The Thinking Viking is not a big fan of broadcast television, by and large.  Even with cable TV in my room, the thing is mostly used as a giant monitor for my laptop.  This is a deliberate choice.

I’ve studied psychology, sociology, philosophy, and I …read a lot.  I want you to think about a few things.  First, it is a well-known persuasive technique to simply repeat yourself.  Count how many times certain ads appear, and during which shows.  That is no accident. The content be damned, you see it night after night, and gee, slowly but surely, your opinion sways slightly in favor of Cinnamon Toast Crunch or Coors Light.

There’s an even more subtle thing going on.  Another trick is to restrict what is discussed.  The Newspeak of George Orwell’s famed work  “1984” is the epitome of this – by removing words from the language, you are in effect controlling their thoughts.  The Big Media – broadcast TV and Newspapers/magazines and websites like  MSN and CNN – almost all of them are ultimately owned by only 6 companies, and most simply repeat what ever the Associated Press wire feeds to them.  I was at a local quick-e-mart place, and looked at three different area newspapers.  The front pages on each were identical, article for article, ad for ad, only the name of the paper was changed. So, say something happens that would upset these shadowy giants, say some country banned a business practice that is legal here – you wont see that on the News.  Iceland put its criminal banksters in Jail and basically re-wrote itself. Not on the news.  Say another countries populace is rising up by the thousands and thousands in protests about the same bullshit that almost crippled the US economy – nope, that ain’t on the news either. I marched with people who stretched as far as I could see last fall on November 2, 2011 and shut down the Port of Oakland, CA.  The news said it was 2,000 people.  Ahem, more like 20,000. Or more. You can’t be upset about what you don’t know is happening.  Hear something called garbage enough, and you will find it distasteful. You can’t discuss what you do not know.

You might think I am just talking about the “News”.  Nope – the scripts and subject matter of countless TV dramas and the subject of countless sitcom jokes are also under this sort of pressure and control.  You sit through the show you like, then they hit you with ads, and in fact, they go hand in hand.  the ads are actually much more carefully crafted than many shows – hell, they only have 30 seconds or so to get their message across. Time is money. Do I even need to point out how LOUD ads are? Technically, they are no louder than the loudest part of the shows, but the entire 30 second bit is basically at max volume – another technique to make you accept what you are seeing and hearing.  Its partly why drill sergeants  scream at recruits during boot camp.

So what you get is what they choose to tell you, repeated endlessly and spun by people who have studied the science of manipulation and got all As.

Don’t play the game.  Kill your TV.  This is one of the bad things that you can fix.  There are other ways to find the same content, other ways to get news, other ideas and truths out there that the TV will never tell you.

Think about it.


The Thinking Viking Approves this Message.

(see what I did there?  By “approving” it makes it seem like some outside authority has read this and agreed with me.  But I am just approving my own words. Cool, eh?)

Please see my companion piece “Sex Lies and VideoClips

  1. unitedcats says:

    Obama killed my TV. He has my vote.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s