Methodical Media Madness

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By Todd Perry  |  November 28, 2019

I watch Tucker Carlson's 8pm show on Fox, but writing this article helped me realize that he can't or won't relate to what I've experienced because he's still too much of a bro.

That's Tucker's secret. His audience thinks or pretends to think that he acts like a bro in order to accommodate their tastes and interests, but Tucker's role is based on his true, authentic self.

He became the Walter Cronkite of the Youtube generation, and everyone else at Fox had to modify their traditional media roles in order prop up the narrative that Tucker's a misunderstood intellectual who's playing a role, too, even though he's not.

That's funny. They run a tight ship over there at Fox, but the party's over. I'm pouring out the punch bowl. War is upon us!

I will continue watching the hilariousness ensue, sans punch, but let it be known that Tucker isn't working as hard or as smart behind the scenes for the American people as we think or pretend to think he is.

My secret is that I'm gravely exposed to some vastly complex but specific, self-reinforcing risk factors, and so I have to care about my story and my situation in order to avoid physically dying, but why should a guy like Tucker care?

There's a lot of Tuckers out there looking at what's happening to me and thinking, "I don't understand why that guy Todd is suffering so much, but everything about his life seems dreadful, and I don't want any part of it."

It's like reading about the farmer in India who lost all his crops for the year due to a perfect storm of bad luck, and there isn't enough drinking water for his family, in a region that's expected to get 15% less rain fall every year into the future, until the ocean rises twenty feet and displaces half the world's population.

What am I supposed to do about that? Don't they have similar problems in China?

We'll get to that, but it's important to understand that I would die soon if I focused on addressing problems like that instead of solving the invisible but acute problem that I'm facing, first, but Tucker would not die if he shifted focus.

The Tuckers of the world are hoping that misunderstood intellectuals like me will solve our biggest problems, while they continue playing it safe in the penthouse, but they misunderstand how hard I'm struggling just to survive.

People like Tucker assume that I'm playing it safe too, and that's hardening their resolve to keep playing it safe, because, while they might be loathe to say so, Tucker doesn't understand what's going on.

In contrast, I do understand what's going on, because I'm a computer programmer by trade, and I study the relationship between three big ideas as a side gig.

The first big idea is the impact that social media use has on our emotional lives and on our systems of belief.

That's my cover story.

The second big idea is unconscious bias due to facial features that look like facial expressions, and I need to understand this in order to survive. It's not optional. I'm getting marginalized to the point of death because people won't acknowledge that they're responding to my facial injury as if it's a facial expression.

It's the most insidious and cumulatively powerful example of gaslighting. Ever. People are doing stuff and then denying that they're doing it, as if their life depended on denying more and more of what's real.

It's war, plain and simple. This is why my situation is dire.

I also study the root causes for why people like Tucker and I support Trump even though he's rude, and I'm self-funding this effort with money that I got via working as a software engineer at several tech companies, one of which was Facebook.

Before that, I did a teaching fellowship at Phillips Exeter Academy during the 2001/2002 academic year, just weeks after graduating from college at the end of the summer, and I have fond memories of reading about the collapse of Enron in the print edition of The Wall Street Journal, at Exeter's noted library.

That was the context in which I attended the first iteration of The Wall Street Journal's Future of Everything Conference in May, 2018.

The conference was structured around staged talks that featured speakers and innovators like celebrity icon Sarah Jessica Parker and Tracy Chou, who I had worked with in Silicon Valley.

I also stumbled upon an unstaged podcast recording session that included three journalists.

One was moderating, one was a technology columnist whose initials are CM, and I don't remember anything about the third.

There were twenty people standing around the speakers, and the moderator asked, "Who owns Bitcoin?"

I raised my hand, and he asked me why I haven't sold, so I compared Bitcoin to a video game, on the record.

The session ended a few minutes later, but not before I added, "I'm the guy who advised Mark Zuckerberg's senior project in computer science in 2002, and then I became one of the first engineers at Facebook to focus full-time on fighting spam and fake news, and I'm curious why so few journalists have been willing to speak with me."

That was less than 18 months ago, but it was a comparatively innocent time. Zuck had recently testified before congress, and I was living in North Carolina.

