Monday, November 26, 2012

My Boycott Is Over. How Did It Go?

Well, my scream news blackout/boycott is over as of yesterday morning. As promised I refrained from watching, reading, or listening to any of the popular news outlets in America for two weeks. My theory was that my overall attitude and sense of well being would improve by swearing off the ranters and screamers of American politics. So, was I right?

First of all, I must confess to having been a bit bored with the “just the facts, please” news outlets. The Associated Press is a dreadfully dull outfit. It’s C-Span without video. Awful. I actually found myself wondering what I was missing. The world seemed eerily quiet, unnaturally free of existential angst. Without hearing Rush Limbaugh or Glen Beck chronicling the coming apocalypse, it was tempting to believe that life had returned to it’s relentless monotony, grinding onward, free of Greek drama, but full of farce. Then I fired up the laptop and began wading through my old friends to discover all that I had missed while away.

“Secession Movement Spurred By Racism”

“Churches Offer Concealed Weapons Training”

“Obama Re-elected By Illiterate Society”

“Opposition To Susan Rice Nomination Is Racist”

“New Vending Machine To Dispense Caviar”

“Three Men Brawl Over Pair Of Sneakers In Middle Of Mall On Black Friday”

“ Teachers Hire Stand-ins To Take Certification Tests”

“Republicans Warn Of Shutdown Over Filibuster”

 

It would appear that there was plenty of drama, I was just blissfully unaware. But, is that a good thing? Doesn’t it behoove me as a citizen to know what’s going on in my country? Shouldn’t I be able to talk intelligently about whether or not the secession movement is, in fact, racist? Does the appearance of lots of bumper stickers in Texas and the existence of several petitions with 10,000 names scribbled on them qualify as a “movement”? My church doesn’t offer weapons training of any kind. Should this concern me? Have we totally missed some clear teaching of scripture on this subject? And what about these fake teachers taking tests for real teachers? Are the stand-ins Union members? If not, why not?

The fact is that although my attitudes have improved these past two weeks, I have felt constantly out of the loop, off the grid. I have been greatly disturbed to realize how much I enjoy my sources of propaganda. My daily helping of hyperbole, fear mongering and invective have been sorely missed. Denying myself exposure to it has taken away my sense of superiority. I am not able to hover above all the pettiness and drivel if I don’t know what the drivel-ers are saying.

So, I suppose I will return to my daily routine of pointing and laughing at the merchants of misinformation, all the while bemoaning the fact that too many Americans are doing what I’m doing.