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Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Bad News on the Doorstep, I Couldn't Take One More Step

The title comes from the iconic song American Pie.

Like many folks, I suspect, I've been pretty burnt out by the news.  By "burnt out" I mean overexposed, bombarded, gun-shy.  Now normally I'm a ravenous consumer of news, mostly in writing, from a variety of sources.  But post-election I've been doing my best to stay away from it all.  No NPR Morning Edition (replaced by a local classic rock station) during my shower, no more news feeds in Facebook.  It's not that I want to be uninformed, it's just that I think I've felt over informed over the past few months.

The world will survive without my attention.

I'm sure that others will keep their eyes on things.  Part of this is due to, well, poor performance by the media over the past year.  The whole conglomeration of the news helped create the national pickle we are all in these days.  They were, in my estimation, "played" for free coverage by President-Elect Donald Trump (particularly in the Republican Primary) and had an unstated (but clearly obvious) desire to see Hilary Clinton elected.  If anything, one truism coming out of the election is how truly detached the national media was from the actual concerns of the American people.

This isn't a "liberal" vs. "conservative" thing either.  As I've said before, Donald Trump isn't really a conservative, political or otherwise.  He is his very own breed; if anything maybe "nationalist" or "corporatist" is a better description.  I'm sure a review of Trump's Tweets would show a fairly even amount of venom spat at both traditional liberals and conservatives.  Just ask Charles Krauthammer.

All of the above should be taken with the qualifier that I am not a media expert (see THIS GUY if you want that sort of thing).  Heck, outside of maybe Beatles trivia and what I do for a living, I'm pretty much not at expert at anything.  It's easy for me to say "the media failed", but when you think about it, we rely on the media to help guide us, so what happens when the guides seem just as lost as the rest of us?

Anyway, I'll be enjoying a hiatus from national news for a while.  As with the way most things go, I'll probably slip back into being a big news consumer sooner rather than later.  For now, though, I'll stick with listening to "Freebird" in the shower.

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