So I was angry. Watching TV news over dinner — turning my attention from scandals in the UK to those here and frankly welcoming the distraction from the tragedies in Norway — I listened to the latest from Washington about negotiations over the debt ceiling. It pissed me off. I’d had enough. After dinner, I tweeted: “Hey, Washington assholes, it’s our country, our economy, our money. Stop fucking with it.” It was the pinot talking (sounding more like a zinfandel).

That’s all I was going to say. I had no grand design on a revolution. I just wanted to get that off my chest. That’s what Twitter is for: offloading chests. Some people responded and retweeted, which pushed me to keep going, suggesting a chant: “FUCK YOU WASHINGTON.” Then the mellifluously monikered tweeter @boogerpussy suggested: “[email protected] Hashtag it: #FUCKYOUWASHINGTON.” Damn, I was ashamed I hadn’t done that. So I did.

And then it exploded as I never could have predicted. I egged it on for awhile, suggesting that our goal should be to make #fuckyouwashington a trending topic, though as some tweeters quickly pointed out, Twitter censors moderates topics. Soon enough, though, Trendistic showed us gaining in Twitter share and Trendsmap showed us trending in cities and then in the nation.

Screen shot 2011-07-24 at 7.33.24 AM

Jeff Howe tweeted: “Holy shit, @JeffJarvis has gone all Howard Beale on us. I love it. And I feel it. Give us our future back, fuckers. #FUCKYOUWASHINGTON.” He likes crowded things. He’s @crowdsourcing. He became my wingman, analyzing the phenom as it grew: “Why this is smart. Web=nuance. Terrible in politics. Twitter=loud and simple. Like a bumper sticker. #FuckYouWashington.” He vowed: “If this trends all weekend, you think it won’t make news? It will. And a statement. #FuckYouWashington.”

And then I got bumped off Twitter for tweeting too much. Who do the think they are, my phone company? Now I could only watch from afar. But that was appropriate, for I no longer owned this trend. As Howe tweeted in the night: “Still gaining velocity. Almost no tweets containing @crowdsourcing or @jeffjarvis anymore. It’s past the tipping point. #FuckYouWashington.”

Right. Some folks are coming into Twitter today trying to tell me how to manage this, how I should change the hashtag so there’s no cussin’ or to target their favorite bad man, or how I should organize marches instead. Whatever. #fuckyouwashington not mine anymore. That is the magic moment for a platform, when its users take it over and make it theirs, doing with it what the creator never imagined.

Now as I read the tweets — numbering in the tens of thousands by the next morning — I am astonished how people are using this Bealesque moment to open their windows and tell the world their reason for shouting #fuckyouwashington. It’s amazing reading. As @ericverlo declared, “The #fuckyouwashington party platform is literally writing itself.” True, they didn’t all agree with each other, but in their shouts, behind their anger, they betrayed their hopes and wishes for America.

@partygnome said: “#fuckyouwashington for valuing corporations more than people.”

@spsenski, on a major role, cried: “#fuckyouwashington for never challenging us to become more noble, but prodding us to become selfish and hateful…. #fuckyouwashington for not allowing me to marry the one I love…. #fuckyouwashington for driving me to tweet blue.”

@jellencollins: “#fuckyouwashington for making ‘debt’ a four letter word and ‘fuck’ an appropriate response.”

@tamadou: “#fuckyouwashington for giving yourselves special benefits and telling the American people they have to suck it up or they’re selfish.”

@psychnurseinwi: “#fuckyouwashington for having the compromising skills of a 3 year old.”

I was amazed and inspired. I was also trepidatious. I didn’t know what I’d started and didn’t want it to turn ugly. After all, we had just witnessed the ungodly horror of anger — and psychosis — unleashed in Norway. I’ve come to believe that our enemy today isn’t terrorism but fascism of any flavor, hiding behind anger as supposed cause.

But at moments such as this, I always need to remind myself of my essential faith in my fellow man — that is why I believe in democracy, free markets, education, journalism. It’s the extremists who fuck up the world and it is our mistake to manage our society and our lives to their worst, to the extreme. That, tragically, is how our political system and government are being managed today: to please the extremes. Or rather, that is why they are not managed today. And that is why I’m shouting, to remind Washington that its *job* is to *manage* the *business* of government.

The tweets that keep streaming in — hundreds an hour still — restore my faith not in government but in society, in us. Oh, yes, there are idiots, extremists, and angry conspiracy theorists and just plain jerks among them. But here, that noise was being drowned out by the voices of disappointed Americans — disappointed because they do indeed give a shit.

