Hey, you know what bugged me about 2014? People whined too much. They kept saying the sky is falling. It was all the Koch Brothers’ fault and Obama’s fault and the one percent and immigrants and gays and Christians and atheists.
Get a grip.
The world isn’t anywhere near as bad off as we keep getting told. Violence is actually down. Fatal diseases are actually down. No, seriously. Despite the most idiotic efforts by Jenny McCarthy (Hint: Jenny is not a doctor.), polio is nearly extinct. India still has isolated pockets of the same disease that likely wrecked FDR’s legs. Guess what’s ranking really high on India’s to-do list.
Currently, there are only two cross-border wars. The Ukraine and Russia, and ISIS in the Middle East. Those are a couple of scary yawners. Oh, and Ebola? Still raging in Liberia, but only Liberia. More people have been married to me than have died of Ebola in the United States.
There are people with a stake in keeping you scared. Go watch Fox News or CNN or, what the hell, MSNBC. They’re sort of a news network. The message is the same. You’re gonna die! You’re gonna die! Republicans/Obama/ISIS/some disease you will never, ever get/the police and/or black people will kill you! Wanna know why they keep hitting that drum beat? Is their some grandiose conspiracy to keep the populace scared and docile?
The secret is Applebee’s. And Volkswagen. And Samsung. And Tampax. That’s right. Scared people watch the news a lot. When a lot of people watch the news, advertisers get warm fuzzy feelings and write the news networks bigger checks to pimp their wares in 30-second chunks. And here’s the worst part: Fox, MSNBC, and CNN have twenty-four hours of airtime to fill.
Here’s a modest proposal. Start watching the news in half hour chunks. Really, do you need to listen to Sean Hannity whine for an hour or two every night? He’s a cowardice peddler. All pundits are cowardice peddlers. Remember, they have to keep you good and frightened so you stay tuned and catch those ads for Budweiser. Just watch the news for 30 minutes a day, like Cronkite used to deliver it. Call bullshit when they get sensational. How many of the problems in Ferguson, Missouri were the fault of the police or the protesters? Quite a bit. Guess who else shares some of the blame? That’s right, 24-hour news beating the drum to stoke your outrage and make you scared and keep you glued to the TV.
Right. I have episodes of Gotham to catch up on. No seriously. I need maybe two minutes to know that the police and black citizens in a Midwestern town aren’t getting along and have some issues to resolve. I’d kind of like to know how the stock market did and maybe if there’s something else I need to know about, good or bad.
“So, Jim, you say we’re scared and whine too much on Facebook. What do you expect us to do about it?”
Do? You haven’t been doing anything. Volunteer any? Invent something? Do you even go out and socialize at all? Or are you one of those losers who go “I hate people.”
Yeah, if I spent all my time on Facebook, I’d be praying for an asteroid hit. A big one, bigger one than the one that killed the dinosaurs. But I don’t. I write. I volunteer when I can. And you know what? I actually shut off the laptop once in awhile. Sometimes, I work on beefing up my development skills. Why? Maybe I want to invent the next Twitter or Cars.com. But I can’t do that by complaining that whatever that is doesn’t exist.
It’s 2015, people. Nothing’s going to get better or, more importantly, nothing great will happen posting incoherent rage in social media.