I could still be framed as a guy who didn't know what's up.

The way I understand my situation now, at the end of 2019, is that if anyone were to force doctors, as a group, to decide whether I'm sane or not, it's almost like a law of physics that doctors would respond to that pressure by asserting on the record or in court, etc. that they believe I have a severe mental illness.

Fortunately for me, nobody's forcing the hand of any doctors with respect to this matter!

We know that what we know might be false, but, as a group, we can't immediately transcend what we think we know.

It's a paradox, and so it doesn't help to summarize the main problem.

The problem is that essentially all untrained people perceive my subtle facial injury as a facial expression, and this effect was the basis of Facebook's brand and company culture.

It's done.

What's happening to me should never happen to anyone, but nobody can prove that anyone's being mean to me.

In that context, it probably felt like work for the moderator to avoid waving me off, but he did a good job appearing to be amused, and he remarked that, "You might be a source, and sources are worth their weight in gold. You should talk to CM. He's a technology columnist."

CM approached me, and we had a nice chat. I mentioned that I had made waves within the secret FB group for the first 250 employees of FB, and the technology columnist closed by declaring that he needed to catch a train.

I got his email; I sent him lots of emails, and then I sent more and more emails to more and more journalists, but I didn't win the lottery.

Exactly one year later, in 2019, I returned to the WSJ conference, but not before moving to NYC, and I brought my whole wardrobe with me.

I've performed in drag shows, but the real reason why I dress up as a woman has to do with the paradox about whether or not I'm mentally ill.

Either way, I'm a guy who often dresses up like a woman, and I'm not subtle about it.

I joined talks by the guy from this VC firm, Initialized Capital, the guy from that Hudson Yards development in NYC, and the guy from a book, "Flash Boys," about high speed trading, and I passed CM in the hall while I was representing feminine style, but I'm not sure he recognized me.

I said, "Hello."

I didn't hear him reply, but I was dressed up in drag at a WSJ conference, and I saw CM see me.

I also sat in the front row during a scintillating talk that was moderated by another WSJ columnist who happens to be the only author other than my fellow technology pioneer, Clara Shih, who has written something about me in a printed book.

In my artsy black dress, even from across the room, it was obvious that I was a man dressed as a woman, and not only because the guy sitting next to me became inappropriately uncomfortable.

He stormed out of the place for no reason about halfway through the panel discussion, and I became noticeably concerned because he left some items in his chair, and I was worried that he might have planted a bomb, but I disabused myself of that notion after about thirty seconds of silent deliberation.

It was scary because I had just been openly hated on for cross dressing, and nobody, it seemed, was in a position to do anything meaningful in response, but I thought about it logically, and I concluded that fielding discontentment for my style choices in that space wasn't a material concern for me, at least not in comparison to the life threatening bullying and hate-based discrimination that I face every day for reasons that have nothing to do with cross dressing and which I rarely mention, because I have to either keep on quietly accommodating almost everyone's ignorance and disrespect for my experience, my awareness, my soul, my essence, and for so much more, or else I'll die from exposure to risk. I'll continue to choose life, but that doesn't mean the war's over.

Undeterred, I continued my reign of terror over the mainstream American media four months later at the 2019 New Yorker Magazine festival.

I started off with a bang and hit a hole in one on the second day by asking former Ohio governor and 2016 presidential candidate John Kasich, "What advice would you give Mark Zuckerberg."

I was wearing a men's suit, the moderator giggled, the crowd rustled with contentment, and John, if I may call him that, looked me in the eye from a few feet away, and he said something valid about how Europe might be doing a better job regulating social media than we are here, in America.

For a brief moment, everything was alright with me, with politics, and with the world of media and publishing in general, but then I saw David Remnick, the editor of The New Yorker, pretend to answer a couple of questions.

Everyone's role in orchestrating a cover up of what's been happening to me appears to have broken people like David, and I don't have the resources to care about his intentions.

I'm sure David's intentions are wonderful, but I'm getting bullied to death within the American political landscape. I have no better moves to write about, and so I move to fire the editor of The New Yorker.

We should make an example of David because his job is to notice contageous patterns like what's happening to me and do something, but he's metaphorically sprinting in the other direction while doing nothing.

