and abide by the decision. Terribly naïve of me, I know, but at that time I had very little interest in politics. I was soon shown the error of my belief.
At this point I should say that the one and only ‘social media’ of any kind that I am a member of is GP. As such I didn’t trawl Twitter etc. reading comments. Any information from such platforms was what I saw on GP. And quite informative they were too. Even more than the posts supporting a certain viewpoint or providing information about nefarious activities or corruption, after the referendum the posts showing the bloody-mindedness and aggression of those who voted to stay in the E.U. were a revelation for me. The ones by the general public were somewhat understandable, a certain percentage just simply didn’t like to lose, they had no skin in the game (other than POSSIBLY having a little extra work to do to go on holiday). The pure venom from our elected representatives though was a sight to behold. This, more than anything, encouraged me to pay more attention to politics and politicians specifically.
Towards the end of the year was the U.S. election. This soon became the main focus, drowning out the referendum (though the whining by the usual suspects on social media didn’t abate). This was quite interesting for me now as I was still on the fence (assuming it was of no import to my life). I’d read up on both candidates to a certain extent and found Hillary actively distasteful, but I suppose I still let the MSM colour my views about President Trump. In the run-up though my perceptions were altered somewhat both by information about the candidates and to a greater extent by the Twitter account of the soon-to-be President. On it he seemed less like a traditional politician and more like someone who cared about the country rather than the office. (I’ll leave you to your own opinions as to his real intentions, mine are still somewhat unclarified).
Once the result of the election was announced I was pleased. Not to any great degree but happy. What followed that though made the reaction to the referendum result look like a child stamping its foot. The vehemence and bile of the reaction to his success was staggering. Over the next 4 years he was subjected to a campaign of belittlement, legal proceedings, impeachment and backbiting by the Democrats, RINOs and the MSM. And not just in his own country. The MSM over here was just as adamant that he was a madman, not fit for the office and should be removed as quickly as possible. I found this quite curious. Why would our news outlets show such disdain for a legally elected official, especially of the country with which we had such a ‘special relationship’?
The answer of course was fairly obvious if you’d been paying attention. There were only a couple of reasons such ‘trusted’ sources would be so blatantly dismissive and partisan. Either they weren’t, as they claim, impartial or there was some sort of inducement for them to take this stance (or both). Regardless of the reason, it was their reaction that made me pay more attention to the narratives they were promoting. Again, GP was a mine of information in providing alternate news sources and highlighting the hypocrisy of the major news outlets. While it was welcomed, it was quite a bitter pill to swallow, realising that for a good proportion of your life you’ve automatically believed what you’ve been told (to a certain extent) only to find out you’ve only been told what they want you to know. It wasn’t instantaneous by any means, but it was a beginning of a shift of my perspective of the world in general and the veracity of the information provided by ‘officials’ and ‘official sources.’
Over the next 4 years it was pretty much more of the same from the U.S. That tended to blanket out most other subjects on GP but there was also a multitude of information on subjects closer to home. I won’t belabour the point, suffice to say all this did was solidify and expand my growing cynicism of all things ‘official.’ All leading to the last U.S. election. Again, the details you already know, but this really was the final straw for me (or so I thought at the time). Regardless of what you think of President Trump, the treatment he received and the manner in which he lost was beyond the pale. To say it annoyed me was an understatement. And the sanctimonious cheering of his opposition was just salt in the wound. Most interesting to me at the time though was the selection of the candidate selected to run against him. He never seemed ‘the full shilling’ at the best of times and the stench of corruption was all over him. And most telling was the cheerleading of the MSM and the willingness to suppress any and all evidence that implicated him or his family in, at best, questionable practices. The complicity of the alphabet agencies thrown in was also a huge red flag. Now I suppose after reading (and more importantly, finally understanding) the information out there over the past few years, I’d started to believe the so-called ‘conspiracy theories’ regarding there being a bigger game at play. This pretty much confirmed it for me, and it was quite a revelation. More things started to fall into place and make sense. During that period of course, there was an overlap with our current crisis du jour. The ‘pandemic’
To say it didn’t smell right from the very beginning was an understatement. The method it was introduced was childishly executed. The over-the-top reaction to something that was barely existent at the time in the country. The hurriedly assembled new legislation waved through Parliament. It all seemed too well planned (though the actual plan for a mass viral infection was abandoned for some reason) for it to be spontaneous. During the first 6 months or so there obviously wasn’t a mass of information available regarding the virus other than that provided via ‘official’ channels. Given the newly acquired distrust of such information though it was taken with a pinch of salt. Then via various sources more was learned and disseminated about the virus itself. What was true was questionable but at least questions were being asked. Not that this altered the ‘official’ narrative or plan. MSM wouldn’t touch anything that contradicted the government (and were specifically forbidden by OFCOM to do so). This again was very telling.
Then came the delight that is the ‘vaccine.’ I’ll refrain from theories about the purpose of it but there is more than enough evidence available for serious questions to be asked. While I already had a very healthy scepticism of anything to do with the virus, the reactions of government, public bodies and the general public were disappointing to say the least. The fact that the government, in tandem with the MSM, were actively deceiving the very people they were elected to represent, and it was happening all over the world in lockstep crystallised my ever-growing hatred for ‘authority.’ Quite the most disappointing aspect though was the general public. I’d like to be kind and assume that they just want to do what they feel is right, and they have every right to do so, but I can’t shake the disgust I feel for the lack of any enthusiasm to find out what’s really going on. Their reliance on the information they’re fed, not to mention their almost pathological need to be seen to do the ‘right thing’ enrages me.
It has of course affected personal relationships I have with people. At work there is almost total compliance with the ‘vaccines’ for a multitude of reasons. It’s their choice of course (a couple are in high-risk categories) but it still disappoints that they’ve just automatically fallen in line without any question. None are overly rabid about it, for which I’m thankful, but it’s still always there just below the surface. While it’s not apparent, it does add a little strain to interactions. Maybe that’s just on my part though. The fact that I do feel that way is annoying though and just enhances my loathing for those responsible for the situation. While none of us have taken exactly the same route, I’m sure most are of a similar mind about current events and have comparable opinions and feelings.
As I said at the beginning, 2016 was a simpler time, not because of anything physical but because then I was (mostly) unaware of most of the things I know now. Knowledge is a burden, yes, but I wouldn’t want to go back to not knowing even if was an option. And for that I would like to thank Bob for providing a welcoming, entertaining and informative cauldron in which all the authors/commenters on GP can stew. The mix of stunning articles written by talented authors and the comments from intelligent, entertaining, sometimes downright rude members is quite special. I decided to come out of hiding earlier in the year and finally start posting. It’s been interesting, educational and amusing interacting with the people I’ve been reading for the past few years. Thank you all.
So, why is this titled as it is? It’s the title (shameless plagiarism) of the song that inspired me to write the article. Specifically, the full title line. It pretty much summed up my emotional and intellectual journey over the past few years:
Death of the fool. Birth of the cruel
© text & image Standard Issue Male 2022