All posts by correia45

Fisking the WaPo Editor Who Is Sad He Doesn’t Get To Act Like The Mafia Anymore

Sorry. My title is misleading. The mafia has more honor and dignity than the American news media.

Darn it. I have a book deadline. I should be working on that instead. Only Mike sent me this article last night telling me that it was so goofy I’d have to fisk it. And damn it, he was right. This is one of the most pretentious articles I’ve ever read. I’m actually in awe of what a piece of shit this guy is. As usual the original is in italics and my response is in bold.

It’s from here: https://archive.is/vrFAY#selection-361.0-683.204

Washington Post public editor: the powerful have realized they don’t need the Post

Correction. Nobody needs the Post.

By Hamilton Nolan

OCTOBER 20, 2020

I’m actually bummed I missed this back in October, but at the time I was too busy writing about things like Crackhead McStripperbang (aka Hunter Biden) being a complete piece of shit taking massive bribes from Communist China, because illustrious news publications like the Washington Post weren’t covering that story for baffling and inexplicable reasons.

THIS MONTH we learned that Tesla, a $400 billion public company run by one of the richest people in the world, has done away with its media relations department—effectively formalizing an informal policy of ignoring reporters.

Now marvel as this reporter provides a perfect illustration of why everyone should follow Elon Musk’s lead in ignoring reporters.

Though we should all be grateful for the chance to hear less about Tesla,

Behold his Power Snark!

 we should also recognize this for what it is: one more glaring data point showing that powerful people no longer think they need the mainstream press,

It isn’t just the rich and powerful. Everybody should ignore you lying ass bastards.

especially critical and ethical outlets like the Washington Post. 

Hahahahahhahhaahhahahahaaaa
ahaahaha aahahahhhaaa
hhahaahaaa aa
aaaaaa
snort.
Oh shit.  Wait. He’s serious?

This presents a problem.

For you.

 Because the mainstream press still needs powerful people—quite literally, in the case of the Post, as it’s owned by the world’s richest man, Jeff Bezos, who is no fonder of difficult stories about his companies than any other billionaire.

Our wannabe Bond villain boss is better than yours! (sorta like how vote by mail is great for you peasants, but not secure enough for Amazon!)

We are living through a historic, technology-fueled shift in the balance of power between the media and its subjects.

Personally, I prefer the word citizen.  

The subjects are winning.

Good. Because you guys suck at your job.  You deserve to fail.

The internet in general—and social media platforms in particular—have destroyed one of the media’s most important sources of power: being the only place that could offer access to an audience.

Insert Jeremy Clarkson “Oh no.. anyways” meme here, because this entire article is some tone-deaf reporter lamenting the fact that reporters no longer hold an absolute monopoly on information, even though it’s their own damned fault that nobody trusts them anymore.

 When Musk can say whatever he wants to 40 million Twitter followers at any time with no filter, it is little surprise that he does not feel compelled to listen to unpleasant questions from some reporter who wants to know why he busts unions and wildly accuses people of pedophilia. 

Jeff Bezos’ union busting is fine however, and the accusations of pedophilia don’t seem so wild when they keep coming true… Hmmm… How much glowing praise did the WaPo heap on the “principled conservatives” at the Lincoln Project back when they were useful for getting democrats elected? Oh wait, that was before the election. NOW they’re pedophiles!

As journalists, we all view this as a horrifying assault on the public’s right to know

-whatever we want them to

and on our own status as brave defenders of the public good.

This motherfucker is a self-licking ice cream cone.

There’s a lot of lies packed into that one line. Swap out “public good” for “DNC good”. Their defense is painfully lopsided in that it only protects the left. And the only time they’re brave is when they’re crushing the little guy. Oh look, that teenager smiled wrong. We’d better ruin his life.

And that is all true, for what it’s worth.

The words of a liar ain’t worth shit.

But this is about power.

Indeed. Except you are missing the point as to why yours is waning.

We need to take some back, lest the rich and powerful run away from one of the last forces restraining them. 

That ship done sailed. The media is only powerful as long as the public trusts them. You blew that, and you have no one to blame but yourselves. The rich and powerful on the left already get a pass from you anyway. At most you might give them some mild chiding, but then you’re back to running interference for them.

Because journalism, particularly at the highest level, is about raw power.

That’s your problem right there. It should be about telling the TRUTH. You gave up being journalists to become cheerleaders for one group of political elites. You don’t tell the truth, you spin whatever narrative the cabal of connected want you to. And as your use to the elite tapers off, they are happy for you to fade into irrelevance and obscurity. Reap your fucking whirlwind.

It is about bringing important people to heel, on behalf of the public.

Quit lying. The only “important people’ you bring to heel are the ones your masters want you to. You do nothing but make excuses for the important people on your side, no matter how egregious their sins. You are attack dogs for the left. Nothing more. Don’t try and cloak your bully bullshit in fake righteousness.

Politicians and officials and business leaders don’t want to talk to the press, subjecting themselves to the possibility of being made to look bad; they do it because they have always felt they had no choice.

Because you guys don’t tell the truth. You twist reality to suit your whims.  You’re the masters of “so what you are saying is (insert complete nonsense here)” and fucking over whoever you want with near total impunity.  You’re utterly fucking useless and getting worse at an accelerating rate. Just when America thinks you can’t get any lower, you keep digging.

I do however love how you keep saying “politicians” like we’re gullible enough to think that you treat them all the same. The only democrats you bring the heat on are the ones who have strayed from the narrative and need to be punished, or the ones who have used up their usefulness who can be safely tossed under the bus. The rest of the democrats you cover for the most flagrant crimes so hard it would make Joseph Goebbels blush.

