travel becomes escapism

How To Know When Travel Becomes Escapism

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Travel

There’s a certain point in every active traveler’s life when travel starts to lose its luster. Sometimes this happens when you start to develop an entitled attitude about traveling. Or sometimes you just go on the wrong type of trip for you. But for me, I realized that travel becomes escapism when you start to prioritize it over other things in your life.

Before I temporarily moved abroad, I went on a series of three trips within three months. These were ostensibly about getting some travel in, but really were about my desire to leave New York for a while. The first trip was to Greece and Egypt, the second was to Guatemala, and the third was to Japan and Cambodia. On all three trips I saw impressive wonders: Luxor Temple in Egypt, Tikal in Guatemala and Angkor Wat in Cambodia. But by the time I hit Angkor Wat I realized that this was when travel becomes escapism.

Instead of enjoying the three wonders on their own merits, I was comparing them. And contrasting them in ways that had nothing to do with anything. At that point I realized that I shouldn’t be using travel to mask the mundanity of my life in New York. I shouldn’t be less into Angkor Wat because I had just seen comparable wonders. Instead, I should be making travel a part of my life instead of a part of my lifestyle by obtaining a temporary residence.

While that’s just what I did, it’s not what everyone does. A lot of solo travelers (not that I am one of them) suffer from serious depression. And also get severe feelings of loneliness. That’s not because of travel itself. It’s because when travel becomes escapism it can ultimately turn into a form of wish fulfillment. And that type of fantasy can be isolating, especially if your friends and family don’t ‘get’ what you are doing.

Like everything else in life, travel needs to be approached with an open mind. But you also can’t let your brain leak out of the side of your head. You need to be aware of when travel becomes escapism and know when enough is enough. Seeing and experiencing different cultures is great and important. But not at expense of your own identity.  When you start to lose a grip on what’s important, when all your free time and energy is being expended travelling — well that’s when you’ve hit the point where travel becomes escapism.

Once you get to that point, it might be time to stop travelling. At least temporarily. The world is a vast place and it’s not going anywhere. In fact, it will be just fine with our without you, wherever you choose to go.


moving abroad on a budget

The Truth About Temporarily Moving To a Foreign Country on a Budget

Posted on 11 CommentsPosted in Travel

It’s hard to think that in the past year, I’ve been to around 10 countries. I’ve also lived abroad for a good chunk of that time. It turns out, living abroad is not that difficult, and you can move for way cheaper than you’d think. My initial perception is that moving abroad on a budget would not be easy or cost-effective. But not everything needs to be luxury travel. There’s plenty you can do while moving abroad on a budget to keep costs down and make it a memorable experience.

One of the biggest challenges of moving abroad on a budget is finding the right place to live. While Europe and Southeast Asia are popular places for those looking to move abroad, that doesn’t mean that will always be the best bet. Many cities in countries in these regions are expensive, so make sure to do your research and find a place that is affordable to your budget and will give you a high quality of life.

This is why I chose Granada, Spain when moving abroad on a budget. When searching around online for ‘top cities to retire to,’ Granada consistently came up on lists. That’s not to say I’m retired. I’m not, although from my lifestyle you might think I was. But before planning my move abroad, I searched on Spot a Home for the best deals. While I could have stayed in a hostel and looked around for a slightly better deal (and avoided a $200 service fee), I knew exactly where I was living, what my move in date was, and how long I’d be staying beforehand.

This allowed me to budget accordingly before I left New York. I knew exactly how much my living expenses would be beforehand. While there are always variables with moving (especially when moving abroad), it helps to have a sense of where you are living beforehand. Still, it’s important to understand that when moving abroad on a budget you need to be able to take your work with you. That’s not to say you need to be running your own business or trying to sell courses on how to run your own business. But it does mean that you want to be doing the kind of work that is sustainable and location-independent.

