I don’t have a telly, but I visited my mum yesterday and watched News at 10 on hers. Top stories – school girl murderer convicted; one of the conjoined twins die; Queen’s speech marred by Damian Green affair; home repossessions on the up; Ford, Chrysler and GM under threat of bankruptcy; mother dies being dragged under her own car. Isn’t there any good news in the world? Surely someone must have done something good yesterday: someone made money, someone contributed to society in a positive way, invented something really cool or saved someone’s life.
Terrorism, murder, scandal, loss. It’s no surprise that people are afraid. The news is where people get a lot of their information from and it’s no surprise that they think that our government is in a state of collapse, a terrorist or some stranger or the NHS is going to kill you and you could well lose your job and your house tomorrow.
I really believe that recessions would be far more shallow if the news media didn’t talk them up. For them the greater the tragedy, the better. You can hear the disappointment when a tragedy (e.g. plane crash) doesn’t turn out so tragic after all (no fatalities). As a consolation, however, they can still speculate on how bad it might’ve been (‘could have led to death on an unprecedented scale’). Scum. If you turn off the TV, shut the newspaper and actually look around you, the reality is that life is mostly quite uneventful.
Yesterday I left my mortgaged house for my job, didn’t get killed or stabbed and didn’t get blown up. The trains ran fine. During the day I didn’t see any obvious signs of the government fiddling my balls and I worked, got paid and went back to my mortgaged house (curiously, it hadn’t been repossessed), where I didn’t murder my family. In fact, they weren’t dead – my wife was doing some work and my kids were asleep.