I admit, during the last few months I’ve stopped reading the news. The whole world seems to have gone mad.

No, I haven’t completely quit following current events — what kind of a journalist would I be if I did that? — but somewhere between the swamp-draining, hacking and Brexiting, I felt as if I’d entered a dark, parallel universe. And I had to look away.

You too?

Yet here we are. The whole world has gone mad, and it’s our world. Now what?

I’ll tell you what. The small-minded, paranoid forces that have gotten a taste of power are feeling emboldened. They’re hammering me with emails that accuse me of being a “liberal.” (I’m no fan of labels, but that one doesn’t offend me at all.)

They think consumers don’t need protection and they throw around terms like the “nanny state” when they try to spin their straw man arguments against my pragmatic advocacy.

Well, I’ve had enough.

I am not going to go mad with the rest of the world.

This week — and particularly this Thursday — the forces of reason and compassion must push back. And they will.

I believe thoughtful government regulations are good, not evil. I think there’s no more corrosive and harmful force on this planet than unchecked and unregulated capitalism, better known as pure human greed.

And when it comes to consumers, I don’t believe in an “us” versus “them.” There is only a “we.”

If you are as horrified by the way companies treat their customers, and indeed, the way people treat other people in this post-truth era, then you’ll want to pay close attention to what happens next. It’s time to offer a polite but firm rebuttal to the fools who got us into this fix.

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness,” Martin Luther King Jr. once said. “Only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

I think it’s time to switch to the brights and to lovingly confront our adversaries. I’m ready to do that.

This week’s columns are a good start. My Washington Post story about visiting Cuba before it’s ruined is a perfect example (see comments). And you know what, those folks are entitled to expressing their opinion, even if they’re wrong.

I take airline trickery head-on in my latest USA Today column, in which I note that no one except airline shareholders asked for “basic” economy class tickets. Think this kind of thing will get worse in the next four years? Yeah, me too.

In my Huffington Post column, I discuss ways you can break free from your computer operating system. If you hate your PC, it’s definitely worth a read.

Why won’t United Airlines compensate this customer for a delay? The answer is in my weekly syndicated Travel Troubleshooter column (via the Hartford Courant). Oh, and don’t forget Problem Solved. My latest case, involving an AT&T overcharge, is a must-read, of course.

I’m really grateful for all the media pick-ups last week, which included the Seattle Times, Chicago Tribune, Philadelphia Inquirer, Newsweek, KRLD in Dallas and the nationally syndicated show This Morning: America’s First News with Gordon Deal. I also had a great time talking about advocacy issues with my friends at the WSJ podcast.

Thanks for being part of my advocacy. Thanks for supporting truth, facts and reason. Don’t worry, we’ll get through this together.

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