OPINION – It’s both a curse and a blessing to work within the media.
The downside is the daily exposure to whatever is currently dominating the news cycle. The upside is the opportunity to see and recognize firsthand the clear patterns of distraction that develop.
For instance, not a day goes by without the major media hyperfocusing on the question of who will be the next president of the United States. No national newscast is complete without some story regarding election 2016.
American voters are constantly reminded that they must continue to clap their hands and believe in Tinker Bell through continued participation in the system.
The likelihood of any particular candidate improving the quality of their lives in a measurable way is far from assured. Yet the public is continually fed a narrative that treats the presidential race as “the” most important story of our time.
It’s not like the outcome of this particular election is going to be any different from the last few. No matter who gets elected, government will win.
Thomas Pynchon stated the obvious:
If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don’t have to worry about answers.
The point here isn’t that the presidential election is a nonstory. It’s that other relevant stories are either minimized or ignored to keep our attention focused on political intrigue.
How many Americans, for example, are aware of what is happening in Venezuela right now?
The food riots and economic breakdown taking place in that beleaguered nation are a wake-up call to anyone who is paying attention. With hyperinflation and food supplies nearly depleted, nearly 30 million Venezuelans are becoming desperate.
One of the key lessons for those with eyes to see is the importance of being able to produce and store essentials for times of hardship. Right now, cats, dogs and pigeons are all being killed and eaten by people who cannot obtain food any other way.
There is also a clear lesson regarding the wisdom of allowing a government to assume enough power that it legally prevents its citizens from being self-reliant.
Venezuela is not the only nation that is experiencing the painful economic reckoning that comes from the unsustainable combination of corrupt government and uncontrolled spending.
Could the U.S. be on a similar collision course with economic reality? Think about how you’d answer that question.
If you really don’t understand the basics of economic or monetary policy, what would you be willing to do to gain understanding?
Waiting for the mass media to give you the necessary information to give an informed answer isn’t going to happen. Our major news organizations today exist to entertain not to inform.
A person who is serious about understanding the serious issues before us is going to have to invest some personal effort to become self-educated.
This is what my friend Albert did during the economic crisis that hit the U.S. in 2007. He recognized that his understanding of economics and monetary policy were lacking and chose to do something about it.
He became a student of economics and sought out as many original sources as possible. This required many hours of personal study and research that continue to this day.
More importantly, it required a willingness to adjust his thinking whenever he encountered new truth. Over the past few years, Albert has become highly conversant in geopolitics, banking and finance, as well as economic and monetary policy.
He saw clearly that the U.S., much like other nations that have suffered extreme economic hardship, is on a similar unsustainable course.
The more vulnerable nations are falling first, but our turn is coming.
Among the critical needs that my friend came to recognize was the impact that economic collapses can have on a nation’s food supply. To this end, Albert became a dedicated student of gardening and greenhouse design.
His learning was not simply theoretical; it was applied, tested and proven.
He learned how to grow food year round and has spent a great deal of time teaching these essential skills to the people around him.
His reasoning was that while we can’t do much about a dying economy in our little corner of Southern Utah, hungry people will become a very real concern.
The more people who are willing to learn to produce a majority of their own food, the better off our community will be.
If you happen to attend the Iron County Preparedness Expo on Saturday, June 4, you’ll have a chance to shake Albert’s hand.
Learning what we need to know and taking action wherever possible is preferable to choosing to live in ignorance or fear.
Bryan Hyde is a news commentator, radio host and opinion columnist in Southern Utah. The opinions stated in this article are his and not representative of St. George News.
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