In the modern internet era, that kind of work generally boils down to digital marketing, coding, translation, web design and virtual assistance. Unfortunately, those jobs all require a pretty specific skill set. It’s actually one that needs to be learned if you’re planning on moving abroad on a budget. Alternatively, you can move abroad, stick in one city and teach English for a while. But I know that pay and lifestyle is not for me, and for a lot of people it might make more sense to budget beforehand.

At the end of the day, moving abroad is a personal choice. It can be isolating and aggravating, and you’ll often feel like a foreigner in the city that you’re attempting to call home. But if you’r ready to have a personal and life-affirming experience, then it’s the type of opportunity that you won’t want to miss.


before your first cruise

What You Need to Be Aware of Before You Go on a Cruise

Posted on 2 CommentsPosted in Travel

I recently went on a cruise with my family for my mother’s 60th birthday. While not my first cruise by any means, I realized there was not a lot I knew about cruises. As a well-traveled young adult, there’s a certain way I’m used to traveling. However, that doesn’t mean that a cruise isn’t a valid way to travel. If you prefer luxury accommodations and don’t care about seeing cultural sights, a cruise can be a good way to see parts of the world. In fact, the cruise we recently went on went to Messina, Capri, Athens, Rhodes, Santorini, and Mykonos all in the span of nine days. Still, there’s a lot you need to know before your first cruise. With that in mind, here are some tips and tricks, as well as ethical concerns, to keep in mind before your first cruise.


You Will Be Nickel and Dimed to Death

before your first cruise

Like all traveling, cruises aren’t priced as advertised. That’s perhaps the most important thing to know before your first cruise. Everything from the barely working satellite wifi ($150!) to the shore excursions and additional gratuities are not covered. At the minimum, expect to pay at least $200-$300 more than the advertised price. And try not to get sick or pay for any of the shore excursions. The doctor does not take insurance on the boat, and you need to pay out of pocket. The shore excursions are also way overpriced, and anything and everything can be arranged beforehand online for a fraction of the price.


The Workers are Not Payed a Minimum Wage

before your first cruise money

You don’t build a 40 billion dollar business by being ethical. Cruise lines know this and are looking to maximize every dollar. Using international laws, many cruise lines employ workers primarily from places like the Philippines and Eastern Europe. A lot of these workers are not paid what they should be getting paid. They are also trained to use ‘professional smiles’ and make all passengers feel pampered at all times. A lot of them even do it just to travel the world. This came increasingly apparent to me when I walked down the hall and saw three crew members laughing and smiling to each other. But as soon as I passed, they particularly stood to attention.

When I was younger and had gone on cruises, I was not aware that this was the case. I remember laughing waiters and stateroom attendants who made sure you were having a good time. But that’s exactly what you’re supposed to see. Everyone should know about this before your first cruise, and should plan accordingly.

You Will Probably Overeat so Lose a Few Pounds Before Your First Cruise

before your first cruise overeating

If there’s one thing in abundance on cruise lines, it’s food. And lots of it. I had nights where I eat lamb chomps, lobster tails and three types of cakes. I also probably gained around five pounds. Before your first cruise you should be aware that you will be eating a lot, especially if you don’t have a huge amount of self-control. Even at the dining hall you can order as many entrees, appetizers and desserts that you’d like.

For all of its faults, a cruise is an experience that everyone that can afford to should try. If you’re someone accustomed to luxury-style travel, it can even be a good deal. That being said, a cruise can feel difficult and confining if you’re a more experienced traveler. But for those that want an all-inclusive vacation, a cruise is more like a floating resort hotel. And if you know this before your first cruise, you could end up having a very memorable time.

why networking is bullshit for recent college graduates

Why Networking Is Bullshit for Recent College Graduates

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Career

If you’re like me (or most college students), you most likely graduated college without a particular career track in mind. Sure, you might have had a vague idea of what you wanted to do (social sciences or creative arts) or a low tier communications or psychology degree, but you most likely had no idea how to apply these soft skills. The best advice your college career center likely had for you was to network, as in go out and meet people who could magically give you a job, and you quickly realized that networking is bullshit for recent college graduates.

