Thursday, November 19, 2009

Media Frenzy

As a writer, the one thing I've never been interested in is pushy journalism. Or just plain silly or sensationalistic journalism. Of course, there are some excellent journalists, but they are greatly outnumbered by the sensationalistic ones. One of my favorite blogs, Margaret and Helen, had a post on October 30, 2009 where she summed up some things that had recently been in the news. In her usual funny way, she shows how the media went over the top on just a few things:

Here are my thoughts – for what they are worth:

  • Even if he got it for remembering to leave the seat down for Michelle and the girls, Barack Obama getting the Nobel Peace Prize is a good thing. Don’t we want the United States to be seen as an instrument of peace in the world? Erick Erickson probably had trouble spelling his own name in grade school and Michael Steele is clueless as to the irony of his job title.
  • The little boy didn’t get into the balloon. End of story. To report anything more is helping a means to an end that leads to a reality show none of us needs to see.
  • Sarah Palin wrote a book. It was co-authored by a million monkeys on a million typewriters.
  • Is Jay Leno at 10PM really all that different from Jay Leno at 11PM? What network executive came up with that stroke of genius?
  • The Boston Tea Party was a key event in the growth of the American Revolution. The British Parliament responded in 1774 with the Coercive Acts and the Colonists in turn responded to the Coercive Acts by convening the First Continental Congress. The crisis escalated, and the American Revolutionary War began near Boston in 1775. The 9-12 Project, by comparison, was proof positive that people who watch Glen Beck can’t spell.
  • The only person I like less than Rick Perry is Dick Cheney. What a shame Kay Bailey Hutchison has lost her sense of smell because that is one big pile of shit she just stepped into.
  • Palin having an opinion about Levi Johnson “selling his body” is like Roman Polanski having an opinion about Woody Allen’s choice in girlfriends. Pot meet Kettle.
  • John and Kate minus eight equals one jackass and the woman who deserves him.
  • Give Rush Limbaugh a football team. Who better than he understands the effects of massive head injuries?
I get that these news channels have to fill up 24 hours worth of programming. But what exactly would be wrong with filling up today’s 24 hours with thoughtful reporting on what happened during yesterday’s 24 hours? Anything else really is just opinions disguised as news.
As usual, well said. And funny. She basically says what most of us are thinking.

And for the overreaction from far too many on the trial of the 911 terrorists in New York City: Are you kidding me? First of all, no one has EVER escaped from a maximum security prison. Trials have been conducted on some of the worst criminals in history, and it hasn't gotten half of this reaction. Secondly, if these guys somehow did get free (ya, right), how far would they get in New York City? They wouldn't make it off of the courthouse steps. As discussed on the Daily Show:

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The point is, the media is so completely out of control on most of these things. Those of us who have (a) Common sense on the larger issues, and (b) Have a life so we don't give a rip about the stupid things (a floating balloon), find it all pretty ridiculous. It would actually be really sad if it didn't give writers and comedians such great material. I mean, seriously. Or, as Margaret always says at the end her posts: "I mean it. Really."

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