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I’m done

The Internet is a drug with increasingly toxic effects. I’m done with it.

On Saturday I filled out Comcast’s online service cancellation form. Comcast being Comcast, their retention department will now call and arm wrestle me to to stay, as if my slow, grandfathered Internet service were a prize they’d do anything not to lose.

But I’m done.


This doesn’t mean I’m going away from blogging.

I did think about that. I even had a date in mind; but I couldn’t take my head from idea to plan. It seemed ungrateful, almost traitorous to stop. Not to mention a good way to get seriously poor, seriously fast.

So for all of the above reasons, I’m not ceasing to blog.

More likely, though, I’ll have something to say about once a week (Friday or Saturday, probably). And with luck it’ll be content-rich, although it’s not possible to guarantee that. I’ll write what the week brings, profound or shallow, long or short, relevant or irrelevant.

But I’ll do it from the library.

Those who’ve been around a while remember other times when I was offline due to money or to the simple fact of not having access after a life event. But this time I don’t foresee coming back.


The Art of Manliness had this great piece this weekend on how our current cultural move toward minimalism is one way of saying we feel politically helpless.

We retreat into cute, tiny cages and strip our lives (or so we think) of complications because we realize the concept of citizen empowerment is mostly a lie. Some of us go back to family and farm when we realize we’re not going anywhere but into danger, but the urban majority creates a gospel of smallness and purity — purity in what we put into our bodies and how it’s produced and the virtues of small environmental footprints and such. With Marie Kondo’s moonbat notions of keeping only those possessions that “spark joy” being just the latest and most extreme manifestation.

How did we get to Marie Kondo? How did we ever get to the point where even men claim inspiration from that most delicately unrealistic of all household philosophies? Just because it’s minimalist to the point of being Eloilike?


I understand retreat. That very, very first line in my very, very first “political” book was born from a need to retreat and regroup around our own personal lives.

It was about retreat, but rising from defeat and taking some more productive direction against tyranny.

I’ve never been opposed to retreating, as opposed to being stuck engaging an overwhelming enemy head-on using their own tools on their own turf. But there’s retreating to a cave for respite and regrouping and there’s retreating to a cage and pulling the door shut on yourself.

Which it seems more and more people are doing.


There is a third course, though, between a strategic retreat/regroup and an attempt to curl up like a worm, making yourself small to avoid pain.

The third course isn’t for everyone and rarely ever for the young. But it is to withdraw from everyday life, choosing a retreat, but to make the retreat itself your resistance and your statement. You’re not there to re-form the ranks for battle; nor are you there entirely for safety (although, that, too).

You retreat from the world of everyday in hopes of focusing on some higher reality. Your turned back speaks for you — and the message is clear and sometimes surprisingly threatening.

Or at least you tell yourself a story like that. The reality may fail to live up to the plan, if plan there is. Could be you’re actually becoming useless while deluding yourself.

Doing it right takes discipline, focus, and a high toleration for boredom, traits I am not known for. It takes confidence and a strong belief in one’s own beliefs. Good luck with that.

But this is history’s course: Societies slipping beyond salvation produce hermits whose very lives are a statement and a rebuke.


I recently reached A Certain Age. Until a couple years ago, I saw getting older as all beer & skittles (although I don’t like beer and have no idea what skittles are in that context). Then over three or so, I’ve begun to glimpse what they say about old age not being for sissies. I’m still in generally decent shape, but things when they hit, hit hard, and often two or three hit at once.

I’ve become increasingly impatient, looking around the ‘Net and not only not finding interesting news, but finding more and more cruel, vulgar drivel. And sadly finding less and less commitment to liberty. The speech police, the economic tyrants, the cultural destroyers, and the anti-gun fanatics who want us dead are all in the ascendancy. And there doesn’t even seem to be a principled libertarian resistance any more.

I, myself, feel as if I have no answers. I just look back and … cheer at the occasional light in the darkness, hoping (and sometimes even believing) some 30-something will be rising, torch in hand.

But I am done.


I have no idea exactly what I’m going to do during hours once occupied by the ‘Net or Netflix or finding material for that almost-daily blog. No plan. I just know that life is short. And as addictive and perpetually tempting as the online world is, I don’t care to spend however long I’ve got — be it two years or 20 — in that combination of an opium den and medieval madhouse.

More as I go along …


  1. Fred M.
    Fred M. January 27, 2019 1:49 pm

    You are only saying what many of us feel; and you never have to explain or apologize for wanting to steer your ship back on a course.of your choosing, not one chosen for you by the increasing pressures from all sides. You just do what you need to do and if you need us, we’ll be there.
    Be well
    Fred M.