But with anyone with a year or two of post-college experience can tell you, that’s kind of bullshit. In fact, it’s straight bullshit. Networking is bullshit for recent college graduates for a number of reasons, mostly of which comes down to that you have nothing interesting to offer. With that in mind, here’s what you can do to get to the stage of your professional life where networking actually matters.


Do Irrelevant Shit for the First Few Years Out of College

Why Networking Is Bullshit for Recent College Graduates



Despite what’s drilled in to us, life is not a race against others. It’s only a race against your own sense of self-worth. After I graduated college, I would ask constantly ask myself the question “is your life better than it was a year ago?” And often the answer was no. That made me feel badly at the time, but it also just meant I wasn’t ready or capable to live the life that I wanted to lead yet. Or rather I didn’t know what that kind of life even looked like.


Instead, I took some pretty shitty jobs. I was a security guard at soccer games and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I drove a medical van and worked as an unlicensed cardio technician.  I was a cold-call salesman at a failing comic book company where I never made a dime. I did some low-level marketing work for a local business. I even started my own video game journalism publication. But most of all, I figured out the things I didn’t want to do, and more importantly I had context for them.



Take That Irrelevant Shit and Cobble it Together to Form Something Cohesive

Networking Is Bullshit for Recent College Graduates


Despite attending numerous networking events during this time, I still didn’t really have anything to offer. Sometimes, I still wonder if I do. But instead of leaning into my latest gig at Chipotle, I just applied for more jobs. Eventually I landed on an executive assistant gig (which eventually turned into a marketing job) at a medical staffing company. Very exciting, I know. But knowing that networking is bullshit for recent college graduates, I just applied anyway, among thousands of other jobs.


For some reason, the boss’ son called me back and hired me after three rounds of interviews all in the span of three days. It wasn’t the job I wanted, but it was the job I needed. I made it work by applying all of my previous experience into a cohesive whole. I worked there for a bit under seven months. My boss’ son, who managed the operations of the company, was a psycho. He was the kind of guy who asks you to work on a Saturday and then pulls up an hour late in his BMW. The kind of guy that has no awareness of the type of position he was in.


But I learned a lot from him. I learned exactly the kind of person I didn’t want to be, the kind of environment I didn’t want to work in. In my current remote job the very idea of ever being beholden to such an odious figure keeps me motivated and sane. Better to be writing this on a cruise ship to Rome than a sterile office where your coworkers are twice your age, after all.



Realize Networking Is Bullshit For Recent College Graduates Until People Want to Connect With You

stop binge watching TV


As John Mayer said, “there’s no such thing as the real world.” Realistically, you’re not actually going to live your life to the fullest. Nobody actually does. But what you can do is not waste your immediate time after college networking unless you already have a hard skill set. But for those of us with a soft skill set, it’s better to throws shit at the wall until it sticks. And then cultivate that shit into a career or at least a skill set that you can be proud of so that people actually want to talk to you.

Just as in the stock market, there are ups and or downs and even crashes in your post-college search for a career. But all of those valleys will ultimately lead to peaks if you work smart and figure out the kind of lifestyle you want to lead. Everything else is secondary.







ethics in games journalism

Ethics in Games Journalism — How To Know What Journalism is Ethical Or Not

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Journalism, Video Games

As a former video game journalist of little to moderate success, I’ve found that the industry has kind of passed me by since I quit a little over two years ago.  Still, with my experience as a games journalist at independent sites (and some bigger ones too), I do have a sense of what is ethical and what is not. While I’ve moved on to working in SEO and focusing my creative energies on my my comic book work and this blog, I often look back on my time as a game journalist and question some of the ethics in games journalism.  Despite what people may think, ethics in games journalism, and all journalism for that matter, is a legitimate issue. With that in mind, here are some ways I’ve found whether or not to tell if a publication is acting ethically or not.