Their messages, their reasons for shouting #fuckyouwashington and holding our alleged leaders to higher expectations, sparks a glimmer of hope that perhaps we can recapture our public sphere. No, no, Twitter won’t do that here any more than it did it in Egypt and Libya. Shouting #fuckyouwashington is hardly a revolution. Believe me, I’m not overblowing the significance of this weekend’s entertainment. All I’m saying is that when I get to hear the true voice of the people — not the voice of government, not the voice of media, not a voice distilled to a number following a stupid question in a poll — I see cause for hope.

I didn’t intend this to be anything more than spouting off in 140 profane characters. It turns out that the people of Twitter taught me a lesson that I thought I was teaching myself in Public Parts, about the potential of a public armed with a Gutenberg press in every pocket, with its tools of publicness.

* * *

For an excellent summary of the saga as it unfolded on Twitter, see Maryann Batlle’s excellent compilation in Storify, as well as Gavin Sheridan’s Storyful. CBS News Online’s What’s Trending was the first in media to listen to what was happening here. David Weigel used this as a jumping off point for his own critique of Washington and the debt “crisis” at Slate. Says Michael Duff on his blog:

Everybody knows you guys are running the clock out, waiting for the next election. But you can’t have it both ways. You can’t go on TV to scare the shit out of us every day and then expect us to wait patiently for 2012.

You can’t use words like “urgent” and “crisis” and then waste our time with Kabuki theater.

Either the situation is urgent and needs to be solved now, or it’s all just an act that can wait for 2012. This isn’t 1954, gentlemen. The voters are on to you now. We know you’re playing a game and we know you’re using us as chess pieces.

That’s why #fuckyouwashington is trending on Twitter. We’re tired of being pawns.

Every politician in Washington needs to pay attention to this outrage, and remember who they’re working for.

And then there’s this reaction from no less than Anonymous: “@jeffJarvis you’ve started a shit storm. Nice going.”

: MORE: Handelsblatt writes about the Twitter movement.

And a Washington Post blog chimes in.

Here’s TechPresident’s chimes in. “>report.

Discussions occurring with this post at CommentIsFree on the Guardian and HuffingtonPost.

Süddeutsche Zeitung on #fuckdichwashington.

: The next day: ABCNews.com covers the tag — and finds a safe way to illustrate the story.

Here’s The Wrap wrapping it up.

And the story has been covered in France, where #fuckyouwashington sounds, well, elegant and sexy:

Here’s the CBS Early Show report on the tag:More CBS: It’s online show What’s Trending also reported on the event. Stupidly, they disable embedding of videos. That won’t help them trend, will it? But here’s an old-fashioned link.

Here’s NBC’s wimp-out presentation of #fuckyouwashington.

KABC local TV report here.

: A week later: The hashtag passes 100k tweets and Howie Kurtz and I talk about it on Reliable Sources:

  • Having lived in Washington for several years, I’m still pretty miffed that people keep conflating the US government with the city that hosts it. There are a lot of honest, hardworking, liberal Washingtonians (90% of the population registered DEM as of last count) who are as appalled as you at obstructionist antics — more so, in fact, with Washington DC continuing to be denied voting representation in Congress.

    Have a thought for disenfranchised Washingtonians before you say “screw you” to them by name, for the actions of a legislature consisting almost entirely of representatives from out of the city.

    • Seth Murphy

      I never for once thought he was talking about Washington the state or the District. Context is a wonderful thing, and it was quite obvious what it meant. I love both the state and the district, didn’t even think it was possible Jeff would be hating on such a general group. A specific group though (Washington DC politicians, or Congress) that is another matter as far as the debt situation goes. You should have a rep though, not that I think it would change this issue any.

      • pdh

        Well, DUH!!! Amazing someone would even feel the need to post this. Some citizen from Washington who thought to himself: “Gee, they’re insulting ME!”

    • “Washington” is not meant to cast aspersions on the city itself or indeed on the many dedicated government workers or fewer members of congress that are still trying to work for all the people rather than the wealthy few. The “Washington” in the F**kYouWashington hashtag refers to the web of lobbyists, self-serving political contributors, doctrinaire reactionaries, and those who drink their brew and vote their way. It’s a network too broad to be referred to with any narrower term.

      • John Abbott

        Extremely well said!! I wish the original hash had been a bit less profane. But after considering all of the alternatives it is the forcefulness of the F word here that mattered. I believe your surmise is dead center and I appreciate it.

  • Jason Safoutin

    You have started what I hope is the revolution of THE PEOPLE that this country needs. I am glad this has gotten to the point where America is finally listening, and finally sounding like they aren’t going to take it anymore. We needed a voice to start this, and it happened to be yours. There is nothing wrong with that. In fact everything about it is right. People listened to you and now I hope they listen to each other. This is our time now and it is time that we said enough is enough. We need to take back our country and NOW is the time. Lets do this.

    • Susan Warren

      Amen….listening only gets you so far………action is what is needed……we are irate….we are frustrated…we have had enough….