Not that the republicans don’t suck too, but we’ve all seen how you only praise them when they’re convenient to your goals, but then trash them when they’re not. Like squishy Mitt Romney is a principled statesman when he’s screwing over his fellow republicans, but he was a woman and dog hating maniac who was gonna put us all back in chains right before that. And the problem is that republicans like that are gullible enough to keep kissing your ass in the hopes that the media will say nice things about them.  

They felt that way because papers like the Post could offer the carrot of great exposure to those who needed it, but also, always, the stick of negative coverage to those who spurned it.

So the Post is basically a mafia guy standing in your business saying “it’s a real nice place you’ve got here, it’d be a real shame if something bad were to happen to it”. And then if you don’t pay your protection, they trash your place. Accurate.

There is nothing devious or ignoble about this; a powerful press, for all its flaws, is good for democracy, and tends to promote equality by holding the big shots in check.

That assumes you are doing your actual job and telling the public the truth. Instead, you do the opposite. Your propaganda isn’t helping democracy, it’s destroying it. Or as would be revealed a few months after this mealy-mouthed article was written, they were “fortifying” democracy.

The denial of “devious” is interesting, because you fucks are like the dictionary definition. You’re slanted and biased on your best day. On your worst you’re outright liars. You hammer some points while ignoring the ones that make your chosen look bad. And in an article talking about how it sucks you don’t get to bully as many people as you used to, you’ve got the fucking audacity to say that it’s not “devious”?

Anyone who has ever negotiated to land a contentious interview with a famous person knows that you only get those interviews when your subject fears what will happen if they don’t do the interview.

I can confirm this is true, and I’m only a little bit famous. When I’ve done interviews with the mainstream lefty media about a controversial subject it was only because I knew if I didn’t they’d just publish whatever bullshit they felt like. I felt like I needed to get my side out there. So then I’d do an hour-long interview so that they could still get everything ass backwards, quote one sentence from me and ten from my detractors parroting whatever the agreed upon lefty narrative was. So that was fucking useful.

Today, that fear is disappearing.

Fantastic. Only bullies want people to live in fear. You corrupt losers shouldn’t be feared, you should be mocked. Most of you are shit tier writers and your hot takes are vapid nonsense. The sooner you end up bankrupt and unemployed the sooner your rotting institutions can be replaced by actual journalists.

We all need to figure out what to do about that. 

Maybe you could try telling the truth? Maybe you could investigate and expose issues regardless of political affiliation? Maybe if you did this for a while you could earn the public’s trust, and then you would actually matter again.

Naw. That sounds like work.

Trump’s incredible accumulation of power in the face of countless well-documented scandal stories is a proof of concept that will surely be used by smarter characters in the future.

Here’s a perfect example and our intrepid reporter is too dense or dishonest to grasp. All the public hears for years is Trump, Trump, Trump, even though while he wrote this there was a scandal story involving Joe Biden accumulating piles of bribe money through his family. Places like WaPo actively squashed the story, while BigTech labeled everything about it Fake News and kicked independent journalists off the internet. A couple of months later when it could no longer sway an election it magically turned into Real News, but our remarkably incurious mainstream reporters are happy to let it languish in obscurity.  

The Washington Post and its competitors—the elite level of national news,

Lol

the places that have traditionally set the agenda—

The fact you think that’s a good thing is telling. Your job is to report. Not to “set agendas”.

are the most vulnerable to this shift.

That’s because you’re only valuable if the public trusts you. But in your obvious public fellating of the DNC you threw that away. You’re only useful to the cabal of elitists when you can produce results. As you slide into irrelevance they’ll just use Big Tech instead, and you have no one to blame but yourself.

They are the relatively small portion of the media that is able to command both access and editorial independence.

Seeing the boot licking WaPo bark about “independence” while actual independent journalists routinely get deplatformed and demonetized is amusing. You can tell what they fear by who they try to silence.  

Politicians feel that they must deal with the Post, but the Post still feels like it can say what it wants, critical or otherwise.

We all know that’s a lie. I feel like I’m getting repetitive in my Fisking here, but that’s because this article is basically the reporter whining about the same points over and over again.

That state of affairs, which has been taken for granted for decades, is evaporating. 

You saying that actually gives me a little bit of hope for America. You took it for granted. The public got wise to your scam. You coasted on the rep of your predecessors, thinking that you could milk that goodwill while you blatantly covered for your friends. Except the well is dry, asshole.

Donald Trump, unfortunately, looms large in this.

That’s because he lives rent free in your heads.

His imperviousness to the usual blows from the press was evident five years ago.

The single best thing Trump did was show half the country that the only way to deal with you dishonest twerps is to say damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead. We all know that you’re just going to lie and make shit up no matter what, so we might as well just get it over with. If nobody believes you, why should we care what you say about us?

Now, insert obligatory Orange Man Bad story here:

(One of my colleagues at Gawker got so exasperated with Ted Cruz’s accusation that the media was sitting on secret Trump scandals during the Republican primary that, in 2016, he wrote a story listing the many scandalous Trump stories we had already published—to no effect—with the headline, “Ted Cruz, Please Help Us, We Have No Idea How to Stop Donald Trump.”) It turns out that being utterly shameless and muttering the words “Fake News” nonstop, while having an entire right-wing media ecosystem amplify your message, really works. Trump himself, a pure creature of the New York tabloids, is too vain and dumb to realize that he could probably ignore the normal elite press altogether. But his incredible accumulation of power in the face of countless well-documented scandal stories in the Post and the New York Times and elsewhere—stories that would have brought down earlier presidents—is a proof of concept that will surely be used by smarter characters in the future. 

