You have to wonder what kind of price we are paying for the ability to read or hear about the news minutes after it happens. Perhaps even seconds after it happens or even watch as it happens in some cases.
Back in the day, and that could be as recently as the 1980's to an extent, ignorance quite possibly may have been bliss. We are now in what is sometimes called "the information age" and many of the little details that would have never even been a blip on the radar 20 or more years ago is now front page news. And news organizations are trying their best to "one-up" the competition with no subject being taboo.
Here in the United States, the media likes nothing more than to dig up dirt on U. S. officials and their actions. Military or otherwise. Any little thing that comes out of a congressman's mouth gets out into the public. And now that we have these wonderful weblogs at our disposal, we don't have to wait for Tom Brokaw or Dan Rather to tell us what the news is at 5:30 on the nightly world news. Citizen journalism is now a buzz word. We can break the news ourselves if we like.
This really affects politics more than anything, but that's a big deal right now. When we have presidential elections that last weeks because they are so close that we have to recount the votes, that's stuff that can change the world.
But the fact of the matter is that we used to not hear about half of the things our government is doing and now you have to wonder about what it is that we don't actually get to hear about now. Back in the day we were all happy and ignorant of the craziness that was going on in the country and the world. Now Piccu, myself and all of our friends talk about politics and news in the world all of the time.
It used to be that during a war, we would hear about what happened during a large battle and perhaps a rough count of any casualties. Now we know how many of the enemy were killed and the name, rank, hometown and names and ages of all family members of each American soldier that dies each day. And that right there can change the way the public views a war.
Reading that two American soldiers were killed during combat can isn't nearly as painful as hearing that John Doe from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, father of two was killed along with Jane Doe of Fort Campbell, Ky. Or worse, having internet video of terrorists severing the head of an American soldier.
The news media sometimes used to somewhat protect the public from things that it should see or read. Now if it bleeds it leads as the saying goes.
You have to wonder if things really went smoothly before the internet and several 24 hour news stations on cable TV. Before the general public had too much "need to know" information.
But then again, those of us who keep up with the news chastise those that do not and chose to be ignorant.
I guess the question is, does the general public really need to have access to all of the information that is available in this information age?