America’s Outrage Machine Is Spinning Us Into a Death Spiral

Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/Getty

At his “social media summit” Thursday, Donald Trump railed about “the tremendous dishonesty, bias, discrimination and suppression practiced by certain companies,” and how Twitter in particular was supposedly scheming to keep his followers count down. He applauded the pro-Trump meme-makers in attendance: “Some of you are extraordinary. The crap you think of is unbelievable.”

Bias among gatekeepers is a real concern, but the bigger, more fundamental problem is the crap.

Is it just me, or lately have Americans been living their lives just waiting for the other shoe to drop? You don’t have to be a sociologist to know that something is wrong with the world as we know it. Despite relative peace and prosperity, nobody really seems happy. Our culture is fraying. Our politics is coming unglued. We could probably generate a long list of factors that have contributed to this malaise and apathy. But I’m starting to wonder: Is America’s outrage machine—social media platforms, political activists and agitators, and cable news—tearing this country apart by incentivizing (and monetizing) conflict?

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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