May 19 2020: The New Normal is a Remix

May 19 2020: For various and sundry reasons I have been researching and writing about remix culture over on the business site. One of the things I watched was a documentary called RiP!: A Remix Manifesto. I didn’t find it particularly great, but the manifesto itself is compelling. Most sources credit it to the director, Brett Gaylor, but within the film Gaylor seems to attribute it to Lawrence Lessig. In either case, it goes like this:

  1. Culture always builds on the past.
  2. The past always tries to control the future.
  3. Our future is becoming less free.
  4. To build free societies you must limit the control of the past

This immediately brought to mind the people who want to make things great again, primarily be dragging things backward to some idealize past (beautiful coal!) rather than building on it and moving forward. It also evoked images of the anti-lockdown protesters that just want everything to miraculously be the way it was before the pandemic.

The New Normal is a Remix

Whatever the future looks like, it’s not going to be the same as the past. For a start, that would mean that we as a species haven’t learned a damned thing during this pandemic. I know to some people being willfully ignorant is a feature, not a bug, but I think most of us agree that minimizing their input is probably for the best.

A lot has been written about how this pandemic has revealed a lot of flaws in government, infrastructure, and cultures as a whole. There’s been a huge reveal about what’s necessary and what isn’t, what we’re able to live without and what we can’t. The future normal has to remix the most important parts of the past, the things we’re truly suffering without, with what we’re growing aware of in the present. A new normal should be the best parts, the most desirable parts. We have an unprecedented opportunity to not let the past dominate our best possible future.

May 19 2020

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  • Today is Day 64 in isolation.¬†

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2 Replies to “May 19 2020: The New Normal is a Remix

  1. Something I had been thinking about – despite the huge coverage of the alt-right fringe in the US, if you look at the numbers – it’s very little, a fraction of of a percent. But their coverage is way out of proportion. due in no small part to the mad carrots encouragement. But to see for what it is – truly an oligarchy with the media playing along. Arguably the fringe is no larger than it has been for decades but with politicians support to unify them in those politicos own interests. Moving towards a more moderate national ideological stance will suppress them inevitably as they are no longer given attention.So if the moderate majority makes itself heard, the fringe will return to background noise. I think part of the problem is the left needs the confidence to move towards the left and not follow the hystericals to the right

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