It’s been coming for a while now, but the recent election announcement tipped the scales for me over the weekend. I’m not watching the news for a while. I’m over it.
Normally I watch one of the six o’clock bulletins, or the local news at 6.30 pm, and the ABC news at 7pm. I read some national daily papers, The Australian, The Courier Mail from time to time, and the mighty Gladstone Observer everyday.
Usually in the Observer I’ll scan the headlines, then skip to the Letters to the Editor, the daily columns (check out Mondays’ columnist, that bloke is a genius… apparently), comics (Overboard, Trevor and The Swamp being my faves), death notices and Today in History. The rest is filler…
And once a day I’ll pop over to the ABC News website to check out the latest, and read the readers comments, there are some very funny people out there, and I genuinely enjoy seeing what they have to say.
Mrs Gb likes to watch Sunrise of a morning. Sunrise and its’ ilk, represent all that is wrong with news reporting today. The news has been turned into ‘infotainment’, where the news readers have become ham actors (smile, frowny face, knit brows together, smile again, crack inane joke). I’ve come to the realisation that these shows are basically designed to fill space between ads for Harvey Norman and other big retailers.
Regional news is either shunned, or duckshoved away to the back after all the ‘breaking stories’ have been presented, and only if it’s a particularly slow news day.
The last time I gave the news the flick was when the ‘War on Terror’ began back in 2001. Watching Bush, Blair and Howard act up a storm to get the world involved in a never ending conflict for oil was too much to bear each day, so I stopped tuning in. And it took a couple of years before I tuned in again; much to my regret.
I was not surprised to see that Israeli’s were still being bastards, the Palestinians were still firing rockets and encouraging young men and old women to be suicide bombers. The US was still at war and threatening more war. And at some point China went from being the Evil Empire to Our Economic Saviours, and newest bestest friends; even if they still don’t care a lick about human or animal rights, and don’t have a problem poisoning the environment, or our food, or executing folk by the truckload for numerous, and often spurious, reasons. Horrendous things were still happening to good people and cameras would be shoved into their faces to capture all the grisly details of their grief and trauma, while the broadcasters licked their chops and watched ratings soar. Obviously people like tuning in to get depressed and angry.
If only we’d started ‘The War on Stupidity and Dumbing Down’, or better yet, ‘The War on Greed’ imagine how much better off the world would be?
So, without further ado, I shall avoid the tv and radio news, and any current affairs for a while. Maybe this time it’ll be forever, because life is too short to be treated like a drooling moron.
James Dibble! Come back, your country needs you!