Monday, February 18, 2008

Thinking and TV



Question: Can you think while watching TV ? Ever since I read Al Gore’s book, An Inconvenient Truth -- including the part on the mental processes while watching TV -- I’ve begun to wonder.

The TV stays on a lot at my house. I won’t make any comment about it. I’ll just state the fact. In that it’s on so much, various and assorted things wind up on the TV that I don’t necessarily watch. Like Lou Dobbs. Now, I’m not really watching mind you -- I’m actually helping prepare dinner -- but it appears Mr. Dobbs is upset about various and assorted things. Recalled beef, unsafe toys and incompetent Federal managers. Yet, two minutes before, he -- like the national news I’d watched just minutes before -- got into the Hillary/Obama war of words.

I’ve watched Mr. Dobbs before. He’s a reasonably intelligent man -- whether you agree with him or not. But, like I said, it makes me wonder. Why didn’t Mr. Dobbs take the five minutes spent on the Hillary/Obama war of words, which is -- let’s face it -- fluff, and instead examine Ms. Clinton’s record on beef inspection ? Or Mr. Obama’s stance on consumer safety ? Or Mr. McCain’s record on government oversight ?

This isn’t really hard to figure out is it ? I use my “FAA History Lessons” as a mechanism to spur my thoughts about current policy for the FAA. Wouldn’t you think somebody in the media would use current events to explore the views of Presidential candidates by looking at their history ? Let’s “stick with what we know” -- aviation.

Do you know what the policies of any of the Presidential candidates are concerning aviation ? Or transportation in general ? I’ve looked for position papers. There might be some out there but I haven’t found any. If you stick a microphone in a candidate’s face and ask, they will just hem-and-haw around the issue. But they all have a record. What is their record on aviation issues ? Do you know ?

Safe food, safe toys, government oversight, safe transportation --these are things that matter. And they are things that Presidents have influence over. Why doesn’t the news media cover these things ? Could it be because of a failed public policy in the use of the public airwaves ? Not airways but airwaves -- radio and TV broadcast frequencies. The President has influence over that too.

The President appoints the commissioners of the FCC. He appoints Federal judges that rule on controversial cases. The President even nominates the Administrator of the FAA. The Senate gets to approve. Or not. Senators have records. And three of them are running for President.

Back over to you Lou.

Don Brown
February 18, 2008

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