Monday, March 12, 2007

The Morning News....

Okay. I'm not picking on KCRA specifically. This is just the picture that popped up most easily in Google. :)

This morning I did a quick blogsurf while drinking tea. ThomasLB at Living Next Door To Alice made a comment in his post that got me thinking. Well, it reminded me of something I've noticed anyway.

He mentioned the giggling and flirting, weather and sports that seem to be the sum total of the morning news. All the news shows in the morning, both local and national, seem to be saturated with silliness.

It's news for adults presented in childish nuggets.

When I first moved to Sacramento, I was looking forward to interesting news. After all, this is the capital of the state. It wouldn't be unreasonable to expect some fairly good coverage of statewide issues, what's going on in the governor's office and what sort of activity might be taking place in the state legislature.

I know. It's asking a lot... but ...

Instead, we get giggling, flirting, weather and sports. Hm.

And here's what sticks in my craw more than any of the rest.

Stop attaching emotional content to weather forecasts! Fer gosh sakes, we're all capable of determining for ourselves how we will feel about the weather. The perky little bubblehead who delivers the weather forecasts on the above pictured but unmentionable news provider in Sacramento has a habit of nearly doing acrobatics while showing her approval or disapproval of the weather. You'd think she got up each day and made a decision.

Today, I'm sorry but we're going to have to put up with some rain. We really need it! You'll be glad this summer for the rain now! (tilts head and looks at co-anchor) Won't we, Edie?

And the temperatures are going to be just beautiful today! Now go out and enjoy it!

I wish someone would tell her she's not the weather mommy and we're not her toddlers!

Finally, at 10.oo AM, I can turn on international CNN where they deliver the weather forecast in a reasonable manner.

It's going to be sunny and 62 degrees in Lisbon.

It's going to be hot and humid in Bangkok at 92 degrees.

It's going to be snowing and 17 degrees in Reykjavik.

Yeah! That's how it should be done!

And while we're at it, how about the morning shows such as Today, Good Morning, America and others.

Who told you that listening to two thousand screaming people standing behind barricades in front of your studio is appealing?



~Chani, living where the weather is beautiful today and I've been duly instructed to enjoy it!


meno said...

Ocassionally when i happen to be at the gym in the morning where the TV is on, i see some of this foolishness. That's why i don't watch morning TV. Or evening TV either for that matter. Watching perky people with stiff hair trying to look intelligent is too much for me.

That was pretty bitchy huh?

jen said...

Amen. I never watch morning TV or even much news on TV at all - but what i have seen, and from what commentary I've been reading lately all seems to point to the opinion replacing the news. or the facts.

it's a slippery slope.

Thailand Gal said...

Meno, I always have to turn it off after a few minutes. What really bugs me is the infantalizing. It's as though all public media is becoming geared for a child's understanding and mentality.

It wasn't bitchy. It's true! :)


Jen, yes.. opinion as fact. That's always done under the rather deceptive term "analysis". Often when you look into the background of the "analysts", you find some very creepy connections.

It's the method used so successfully by the Nazis. "Tell a big enough lie, repeat it often enough and it becomes fact."

Disinformation and propaganda is mainstay on national news these days.




Anonymous said...

Last week we had sub-zero temperatures with high winds. Frostbite weather.

Lorenzo was so out of it with his cold, I sat on the couch holding him one morning and saw those nuts outside at Rockefeller Plaza.

The weather is comparatively beautiful here today, but I didn't really get out. I can't wait until I don't need a stroller to go out with my entourage.

MsLittlePea said...

Yeah. When I lived in Miami, the weather was all about the boobs on the "meteorologist". I mean boobs as in body parts not people. But the people were boobs too.

Lucia said...

Excellent post! I never thought about it, but this sure enough is the way it is. How annoying! How dare they talk to us like idiots?!

Anonymous said...

Are "facts" relative to the past only, when "opinions" are comments for the present or the future?

When Bush says that more dollars and more soldiers are needed to "win" in Irak, is it a fact or an opinion?

If you have a look at my last blog, and see the picture of my great-uncle who posed for "Honneur et Patrie" during WW1 without knowing that he would be killed during WW2, to say that he died for "Honor and native country", is it a fact or an opinion?

When you write that walking produces some good chemicals in your brain, for you it is fact, for me an opinion, but I don't want to be aware of dry facts,(or not only,)I prefer sensitive opinions.( when they make sense)

Anvilcloud said...

We tend to put CBC radio on here in the mornings, and it's pretty good. But a few months ago when I wasn't feeling well, I got up early and watched one of those Good Morning types of shows. Awful.

Peach Pod said...

