Slow Your Roll, Twitter Liberals #COVID19

Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelt Garner

Trump isn’t going anywhere. His presidency isn’t over. He’s well on his way to losing the popular vote and winning the Electoral College. Or he’ll bribe Electors or dox them, or intimidate them on Twitter. He’s going to dump Pence and name Don Jr. his VP. Or Steve King.

He’s just not going anywhere. Ever. Period.

Or, put another way, things would have to get so bad for Trump to finally have any form of political accountability that it would be a historic national tragedy of such proportions that neither side would be able to find any reason — any reason — to find any political advantage from it. For Trump’s core base of 35% of the electorate to go down in any way, we would be facing nothing short of the Apocalypse. Or it would have to feel like it.

And, really, there would have to be a very specific set of circumstances such that Tom Cotton or Kris Kobach or The Kooch or name your young fascist wannabe wouldn’t be able to somehow rise to power to do everything Trump has wanted to do but was too old, unfocused and incompetent to do. I honestly don’t even know exactly what that would look like.

In general, the current crisis is only going to accelerate and deepen our decent into dystopian authoritarianism. We may be identical to Putin’s Russia in a few months. ICE will be weaponized. Any dissent will be crushed or managed out of existence. I have no hope. It’s over. We’re in political hell.

Just trying to imagine any scenario whereby we abruptly go back to any sense of the American we had before Trump came to power is a struggle. I guess, maybe, if Trump lost his mind and started using the Presidential Alert System to shoot out dickpics to people’s cellphones on a daily basis, then maybe we might get his support down to about 30%. But his enablers have invested so much of their self-identity in MAGA that even that probably won’t phase them. MAGA is a death cult, pure and simple.

And, really, even if Trump was, say, blamed for 1 million unnecessary, preventable deaths, House Trump might get the wind knocked out of it for one election cycle. They’d come back in 2024 with Don Jr. and act as if nothing happened. Any Democratic president will be impeached the moment Republicans control the House and be hobbled politically during the second half of their four year administration.

Things would have to be a singularity of the horrific for House Trump to have any form of political accountability. It would have to be a waking nightmare. So bad that political level the entire country, both Red and Blue would feel as though they were being horrifically tortured specifically because of things we could prove House Trump did.

It would be so bad that liberals would look back and think we would have been better off if the pandemic never happened and Trump cruised into his second term. MAGA people would have to proof that they, personally, had loved ones who died directly and specifically because of Trump. But they’re a death cult, so lulz. I just don’t see a million preventable deaths being enough for them to stop worrying about the browning of America, or feminists or transgender Olympians.

And, really, they would simply gloat that they got what they wanted — a massive tax cut and young hack MAGA judges. The moment we all came to our senses after a horrific few months — if it ever came to that — they would bounce back and act like nothing happen. Or they would blame liberals, or Asians, or whomever. MAGA is all set to murder liberals in cold blood in a Little Terror if need be. They just aren’t functioning in reality anymore.

Prove me wrong.

If you think I suffer from “Trump Derangement Disorder,” you can fuck off, you shithead fucktard cocksucker. Eat shit.

‘Accountability’ #COVID19

MAGA, 2020
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelt Garner

At the heart of MAGA is the idea that because they’re skart of women with sexual agency and the browning of America, Trump — as an avatar of their misogyny and racism — can pretty much rule as a tyrant because, lulz! Now, that ideology is being put to a test with the first real crisis Trump has experience that is not a self-own.

And it could not happen at a worst time. Not only has Trump already been impeached and acquitted, but we’re not well into the 2020 presidential campaign and so all things being equal, Trump could murder me live on Sean Hannity’s show ritual sacrifice style and, well, “let the people decide.” Add to this that generally exactly what I predicted would happen, is happening, the same political dynamic associated with global climate change is happening with COVID19 only with far more dire and immediate consequences is happening, well, we got a problem.

