FREE Podcast: Why do I spend my time fighting all this bullshit?
Or, Have We Reached Paradise Yet with the Rainbows and Marshmallows?
Anyone can listen (click here). You don’t have to be a subscriber.
Let me briefly cover the warm part first. You have no idea (or maybe you do) what it means for a writer to have an audience like this. Like you. People who want to read. Who show up. Who hang in there over time.
The word “appreciate” doesn’t begin to explain it. I salute and thank you. You’re like — very much like — an old friend — who comes to the house one day out of nowhere. VERY GLAD TO SEE YOU.
That’s prime number one. What follows is a longer explanation of the second thing.
On this podcast, I’ll be talking about why I keep writing at age 84, why I never fell for opportunities to write for the mainstream, why I stayed independent for the past 40 years, why I’ve been writing every day online for the past 22 years, and what it means to STAY INDEPENDENT.
Part of what’s happening in this culture is the silencing of independent voices. The voices who aren’t going along with the show, with the people in control.
Even in so-called alternative media today, there are rules. There are subjects writers aren’t supposed to touch. Why? Because the publishers are afraid of losing their audiences.
They’re CALCULATING how far they can go. They’re profiling their audiences and considering the topics that will fly and those that won’t.
They’re worried about pushback.
They’ve built a certain piece of turf and they want to protect it.
And this doesn’t just go for the permitted SUBJECTS of writing. It also goes for the permitted STYLES of writing.
“We can’t publish this piece. Our readers will object. They’ll be offended.”
Yeah, I understand that. I’ve been ignoring it for a long time.
For decades, I’ve been building my own outpost, my own island, my own media operation, my own independent place, come what may.
Because it was necessary, if I was going to keep writing, and keep writing the way I wanted to.
And along the way, I’ve been encouraging other writers to do the same.
ACTUAL writers are strange. They don’t go along to get along. Far worse, they’re always probing to find new ways of writing. They don’t stay the same. They HAVE TO keep looking for THE NEW. Otherwise, they’ll bore themselves to death.
That’s not a curse. It’s not some kind of victim back-story. It’s the plain truth.
This search for something new, something More, gives readers a different and unique experience. It may or may not be the kind of experience some readers want.
But the writer isn’t pandering to an audience.
I’m not cultivating you. I’m not tending to you like a garden. I’m not figuring all the possible angles when I write a piece. I’m not asking myself whether you’ll accept what I’m saying or the way I’m saying it.
If I were doing that, if that was the road I’d been walking all this time, I would have cut out long ago and gone to work for a major newspaper and worked my way up the line. By now I’d be a standard asshole who retired. I’d be seeing my doctor for various conditions. I’d be reminiscing with friends about days of yore and clucking about how odd the current culture is.
I never was on that road.
And when the road I HAD chosen became too predictable, I started a new one.
This one, here on substack, is a new one.
As I say, your support for my work is much appreciated. But I’m not tailoring my work to get that support. I’m not fishing in that water.
If you support what I’m doing, it’s because you want to. Which makes it all the better.
I’m at war with this culture. On all sorts of levels. I could mask that, hide it, pretend I’m doing something else, try to make things more comfortable, try to sound like a NY Times reporter who just happens to be covering subjects in a different way. I could be sober and self-contained and palatable.
But then I wouldn’t be WRITING. Not in my own eyes.
See, this is what I mean by INDEPENDENT. People use that word, but is it what they really want? Or do they want a pale shadow of it?
A long time ago, I wrote something like this: People want to make magic, but otherwise they want to stay exactly the same in their lives, but that’s impossible.
So I take the word INDEPENDENT very seriously. I keep taking it further.
When I read the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, I see INDEPENDENT and UNIQUE and INDIVIDUAL in extreme ways. As THEY WERE MEANT.
A culture is supposed to contain MANY, MANY individuals who are very different from each other. The culture is not supposed to embody freedom while at the same everybody embodies the same basic attitudes. That’s a fantasy. That isn’t freedom. That’s lip service. That’s fear of people who are genuinely different.
This culture is based on fear.
As I’ve been saying for many years, REALITY IS A CON.
It’s built to suck people in.
To give them all the same spiritual haircut.
Part of my decision to become a writer was based on my refusal to take the haircut. No matter what.
If you want to read what that’s like, what that comes out to, for one man who is a writer, you’re in the right place.
I’m going to talk about all this on the podcast. And more.
— Jon Rappoport
Subscribe to Jon Rappoport
Thousands of paid subscribers
The Hottest Takes on Culture