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Re: [existlist] Media "coverage"

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  • ken
    Sad but true. Fortunately there s been quite a few books published recently (and not so recently) that are well worth a browse. On the other hand, I quit
    Message 1 of 6 , Jun 2, 2005
      Sad but true. Fortunately there's been quite a few books published
      recently (and not so recently) that are well worth a browse. On the
      other hand, I quit watching the local news decades ago. Shortly after
      that I canceled my subscription to the local newspaper, the Cleveland
      Plain Dealer. It used to be a good paper until about the time Reagan
      came into office. Much of the media has been corporatized and
      politicized and is now little more than a circus. That people want more
      was amply demonstrated by the popularity of "Fahrenheit 9/11" and "The
      Corporation".

      For years I've been getting much of the news from foreign sources: BBC,
      Deutsche Welle (the German version of BBC), CBC. Some day I'll add RFI
      to that list. Used to be, that required having a shortwave radio.
      Thanks to the web, these now available much more easily. (Strange, but
      I found that the German and English broadcasts of DW covered the news
      quite differently, the English version being the same pablum that US
      commercial radio puts out. So don't judge on that.)

      There's still US newspapers which are still worth reading, but not
      many. Again, the web is a friend. In addition, there's (yet another)
      new technology-- pod casting-- we can avail ourselves of. Actually
      there's quite a bit of solid news available in our world, much more than
      can be discussed in a short email. If there wasn't, it would come to us
      to make and/or find a way to it.

      ken


      Exist List Moderator wrote:

      >Watching the news, I'm struck by how little is said about the why of
      >anything. I think this is because the public likes simple, horse races,
      >winners and losers. It would be hard to explain politics, medicine, or
      >science in detail with only two minutes per segment.
      >
      >Why do most people just sit there, watch the news, then turn on
      >"Friends" or "Simpsons" reruns? I think it is because no one bothers to
      >connect the news to daily life. It's all just trivia.
      >
      >The entire Deep Throat nonsense is like watching a game show, with
      >little bits of trivia unessential to the story. Do you know the color
      >used by Deep Throat as a signal? (Do we care?) Heck, it's all silly
      >little things they can mention, without saying anything at all.
      >
      >I've been reading The Guardian, waiting some thing of substance on the
      >EU votes. So far, the coverage is all about "Is this a win for Blair?"
      >Huh? What about the people of Europe? What does this mean to the
      >economies? But, no, the coverage is simple: does the French vote give
      >Blair "political cover" to delay a vote.
      >
      >No wonder people tune out... I haven't learned much of anything from
      >the British or U.S. press this week except Deep Throat liked Red and
      >Blair couldn't wait for Chirac to lose the EU vote. Neither bit of data
      >gives my life meaning or changes the decisions I will make. Silly me, I
      >want to be informed by the media... so I will pick up a non-fiction
      >book and read.
      >
      >- C. S. Wyatt
      >I am what I am at this moment, not what I was and certainly not all
      >that I shall be.
      >http://www.tameri.com - Tameri Guide for Writers
      >http://www.tameri.com/csw/exist - The Existential Primer
      >
      >
      >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      >
      >


      --
      A lot of us are working harder than we want, at things we don't like to
      do. Why? ...In order to afford the sort of existence we don't care to live.
      -- Bradford Angier
    • Exist List Moderator
      ... I will admit to a vice: I love Mythbusters, Good Eats, and other science lite programs. I think anything I can recreate in my kitchen (well, not some of
      Message 2 of 6 , Jun 2, 2005
        On Jun 01, 2005, at 16:22, Herman B. Triplegood wrote:

        > The science oriented documentaries that sometimes appear on the
        > Discovery or
        > Learning channels are almost unbearable to watch. They convey a
        > picture of
        > science that is, frankly, absurd. They are nothing like the Nova
        > science
        > programs I used to watch back in my High School days when I was all
        > about
        > science, and it (the program) was also all about science. Even good old
        > Scientific American magazine has completely re-formatted itself now,
        > and is
        > more like a "tabloid of science news trivia" than the serious leading
        > edge
        > magazine of science, for the science educated layman, that it used to
        > be.
        > Nature magazine is way too technical for the vast majority of laymen
        > to get
        > any real value out of it.

        I will admit to a vice: I love Mythbusters, Good Eats, and other
        "science lite" programs. I think anything I can recreate in my kitchen
        (well, not some of the myths!) is pretty neat. It's like being back in
        the days of Mr. Wizard. ("Now, have your parents help you with this.
        The kitchen stove is not a toy.")

        I recently subscribed to Scientific American: MIND. I found the
        articles, which are predominantly from European universities, to be
        well-written and generally information I had not seen online. The human
        brain is looking more and more determined, which challenges my notions
        of free will. It is good to see how much science is learning about our
        decision making process.

        We have so many news, science, and history channels on the set that if
        I cannot find something of value, it is my own fault. Not that there
        aren't times I want to watch Cartoon Network, but I am an information
        junkie.

        You could wonder what the value of information is. I tend to define
        myself by how much I learn, analyze, and the new questions in my mind.
        For some reason, I feel like I should always be trying to learn more
        from every field of knowledge. It's a compulsion, at times. Not that I
        don't enjoy a good comedy or light read at times, but I crave data
        which I can convert into knowledge when I see relationships between
        facts.