I’m pretty sure this editor stuck that utterly pointless and boring story in because they have a word count requirement of Orange Man Bad for every single thing they’ve written for the last four years. These goofy bastards still haven’t realized that Trump isn’t the disease, he was a symptom.

Our intrepid reporter also left out the part about how the media gave Trump insane amounts more coverage than the other republican candidates during the primary because they were dumb enough to think that Trump would be the easiest one for their anointed Saint Hillary (She Who Was Without Scandal) to beat. How’d that work out for you dorks?

The question for the Post is: What are you gonna do about it?

Learn to code.

When the fear that was instilled in generations of politicians by Watergate wears off,

Will you morons ever quit fapping to Watergate? That was almost 50 years ago. During the ensuing decades you’ve managed to ignore a bunch of democrat scandals that are way fucking worse, and you quisling fucksticks are still patting yourselves on the back for exposing Watergate? You say Watergate, and America says “what have you done for me lately?” The answer is NOTHING.

You are pathetic.

 and the federal government becomes ever more populated by officials who have discovered that no matter how meticulous David Fahrenthold’s reporting is, it won’t move the needle that much on entrenched public opinion?

Unfortunately for you, your credibility is ruined. Half the country knows you’re perpetually full of shit. The other half knows too, but they pretend you’re honest because they think your propaganda helps their team. The scary part is even when you occasionally tell the truth, you’ve got such a history of dishonesty that the knee jerk assumption is you’re lying about that too. This country has reached the point where all of the institutions we traditionally trust for information have turned out to be untrustworthy. That’s a recipe for disaster.  

When the full flowering of the social-media age turns even the most prestigious papers into just another mid-sized Facebook page struggling to catch up to the reach of Dan Bongino? 

It already has. You’re just too stupid to realize it.

I must admit I do not know the answer.

You do, you’re just too cowardly to admit it. That would require humility and introspection, traits which are rare among our self-proclaimed intellectual and moral superiors.

Naw. The problem can’t be you. It’s us. We “subjects” are supposed believe whatever you say, and comply with your demands out of fear of your wrathful word.

 All I know is that there is only one way the press maintains its power in society: By metaphorically putting the heads of powerful people on pikes.

Except we all know none of those heads will belong to useful democrats.

Hell, we just had a scandal far worse than Watergate and the result was one fed getting a year of probation. Where were all the heads on pikes, Mr. Big Talk?

We all know who those severed heads will belong to. It’ll be regular people who got out of line. It’ll be the regular dude who questioned a democrat politician. It’ll be the teenager who “smirked”.

You chickenshits give a pass to powerful democrats up to their eyeballs in fraud, bribes, scandals, and corruption, but you’ll fucking crush regular Americans who don’t toe your arbitrary line.

Because you’re bullies, and bullies are cowards.

If the Post and all the other respectable media outlets lose their ability to do that, powerful people will, by extension, stop caring what the well-informed segment of the public thinks.

I don’t even have a funny response to you at this point because as you have self-righteously gone on and on, I’ve become increasingly disgusted. You’re nothing but propaganda shills wearing a rotting corpse, play acting at being reporters.

Democracy dies in dumbness. 

And you’re the one who dug the grave.

The Culture War is Coming For You Whether You Like it Or Not

THE WOKE: Everyone we don’t like is a nazi. If you disagree with us about anything, you’re a nazi. That black woman? Nazi. That Jewish guy? Jewish nazi. That old guy who literally got blown up fighting nazis? Also a nazi for not agreeing with us. If you question this in any way? Nazi. And we’re going to get crazier and crazier so that we can weaponize this until we can bully everyone into compliance.
THE DEMOCRATS: Cool. We can use you useful idiots to consolidate power.
THE MEDIA: We are happy to reinforce this nonsense.
HOLLYWOOD: We can still keep raping each other though right?
THE WOKE: Sure.
THE REPUBLICANS: Duuuuuuuuuuuur…
BIG TECH: Awesome, then we’ll start installing a dystopian nightmare system that makes everyone you guys designate as undesirable subhuman filth unable to function in society.
GINA CARANO: You guys are kinda acting like nazis.
DISNEY: FIRED!

This post isn’t really about Gina Carano. Her firing is just another milestone in the culture war. I’ve been talking about this problem for about a decade now, as it’s gotten worse and worse, accelerating as big powerful lefty institutions discovered that they could harness the fire. You either toe their arbitrary line, or they try to destroy you.

And of course, regular people see this and understand it, but they keep their mouths shut because they don’t want to get cancelled themselves. Or they actively join in condemning whoever just got cancelled, in the hopes that they’ll be seen as friendly. Only that only works temporarily, because eventually the mob will turn on them too. We’ve seen that happen over and over with “allies”. You’re only an ally as long as you are useful.

When there are no Other-Than-Lefty targets, they eat each other in a cannibal feeding frenzy. I’ve documented a bunch of those here over the years. But as soon as there is an OTL target, they fixate on that. The nail that sticks up must be hammered down.

Of course the social justice mobs don’t actually give a shit about any of the stuff they claim to. They’re just in this to feel powerful. They’ll happily destroy any of the groups they’re claiming to want to help on any given day. There isn’t a lot of rhyme or reason to their bullshit. That’s because it isn’t about “the victims”. The oppressed can be swapped out as needed. They’re just a handy excuse.

Of course the DNC and their allied megacorporations don’t give a shit about any of this woke nonsense. They just use the woke as clubs against their foes. They are the epitome of Useful Idiots. They use SJWs the same way they use BLM or Antifa, or whatever disaffected organization they can get some mileage out of today, and then they ignore them when they are inconvenient.