Do like I do and just watch the news on BBC!

flutter said...

I would rather eat my own eye than watch any media news, at all, ever.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

It's not just the morning news. Evening, too, here in SF. I have noticed this peculiar and unappealing phenomenon creeping over the land for many years. I think news anchors with "personality" began with Chet Huntley and David Brinkley. Those two were such a comfort to each other.

Before their show, newscasters related the news,sometimes with a shocking lack of emotion. Now it's all sparkles and twinkles.

I especially dislike watching the terminally perky news gals smilesmilesmile non-stop while reporting murders and natural devastations. How do they do that? How can they talk while showing every last phony tooth in their mouths?

And yes, it was a nice day today, damnit. I enjoyed it. But not because somebody I don't even know directed me to go out and play nicely with other children.

Anonymous said...

With all the 24-hour news channels available, you would think we'd have coverage of every issue in great detail.

In some cases, that's true: if an attractive celebrity dies young, or commits a crime, or shaves her head, or goes into rehab, we get every last detail. In other cases, like the fine print the Patriot Act or the details embedded in the latest WTO agreement, they just don't have the time for it.

Instead of facts, we get a "debate": Two morons, one from each political extreme, call each other names for two minutes each; the one who gets off the best one-liner wins.

As the Grateful Dead put it, "We're going to hell in a bucket, baby, but at least we're enjoying the ride."

Sevenwinds said...

One doesn't realize the junk the news media and networks are putting out until you live over in another country that has alternatives. I am more informed about world events and happenings living over here in what is supposed to be a 'third world country' by our Thailand local news than the National US networks. A sad testament to how far the media has fallen in the eyes of the public is that most news organizations are struggling to make ends meet due to lost viewers and readership. Hopefully all the bad companies will eventually go broke and we will have objective journalism again in America.

Thailand Gal said...

De, I can only imagine that the constant screeching of the people outside the studio only aggravated your son even more! :)


MsPea, I suspect that much of the "news" now is really a venue for advertising. If you notice, a lot of the discussion is about products or services, cloaked in "news" language. .. kind of like telling us about all the folks waiting outside all night for new things coming out. In that regard, they need the T&A to keep the viewers.

Ridiculous. Really.


Lucia, it's been bugging me for a while and it surprised me that I didn't hear others talking about it. They just seem to accept it.


G, I think there's an appropriate venue for news and an appropriate venue for opinion. When I listen to talk radio, I expect opinion. If I turn on news, I expect news. We can get foreign stations on shortwave but those have to be sorted for propaganda as well (even my beloved Thailand cranks out plenty of agitprop).

I like sensitive opinion as well ~ but I don't like it presented as news.

As for Bush, well, that is his opinion ~ and also serves as propaganda. It will be repeated often enough to make people believe it's true ~ and that it's news. Facts to back it up will be scarce unless it's a fact that the national security establishment considers "safe".

Here's an interesting experiment: Listen to shortwave radio and hear all the information that is considered to be classified in this country.

Everything is for sale here, even the wars. Religion. Relationships. They have to be sold and the facts are skewed toward that end.


Anvil, I wish we could get CBC nationally here. And BBC. The media outlets are pretty locked down in this country and there's a lot of news we don't get.

I read some on-line sources, some from Thailand, some from the Middle East. And, yes, even Al Jazeera. Somewhere amongst all of that, there are some kernels of truth I can pluck out. Most people don't have the time to do all of that though.


Peach Pod, it's not available here except in the middle of the night for an hour on CNN.


Flutter, I'm a news junkie. It's probably no surprise that my addiction has been fed with low-quality junk for a long time. :)


Susan, .. sort of like Katie Couric culture. No substance .. all fluff.

Right now, we are seeing video of an enraged whale.

This is the news.

(sigh) :)


Thomas, many years ago, I was told to pay most attention to the things they are not talking about. They put all of this effluvia out to keep people from paying attention to the important stuff. They keep people diverted with "stuff", fear-based reports, crime stories and advertising.


Sevenwinds, I noticed that in Thailand as well. They even had newscasts in foreign languages! That has also been true of other places I've been. It seems the only places that count on this highly-controlled fluffy, cheery faux news are Britain and the US.


Thanks everyone! I'm glad to know I'm not completely alone in this perception. :)



Pam said...

Now that I'm home all of the time I tried the morning news; very dissapointing. I like Diane Sawyer, but even she's gotten silly. And the business about the weather...well, you pretty much said it. I now check the computer.

Deezee said...

you have very concisely pointed out why there is no way I will ever watch morning (or evening) news!

QT said...

Ugh - I completely agree Chani. I listen to NPR on my way to work and that is about it for my news content.