It’s very possible that after some thrashing about for the right strategy, House Trump will find just the right mixture of hate, racism, ignorance and “owning the libs” necessary to do exactly what he was going to do anyway — lose the popular vote and when the Electoral College. By one vote, if need be. In fact, as I keep ranting, Trump is fully prepared to dox, or threaten or bribe individual electors simply to get into office so he can fight another impeachment battle.

If you work on the assumption that the Russians are going to hack directly into our election computers, anyway, then, lulz. Even if we prove this happened, by the time we get around to fixing the problem it could mid-way into his second term. He could very well name Don Jr. his veep and, then, well, House Trump will have been founded once Trump is finally convicted in the Senate in, like, August 2023. Or he could use an actual American Nazi like Rep. Steve King as his veep to make the prospect of impeaching-and-convicting as nasty as fucking possible.

Or, put it another way — there is unlikely to be any accountability for Trump turning what could have been The Little One into THE BIG ONE. MAGA is a death cult. They would rather we all die that women have the right to choose or AOC have the political power she’s potentially going to grow into.

‘The Big One’ #COVID19 #CoronaVirus

Maybe. Maybe not.
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelt Garner

I keep hearing chatter about how COVID19 isn’t “The Big One.” Well, all things being equal, it isn’t. And, yet, maybe it is. The Trump Administration is criminally mismanaging this situation to such an extent that, at least in the United States, it really might be The Big One.

Each nation has a different dynamic to it when it comes to fighting this pandemic. What is rather unsettling is we probably should have shut down all passenger flights some time ago if we were really serious about stopping COVID19 from being The Big One. In the popular imaginnation, because of things like The Stand, we assume that a lot of people would have to die for it to be The Big One.

What if it was just a lot of people got SICK. Like, a huge number. So much so that entire nations (ex: USA) became incapacitated. I think you could call THAT “The Big One.” Trump really is doing everything in his power to screw this up on a massive level. He’s doing a criminally bad job of not only mitigating this situation, but preparing the populace for the next step — triage.

There may come a point when we have to a national “family talk” about some pretty dark things. Like, what do we do when COVID19 rushes into the prison system? What do we do, if anything to save those people? What happens when the health system collapses and people with serious, non-COVID19 illnesses can’t get help? Who pays for all of this? What happens to people who are too sick not to go to work and they can’t go to work? Who feeds their children and keeps the lights on?

And that doesn’t even begin to address both The Gray Plague and the perception crisis that a lot of recorded instances of WuFlop would cause. Those two things in combination in the United States would likely be, in itself, The Big One in the American popular imagination. It would dwarf 9/11 in our culture for no other reason that if 11 million people died, many of them elderly, someone, somewhere might notice and hold Trump, at last, accountable. I DON’T WANT THIS TO HAPPEN. But if it tragically did, I’d at least like our naked emperor to be held accountable on a political level for once.

We’re just not prepared to answer those questions right now. A lot and I mean A LOT of preventable suffering is probably going to happen pretty soon. Sometime between now and The Ides of March is my guess. You can’t lulz something this serious without there being some consequences. The United States is setting itself up for an enormous — preventable — disaster on a pretty historic scale. So much so that it may be “The Big One” to Americans to an extent it is not elsewhere in the world.

Or maybe not.

Maybe Trump’s plan of messaging the base, hoping COVID19 will “burn itself out” and “magically vanish” in April as it grows warmer will work and he’ll use its return in October as an excuse to suspend the Constitution and put me in an ICE Re-Education Camp. Lulz!

‘Muh Novel’

Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelt Garner

I’m developing a novel and it’s going quite well. But there’s a problem — it’s meant to be an allegory of the Trump Era in the guise of a very snappy, accessible thriller. I’m growing a little nervous that while I will finish it, when I try to sell it, the context of the market will be profoundly different than I might ever expect.

