Friday, October 01, 2004

My advertised innocence R.I.P.

The past week has been odd - alternatingly depressing and joyous as pulses of culture veer past me with seemingly more lucidation than before I went away. Take adverts, for example. These ubiquitous moments of comic and artistic showcasing have now been stripped bare and rendered for what they really are, after having experienced such locations as -shock- metro stations that hadn't yet been surrendered to the marketer's wet dream. Remember, perhaps, that to realise the true embodiment of something you see every day, simply live without it for at least 2 weeks. You too can silently scream in wonder at the sheer absurdity of 99.5% of the marketing dross that hits our optics, merely by first coming to understand just how unnecessary (at least, not to the extreme portrayed so lovingly) most products are. Join me on my "It's just a fucking toothbrush!" campaign. Of death.

[sidelink: Adbusters]

More on advertising and its insidious effect on every day life soon, I hope. Me have rant stored...

As a side effect of having been de-sensitised, I think I'm also becoming much less accepting, in a similar way, of various other messages and their made-up PR-spun delivery boys and girls - even less so than previously, that is. It's as if the ability to sneer completely at over-hyped, gee-whiz products has knocked-on to allow itself to be applied to over-hyped, gee-whiz politoshians, germalists and excretionary businessmen alike. In many ways, this isn't surprising - they do share a very core familial (almost in-bred) set of genes, resulting in a very loud, very shouty phenotype that manages to hold unbelievably little "real" substance. They are all as extremely expensive (in terms of attention), extremely fluffy vases, that are so inordinately dense as to be of little practical purpose at all.

Here is another example. Perhaps (or perhaps not?) the Iraqi PM's speech was mostly written by the White House in order to give a favourable view of the position in Iraq. Whether it's true or not, the fact of the matter is that it's actually very easy to work out if people are interested in acting with your interests at heart. To wit:

  1. What they do genuinely makes sense to you.

  2. They don't keep telling you that it's for your interests.

I would be a fool if I continued to believe that the majority (and, by utilitarian extension, all?) of information presented to me on a daily basis from such quarters as discussed above was actually of any practical use. In an act of final and exhuberant gross-over-simplification, I hereby claim that Companies act solely in their own interests and are therefore to be shunned, the major-player politicians only seek power to further their own viewpoint (whatever it may be) and so should be untrusted for holding a hidden agenda despite promoting democracy et al, and all news media is more-than-acceptably biased and so worthless.

Something in me is irritated by the constant distractions pushed into my face by the advertisers, the scaremongerers and the heart-pluckers. Facts of the world will filter into me naturally, and I will hopefully have more time to think my own and others' thoughts without fear of having dredged up some co-sponsored, bent approximation of reasoned instinct. I wish to exercise my freedom of thought again.

Meanwhile, look at the pretty space balloons.

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