Are You Addicted To The News?

Politics, sports, business, technology, fashion, GOSSIP, entertainment.  Take your pick.  They all have their way of crawling around in our brains and setting up shop for a good majority of our day.  That is unless you are too busy to even care.  Maybe we should be too busy to even care.

Are you addicted to the news? To be clear, I’m not talking about these subjects in particular, because let’s face it without some kind of outlet beyond WORK most of us would probably go “postal” more often. 

No, what I’m referring to is the “news” about these subjects.  I’m here to explain why I think it might be time to bring back some of the OLD with the NEWS.

Extra! Extra! Read All About It

Back before CNN, FoxNews, and CNBC, good old-fashioned newspapers were the best way to get the latest information to the general public.  Most newspapers would come hot off the presses in the morning.  Since there weren’t any cable news networks or apps to give you the instant blurbs, these papers would often print later editions or “EXTRA” editions.

The Paperboys would yell, “Extra! Extra! read all about it”…followed by a titillating phrase or title of an article to get you interested.  It’s what we would call click-bait today.  And you can’t get enough of it, can you?

So why are we so obsessed with the news?  I mean does it really affect my life if some athlete I don’t even care about was caught using steroids, or some politician was caught lying. 

If you’ve grown up and stopped believing in fairy tales, then chances are you’ve realized how the world really works and with that being said, it would only be news to you if these things were NOT happening.

I could go on and on about how fast-paced the world is now and how we’re learning to live with being inundated with so much information consistently, but this goes beyond that. Even though endless amounts of information is literally in the palm of our hands now, we CHOOSE what to read, watch and listen to. Or do we?

Ask most people and only 1% of the population is wealthy.  Yet, instead of using our extra time to focus on changing that we find ourselves absorbing and regurgitating the personal opinions of talking heads.  Yes, I said “personal opinions”. 

You’re lucky to even remember the actual facts of a story by the time the pretty lady with the nice legs or the distinguished guy with the nice suit finishes telling you what you should believe or think.

By the time the witty writer leads you through his amusement park of puns and metaphors, you’re already high. High on information. Even when it’s “read straight” on air, the news “anchor” can’t complete the exchange without raising an eyebrow, snickering, or carefully placing a throat clearing grunt followed by a sarcastic pause before moving along. Why?

I’m Ready For My Close-Up

Since the birth of reality television, the United States of America has had an infatuation with CELEBRITIES.  How else do you explain Kylie Jenner becoming a billionaire?  Yea teen idols have been around for ages, but a BILLION DOLLARS? Come on pay attention here people.  You have kids committing suicide because of social media

Men and women getting damn near naked on Instagram in order to get likes and comments.  People killed while trying to take selfies!  Now, if you had to categorize; politicians, professional athletes, actors, singers, fashionistas, and technology influencers, what label could you place at the top of the list?

CELEBRITY.  It’s all about wanting to personally be in front of the camera.  If you can’t get the paparazzi to come to you then you become the paparazzi.  If you’re the shy type then you get your fix reading about the “stars” of the day.  Now, add that to the already manufactured and cemented LUST for sex and violence in this country and you have THE BIGGEST MONEY MAKING MANIPULATION DEVICE at your disposal. 

As I often say, “everything in life is sales”.  Quick, juicy, scandalous news makes the big bucks.  Out goes the paper in comes the smartphone alert. And we all know how hard it is not to check our phones every 5 mins. CHA-CHING!

All this so-called news is being passed off to you like your favorite drug or vice. The desired effect is similar; keep you in a state of Euphoria and keep you coming back for more.  Now, this could be said for any “product” which is what news really is, A PRODUCT.

But, to be stuck in a constant state of zombie-like dependence on information that does nothing to enrich your life is not beneficial to you.  The only news you need to know on a daily basis is news that positively affects you or your family/loved.  The rest is a WANT. 

Having a beer or two every other day probably isn’t going to kill you, but drinking two six packs twice a day is probably going to kill you sooner or later.  In other words; Most news preys on our conscious or subconscious appetite for negativity. In moderation, it’s not that bad.  It’s when you abuse a mostly negative news cycle that should worry you.

Sure it’s nice to be in the know so that you can sound smart in front of other people, but think about how much smarter you sound NOT knowing the latest news. So many people today pat themselves on the back as connoisseurs of politics, yet many of them can’t even name the 3 branches of government in this country.

My advice is shut off the crap for a month and read some books, work on your goals or spend more time with your family and friends.  You’ll be delightfully amazed how much better you feel about life. 

You see all this news in small little bites seems harmless, but have you ever tried reading a newspaper from front to back these days and smiled when you closed the covers?

So to the question, “are you addicted to the news?” I think for most people the answer is no. They are instead addicted to CELEBRITY which is now masquerading as news. Now the new question is; does that make them stalkers? 🤔

If you’re having problems with addiction Dennis Marcellino says he can help.  Click here for more info.

[Feature Photo by Keenan Constance on Unsplash]
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