I wonder how long it took the folks at Fox News or CNN to come up with a logo and theme music for the latest round of alleged criminal exploits of OJ Simpson? Probably faster than you can say "amusing ourselves to death".
According to Bob Cesca at The Huffington Post, Fox News had an over sized "FOX News Alert" logo on the screen that was a ubiquitous entity throughout the day this story broke, making it virtually "unwatchable". CNN's Nancy Grace and her rotating band of "experts" and pop psychologists must have already tried and convicted him within hours, based on that "guilty look" on his face.
Cesca's article is great, putting the "breaking" OJ news in the context of another, less significant story that was released that day; that record amounts of sea ice loss has opened up the Northwest Passage sooner than expected. He playfully asserts that perhaps if OJ was had stolen the Arctic ice, than maybe there would have been some better coverage of this non-event.
I for one am glad that the alleged criminal exploits of Mr. Simpson are framed as "breaking news", as this must mean that crime in general has dropped dramatically, and therefore this anomalous event warrants such intense scrutiny. I mean, it's not like there are thousands of crimes being committed elsewhere on a daily basis by any number of anonymous people.
Please tell me this is so, as I am craving some hope and I am still hiding my head in the sand from the increasingly depressing situation in Iraq. If you are not sure what I am referring to, its the type of news the networks are occasionally obliged to report on in between the latest celebrity mishap du jour. In many ways I wish Neil Postman were still around. In light of OJ trumping the arctic sea ice story he could pen an update to his classic book, titling it "Amusing Ourselves Into Extinction".
I knew there was a reason that my TV has been off lately. Long live the Blogosphere! At least there we are engaged in some meaningful dialogue, with minimal commercial interruption. Even better, I can create my own theme music!