It’s been five years since the “mainstream media” – ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN – met an untimely demise at the hands of what was then-called “New Media.” Rather than being a blow to “real” journalism and public accountability, America finds itself getting its groove back.
Defying the concerns of political pundits across the land, the country has unexpectedly managed without the mainstream media just fine. Some even think the death of the old media was addition by subtraction.
“Ever since the CBS evening news went the way of the Dodo bird, my blood pressure’s down, I no longer have chronic diarrhea, and I’ve started talking to my neighbors again,” said 85 year-old Darlene Middleton of Waterbury, Connecticut. “My life just couldn’t be better.”
“At first I was kind of bummed out, scrambling to find trustworthy sources of information,” commented Dale Langford of Bedford, Arkansas, a lifelong Democrat. “After doing a little digging, turns out the bastards were lying to me. A lot.”
One cannot fail to notice the moral and philosophical vacuum at the heart of American culture. The absence of serious striving for higher truth has caused some sensitive and thoughtful souls to wonder if Americans are consigned to a deteriorating civilization. Alternative intellectuals urgently hope for a re-awakening. When that cultural renaissance is reticent to come, they ponder in frustration if Americans actually do deserve their fates.
But one also must take note that though the Old Media have dominated the culture for decades, they are growing steadily more unpopular along with their increasingly deceitful and manipulative “narratives.” The Internet has provided a forum for free discourse, which has stoked a desire for new information and has fostered ways of looking at the Old Media from an outsiders’ perspective; as cultural relics, rather than engines of national and international discussion.
Notoriously uncurious Americans in many ways do deserve what they get, but it is hard not to notice, for example, that there is an astounding lack of choice in television news. You either get the same predictable left-wing news that is so boringly infuriating, or the workaday pablum of the FoxNews channel. It’s either the spokes-organ for the Democrat Party, or the infobabes and the grotesquely premeditated neo-conservative flag-wavers at Fox. There apparently is no serious, objective news source for conservatives, even though they make up at least 50% of the country. One might speculate that Americans became “uncurious” because there was no honest and reliable place to turn for news. Devoid of intellectual substance and plagued by misinformation and disinformation, the Old Media have forced many Americans to turn to New Media sources to supplement their understanding of contemporary events.
But though ignorance can be explained in this way, the cult-like tendency of the mass culture to elevate mere mortals to godlike celebrity status requires further explanation; if not, observation.
There does seem to be a connection between the perpetual spiritual emptiness and moral bankruptcy of a modern culture and its tendency to elevate entertainers and celebrity politicians to status above the so-called masses. This politically corrosive phenomenon is both reflective of the existential void at the heart of the civilization, its frivolous approach to life and politics, and the tendency of the intellectual peasantry to be enraptured in the ever-fleeting “moment.”
These “cultural moments” shift from the authentic shared experiences, such as the Apollo moon landing, to ones generally contrived by the cultural manipulators and the grandstanding politicians, for example, Obama delivering a Euphemean speech before Greek columns. Our political culture degrades from true leadership capturing the pulse of a people and speaking to their concerns and desires to careerist charlatans who unceasingly regale us with grandiose platitudes, which are ultimately meaningless and futile as the civilization’s accumulating trials and tribulations overwhelm it.
America was the greatest nation in the history of the world, and a rare exception to the annals, so filled with war and bloody oppression at worst, and miserable tedium and frustration at best. It was thus the greatest threat to the narcissistic rulers whose sole purpose in life is to subsist on the egos of their followers. Without the most miraculous of miracles, the nation will become a footnote in history, notable primarily for its purposeful self-destruction, engineered by those who hate freedom, and in a broader sense, life and reality itself.
Do Americans deserve this? The majority of Americans disagree with their deceitful and destructive politicians, but being decent people, are reluctant to use extralegal means to dispose of their tormenters. They thus turn to entertainment, to salve their minds and their consciences, constantly strained by the usurpers of their civilization, who seem to be daring the citizenry to rise against them so they can unleash a torrent of hell upon earth.