  • The best way to stick it to Washington is to deny them what they most crave: power and money. Happy to see both sides agree that we need a far more limited government.

    • Wind2Energy

      How sadly disingenuous of you. No one I know “agrees” we need a far more limited Goverment. What we need is a Government that works to benefit the taxpayers, not Wall Street, Banks and War Profiteers. #fuckyoiWashington.

      • We agree more than you realize Wind2Energy. Ever notice that the bigger Washington is, the more powerful Wall Street, Banks and War Profiteers get? When we empower DC to pick winners and losers, the industries that can afford lobbyists will always be the ones to profit most. The only way I see to change it is to let taxpayers keep more of their money so they can directly fund what’s best for them and their communities.

      • ChestersFriend

        Agreed… all falls under the banner ” The selling of America” .. the politicians are selling it .. it’s ours supposedly but the corporations keep getting more and hte people less. Corps are now like sports teams .. “give me what I want Governor or I’ll take my ompany and jobs ” The only thing that matters to them is profit .. they will toss thier own mothers to the curb iif it increases their profit … and the politicians want power (which they thing they have but if they cross a corp…..) .. and money .. so they ofcourse support whoever pays them .. and we all know what that makes them. Maybe we start a movement where we vote AGAINST ever incumbant .. and keep doing it …

    • Caitlin

      No, I’ve noticed the opposite – that the more Washington embraces laissez faire economics and fails to set reasonable ground rules through effective regulation, then the more powerful Wall St etc becomes. The financial crisis was caused by govt abrogating responsibility not by “big govt”.

      Also, the reason you can’t have tax cuts is because you have to pay for George W Bush’s out-of-control spending

      • krh

        @caitlin. Don’t forget the billions tacked on by President Obama and crew. It isn’r Democrats or Revpublicns. It isn’t Bush or Obama. It is all of them wanting their own way. When was the last time any of your senators or representatives actually asked you what you think.

      • Caitlin

        @krh Not really. This graph of Bush and Obama spending should put it in perspective for you. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/obamas-and-bushs-effect-on-the-deficit-in-one-graph/2011/07/25/gIQAELOrYI_blog.html?fb_ref=NetworkNews&fb_source=home_multiline

        Note that the Republicans in Congress voted for the Bush spending – they are not resisting the borrowing now for the good of the country but purely to try to damage the president. I doubt they would be making this an issue if McCain were president now.

        I don’t think all Democrats are great and all Republicans evil by any means but it seems that the modern Republican party has damaging the other side as its first priority, ahead of governing the country. The Democrats want to damage the other side but running the country comes first. That’s my honest assessment.

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  • Tracey

    I think everyone understands “Washington” as “US politicians” or “US government” and not the city inhabitants. :)

    • Jo

      Which only makes it harder to get real representation in Congress for Washingtonians; everyone outside the Beltway thinks “Washington” is politicians. What part of “Washington” is David Koch from? Scott Miller?

      • Jo

        Oops, meant Scott Walker.

  • MPH

    One thing I find curious is how so many people with disparate points of view are attaching their views to the hashtag.

    Perhaps the gridlock is tied to the fact that there are deep-seated disagreements on where voters want to go (not just two opposing points of view, but dozens — as evidenced by a quick read through the #fuckyouwashington tweets). Politicians don’t want to start talking about those differences and so they hide behind rhetoric hoping the other side gets blamed. But the status quo isn’t going to last either…that debt isn’t going away on its own.

    • Javaun Moradi

      Bingo. Reading through the tweets and you’ll see liberals complaining that government is cutting social programs and hasn’t extended universal healthcare, juxtaposed against tea party conservatives complaining about runaway spending. Everyone is fulminating under the same hashtag, but beyond anger there is no agreement on how to fix things. The gridlock and intransigence in the Congress is a full reflection of the general disagreement in the population at large.

  • Brian Mather

    Yippee ki yay Jeff. And aint it sweet when the ‘media’ loses control of Our conversation.

  • Your presidential bid press conference got lost in the profanity: #Jeff4Prez?

    Seriously though, I watched this unfold last night (from the sidelines). It restored a little of my faith in America … and Twitter.

  • Jake formerly of the LP

    I think you’re getting noticed because a lot of us are fed up with the insular D.C. BS that’s driving this country into the ground. It’s no coincidence that the Paul Ryans and ALECs and Kochs are creatures of D.C., because in the real world, these people couldn’t ignore the huge unemployment and inequailty that’s killed our economy for the last 4 years.

    D.C. is nothing more than a giant cocktail party of big-moneyed interests that run counter to what us out in the rest of America are dealing with every day. As George Carlin put it, “It’s a big club, and you’re not in it.” Well, our country isn’t a country CLUB, it belongs to all of us. And it’s time we take it to the streets, and take it back from the oligarchs. Just like we’re doing here in Wisconsin.

