21 September 2007

The Media Are Harming Our Society.

There is no doubt that our economy is currently very fragile (it takes no genius to work out that economic growth largely built on debt and speculation is bound to come a cropper sooner or later) but the Northern Rock debacle tells us just as much about the media and the level of cynicism they have engendered in the public than the financial position of the country.

Blair described...
the current media as 'feral beasts' and no doubt you all out there are thinking 'here we go again - Neil is blaming the media messenger' rather than the real culprits, but to be blunt we really do need to do something to control their worst excesses of bias (usually anti-egalitarian, anti-welfare state etc.), not to mention their misinformation and sensationalism. We need to encourage the good aspects of the media - proper scrutiny and neutral reporting that is becoming less and less prominant.

When we ask the public who they trust more - TV reporting or the Press - the answer is TV. For me the difference between the press and TV has to be down to regulation - TV has plenty, the Press very little.

If you keep focussing on the negative (and exagerating and misrepresenting the truth to keep the news negative) all the time - people will start to always think the worst. This is psychologically damaging the country - the bank run exemplifies this.

People now mistrust politicians, 'the government' etc to a huge degree, while big business (with its billions spent on positive propaganda - advertising) gets an easy ride. People should remember they have much more control over politicians and 'the government' than they ever will have over big business. If politicians are vague and spin and clueless it is because of the political system that the people allow. If we want more democracy we can get it - but it has to be fought for.

7 comments:

  1. People now mistrust politicians, 'the government' etc to a huge degree, while big business (with its billions spent on positive propaganda - advertising) gets an easy ride
    Total bollocks as usual - ask Northern Rock.
    Politicians get the exact degree of trust they have proven worthy of - zero. Even you had to accept Blair is a liar.

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  2. BTW Neil, the Government spends millions on propoganda.

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  3. As a Ukipper, I broadly agree. This passing on of half truths and wishy washy PC-global warming crap has gone way to far.

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  4. Urko: 'Government spends millions on propaganda' - Exactly, big business spend BILLIONS not millions and they don't get daily front page headlines slagging them off. Is it any wonder governments are derided - but contrary to what you suggest, it is undeserved. I trust the government more than any company and so should you. When people are really desperate and vulnerable - it is the government that helps most those in poverty, those with health problems. The entire population gets a very good deal - education for their kids, comprehensive health cover, all sorts of services the private sector would charge you more for or not provide at all. It was the government that has bailed out Northern Rock savers when the entire banking industry refused - (They even have the cheek to bleat about how the government let 3 days go by before intervening).

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  5. Mark, of course the media over-simplify because obviously it is not certain that global warming is manmade, it is just very likely. Basic chemistry tells us that CO2 is a greenhouse gas and we are pumping more of it into the atmosphere - that is certain but maybe this fact is irrelevant.

    Maybe in some way you are right and the concentration on climate change IS besides the point. It is improving quality of life that matters to me - for that reason alone we should try to reduce pollution and other damage to the environment. Whichever way you look at it - we cannot continue wrecking our living environment.

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  6. Scunnered. O'Aberdein22/9/07 9:47 pm

    I went to Russia in the early '80's. There was lots of government regulation of all the media. You could trust every word it said.

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  7. Scunnered: What we need is balance in the media. For a time after the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia had the free-est media in the world. But now the oligarchs have taken over it has seriously deteriorated. The British press has never been free because ownership is so narrow. We need to have more than just four foreign based very wealthy men dictating our news. Don't you agree?

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