Tuesday 24 April 2012

News Blindness

I suffer an affliction, a cross I've had to bear for many years. I am partially news-sighted and cannot see what others see. So-called news items which engage the British public often leave me cold and disinterested. I also have a compassion-gap, for which I am extremely grateful. So those two ‘qualities’ make me react rather differently at times to the great unwashed out there. Here are a few of the kind of news stories that regularly fail to move me either way:

I am largely unmoved by stories of babies with ghastly diseases. First, it is not national news. It’s sad, it may even be tragic, I’m happy when they pull through, but I’d rather not hear about it at all, and the overuse of the adjective ‘brave’ devalues the whole story.

Similarly, animals. Animals do things out of blind instinct, not through any humanistic sense of nobility or justice... or bravery, for that matter. The same lack of nobility and justice also applies to many humans. Why then, is everybody mock-surprised when people in positions of responsibility and power and driven by natural human acquisitive instincts turn out to be corrupt, venal or just downright dishonest? So, I really don’t give much of a toss about the Leveson enquiry.

Not all foreign news is of any interest either and this especially applies to American primary elections. Why Twitter glows red-hot with indignation when one religious nut-job wins over a gun-toting redneck in a three-way competition with a climate-change apologist when none of us will ever hear of any of them ever again is beyond me. I bet the Yanks don’t follow the Lickhill ward bye-election.

In the UK we get a lot of weather. We’re bound to, plonked betwixt some pretty disparate confluent air masses and the vagaries of the Gulf Stream gyre. Sometimes it's cold. Sometimes it's hot. Often it’s wet and windy and sometimes you’ll get lots of different weather in the same day. But it’s not news for goodness’ sake and if you can't cope with that maybe you should just leave. Which sort of brings me to the only bit of news I could manage to give a stuff about today

Nobody is struggling with 'grinding poverty' in the UK, no matter how desperately some people yearn for that to be the case. Sure, you might need to reconsider replacing your telly or taking a holiday this year, but you won’t starve. Neither will you be put out of house and home. But if working people can’t afford to live exactly where they want, why should you be able to remain in accommodation those same working people could never afford? I don’t see why poor old benighted Stoke should suffer you, but the principle of moving your unproductive flesh somewhere cheaper is sound enough.

The Hanley Hillbillies - There goes the neighbourhood

Whatever else it is it is not ethnic or social cleansing as this article claims. it is simply the husbanding of scarce resources The working give enough to the unwaged as it is and nobody owes you a living. If you are over here on a benefits raid then maybe it’s time we opened the door so you can return to your former life. Pay for you forever or pay your airfare home? If I were you I’d shut the fuck up, before somebody puts it to a vote.  

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