    You’ve done a great public service. Keep it up.

  • Rop

    Okay, now what?

    And frankly, this false equivalency BS is what Jarvis is most notorious for. He’s no more different than the “he said, she said” crap spawned in journalism schools in the 50s.

    Oh, and those tea party asshats thank you.


  • TheThinker1958

    I can’t wait for CNN to talk about this hashtag live on TV :)

  • I think everyone understands “Washington” as “politicians in every country in the west” and the “multinational corporations” they work for ;-)

    People look to Cario now and think, why can’t we do democracy? Wouldn’t that be better than simply feeling guilty when our little ones inform us we have to take care of planet earth? “Yes, dear.” There are some lies even parents can spot. Can a 4 year old deal with the truth? “We are going to stick with oil and finance, sweetheart. Washington decided you can go fuck yourselves and I didn’t stick up for you.” I didn’t even tweet. Sorry, kiddo.

  • Can we talk on the phone? Check out our site and you’ll see what we’ve been working on. Also work with Kevin Zeese of October2011.

    We all need to organize. For real.

  • Ellen

    I think it’s Washington saying F*** you to all of us. I am enjoying reading the tweets with the #FUW.

    But you wrote “and frankly welcoming the distraction from the tragedies in Norway” – this is so wrong :*(.

    • Caitlin

      Yeah the throw-away line about Norway upset me too. Sounded like schadenfreude.

      • Not at all. It is so upsetting, I wanted to find some respite.

  • Hi jeff,
    Really Nice job!!!This one is for you from Paris (France) !


    Watching this movement growing from here is really interesting, I’ll follow this with a real enthusiasm. Long life to Your (Jeff, US twitters, US conscious citizens who are goin’ to get involved) hashtag!! ;D


  • I you really did want to take it from Twitter in the direction of the real world, the examples from the Middle East are there. You don’t need a huge organization or lots of funding to organize people. Move #FuckYouWashington to a platform like Facebook next (as a Page) so people have a “place” to organize, communicate and decide on steps.

    The spirit of it is entirely appropriate.

  • Sigi

    I would call promoting “free markets” (a.k.a. right-wing Libertarianism” a rather extremist position, which arguably already *has* fucked up the world.

    (Just mentioning this since you put it in a bag with education and democracy in support *against* extremism…)

    • Professor N

      I agree. I understand the need to play centrist and be reasonable, but honestly, the whole “I believe in free markets!” dogma needs an adjustment. Does it work? Well, if you’re successful, you’ll say it does. If you’re not, you won’t. So, it doesn’t work for everyone. It would be NICE if it worked, but an entirely free-market system is just as bad as its opposite. It’s best not to be delusional or close-minded…

  • pd

    As we celebrate the 100th anniversary of Marshall McLuhan’s birth, I think one of the things #FuckYouWashington highlights is: “medium is the message”.

    What McLuhan was pointing to was: the form of a medium embeds itself in the message, creating a symbiotic relationship by which the medium influences how the message is perceived.

    good work, Jeff.

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  • John Abbott

    #jeff Jarvis et al, We have a nice crowd gathering to scream their frustrations with the Government of the Corporation, by the Corporation and for the Corporation. All I can see is Obama trying to figure out how to pull the moat bridges up as he utters – LET THEM EAT CAKE!

    OK we are mad as hell and we aren’t going to take anymore. I’m a cord cutter and threw out my TV long ago. What are we going to do about it? Will there be anything left by the time 2012 rolls around?

    When asked if I’m a Liberal or Conservative I generally respond with “I’m an antique American!” I want my country back! Lets DO something about it.

  • Tara

    Confession time: I don’t know what a Twitter hash tag is, but i ‘get’ the general idea here. Thing is…it is good for a get it off your chest moment, but it stops there. Since there are as many reasons for hash tagging this moniker as there are people who post, does the tag really mean anything other than we are discouraged by the general state of national affairs? I’m tired of non-substantive conversations and people spouting off. Say something useful, please.

  • Jeff,

    As the editor in chief at We Love DC, I think you need to be more clear about the separations between the representatives sent by the states, and those of us who make our homes in Washington.

    Those of us who live here who work all throughout the city not for the Congress, and not for the government have made our lives in a city that we love in spite of all the people who are here just for those things. DC may have a large government center, but it’s not JUST a government center.

    Speaking for all those that you just insulted, fuck you, sir. Fuck you very, very much.

    Tom Bridge
    Ward 5, District of Columbia
    Editor in Chief
    We Love DC

    • Allison

      Oh lord, this pretentious, uptight attitude is exactly why people can’t stand Washington and the people who live and work there. It is so clear that this hashtag is intended for a specific subset of Washingtonians. What, was it supposed to be #fuckyouCongressPresidentObama&KStreetLobbyists? Come on! And I’m saying this as someone who lives 1 mile outside of DC and works in the District.

