Decade in review: 00’s

Allow me, a roaring tiger of this generation, to comment on several matters, taking the long view:

– Politics: In Sept 2000, everyone thought Governor Bush seemed stupid. Turned out everyone was right. In fact it was worse: President Bush was foolish, intellectually discurious, simple-minded, and inarticulate. But hell if he probably isn’t great to have a drink or a smoke with.

– Politics2: the Republican Party descended into obsolescence. The party now apparently considers its base a frothing mix of xenophobes, homophobes, and fiercely ignorant people. This became the party that seems to hates science and knowledge. One third of the Republican presidential nominees raised their hand when asked whether they did not believe in evolution. EVOLUTION.

– 9/11 was a very bad thing caused by very bad people which gave supposedly good people a license to do many many other bad things.

– Internet: everyone is hot in the pants for “blogging” and “Twitter”, treating them as new media animals, but these are really just new formats of the old world wide web. Consider their touted benefits: very low barrier to wide audiences, democratization of opinion; isn’t that the web?

– Internet 2: Facebook is my generation’s gift to everyone else. Everyone else, also, is using it incorrectly. Who the fuck becomes facebook friends with Doritos and Miley Cyrus? No one.

– Television: make no mistake, this was the golden age of television. The writing was ambitious, the production value soared. The Sopranos, The Wire, Arrested Development, Lost, Mad Men, battlestar gallactica, The Office (UK), even the perennial Simpsons. Consider how many movie actors now feature in shows. (Contrast that with George Clooney’s flight from “ER” in the 90s.). Thankfully PVRs were also invented.

Television2: Critics may call out some of trashy shows, deriding the rise of so-called “reality-shows”. Except there was never such a thing as reality show. This is a label pundits use to exaggerate a commentary on the truth-fiction dichotomy of our time (Frank Rich I am looking at you). No, we just had more game shows (Survivor, The Amazing Race, hell even, The Bachelor) and more documentaries (Real World, Wife Swap, The Deadliest Catch).

– Culture: Everything I liked that used to be an marginal subculture became very popular and very lucrative. My comic books became fodder for movies, as did my fantasy novels; my videogames were now played by obnoxious frat boys; even the word “nerd” changed from the scarlet branding of the unwanted to a playful slap of self-deprecation. All I have left are Magic cards and Settlers of Catan.

Some gratuitous superlatives:–

Company of the Decade: Google
Runner up: Apple

Winners of the decade: Afghan women
Losers: American schoolchildren

Best innovation: iTunes Store (getting people to pay for shit is HARD in the Internet age of Free. I mean, Apps store = people actually paying for software?!).

Worst innovation: Craigslist (Craig Newmark’s refusal to play fair and be a capitalist and monetize CL has gutted newspapers.)

This decade has been so eventful I honestly can’t wait to see the next one. Hopefully not as many people will die due to incompetency, malice, or sheer bad luck. We can probably all give up on the jetpacks (carbon footprint, people). My own predictions are that the attitude towards privacy will continue to change, a huge cyberwar will disrupt everything, and I will probably discontinue this blog by 2016 after the birth of my second son.


One Comment

  • hag Says:

    Most memorable moment(s):…um, the First African American in White House?
    Most Overrated of the Decade: Dan Brown
    Most [accidentally influential]: Ricky Gervais
    Losers: Them bottle-service mongering, Monday night Marquee going, wall street f*ckwits.
    Musical Performers: Beyonce/JTimbs
    Most *pertinent* film of the decade: Lost in Translation

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