Is There a Personal Relationship Involved?

ethics in games journalism

If it seems like nepotism, it’s probably nepotism. One of the first rules about journalism is that colleagues normalize ethics for each other. This means that if there are journalists that are uncomfortably close with PR representatives, then they probably also have friends who are also uncomfortably close with PR representatives. This has become a real problem in all forms of journalism, but particularly in product journalism. In terms of the ethics of games journalism, PR representatives manage all aspects of a publishers contact with the games press, from reviews, to previews to interviews, and define the standard of ethics in games journalism.

What this means in practical terms is that PR representatives tend to largely control the narrative around game releases. While larger outlets do have some autonomy due to brand recognition, blogs and mid-size publications are almost entirely beholden to PR representatives for access. This includes embargos on reviews – which are often not allowed to be posted until after a game is released. This often is not the case in other forms of product journalism, such as film or tech.

How is the Quality of the Content?

 ethics in games journalism

One of the biggest indicators of a publication’s ethics is the quality of content. This is particularly true in game journalism, where newsjacking  s a prevalent part of most sites’ coverage. With newsjacking, publications are not actually putting any effort into doing any of their own research or reporting. Instead they are relying on other outlets (and sometimes PR representatives) to do their coverage for them. They then regurgitate the story with their own slightly different personality-driven spin, giving credence to the argument that there is a lack of ethics in games journalism. This is all done while promoting the same content assets (screenshots, trailers etc.) and acting as hype men as opposed to critically reporting on and analyzing culture and games.


Ethics in Games Journalism Is Likely Not a Solvable Situation

 ethics in games journalism

Ultimately, we need to recognize that what has fostered this situation is the consumerism of the internet and expecting to read everything for free. As much as we want to hold ethics in games journalism to a higher standard, we are also not willing to fund it. That isn’t to say that no efforts are being made toward promoting quality reporting in games journalism. But it is to say that games journalism itself is not a sustainable outlet without any form of independent revenue. This is why a lot of games reviewers have turned to video. It’s a more sustainable outlet where you can use another site’s audience (mainly YouTube) to help traffic views in and gain ad revenue.

But having helped run an independent site for some time that in its peak got close to 60,000-80,000 views a month, I can say with certainty that audience is not what pays the bills. It’s access. It’s impossible to grow a publication without access to the companies that you are covering, regardless of what size game publication you run. This actually extends to all forms of product journalism, and even lifestyle journalism. But as long as we the mainstream is ok with lazy ethics in games journalism, it’s what we will continue to get.

Samurai jack final episode review

Is Samurai Jack Really a Different Show? It Sure Doesn’t Seem to Be

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Television

Even though I said I wasn’t going to binge watch TV anymore, I was of course going to make an exception for Samurai Jack. Although I watched it on a week by week basis, I found myself overall a little bit disappointed by the back half of the revival series. This is why I decided to write a Samurai Jack final episode review, to give the show my final opinion, which the world surely needed.

samurai jack final episode review

The first half of the new season of Samurai Jack flirted with being a different type of show. It forced Jack, and by extension the viewer, to deal with real, ethical questions. We also got to confront Jack’s extreme mental health issues and see the extent to where he had to go to survive for the past 50 years. Still, it was disappointing to see Jack not even make any pretenses at sacrificing his chance at victory for Ashi. Instead, Jack ends up going back to the past and undoing the future that is Aku.

For me at least, it felt like the season was going in a different direction. Depending on how you feel about the relationship between Ashi and Jack is how you will feel about the final battle. Of course, Ashi is able to break free of Aku’s control with “the power of love,” but its what happens after that that struck me as tonally off.

If any of you remember the excellent Prince of Persia reboot from 2008, that game ends with the titular Prince damning the world to save Elika. In the final moment (as seen in the video below) the Prince decides that the journey and bond that he made with Elika was more important than saving the world.

