Let’s face it, everyone needs to save time. We all have extremely busy lives, (well except maybe for Jeb Bush and the cast of Downton Abbey, who officially have nothing to do at all these days). It is just impossible to cram in everything we absolutely need and want to do these days. Proper consideration of the consequences of no Black Oscar winners, for example, takes at least 30 seconds of your day. Likewise, don’t we all need to spend more time updating our facebook profile to include our support of important causes such as pet literacy, the urgent need for mandatory inclusion of kale in fast food salad bars, and safe spaces for students traumatized by college parties featuring tacos? Yes indeedy, we need more time. Oh, probably we have families and jobs which take up gobs of our spare time, also.
Amongst all these competing activities requiring your utmost attention, there are few of us left who still bother to look at newspaper content or TV/Online news. (Note: newspaper readership reaches a new all time low every successive week).
Here at the Billy Bushwood News network, (BBNN), we want to help. Actually, we hope more than twelve people will read these blogs so we can pay for our newspaper subscription, at least for a month or so. We hate having to go to the local library and mooch off the taxpayer’s dime to get our news fix, and most importantly fodder for these columns. So we have graciously studied the problem of how to maximize the impact of your news consumption, enabling you more time to better understand the potential deleterious health effects of being transported magically around the galaxy during Star Trek movies and TV episodes, (apparently of concern to 2 million viewers This surpasses all belief).
The following are news topics getting, in the opinion of the editors here at BBNN, WAY TOO F-ING much attention. Why the networks choose these stories for ad nauseam attention is a puzzle; possibly overexposure to far leftish politics in journalism school causes minor brain damage? In any case, you can safely ignore the following stories:
The Palestinian/Israeli Conflict. These people have been at each others’ throats since the Prophet formed his religion in 400 AD. Hundreds of thousands, possibly millions, have died. Wars, famines, Kibbutzes, men wearing dresses to work, the travesties abound. The one thing that never changes; THEY HATE EACH OTHER AND EACH WANTS TO EVISCERATE THE OTHER. This being said, why bother to read these stories? Nothing changes, you probably don’t know any of the people involved personally. Nothing of substance has changed in 1,600 years, and nothing is likely to change for the next 1,600 (unless the insane Iranians nuke Israel, thereby killing all the Palestinians also with fallout, in which case there is still no story because everyone will have finally gotten their wish. Other than the Iranian nuke story, if it happens, you can very cheerfully ignore all of these stories.
Extreme Weather. Droughts, freezes, rain, hail, floods, or any other weather event that has a potential impact on farmers. No matter what the weather conditions, it apparently is bad for farmers. If the weather is absolutely perfect, the yields will be high. You assume, being a naif, that this is great news for farming conglomerates, which probably generate 80% of all the food that we eat. Archer Daniels Midland, #8 on the largest food producer list, did $81 billion in 2014; probably $40 billion of that was in subsidies from you, me, and the other poor slobs held hostage to the Iowa caucuses and the farming industry. But No! the over abundance of crops lowers their revenue per bushel, or pound, or hectogram, or whatever. So the news station interviews the last small farmer in the Midwest, who tells his/her tale of woe. Naturally, crop subsidies kick in and make him whole and then some, a useful factoid left out of the media stores. You pay higher prices for wonder bread, and the news programs gets a sob story sound bite.
Contrariwise, if the weather is bad, yields fall. The same bottom dweller reporter gets sent out to that last small farmer, who tells the concerned viewer that the yield is bad and it will just kill him/her this year. Of course, crop subsidies again kick in, and you and I get the shaft once more. The small farmer gets on the news, the cub reporter holds onto their phony baloney job, and there is a sound bite. These stories, you can safely gloss over.
All stories regarding the potential winners of the presidential primaries. Over the last twenty years I have noticed that absolutely none of the prognostications made before Super Tuesday amount to a warm bucket of goat shit. Actually, with value as fertilizer, goat shit is WAY more value than any insight that a pundit might offer before anyone starts voting. The following would have been their party’s nominee according to the pundits before the Iowa caucuses:
- Ben Carson
- Howard Dean
- Rudy Guiliani
- Paul Tsongas (remember him?)
- Bill Bradly
- Hillary Clinton
- George Romney
Remember these losers? I bet you only can remember Hillary because she is still infesting presidential politics, and Bill Bradley because he was such an awesome hoops player. Howard Dean you mistakenly associate with sausage, and apt misconception if ever there was one. Don’t read these idiotic stories.
Stories about gun control. Every time there is another mass shooting, there are a slew of stories about the number of people killed by guns, legislation is introduced to eliminate assault rifles, and yahoos on shooting ranges are interviewed about their constitutional rights. We at the BBNN take no official position on the merits of any of this, wanting to get money from everyone. (This is known as editorial cowardice. We plead yellow). However, what we do know is that we have been reading these stories for decades. Nothing happens. You know why? Whether you are for gun rights, or gun control, gun ownership is a potent political issue. Many pundits, (whose ability to understand and predict anything political has already been called into serious question earlier, but I need an authority to end this paragraph,) believe that Gore lost not because of the famous hanging chads, but due to the gun rights voter. Not many politicians outside of hotbeds of duck hunting such as Manhatten, Cambridge, and Berkeley, are willing to risk going down in flames (better metaphor; a hail of bullets) over the issue. While you may feel badly about this, you can now safely use the time you might have spent reading the same article updated for the umpteenth time, to clean your carbuncle, (whatever that is.)
Sports Predictions. For you sports fans, the hours you may be spending reading pre season or pre game predictions can surely be more profitably spent sneaking another peek at the Emily Ratajkowsi Blurred Lines video, (I have been told it is quite, er, stimulating. Purely from a musical, cultural standpoint, mind you). Anyway, there hasn’t been a sportswriter, tout, pundit, or loudmouth who has gotten the World Series teams, or super bowl contenders, or Final Four teams, or any sports prognostication, correct going back to when the first naked Greek threw a javelin in 400 BC. You can, and should, ignore all predictions of game outcomes before the game is played. These now balding and overweight ex jocks don’t have any better idea than you do, who is going to win or by how many points. Why are you watching this useless jock yak or reading the story in your newspaper? You could be debugging your computer, washing the pet weasel, reading up on the latest mysteries of the universe, or taking a nice nap. All are way more worthwhile than reading sports predictions.
Dietary news. The people whose jobs are to conduct research on the health effects of various foods and condiments are still waiting for a piece of research to hold up to subsequent study. You may recall that you were told not to eat/drink eggs, carbs, butter, salt, wine, booze, red meat, and a myriad other foods that you like to eat while watching sports shows on ESPN. Turns out you not only can eat/drink ALL of those, you should at least eat SOME of them, if possibly not until you are so obese that you can’t get out of the Barcalounger. Conclusion, dietary headlines are not worth the hot dog bun they are written on, so have a sensible steak dinner, a glass of wine, and ignore dietary news. It is like the weather; it will just change next week.
There are many, many additional examples of stories that taken as a category, you can forget reading going forward. However, I would guess readership interest is slowly ebbing. Please use a portion of the time you have saved donating to the BBBN journalists retirement fund. The following is a completely fictitious link to donate: