As a child that was raised on the nightly news, it surprises some people – and definitely my parents – that I have no inclination to watch the news any more. Zero. I’ve had a couple of conversations about this in recent weeks with different friends, and the general consensus seems to be that I’m not alone. It’s one of the reasons I love syndication: I get my world news by proxy through people I trust and indirectly delegate with the task of keeping me informed of such things. But I happened across this quote from John D MacDonald from here that I thought summed up my feelings on the subject nicely:
The trouble with the news is that everybody knows everything too fast and too often and too many times. News had always been bad. The tiger the lives in the forest just ate your wife and kids, Joe. There are no fat grub worms under the rotten logs this year, Al. Those sickies in the village on the other side of the mountain are training hairy mammoths to stomp us flat, Pete. They nailed up two thieves and one crackpot, Mary. So devote wire service people and network people and syndication people to gathering up all the bad news they can possibly dredge and comb and scrape out of a news-tired world and have them spray it back at everybody in constant streams of electrons, and two things happen. First, we all stop listening, so they have to make it even more horrendous to capture our attention. Secondly we all become even more convinced that everything has gone rotten, and there is no hope at all, no hope at all. In a world of no hope the motto is semper fidleis, which means in translation, “Every week is screw-your-buddy week and his wife too, if he’s out of town.”
A little cynical, perhaps, but I really am that tired of the news. Relentless dissection of the inevitable negativity, with the only respite saccharine human interest stories, punctuated by hosts that seemingly can’t control the volume of their own voice. Spare me. I’ll take blogs over that any day of the week and twice on Sunday. To each their own, but I’ll pass.