You can go look at Gina Carano’s tweet for yourself and see how “Anti-Semitic” it is. It shows young victims of the Holocaust in a concentration camp labeled Germany 1944 next to a pic of migrant kids in cages labeled America 2020, which insensitively minimizes the magnitude of the horrors of the Holocaust.

Oh wait… Sorry. That tweet was from her costar Pedro Pascal and is in no way controversial at all. My bad.

Gina’s tweet says absolutely nothing negative about Jews at all. It is about how it was the German people (not just the German government) harming the Jews after a propaganda campaign convinced the people it was okay to, accompanied by an image of a Jewish woman being victimized.

Don’t take my word for it. Both of these are still screen capped and on the internet. (WordPress is being buggy today and not letting me post Jpegs). So alluding to the fact that some people today are acting like the actual nazis did is a super insensitive hate crime, but those same people literally labeling everyone they disagree with nazis (one of the most evil organizations in history, which logically should be destroyed) regardless of their beliefs is perfectly fine.

The narrative will be about how Carano is Anti-Semetic and the regular useful idiots will run with it. Bullshit. She’s at worse ineloquent. But that’s a lame excuse too, because I’m a really successful professional wordsmith, and these same fuckers keep trying to cancel me for all sorts of insane made up nonsense things I never wrote. It doesn’t matter how clearly or understandably you state your point, they’ll just twist it into whatever horrible thing they want it to be and run with that instead.

If I recall correctly the last time they labeled Gina Carano as Anti-Semitic it was because she put up the famous picture of the lone man in the crowd who DID NOT SALUTE and something about be that guy. Back when Americans actually learned history, we all knew this picture. And somehow the historical ignoramuses took that and ran with it to prove she was a Jew hating nazi… which is literally fucking backwards as to the point of the meme. But it doesn’t matter what you do or say. They just lie and make shit up.

And when she didn’t bend the knee, that made her target number one. People are supposed to cower before the mob and apologize and beg forgiveness. It doesn’t matter if you did anything wrong or not. That’s how it works. Celebrities, big companies, it doesn’t matter, you have to do the public show trial apology to placate them (actual behavior doesn’t matter, just the show) And if you don’t, it makes you a continual target, and they will keep coming after you, over and over, forever.

People making excuses for the cancelling are fools. They might even be well intentioned, but they are still fools. They are allowing the left to weaponize internet outrage into a tool that can be used to selectively dehumanize and remove voices that stand in the way. They tested this out on the most extreme voices, and when they got away with that without too much backlash, they keep working their way inward, labeling the next level extreme, and then the next, and the next. So on and so forth, until everyone who isn’t in lockstep compliance with the leftist orthodoxy of the day is a dangerous extremist.

And in just a few years we’ve gone from don’t let those dangerous extremists share their dangerous extreme ideas on certain internet sites, to they shouldn’t be allowed to have jobs, bank accounts, credit cards, or any ability to communicate. While the bar for “extremism” has been lowered to include basically whoever they want at any given moment.

“Hey, why is a Detroit election van dropping off dozens of big mystery boxes to the supposedly shut down vote counting center at 3:00 AM way after the deadline? There are several angles of this event on security camera videos. I don’t know. Maybe we should audit that or something?”
-Shut up, you extremist insurrectionist domestic terrorist. Now we need to remove you from society for everyone’s safety.

We’re slouching our way toward a Chinese Communist social credit system, only because it’s disorganized and coming from multiple allied angles instead of codified by a central committee, people are acting like it is fine.

The problem with what Gina Carano said isn’t that our modern left acts like nazis, it is that any historical comparison will never line up perfectly because we live in different situations/cultures. People get all fake-outraged like “how dare she compare the bullshit we are putting modern republicans through currently to the absolute horrors suffered by Jews!” except that the butt hurt people are picturing 1943 level nazi evils, when our current modern left is probably only about at a 1933 level of nazi fuckery. The Nazis didn’t suddenly appear on the scene and kill millions of people overnight. It took years of consolidating power, propaganda, and growing evil.

Today the left is still pushing and seeing what they can get away with. Both them and the nazis used statist control freak behavior designed to dehumanize and remove all opposition to their power grabs. Our modern left has not got to the cattle cars and concentration camps part… yet. This may hurt some feelings, but this comparison is far more accurate than the casual, tiresome, endless “everyone I don’t like is a nazi” line they use against all of us (regardless of our actual beliefs).

I’m not saying that Gina Carano getting fired is “tyranny”. I am however saying that her firing is yet another warning to entertainers and people in the public eye that we must always comply with the rigid groupthink narrative, or they’ll never work for the handful of megacorporations which absolutely dominate their industry ever again. Meanwhile, if you have the proper politics you can apparently be a horrible piece of shit and get a pass for years. The message is clear. Be on the winning team, or else.

The left has paid attention to the culture war for a long time, because they understand the value of entertainment products for shaping philosophy. They locked up most of publishing years ago, and writers like me who talked about it got dismissed as cranks. Then they did video games, comic books, RPGs, podcasting, Youtubing, whatever, it doesn’t matter, if it is something that they can sink their hooks into, they will, and then they’ll go about driving out everyone who doesn’t toe their line.

They did the same thing to academia. They did the same to news. So now all your entertainment, education, and information has to follow leftist orthodoxy or else, and that’s been growing and accelerating for years… and yet conservatives are continually shocked when the left sets the tone and the rules of discourse in our culture, and yet they roll over and act like all this culture war stuff is meaningless.

