Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Media, polls and herding

Please note that I am not trying to encourage any type of political agenda. I just think we have more than we sometime realize. And we are not thankful for the freedoms that we enjoy. I recieved the top portion, author unknown, in an email, the bottom portion is my take on it.

"The other day I was reading Newsweek magazine and came across some poll data I found rather hard to believe. It must be true given the source, right?

The Newsweek poll alleges that 67 percent of Americans are unhappy with the direction the country is headed and 69 percent of the country is unhappy with the performance of the president. In essence 2/3s of the citizenry just ain't happy and want a change. So being the knuckle dragger I am, I starting thinking, ''What we are we so unhappy about?''

Is it that we have electricity and running water 24 hours a day, 7 days a week? Is our unhappiness the result of having air conditioning in the summer and heating in the winter? Could it be that 95.4 percent of these unhappy folks have a job? Maybe it is the ability to walk into a grocery store at any time and see more food in moments than Darfur has seen in the last year?

Maybe it is the ability to drive from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean without having to present identification papers as we move through each state? Or possibly the hundreds of clean and safe motels we would find along the way that can provide temporary shelter? I guess having thousands of restaurants with varying cuisine from around the world is just not good enough. Or could it be that when we wreck our car, emergency workers show up and provide services to help all and even send a helicopter to take you to the hospital.

Perhaps you are one of the 70 percent of Americans who own a home. You may be upset with knowing that in the unfortunate case of a fire, a group of trained firefighters will appear in moments and use top notch equipment to extinguish the flames thus saving you, your family and your belongings.

Or if, while at home watching one of your TVs, a burglar or prowler intrudes , an officer equipped with a gun and a bullet-proof vest will come to defend you and your family against attack or loss. This all in the backdrop of a neighborhood free of bombs or militias raping and pillaging the residents. Neighborhoods where 90 percent of teenagers own cell phones and computers.

How about the complete religious, social and political freedoms we enjoy that are the envy of everyone in the world? Maybe that is what has 67 percent of you folks unhappy?

Fact is, we are the largest group of ungrateful, spoiled brats the world has ever seen. No wonder the world loves the U.S. , yet has a great disdain for its citizens. They see us for what we are. The most blessed people in the world who do nothing but complain about what we don't have , and what we hate about the country instead of thanking the good Lord we live here.

I know, I know. What about the president who took us into war and has no plan to get us out? The president who has a measly 31 percent approval rating? Is this the same president who guided the nation in the dark days after 9/11? The president that cut taxes to bring an economy out of recession? Could this be the same guy who has been called every name in the book for succeeding in keeping all the spoiled ungrateful brats safe from terrorist attacks?
The Commander in Chief of an all-volunteer army that is out there defending you and me? Did you hear how bad the President is on the news or talk show? Did this news affect you so much, make you so unhappy you couldn't take a look around for yourself and see all the good things and be glad? Think about it......are you upset at the President because he actually caused you personal pain OR is it because the "Media" told you he was failing to kiss your sorry ungrateful behind every day?

Make no mistake about it. The troops in Iraq and Afghanistan have volunteered to serve, and in many cases may have died for your freedom. There is currently no draft in this country. They didn't have to go. They are able to refuse to go and end up with either a ''general'' discharge, an ''other than honorable'' discharge or, worst case scenario, a ''dishonorable'' discharge after a few days in the brig.

So why then the flat-out discontentment in the minds of 69 percent of Americans? Say what you want but I blame it on the media. If it bleeds it leads, and they specialize in bad news. Everybody will watch a car crash with blood and guts. How many will watch kids selling lemonade at the corner? The media knows this and media outlets are for-profit corporations. They offer what sells, and when criticized, try to defend their actions by "justifying" as free speech, even when that speech is hate.

Stop buying the negativism you are fed everyday by the media. Shut off the TV, burn Newsweek, and use the New York Times for the bottom of your bird cage. Then try to count the blessings you do enjoy for all we have as a country. There is exponentially far more good than bad, but good doasn't sell does it?"

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On a personal note, we threw out the cable over a year ago, and the only tv programming we watch is Lost after wed night church. The money I once spent on cable is now spent on dvd's. There are a million things to do with each other, to connect personally with one another, that we simply would not do if the idiot box was on. We canceled our newspapers about the same time. I got tired of the comics section being more up a left wing soap box trying to indoctrinate my kids to those views. We had to stop listening to NPR for much the same reasons. The thinly veiled disdain for the Christian right just became too tiresome to explain to my kids as we drove. My CD collection has grown considerably.

Actually, it was shocking when I turned on the TV to watch Lost itself (I had previously only watched the season DVD's) I could not believe my eyes. What passes for commercials these days....are we really that desensitized? After not seeing commercial programming for only 9 months, it was like soft porn clips between the show I was trying to watch. It genuinely revolted me.
This culture is hyper sexed to distraction of the basic logic on the freedoms we do enjoy and what it takes to maintain them. The media preaches against the government while saturating our brains with sex so we equate feel good sexual sophistication with swallowing their lies whole.

Bah.

Maybe I'm a bit opinionated on this....but then, I have the future of my kids to think about. How can I let this garbage saturate them day in and out and expect them to have a world view that is different from what the media's is? How can I explain to them that as Christians we are to live in the world, but be separate, if I myself do not separate?

Sometimes the truth just slaps you in the face its so obvious, but most often, its the truth itself that is just hard to face. In the Bible people are called sheep, and I think thats a pretty darn good description of us when we are in groups, or being told the same propaganda by different chanels of the same media group.
A friend of mine out west once told me, "If the group is heading one direction, its probably wiser to go the opposite way". I think I'm going to have to incorporate that into my daily decision making process.

2 comments:

Jess said...

Yes, but what about the knitting?

Dana of the Pointy Sticked Clan said...

Oh fine, I guess this IS supposed to be more about knitting


sigh