To be sure, 2018 was my annus horribilis, which is Latin for “Maxine Waters from behind.” So I’ve been taking comfort in the small things. For instance, I must be the best-dressed person ever to apply for food stamps. I kid, but it hasn’t been easy for Milo this past year, newly impoverished. Sometimes I lay awake at night, desolate, sadder than a CNN reporter who just found out the shooter wasn’t white.
Anyway, you probably think I’m delighted to see the back of a terrible year. But the thing is, I’m not. Everyone I know is demoralized and broke. Everyone’s finding it hard to survive. Except I’m not. (Demoralized, that is. I am definitely broke.) Somehow, despite my well-publicized professional struggles, this has been the happiest year of my life. It’s also been the most productive and the most spiritually fulfilling.
This was always going to be a rotten year for the faithful, as the revenge exacted on Trump’s most prominent supporters really began to bite. Just look at Bill O’Reilly, once the most powerful man in the news. He’s podcasting from his basement! Gavin McInnes has been scrubbed from the internet, joining the cool kids’ club of which I am founding member and life president. My friend Laura Loomer took down the Women’s March this year single-handed, just one of her many remarkable journalistic accomplishments.
But like the rest of us, she isn’t getting a fraction of the recognition she deserves. None of us has a berth at a major media outlet. Some of my friends are even staring down the barrel of gratuitous legal Hell, such as the heroic Roger Stone. Roger is being punished by Robert Mueller for not rolling on the President. His friends, intimates, former business associates and others are all under surveillance. Including me, I’m sure. It remains unclear what the outcome of this taxpayer-funded harassment might be. But whatever happens, Roger has been through a vastly expensive nightmare having done absolutely nothing wrong, because he has the wrong politics and the wrong friends.
As for me, I’m not worried about the next few decades. Talent always wins. All things considered, my hardships are neither the worst being endured by a conservative media figure nor the most humiliating. I’m something none of my critics and no one else in the conservative media world is: a bone-fide international celebrity. So I’ll always be okay in the long run. And I have learned so much in the past twelve months. For instance, I just found out what Chlorox wipes are. And have you heard about “polyester”? Man-made fibers. Crazy!
I know now that I have to start making better decisions, especially about who to trust. I’ve been betrayed by a lot of people. You know who you are. What you don’t know is that I forgive you and wish you every happiness. I hope you find the peace you seek, because I’ve found mine. (Nothing is more deeply wounding to your enemies than grace, forgiveness and love.) I am still the most censored and the most lied-about man in America, if not the world. But the lies and lunacy have only rekindled the fire in my belly. I love nothing more than seeing people gleefully declare my career dead—that sort of hostility has always made me hard.
Incidentally, I love going out in public at the moment because everyone’s so awkward around me, and obviously I live for that. When you’re used to seeing looks of raw, unadulterated hatred everywhere you go, pity and schadenfreude feel like a holiday. I’m not like normal people–“shame” is a foreign concept to me–so ill-wishers have been very disappointed not getting a reaction from me in the street.
Not having money and having to budget and watch my ingoings and outgoings has taught me about cause and effect, which means that one thing necessarily follows another. For instance, if you’re a woman and you don’t get married and have children by 30, then you will be unhappy for the rest of your life. It has also transformed my philosophical outlook. It turns out the best things in life really are free. Wrath, bitterness, envy, revenge… none of them cost you a dime!
I’ve been worried about getting ugly, because poor people tend to be pretty gross. But I realized that’s not an essential condition of penury, they’ve just given up. I have no intention of doing so. A note to my critics, in case they haven’t got the message yet: I am never ever ever going away, and I don’t care what names you call me or what you do to me. You can’t stop me being right, and you can’t stop me being happy. Most of all, you can’t stop me telling jokes and you will never get me to compromise myself for money or acceptance.
I’ve always instinctively understood that capitulating to the enemy is a bad idea. 2018 proved that thesis right with the Kavanaugh confirmation. The Left has really shown people who they are this year, and not just political dorks like you and me. the country at large. They’re on the back foot, vicious, hysterical and sounding ever more ludicrous. Just where we want them.
Generally speaking, nothing bad happens when you stare bullies down, secure in the knowledge that when challenged, they crumble. And for those bullies who do throw a punch, I’ve been reading a lot and writing a lot and practicing a lot in my year out of the spotlight, honing my skills for the battles to come. The past year has taught us all that the enemy we face, although wounded, remains powerful, ruthless and evil. So we have to fight back with all our might while not compromising too many of our principles.
I’ve also always known that adversity breeds character, which is why I was the school bully. See, I’m one of life’s givers, and I wanted everyone around me to get better. I admit I wasn’t quite expecting to live that truth so publicly myself, but you know what? I am a better man already. Now everyone knows what a broke hoe I am, and holy heck has it been liberating not having to keep up appearances. Now I don’t care what I wear or how I look when I go out (okay, that’s a total lie, but it turns out hot people look hot even in cheap clothes, who knew) and I am discovering a completely new focus on what matters.
I’m not going to lie to you. I was losing my way a bit before all this happened. Maybe I got carried away with the money and success. I wouldn’t be the first person to lose their moorings a bit, giddy with attention and resources and the love and adoration of millions. But faced with the prospect of losing it all, I reflected on what people liked about me in the first place and I’m ready to roar back in 2019 without all the trappings and trimmings, back doing good work, taking out the bad guys and showing off something different from cars and jewels: my intellect.
This year, I reflected on what I most cherish in the world and realized that it isn’t having nice things. It’s the love of my husband, the best person I have ever met, it’s my faith, complex though my relationship with God may be, it’s the sound of laughter in a room when I deliver a really terrific one-liner, and it’s the look on someone’s face when I comprehensively floor them in a debate. 2019, for me, is about getting back into the ring and reclaiming my world championship title.
2018 was the first year I could honestly say I was not only happy but content. It’s no coincidence that it was the year I fully embraced the three things without which no one can truly succeed in life: faith, family and unsecured personal loans. As Philip Larkin put it, what will survive of us is love. Not Louis Vuitton. Even though there’s an $8,500 jacket in the Miami store right now that I would happily slit a vegan’s throat to take home. See, there I go again, cracking a stupid joke when I’ve just made a really good and true and profound point. Clearly, I have some work still to do.
My Christmas wish, then, is for everyone to experience a little slice of Milo’s 2018. I know that sounds like I’m wishing you all a miserable 2019, but what I really mean to say is: Don’t be afraid of hardship and humiliation. I’ve grown more and gained more this year than in the previous 33 combined. And it has done absolutely nothing to soften my resolve. Have a blessed Christmas, everyone. Here’s to another four decades of laughter and war.
Milo Yiannopoulos is an award-winning journalist and a New York Times bestselling author. He is Editor-at-Large of DANGEROUS.
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