Thursday, 29 December 2016

Intentional buffoonery

This, from 2005, might explain a few things about our current political landscape:
...we argue here that in an age of escalating global resource war and in the face of an omnipresent corporate entertainment industry, we are now witnessing a subtle, intentional and seemingly permanent transition to the politics of distraction. Celebrities become politicians, and politicians aspire to become celebrities as voters are relegated to the role of fans. All the while, power is ever more concentrated in the hands of a few who stage manage pseudo-events from behind the scenes.

Without independent access to information about what occurs behind the scenes, the public is ever more marginalized and diverted from effective engagement as citizens. In the most powerful democracy on Earth, with non-stop media coverage of political celebrities, national politics have become a sideshow where clowns and buffoons strut and bellow across a movable stage to divert the public’s attention from what is really shaping their lives and determining the future fate of the planet. This shift to a permanent politics of distraction deserves deliberate scrutiny if we hope to move beyond it...
From From Sidekick to Sideshow -- Celebrity, Entertainment and the Politics of Distraction: Why Americans Are “Sleepwalking Toward the End of the Earth”, by Timothy C. Weiskel, published in the American Behavioral Scientist, Volume 49, Number 3.