news whore

A woodcut.  No connection whatsoever.
Good night, went crazy and bought blinds for all the windows in the house – hung about 2/3 of them tonight… super simple and really makes the place look a lot better. Sharaun got the results of her MRI back today, a near-complete tear of her ACL – which they say is actually slightly worse than a complete tear for some reason – and a probable meniscus tear as well. Intro paragraph over.

As I’ve commented on a couple times before – I don’t know if it’s just me, or if it’s something conditioned into GenXers, but I have a terribly distrusting nature when it comes to a lot of things – politics and news in particular. It’s just hard for me to take anything at face value when I hear/read it in the news or from a politician’s mouth. Perhaps this has something to do with coming of age at the same the the internet did, when the dissemination of information became almost instantaneous, and the credibility of that information became much more suspect as the digital age simplified forgery and fakery and exaggeration to child’s play. Any person can post any information they want, and reach wider audiences than ever before. Not only this, when it comes to news and politics, I was weaned on things like the Iran Contra hearings – I came to know that people lied, even important people. I came to know that the news was sensationalist, and often pandered to particular “target” audiences. And, after time, I came to see the sometimes subtle partisanship in almost all forms of media and news. Maybe some would say I came to “imagine” these things, that I’m paranoid – but I honestly do have a hard time believing everything the news or Candidate A/B tells me. It seems like everyone lies, or adds a twist to things.

One more thing about me, I’m a news-whore. I am constantly and habitually taking 30sec away from work to point my browser to one of the many news sources I frequent. Unlike my I-don’t-know-where-it-came-from mistrust of media and politics, I can pinpoint exactly how where my fascination with the news started. September 11, from that day I on was refreshing the news webpages at least once every half hour to see what was going on out there. That day I became the addicted news-fiend I am now. However, I have somewhat of a conflict of interests here. Being that I both can’t get enough of, and have a hard time trusting, the news. For this reason, I tend to frequent a lot of varied news sources. I usually start off at CNN, for my dose of semi-sensationalist US-focused stuff. I then bounce around between a smattering of liberal and conservative new sources like IndyMedia and Fox News, before I hit the view-from-the-outside sources like BBCNews. Finally I usually wrap it all up by stopping by some news aggregators like Google’s News page and NPR’s front-page roundup. I figure a quick glance at it all is better than single-sourcing. Whatever. How can I type two paragraphs about where I get the news?

I’m beginning to have serious doubts about my witch project. With things changing so drastically in this late part of the game, I’m wondering if she’ll ever even fly. I’ve all but decided that I’m moving away from the original concept of the witch moving up and down a static line, and I’m now going with an adaptation of the Axworthy ghost “big belt driven loop” system. Not only do I think it’ll look better (I can make the witch fly a constant circuit around the yard, where she’ll cover much more ground and her flight path will be much more realistic), I think it’s engineeringly possible (I made up that word). In fact, if I can get it working, I think an Axworthy-style witch would use the prop to its fullest potential. Now to get it done. I bought some ingredients at the Home Depot today, and have been formulating the “new new” plan. I think it’ll work, but it’s really coming down to the wire. We’ll see how it goes.

I’ve been accused of being a little Moore-ish in yesterday’s over-simplification of the “unchecked savages” rationale for war. And, I admit, I did of course inflate the argument by adding little one-liners about “Baptist” church on Sunday and “God-fearing” Americans. The standard premise of the argument is not nearly as ridiculous as I made it sound: that we were bringing some retribution to a nation of people that has too long been permitted to murder, rape, and plunder at will. Adding the notion of ever-righteous, duty-bound world-policing Americans was more for comedy than anything, but also not entirely farce: as I know from experience some people justify it this way. In other words, there is a whole spectrum of degrees to the “making the world a better place” rationale, not just the for right extreme of Democratizin’ and Jesus-lovin’n up that mongrel culture. I’m sure there are people who feel like Iraq’s number simply finally came up on the “you been pullin’ this crap for too long” list, and now they’re getting a bit of well-deserved body-checking.

That’s fine, and less extreme than my original explanation, but I think it still relies on the fact that a whole country, or even a whole culture or religion, is, or has become, “bad.” (Wow, look at all those commas, but I think it’s still grammatically correct, right?) I mean, is not their argument an over-simplification as well? To make a blanket-statement like “that country” or “those people” need to be corrected? All the people in the country? All the people of that religion or race? Really, all of them? Here’s where, I suspect, we’d get into the numbers game. Like the insurance industry, the war industry must have some math they use when talking about “justifiable” non-enemy losses. I mean, to make an omelet, you have to break some eggs… war is a dirty business, right? So maybe the “majority” of the people in that country, race, or religion are bad… and the war machine can “write off” their loss to the greater good. I don’t know. Again I fear I’ve over-simplified. All I wanted to say was, if this is you’re reasoning for the war – I don’t agree but can kinda, looking sideways, see where you’re coming from.

Lord, I gotta get off this political thing. I’m sorry folks, I don’t know what’s come over me. I promised myself I wouldn’t do this anymore. To change subjects, I’ve been listening lately, almost exclusively, to the new Mono album. Some Japanese band filed on the wordless-loud/quiet-noise that is “post-rock” shelf next to Mogwai, Explosions in the Sky, GSYBE, A Silver Mt. Zion, etc. Great background music to have in the cans at work.

If you’ve got time, I found this a fascinating read. If you don’t have time, your own fascination will have to wait. Dave out.


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One Reply to “news whore”

  1. Thanks for the link to that Wired article – it was really good! One of the smartest and most interesting things I´ve read in a while. Then again, half of what I read consists of this blog, so it´s not like there´s a high standard to overcome or anything…

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