Yesterday's leading distraction: We the people have lots of important matters to get clear about.
Take the Southern border. How many people could explain what the policy was, and how it worked, as of April 1 of this year?
Under the recent "Zero Tolerance" policy, how many kids got placed in those cages? How long were they in those cages, as opposed to more felicitous settings? Most important of all, have you seen any news org attempt to define and report the key question:
Is it possible that the federal government has actually "lost" some kids?
For ourselves, we haven't seen that question defined and reported in an authoritative way. Last Friday night, by way of contrast, we saw Lawrence O'Donnell spend the last half of his program clowning around with TV's Tom Arnold as that basic question went unaddressed.
(The clowning ate 21 minutes of "interview" time, commercial breaks not included.)
We're now a broken, entertainment-drenched, partisan culture in virtually every respect. The basic law of our entertainment-based journalism has become this:
No Distraction (or Bait) Left Behind!
Yesterday, the key, highly entertaining distraction involved Sarah Sanders' visit to the Red Hen. Let us tell you what we saw during two visits to the Washington Post's web site.
The first visit occurred around 3 PM. High up on the site's front page, we encountered these six headline/links. Because we care about your sanity, we aren't providing the links:
Post offerings around 3 PM Eastern:Around 3 PM, the Post was offering six different ways to explore this entertaining event. No distraction had been left behind!
The Fix: Maxine Waters shows why the Sanders-Red Hen story is extremely important
Trump takes aim at Waters after she calls for public harassment of his Cabinet
Analysis: Did restaurant violate Sanders’s rights when it kicked her out?
Did President Trump defame the Red Hen?
Rep. Waters on Trump administration: 'Tell them they’re not welcome'
Virginia restaurant owner takes a stand against Sarah Sanders
We returned to the Post site around 6 PM. We found this new set of offerings, also high up on the site's front page:
Post offerings around 6 PM Eastern:In two visits to the Post site, we were offered ten different ways to kill time and lose ourselves in the excitement of the Red Hen. This represents the basic problem with the 24-hour "news cycle."
No, D.C.’s Red Hen didn’t ask Sarah Huckabee Sanders to leave. The restaurant is still taking heat.
‘NOT THAT RED HEN’: Critics slam distant eateries with similar names and logos
The greatest threat from the Red Hen flare-up has nothing to do with civility
Think before you mob (an op-ed column about the Red Hen)
As of today, we still couldn't answer a lot of questions about policy at the Southern border. But land o' goshen! We've been offered so many ways to entertain ourselves with the incident at the Red Hen!
Why is our culture lying in tatters? We'd list talk radio, partisan cable, partisan Internet and social media as four principal offenders. That said, we'd also list the 24-hour "news cycle."
Round-the-clock "news" leads to round-the-clock bullsh*t. No distraction, no bait left behind!