3c. Online News
As postmodernism and new technology collide, our news sources online are becoming more fragmented and we are often free to choose not just the ‘values’ we prefer but also the news streams focused in specific interest zones. The internet, (at least until it becomes totally controlled) has bought us some alternative options and ways of gathering our news. Back to the ‘filter bubbles’ concept – we all live in a ‘filter bubble’ of sorts.
For example right now my Google News settings might bring me news streams showing reports on British Government Solar PV Tarrif and news on Codex Alimentarius, Monsanto and international trade agreements. I am more likely to read a blog than a newspaper and generally pick up news of World import from Radio. My Facebook friends all publish positive and visionary articles otherwise I unfriend them, because I want thoughts and links that help me believe I live in the world I like! Yes – I’m a hypocrite too who likes to avoid ‘doomscrolling’!
Hopefully the democratisation of knowledge on the internet is part of an ongoing evolution of consciousness in humans – allowing us all access to the information we need. Wikipedia, criticised early-on for inaccuracies is a growing resource of people friendly information. When I think of the amount of information at my fingertips now compared with twenty or thirty years ago, the changes are just immense. Social media too, allows people more ready access to peer group discussion and helps them to form values that, (if they can get their faces out of their phones) can lead to productive activism. Even supposedly ‘open’ forms of social interraction like FaceBook are now turning to editing stuff to consensus reality or imposing ‘independent fact checkers’.
Part of the transition process from the ‘industrial growth society’ we have now to a ‘life-sustaining civilisation’ depends on us changing our ‘stories’. Our stories are entrenched in ‘news values’. News from the ‘industrial growth society’ tells us stories of austerity, gloom, doom and despondency, how bad it all is, because these negative beliefs serve capitalism. Pessimism preserves the status quo. Think for example the psychological effect of articles like the following:
Telegraph: Doomsday clock for global market crash strikes one minute to midnight as central banks lose control.
China currency devaluation signals endgame leaving equity markets free to collapse under the weight of impossible expectations. When the banking crisis crippled global markets seven years ago, central bankers stepped in as lenders of last resort. Profligate private-sector loans were moved on to the public-sector balance sheet and vast money-printing gave the global economy room to heal.
Time (Xetra: 17T.DE – news) is now rapidly running out. From China to Brazil, the central banks have lost control and at the same time the global economy is grinding to a halt. It (Other OTC: ITGL – news) is only a matter of time before stock markets collapse under the weight of their lofty expectations and record valuations…
Yahoo News: Earth Is Now ‘In The Red’ – We Used Up This Year’s Resources Yesterday.
Every year, ‘Overshoot Day’ comes earlier and earlier. Human beings have just exhausted the planet’s supply of natural resources – meaning we are ‘in the red’ from now on.
Every year, ‘Overshoot Day’ – the point where we go into ecological ‘debt’, in terms of the amount of carbon we emit, and crops we use up – comes earlier. This year, it arrived yesterday [16.08.15] – six years earlier than it did in 2014, according to an estimate by the Global Footprint Network.
The GFN says that our consumption began to exceed the planet’s capacity by the early 1970s – and as the world’s population expands, it has been getting worse each year.
Humanity’s carbon footprint alone more than doubled since the early 1970s, when the world went into ecological overshoot.
Yahoo News: Human Beings ‘Could Die Out’ In New Mass Extinction.
Many scientists believe the next mass extinction event is already underway. Human beings could be wiped out in the next mass extinction on Earth – and our huge numbers won’t save us, scientists believe. Many believe that we are on the brink of a sixth ‘mass extinction’ event – caused not by an asteroid, but by human beings.
Researchers from the University of Leeds analysed fossils from the Jurassic and Triassic periods to see how species were affected by a mass extinction event. Around 200 million years ago, around 80% of species were wiped out by an event thought to have been triggered by volcanic eruptions and climate change.
Through the media we see a world of fear and intimidation, simplifying complex stories into black and white, us and them, creating personal and nationalistic divides to prevent any meaningful response. We are fed distractions in terms of ‘celebrity’ and stories of the meritocracy like Strictly or X factor. They show shiny bling, meaningless gossip, endless choice with no real options. Using the power of media, the stories, the news, we are fed messages of fear and intimidation. We are offered distractions and easy answers where it is either option A or Option B, because this divides us into two opposing camps to keep us distracted and ineffective by arguing with each other.
Below is an example of what the media should be telling us, compared to what they do actually tell us.
|What you need to know about:||The news we get in mainstream media:|
|Why bats are dying by the millions||Who got murdered|
|Why bees are dying by the billions||Ivana Trump|
|Why bird populations are plunging||Who said what that doesn’t matter|
|Ocean acidiﬁcation||Kanye West and Kim Kardashian|
|The melting ice caps||Car chases|
|Dangers of natural gas fracking||Who is getting divorced|
|Tar sands pollution and its dangers||The First Lady’s workout routine|
|The toxic radioactive waste still streaming out of Fukushima into the Pacific||Sex scandals|
|GMOs, Monsanto and the problems caused by toxic farming policies||The stock report|
|Potential food shortages because of drought, soil depletion and the plunge in wildlife populations||Who is gay|
|Polluted and depleted aquifers||How many cars are selling|
|How to grow food||Who got arrested|
|Hazards of industrial pollution||Drama in D.C|
|Lies your government is feeding you||The housing market|
|Lies the financial system is spewing||Sports drama|
|Lies about the tax system||Misinformation about history|
|How your rights are being violated||Who got an award|
|Damaged, clunky, aging nuclear power plants and their dangers||Courtroom scandals|
|The realities of war||Gas prices|
|Depleted uranium bomb residue from the ongoing wars and how it is spreading via weather patterns||‘Reality’ show drama|
|Growth of the prison industry||What’s being built|
|Lies about the War on Drugs||Whatever subtly perpetuates fear|
|How to disconnect from fossil fuels||Travel and leisure stuff|
|Permaculture and sustainable living||Who bought something expensive|
|Importance of organic foods||What haircut to get|
|How to work with your neighbours||A little about racism and sexism|
|How to become more self-sufficient||Corporate products to buy|
|How to improve your community||Who had a baby|
|Air pollution where you live||What Trump did next|
|How to get pure water||What colour to wear|
“The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion but to allow lively debate within that spectrum.”
According to George Monbiot, the recent outbreak of elected oligarchs across the worlds is because the rulers of money have discovered a formula that persuades poor people to vote for the interests of the super-rich, through ownership of the media.
This formula includes massive lying and manipulation of ‘meanings’ at an unprecedented level, hence the invention of ‘fake news’. Social media, TV and news sources are all being used to push through the killer clowns we now see heading our ruling systems and they will do whatever the oligarchs want.
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