“It’s Time To Reflect” made short enough for children

photo by Mari Kanizaki, via Pixabay

It has come to my attention that some people found It’s Time To Reflect to be too long, to contain too many references and too much self-reference, and to have taken too many tangents for the apparent sake of interesting links. Given that my absolute priority in writing (and tweeting (and thinking (and living)))))) is to stockpile fans and gain #clout, I thought I should make a version for those who are too GOD-DAMNED IMPORTANT AND BUSY to read beyond a tweet.

Also, buy my book.


(Please tweet them. PLEASE!)

  • Read Software Is Eating The World. It might be related to Andreessen’s essay, I dunno.
  • I went to boarding school or Oxford or Cambridge or Sandhurst or somewhere like that and can’t help but amuse my chums by referencing myself. I’m British. Or am I American? Or am I Scottish? Or am I Bulgarian? I forget … Pick whichever you already hate and build around that stereotype here.
  • Read Soviet dissident literature. It might be related to Andreessen’s essay, I dunno.
  • My Grandpa was incredibly handsome. Also something that may be related to Andreessen’s essay, I dunno.
  • I write for Quillette. #sorrynotsorry. Also something that may be related to Andreessen’s essay, I dunno.
  • This is a blog for me and my friends, but sure, review it for me like it’s an editorial in the New York Times.
  • a link.
  • The dominant ethos in Silicon Valley has stealthily pushed a cultural paradigm on most of the Western world that is at odds with the foundation of our civilisation. It has been able to do this because technology has developed to a precise point where its favoured business model is abnormally profitable and can be sustainably internally financed and used to attract the best and brightest into its orbit while still too young and naïve to know any better. The output of this model has supplanted most of the popular media apparatus and powerfully influenced the creation of culture itself, such that we are more than ever before expecting of and attuned to such things as — oh, I dunno — reference, self-reference, and tangents for the sake of interesting links at the expense of genuine originality and aspirations to art. Understanding the precise state of the technology involved is key to analyzing this properly. Andreessen proposes no such understanding. I do. That’s why I am confident technology will move past this point in the near future, and hence our culture is about to dramatically change in ways that cannot be gleaned from Andreessen’s essay, but can from mine, and can from Peter Thiel. While certainly not a flaw in Andreessen himself, the vast majority of the denizens of the Valley are blissfully unaware of either the truth or origin of their current circumstances or of the coming changes because the only culture they have ever known has rewarded raw power and irony both financially and socially. Irony is a form of intellectual power. It does not BUILD but rather taunts those who build, and discourages building, while encouraging cliquish agglomerations of the talentless and scared. The media model championed by the Valley that has devoured almost every existing institution in its domain that has this form of intellectual power, and its associated encouragements and discouragements, encoded in its very fabric. And so to hear Andreessen cheerlead his bubble to BUILD when the bubble itself is fabulously wealthy on the back of pushing raw power on absolutely everybody — completely contrary to our civilisation’s cultural heritage, I might add — is rather amusing. This cultural bubble protects itself against genuine introspection by encouraging a pathological disinclination towards the acquisition of cultural (as opposed to scientific) knowledge: they don’t read. Most tragically of all, very few of these people realize that this attitude to life and to knowledge is severely debilitating for the effective practice of science, which they claim to be their North Star and their claim to Übermensch status. Sooner or later, this entire racket is going to start to wind down. I suspect the end is already beginning. Unfortunately, to appreciate all or any of this, you have to slow down, get off Twitter, read a book or ten, and think for a minute without letting any stupid, snarky, clout-signalling bullshit flow through your keyboard.
  • lolz, baby TikTok.
  • no, you’re right, we are definitely gonna go past 13. that header was FAKE NEWS!
  • you know, if you 80/20 recursively you eventually end up with one word. here, that word would be: “read”.
  • TikTok is culturally interesting.
  • China is culturally interesting.
  • Bitcoin is culturally interesting.
  • a gif:
  • “Why aspire to art when you can remix those who try and fail? Why do anything that takes any commitment of time or effort if others will immediately be on your ass for it?” — that was in the essay. crazy, huh?
  • Reading should make you think, not tell you what to think.
  • Read The End Of The Future, The Founders Fund Manifesto, This Is Not Capitalism, Progress, Postmodernism, and the Tech Backlash, Marshall MacLuhan, Albert Hirschman, George Gilder, The Federalist Papers, Plato, and Tom Wolfe. They might be related to Andreessen’s essay, I dunno.
  • Our forefathers and foremothers did not set out to build. They set out to lead good and responsible lives. They read Homer, The Bible, and Shakespeare, and they took them seriously but not literally. They felt a duty to their families, their communities, and their country. They worked hard and saved. They stocked capital: financial, material, and social. Then they built.” — that was in the essay too. shit me, that was a good essay. I truly am the greatest living writer …

There is plenty of time to bitch and moan on social media tomorrow, and every day after.

Today, reflect.

don’t follow me on Twitter, please. don’t DM me, and stop coming to my house.

maybe a squirrel. maybe not. views my own, not my employer’s.