On top of everything else -- the wars, banks, climate change, violence, etc. etc. -- we have been in some unattractive moods. If we were a toddler, I'd be calling for a time-out.
Mood 1: Somebody, somewhere, might be getting away with something.
Some of this suspicious anger is a collective surge of ordinary free-rider-phobia: the fear that someone is breaking the rules, lying, misrepresenting, etc.
But now a person can't even have a reasonable job or a day off without some lunatic getting all up in their face about it. It's like "OMG teachers get some vacation time and a bit of job security! Better reign them in!"
Mood 2: I need some stuff.
I know this has been percolating a long time and isn't really new, but still. You spend a few days on the streets of the American suburbs, as I have over the holidays, and pretty soon you're asking yourself: do we really need all these gigantic cars, enormous supermarkets, eighteen varieties of Coke? I've generally been a fan of consumer culture. But this is like eating a giant bag of candy all in one sitting. Gross.
Mood 3: Just look at that freak/moron/asshole.
I don't have a TV, and thank god, because I think the parade of shows inviting us to mock other people would have a bad effect on me. Why is it bullying when one kid does it to another, but fun reality TV when 2.2 million viewers and TLC do it some kid?
Here's to snapping out of it in 2013!