I Don’t Want to Live in a World Like This Anymore

Unc and Phew have their most personal, intimate conversation to date. Both came into the podcast with specific, very different objectives, but – in the end – they find surprisingly powerful common ground. Listen now!

Show Notes

Phew coming in feeling down about things

  • Lots of change going on in his life
  • Like being sick but not realizing it until it really hits you
  • Two X refugee
  • Tried to do a rant-ish show
  • Screamed until he damaged his voice

Phew: I don’t think I’m OK

  • Didn’t realize how important it is to get on stage to do comedy
  • Absorbing everything happening in the news
  • Bombarded with all things “the news,” from all across the spectrum

It’s just too much

  • The sound-biting of everything
  • Death of real investigative analysis
  • Specific example: Jacob Blake/Kenosha
  • Another: the Rochester incident
  • If you just heard the sound bites, you’d be like “WTF?”
  • Until you hear the rest of the story, which potentially changes the entire story
  • What you get in your mind vs reality are night and day different

Phew: I don’t think I can take this any more

  • Everyone is angry at me, and the people themselves don’t have the facts
  • I think I’m checking out of a lot of this stuff
  • The death of objective journalism: RIP Journalism
  • Vast majority of thinking adults believe the media is biased

What’s changed recently

  • People used to care about being factually correct and the facts themselves
  • People now have a hubris that is endemic to all sides of the political spectrum
  • Everybody believes that they know better
  • A man without a country

Attacked wherever Phew goes

  • The “Group Who Hates Groups” Facebook group
  • Phew gets attacked there for being too conservative
  • Everywhere else, Phew gets attacked by liberals for not being liberal enough
  • Unc: thinks Phew is measured, respectful, courteous, thoughtful, and, even at his worst, not a dick
  • The Group Who Hates Groups, founded by Unc’s friend Tracy Lorenz

Unseemly behavior

  • How many people are patronizing and condescending
  • Both sides do this: in response to an attempt to provide real information and have a real conversation…
  • “You just need to go educate yourself, honey”
  • The Altucher story has become a liberal fetish, and that is wearing on Phew

The lubricant of destruction

  • Unc blames social media
  • The good news: everyone has voice
  • The bad news: everyone has a voice
  • It lubricates the rails of the destruction of our culture

So much easier to throw the third brick

  • Video from a liberal who has walked away
  • A very small percentage of people would be the first person to pick up a brick and throw it threw a window
  • But, once someone has throw the first brick, a much higher percentage would be the second to throw a brick
  • Once two people have thrown bricks, that many more will be willing to throw the third brick
  • Apply that concept to the worst behavior in social media

If we can’t have a conversation…

  • Sam Harris: Can We Pull Back from the Brink?
  • His main focus was the death of discourse
  • If we can no longer have a conversation, there is no way forward
  • Dave Chappelle: You have to be able to have a conversation

Which is more real: reality, or virtual reality?

  • Concepts: The hyperreal and virtualization
  • The virtual world has become more real than the real world
  • The internet world is now more real than the real world
  • You have to remind people that you are a real human being
  • People then either double down and increase the attack, or they take the conversation offline

Misplaced and misdirected emotions

  • None of the things being discussed are truly real to these people
  • Feelings people have for these things are so strong
  • Like getting mad at an avatar in a video game
  • Attaching all the anger and frustration the person may have and lashing out at people they don’t even know

This isn’t the country I grew up in

  • Really sad: people expressing gleeful envy at what Kyle Rittenhouse did, or the guy who shot the Trump supporter in Portland
  • This doesn’t feel like the country Phew grew up in
  • Unc: this doesn’t feel like the country from four months ago
  • Low information diet from Tim Ferriss’ 4-Hour Workweek
  • Cut down consumption by 90-95%
  • If something major happens, you will hear about it
  • Reduce your consumption for awhile

We are being played

  • We are being pitted against one another
  • High percentage of people arrested in riots are from elsewhere
  • People are being paid to protest
  • Ads for paid protestors

We’re mad at the wrong people

  • Being pissed off at the people who are not really doing the things you hate
  • So much of our anger is misplaced
  • Misdirection, smoke screen, focus on the race war while we take your rights away and shred the Constitution
  • Woman arrested in Australia for advocating resistance
  • Manufactured racial division that is specifically designed to distract us from other things

Race relations set back decades

  • Growing up in a really diverse culture
  • No tension whatsoever
  • Progressively improving race relations Unc’s entire life, until recently
  • We have set race relations 40-50 years
  • Unc is aware of the presence of African Americans, which is entirely new

Something smells 

  • The most incendiary things that were done were done by just one or two people
  • The guy with the umbrella in Minneapolis, who was picked up by a black SUV
  • Protestors tried to stop him
  • People dropping off pallets of bricks
  • Phew’s “feels like there is an outside element” vs Unc’s “I am positive there is an outside element
  • Then it becomes a question of who is the masterminding these actions

We need to stop the disbelief

  • We have to stop being incredulous about all of this
  • There is simply too much evidence to support the idea of there being an outside influence
  • Phew wants to not believe in such things
  • The natural progression from idealism to realism
  • Idealism is eroded by reality over the passage the time
  • Unc simply accepts the reality of human nature and of life itself: So, this is how it really is

Evil exists; we need to stop denying that

  • There is an evil element, to everything
  • “The line of good and evil is written across the heart of every man”
  • Where is your line drawn vs someone else’s
  • People are being paid to incite violence
  • Phew came into conversation mental health has taken its toll
  • Unc came into conversation recognizing that his anger has been misdirected
  • It’s not US who is doing this

Finding common ground

  • If we sat down and had a real conversation with someone on the other side, we’d probably have a very different view of things
  • Four hour dialogue with a person on the other side
  • Agreeing to disagree, and realizing that we agree on a lot of other things
  • Reasonable disagreements among reasonable people
  • You’re not such a bad guy after all

So many narratives

  • There is an active element trying to prevent meaningful conversation among people that disagree
  • There are plenty of people who hate America: Russia, China, Soros
  • Why isn’t China a bigger part of the conversation
  • We’re living through the greatest leveraging of narratives in world history
  • The consistency of the messaging from day to day
  • We’re being fed very specific messages
  • Analysis: What is the opposite of the message being pushed on us?

Unc: changing his ways

  • Unc: Has started writing a blog post about his related epiphany
  • Leads his demographic in use of the term “libtard”
  • I’d like to apologize to everyone I’ve ever attacked, dismissed, or made fun of
  • Phew: The idea that you feel that way gives me a lot of hope
  • Unc: I am course correcting, I have made things worse
  • We’re all on the same side of this

Identity politics must stop

  • This internal political division cannot continue
  • Supporting or defending things in which you don’t really believe
  • Brett Weinstein’s “the grift”
  • Context elicits behavior that would not exist outside of the specific context
  • Taking positions in which we really don’t believe for the purposes of the greater political good

I don’t want to live in this world like this anymore

  • The political climate almost forces us to take this collection of positions in which we may or may not believe
  • Like supporting Black Lives Matter: Unc supports black people, but not the specific agenda of BLM
  • Sam Harris’ latest podcast with Graham Wood
  • Willing to let go of everything in the interest of finding a better way
  • Mike Lurvey: You guys have respectful conversations; do more of that
  • We never know how much we might influence other people
  • Rather than throwing even more gas on the already raging fire, trying to do the exact opposite
  • Phew feels “nourished” from this conversation