It isn’t. Don’t think you’re safe. It is coming for you too. Gina Carano is a wildly popular actress on the biggest show streaming. The rest of us are nobodies in comparison. So what happens when one of us says something that could be construed as bad? (and as we’ve seen, they can declare anything bad). You’re fucking toast. The message is clear, you think wrong, you’d better keep your mouth shut or we’ll ruin you.

It’s the same reason they’ve gone nuts censoring social media for the last few years. They want you to feel isolated, alone, and unable to speak (if you speak you might discover that you’re not alone). If you go someplace else to talk to people who agree with you, they crush those places. They can’t allow dissent. We all have to agree or else. They need to control the space so that they can label all dissenting views as fake news. If you go someplace that doesn’t adhere to rigid leftist orthodoxy, then you’ll get mocked as being in a “right wing echo chamber”, which is ironic considering since they control all entertainment/news/media/publishing you’d basically have to live in a cave in the forest to avoid being exposed to leftist views.

And the powerful lefty institutions fucking love this. Because this gives them a giant club to dominate American culture. (Those 1933 nazi propagandists would have loved the internet!)

People ask me what the solution is. Sorry. I don’t have a good easy answer. I’m just a pebble in the avalanche.

Read the Room, Jeep!

I watched the Super Bowl yesterday. I don’t follow pro-sports. Heck, I didn’t know who was playing until Saturday, but my son plays high school football so it was fun to watch it with him. (the boy is nearly Gronk sized) I rooted for the team with all the old dudes, and as an added bonus I found out afterwards that Brady is a Trumpkin, so him winning caused a great deal of wailing and gnashing of teeth among certain circles of super obnoxious dorks on Twitter. So double victory.

But the highlight of the whole evening for me was the commercial by Jeep. Because holy shit, there is a perfect example of an utter failure in marketing.

I can imagine how they came up with this ad campaign:

##

JEEP CORPORATE OFFICE –

The CEO of Jeep stands at the head of a conference table filled with the CorpoUniParty’s best and brightest. “Alright, our new campaign is going to be about Reuniting America, so we’re going to aim it at those horrible, knuckle dragging red state deplorables.”

“But sir, aren’t they all domestic terrorist insurrectionists who need to be driven from society because they believe in evil conspiracy theories like unfair elections?”

Everyone at the table laughed, because red staters are so stupid. Everyone knows the election was merely fortified.

“Oh no. That was so last week. They’re only garbage people who must be resisted by any means necessary when they’re in charge. Now that we’re in charge it’s time to come together and all that other bullshit. Reuinited America it is. So we need to figure out how to appeal to…” the Corporate Overlord made quote marks with his fingers. “the working man.”  

“Gross,” said one of the many Corporate Underlings.

“I know right? But we’ve maxed out our sales to butch lesbians and suburbanites who think they need four-wheel-drive because they occasionally go over speed bumps. Have any of you ever been to the country?”

The underlings share a nervous glance. Finally one of them tentatively raises a hand. “I went to Danbury Connecticut once for summer camp.”

Everyone from Manhattan knows that Danbury Connecticut is filled with scary murder rednecks like the movie Deliverance, so that would do.

“We need to appeal to the middle of America. What’s in the middle of America?”

“Corn?”

“Racists?”

The CEO thought it over. “Let’s mix it up and go with corn. What’s that corn state? You know the one that our jets fly over between LA and New York?”

“Kansas?”

“Whatever. Set it in one of those bullshit states we don’t care about. I know! We’ll even title it The Middle. What do people out there in The Middle do?”

“Their sisters!” shouted one of the MBAs. They all laughed and high fived.

“They voluntarily snow plow their liberal neighbor’s driveways… Just like ISIS.”

“All good points, but they sure do like to cling to guns and religion.”

“We can’t use guns. Guns are only okay when they’re in Hollywood action movies or being used to guard Congress. So we’ll go with the religion angle. I want to see lots and lots of crosses. Shots of crosses on the wall. Churches. Church steeples. Make the telephone poles cross shaped. Do they make cross shaped corn? And find some dilapidated church built back in the 40s, because everybody knows religious people are too stupid and poor to build anything new.”

“You know, sir, during our celebrity voice over talking about the dichotomy between the two sides of the country, to contrast the red staters playing in the dirt, we should put a bunch of big gleaming pretty glass buildings in the background, so that we can subtly remind them that we’re above them.”  

“Good call. And for the fly over people get all the cow skulls, broken wind-mills, and silos you can find. We can’t ever let them forget their place. Alright, on that voice over, what celebrity is hot right now with those racist dipshits?”

“Cardi B? She’s a Hash Tag Strong Woman.”

“No. Everyone knows Red Staters hate women. I saw it on the Hand Maid’s Tale. We need nominally male gender identifying, someone who represents those backwards inbred hicks. Can we get Bruce Springsteen?”

“But sir, isn’t he a flaming liberal from New Jersey who campaigned for Joe Biden and who routinely sneers at our target audience of uneducated rubes? Since they’re feeling mocked, disenfranchised, and thousands of them just lost their high paying energy jobs, how can we foist a coastal elitist millionaire musician on them?”

The MBAs all share a confused and worried glance about how to overcome this seemingly insurmountable issue.

“Hmm…  But what if we stick him in a cowboy hat?”

“BRILLIANT!”

##

“Hi. I’m Bruce Springsteen, millionaire musician, but today I’m driving around bumfuck nowhere in some busted ass old jeep to a melancholy soundtrack looking like an extra on Longmire so that you know I’m JUST LIKE YOU. Poor.

Look. A cross. Because Jesus or something. I don’t know. I got paid like two hundred grand for one day of work. Here’s some high-minded sounding poet laureate style voice over about how we’re all in this together that I probably recorded in the studio in my mansion.

