Brittney, Bots, and Bankman-Fried
[Editor’s note: Watch Not My Party every week on Snapchat.]
Tim Miller: We’re in the cold December political doldrums, so I wanted to spice things up with a string of hot takes.
Sterling Archer (from Archer): Hot, hot, hot!
Lisa and Bart Simpson (from The Simpsons): Hot, hot, hot!
Randy Marsh (from South Park): Hot, hot, hot!
Gumball (from The Amazing World of Gumball): Hot, hot, hot.
Inigo Montoya (Mandy Patinkin in The Princess Bride): That’s enough!
Miller: This is “Not My Party,” brought to you by The Bulwark. Let’s go on a Take Quake with the Wheel of Fire. And we start with Brittney Griner. If you’re judging our trade of a basketball player versus a merchant of death without context, there’s no doubt that it’s a Russell Wilson-level bad deal.
Dave Portnoy: This is the worst trade in the history of all time. Biden got absolutely fleeced!
Miller: But here’s the thing: We’re America, we care about human rights. We are the worried mom who wants people to get home safe. Putin is the tiny-dicked deadbeat dad who doesn’t care about anybody but himself.
Artie Goodman (Peter Riegert on Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt): He’s a terrible person.
Miller: So we aren’t negotiating on a level playing field. That is the burden and blessing of being a great country dealing with his shitty one.
Emilio Molina Vargas (Carlos Montalban in Bananas): That’s the price we pay.
Miller: So yeah, I wish we could’ve got the other prisoners out too, but over the long haul, we’re winning, he’s losing. The freeing of Bout isn’t changing that trajectory and I’m just happy Brittney’s home safe.
Man 1 (off camera): You’re flying back home to the US.
Man 2 (off camera): What’s your mood?
Brittney Griner: Happy.
Miller: Let’s heat it up again. Ah, crypto! So SBF got arrested in the Bahamas. One thing is clear, this dude is a scam artist.
Stewie Griffin (from Family Guy): Whaaaat?
Miller: Company is a Ponzi scheme. He wasn’t even following the most basic corporate-governance policies.
The Operative (Chiwetel Ejiofor in Serenity): Madness.
Miller: But while SBF might be a scammy category to himself, my question: Isn’t all of crypto kind of a scam? Don’t these stupid coins need to eventually have some real-world value? Or else a lot of ’em are just gonna turn into the baseball cards wasting away in my parents’ basement?
Ron (Tobin Bell on Seinfeld): I’ll give you five bucks.
Miller: I get the value of blockchain technology. I get why drug dealers or people living in countries with unstable currency use Bitcoin. But in America, we have a Federal Reserve and can invest in products that actually do useful sh**. In 2030, do you think people are really gonna be paying you for your Dogecoin? This is not financial advice but I don’t think so.
Trent Titweiler (from Slippin’ Jimmy): Crypto is the future of money!
Miller: We spin again and land on . . . AI. So I’m pretty concerned that AI is already writing better term papers than half your classmates. It’s a sign that we’re getting close to a place where it will be hard to tell whether content online has been written by a human or a computer, whether it’s real or inauthentic.
Marge Simpson (from The Simpsons): I don’t know what to believe anymore.
Miller: And when we get there, it will make the disinformation we saw from Russian bots in 2016 look pretty tame by comparison.
Mickey (from Bob’s Burgers): Adorable.
Miller: To deal with this, we’re gonna need both a government regulatory structure and clear private-sector content-moderation policies. But here in our current timeline, we can’t even agree on how to deal with Nazi speech on Twitter.
Philip J. Fry (from Futurama): I’m afraid we’re boned!
Miller: As such, my confidence in our ability to regulate the excesses and ethics of the coming AI disinformation campaigns is really low.
Drew Dunbar (Thomas Middleditch on B Positive): So the bar is low.
Miller: That said, have you tried Lensa? Damn, do I look handsome. If this is gonna be my Metaverse body, well, goodbye Joe Biden and hello robot overlords.
Glenn Quagmire (from Family Guy): Maybe it won’t be that bad.
Borg collective (from some iteration of Star Trek): Resistance is futile.
Miller: And I’m hungry for one last take. Boom! Bake me a cake, mother***ers! There was a Supreme Court hearing last week about a web designer who declined to make a gay-wedding website because of her Christian religious beliefs. As a married gay with a nice family, I find this sad and slightly upsetting.
Big Gay Al (from South Park): I thought we were past this!
Miller: But on the other hand, can’t win ’em all. For me, gay rights meant my rights, not forcing some weirdo to make me a website or bake me a damn cake. There are lots of web designers and lots of cake bakers out there; can’t we show the ones who aren’t down with Heartstopper a little grace? Or if not, just give them a one-star review on Yelp and move on with our lives?
Charlotte Grayson (Christa B. Allen on Revenge): Ugh, fine!
Miller: We’ll see you next week for more “Not My Party.”