Over the past year or so, I've been struggling to articulate exactly why the practice of data protection has frequently felt like a defeatist slog. A few days ago, I read an amazing piece by Zvi Mowshowitz, and it helped to define a form for all the thoughts swirling in my head. It's really very simple: The current approach most of us have towards data protection and privacy does not motivate anyone towards positive action that meaningfully protects data or privacy. Instead, we're encouraged to spend cycles on pointless privacy theatrics, so that we can signal to others and ourselves how much we all care about privacy. This is a broken model, and I've got some ideas for how to fix it.