I don’t know about you but I am sick of listening to the media talking 24/7 about the Republican Primaries. It’s not that I mind the candidates or their messages, or that there is so many mistruths being thrown around. I’m tired of the media forcing a consensus and watching the public follow suit. First the media pushed Michele Bachmann on the public and then the POLLS showed her in the lead. Then Herman Cain was pushed to the forefront by the media, and the POLLS followed suit. And so on and so on. It doesn’t make any difference whether it is left leaning or right leaning media, they push forward an agenda of blah, blah. If they keep talking they think we’ll keep listening. And if they keep talking they will influence us , not on the issues but on the blah blah.
In our need to belong to the “right” team we follow popular opinion, no matter how fast it changes. I find this part of the process fascinating. The candidates talk of individual rights but condemn anyone who doesn’t think like them. The audience applauded Jon Huntsman during the debate this morning when he spoke about truth, honesty and leading people to come together, but they also applauded when candidates spoke negatively about The President or other candidates. In their need to be right for the moment the public will follow whatever is the current “on trend” message.
Where does this lead us? We follow whatever the media is leading us. Because the media cranks stories about consumers lining up for sales after Thanksgiving, Christmas retail has become a frenzy of slashed prices. This is good for the consumer as long as they know what they are buying…and sometimes they buy things just cause it’s going to be cheap for an hour or so. How about Fashion? The media dictates the 5 trends for the season, retailers provide it and the consumers are walking around looking like pumpkins whether they look good in orange or not. We follow suit like soldiers marching forward, afraid to stand out or be different.
The internet has not helped this situation. It too works on consensus. The YouTube Videos that everyone likes becomes the most popular. The shopping website that everyone visits become the most used….plus the products have to be something you already know or you won’t buy it. It must be in our DNA that we want to belong or be known for something that everyone else believes. I guess if we just studied religion we can find out how strong that DNA must be.
I thought freedom of choice is the foundation of democracy. In a time where it is “consumer beware”, we have to become experts on everything. We have to be a perfect travel agent if we want to travel in style for less. We have to know about all kinds of cars if we want to buy a great one for less. Same goes for electronics and appliances. So where do we go for information?…The internet, which will give us the best information from a consensus of information. I love how the new “information technology” (think the genius bar) thinks that it can predict what we will like by a consensus of information taken from us, combined with people who might think like us or have our same demographic (feel the sarcasim). Where did all the individuals go?
The new generation is so willing to give up habits and personal information to technology thinking that they will benefit from the consensus of data. Is it destined that we will only move forward when the whole blob of the sameness will move forward with us? Will we create products that ONLY a majority of people will purchase? What happened to products that we don’t even know we want yet? Where’s the room for invention and creativity? Who will be brave enough to support products that don’t fit the mold? Hopefully stores like ours, with customers like ours, will still support new and different products that don’t just fit a consensus!