Of course, Jack’s quest is a lot more personal than the Prince’s, and it would have been unreasonable for Jack to damn the world for Ashi’s sake. But it does seem unusual and a bit rushed that in their final confrontation, the possibility is not even raised. Jack, and by extension the viewer, assumes that Jack can have his cake and eat it too by defeating Aku head-on.

In my Samurai Jack final episode review, the problem I want to confront is that by Jack choosing to seal away Aku (like his father before him), he could have prevented erasing millions of people from existence. This includes everyone he has ever met over the course of five seasons. Instead, Jack decides that he is the arbiter of their fates. That strikes me as an ethical dilemma that the show decided not to confront directly; would Jack willingly decide to return to the past knowing what would happen to Ashi and all of his friends and allies?

The first half of this season of Samurai Jack hinted at a show willing to ask these questions, which would actually force Jack to make a choice instead of just allowing him to be unwittingly affected by the consequences of his actions. But the follow through suggested to me that Samurai Jack’s tonal and thematic maturity was just a veneer. At the end of the day, this ending was a fitting conclusion for the show that came before it, but not necessarily for the show we’ve had the last 10 episodes. And to me, that seems like a let-down for all of the fans that were expecting a little more.



rediscover reading

How I Rediscovered My Love of Reading

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Reading

Now that I’ve stopped spending so much of my time watching TV, I’ve spent much more of my time reading books. This has been really good for me. Probably better than anything else I’ve undertaken in the past year, and that includes moving to Spain. Taking the time to rediscover reading has re-exposed me to a larger degree of narratives and perspectives than I’ve encountered in a while. I’ve found this important because when it comes down it, reading builds empathy.

When I was younger, even when in college, I was a voracious reader. I was the kind of kid that cut class to go read in the public library across the street. With nothing much going in High School beyond after-school sports practice and writing articles for the school paper, reading was a part of my daily life. Yes, I played a lot of video games as well (and still do). But during the grueling hours of school there was not much to do except read.

Since finishing college and experiencing the burnout of post-graduate life, I’ve had to rediscover reading. After being forced to read for school for so long (at some times, 2 books a week), reading kind of lost its luster. There were some books that have genuinely changed my world view from college, but overall a lot of it is a blur. At a certain point if you can’t even recall what you’ve read, is there even a point in reading?

rediscover reading

Like the above quote, my relationship with reading became multifaceted and a bit toxic. No longer was reading something I associated with pleasure or enjoyment. Now reading was just work. And hard work at that. There’s a reason that most of us that make New Year’s Resolutions to go to the gym end up stopping within a month or two. Instead, I realized, you need to make it into a routine. And not just any routine. It needs to be a routine you enjoy, one that is an integral part of your life.

Like anything worth doing, shaking up your life is hard. When your default is to Netflix and Chill (in all senses of the phrase), you’re not exactly ready to jump into a comprehensive history of ancient Rome. But keeping my reading list interesting is exactly what has kept reading interesting in general. If you just read one type of book you’re going to burn out, just like in college. Instead, it’s better to read a variety of books. Literary fiction and YA are great, but they aren’t the only types of books out there. Reading something outside of your perspective will actually help you gain some perspective.

Since working to rediscover reading, I’ve found that I’m actually enjoying my life more. Adding more perspectives has given me a lot more to look forward to and a lot more to discover.  Not only have I been able to use reading to understand the world around me, but it’s also helped me gain insight I haven’t had in the past. And that insight, in whatever form it may take, is what makes life worth living.

stop binge watching TV

Why I Don’t Binge Watch TV Anymore: Confessions of a Former Binge Watcher

Posted on 3 CommentsPosted in Television

At the beginning of this year, I decided to stop binge watching TV. That’s not to say that I don’t enjoy TV anymore. I still follow some of my favorite shows from week to week. But the days of knocking out a season of The Sopranos or Breaking Bad in the course of several days is behind me. It turns out, I’m actually way happier this way. Binge watching TV actually correlates strongly with depression and isolation, and I guess I’m not feeling either anymore. Still, the primary reason that I don’t binge watch TV anymore is that I just have more going on. With that in mind, here are some of the things I’ve been able to accomplish since I decided to stop binge watching TV.