The novel I’m developing has zero literary aspirations. It may if you realize it’s meant to be me screaming — in a very diffused manner — about how much I hate extremism, but, lulz. I just want everyone to have a good time. Ok, maybe not MAGA, they can suck it. But everyone else.

I really like this novel because of how character-driven it is. I really enjoy the characters I’ve come up with — especially the heroine. She’s a lot of fun. While she’s a bad ass who will kick your ass as need be, she’s not dark and unlikeable like Lisbeth Salander. She does have a pretty warped background like Salander, but I want you to like her. I want you to root for her.

Of course, I have to balance that will the risk of her coming off as nothing more than yet another sexxxy slutty assassin. I have to make her dark enough and complex enough that women (the audience) like her, but attractive enough that the marketplace (men) can hang their sexxy time fantasies on her in their minds. It’s a very complicated artistic balance.

I just hate the idea that I have to sacrifice my heroine’s likability or sex appeal in some ideological quest to make her a feminist icon. I mean, there IS sex-positive feminism, as Emily Ratajkowski makes clear on a daily basis. (Whoa buddy.)

All that doesn’t even begin to address the issue that because of identity politics I could do exactly what I set out to do and STILL “trigger” people because, well, lulz I’m a man and I should just fuck off. An example of this is a little Twitter tussle I got in with Crooked Media’s Erin Ryan. I will admit that I was a bit passive-aggressive about this very issue with her and she called me out on it, but I did make a pretty important point: it’s unlikely I will ever be able to placate her in my art. Not only am I not wealthy and / or talk dark and handsome, but I’m exactly the middle-aged white male member of the patriarchy she complains about all the time (albeit a very well-meaning loser version of it.)

I think I’m just going to pause here for a moment and have a pity party about how brutally real this concept is.

Ok, back to writing.

I guess the issue is — I want to placate Ms. Ryan with this novel while not being so preaching (ex: Olivia Wilde’s movie Book Smart) that center-Right men won’t be able to enjoy the novel on the face of it as a thriller. That’s my goal — to write a “woke” tenpole, if you will. But really, it wouldn’t be seen as all that woke because I’m going to rant against “woke” and “cancel” culture just as much fucking MAGA.

All I ask is a pandemic doesn’t make it impossible for me to sell this novel. Please?

Has #WuFlop Come To America? #CoronaVirus #COVID19 (UPDATED: MAY BE FAKE)

Shelton Bumgarner

Editor’s Note: While we know WuFlop is real and has happened in other nations, I’m hearing chatter that the specific instance shown below may be fake. If it is fake, I regret the error.

by Shelt Garner

I have seen footage of someone who has passed out in NYC. That’s all I know. But given one of the hallmarks of #COVID19 is “the Wuflop” it is something to think about — is the WuFlop in America?

Now, what is likely to happen is the media “gatekeepers” will simply ignore any such footage for as long as possibly — and rightly so. Social media is a safety valve for such things. But if the WuFlop REALLY IS IN THE UNITED STATES, then, well, hang on.

How, exactly, such footage would pop up on TV is anyone’s guess. It would likely have to either happen really conspicuously, or enough instances would be recorded that the pressure from social media would be so great that the gatekeepers would feel forced to show it.

But the key would be PROOF. You would have to follow up on the footage to find out why the person passed out so suddenly. While the footage I saw could be described as “fear porn” because the context is unknown, I do think it’s important for people to see it with some pretty strong caveats.

Only time will tell.

With Great Risk Comes Great Opportunity #COVID19US #CoronaVirus

Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelt Garner

We’re in a crisis. This weekend could be momentous. A process, a war, if you will against COVID19 may begin sometime in the next 48 hours. Our nations psyche will be torn open as millions grow sick and thousand die. We will enter an interregnum of the world orders.

Heroes will be made. Cowards will be shamed. All will be remembered.

And so we have to keep a calm mind. We have to realize that there will be battles won and lost. The fragile nature of human life, human existence will be shown more than once. Empire will fall. Empires will rise. A entire generation, the Millennial Generation, now know for “killing” this or that industry, may be know for saving civilization itself.

