About 20 years ago, my wife coined a phrase that may or may not have been used prior but has been used since. The wife referred to her own mother as 'some kind of psychic vampire' - a person who sucks the positives out of everything, to be able to paint the darkest and least optimistic picture. She was a 'every silver cloud has a black lining' kind of person, who would see the worst in everything and would probably find something wrong with winning the lottery. Over the years she mellowed, then she was struck down with dementia and so her youngest daughter (the wife's younger sister) inherited the mantle - something that has seemingly fit like a glove rather than be a burden on her shoulders.
There have been psychic vampires throughout history; we once called them pessimists, but in reality they're far worse than someone just expecting the worst thing to happen. Psychic vampires don't just play the worst case scenario game, they do it in such a way as to exasperate and deflate the person they're talking to. The worst case scenario pretty much always has aftershocks, which are aimed at deflating people even more and once, before the internet arrived, I used to sit and despair listening to half of my in-laws being stubbornly negative and selectively ignorant to allow their negative attitudes no wiggle room.
Going out Sunday? It won't just rain, it'll be a fucking monsoon. Job interview - you'll screw it up! Don't get nervous... WHATEVER YOU DO DON'T GET NERVOUS OR EVERYONE WILL DIE!!! Had a good day? These people will think of 50 ways to make you feel like your entire family has been wiped out by rabid frogs or even absurd Krauts. We all know a psychic vampire, whether it's the miserably frustrated wo/man at work, the neighbour or a member of our own family who we like but can't understand how they came to be so bitter and twisted and lacking in the joys of life.
That is Britain today.
Brexiteers are actually some of the most optimistic people out there at the moment. They view all the doom and gloom going on as sour grapes and now seem to have taken on a weird carpe diem attitude while simultaneously ignoring any talk of the future. The people who voted Remain are now called the Remoaners, because they're painting the Worst Case Scenarios and are being called for being so... pessimistic.
The irony is (and I have nothing scientific to back this up so the Vote Leave camp should accept this as 101% fact because no experts were involved in its decision) the people who now have a bright outlook are the people who used to be the psychic vampires and now they stand on their moral high ground, pointing at pessimists and accusing them of all the things they were guilty of. These are the same people that frowned at single mothers, at the disenfranchised, the addicts and most of all the foreigners, coming over here and stealing all the jobs that our feckless youth weren't interested in doing.
Once, I tuned into the Victoria Derbyshire show expecting some intelligent debate to act as a foil and a counterbalance to the Jeremy Kyle atrocity on the other side, but now it's a horror film to be watched through your fingers. I appreciate the BBC has to be seen to be unbiased and giving even and fair coverage to something, but I'd rather it was the news and not something that brings the worst out in humanity. Am I right in thinking that once the BBC would never have reprinted tweets or social media messages that show the worst kind of thinking in people? Or if they did it would be one example out of 10 rather than 60% of 10 which seems to be the policy now. Post Brexit vote people seem to think it's okay to be cunts, and publicly if necessary. We didn't vote to come out of the EU, we voted to make racism and xenophobia legal and being a twat socially acceptable.
I've been struggling for weeks now to understand what the ultimate gain is going to be. This agenda is obviously being driven by sections of the media - what do they want? A war? Civil unrest? How will a country whose people hate each other as much as they hate foreigners (or any other minority once the ball is rolling) be of any benefit to the media barons and politicians? How is inciting hatred a better thing in the long run than advocating peace and love?
The problem with the psychic vampire is they feed off of negativity; someone else's misery or worry feeds them - like trolls on the internet, of which I'm sure a lot of psychic vampires are. It must take a special kind of person to walk away from a heated insult-session on Facebook happily thinking they had successfully ruined a person's day. Misery loves company and I suppose it's easier to sit around and bitch than it is to be seen viewing the positives in anything. Smiling takes less facial muscles than frowning, but the country has a permanent scowl on at the moment - a frown's big brother...
Someone I know - who voted Leave - spent the six months leading up to the referendum pointing out parts of 'Project Fear' and how the vote was rigged. Now the vote has been cast, they are posting the equivalent of Remain memes because, presumably, Leave won and they didn't know how to be happy about it.
That's the thing with Psychic Vampires, seeing them genuinely happy for long periods of times is as unlikely as seeing the aurora borealis in Ethiopia. They are so set on draining the life out of any good thing, they do it to themselves and that's probably why they have become such unhappy and wilfully nasty people. A self-fulfilling prophecy started, I would guess, by and with the media's fascination with the worst 0.01% of the population.
We've always had a Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells and it was always more likely to receive a letter of complaint about something than it ever is to receive praise and even then the real Disgusteds of Tunbridge Wells were miniscule in comparison - maybe not even existing in a vehement enough form to write a letter. What DoTW did was allow the media/press to express disdain and give moral judgement without attributing it to anyone.
Another example would be when someone posts something on social media like, "Here's a picture of my dog on the moon!" To which the Psychic Vampire will list all of the reasons why you're being cruel or how it's been photoshopped. This is not the same as someone normal pointing out that some hateful piece of racist garbage has been photoshopped or manipulated with the express intention of inciting anger. Another example of this is when we're manipulated in a different way: "Here's a photo of a cancer victim, can we get an 'amen'". What it actually is is an old photo of Miley Cyrus having her head shaved for charidee and someone has either knowingly made this a me me me meme or is having a cruel laugh in a world where there are so many people devoid of a sense of humour that jokes are pointless. Is negative attention seeking something humans crave now, like dogs?
The Internet and then social media allowed anyone who wanted to be Disgusted of Wherever and this gradually metamorphosed creating a subsection of net users whose sole purpose is to demean, find fault or be as viciously nasty as they can for no reason whatsoever because they get a kick - a massive erection maybe - they also feel its okay to hide behind a firewall and hurl insults. It's what a troll is. Trolls probably splash their keyboards with jizzum because that's where they get their jollies, whereas I can't recall ever leaving a heated discussion on the net all priapic and thinking I'd changed someone's mind; nor did I ever think I was trolling, because I simply get no pleasure whatsoever in fighting vile hateful attitudes with whatever mood I'm in when I face it. People want to be nasty and want others to let them do it. They want freedom of speech but not freedom of criticism.
We have a world full of psychic vampires, Disgusteds of Tunbridge Wells and trolls and yet it's the people who want to be positive that are attacked; the people who are showing signs of being humanitarian who are vilified and the press is behind it all and I still don't know why and what they think they'll achieve at the end of it... One thing is sure, it'll probably get much worse before we reach a nadir.