Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Short Term Memory

     I just moved to a new house this past weekend. It's a lot closer to work, which was the major attraction for my wife and me. In fact, commute time was one of the prime impetuses for moving in the first place.
     So in order to take advantage of this (and because I am now house-rich and cash-poor), I went home for lunch yesterday. And as I was sitting in my recliner eating leftovers and watching TV, I heard a report on CNN that said the gas prices had dropped 6 whole cents over the past week. They then added the commentary that we shouldn't expect to enjoy these "great low prices" for too long, since oil is poised to go up.
     Yesterday, according to atlantagasprices.com, the average gas price in Atlanta was $2.08 and the average gas price in the US was $2.22. Now, granted, this is a whole lot lower than in the aftermath of Katrina, when gas prices soared to $3.10. But that was only 5 months ago. Until April of 2005, US gas prices were nowhere near $2.22 a gallon. Three years ago, they were in the $1.50's.
     I understand the newscasters are adjusting to the new reality, and their greater point is that gas prices will only go up, an opinion I wholeheartedly agree with. However, to even suggest that we're experiencing low prices means that:
A) The newscasters really can't remember anything earlier than last September
B) The newscasters don't want you to think about the fact that you're now paying almost double for gas what you paid only a few years ago and throughout the 90's
C) Someone from the White House hypnotized the production staff of CNN to help get Americans to fell good about paying over $2 per gallon for gasoline*
D) All of the above

     Incidentally, it's this same short-term memory that causes Americans to forget that Iraq had no part in the 9/11 attacks, that Palestinians are not innocent bystanders in some Israeli tyranny, that oil shortages can cause real pain ala 1979 (although we're starting to remember that one). I know the media doesn't want to be seen as negative, especially since the Republican mouthpiece Fox accuses all other media as being anti-Bush. But Americans do quite well remembering good things and even deluding themselves into remembering bad things as good (1950's - otherwise know as Republican "good old days"). If the news is going to be complicit in asking us to forget, we're closer to 1984 than many people realize.


Sylvana said...

No! The commercial says that Iraq bombed the Twin Towers! If it weren't true, it wouldn't be in a commercial!

But seriously, it all starts with the school system dumbing down our kids. Or is it the media? Eh, samey-same. When you have corporations practically owning schools, what's the diff?

Anonymous said...

Actually Businesses do own schools...The Leona Group owns a string of charter schools in Indiana, Michigan, Iowa and Arizona. They will be the entire school system for Bullhead City Arizona...an entire school system for profit...can you believe it!