The mainstream media continues to keep people distracted with an incessant torrent of detritus.
The world is in turmoil, it really is. Now bare with me for a moment, this will probably feel like old news and of course far too many will either regard it as complete tosh or try to mitigate the seriousness of it. Our biosphere, every ecological system on which we depend to support our lives is in dramatic decline. In January of 2018 C02 reached 408.05 ppm, multiple cities around the world are running out of drinking water, sea level rise is happening and we are doing next to nothing about it, a sixth mass extinction is underway, deforestation is out of control, plastic is taking over the oceans with devastating effects and can be found all over our planet, we are even breathing it in.
There is so much more but you should get the point, you might wonder if things are so bad why are we not doing more about it? I would suggest the main reasons we are not effectively dealing with the serious declines to our environment are two fold.
This is the main reason we are unable to reverse global declines or in fact even slow them. Our entire society is based on earning money to pay to live. For that to happen we need jobs and to spend money. The predominant way to spend money, outside of food and bills, is to buy products. Of course we need to buy products, it keeps companies in profit and able to keep people employed so they can pay to live. Makes perfect sense, right?
Unfortunately the products we buy to keep the system going end up as waste, because of course they are fundamentally garbage anyway. It is a vicious circle, buy, use, discard, buy, use, discard. It has been going on for what feels like ever and shows no sign of slowing. The extraction of resources to produce the things we buy is destroying habitat, the pollution from production is destroying the environment and of course the waste at the end of the ever shortening product life cycle is simply compounding the problems. However we are not ready to question the fundamentals of our economies and so because we need to earn to pay to live we just keep doing it.
The media keeps us well conditioned to the entire system, and of course it is in its interest to do so. Like everything else the media is also economically driven, it is not in the interest of the media to create a well informed public about serious issues, like the decline of life on our entire planet, when that issue is fundamentally economically driven.
If I scroll through a social network media feed what do I see?
Something about a Peter Rabbit allergy scene, treatment for depression, North Korea and the Olympics, the politics of the Black Panther movie, the earnings of small business owners, another school shooting, prison reform, discussion about a medieval drama, someone getting married, a same sex couple having a child, a must read list of books, a porn star getting money, the fucking Illuminati.
I honestly can’t keep looking at it.
Not a single publication about our planet in environmental decline. Nothing. If you walked out your front door, no matter where you were and you could see fires burning it is likely that would result in some media coverage. It would probably be a big topic of conversation, it might even be difficult to find much else to discuss. Unfortunately if the environment is burning in a less visible way we don’t get much coverage at all.
With less coverage the topic is poorly understood and becomes debatable. We don’t debate the damage a forest fire does, we can see it. There it is, there is the damage and there is the cost in lives, property and environmental destruction. It is easy to see and easy to understand. However if that fire is not as easy to see, like the current level of environmental decline on our planet, then it is more difficult to understand and we can have opinions and debate it.
If the media is not giving us wall to wall coverage then of course it can’t be that bad, honestly if the declines I mentioned at the top of this article were really happening then there would not be much else worth discussing, right?
That brings us back to the economy though. The media is all about making money, it needs the economy to remain in a position of profitability. The last thing the media is going to do is cover a topic like environmental decline in a serious way when investigation into the topic unequivocally shows it is economically driven. It is far more profitable to do a few hit pieces on the topic, maybe some limited coverage which talks about the evils of the corporate world, but no way are we going to get any real in depth investigation that shows what is really driving the declines. No fucking way.
So we get lots of superficial crap, who is having a baby, what country wants to nuke the world (there is always a boogeyman), who is winning at sports, the next great gadget, a shooting or two, the stuff we see and endless supply of. Be damned the future of life on our planet as long as there is a dollar to be made. Just keep shopping.