Vantage point

Friday, February 29, 2008

Dumbing Us Down

There has been a lot of talk about how a plethora of reality shows and suchlike are dumbing us down. But nothing shown on MTV or VH1 or American Idol dumbs us down more than 24-hour news channels. The entertainment shows are after all just entertainment. What excuse do news channels have?

And no, I am not just talking about the excessive coverage given to Paris Hilton or Lindsay Lohan or some white woman kidnapped and/or murdered in Aruba or Ohio. I am talking about "real news". The supposed coverage of real news is as dumb as can get. And lately we have been witness to a specific example.

A year ago, news channels were spending hours and hours discussing and analyzing how a Hillary-Giuliani race would be. They were of course relying on opinion polls taken several months before the primaries. Giuliani imploded and Hillary is on her way out. Given how that went, you would think the news channels would learn, evolve, adapt or whatever.

But lately they have been spending hours and hours talking about national level opinion poll results about Obama vs McCain. A whole 9 months before the election! Why? Because they gotta talk about something!

Is dissecting polls which are irrelevant for hours at length really less dumb than watching bimbos fighting for the affection of over-the-hill musicians, actors and comedians?