Saturday, September 03, 2016

The End Of An Era

I did something yesterday that marked a major change for me. It may seem like a small thing but it isn't to me. Ever since the early 1990's when I was a college student majoring in political science, I have always had the first button on my car radio set to the local NPR station. Keep in mind this started before satellite radio and the infinite choices for news on the internet. It was also when Rush Limbaugh was first hitting the scene but only on AM.

Now I grew up in a conservative household and a politically aware household. I knew early on that NPR was "left leaning" but I still listened with my liberal nonsense BS filter running in the background. Their stories were thoughtful for the most part, well researched for the most part and often covered topics that would otherwise not have been addressed on a news source. Sure you had to dig through some liberal nonsense but it was usually worthwhile.

Progressively (see what I did there?) NPR has become less and less listenable. I joke that you could make a pretty good drinking game by taking a shot every time an NPR story talked about "climate change", something about homosexuality or "Black Lives Matter". It started out as a joke but became really unfunny. It may seem like splitting hairs but there is a difference between news with a liberal slant and liberal opinion pieces barley disguised as news. Due to the nature of our work we own several vehicles and every one of them had NPR in the number 1 position.

That changed at the end of the week. I had actually rarely had NPR anyway but I turned over to see what was happening and I landed in a news story about the sexual harassment allegations at Fox News. I have paid no attention to that story because it is pretty obvious that Fox hires women to be on air who look good in skimpy outfits, it is marketing no different from any other. CNN hires boring liberals, MSNBC hires ugly liberals (but it doesn't matter because no one watches MSNBC anyway) and Fox hires eye candy who are willing to say conservative-ish stuff on air. Whatever. Anyway whoever they had on air was rambling about power structures or some other nonsense and I turned it off about as soon as it came on. I have heard that stuff before, it wasn't compelling then and it isn't compelling now. I then switched over to the local classic rock station and held the number 1 button down until it was set.

I am sure NPR doesn't care if I listen but it sort of bummed me out. While we have almost infinitely more sources of news and (more often) opinion, we don't have any sort of connection to each other. We are so Balkanized as a people that it really feels as if we are a bunch of little nations pretending to be one nation. I am just as guilty as anyone else on this, I read political stuff that confirms what I think, I read theological stuff that is well written but rarely tells me anything new

It is just a button. I get that. It just kinda made me sad, sad for our nation.It seems like we have more information than ever before and less knowledge. I don't pine for the days of NBC/CBS/ABC giving us nothing but carefully crafted and monolithic liberal garbage.  I just miss decent arguments and discussion.

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