Now I’m gonna be extra sanctimonious about how hard it is to meet in THE MIDDLE.

Red versus Blue… Sure, team blue was all #RESIST for the last four years and endless goofy investigations, but if you think security videos of 50 mystery boxes being delivered by a Detroit election van at 3:00 AM is worthy of an audit you are basically a terrorist who needs to be cancelled and driven from society.

Citizen versus Servant. Like it’s okay for riots to burn the places where citizens live and work for months on end, but if the servants are inconvenienced for a day that’s basically a coup that requires more troops than we landed on Utah Beach.

We need that connection. We need the middle. Because somebody has to pay the taxes to bail out our hedge fund buddies.

There’s a Divide. Of course that divide is your problem and totally not our fault. Look, a horse.

Our light has always found its way through the darkness. Said darkness obviously being four years of somebody we didn’t like briefly keeping us from doing every crazy ass thing we wanted to. Have some more executive orders.

But there’s hope… on the road… because we installed an old white segregationist who got millions funneled to him through his crackhead son from communist China… but if you talked about that in October you got kicked off the internet for Fake News. But now the news is real. So Hunter got a book deal from the same publishing house that cancelled a senator’s book about the dangers of Big Tech censorship.

Damn… How many crosses do you people need?

To the ReUnitied States of America. We even made the star red too because we are completely incapable of any introspection whatsoever.

Buy our shit.

Using a goofy review to give a peek behind the curtain of how collaborations work

Normally it is customary that authors never respond to their reviewers, because that is seen as uncouth. Some authors would say, barbaric, or unprofessional even. Luckily for me I’ve built my career on doing everything basically ass backwards from what publishing considers normal. (considering I actually open Tom Stranger 2 with a scene responding to all the bad reviews of Tom Stranger 1, I even make money with it!)

So far most of the reviews for my latest book have been good. However, there’s a couple that made me laugh because of how goofy and off base they are. This one in particular for the audiobook is going to peg the Brandollini meter, but it illustrates a few things about how the writing process/reviewing works, that I thought might be professionally helpful for the writers who read this blog to understand how my collaborations work.

Having never read anything else by John Brown I can’t say Gun Runner is exclusively his story, but I can say it’s definitely not Larry Correia’s style of writing. “

Ha. Bullshit. 😀

Okay, this line of attack is one that I get on pretty much every collaboration I’ve ever done, and it’s just downright wrong. I’ve seen this said about my collabs with Kupari, Ringo, Hoyt, and now Brown. And I guarantee I’ll see the same thing said by some crank next year when the collaboration with Diamond comes out.

First off, these people assume that they can pin down my “style”, which is funny considering the same dude wrote Ashok Vadal and Jimmy the Intern. I’ve already demonstrated that I don’t give a shit about tone or genre, can write wildly divergent PoV characters, and bounce around as I see fit from world to world, so it’s kind of amusing that somebody thinks that I’ve only got one style in my tool box. (I’ve also ghost written some shit that would blow your mind because none of you would ever in a million years guess it was me. I can be a chameleon when I feel like it.)

Second, there is this goofy idea that collaborations consist of some phoned in nonsense where the junior author does all the work and then the senior author just sticks his name on it in some cash grab. Sure. Some authors do that. I don’t. Feel free to ask any of those many authors I listed above about how hands off I am on all those books. I take a great deal of professional pride in the fact that all my collabs are actual collabs. Everybody who knows me knows that I’m too much of a workaholic and a control freak to not make sure something with my name on it represents me.

Plus, it is always kind of hilarious to watch people guess which character/scene was written by which author, as everybody continually gets it all wrong, and I never say shit because I like watching very self-assured people be incorrect. (this is particularly fun on the Ringo collabs)

While there’s interesting elements the pace of the story is torpid, the characters are somewhat flat and cliched and many scenes that should be immersive and exciting are very much just watching the action. I kept listening, hoping it would get better, but when redundant explanations started occurring that the reader is fully aware of, having seen all that info during the introduction, I called it quits. I’m about six chapters in and can’t take any more of the dull, remedial storytelling.

Oh ho ho ho. He ALMOST pulled that off! For the first bit he had me believing that he was an honest reviewer who simply had a conflict of taste (and taste is subjective and thus can’t be wrong) and wasn’t just another troll review. Except then he had to go and overreach by saying how many chapters he made it in.

Chapter six is 60 pages in of a 439 page book. Of the “dull and remedial” storytelling that occurs in those 60pages, 14 are a panicked evacuation/rescue mission like the fall of Saigon but with more mind control and giant robots, from one character’s perspective, then the rest is a heist story on a different planet that goes from subterfuge, to a street chase, to a train job, to riding a stolen mech into outer space, from a different character’s perspective. During those 60 pages we briefly introduce probably ten named characters, and though almost all of it is action sequences, we toss in a lot of backstory and world building to lay the groundwork.

If this guy found that intro torpid, he really needs to stop doing meth. That shit ain’t good for you. 😀 So there you have it people, if you are flying high on crank, Gun Runner is not for you. Also, quit scratching yourself. It makes sores.

The “redundant explanations” is amusing, considering that the change between our rough draft and the final, Toni Weisskopf had us PUT MORE EXPLANATIONS IN. Because behind the scenes John and I both come from fantasy/action/thriller backgrounds where you under explain until you can’t, and Toni had to educate us that sci-fi audiences tend to expect more clear laying of groundwork earlier on, so we didn’t need to explain how the fundamentals of the universe worked for the next 400 pages.

But what does Toni know? She’s only considered one of the most successful and prolific editors of sci-fi in the genre’s history.