But it will take a concerted effort among individuals of all ages, genders and races to defeat this new foe that brings with it fear, hate, and death. The United States may be brought to its knees soon because of rank mismanagement on the part of the current administration. And our ruler, a would-be tyrant, may see this as an opportunity to finally strike a death blow to Columbia.

Whenever I have such doubts, however, I am reminded of my time in South Korea as an expat. One of the things I learned during my five years there, at a modern day Terminus, was great risk brings with it great opportunity as well. When an old order collapses, both the tyrant and the slave have opportunities they never had before. As such, if Trump, as I fear, comes completely bonkers and, at last, declares himself a king, I believe leaders from the common folk who will arise to defend Columbia from his threats. These “renagades of funk,” if you will, will use all their will to ensure that the covenant of Washington and Lincoln will, again, be renewed.

But such a renewal will not come easy. It will come at great cost. And just as Father Abraham lost his life at the end of his “fateful trip,” so, too, may new martyrs of liberty fly too close to the sun. But I am a man of peace. I would much rather have the power of rhetoric as my sword than any mere physical armament.

I am a man of peace. A man of ideas. And I am an American.

News Media: I Want Independent Medical Verification That Mayor Pete Buttigieg Has A ‘Cold’

Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelt Garner

Now is not the time to quibble. Pete Buttigieg allegedly has a “cold.” He may have. In fact, he probably does just have a cold. But I feel given a Corona Virus pandemic is whipping around the globe that the public has the right to independent medical verification of this.

This is not too much to ask. And, given this chart:

We may find ourselves asking this question of the old, older candidates who are now bouncing around the country as well, too. I just want verification of whatever is going on.

Mike Pence, Fall Guy #CoronaVirus #COVID19

Mike Pence Is In Control.
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelt Garner

It seems rather self-evident that Vice President Mike Pence has been set up to fail. In Trump’s deranged mind, he know’s he needs to ditch Pence to placate the MAGA base, and, as such, in the end, if the Trump Administrator bungles its response to COVID19 – which it will — he can lay all the blame on Pence. That is, when Trump’s blaming liberals and or the Deep State.

Given that there apparently is already evidence of communal transmission in the United States — and we’re effectively not testing for COVID19’s spread — that the only way we’ll know what’s going on is when a lot, and I mean A LOT, of people get sick all at once all over the United States. For a few days, it may get kind of scary.

And the person who will suffer the political blame won’t be Trump, but Pence. And so President Crazypants can simply drop Pence from the ticket and cruise into a second term of bigotry, tyranny and hate. And if you think that’s my “Trump Derangement Disorder” coming out — fuck you, you piece of shit. How simply pointing out that Trump is a hate-filled ignorant tyrant is any type of “disorder” leaves me at a loss. When you think my rage against a tyrant is nothing more than an over-reaction to a policy disagreement, then, well, whoa buddy.

Anyway, it definitely seems as though we’re going to know soon enough one way or another. My gut tells me that COVID19 is spreading like wildfire in the United States and it’s going to get really bad, really soon. The whole thing may be seen as rather dramatic in hindsight. Or not. Maybe I’m overacting without even realizing it. Maybe that’s my own form of confirmation bias.

I do wish that the Trump Administration had the best interests of the nation, not the stock market, at heart. But Trump has plutocrats to placate if he’s going to win re-election and, as such, fuck you America.