      • Fuck You Government, maybe?

      • Allison: you live outside of DC which means you’ve got a vote in Congress, making you far more responsible for this mess than the people who live *in* DC and are denied Congressional representation. You might up uptight too if you were taxed without representation.

    • Seriously Tom – We are not morons. Your fuck you is totally unwarranted and makes you look kinda dumb. I am sure your a fine fella….but it’s not all about you.

      • This is hardly about me, Liz. This is about the city getting the bad rap for all of those sent here by their localities.

        It’s not the city’s fault.

        Maybe Jeff meant to blame the Capitol, but what he blamed was the Capital.

        There’s a big difference between the two.

    • LOVE!

      • Allison

        Nobody is forced to live in DC. If you are so bothered about your taxation without representation that you have to become uptight about a Twitter hashtag, perhaps you should consider moving out of the district. By the way, those of you who think the hashtag was directed at the entire city, not just those in the government, are in an extremely small minority.

        I sure hope We Love DC holds itself to its Editor’s standards and is 100% literal with all of its headlines and articles. Somehow I’m doubting that though.

      • Allison

        Oh, and furthermore, if you want to be really accurate, you should be raising a fuss on behalf of all the residents of Washington State and all cities/towns/people named Washington. They are the true victims of that hashtag right? If it had been meant to malign the entire District of Columbia it would have read #fuckyouWashingtonDC or #fuckyouDistrictofColumbia right?

      • Allison – I don’t quite get why I can’t reply to you directly, so I’ll do so here:

        -I could probably afford to move out of DC, but you do know that there are thousands of DC residents under the poverty line who can’t move, right? You want to crucify me for choosing to live in this city, fine: why do you choose to crucify those who don’t have the option to move? Why aren’t you saying “ALL AMERICANS SHOULD BE ENTITLED TO CONGRESSIONAL REPRESENTATION!”

        Do you live in Virginia?

    • Jamie

      Wow, as if anyone was confused! You must get tired sending all those emails to every news program in America!

    • gar

      God, get over yourself, everyone in the world knows we are talking about political Washington not you, geeez what a ego

  • Oh, jeesh, lighten up, guy and get a sense of humor and irony. You know what we mean.

    And your city is too damned hot. Do something about that.

    • Jonathan Gitlin

      Too bad about the weather, thanks to the entire nation’s utter ambivalence towards doing anything about climate change pretty much the entire nation is going to end up with weather like ours.

      And please note, it is (almost) the entire nation’s fault, you can’t just blame climate change intransigence on the elected cockstains on the Hill.

  • Then say what you mean, Jeff.

    You hate Congress and the lobbies? Great, CALL IT THAT. Don’t insult our beautiful city because you hate about 5,000 people out of our 600,000.

    Maybe you can do something about NYC smelling like garbage?

    • Get a life and a sense of humor. jeesh.

      • Can’t take a little criticism, Jeff?

        All I’m asking you, as a journalist, to do is say what you mean.

    • Ken

      Seriously? Tom you’re obviously an idiot, and I hope Jeff gets rid of your comments. Anyone reading this blog knows what he’s talking about. Not your precious little community, but the crap that goes on there. So citizen to journalist: I don’t want to hear your bull shit. You know what it mean, shut up.

      • Ken: are you seriously saying Jeff Jarvis should start censoring people? That seems to run counter to what Jarvis is all about. I think Jarvis couldn’t put a little more thought into this hashtag, but he’s willing to take the heat he generates like a man.

      • Ken

        In retrospect, no, and I’m glad he doesn’t censor. I was a little pissed with Tom and just didn’t even want to see it anymore, so I said what I said. Sorry for the outburst, and confusion.

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  • Cliff Barney

    ” I’ve come to believe that our enemy today isn’t terrorism but fascism of any flavor, hiding behind anger as supposed cause.”

    jeff – i almost never agree with what you say about journalism, but this statement is the most succinct summary of today’s politics i have seen. thank you!

    • Professor N

      Ironically, one side is always declaring the other “fascist” while it’s clear they have no idea what that word actually means.

  • Ken

    Wow people…It’s a blog post about the government not DC as a community, and I’m not about to get into a yelling match about it….

    Great post Jeff. I hope #fuckyouwashington continues and at least gets more people’s attention. It helps give normal people like me a voice along with a sea of millions.

  • Bob Jones
  • publius

    I have held off until now getting a Twitter account, but this will be my first tweet.

  • Stan Hogan

    Twitter enthusiasm can wane fast. Except when it comes to Justin Bieber. He’s back on top.

  • RE

    Maybe we should start a #fuckyouNYC hash tag that everyone will automatically understand refers exclusively to Wall Street?