        Knowledge can be exciting. There is something thrilling about merging
        information across fields and developing new ways to approach problems.

        Wish my excitement was contagious, but only a few students seem to
        share my passion.

        - C. S. Wyatt
        I am what I am at this moment, not what I was and certainly not all
        that I shall be.
        http://www.tameri.com - Tameri Guide for Writers
        http://www.tameri.com/csw/exist - The Existential Primer
      • Exist List Moderator
        ... That the left considers the media corporate and the right considers the press a bunch of liberals (statistically, this is accurate only if you
        Message 3 of 6 , Jun 2, 2005
          On Jun 02, 2005, at 0:44, ken wrote:

          > came into office. Much of the media has been corporatized and
          > politicized and is now little more than a circus. That people want
          > more
          > was amply demonstrated by the popularity of "Fahrenheit 9/11" and "The
          > Corporation".

          That the "left" considers the media "corporate" and the "right"
          considers the press a bunch of "liberals" (statistically, this is
          accurate only if you consider Democrats liberal) shows the media are
          probably somewhere in the middle. However, too often they are in the
          middle of *nothing* but what the public wants.

          When you have 500 channels (we now have 700-800 on our cable system,
          with numbers >900 for pay-per-view), it is easy to turn off the news
          and that is exactly what most people do. Most people do not want any
          information, be it a science show or a political debate. The only
          information the American public wants is included in CSI or Law & Order
          episodes. (ER used to have more medical information, but then it became
          more a soap opera and I stopped watching.)

          Even in the UK, the ratings are highest for serials and game shows.
          It's human nature to want entertainment more than information, I
          suppose.

          The Dutch and French did us all proud by buying a lot of informative
          books and watching debates on a political matter. Considering the last
          EU turnout in the Netherlands had been below 40 percent, this might be
          a great sign of change.

          A lawyer we know reminded me that people only care about information
          when things aren't going well and you need a change. When things are
          comfortable, people don't care about politics or anything else beyond
          work and play. People naturally care most when they feel threatened.

          Humans are self-centered, narcissistic creatures. That's just how we
          are.

          - C. S. Wyatt
          I am what I am at this moment, not what I was and certainly not all
          that I shall be.
          http://www.tameri.com - Tameri Guide for Writers
          http://www.tameri.com/csw/exist - The Existential Primer
        • ken
          ... Ahh. The in the middle Weltanschauung/Abkotzensangelegenheit... thanks for the visit. Ya know, a lawyer told me that when hearing two conflicting
          Message 4 of 6 , Jun 4, 2005
            Exist List Moderator wrote:

            >On Jun 02, 2005, at 0:44, ken wrote:
            >
            >
            >
            >>came into office. Much of the media has been corporatized and
            >>politicized and is now little more than a circus. That people want
            >>more
            >>was amply demonstrated by the popularity of "Fahrenheit 9/11" and "The
            >>Corporation".
            >>
            >>
            >
            >That the "left" considers the media "corporate" and the "right"
            >considers the press a bunch of "liberals" (statistically, this is
            >accurate only if you consider Democrats liberal) shows the media are
            >probably somewhere in the middle.
            >

            Ahh. The "in the middle" Weltanschauung/Abkotzensangelegenheit... thanks
            for the visit. Ya know, a lawyer told me that when hearing two
            conflicting stories regarding a traffic accident, a cop generally
            concludes the truth is somewhere in the middle, i.e., that both are
            lying scoundrels not worthy of his precious time, had he had any. Not
            elegant or sophisticated, but quite simple and from the hip (in the
            pre-60s sense)... blind justice transmuted to just blindness. Instead
            of two ears and one mouth, we should all have two mouths and one ear.
            And to my admitted inadequate knowledge of the subject, no one has been
            arrested for giving a false police report in such instances... because,
            I suppose, it's completely expected and quite welcome in the land of the
            constabulary, ergo treks through the topos noetos without stopping for a
            look-see. So I guess the moral of the story is to lie as far as
            credibility allows and so steer that magical, slippery middle to your
            side of this unbowed Western dichotomy... sort of an indirect way to
            tell the truth (??)-!-(??) and conjure up a marching orchestra playing
            "God Save The Queen" disco-style down Main Street and off the edge of
            this great Earth. But then I suppose the cop could look for and then
            perhaps consider the evidence and try reasoning from that, alas. Also,
            there's no evidence that eating a ham sandwich compromises a person's
            credibility, so this shows it wouldn't hurt to eat a ham sandwich while
            testifying... or maybe more if well advertised.


            >[....]
            >
            >Humans are self-centered, narcissistic creatures. That's just how we
            >are.
            >
            >

            Or perhaps how God creAted us, lowly descendents of light-headed,
            treeless monkeys and (treeless) what truly caused Sartre to say we have
            no nature.


            >[....]
            >
            >

            [....]

            (c) What rights we have left, reserved.
            ken (TM)

            --
            A lot of us are working harder than we want, at things we don't like to
            do. Why? ...In order to afford the sort of existence we don't care to live.
            -- Bradford Angier
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