Remember 2011? We killed Osama and Steve Jobs, and Bridesmaids made us all fall in love with diarrhea jokes again. But it was also a time of rationality. Occupy Wall Street made the 99 percent think they could make a difference. People were ready for a change, and the world seemed wide open.
In 2016, shit went right off the rails, and we all know it. 50 percent of all famous people died, we elected Donald "Tweet Goblin" Trump, England decided to become its own planet or something, and Russia just can't stop being evil. Small wonder that the shit we consider normal today would have been bat-diarrhea-insane just five years ago. Check out these ridiculous, real headlines from the past year, and imagine telling them to your 2011 self. Now imagine the sting in your cheeks as 2011-you smacks now-you not just for lying, but for lying unconvincingly.
Donald Trump Costs NYC Millions By Refusing To Move Into The White House
The Story: Newly elected President Trump has decided he prefers his apartment in New York to that ramshackle shanty in Washington that's already had over 40 previous owners. His need to stay home, as well as all of his kids and grandkids, means that millions will be spent on security to make sure we don't lose him in traffic on the way to some kind of war room meeting, financial summit, or secret rendezvous with Kanye.
2011's Reaction: Firstly, if you said "President Trump" to anyone back in 2011, they would have both laughed in your face for being stupid and spit in your eye for being stupider. Obviously Donald Trump would never be elected president of the United States. He wouldn't be elected trustee of the local school board.
To be fair, if you'd said "President Trump" in, say, October of 2016, you would have gotten the same reaction. But the bigger issue here is the million-dollar babysitting gig New York just got trying to watch Trump, his kids, and all his assorted hairpieces. Why the hell would a millionaire president and his adult children need to stay in their solid gold hotel, anyway? The White House has secret JFK sex tunnels and the bedroom Lincoln made his hat in or something.
The Anti-Defamation League Declared Pepe The Frog A Hate Symbol
The Story: A silly-ass meme from the corners of 4chan and Reddit has been adopted by Trump supporters and racists. He's now basically a smirking green swastika.
2011's Reaction: At any point in human history, if you were to present someone with a headline about a frog being declared a hate symbol, you'd get yourself a raised eyebrow at the very least, and maybe someone putting a cap on that bottle you've been sipping from. That a crudely drawn cartoon frog needs to be declared anything by anyone speaks volumes to how far 2016 has sunk.
Think of it this way: Imagine the NAACP having to declare Scooby-Doo a threat to African American culture. Or GLAAD letting us know that Captain Caveman's homophobia is setting back gay rights. This is some straight-up silly shit. Cartoons should never make the news for being involved in any kind of major cultural fuckery. The people of 2011 would assume we're all suffering a worldwide gas leak.
Anthony Bourdain Pledged To Boycott The President-Elect's New D.C. Restaurant
The Story: Celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain is not impressed that other chefs have agreed to work in Donald Trump's hotel. How unimpressed? He called one of them a loaf of shit and basically likened working there to working for Nazis.
2011's Reaction: Why is a foulmouthed chef likening the president to a Nazi? Oh my god, can you imagine back when no one made Nazi comparisons to Trump, and how hard it would be to try to explain how we got to this point to people back then? "Well, see, the guy from The Apprentice called every Mexican a rapist and decided we'd wall them all off back in Mexico, then he vowed to deport all the Muslims in America, then he hired a guy who runs a white supremacist website to be in his cabinet ... oh, and he's pretty sure Obama is from Kenya." All of that is actually true, not even embellished. Suck on that, 2011.
Governor Chris Christie Went On A Tweeting Rampage After His "Revenge Bill" Failed
The Story: The governor of New Jersey was implicated in a ridiculous scheme to cause a traffic jam in order to get revenge on a mayor who didn't endorse him in a reelection campaign. After trying to push through a failed bill to punish newspapers that ran that story, the governor whined like a baby on Twitter.
2011's Reaction: This sounds like the plot of a really shitty political drama. Like if someone wanted to do a knockoff of The West Wing, but it had to air on The CW or something like that, and every episode revolved around a completely ludicrous plot that would obviously never happen in real life, because no one really elects politicians this shallow or stupid, right? Yeesh.
Donald Trump Reportedly Rejected John Bolton For Secretary Of State Over His Mustache
The Story: This is exactly what it sounds like. Donald Trump apparently thinks this old fart's soup sifter is so out of order that he must be an unreliable old coot who can't be trusted with responsibility.
