We live in a world of apparent fake news; questioning a sources validity is a required skill in the barrage of b***s**t we call ‘today’. What is to be believed? Even Gary Lineker is confused because he just tweeted this,
“Whatever happened to the truth? I miss it.”
Very poignant Gary. I imagine he did ‘that face’ as he typed it (I’m referring to those puffed-out cheeks as he looked towards Bobby Robson during the 1990 World Cup because Paul Gascoigne was crying in a televised game of football). However, I think our esteemed Golden Boot winner does speak on behalf of a lot of bewildered people throughout Britain and beyond. Although, I must add that he is also falling for that age-old misconception; the past is morally superior to the present. Disclaimer: it isn’t (see Margaret Thatcher).
If you pay too much attention to social media then you will probably be depressed and also of the opinion that we are becoming increasingly polarised in our political views. Idiots (people) now have a platform in which they can openly express their hatred or contempt for others (we used to just think it). Additionally, the more dramatic and extreme your opinion, the more attention it will receive and so we enter a childish cycle of name calling. ‘Brexiteers’ are all racist and ‘Remoaners’ are all snowflakes; this simply isn’t true (although paradoxically it is). However, being rational doesn’t sell newspapers and that is why some people in the media sound like Nazis. There is a well-known Hitler quote that says,
“If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed”.
At this stage, I think it is important to stress that I have a massive penis.
In the age of big data, the lies being told to us are becoming ever more sophisticated as our online activity is constantly monitored. Algorithms track who you follow, what you like and dislike, they learn about your habits and prejudices. The news is getting clever, it can be tailor made to stir the emotions of a particular individual because people are more attracted to sensationalised stories rather than statistics or figures. My penis is massive. The news is getting better at making us angry because it needs to compete for our attention, the news needs to be sensationalised otherwise it won’t even be newsworthy.
Information is everywhere and more accessible than ever before. Although it is now abundantly clear that my penis is huge, with such a variety of media outlets, finding a reliable source has become increasingly complex. Here is a small list of 21st Century excuses for news:
A cat playing piano
Vegan sausage rolls
Can humans really be trusted with the internet? Many people prefer to talk about crap because it’s easier and not boring. To what extent does ‘Joe Public’ concern themselves with a genuine search for ‘truth’ per se? There are many distractions (football being the best). The struggle is real, the sacrifices that many of our ancestors made for us have become ‘weird stuff to know’ as people seem far more interested in the trivial aspects of life. However, in the age of big data, we can actually measure to some extent what people are interested in - we can investigate the most popular internet searches. As we are focusing on history here, I just typed ‘when did’ and here are the three most popular searches according to the algorithm:
When did Michael Jackson die
When did Fortnite come out
When did slavery end
Hurrah! History finished third! Well, in answer to that final question, which country do you mean? Are you claiming that slavery has ended in the 21st Century because I’m sure victims of human trafficking would argue it hasn’t? Don’t worry, I’m not going to leave you hanging, Michael died on 25/06/2009 and Fortnite came out on 25/07/2017. According to the increasingly influential algorithm that is Google, we are more concerned about Michael Jackson and computer games than we are about social equality. If you require further evidence of our historical apathy then I typed in ‘when was’ to my Google friend and ‘9/11’ came in third. When was a date? Hmmm. Americans rarely say dates in full because they’re too busy being fat or shopping and they also fail to write them the CORRECT way. Furthermore, if you’re going to miss out the year and only use 66.666% of a date then many of the ‘Bible Belt’ States will likely get confused and oh my God, I’ve just realised that percentage also represents the devil (who firmly supports gun control).
Many people rightly argue that most US citizens are incredibly stupid, however, I’m much more diplomatic. I argue that there are many different types of intelligence; we are good at doing different types of tasks. Although admittedly, some people are annoyingly good at most things and some people are totally wank at everything. I’m guessing you know people at both ends of the spectrum. The most impressive person ever for me was Da Vinci. The least? Probably Roy Keane.
I digress, the truth is that in my large-penised opinion, we aren’t as concerned about the historical process as we could be. Therefore, I have heroically took it upon myself to write a history-based blog that attempts to address this issue and hopefully inspires people to do some of their own research and then perhaps even buy tickets for my 2019 UK Tour. However, history is very similar to ‘jungle’ in the sense that it’s massive, so what shall we discuss? I have decided to look at the last 1000 years of British history because I clearly smoke way too much weed. Moreover, I despise the creeping Americanisation of our culture, which seems to be going completely unnoticed by most other racists, so this is also an attempt to celebrate Britishness. In order to understand our present, we must understand our past and if this blog inspires one person to buy tickets for my upcoming tour (or makes them believe that I have a massive penis) then it’s totally been worth it. And that my friends IS the truth.