So, if the Media 'R Us, why do we distrust them so much?
Because we don't really think they are us--just our whores. We know it isn't love because they don't kiss us on the mouth.
But there are other reasons -- far more complicated. Namely, the Information Age is also the Age of Identity.
The American Public was never one thing. That Melting Pot was a myth. Otherwise, American streets would be packed with only chocolate colored people of indeterminate gender earning exactly the same salaries.
But information technology has not only provided forums for diversity, it has made being "different" a source of pride -- as long as you it earns you membership in a group.
Sigh... now ordinary white people with nothing to distinguish them have to claim to have ADHD or pschopath. At the very least, get tattoos and pierced nipples.
Suddenly we see society-- not even as an Irish stew -- with chunks of this and that simmering in the national broth -- but as a huge food court with all sorts of stuff that we can choose. I am chicken. You are pasta. She is Chinese. He is a potato. Oh, there's sushi.... Vive la difference!]
We eat at the same table. So we can argue about our "choices". That's just a metaphor, of course. And like all metaphors it falls down in some respects.
In reality, we are black, white, brown, Asian, Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Atheist, young, old, gay, straight, transexual, and so on. And while we say we "choose" , we mostly don't --or can't. You don't "choose" to be gay. Or old. Or young. Most people don't choose their religion -- their parents do it for them.
The notion of "choice" has more to do with marketing, which now targets social groups ever more minutely, using Internet preferences and statistics.
|Identity sells, too.|
Marketers know that the consumption patterns of each social group reflect the mentality of that group and the conditions that determine it, both fixed (biological) and dynamic). I
If you are 33 year old Black Jewish Lesbian Dwarf, I have something to sell you, that will reinforce your pride in Blackness, Jewishness, Lesbianism and Dwarfism. You will buy it -- because you are what you are. You really don't have a choice.
So "identity" is ever more specific to every defined social groups. That separates us from all the other sheep.
The Mass Media must appeal in the most general way to our most primitive feelings --the kind of primality that Black Jewish Lesbian Dwarves share with White Racist Paedophiles and Aging Asian Presbyterian Ministers. Patriotism of course. But also fear and hate. The Seven Deadly Sins. The Media reach out to your Id.
Now, I don't want to look at my Id -- my shit --but I do -- secretly. I definitely don't want to look at yours -- which is disgusting. Still, when I watch or read the Media, I more or less have to see yours. Which reminds me what is wrong with mine. How then can I trust the Media ? Those whores! They fuck everybody.
Yet, still I need them.
Ah yes, diversity = cognitive dissonance.