  2. ~Qjay
    ~Qjay January 27, 2019 2:06 pm

    I feel the same way quite often, Claire.
    I hope to see a post about you and Ava in the woods every week or two.
    There is plenty of good to still be found online, but you have to work to seek it out, and you have to avoid the outrageous garbage very carefully. They have made it hard to find anything worth reading on here, but it’s still available.

    Your ennui is real, I hope it gets better.
    Much love, and try for Wednesday’s and Weekends.

  3. Jorge
    Jorge January 27, 2019 2:14 pm

    What Fred said. You have a lot of friends, we are here.

    I sometimes wonder if I have taken that third course or if I have curled up into a fetal position. Sometimes I think it is one, sometimes the other.

    In any event I am powerless against the even the tiny (by comparison) government in the land where I live. However I do have the “power” not to buy poison from Cargill or Bayer or BASF or …. I do have the “power” to raise my own food, to fix my own plumbing. To barter instead of using cash. To find “joy” in things I can do make and myself, using my mind and my hands directly as opposed to having those things done by others in return for fiat currency.

    Enjoy your time away, however long it may be. I look forward to your weekly posts.

  4. Comrade X
    Comrade X January 27, 2019 2:25 pm

    I feel as if I am on the same path just haven’t gotten as far down it yet.

    Retreat and Regroup, I would add one other R; Reprioritizes.

  5. SolarJohn
    SolarJohn January 27, 2019 2:25 pm

    I’m proud of you!

  6. James Wesley, Rawles
    James Wesley, Rawles January 27, 2019 3:37 pm

    Claire: I think that your plan to switch to weekly posts make sense. I often feel a bit burned out, posting daily. You can compose what you want offline and put it on a USB memory stick. Then carry that to the library, at intervals. Bing-Bang-Bam, it can then be posted in just a couple of minutes. A weekly posting schedule is also more conducive to traveling–whether for fun or, God Forbid, by necessity. Stay Safe. Stay Alert. Blessings, – Jim Rawles

  7. Joel
    Joel January 27, 2019 3:47 pm

    I also used to spend a lot of time trying to find fodder for my blog on the net. But it grew more and more a dispiriting use of my time. The news has always been slanted one way or another, even before the Internet when it was all TV, radio, newspapers and magazines. But now it’s like a daily schoolyard slap fight. Too much devotion to it isn’t good for anyone.

  8. Ron Johnson
    Ron Johnson January 27, 2019 5:04 pm

    We lost a good friend today. Cancer. 56 years old. Life is short, and nothing says “don’t waste time” like an untimely reminder.

    If the internet is overwhelming you with meaningless shite, you are right in disconnecting it. What did Nietzsche say? Something about not being a ‘flyswatter.’

    I see myself heading there. Just not yet. Not yet.

  9. Bob G
    Bob G January 27, 2019 6:31 pm

    It sounds like a smart move. Life is too short — regardless of age — to spend it with the mob that inhabits many parts of the ‘Net these days. Twitter, for example, has gone from being fun to a full-on hate-fest. I’m sure I speak for many people in saying that I’ll look forward to whatever you choose to post. You are one of the voices of sanity in an increasingly crazy world.

    All my best,

  10. kentmcmanigal
    kentmcmanigal January 27, 2019 7:13 pm

    I don’t know if it’s a good thing or not, but blogging helps me more than it hurts– but maybe it’s because I don’t care much what the “news” (and especially not the political news) is. Sure, it sometimes gets through, but I don’t go seeking it out. It has nothing to do with liberty, anyway, and that’s what I care about.
    I invite anyone who feels like it to check out my blog. I’m certainly no Claire Wolfe but I am who I am.

  11. Nathan Hail
    Nathan Hail January 27, 2019 8:18 pm

    You gotta do whatever your mind tells you to do…
    I would like to thank you for what you have already done, though.
    You may find something NEW to do…
    Best of Luck !
    P.S.- I’m the person who bought 3 of your record albums when you were raising some dough one time- Volunteers, It’s A Beautiful Day, and I don’t remember the other one. I still listen to them.

  12. StevefromMA
    StevefromMA January 27, 2019 8:57 pm

    I don’t write much but I read. Amazing how many of us feel the same way but the web has got us. At this late point in my life I am a news and idea consumer, not a producer of anything but waste of various types. Nevertheless, somewhat old, somewhat disabled, somewhat far from anyone else who has taken the red pill…it’s the daily fix I hate but need. Maybe others are like that, unable to find a like community except online. I look forward to your weekly posts.

