FREEDOM’S ENEMY 5 – Television

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“Watching television is like taking black spray paint to your third eye.”
– Bill Hicks

Hmm… Television.  Isn’t that the invention that made door-to-door salesmen obsolete?  Right, well at least those salesmen had the balls to look you in the eye.

Turning on your TV is a little like inviting a self-effacing salesman into your home so he can hypnotize you and then sell you junk until the end of time.  Actually, that’s exactly what it’s like.

Why have we got such an enduring attachment to television?  Where does our dependency on the “idiot box” originate?  Actually, it originates in a time long before its own invention…

Back during the Civil War, the public’s insatiable demand for war news became a catalyst for mass communications. Newspapers containing reports from the battle lines emerged from all corners of North America. When the publishers discovered how much retailers were willing to pay them to advertise to their audiences, the medium became an enormous opportunity to turn a nation of readers into consumers.

Since then, we’ve been indoctrinated with the idea that we need to know everything that’s going on in the world at all times. We’re saturated with news of events that wouldn’t otherwise affect our daily lives.

Your emotional involvement gets invested into these events, rather than into your purpose.

How do you feel when everything is quiet? I mean, REALLY quiet? Does it make you feel relaxed, or is it somewhat unsettling? Have you even experienced such a luxury lately?

We, as “consumer potentials”, have been trained to find discomfort in quietude.  We’ve developed addictions to the stimulation that the general noise of television, and the steady stream of information, provides. We’ve become easily distracted creatures, like silly little puppies.

Our attention spans have fallen through the floor.

Have you noticed that the companies with the loudest and most abrasive advertising are often the ones with the least dependable products and services? They have to rely on vicious campaigns to trigger annoying jingles inside your brain when you catch a glimpse of their product on a billboard, or at the checkout counter.

One of the worst, and most insidious, aspects of television, is that if you sit down and watch 6 hours of it everything about you is different than if you hadn’t.

We’ve lowered our standards to the point that what passes for entertainment on television actually entertains us. If we don’t think we can dance, we live vicariously through those that do. We feel that a handful of American hopefuls are worthy of our idolatry. We believe that the race is truly amazing.

When did we start to devote our “prime time” to viewing?

Why Survivor, and not sunsets?

For further inspiration in shutting off the shitpump, Adam Baker of Man Vs. Debt has provided us a great list of reasons to ditch television. Read them here.

In the meantime, consider sharing this post with your Twitter followers. Thank you.

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2 responses to “FREEDOM’S ENEMY 5 – Television

  1. ‘Television the drug of the Nation
    Breeding ignorance and feeding radiation…”
    Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy

    Television ‘is the Opiate of the Masses’
    Misquoted Marx

    ‘We sit glued to the T.V. set all night and every night,
    Why go into the outside world at all? It’s such a fright…’
    TV Party, Black Flag

    ‘Trouble vision for a sister ‘Cause I know she don’t know, I quote
    Her brains retrained By a 24 inch remote’
    Public Enemy, She Watch Channel Zero

  2. Pingback: SAVE YOUR FUCKING SOUL | From Out Of The Cave

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