Monday, August the 15th, 2005

In response to an earlier comment. Because you might as well reuse what you type.

Let me start by saying the last post was an exaggeration based off of facts I made up. (As I always do, and will proceed to do in the following. It’s more fun that way.) The only opinion (not different from fact, for me, as explained above) I’m trying to put across is that people here, in large proportions, clearly don’t care about anything that happens outside their little bubble. As a result, they lack a clear understanding of most issues.

This is pretty much everybody, I don’t mean some hicks in some small town. I will be having a conversation with a seemingly normal person, and suddenly she’ll refer to communist+dictatorships in the same sentence, for example. As in refer to them believing they are one and the same thing. Even after much persuasion, it is hard to explain one is a kind of economy and the other is a form of governance, they don’t imply each other and they aren’t “inherently evil”. What does the average person know? They know east Europe, and that they were “enemies” and most of them were “commie dictatorships”. This, by the way, is an example of someone who I think has an above average world view.

The root problem? They don’t know because they don’t care, or sometimes even acknowledge the presence of a world outside theirs. What am I basing that on? Pretty much everything I see. It’d be impossible to enumerate them all, so I’ll pick few very different situations:

»News: Earthquake in, say, Somalia. Tens of thousands dead. You know what shows up on the news? “Local newscaster to have third baby”. And, as an after thought, they will (probably) casually mention other horrific events in different parts of the world, as the 43rd item on the list.

»Sport: People in this country play games no one else in any other part of the world cares about, have a local set of leagues, have a “champion”, and go about referring to them as “world champions”. Don’t they understand there is a difference between this country and the world?

»REALITY TV: Even picking a more intelligent show (carefully hand picked—out of context—for effect) like the “Amazing Race”, you have characters who end up in foreign lands and scream at the locals for not understanding English! Sure it’s not representative of everybody, it’s just three or four people. But even one person is one person too many.

In the end, that’s all I am trying to say. I always tack on the “please be good to geeks”, because I am one (and I can correlate anything to people ogling over people other than geeks). Therefore I tried to tie it in by saying, if “you people” took as much time (doing something useful) as you do obsessing over what is happening between beautiful people (say Brad and Jen), the world will be a better place.

Unrelated site update: After years (literally) of sitting in some corner of bits of paper, I’ve uploaded some testimonials.

This is a printer-friendly version of the journal entry “The deal with this country – Reprise” from actuality.log. Visit to read the original entry and follow any responses to it.

4 Responses to “The deal with this country – Reprise”

  1. pUl| says:

    Well articulated.

  2. anita says:

    thanks for clarifying/elaborating. i agree with most of what you’ve said – apathy is a huge problem here. and it doesn’t help that the news/media totally sucks. in some sense, i can even switch around your line and say “they don’t care because they don’t know” – because i feel like a lot of people here would care if they were made more aware of various things going on in the world. those 5-second blurbs on CNN don’t really cut it.

  3. wahgnube says:

    pUl|: Uhmm, thank you, but I personally thought it was pretty poorly put. As has been the general nature of things for a short while now. I go through phases, and this is a lull.

  4. wahgnube says:

    anita: Great, so the basic idea is people need to be (made) more aware of things around the world. My naïve way of ensuring something like this usually involves the following:

    1. Have (somewhat attractive) person (woman) generally hint how cool it is for people to be aware of things.
    2. Random unintelligent-iron-pumping bloke gets wind of this and decides to actually learn stuff.
    3. World is better off.

    Which is why I put things across the way I do. However, having the media be more responsible and informative is definitely another way of going about it.

8,942,120 people conned into wasting their bandwidth.