And that is precisely why I read you, Tom Gregg.

Having a conversation isn't contingent on everyone agreeing with you, quite the opposite. But the current climate of contempt and ridicule surrounding civic discourse and intellectual debate is baffling: Wasn’t the internet supposed to help us connect, exchange, and incubate a more civically-engaged society?

Without conversation, there's no moving forward, be it socially or politically.

Meanwhile, democracy is ailing but at least Trump’s entertainment value shows no sign of abating and predatory capitalism continues apace. Profiteering is making the most of ambient desperation as hopefuls flock to the internet for some extra money to tide them over or a replacement income for the job they lost. Sound thinking but there’s also no shortage of enterprising marketers waiting to cash in on urgency, peddling all kinds of digital offerings promising near instant return on investment.

Ethics? Morality? Honesty? Who cares as long as one makes bank.

Critical thinking has become an afterthought: We like our internet to tell us what we want to hear, apparently. It makes for stultifying reading…

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