January 6, 2003

While this group doesn’t

Filed under: Archives — mhoye @ 12:00 pm

While this group doesn’t contain the promised Ancient Mayan JPEGs,
it does contain something. Theoretically, if I were a
real wanker, I would stop here. But no, not today. My new year’s
resolution is not to waste everyone’s time, and perhaps make people
chuckle if I’m lucky, so here goes.

  • This
    comes from the safety pamphlet they give you on an Airbus
    A320. I’m no expert, but I think the message here is that lifejackets
    can be complicated when you’re stoned off your ass.

  • “Please Don’t Startle The

  • Apparently they’ve seen some desperately slow
    news days
    in Miami recently.

  • At some point you have to just admit to
    yourself that it might be a better idea to stay home.

In less ha-ha funny, but more
I’m-going-to-cry-myself-to-sleep-now funny, news this article, and this one are pretty distressing. It brings
shame to my face as a member of an ostensibly free society when a
complete lack of actual information can rapidly mutate into
wild allegations represented as fact. It’s no surprise, really,
that politicians lie and make stuff up – that’s pretty much a given,
as disgusting as it is. Even though we keep electing them, as a
society we seem to have pretty much given up on the whole idea
of political integrity; you’ll rarely see a politician breaking
a promise or lying anymore. Instead you’re likely to see them
“backing away from a commitment”, or trying to put the right spin
on something. We just don’t hold them to any kind of reasonable
standard. Gross, but there it is. What I want to know is when
did we collectively give up on the media, too?

“A shortage of official information, coupled with
pressure to produce scoops on the developing story, resulted in
heavy cross-pollination among the media.”

Dear God, that’s ugly. It reminds me of the last chapter of
C.S. Lewis’ “The Screwtape Letters”, the bit where good old Uncle
Screwtape describes how, absent the coveted fresh souls,
the hordes of Hell are forced to feed on each other. (“Do
remember you are there to fuddle him. From the way some of
you young fiends talk, anyone would suppose it was our job to
teach!”) So inevitably, we end up with scaremongering crap like this which a bit of judicious editing could reduce
from, in part, this:

“[…] The FBI released photographs of five men Sunday
in hopes they would be recognized. However, bureau spokesman Ed
Cogswell acknowledged the FBI is not certain the names and birth
dates released with the photos are correct, or that the men even
entered the country. Nonetheless, federal and local officials are
taking no chances. […]”

…down to this:

“Look out! Arabs!

So if you’ve ever wondered why public trust in both public officials and
the media are low and sinking fast, I’ve got just three words for you:

Look out. Arabs.


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