2011's Reaction: You lose political jobs in 2016 due to mustachery? Is that even legal? Is that a wild new form of really idiotic discrimination? You can't refuse to hire people based on sex or religion or race, are we rejecting them based on facial hair or something like a penchant for sweatpants now? It's like we have to invent new things to hate when we come to realize the old things to hate aren't fair or reasonable anymore. "I'd never discriminate against a person just because they're Swedish. But if that fucker has a goatee, I will punch his sternum."
Donald Trump Says He Doesn't Need Presidential Intelligence Briefings Because He's "Smart"
The Story: So you know how we have the CIA, the FBI, Homeland Security, and all those other people who are supposed to keep us safe from terrorism, meteors, war, famine, the plague, and dinosaurs? Donald Trump doesn't meet with those guys because he knows enough already.
2011's Reaction: "Stop it, you're scaring me."
Cards Against Humanity Raised Over $80,000 To Dig A Hole For No Reason
The Story: The makers of the fill-in-the-blank-with-something-dirty game Cards Against Humanity celebrated Black Friday by getting people to donate money to them so they could use an excavator to dig a hole for literally no reason. The hole has no purpose. You get nothing for contributing. It's a kind of nihilistic anti-consumerism jab at the pseudo-holiday.
2011's Reaction: "Hey it's that hilarious party game! I love that game! Wait, they spent $80,000 on a hole? Why?" (Note, this is the same reaction from 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016).
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte Threatens To Burn Down The UN, Brags About Killing People As Mayor
The Story: The Philippines has proved there are still some places on Earth more insane than America. They basically elected a serial killer Yosemite Sam as president, a guy who literally advocates murder and has apparently done so himself. And he wants to burn the UN.
2011's Reaction: The fuck is this noise? How did a guy who brags about murdering people ever get in charge of anything? That's a good question, 2011. Philippines, do you have an answer? No, you don't. This is Batshit Crazy, Version 6.0. No one can explain this lunacy. It'd be less shocking to find out your president butt chugs horse piss to gain equine powers. It'd be less shocking to learn that your president has been secretly saving his spooge for years in a freezer in the hopes of one day having it carved into a giant frozen sperm sculpture of himself.
Microsoft's Chat Robot Was Shut Down For Using Slurs And Denying The Holocaust
The Story: The internet, we'll one day discover, is the literal source of all bad things in the Universe. Its effect just radiated backwards through time to account for what happened before it existed. Anyway, Microsoft tried its hand at making a friendly program that could interact with people on Twitter. Within a single 24-hour period, the program, which was designed to be sort of like a teen girl, went from cupcakes and hip slang to denying the Holocaust in a flurry of racial slurs and pointing out how much swag Hitler had.
2011's Reaction: "Why did Microsoft make a Hitler-bot, again?"
Morgan Freeman Is A GPS Navigation Voice
The Story: Morgan Freeman's voice is a warm blanket we all want to wrap ourselves in. Since that isn't feasible, we can at least follow it down the highway to the nearest Denny's when we're out of state, because he's a GPS voice choice on the Waze app.
2011's Reaction: "What's Waze? Will Morgan Freeman tell me how to get to a titty bar?"
"Clown Lives Matter" Walk Cancelled Over Multiple Threats
The Story: For an unfortunate period of time this year, the Western world was oddly convinced a cadre of killer clowns were roaming across Europe and North America hellbent on murdering children, despite the fact that no one was ever murdered by a clown, ever. In response to this, actual non-killer clowns tried to organize a sort of protest march in an effort to save their image. Although it's unclear how many participants were registered practitioners of clownery, as opposed to edgy pranksters who thought it'd be a super funny and clever reference to Black Lives Matters. This peaceful event was immediately inundated with death threats until it was cancelled.
2011's Reaction: In fairness, 2011 was no doubt well aware that clowns are unlikable; they always have been. But there would likely be some surprise that the goofy, trendy "fear" of clowns had taken off so substantially that police were shutting down schools and kids were being kept home thanks to a fake as shit fear that no one really has, because no one is afraid of clowns. They just say they are, in the same way people without gluten sensitivities eat gluten-free products. It's trendy and they're shallow.
Brexit Is Making Champagne More Expensive For Brits
The Story: The British people voted to leave the European Union (the "British Exit," or "Brexit"), even though an abundance of evidence indicates that most Brits didn't understand why they voted that way. The result was that the British pound was destroyed, and now everything is more expensive thanks to the Euro being strong. Everything including sweet champagne -- which, in a twist of bitter irony, pairs well with 2016 tears.
2011's Reaction: "Who the fuck is Brexit, and how did he corner the champagne market?"
For more bullshit headlines that actually aren't check out 4 Real News Stories Ripped Straight from 'The X-Files' and 6 True Stories That Prove Local News Is Creepy As Hell.
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