  • The Declaration of Independence notes that, when governments no longer serve people, they are subject to being replaced by forms of government that serve poeple better. It seems that we are close to reaching that point. At dinner the other night, I listened to the (liberal-learning) folks bash Republicans, justifiably, for what the Republicans were doing. Interestingly, the Democrats are doing the same things. Also interstingly, all political folks are working on pure knee-jerk opposition to the others. A pox on all their houses. One party steals with their right hands, and the other steals with their left hands. BOTH parties steal from me, and it hardly matters which hands they use — a disproportionately high number of BOTH parties are millionaires, those serving in congress and govenment. 2% of our population controls 90% of the wealth, and the rest of us struggle — and we’re wealthy compared to the rest of th 6 billion fellow-travelers on our planet. It’s truly time for a change. Let’s get on with it. In years past, I was denied a security clearance because a family member had participated in an armed attempt at overthrowing of the U.S. govenment. It turns out that he was the last Confederate General to surrender — and that he was using the Civil (uncivil, if you ask me) as an opportunity for ridding the Oklahmoa territory of European inflience. Our government is susceptible to change, but only by folks who understand how it works and what is it, and not according to the sappy “how a bill becomes a law” b.s. that we sell in schools. Onward and upward. See http://www.fireinthebellyeducators.com — it’s time to straighten things out for a change, and without the “help” of the mainstream media or the crippled thinkers that we are mostly all of us are. JC

  • Sardonic_sob

    Please explain why your hashtag was not #FuckYouVoters, which is semantically, logically, and morally equivalent. We voted for ’em, they do what we tell them to do to get our votes. As soon blame the sun for rising as a politician for pandering.

  • Big Jim Slade

    The Democrats have offered everything short of sex. Your tweet should’ve been #FuckYouHouseGOP. Do you need to be reminded that there have never been conditions (any, at all) put on raising the debt ceiling? It was a stupid GOP idea in the first place and should be trashed.

    • Sardonic_sob

      If it were true that there had never been any conditions, any, at all, put on raising the debt ceiling, then every vote, ever, at all, would have been unanimous. While I’d be willing to believe that some of them were, I’m pretty sure not ALL of them were. Therefore, somebody must’ve had conditions that must not have been met.

      As for whose fault it is, it’s everybody’s fault. Both parties have had uncontested control of the government since the debt ceiling was established. They didn’t get rid of it when they did because it’s a useful tool for politicking. (Literally, “being a lot of bloodsucking vermin.”) You don’t get to complain about the other guy using a gun you handed him. “How was I to know he might actually shoot somebody with it?” is not a defense we allow anybody over six years old to raise.

  • Big Jim Slade

    Sardonic_sob – you’re just as accurate as Jarvis is, spreading the blame equally. But the blame goes 100% to the Republicans. So, that should read, #FuckYouGOPVoters.

  • JC

    Jeff Jarvis – gets his dander up, starts a tweet storm, called eff you washington, which takes off. He’s telling the story, marvelling at how it took off

    But, notice – all this high moral outrage over ‘Washington’, without putting DIRECT RESPONSIBILITY on the fact that all we have to do is hold a voice vote, and raise the debt ceiling, as we’ve done for the last 50 years or more.

    And who isn’t doing that? “Washington”. But it is the REPUBLICANS who didn’t do that.

    So where did his moral compass go?

    He is in high moral outrage – and then is amoral and/or lazy enough not to investigate why, and call to account those responsible??

  • JC

    So Jeff, are you lazy, or amoral?

    If you believe in your moral rant, ‘fuckyouwashington’, then you have a moral DUTY to tell the truth about what is really the problem ‘in Washington’.

    That you DON’T, means either you are faking your outrage, or, you are simply lazy – another form of immorality.

  • My twitter feed exploded with this hashtag and I hadn’t realized it’s origin till *finally* getting to this post. It’s amazing when you tap into some raw feeling like this how it proliferates.

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  • Hey, I just made a piece about you and #fuckyouwashington on France Culture… It’s quite short but it’s French national radio…

    Have a look : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O-RQP7mzT4o

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    • #fickdichberlin is trending in Germany right now on #1

      This whole thing has really got away from Jeff. Folks, see how people behave and how they tend to use social media networks. Those few who share and who are followed most have tremendous influence – and power as well.

      When I joined the spring 2011 Smarter Social Media course at Columbia University we where told to reconsider at least 3-5 minutes before sending out each tweet. A ‘tweetin Katyusha’ (German: Stalinorgel) espacially when driven by anger may undermine this advice.

      But this is another most interesting example of how people use the net to give their thoughts and fears a voice like previously in Columbia (FARC) and today in Northern African/Arabian Countires and less significant in Germany (Stuttgart 21).