  13. Pat
    Pat January 28, 2019 2:06 am

    If there is anything worthwhile being said these days, it is being said here and a few other choice places – but none of it is mainstream, and mainstream has taken over the internet as well as elsewhere.

    I’m not online as much as I was, but think that quality is more important than quantity – so, like others, am looking forward to the “weekly review”, Claire.

    And Good For You for making a choice that is Right for you, no matter where it leads, no matter how it affects others.

  14. Jolly
    Jolly January 28, 2019 6:56 am

    It’s been hard lately. Seems like everything is going into the toilet. Then I see those kids from Kentucky, and I’m bolstered a bit. Not because they’re Christians or anything – I’m not, but because they had the gumption to NOT apologize. Last night, my oldest son ( 25 ) came into my office and we chatted for a while. In the past, I could make frequent references to history that he didn’t know about. Last night, he blew me away with a comprehensive understanding of things from Rome to Charlemagne to the American Revolution to WWI. I had to reach back into an obscure tidbit about the war between the states to get something he didn’t have at his extemporaneous touch. I don’t know when that happened. He’s always been a contradiction of focus and fuzziness: knew he wanted to go into medicine – plays games a *lot* more than his parents think he should. His younger brother ( 17 ) – always interested in history – apparently infected his older brother with the virus. Strange.
    There is hope, and one has to look at it like a George Carlin – not give a shit. Well, maybe? Or know that we’re living in interesting times and maybe try to be like Claudius and write a history. There will be people who appreciate a different perspective.

    PS( I’m not sure I agree about the minimalist views. I take the viewpoint that most people’s STUFF owns them, rather than people owning the stuff. I live in a large house whose contents I largely don’t care about. I’m preparing a 5×10 trailer for traveling and camping, which I think should be plenty. )

  15. Owl
    Owl January 28, 2019 9:03 am

    Claire has to do what is right for Claire.
    Owl has to do what is right for Owl.
    Every individual has to do what is right for them – there is no universal.

    Looking forward to whatever Claire wants to say, whenever Claire wants to say it – when it is right for Claire.

  16. larryarnold
    larryarnold January 28, 2019 9:06 am

    The internet, despite what many would like us to believe, is not Real Life.

    Last week, Sunday to Saturday, was our district stock show, held in our Youth Event Center. It’s the fifth largest stock show in Texas. Elementary school kids were herding around 250 lb. pigs, and steers that weigh four times that, plus sheep and goats. Categories so large there may be first through twenty-fifth place winners. High school seniors with a dozen shows under their belts who next year will go off to college on their stock show winnings. Parents, grandparents and great-grandparents volunteering to work the event, some even after their own kids are grown and out on their own. Dedicated ag-extension pros running it. A wide range of local businesses and individuals buying the auctioned animals to provide kids funding for next year’s animals and college; and donating cash and services to underwrite expenses. Support and encouragement from the sheriff and other county officials.

    These are people you won’t find on F*ceb##k, who don’t have time to whine.

    And that’s just one of many 4-H and FFA programs.

    Our local, very liberal, church-related, small private university has a state-champion shotgun team, and is starting a varsity air-rifle program. Last Saturday I had a full class of license to carry students, and my “Winning the Self-Defense Encounter” class is filling. Thirty percent of Texas school districts have faculty carrying handguns.

    Claire, perhaps what you need to find is local, IRL, as you withdraw from the “reality show” www.

  17. MP
    MP January 28, 2019 9:56 am

    I understand so well what you are saying, Claire. I have watched the Internet morph for over 25 years and after an initial uptick in quality, the trend has been continuously downward overall. And the pace of the decay has increased steadily.

    Lately, in spite of hundreds (or more) of bookmarks, there are about 5-10 sites I try to check daily and a few more that I visit weekly. This site will move from the first group to the latter, another sad milestone in this process.

    But more power to you! I hope my life circumstances allow me to follow suit in the not-so-distant future.

  18. brew
    brew January 28, 2019 11:58 am

    I notice that there aren’t any “please don’t go” outcries – not because folks don’t care, but because by and large we ‘get it’.

    Virtually unlimited content at my fingertips and like some others I just visit a few select sites on a regular basis. And there’s just so much crap and kruft out there, all the while becoming more and more toxic, it just isn’t worth the time and effort to even bother looking any more….

    I intend to stay connected to do the writing I have in mind for the future, but then again, pulling the plug and just going to the public library might just work out too…

  19. FishOrMan
    FishOrMan January 28, 2019 12:22 pm

    Just skipped over to use your Amazon links. Happy to see the news you are taking control and making healthy choices in your life. I’ve been stepping back from internet for awhile now, (at least all of the “social” and most “news” sites — nothing is daily anymore). Hope stepping back for you opens up some time in your world for bigger and better things.