The leaders of Facebook put him up to it, but guys like David have caused more harm within Facebook's regime than Tucker or CM.

His latest defense of the impeachment charade, alone, is enough to condemn his voice with prejudice!

David's a smart guy. If our roles were reversed, he would see that he, not I, won Facebook's race to cause the most harm on their watch, within their virtual coliseum, and it will be thanks to writers like me and not anyone with a positive rank according to him that he can expect to enjoy equal protection under the law, especially after we edit the rest of our story about what he did and didn't do.

On Sunday, I wore a sexy black dress with flirty, three quarter length sleeves, and I landed about six rows back from the stage where CNN analyst Jeffery Toobin was hosting a panel that included Bob Woodward, the most famous journalist of all time, along with two or three additional panelists.

They made predictions about how historians will define President Trump's legacy, and Bob dodged a question about social media by saying the word, "Watergate."

Audience Q&A followed, and I jumped right in there.

I was the third or fourth person in my line, and there were three or four lines, including the one on the balcony.

A guy who self-identified as "old" asked Bob why all the old guys in the Senate don't take one for the team of humanity and vote Trump out after he gets impeached.

Bob's answer was, "Grand pomposity."

I was intrigued but not convinced, and then the moderator abruptly gave me the floor.

He framed me as a person who really wanted to ask a question, and that was a good example of why CNN should be labeled as fake news.

In reality, I was controlling the energy in the room, and the moderator's bogus narrative about me just revealed that he was insecure.

The moderator couldn't have pulled it off without support, but if Bob Woodward had interrupted me to point out that I was getting more attention than him, that would have been top notch.

He could have also come out as a Trump supporter and started the revolution.

Sensing that possibility, I asked "I'm curious if anyone on the panel could estimate what percentage of the people in this room are stealth Trump supporters," and then I pulled my pink, "Women for Trump 2020," hat out of my Hello Kitty purse and put it on while the moderator said something about, "Stealth Trump supporters are ok. I would say that the more we have, the better...so do you have a question?"

I replied, "I did ask a question, and you didn't give a number!" in a reactionary and incongruously masculine tone.

I was also backing away from the microphone, so my voice appeared to trail off, but one of the women on the panel was kind enough to reply curtly, "10%," so I said, "Thank you," in a neutral tone and clumsily walked out of the auditorium in my three inch black heels.

I heard muffled laughter, and I felt a whiff of sadness because what's been happening to me is shockingly horrible and inhumane, and it's setting a toxic precedent that forces good people to bully each other in order to survive.

It's reasonable to feel hatred for the leaders of Facebook and maybe a few journalists who could have done something by now about the great impending train wreck of our time, but there's no utility in feeling hatred for this crew, so I don't.

I'm extremely efficient at keeping my mind and body clear of hatred. I have to be in order to survive, but the problem with accommodating all these aggressive people is that they have uniformly responded to my excellence and my good will with even more aggression and willful ignorance, so it's not about whether they should face consequences or not.

It's about knowing that many innocent people like me are going to suffer and maybe die unjustly because our leaders are negligent, and if imposing consequences on them will help stop the madness and prevent this kind of horror from taking root in the future, then it makes sense to impose consequences, and I pray those consequences will remain lawful and non-violent.

In conclusion, I requested an Uber black car at the curb outside, and I accepted a flyer from a woman who was organizing an anti-Trump protest later that week.

I had stuffed my Trump hat back in my purse, and I thought about mentioning to her that I was a Trump supporter, but I held back by default and thus, I did noting to prevent the seemingly nice woman to go on believing that I shared her conviction that President Trump is a bad man.

A month later, a post about FB appeared on FB within another secret group for former FB employees, and I secretively emailed a journalist in response, but now I need to catch a train.

Contrary to popular opinion, I don't live in a parallel universe. It's disappointing how much of the world I once knew has crumbled.

If nothing changes, the worldview of our elites will confine me to a virtual prison for the rest of my life, cut off from new information about interesting people and events, like the ones I described in this article, but it's not fate that we're chasing.

The narrative is a work in progress.

This article can also be read at the mirror: TODO


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