The ‘Bustle’ Syndrome: The Agony & The Ecstasy Of Being A Male Author Struggling To Write Complex Female Characters

Thinking of you Ms. Ryan.
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelt Garner

As you may know, “Bustle” is a Website for women that has a male publisher. In the identity politics era we live in, this has lead to more than a few raised eyebrows. I thought of this after I got into something of a brief rhetorical tussle with Crooked Media star Erin Ryan on Twitter about my person attempt to give her, as a woman reader, complex female characters. She essentially say, “I don’t like your attitude.” But the issue I was trying to convey — it’s unlikely she would even, really, give me a chance if I did develop the type of female characters she demands still stands. I’m a man — a member of the patriarchy — and as such either she wouldn’t read my novel or I would have to work extra hard to prove to her I really was meeting her extremely high demands. I refuse to come to her as a supplicant in search of validation. Either she takes me for who I am as an artist, or doesn’t.

It became clear that her followers were going to rain scorn down on me for not being a sycophant, so I muted the conversation and decided to use the brief encounter as motivation to buckle down on my goal: prove that a man who fits the heteronormative spectrum can, in fact, write women characters for women as part of a tenpole piece of pop art. The issue is, I refuse to be a “soy boy” who fits the feminist narrative. I’m going to be myself –smelly boy attributes and all — and let the chips fall where they may. I really like Ms. Ryan and she’s really is the exact type of person I want to serve with the novel I’m writing. It would be quite an honor if I could do what appears to be the impossible — be both a man and someone who manages to provide a novel with universal truth that she would enjoy the hard work of.

Yass, Queen.

Or, put another way, I want what every artist — male or female — wants: to be accepted for who I am on my own terms because of my art. It’s extremely rare for that to happen. Phoebe Waller-Bridge is a recent example of that happening. She has both artistic AND commercial success. In a sense, she’s one of my artistic inspirations since Woody Allen has personal baggage I don’t wish to contemplate. (Wink.)

Anyway, all of this plays into my personal anger about how identity politics makes it more and more difficult to provide an audience universal truth in storytelling. The American Dirt controversy is a prime example of this — apparently only each individual little subgroup has the right to tell their story. Of course, at the same time, when someone like Stephen King is openly dubious of the need to tell non-white male stories, there’s outrage as well. So, damned if you do, damned if you don’t. And there’s an ADDITIONAL outrage if you point out the Catch 22. So, in other words, you pick your poison and expect the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune. I want to write a modern tentpole and, as such, I want to give the female audience what they seem to be demanding — honest portrayals of the female experience.

That’s what I’ve been working so hard on for about year now. Whatever the consequences of all that hard work may be, I am prepared for.

I’m Really Concerned About #Iceland Because Of #COVID19 Coming From America

Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelt Garner

The world is burning and the United States remains on Lulz mode. My concern is it won’t event be America that first has an existential crisis from COVID19 in the near term — it’ll be somewhere like Iceland. It could be any number of places connected to American culture because of tourism, but Iceland seems like the sweetspot for a major outbreak for a number of reasons.

Let me note at this point, that I’m nothing more than Brian Fellows when it comes to all of this and you’re free — in fact encouraged — to ignore anything I have to say with extreme prejudice. But the point is: if Iceland (or somewhere similar to it in, say, the Caribbean like Puerto Rico ) is in the crosshairs of a potential significant outbreak of COVID19 for no other reason than many, many people from mainland USA come through it on a daily basis. It seems like Iceland would be in the crosshairs because of all the oblivious — and infected — Americans that would stay there fora few days then leave. The natives who work in the hotel and restaurant industry would be repeatedly infected and when they all collectively got sick from this exposure, it’s likely to be rather dramatic.

And, yet, maybe I’m reading too much into things. Maybe this is all going to fizzle out and I can go back to working on my novel. That’s what I hope will happened. I really don’t want to have to fight for survival instead of developing a novel. The entire global order is on the cusp of collapsing and that would suck. It would not fun. It would not be exciting. It would suck.

There’s way too much fear porn on Twitter right now. But one thing that isI do know — all the data points are pointing towards a major outbreak in a place very connected to the United States. I think there’s a good chance a shadow pandemic is happening in the States and it would be somewhere like Iceland that felt the brunt of that shadow pandemic if I’m right.

But we’ll see. Keep the faith.