    Building and remodeling fills lots of my free time. And sunshine seems to be arriving early around here! Yes!!! Love YOU!

  20. Patrick Fowler
    Patrick Fowler January 28, 2019 1:05 pm

    Hi Claire is the cabel staying , the forum I mean , ? Are you better now ? Good luck with your new approach , Thanx for the inspirations . Patrick

  21. The Real Kurt
    The Real Kurt January 28, 2019 11:00 pm


    I certainly understand your difficulty with the Internet. It has been prefigured by the old proverb (of various versions and attributions): “Bad news an travel half the globe while truth is pulling up its pants”.

    The Internet seems to be suffering from a Gresham’s Law of news – the fake/vicious/foul is driving our the real/hopeful/good, but that will not, and cannot last.

    We all are disheartened from time to time, and for varying lengths of time. I hope that your disillusionment is remedied by exposure to nature, and a retreat, for a time, from the hustle, bustle and inanity of the Internet to collect yourself.

    I also look forward to your (reduced) posts.

    Kurt – In Kenmore, at the top of the lake

  22. just waiting
    just waiting January 29, 2019 9:43 am

    Glad to see you’re feeling better Claire.
    I’ve always found the days after sickness(and unfortunately I have far too many of them) to be a good time to reflect and reevaluate the things I did without during the illness, and whether I want to keep them as part of my life. Sounds like you’re doing the same.
    I’ve tried to get away from the internet too. While its nice to know what’s happening in the big wide world, I can glean that from the headlines on a half a dozen sites and very little of it will impact my life in my remote community.
    So instead of worrying about what’s happening out there, I got involved in what’s happening right here. Yup, Mole. Hate politics, but find the process of governance to be immensely interesting. In a sparsely populated area, one person really can have their voice and make a difference on the things that actually DO have an effect on my life.
    Like so many of us, I’m more self gov or anarchistic, but gov will exist, might as well spend some time having the one I want.

  23. Claire
    Claire January 29, 2019 12:12 pm

    Patrick Fowler — The forums will stay online, but I’d love to find someone to take over my roles in approving and registering new members and doing the occasional admin job.

  24. Claire
    Claire January 29, 2019 12:17 pm

    “I notice that there aren’t any “please don’t go” outcries – not because folks don’t care, but because by and large we ‘get it’.”

    brew — Oh yes, you nailed that. It seems that nearly everybody these days is limiting their online exposure. Not everybody can give up the ‘Net and not all that many want to. But still. I don’t think anybody’s unaware of the toxicity, the viciousness, the empty-headed folly, and the all-Trump-all-the-time obsessions that have taken over the Web. I hope The Real Kurt is right and there will be a turnaround. And a turnaround in surveillance, too; would that be too much to ask?

    But for me, it’s above all a drug — the only thing I’ve ever become addicted to. And how many millions have it worse?

  25. Claire
    Claire January 29, 2019 12:18 pm

    “These are people you won’t find on F*ceb##k, who don’t have time to whine.”

    Oh yeah, LarryA. The Real World. It still lives!

  26. Claire
    Claire January 29, 2019 12:30 pm

    “PS( I’m not sure I agree about the minimalist views. I take the viewpoint that most people’s STUFF owns them, rather than people owning the stuff.”

    Jolly — You’re right in a way. And I agree that minimalism itself isn’t a problem (even if it is a sign that many of us want to pull our little shells around us and disappear). My remark about Elois was specifically directed at Marie Kondo — whose particular philosophy (if you can call obsession a philosophy) is truly anti-real-life.

    Read everything below “A head in the clouds” on this long post from 2015. It explains what I mean about Kondo and why I view her notions as dangerous folly.

  27. Claire
    Claire January 29, 2019 12:37 pm

    I’d like to make a few more individual replies. But it’s time to get offline and into real life.

    So thank you for understanding, for being on the same wavelength, for being on a different wavelength and saying it so well, for ideas, for pursuing your own freedoms, and … for the love. I’ve said it before. I’ll say it again. I’ve got the world’s best blog readers.

  28. John Wilder
    John Wilder January 30, 2019 12:33 am

    Like everyone else, I was holding my breath . . . but I very much understand!

  29. Antibubba
    Antibubba February 3, 2019 9:59 pm

    I just took myself off F*c*b**k for a while. It’s really difficult, because it ties me to friends and family. But it (and most everything else) is toxic, and it’s good to get away.

    Good luck, Ms. Wolfe.

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