“Dumb as We Wanna Be”

The title of this post is also the title of a column by Tom Friedman in the NYTimes today. But it easily could also be the title of a column by Bob Herbert in the paper as well. Both columns chastise not just the media and politicians but the electorate for falling for yet another around of Fear Politics and/or Economic Pandering to the People’s Pocket books. Media are pouring on Reverend Wright histrionics while John McCain and Hillary Clinton propose a pandering and shortsighted gasoline tax holiday for the summer. Increase demand for gas just when we cannot afford it. And yet again the media, particularly the TV coverage, proves that News broadcasting has decidedly passed over into the Infotainment business competing with WMZ or eHollywood or the Colbert Report for Paparazzi Sensationalist Highlight of the Day.

Rock Bottom Dumb

Meanwhile, the News Media pay even shorter schrift to the fact that the Republicans and the Bush administration are determined to stick by what could only be their coal, oil and gas industry benefactors – and refuse to move towards what will be the biggest market in the world by far in 10 years time – clean, renewable energy. Tax breaks for coal, oil, and gas gets passed but anything for windows and solar power will get the Presidential veto. And in the process, the US is forfeiting a lead in green and renewable energy in scientific innovation, engineering development and usable products. Three cheers for coal, oil, and gas lobby as they argue on Sunday morning “theme” adds that they are working for an “energy revolution”. “We have enough oil and gas to last 60 years for 60 million cars; and after that …. good luck suckers.” So the real benefactors of this shortsightedness¬† are businesses in Europe, Asia, and anybody else with half a wit to sense where the world is going to have to go in the next ten years. And in the process, lobbyists, Republicans, and Infotainment media seem bound and determined to prove that the US electorate can be as “Dumb as We Wann’em To Be”.

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