I’ve Started Reading More Again

stop binge watching tv


As a creative, consuming storytelling and information is a huge part of my life. Since college, TV was my primary way of fulfilling those needs. However, once you’ve seen the best that TV has to offer, it’s actually mostly just crap. The Sopranos or The Wire  may have you thinking about life and other meaningful things, but seven seasons of Friends won’t actually teach you much except for the fact that everyone in NYC lives beyond their means and that there are apparently no black people in the known universe.

When you start to recognize that there isn’t much knowledge to be gained from most shows, you might start to realize that the best place to experience storytelling and gain information is actually books. That’s why after deciding to stop binge watching TV, I immediately started to read more. In fact, of the 35 books I plan to read this year, I’ve already read 20.  Not bad for a guy who regrettably binge watched Sons of Anarchy last year.


I Started This Blog

stop binge watching TV

One of the best things about reading more is it actually compels you to write more as well. This is actually pretty important as a writer. As my writing mentor once told me, “a writer is someone who writes.” After seeing the success that my girlfriend has gotten on her blog, I figured now was as good a time as ever to actually live up to that advice. While I still do work on creative writing occasionally, my day job is as a PR Manager for an SEO agency.

Aside for the monthly post I do for my company’s blog, I didn’t really have an outlet since I left the freelance writing world to publish consistently, especially on the things I wanted to write about. Now I’m close to three months in, but I certainly would not have had the time (or the ideas) if I was still bringing the boys up to speed by binge watching TV (sorry, no more Sons of Anarchy jokes).

I Go Out More

stop binge watching TV

Going out is a vague term. I wouldn’t say I drink more. But what I would say is that I make a bigger effort to do things. I certainty travel more now that I decided to stop binge watching TV. But that is mostly because of my improved financial situation. What I will say is that there is a correlation between stopping binge watching TV and getting out more. When you aren’t shackled to the TV it’s easier to go out and do things. Whether that’s going to a local bar and playing a game of chess or taking a day trip to the beach, it’s much easier to do things when you aren’t thinking about the latest episode of whatever TV show you are currently binging.

By Deciding To Stop Binge Watching TV, I Gained My Life Back

stop binge watching tv

When it comes down to it, I just have less free time than I used to. In college, you have only hours of activities and responsibility you need to see to each day. But when you are financially independent, there are other considerations at play. You need to work. You need to feed yourself.  The apartment isn’t going to clean itself (that last one is a lie, I never clean). But when you have a fuller schedule, something has to give. For me, that something is to stop binge watching TV.

One day, when I’m broke, single and fun-employed, I may go back to binge watching TV. Fortunately that day is not today, and hopefully not tomorrow. For now, with the exception of binge watching season 2 of Love on Netflix (it was about as satisfying as it sounds), I’ve made good on my pact to stop binge watching TV. But I’ll still eventually pick up from the midseason break of The Flash, Arrow, and Legends of Tomorrow. 

is viral style legit

Is Viral Style Legit? My Keyword Research Compels Me To Investigate

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Internet, Marketing

Now that I’m in the third month of my blog, I’m starting to see a downturn in the amount of traffic that I’m receiving. It’s probably because I’m chosen to write about over-saturated topics like politics lately, but a part of it is also because I haven’t done my research. Specifically, keyword research. For those in the know of SEO, keyword research is how  companies determine what consumers are searching for online, and how they can best rank for those search queries. A lot of publications also use SEO as a way to get more readers.

