Nothing’s Wonderful and Nobody’s Happy

News in America is like entertainment in America. Absolute garbage. We are shown tons of footage about a mother who possible killed her child. We hear about the sexual misdeeds of an IMF guy. We hear about these terrible things that in a week are not even newsworthy. ((It is highly suspect they ever were to begin with.))

The problems in Japan are still ongoing. South Sudan is now a country. I am sure there is tons more news out in the world going unreported or under-reported so we can hear more about what vapid celebrity has done who lately. It is ridiculous.

I can’t remember the last time I got any real news from a mainstream news source. I cannot recall the last item that I actually thought, “Oh this is important and this is interesting. This is something I really needed to be informed of.”

No, it just doesn’t happen.

Entertainment is heading down the same path. I miss the days of story telling in television programs. I miss the narrative and cast of characters built by writers who put time and effort into crafting a tale for us, the audience, to follow along and get something out of.

Will and Grace is an extremely witty, well-written show. It does it’s fair share of dealing with issues of homosexuality, relationships and dynamics of differing social groups. But it also makes me laugh. I laugh a lot watching the show because the characters have witty things to say because it was written for them.

Television shows today are dominated by Reality TV. ((Which is a total misnomer as nothing that goes on can in any way be misconstrued as real.)) There are shows exploiting the struggles of 16-year-old girls who get pregnant. There are shows highlighting the poor parenting by certain sets of parents who cannot be adult enough to work out their own problems. There is even a show about toddlers being forced to enter beauty pageants and the insane lengths their parents will try to win. ((Isn’t this a mark of the End Times?)) There is no end of the celebrity worship of rich people doing… very little besides screaming at each other. ((Any “real” housewives spinoff.)) It’s all garbage.

There is so little good in television today. Movies are the last holdout for storytelling and intelligent conversation it seems. Though if you’ve seen what passes for a Comedy, I question even the importance of the movie genre for anything but sucking money out of our pockets. ((See: Remakes and sequels dominating theaters.))

I miss the 90s when there were stories to be told and people to follow in those stories. Sure, they are not gone today. However, flipping through our 80 or so channels in our apartment results in very little tolerable television. I struggle to find anything I would even consider having on in the background while I do something else.

We even have a completely dysfunctional political system and government. We already have the least productive congress since 1948 not working for us. The biggest problem is they can’t agree on things and compromise.

“And so the legislative trickle has slowed to a drip. From January until the end of May, the last date for which comparable statistics are available, 16 bills had become law” compared with 50 during that period last year, or 28 in 2007, also a time of divided government.

We have the most divided, fervently stubborn government in years. It’s no wonder they can’t agree on anything or get anything done. No one wants to give a single inch and when one side tries to compromise with the first, the first side changes the rules and decides they don’t really want to do the thing they just agreed to. It is maddening to watch. I am pretty sure if you gathered 535 kindergarteners together we’d see more cooperation.

We have a government, news media and television entertainment that are all broken systems.

To fix the news, focus on the news again. Stop the celebrity worship and the pundits offering their opinion on everything. Report on real stories that affect the life of the people in your community.

To fix TV, spend money on more pilots. Try out new ideas. Stop stealing each other’s original content and shows. We don’t need another show about Rich Women Screaming, Pawn Shops or People Searching For Junk To Sell.

To fix the government is the most simple of them all. Work together. Agree with each other. Try to stand in the shoes of your opponent. ((And remember they are not supposed to be your opponent at all!)) Work together. Get things done and for once, convince us, the US citizens you’re supposedly serving that you’re actually serving us!

1 Comment

  1. Carl,

    This is where I get a lot of my news. You may find it interesting:
    http://www.corbettreport.com/

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