  • Q

    Ah, yes, A Pox On Both Houses. Very good. You’ll get that job at the WaPo editorial page for sure! But seriously, Jeff, care to tell us what exactly, the Democrats have done in this fake debt crisis that really burns your butt? Promise no tax increases? Cut trillions in major programs? Give in to 99% of GOP demands? Help us out here, smart guy.

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  • whiteeagle2173

    I heard about this on the news and just had to join in.
    Very appropriate. Thank you

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  • Freddo

    At the end of the day, “fuckyouwashington” is pretty lame. “Hey look, someone said a swear word in a hashtag and it caught on”… big deal. Fuck you #fuckyouwashington.

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  • To say it with Michael McClure:
    FUCK! The word fuck is a mantra. Sanskrit: man is the first syllable of manana or thinking. Tra is from trana or liberation from the samsra or phenomenal world. Mantra calls thought-freedom forth! The barrier against it makes a mantra of it. It will call forth. Shout FUCK and break up your image. Say all the words that are denied to you and make all deep desired acts that are mortal and have perfect meaning to your meat.
    Further reading: http://bit.ly/r3P6Ft

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  • Miles Davis

    How, exactly, does “Fuck you, Washington” warrant such coverage? Has no one ever proclaimed this before? Shouted it at a television? Yelled it in a bar? Groused about it over the airwaves? Expressed it in print a million times over?

    Oh, that’s right: a rich, connected white person tweeted it, using the word “fuck” (it’s nice to see that the tired novelty of the potty-mouthed privileged can still shock in some circles). Now it matters.

    • Well, excuuuuuse me for tweeting.

      • Miles Davis

        Oh, look, kids: a Steve Martin reference from the ’70s, i.e., Jeff Jarvis’ Prime. (You could’ve dropped in a wink to John Belushi, but noooooooooo.)

  • Donator

    What do the responsible is simply state terrorism and all Americans would have immediately the right to hang these people immediately.

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  • Holger

    hi Americans,
    get real; it is time to make sure, who has to pay the bill. It´s not the poor, it should be the one who benefited most from the lobbywork.
    yes I know, they created your jobs…. BUT not for the reason to be nice. The only reason for them creating jobs is GREED. Dont get me wrong I am NOT a kommunist at all.
    But if the rich don´t start to share more, the poor will be in front of their houses. Thereafter in their houses. YOU WANT THIS TO HAPPEN?
    TIME TO SAVE ! Reduce the defence budget and everything will improve. Please don´t take more from the poor.
    All the best, may god help you

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  • Indeed about time that the real problem of the common man /woman is identified publicly, as i always said since years, corporations and governments are the dinosaurs of our times – and they need to much food (money) to sustain their own existence – hence they squeeze everything out of the ordinary people, and once that is not enough anymore they (hopefully) die away…. or people rise up and start to take control of their governments again, after all, the TAXPAYER pais their alaries and bills, and those that pay the bills should be those that say what’s gotta be done!

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  • Kaymac

    Im writing from germany, so please excuse me if my english is not all the best.
    SPIEGEL Online, wich is the online Magazin of one of the most popular and let´s say mostly serious newsmagazin, wrote about this Twitterstorm, wich has already inspires similar storms in Europe. In Germany the hashtag is #fickdichberlin, wich also is now a kind of twitterstorm, but as many things in germany, quite not so loud and emotional as in the US.
    We germans are a little slow when it comes to demonstrations of the will of the people.
    But we share the same self-centered politics, corporates and lobbyists, wich only cares for their personal agendas, money grubbing and not a bit for their responsibility which their jobs are should have.
    But luckily we have the federal constitiutional court, which is in the last time, a voice and institution of reason (bad thing to say, but our Mrs. Merkel will go in to the history books as the worst chancellor ever, next to Helmut Kohl, which was her political mentor)
    There is a difference, when it comes to the political partys, which to explain would cost a amount of time and will possibly no one here really interests.
    But, what most of the people don´t understand is why so many americans vote for the tea-party and the republicans, when they are not rich, not elitists or in any other way, part of the small part of people who really benefit from the actions of this party.
    I don´t think that the democrats are really altruistic or less manipulativ, politic is not a business which has moral automatically included, most the opposite.
    But, from the information we get over here, the republicans are straight responsible for tax-lowering for corporates and the rich, which therefor pay for the party a lot of money, to make sure that their priviliges are maintained.
    It was Ronald Reagean which seems to started this mess, the Bush Administrations were not any better and all of them raised the benefits for their own lobby, which was not the ordinary man.
    So, why are people still believe that the republicans do anything for the normal, not rich, not exclusive people?
    The clock is running and they don´t care, play with fire and give not a crap about any hard working person at all, which is not so privileged to be born to their circle.
    There is another article about Grover Norquist, THE Lobbyist in Washington, which seems personnaly responsible for the blockade in this matter.
    A man, which story of his agenda begins with a kind of daddy issue (his dad bought him and his sibblings a popsicle after church, then bites a bit of and says “this is tax”) serious, how can a political party listen to a person which seems to be unaware of what is really about to happen? Which denial reality? Get him a popsicle, maybe a shrink, but keep those people out of politics, they are dangerous because they don´t act out of reason or concern, they act out of a buzz of childhood issues, which are not really thougt-out. Nobody likes taxes, but they are the fundament of a community, of a state. The using is questionable, no doubt, but why should only normal people pay taxes and rich people, which have more and more this days are spared?
    And why vote for exact the party which represent a big lot of them?
    I don´t get it, sorry, i meant really no offense, we have the same bunch of egoistic money-grabbers here, they play the same games, tell the same lies, but at least they are a little bit subtle about it.
    We germans are slow, sadly to say, we are the hard working kind of people which needs a long time to change things, but we are now in a mood that we discover, we are the people, and the next votes are about to come, and i don´t think that Mrs Merkel stand any chance when this day comes.
    I really hope, like nearly the whole western world, that the US overcome this charade in Washington, the last financial crisis was more than enough, the same people which now tell funny storys about “no nothing bad will happen” tell them before. I really hope this time, they don´t win, because if they do, all loose.

