News

"News is what somebody does not want you to print. All the rest is advertising." - Anonymous

"What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information. Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egoism. Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us. Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance. Orwell feared we would become a captive culture. Huxley feared we would become a trivial culture, preoccupied with some equivalent of the feelies, the orgy porgy, and the centrifugal bumblepuppy. As Huxley remarked in Brave New World Revisited, the civil libertarians and rationalists who are ever on the alert to oppose tyranny "failed to take into account man's almost infinite appetite for distractions". In 1984, Huxley added, people are controlled by inflicting pain. In Brave New World, they are controlled by inflicting pleasure. In short, Orwell feared that what we hate will ruin us. Huxley feared that what we love will ruin us." - Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death

Thoughts

  • The news is not the end product, we are.

  • The media are merchants of fear, anxiety and doubt. Scaremongering hacks our brains and distorts it.

  • We are preprogrammed with fears that we've outgrown the need for. Danger and violence are not equally distributed. Imported fear hacks our attention (negativity bias).

  • It's used as a tool for profit and control. The more fear is imported, the more freedom can be extorted.

  • The news consumes us. We must be aware that most news is propaganda or entertainment at best.

Links