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Individual Brands are the Key Story in Media

The whole “streaming wars” story is constantly debated. Netflix is my biggest holding and up to about three months ago, I thought it was going to take over the world! I even think there was a Barry Diller quote from that Allen & Co. conference where he said Netflix had already won.

But then BAM! Overnight everything changes, and I sorely wish I’d sold my $NFLX at 350.

Now suddenly everyone is producing good content and even the Death Star has seen the light and has a very good product in ATT TV. When I use ATT TV on my iPad it feels just like the Netflix experience (I don’t have to constantly re-login with my cable credentials for instance) and the interface looks and feels exactly like Netflix except with the different channels being like the different movies.

Then I see something like this on Twitter:

Look I think Disney and Netflix are going to have great brands and businesses for years to come. Who else could write the check for “The Irishman” and or the rights to College and Professional broadcasts.

But aren’t individual brands as in the case of Bill Simmons above in sports “broadcasting” the biggest, most exciting thing happening in media? Someone on the other side of the media spectrum is Bob Lefsetz in music. People like this are the top, but right behind them are hundreds of others, and behind that are thousands and so on.

So, from an investment perspective how does one capitalize on this trend. Well, for one, Bill’s twitter post prompted this blogpost. So Social Media obviously. I have Twitter and Facebook. But should definitely consider Snapchat and if only TikTok weren’t a Chinese company! Even Cramer said a while back when SNAP was re-awakening from the dead that there were “just not enough of them” meaning to me that the different social media channels, Twitter, FB, Insta, Snap, Youtube, Tiktok are simply what cable channels were in 1980.

Also if this is about the personal brand then it’s hard to go wrong with the web hosting companies like Godaddy, Wix, Weebly, Squarespace. The growth of money flows into these entities over the coming years should be enormous. Etsy as well.

Creativity

Creativity brings the true self to the surface. It evokes the true self. I think that might be the symbology of the Al-addin’s magical genie. Not only is he stuck in a bottle for some thousand years, but then the bottle is in a deep underground cave. I need to go back and read it again, but it would be interesting to see what in Aladdin’s character evoked the adventure itself, and what about his character itself we could learn from to bring at least metaphorically speaking that same kind of magic into our own lives.
I remember Aladdin being pretty obstreperous but not in a greedy entitled kind of way. He had enough innocence and curiosity in him to let the adventure happen, to let it unfold. One can have too much cunning (and maybe that’s simply called cynicism) where you just don’t trust anyone enough, especially a stranger, to ever let any adventure happen. On the other hand, you can be such a fool that anything you attract out of the ordinary is at best going to be simply more foolishness. “The adventure you get is the one of that you are ready for,” Joseph Campbell. And that readiness has to do with your psychological character, a character made it seems of this perfect balance of “striving for” and “acceptance with.” Every hero seems to have that little magical balance in their character.

The Message of Myth

The message of myth is this:
You as you know yourself are not the final term of your own being. 

The great way has no gate.
There are a thousand pathways to it.
He who crosses the threshold
walks the universe alone. 

Wu Wei

Art frees the spirit, but imprisons the psyche. Philosophy frees the psyche, but imprisons the spirit. 

What you want seems to come from a complete acceptance of what you don’t want. The story of “Gawain and Dame Ragnell” seems to exemplify that point to the utter bone. Gawain goes further than anyone would and then even a step further with no expectation and then it’s that utter, utter, utter acceptance, which I don’t how any human being can evoke in himself at will, that completely unlocks the door of bliss.

The Mythology of the West

America is now the Wasteland that T.S. Elliott wrote so famously about in 1925. At that point he was talking about Europe (He had no sense that America even had a chance). Elliot thought, and had good reason, with folk like Picasso, Yeats, and Pound, that the INDIVIDUAL….

would reassert himself as the hero. The key contribution of the West, which is written in the DNA of the pagan religions of Europe, is that the individual (a metaphor for creativity) and not the group is the hero.

In the East the individual is less than nothing. In the Levant, the same. The Group is the hero. The “People” as they say in the Leviticus. In Pre-Christian Europe a far different animal emerges. It’s the cult of the individual. The cult of the Hero.

But I suspect even in America the soul is currently being and will have been taken out of the individual and in its place due to inability to resist the six temptations (Buddha: Pleasure, Pain, Duty…Christ: Wealth, Power, and Fame)….

And some rough beast a gaze as blank and pitiless as the sun is slouching toward Bethlehem to be born. And probably in the wake of the industrial age already is. We’re underwater and don’t even know it. We can’t breath and don’t even know it. Some part of us knows something’s wrong…

But we are vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle.

The Secret Voice

The screen is up and
Borough Boy is
being euthanized
exactly as I write this
5:18pm on Labor Day, 6:18 where
it's happening in Saratoga, New York.
The last race of the last day
of the iconic meet.
No one knows
what is and what
is not.
History is still
and could break both ways
in superposition.
People don't know if they
are themselves or someone else.
They believe its up to the mystery
of another forgotten consciousness
who has control for some unknown reason
because its unfathomable that
someone else has control.

The Answer

The answer is 
underground
where what sets
the soul on fire
is the treasure bound.
Maybe that also means
Prometheus found?
Without judgment there
gravity holds without effort.
A stone’s throw takes
some sweat
but not the descent.
We are it’s descendants.
We fall exactly
the same way.
Except there's a block
holding us
from the answer:
a willing surrender
to go down.