by Patty Templeton

Love it“There’s a hole in the world like a great black pit and the vermin of the world inhabit it,” wrote composer Stephen Sondheim in the musical “Sweeney Todd.” At the top of the hole sits the “privileged few.” How would we know about the best-laid plans of mice, men, and these mega-rich aholes if not for the news?

We live in an era that is increasingly controlled by corporations and billionaires. In 2016, nine people owned the same amount as the 3.6 billion who make up the poorest of humanity.

I love the news, especially the written variety. I wouldn’t know as much about wage gaps, how inflation works, how often police plant evidence even with body cameras, how banks destroyed America’s economy in 2008, or that the hard times that much of America is going through is because of a capitalist democracy pushing toward a socially apathetic oligarchy if it were not for the warriors of this brave new world, journalists.

The world is full of a lot of B & S. Without the news, without journalists sloshing through the sewer for us, kicking crap outta the gutters so everything drains right, we’d all get shit-covered quicker than a president can turn orange.

Patty TempletonHate itI am anxious. There is a dark cloud of doom that follows me everywhere. I have sties forming in my eye that armchair doctors say are caused by stress. I racked my brain: I am not stressed and I have nothing to be anxious about. Oh wait: The news.

As of a week ago, I was what you’d call a compulsive news reader, spending the first hour upon waking reading the New York Times and Washington Post, and then the same drill for an hour or so before going to sleep. The vast majority of my reading was political news, specifically, the national disgrace that is Donald Trump.

I’d made pledges to cut back before but could never kick my habit. And then the anxiety and eye infections. I had no choice. News was affecting my health. I promptly cut my reading in half.

I love the news, but, good god, I really hate it right now.

David Holub


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