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Misuse of a Gift

Tonight I'm rewatching 「Scanner Darkly」; I enjoy it in a way similar to how I like 「Wild Palms」. It's a film for rare moods, representing a terrifying destruction of all order.

Like its semi-predecessor, 「Waking Life」, it has Alex Jones as an actor-of-sorts, playing a doomsday prophet not unlike who he is in real life. I find Alex Jones to be reprehensible, representing a dangerously wrong response to real political problems in the United States. Following his conspiracy theories is the mark of a fool; far too many false positives and entertainment mixed into an overcontrarian political perspectives, and what generally amounts to a disregard for the truth.

Another thing that is clear, similarly to a number of other worrisome people in politics, is that he has a certain kind of hypnotic charisma. Occasionaly people have speculated about leadership genes, or studied persuasion and induction of awe through mannerisms and tone. It's strange to call such a thing a gift when it is so dangerous, but whatever it is he is misusing it. I'm not certain if it would be better were it more properly used.

The other side of fear: not at the might of things opposing humanity, but at the fragility of the people.