Monday, April 12, 2010

How to Make the World a Better Place.

I think that the news on television should be read by robots.

But we'll get to that later.

I've been pretty open about myself in some posts on this page, but I generally make a point of avoiding any mention any specifics regarding my personal life or political views on this page. It isn't that I don't feel strongly about things, it's just that I started writing this blog (and have been consistently less consistent about writing in it regularly) to tell stories about stupid things I notice from day to day and the mind-numbingly awkward occurrences that have befallen me in my life as a caricature artist. I haven't intended to eschew my views completely, it's just that I don't think that anybody would really care about what I think in terms of politics or worldview. Which is probably why you've stopped reading this by now and resumed watching videos of wiffle-ball induced crotch injuries on YouTube. Hey, I'd be doing the same thing if I wasn't typing this right now.

Anyway, I've decided to violate my own rule. I know that I'm not, in any way, an authority on the subject, and I'm about as qualified to talk about politics as a violinist is to talk about aeronautical engineering. But I have my reasons.

The biggest reason is one o my new responsibilities at work: comment moderation on the message boards. You know, at the bottom of articles posted online, you can choose to comment on said articles. Now, I'm one of the people that deems whether or not the comment that you have posted is appropriate in a public forum.

This means that if any comments are:

  • unnecessary personal attacks on other posters or anyone that isn't in the public eye,
  • making use of language typically considered vulgar,
  • racist,
  • sexist,
  • homophobic,
  • or in some other way a violation by the standards of the Terms & Conditions,

then I am one of the people that blocks said comment from view of the public. Personally, I'm not easily offended, but I generally agree with said Terms & Conditions in what I think is appropriate to post in a public forum. I have only been doing this for a week now. And I've already decided that I hate a whole lot of people that live in Cincinnati.

Seriously. I've seen some of the most backward, idiotic, insensitive statements that I could have ever imagined, and that's not just the comments that I've removed. There is something very, seriously wrong with people.

Fortunately, I think I know how to fix everything. Except, that is, for the spelling. Apparently, the strength of one's opinion is inversely proportionate to the person's skill in spelling and use of grammar. Ironically, these are usually the same people that feel that everyone in the U.S. should learn English. Go figure.

Anyway, I have it all figured out.

The news on television should be read by robots.

I'm not saying that robots would do a better job than news anchors; as a matter of fact, I think that most news anchors, especially the network ones, are extremely talented. It's just that any subtlety in facial expression or vocal intonation can be interpreted as a political leaning by people f*cking crazy enough to look for such things so they can discredit it. And believe me, they do.

I'm also not saying that opinions and/or political leanings can't still be expressed in writing. I don't think that has to change. I just think that the subtleties of the written word can be interpreted in more ways than speech and body language.

Therefore, in order to retain the journalistic principle of absolute non-bias, the news needs to be read by robots. Faceless, emotionless robots that look like Hal 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey. Except that the light is exactly 50% grey, instead of, say, red or blue or white. Otherwise, the color of the light could be interpreted as indicative of a political leaning or racial bias by people f*cking crazy enough to look for such things so they can discredit it.

You might be wondering why I think that the news should be read by cold, unfeeling mechanical beings. I'm not finished quite yet.

Secondly, television or radio shows with any bias towards a political viewpoint, especially those on channels themed after news programming, will be outlawed. All copies, digital or otherwise, are to be destroyed immediately. The time slots will be replaced by 50% Grey Newsbot.

I realize that, as you read this, might ask, "Hey, what will this fix? Because right now you sound like a total sociopath." And you're right. This topic is, admittedly, making me talk and think like a crazy person. I've come to the realization that the problem isn't with the left or the right. The problem is that people aren't listening to the news and then forming their own opinions based on facts. They're just listening to someone else who tells them what to think, because they're either lazy, stupid, or both. And the people that are spouting rhetoric on television are getting about as close to mass misinformation as you can get.

This is why this country is currently so polarized, politically. I mean, come on. People are either behind our president and what he's trying to accomplish, or they actually believe that he's a Kenyan-born Muslim sleeper agent that dabbles in Marxism. 

That isn't normal.

Yeah, the recession has been hard on a lot of people, and I understand that. But health care reform does not make us a socialist country, people. It's just health care reform. About health care. Reform that only affects your freedom to not pay for health care. You're overreacting. Lots of other democratic countries have socialized health care. The rest of your freedoms remain unaffected. No one is going to show up and take away your precious guns. Storm troopers are not going to come to your door to shake you down for your tax payments. Inversely, the Bolsheviks are not going to invade the White House to round up the First Family and execute them, and, if they did, they should have come during the last administration, for no other reason than that Dick Cheney is a practically flawless analogue of Rasputin.

I guess what makes me the angriest is that the American public is being taken advantage of right now, and I don't think that many people realize it. People are unemployed, underemployed, and stressed out. They're looking for answers, so they turn on the news. They turn on the news looking for facts, but they don't get facts. They get speculation. They get opinions that, rife with exaggeration, rile them up and make them angry, regardless of political leanings. The news networks see that people are watching their batsh*t crazy shows, and the high ratings that result from it, and keep pushing. They push and prod the people that watch these shows disguised as news programs, and viewers start freaking out more and more. The rhetoric starts getting more and more intense, further away from logic.

