Happy New Year!
Our recap comes to a close! You should start back at January if you haven’t seen the rest.
There is no reason to think, just because it is 2018, the year of the sociopath is over. Our transition from rising to falling is not fully complete, until the inequality and the suffering by the poor reaches drastic levels. The most selfish members of the baby boomer generation have been working towards this for a long time, and they have more work to do.
Will the US midterm elections this year change anything? One of the main reasons we got President Trump was because the Democratic Party became pseudo-Republican. If that hasn’t changed, the midterms won’t really help anything. If that doesn’t change, the next major election won’t help anything, either. Here’s to hoping that the newer generations are able to take control before everything collapses.
- The Republicans continued their assault on non-rich people, passing ‘historic’ tax legislation. The new tax structure features significantly less tax burden for corporations, and ends the individual mandate for health coverage that was critical to the Affordable Care Act. There are temporary provisions to help regular people who have small businesses, but the large business (and investor) benefits are permanent.
- Australia legalized same-sex marriage, starting 2019.
- The Pentagon confirmed that it has a program to investigate “unidentified flying objects.”
- President Trump’s former national security advisor pled guilty to lying to the FBI regarding the Russia stuff.
- California experienced the Thomas Fire, its largest fire ever. Over 1000 buildings were destroyed, and 1 person was killed in an accident while fleeing.
- White people who get offended by black people protesting have decided to push back. In Indiana, a law is proposed that would force a football team to give refunds to any customers who get offended by kneeling during the pre-game anthem.
- A suicide bomber in New York injured 5 when his pipe bomb only partially exploded. There was also a terror attack planned by a vet in San Francisco, but it was stopped.
- Since everyone got tired of fighting, the US Supreme Court allowed Trump’s travel ban to go into effect. Trump doubled down on being a sociopath by making massive cuts to significant national parks. A couple of days later, he stoked the flames of war by officially recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, despite widespread criticism from the United Nations. The UN General Assembly voted 128 to 9 to denounce the decision.
- Trump was further criticized when he announced that the US will remove climate change from its list of national security threats.
- Mass shooting: 6 people were injured and 1 sheriff deputy was killed by a barricaded veteran who was armed with a rifle. The guy fired over 100 rounds. He had specifically set up the ambush, and had a history of problems. He was a libertarian apparently; maybe in his ideal USA this wouldn’t have been illegal.
- There was another big win for sociopaths when the Federal Communications Commission voted to repeal net neutrality, despite incredibly strong opposition throughout the country. This will be very lucrative for internet providers like Verizon, where the FCC’s chair used to work (and probably will work in the future).
While all of these things dominated our national news, we waged war around the world. In 2017, 14 US soldiers died in Afghanistan, which started 16 years ago. So many have died, and that’s only 1 of 7 official wars right now. We should resolve to stop doing this.
Also, for the second consecutive year, the US life expectancy dropped. The largest factor is the ongoing opioid crisis, which started when pharmaceutical manufacturers exploited a poorly cited letter to sell opioids. We should resolve to stop doing this.
2018 promises to the tumultuous. Are we finally at the point that all empires must face? Will life really be much different after we lose our status as the global leader? And how much longer can we batter the planet until none of this matters anymore? I don’t think any of these questions will be answered this year, but we’re getting closer.