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You do you find interest in this?

Y'know what I think is dumb? When some representative/senator/presidential candidate/pundit of one sort or another says something, and people dissect and parse and thoroughly mangle the intelligibility out of it, blowing it way out of proportion. It's a remark, for crying out loud. That doesn't mean that the person saying it knows a goddamn thing, nor does it mean that they don't know a goddamn thing—it means that they said something. Why is it suddenly a newsworthy scandal when—horror of horrors—a politician makes a speculative, offhand remark?

People do this all the time, yet politicians, by dint of being part of this elite in the public eye, must suddenly be forced to recant and reinterpret and qualify every statement they make. I understand that it's a choice one makes, becoming part of the government, and that with that choice come certain responsibilities. That said, why must everything be made out to be some hot, contentious scandal? What are you bloggers and news writers doing when you make a big deal out of things like this?

I'll tell you what you're doing—you're lending credence to the idea that to garner public interest, everything must be scandalous, must be a two-sided argument, and that people simply won't be interested in anything other than the latest water-cooler gossip from Capitol Hill. Who gives a shit? These people, these politicians, become something else entirely, something not-quite-human, when they sign on for the job—but they wouldn't become nearly so inhuman, so sound bite–oriented, if they weren't goaded and hounded by you rabid news fiends. They are largely irrelevant in our everyday lives. Why must it be a scandal when one of them strays from the faux-intellectual crowd and actually speaks fucking English?

Here's an idea—why don't we just ignore all of this? That's what I've been doing, and I find it makes me a lot happier. Reading the news doesn't make me a fun person to be around—it makes me despair and leads me to think life on Earth is a lot worse than it needs to be. Every time I read the news I get inflamed about something—and while it might be true that the world is going to hell in a handbasket, as I've found plenty of evidence that supports that view, I really think that a lot of the problem is this phantasmagoric, fantastical shit that the media concocts for our consumption.

You bloggers, you wanna-be pundits, you drink this stuff up and spew out your take on it and then grin your shit-eating grins, happy on the road to perdition. Why don't you write about something meaningful? I'm sure you think that you're doing something good with yourself, though, by writing about these things and providing "commentary." Where would we be without all these talking heads and "real live interviews" providing us with commentary? I'm mindful of sounding like my father as I say this, but I really do think we'd all be better off if we didn't read the news and didn't watch most of what's on TV these days. While I'm not necessarily a paragon of mental health myself, the fact remains that if I kept up with current events beyond hearing murmurs from various people with hints of the turning tide, I'd drive myself nuts!

None of this is necessary. These things you exalt in, they're ephemeral. No one will care if you got the scoop on some piddly story, and in a year it will be long-forgotten. This may sound pessimistic, but I think it's simply realistic. News, news...soon we'll all be running our wordstogether in our newfound tongue, practicing up for the days when Newspeak is the way to go.

By the way, please stop calling Saddam Hussein "Saddam" like he's your chummy next-door neighbor. Saddam this, Saddam that. Why not call him Mr. Hussein? Or, if you're speaking in even a semi-formal context, use his full name once and then call him Hussein for each instance thereafter. C'mon, kids, this isn't hard.

9:41 pm, December 16, 2003 :: the jablog years

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