Given that a blog is some weird hybrid between the two, ineffective at both selling products and gaining new readers, I decided that keyword research was definitely for me. Using my professional experience in SEO, I took a look at what keywords I’m ranking for and was mostly not surprised. Aside for phrases that made sense, like variations of video game journalism, my blog was also rankings for the phrase is viral style legit.

This drove me to ask some compelling questions. What is viral style? And why is it legit? And most important of all, why does the keyword not even have a question mark? Like miracles, keyword research works in mysterious ways, so I quickly resolved to find out what is viral style legit actually means.

is viral style legit

After a quick Google search, I found out exactly what Viral Style is. According to the official website, it is the “100% free way to sell high quality t-shirts.” Armed with that pertinent information, I decided to mosey on over to the shop page to see what I would find.

is viral style legit

I got this helpful page, which didn’t really seem to load very quickly. It also wasn’t really relevant to my website. At all. As far as I’m aware, I’ve never attempted to capitalize on the custom t-shirt craze, or anything at all really because I don’t actually make money from this blog. It turns out though that this is a pretty common problem.

Despite having never typed the phrase, is viral style legit, into my website, irrelevant phrases can still come up in your keyword research. This could be because  some person out there is searching for the term, is viral style legit, and is trying to find websites with a contact form plugin. (In which case, I just did your work for you. You’re welcome). Or it could be because they see a vulnerability and are trying to hack or spam it with automated software. Or, realistically, we are all just being paranoid about irreverent keywords that are only appearing because Google Search console is notoriously unreliable.

So, is Viral Style legit?

is viral style legit

I honestly couldn’t tell you. But they do have a great t-shirt of Teddy ‘Swolesevelt’ (my hometown hero) which I’m now inclined to buy. Still, it’s kind of disconcerting when you find your website receiving the wrong type of traffic. I may not have a landing page or be selling anything, but I am looking for a legitimate readership. What I’m not looking for is the type of person who is wondering whether a custom t-shirt company is legitimate or not.

When you know you are ranking for the wrong type of keywords, such as is viral style legit, you won’t actually be getting traffic that is relevant for the types of things you are writing about. The best you can do is write a post like this to continue to court that type of irrelevant traffic, and try to convert it into an actual readership with your entertaining writing. Or you can just ignore it. That probably would have been better.

obamacare repeal

Obamacare Repeal Is At The Front Gates — Is Anyone Really Surprised?

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Uncategorized

Last time I wrote a politics post, I promised myself I’d take a break from writing politics. It doesn’t tend to get a lot of traffic and it’s a mostly self-serving topic. And aside for one foray into talking about how how to remove Donald Trump from Facebook, I did just that. But now that I’ve been reading about how Obamacare repeal just passed the House, and I feel like I have to say something about it.

Is anyone really surprised by this?

While Obamacare repeal failed last time, it wasn’t as though Republicans were just going to give up. This has been a cornerstone of their legislative agenda for the better part of a decade. It wasn’t just going to go away. But when Trump flips on major issues like NATO, healthcare, China and even Syria, it means that he’s learning how to play the game. It means he’s learning how to govern and make deals in Washington.

You can make fun of how he doesn’t know Civil War history all you want, but this seems to be a clear evolution of pushing forward a tangible legislative agenda. As Bernie Sanders said in February, Trump may not understood how the Constitution works back then, but he’s certainty starting to now. Deal-making and making individual concessions in bills is a clear part of how this all works, and Trump is looking to be a little more adept at this than anyone previously gave him credit for.

Still, this might be one of the biggest self-inflicted political wounds in American history. Voters in rural states aren’t going to love seeing their healthcare go up in smoke — even if they don’t understand what is going on right now. Ultimately, I think Republicans will end up regretting this vote, provided that it passes through the Senate. As of this writing, they don’t know how many people the American Health Care Act will cover, or how much it will cost. This isn’t a great way to reform the American health care system or even enact Obamacare repeal in general. This is how you cause a catastrophe like the travel ban.