Sunday, November 6, 2016

Meme Magic is Real: Why Podesta's Taste In Art Matters

Incredibly, this is not a photoshop.
This weekend the waters of political discussion have been roiled by charges that John Podesta engages in activities that look a lot like ceremonies by which he shows his devotion to demonic powers.  His defenders, and they are legion excuse his behavior as a perfectly innocuous  taste performance art.  Which narrative is the true story of what lurks in John Podesta's heart is as unknowable as it is irrelevant.  Either one should damn him and his entire circle of friends in the court of public opinion.

To understand why Podesta's taste in art carries such weight, we need to understand who he is and what his behavior tells us about the man, his friends, and his aims for America.

John Podesta is not a bit player in the great game played in Rome on the Potomac.  As a key member of the Clinton inner circle he served as Bill Clinton's Chief of Staff and is currently serving as Hillary Clinton's campaign manager.  Despite being a prominent member of Team Clinton, and despite the public face of conflict between that camp and Team Obama, he managed to secure a position as a counselor to Obama and even co-chaired the Obama-Biden Transition Team.  Clearly this is a man with clout in the hallowed halls of Washington.  As such, it's important that we understand why the bizarre tastes of this powerful man bode poorly for America and her people.

The dank corners of the internet have embraced Zig Zigler's concept that, "Repetition is the mother of learning."  Of course, as the modern, irreverent that they are, they re-phrase it, "Meme magic is real."  They understand the suggestive power of persistent and consistent messaging.  The more you repeat a message, the more likely even those who disagree with that message will be to internalize it, and once infected by the idea they will be even more likely to implement that message.  You can see this at work in every advertisement and every club slogan and every chanting crowd.

The club slogan and chanting crowds are an interesting aspect of the power of suggestive repetition that often gets short shrift.  The constant refrain of a war cry or tenet of belief also serves as a signal to the rest of your community that you belong.  They are a way to separate those who believe from the unbelievers.  You wouldn't expect Trump supporters to feel comfortable in a crowd chanting, "Black Lives Matter," any more than you would expect Hillary supporters to be comfortable in a crowd chanting, "Build That Wall!"  When used in this manner, memes can be as much a badge of membership as a means of persuasion. 

This obscure joke is a photoshop done
for illustrative purposes.
When you combine those two factors, memes as persuasion and as identifiers, you begin to understand how alien John Podesta really is - and by extension how alien the rest of his inner circle are.  Of course, this isn't to say that they are from Rigel 4 or that they believe Mars needs women, just that their way of viewing the world is utterly alien to that of the rest of the nation.

Consider the man's fascination with the consumption of human flesh (and by extension that of his entire circle, which it's worth remembering includes Obama and Clinton.)  Contrast that with most the revulsion most Americans experience when exposed to the very notion of cannibalism.  This is both a reminder for Podesta that people are fit for consumption and a signal to his circle that they are members of a select group.  Podesta's defenders reinforce that very notion when they point out that anyone who feels the natural disgust as the practice of cannibalism is just different.

Well, yes.  They are different.  Very different.  They aren't like Americans.  As such, they have no business claiming to speak for Americans, let alone claiming authority to lead the government of the people, by the people, and for the people.

These people are bizzare.  They are alien.  And they need to take their culture back into the shadows where they are most comfortable.

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