In the late-'70s, psychologist Walter Burke Barbe identified three learning modalities: visual, auditory, kinesthetic; referred to as VAK. It's a simple and oft-criticized classification system, but in some cases it's sufficient.
Top conservatives on Twitter (henceforth referred here as TCOT), for instance, are a decidedly visual bunch. How do I know? I spent an amount of time I'd rather not disclose monitoring conservative Twitter's prolonged reaction to Wednesday night's Univision Democratic Debate. And while the rest of the world is breaking ground with Twitter's new GIF button, meme-culture is enjoying a thriving second life thanks to TCOT.
This is not to say that TCOT are proficient meme-smiths. Quite the contrary, actually. But just as punk rockers don't necessarily have to be master instrumentalists, TCOT don't necessarily have to know how to use a computer to join the conversation. TCOT memes are a genre unto themselves — and with definitive characteristics:
TCOT love synecdoche — like this picture of a seemingly endless cavalcade of "rapists" and "job-thieves." But to you and me, it seems cherry-picked to fit the narrative, especially considering the U.S.-Mexico border is almost 2,000 miles long, right? Wrong. This is happening all day, every day, and it's why we're not winning, winning, or winning anymore.
Because no TCOT is below retirement-age, conservative meme-artists aren't familiar with the millennial attention span. Consequently, outsiders will end up not reading a good amount of block text. These small-font paragraphs contain indisputable truths, like the whereabouts of Barack Hussein Obama's Kenyan birth certificate and the Bilderberg Group's meeting minutes.
Here's a treat. It's very rare, but not unheard of, for a TCOT's truths to overflow the confines of a meme. Protocol in these cases is for the TCOT to open a Word document and write all his or her thoughts very quickly, without grammatical caution. If you're using a semi-colon correctly, you're doing it wrong. When it's all done, Google "how to take a screenshot with a PC" and follow the WikiHow directions.
Every good TCOT knows that a flattering (or even not unflattering) accompanying picture of Hillary Clinton automatically nullifies any prosaic truthiness the meme might contain. The inverse isn't necessarily true. One could put Rich Homie Quan lyrics over a poorly timed Hillary snap and, like with abstract art, fellow TCOT would assign their own meaning.
What's interesting about this TCOT meme is 1) that it's apparently the reverse perspective of Fig. 1 and 2) how flawless the Photoshop is!
This is the perfect TCOT meme. It has a ridiculously off-hour timestamp, regardless of time zone; a buzzword (in red, the spookiest color) followed by a non-sequitur that to a radical left-wing, America-hating moron might seem like an endorsement of socialism; a non-meme-typeface; a bug-eyed Clinton baring teeth; and an antiquated caption. Magnifico!
Now that I've equipped you with the tools of Internet-cultural ineptitude, all that's left to join the TCOT ranks is a bald eagle avatar and a stockpile of food buckets. Let's make America great again!