“Oliver Wyman does a terrific job on narration, but even he can’t save Gun Runner. “

At least he didn’t bag on Ollie. Because Ollie rocks. Nobody was going to believe him if he did that.

“Not sure what is going on with Larry Correia.”

Well, I do have a newsletter you can sign up for if you are curious. 😀

“This is the second story I purchased, based on his name and have been disappointed with the results.”

Hmmm… curious. Out of my 25 books in half a dozen different genres/worlds. I’ve let you down twice with my profound torpor? Or, more likely my take on space opera ain’t your thing, but rather than just put a low rating on it because it wasn’t your thing, you had to pontificate about my lack of work ethic and dishonest business practices to try and scare other readers away?

Is he a sponsor for other authors now? ”

You caught me. I’m really billionaire James Patterson, and I keep 20 younger authors chained to computers in my basement dungeon.

 “Or is it his publisher using his name to draw sales?

Well duh. 😀

Publishing education time! Gather ’round aspiring authors and random internet cranks, and I’ll explain what a “collaboration” is. That’s when more than one writer gets together to write a story. My publisher, Baen, has a long and successful history of pairing authors together. Usually one of them is more famous than the other, which helps drive sales, and helps get the less known author’s name out there, which boosts the sales of their books. (though this isn’t always the case, like me and Ringo both being bestsellers when we teamed up, and some writers are just an endless powerhouse team up, more famous together than apart, like Niven and Pournelle, or “James S.A. Corey” which is Ty Frank and Daniel Abraham)

And here is a dirty little secret about these terrible cash grabs that us rich and famous authors do just to hoodwink poor customers like Johnny InternetRando… Collabs actually take LONGER than writing a book by yourself, and then we SPLIT the money. BRILLIANT! 😀

This charge is extra funny on Gun Runner however, considering that this is the book John Brown and I plotted live for a two hour panel in front of 200 people at LTUE.

Regardless, I’m aggravated with their misleading representation.

Okay, I actually snort laughed when I got to that line. I wasn’t going to say anything about this until I hit that sentence, and then I was all like, oh man, this bullshit has got to go on the blog. Just for educational purposes for other writers, because that’s so goofy. That was the point where my Benefit of the Doubt killed itself in shame.

What’s next? The ‘narrated by’ isn’t accurate either?

That’s not a bad idea. I was actually thinking the next book I’d put Oliver Wyman, Bronson Pinchot, AND Tim Gerrard Reynolds on the cover, and then 20 hours of audio would just be a repeating 30 second loop of Adam Baldwin making manatee noises. WE WILL MAKE MILLIONS!

Or as Wendell would say (for 20 hours straight!) Fleeerp mewhoo HOOOON!

However I bet that would still crack the top 10…. Hmmmmm… Damn it. That is actually tempting. Get thee behind me, Satan!

“Not happy with the bait and switch.”

Hahahahahahah Hahahah
Oh shit…
That’s awesome. 😀

Dude. See that cover? It has both our names on it. This isn’t one of those ZOMBIE TOM CLANCY in giant letters at the top with “presents” in little letters, and then tiny tiny print in the bottom corner “By JimBob ScrubHack” books. John and I wrote this book together.

Hell, I usually don’t go into that many details of who did what in a collab, but I’m going to here for educational purposes. I’ll even give you the timeline. We started this project clear back in 2015 (when I was less famous!) when we got ideas from my at the time 10 year old son, and then used those to plot an entire book over a two hour period in front of a live studio audience. When we got done, we looked at each other and said, wow… that’s actually pretty solid. We could write this.

And then it wasn’t until 2018(?) after the successful conclusion of some of my other collaborative contracts that Toni asked me if there were any other collabs I wanted to do. I pitched two, this one with John and another one with Steve which this reviewer will surely hate next year.

John is also a successful thriller writer (he got his start doing epic fantasy at Tor around the same time I wrote MHI. We did some book signings around the country together which is how we became friends). In 2018 we got together and did a more in depth brain storming session based on the panel we’d done at LTUE. Then I wrote a detailed, scene by scene outline, that was about 10k words if I recall correctly. We then hashed that out for a few weeks back and forth via email before John went to work.

I’m trying to recall file sizes now, so these might not be 100% accurate but they are close enough you get the idea. John wrote the rough draft over the next few months, sending me updates about every 20k words. I’d make comments and send them back. John put those together into a 100k rough over about 4 months and sent it to me, where the poor guy had to wait a couple of months because I was finishing up another book (Destroyer of Worlds I believe) that was on deadline. (and I can’t switch back and forth between worlds because it takes me about a week to find the right voice for a project)

I sent him back a bunch of notes and he revamped all those. (some day I will tell the tale of poor Bruce, who John loved, but who didn’t make my brutal uncaring cut!) John made a slew of changes and we ended up with about 100k of rough draft.

Other novel sent off, I took that 100k and chopped it down to about 90k, and then wrote it back up to 130k. And that was not -10k in one spot, + 40k in another. Those edits were spread throughout the whole thing. Every page. It took me about two straight months (because I edit/write at about half the pace I write/write).

To put this in perspective, from beginning to end for me to write a novel by myself is usually 4-6 months, but I’m so clever with all this bait and switching, that this collaborative method takes twice as long to turn in a product and afterwards I only get half the money. BRILLIANT… It’s almost like there are creative or artistic reasons to collaborate or something, but I’ll get to those.

Then John got the manuscript from me and went through it again with all my notes. At this point I think we were about 140k when he sent it back to me. I really liked it. I did one last small edit pass, and then sent it to Toni.

