Tag Archives: media

Media Enchantment (Cosmic Radio broadcast 4-28-12)

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Don't believe any of what you see and only half of what you read

And so, boys and girls, let me tell you the story of a man named Jed, he was so poor he barely kept his family fed, but then one day…. He struck it rich! And so, once again we are enchanted by the media. It could happen! A miracle within our pathetic hard working existence! We could strike it rich! When I was a kid I recall watching the Beverly Hillbillies on our black and white television. More recently, in fact just a few days ago, I was reminded of how we are all affected by movies, television, and all other sorts of media. We are media saturated! I was with my coworkers in Muir Woods and in the midst of all of this breath-taking beauty, my coworkers were reminded of the movie ‘Star Wars’ which was partially filmed in Muir Woods. I recognized how so much of our lives are filled with the media. It has a much more powerful impact upon our lives than we recognize.

It used to be that storytelling was the means to enchant the masses. The drab lives of everyday people were enriched by the stories they heard. These myths held a special power, and in a sense, were far more real than the actual physical existence people experienced. Dreams are important. They allow us to create the kind of reality we desire. Popular media is instrumental in shaping our dreams.

No one understands this fundamental principle as well as the politician. The truth isn’t as important as what we think is true. Perception is tantamount. We bathe in the media each night, and are frightened and manipulated by the media. We are instructed in what is important and what is not. We are reminded that we live in a crazy mixed up, and violent world. You are instructed in what to buy to really gain the acceptance of these invisible people all around you, that judge your every move.

This is sick. It has gotten out of control. We are approaching a time of hyper-reality, enhanced reality, which so saturates us that we have no choice but to tune it all out. There will be a backlash to this enchantment. There has already been some backlash. What is disguised as entertainment nevertheless conditions us. We form opinions unbeknownst to our conscious minds. It effects our voting and our social interactions. We become overly concerned with branding, and sexuality, and lose sight of what really matters. This is a dark enchantment designed to distract us from the way we have been disenfranchised. We have lost our power to make a difference. Corporations make a difference in the twenty first century. And, as you know, they are people, aren’t they? It is incumbent upon us to resist this enchantment and be skeptical of all media. This program of total mind manipulation has not been as successful as they would have liked.

We are not stupid, and we have capabilities that we have only begun to explore. We are not just passive consumers any longer. We are interactive with our world, and we will not allow ourselves to be duped. Politicians are going to find it much more difficult to find a simple message to dull our senses and lull us into compliance with their agenda, which is driven by a lust for power and wealth. They are ironically the victims of their own enchantment. The power brokers are just as taken in by the lure of various forms of pornography, be it sexual or not, as any of us, perhaps more so.

Media is a powerful tool. It is not as harmless as it is often perceived to be. It shapes our opinions, our sense of reality. But to a lesser extent now than in the past. The internet is both helping to dispel this media enchantment and it is aiding in the enchantment itself. However, so long as we have people who are willing to step outside the media dictated norm, this dark spell cannot maintain it’s hold for long. I have hope for the future.

So much for a cosmic radio broadcast on the subject of popular media and it’s dark agenda.

In Praise Of The Pointless and the Trivial

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Sorry Alec, I guess you fulfill an important purpose after all

Not long ago I posted a pretty scathing critique of television and I used Alec Baldwin as the poster boy for poor television. I’m sorry. I have no business getting up on my high horse because if I don’t watch television how can I possibly know what I am talking about? I can’t. Sometimes it is good to not have a point. To just mindlessly exist with no purpose. I’m down with that. I am sick of all this self-important nonsense that I spew. What the hell do I know? Television provides some comfort to many. Our lives consist of work, which we must do in order to survive. Hopefully we like our work, but even then it is still work. When we come home we don’t want to have to think. It is up to us to find meaning in our lives. If you derive satisfaction from television then who am I to deride it? It is a burden to be heavy and significant every moment of your life. The trivial has it’s purpose. It placates the restless anxious mind. That’s a good thing. I think I was being far too harsh on television. True art is a rare thing. If it were common it would cease to have it’s impact and become trivial. Some experiences are meant to be disposable. Enjoyed and then forgotten. Such is television. It never asked to be taken seriously. It was meant to bring a bit of pleasure and information into the average household, to make our lives a little less dreary. There were no lofty expectations, and there ought not be any now. So kick back and watch something fun, something totally dumb and pointless, because that is, in fact, the point. After I wrote that piece, which not surprisingly garnered no likes, I took stock of myself and realized I was full of it. How dare I knock television? By my own admission, I never watch it. FAIL Actually it’s not as bad as all that. It is just entertainment. If you want heavy significance read Nietzsche.

And finally, to belabor the point some more. I find that I often take life far too seriously. I just need to lighten up a bit. Maybe even a lot. I have been spending so much time dangling over the edge of a cliff that I have forgotten how to have fun. Television can offer that, if you let it. You can’t watch television like a critic watches it. That’s no good. Put your judgements in your back pocket and just let it wash over you. Forget all your cares and woes and just cut yourself adrift in an electronic sea. Give yourself a media massage. It helps a lot if you have plenty of chips, a pizza, some soft drinks. Junk food and tv are the perfect combo. You need not become a total couch potato, just restrict yourself to an hour or two of guilt free nonsense. You deserve it. For two hours cease to take yourself seriously, and be a total boob. Have no point and immerse yourself in trivia. That is my advice, although knowing myself as I do I will probably continue to take myself too seriously and indulge in blogging instead of watching television. But I know you will take to this advice with relish, hopefully on a couple of hot dogs. Enjoy!!