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  • Marie

    FYW…nothing left to say.

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  • Holger

    so after all, the public and investors dont trust the debt compromise. markets tank and people are looking for save haevens.. are there some ? I doubt it. Gold, CHF, AUD all this will be a trap. especially the CHF. watch out,what the swiss will do to protect their market.
    time to realize, that peoply with bigger savings and especially waelthy people (need to be defined) need to contribute to reduce the states debt. Thereafter the politicians should go to hell and new – more honest and straight – people should come into power. And lobbyists must not be part of politics. Strict rules needed.

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  • Holger

    Barosso is a “Woodhead” (translation for the german word “Holzkopf”).
    How in this world he can basically say, that the existing bailout plan is to small !

  • Holger

    Barosso should have a twitter “howtofuckupeurope”

  • kenminuteman

    Big Corporations buy American Government !!!

    The way I see our deficit problem is, that It has not been looked at honestly. Why is it here? We have a lack of income from our tax base, caused buy shipping our jobs overseas “to foreign countries”, and loosing the income from our labor force, and manufacturing facilitys, and the tax revenue these jobs created.
    Here is a simple solution. Since these Corporations have “opted” to put our workforce on unemployment, I would suggest that for them to bring back into this country, their “American brand, and Trade Marked products” that are made elseware, to be sold on “our markets”, that we surcharge these big companies a huge import tax. Do not charge the Countries the tax, charge the Big Corporations the tax. This will do three things, 1) It will reduce the deficit, 2) It will convince our corporations that we are on to them, and we are no longer going to be forced to buy “foreign” manufactured goods, 3) It will bring the jobs back into this country. For every additional person that works in America, more revenue is generated to pay off our debt.
    Run on this campaign and you’ll have a landslide victory in 2012
    We need someone that will work for us , not the political machine,or the rich, and Corporations.
    Thanks for your time and listening ….kenminuteman
    We the working class people are coming 2012, PASS IT ON till Republicans and everyone get the message

    • Holger

      well, you american people ask for globalisation, now please live with it.
      raising tax for big companies will not really help. Due to globalisation they can have their HQ wherever they want. As a western country with high labour cost you should improve quality (look at the cars made in US – the worst ever seen!) and work on innovations. Well, it is not easy for a country supporting a elite of 2-5% of the population only. So you need to change this. Educate your people, get them away from the coach. It is impressive that in the news paper USA Today; the number one news was baseball and the debt crises of your own country is mentioned with view lines only. Do the american politicians realy want dumm people, which consume only ? It seems that this was the aim of the past 3 decades. But unfortunately you killed the cow you want to melk (thanks to Greenspan and co.). The “cow” consumer does not give milk anymore. Now what next? time to change to more equal and good education. Americans are flexible, aren´t they? So lets do it.

      • Holger

        sry typo …. couch NOT coach

      • Pigbitin Mad

        That would be a good thing but since the Rich do not want it, it will not happen. We have to stop buying their foreign made crap and resolve to stick to it. Dump it all into the ocean if you have to. And if these corporations don’t like it, they can go overseas and not import anything at all. Find with me. I would rather go back to the 1930’s than put up with this bull.

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  • Pigbitin Mad

    They are all a bunch of clueless jerks. #FUCKYOUWASHINGTON They should be wiped out by an angry mob. The problem is, any solution that does not involve machine guns will not work.

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  • Guest

    Great more partisan movements.