Knowing how to Read or Listen Involves Careful Thinking

Disclosure:  This post appears in slightly different form on a private social media page. Local news reports often place dirty laundry entertainment ahead of informing the public. It’s all about ratings, clicks or selling papers or magazines.  There’s a combination profit-power motive. That’s partly the fault of the public, and partly the fault of people who have sold out to a competitive rumor-mongering system (the latter do that to stay in business, which is our fault because we fail to boycott sensational reporting). It’s also partly the fault of people outside the “news community” who release or fabricate information to … Continue reading Knowing how to Read or Listen Involves Careful Thinking

News Vs. Shock Media — Or, Don’t Get Me Started

Disclaimer:  I am not a mental health professional.  The views expressed in this post are based on personal observations and printed matter for the general reader. A separate post on this topic appears on Facebook. If you keep track of current events, I hope you’ve given some thought to the distinction between journalism and gossip that just panders to the public’s voyeurism. Last night I was in a supermarket checkout line, thinking maybe I should have chosen a different checkstand.  Clearly, the retail grocery counterpart to Inspector Clouseau was failing at his attempt to pull up totals on the cash … Continue reading News Vs. Shock Media — Or, Don’t Get Me Started

Bertolucci’s Insensitive Sensationalism

I’ve never been a fan of Bernardo Bertolucci’s films, although I’ve seen only two — Last Tango In Paris, and the abridged version of 1900. I saw both on VHS tapes when I was in my thirties, and believe fair, adult-level thought helped me reach a conclusion: The movies were hollow and sensational.  They were made to shock and gross out the audience, and leave gullible people thinking they’d seen something unique. In the United States, we’re too easily impressed by films made on other continents, and if one of us suggests a foreign film has more pretense than substance there’s hell to … Continue reading Bertolucci’s Insensitive Sensationalism

Combination Blog Post-Facebook Screenshot Today

This should have been posted to the blog first and then shared on social media, but today it went the other way around. Ahmad Khan Rahamia is now in custody, suspected of being involved in Saturday night’s bombing in the Chelsea District of Manhattan. Clarification: There’s no indication that the hoax originated with the NY Post.  However, the Post was one of the — maybe one of many — outlets to report the claims.  The blog in question was registered with tumblr, which deleted the user’s account immediately after being notified of the problem. Continue reading Combination Blog Post-Facebook Screenshot Today