Bubbles
1 min read

Bubbles

On the rise of fuckitism.
After the party, Las Vegas, 2011.

Alex Danco points out that bubbles in finance, politics or attention usually come in two flavors: the belief that the future will look just like the present ('We've finally got this figured out!"); and the rock-solid conviction that the future will be completely different ("Flying cars! Transporter beams!").

Now, a third type is emerging: The future doesn't matter.

Increasingly, ideas and actions are instantly embraced and wildly inflated, only to be quickly discarded when the next fashion comes along. It's life as a video game, watching players do and say outlandish things because, if it doesn't work out, you just respawn.

I call it fuckitism. YOLO now, YOLO tomorrow, YOLO forever.

In finance, it's Millennials flipping traditional investing on its ear, gamifying it and turning it into something between gambling and blood sport

In culture, it's social media's amplification and likes creating a fast-moving, inflationary market in provocation. Today's outrage is today's currency. And, like any form of capital, some learn how to multiply it very efficiently. In this environment, the noise matters more than the outcome, the battle cry more than the battle plan.

In politics? It's Donald Trump, whose tweet-of-the-moment governing embraces fuckitism three times before breakfast and four on Sunday. But don't get triumphant; he's as much symptom as contagion, and he's hardly alone.

Now, finance has always had fools, culture has always had catfights and politics (at least, American politics) has never been genteel. But even if the archetypes are the same, the velocity and volume are now very, very different.

Is that important? I guess we'll find out.