Toni went through it and came back to us with some changes that she felt were necessary. At this point that whole opening chapter, Fall of Gloss evacuation/rescue scene DID NOT EXIST. We’d only referred to those events in passing bits of backstory and conversations between Jackson, Jane, and the Captain. Toni is normally anti-prologue, however in this case she thought it was necessary to tell the story and set the themes.

And now here is the part that is really going to piss off our erstwhile mind-reading totally-not-a-troll reviewer… Because I’ve written a couple dozen books for Toni and know how to incorporate her edits, and we were now on the clock with the deadline approaching, and John had gone back to finishing up one of his books, I told John that I’d take care of all her edits, including writing what is now the intro. John had an idea for the new opening that he started on, but I’d just read a thing about the Fall of Saigon and wanted to get a visual equivalent to everyone trying to get on the Huey.

Yes… That first opening part that this reviewer managed to suffer through which he was so certain wasn’t MY voice? On the contrary, that’s the longest part of the whole book that I wrote pretty much by myself. I kicked it over to John after I was done and he had a few suggestions that I implemented, but that opening Holloway scene was mine.

So going back to his clever thesis of: “but I can say it’s definitely not Larry Correia’s style of writing. “
Whoops. 😀

(EDIT: final word count was 154k)

Okay, so goofy review out of the way, why should authors collaborate? I’ve written about this in depth in some of the Ask Correia posts, but it comes down to creative reasons. The book that you write with someone else is going to be different than the one you write yourself. This can be good or bad. It depends on each author’s strengths and whether you play to them or not. It’s also a learning process, because every time I write with some other author I inevitably pick up some new tool that I can add to my personal tool box for writing my own books.

Sometimes a collab can be a cash grab for the bigger name, but psychologically I’m not wired that way. I couldn’t put out a book without working on it (and the the logistics of the back and forth are going to make it take longer than I could do it by myself no matter what). But some authors do that sort of thing and their fans love it, so more power to them. I wasn’t joking when I called Patterson a billionaire. (If he’s not, he’s got to be close by now). Heck, if George Martin collaborated maybe all the GoT fans would have gotten a satisfying conclusion by now.

I wrote Gun Runner because I had a lot of fun plotting it with John, and he’s a cool guy to work with, and it was a new genre that I’d only ever messed with in short fiction. Every collaboration I’ve done has been for a different reason, but ultimately, the most important thing a writer can do is make sure they are having fun. Because if you keep having fun, then your fun is contagious through the page, and your readers have fun too.

If you do what internet cranks tell you to do, you’ll be miserable. And then your writing will be miserable. Its the same way I tune out all the needy types who bark at me You Should Be Writing X Instead of Y! Because series X is their favorite and they hate that I waste time on series Y. Except they’re idiots who don’t understand that creativity isn’t simply a faucet that you can turn on and off. I write series Y (and W, Z, 4, and !) because that is what is fun. And because I’m having fun with those, I can then go back and write more X without me ever getting tired or bored.

Collabs are the same way. They mix things up for me. Working with another author gives me a chance to step back and refocus on my craft. I can’t just take things for granted. I’ve got to think things through because I need to be able to explain why those are the things to do. I’ve been pretty consistently good for a long time across a bunch of different series, and I think one of the reasons I’ve been able to keep up that level of productivity/quality is because about every three books I write one with somebody else.

You also have to check your ego, because sometimes you’re wrong and the other guy is right. And recognizing that they’re right and why they’re right helps you become a better author.

That’s another reason that I don’t recommend collabs for two newbs starting out. From what I’ve seen those projects usually turn into train wrecks. Good collabs usually have an ultimate decision maker, but they work best when both of the collaborators already know how to write. (that said, some newbie collabs turn out really awesome, so once again, there are no hard and fast rule to this stuff. If you can make it work, it works)

But anyways, there you go. That’s how collaborations work for me.

Final note, honest reviews are awesome and appreciated. Authors love reviews, good, bad, the more the better. Just spare us all the mind reading and pontificating about our character and business practices because it’s fucking embarrassing. 😀

Gun Runner Release Updates

Gun Runner, the new sci-fi novel by me and John Brown, released yesterday. And it seems to be doing pretty good.

The orange tag means we hit #1 in a category on Amazon. Our full price book was stuck at #2 in some other categories last night because there’s a dude selling a 9 book series for a BUCK parked at #1. As a devout capitalist, all I can say to that is rock on, sir. 😀

Gun Runner on Amazon! Order here!
Autographed copies available from Uncle Hugo’s here!
Podcast discussion with the authors here!

The only source for autographed copies this time around is Uncle Hugo’s. John and I signed a ton of book plate stickers for them to insert into copies to then ship to people. However, apparently you guys overwhelmed the supply of autograph stickers yesterday and bought them all out. Don’t worry. Baen is overnighting me another package to sign. Then I’ll drive over to meet John half way (we live in the same state, but it’s about a two hour drive between us) we’ll sign them all, and then overnight them to Uncle Hugo’s so you guys won’t have to wait too long for your autograph copies.

I am really looking forward to seeing the reviews when you guys finish this. So far people seem to be enjoying it a lot. I’ve not even got to listen to the audiobook version myself yet, but apparently Oliver Wyman kills it on narration. But the guy is amazing on Monster Hunter, and he is a total pro, so I figured it would be awesome.

I saw one professional review so far that made me laugh (I will name no names, but I know this place hates my guts on a deep personal level, so I was impressed by their impartiality) because even they gave it a good review, though they had to warn readers that a constant and possibly upsetting theme in my work is how the individual little guy is more competent than the government or big corporations… and I was like, guilty as charged! 😀 I will happily own that one!

Also, for those who asked, yes, the role of Captain Holloway is played by Nick Searcy in my imagination. Somebody tell Nick and I’ll mail him a copy.