We must escape this vortex of human psyches!
There's a wonderful moment in Neil Gaiman's Sandman story arc "The Doll's House", where  a cadre of dreaming humans all find themselves sucked into a shared dreamworld. A "vortex" has manifested in the waking world, and Morpheus the Dream King must stop it or all the humans will be driven insane. It's wonderful and dark and terrifying. And I feel like we're living in it since the US presidential election.

Part of the reason I've made the choice to publish this journal on Patreon, only to my patrons here, is as an escape from social media. Like most creators, I feel there's a need to connect to the audience for what I make. But the "opportunity cost" of social media is a high one. And since HE WHO SHALL REMAIN NAMELESS appeared in the media sphere, and now awaits his throne as President-Elect, it's become even higher.

I don't think these are the passions of an ordinary, or even extra-ordinary, political campaign. As I've written before, I think social media, and Twitter in particular, are a kind of human psychic bonding. The barriers that keep our internal and emotional lives seperate are being torn down, and we're all swirling around in a shared dream space of tweets, status updates and cute cat memes. But it's not so cute anymore. In fact, it's becoming a nightmare.

As creators, I'm starting to believe we have a duty not to further empower that nightmare. Despite trying my best I've added a few angry tweets to the hurricane of rage that's entirely consumed twitter for 2 weeks now. But there's no way to win this fight. The trolling, outrage, hatred and incipitent violence only feeds on itself, sucking everyone, liberal or conservative, into the same nightmarish vortex. And at it's centre is the fat frog face of Trump (damn, named him!), parasitically feeding off the attention.

What can we do? Well. To steal another idea from Neil Gaiman. We can make great art. We can tell the stories, play the music, craft the art that lures people out of the vortex and back into a calmer psychic space. 

PS - Ursula Le Guin's Steering The Craft is in the Black Friday sales. Thought many of you would want to add a copy to your library : http://amzn.to/2gxmIjI