Then it involves me, because the comments under a news story on, about the opening of an ice cream shop, somehow start with people talking about the economy and ends with people arguing about how we need to rise up against our socialist president who is actively ruining our way of life because he and his family hate white people.

Come on, think about it. That's f*cking crazy.

That's crazy, and this can't keep going on. People in the American television news industry, you need to realize that you can only push people so far before they snap. All it's going to take is one of these jackass pundits to say something that can be interpreted the wrong way, and some Michigan militia of lunatics is going to plan an attack on the Capitol building, or an unemployed factory worker is going to shoot up a police station, or something equally f*cked up is going to happen. Actually, check that, it's already happening.

And the saddest part is, people are going to get hurt or killed because cable news networks want the ratings that guarantee advertising dollars. It's about money. Let me repeat that. IT'S ALWAYS ABOUT MONEY. You people out protesting with your picket signs need to calm the f*ck down. Television is making you crazy, and we all know it's television because the clever sound byte you've hilariously misspelled on your sign came straight out of the mouth of someone who was paid to antagonize you so you keep watching their stupid show.

Maybe if television news channels focused on other things, like, I don't know, the two wars we're involved in, or maybe even an occasional reminder of how totally f*cked Africa is, we would even out a little bit with our priorities, as far as things we should really care about. We need to remember that other people have real problems in the world. People in other parts of the world are starving, or running from death squads, or getting blown up in subways. They aren't whining about losing a nearly insignificant amount of their personal freedom.So, my theory is that, if you actually force people think for themselves instead of telling them what to think and how strongly to think it, then they'll calm down and we can avert the chaotic breaking point that we're swiftly headed towards right now.
I know, I know...this doesn't give the American public a whole lot of credit for not being mindless sheep. But hey, does anyone remember the lady that told John McCain on live television that she could prove, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that presidential Barack Obama was an Arab? Not even a Muslim, not even a Muslim extremist, an "Arab". How about that guy the yelled "Kill him!" while Sarah Palin was speaking about Obama at a rally? That's a whole lot of conservative talk radio right there. We're not mindless sheep, but we have to admit to ourselves that:

  1. There is a scary number of people that believe everything they hear on TV or on the radio.
  2. There are personalities on TV or on the radio that tell people crazy, crazy things so people keep paying attention to them.
  3. Television networks and/or radio programs that theme themselves after news programming have an ethical obligation to offer non-biased factual accounts of current events and little else. Some people might call this "news".

Let me gently make the point that I know that the government tends to screw us over from time to time, as taxpayers, citizens, or just people that place trust in our elected officials. I'm not saying that I think the government is perfect, far from it. Even if I lean left of center, I'm still not saying conservatives are wrong. Every effort deserves a look from more than one angle. I just think that we need to concentrate our efforts on concepts based on truth.

The truth.

The truth, as in, not theories that the country is undergoing a complete redistribution of wealth to black people so they can buy crack and abortions with their health insurance. You stupid, awful bigoted backwards redneck idiots.

And yes, a lot of people will come to the same delusional conclusions without any help from television or radio programs. But I think that it's a step in the right direction. Remember fifteen years ago, before the internet was as popular, when there was a certain stigma attached to living off the grid, in a log cabin in Montana writing angry letters to the government? I doubt that doing this sounds anywhere near as crazy today.

In the meantime, I will avoid paying attention to biased programming and continue to take a non-politically-biased stance on moderating comments on the message boards, even if makes me want to move into a log cabin in Montana and spend my days writing angry letters to people that make idiotic comments on

1 comment:

joe said...

• Great article, it's helpful to me, and I also like the useful info about ray ban.
• Your do have some unique ideas here and I expect more ray ban sunglasses articles from you.
• I like your ideas about ray ban glasses and I hope in the future there can be more bright articles like this from you.
• You have given us some interesting points on ray ban sunglasses sale. This is a wonderful article and surely worth reading.
• We share the opinion on ray ban eyeglasses and I really enjoy reading your article.
• This is the best ray ban aviator article I have ever found on the Internet.
• I greatly benefit from your articles every time I read one. Thanks for the ray ban aviator sunglasses info, it helps a lot.
• I totally agree with you on the point of ray ban wayfarer. This is a nice article for sure.
• I appreciate your bright ideas in this ray ban wayfarer sunglasses article. Great work!
• This ray ban warrior sunglasses article is definitely eye-opening and inspiring.
• Thank you so much for sharing some great ideas of ray ban polarized with us, they are helpful.
• Good job for writing this brilliant article of ray ban polarized sunglasses.
• Great resources of ray ban 3025! Thank you for sharing this with us.
• I love this ray ban 2140 article since it is one of those which truly convey useful ideas.

Bright idea, hope there can be more useful articles about ray ban.

Thank you so much for sharing some great ideas of ray ban uk with us, they are helpful.

It has been long before I can find some useful articles about ray ban sunglasses. Your views truly open my mind.

Great article, it's helpful to me, and I also like the useful info about ray ban sale.

I greatly benefit from your articles every time I read one. Thanks for the rayban store info, it helps a lot.

This ray ban aviator article is definitely eye-opening and inspiring.

Your do have some unique ideas here and I expect more ray ban wayfarer articles from you.

You have given us some interesting points on ray ban warrior. This is a wonderful article and surely worth reading.