Monday, February 7, 2011

Is Egypt a (sh-h!) Wag the Dog Event?


By Kate Collins

I don’t know about you, but I’m really tired of the news being dominated by the turmoil in Egypt. It’s not that I’m unsympathetic with their plight. I was there two years ago and could see that things were very wrong – and I’m not referring to being kidnapped by a crazy camel driver (see my October 2009 blog) or picking up a nasty parasite that took a month to get rid of. I’m referring to garbage piled in the streets and on the sidewalks, even in tourist areas, which I was told was symbolic of what has been happening within their government.

But okay, enough already. Do we have to get scenes from Cairo 24/7? Does it have to be the main story, and practically the ONLY story, on all the news channels, including my morning talk shows?

Whenever I see this much coverage of an event not happening right here in our country, I can’t help but think back to that movie, “Wag the Dog.” Do you remember it? A huge media event was staged to keep the public from focusing on something else that was going on?

I know what’s happening in Egypt isn’t staged, but I keep harking back to the theme of that movie. Why are we being inundated with that news when there’s very little to actually cover? Scenes in the streets – check. More scenes in the street - check. Bor-ing.

Do you agree? Or am I missing something?

17 comments:

Linda said...

I know what you mean but I blame the 24/7 news channels that are always hungry for something... anything...with which they can fill up their time. I just keep telling myself that at least this makes better sense then when they were reporting on Anna Nichole nonstop 24 hours a day. Remember that? I honestly was thinking the world had gone entirely mad back then....24 hours a day coverage on someone I didn't even know existed before...and for the life of me I couldn't figure out why...still can't.

Melanie said...

I agree. They've stopped focusing on our military overseas and we've begun to get into everyone else's business. I'm sympathetic too, but they need to let it go.

Janet C said...

Part of the "problem" is the 24 hour news coverage, but I seem to notice that they seem incapable of covering 2 news stories at once. If you think about it, that is really weird, but watch for it the next time 2 big stories occur.

ev said...

...and in passing news, Cambodia and Thailand lobbed bombs back and forth for the 4th day in a row.

Really?? And this is the first we've heard about it.

I think you are right, they can't cover two important issues with the same degree at once.

Kate Collins said...

Janet, that's a great observation. I wonder why that is.
And argh! Anna Nicole 24/7. Does the media really think we want to know and have repeated every single teensy weensy bit of nothing about these events? 90% of it is old news repeated constantly.
They must think we're drooling idiots.(I may drool occasionally but I'm no idiot).

Rural View said...

I think you're right, but have no fear, very soon now something else will capture media attention and we'll be forced to learn about that 24/7. The hikers' trial is beginning in Iran and there's the did Lindsay Lohan steal the necklace bit. I'm sure it will be Lohan - they just can't help themselves.

Min said...

I bet people who have friends and family in Egypt wouldn't agree with you. Were you watching when one of the tv crews was on a flight to Egypt to cover the events when they met a student who essentially ditched his classes to check on his grandmother who he hadn't heard from for awhile? He asked them for a ride (which they gave, in exchange for filming the experience). They followed him through all of the checkpoints, which had been taken over. He went to his grandmother's building, where he got shouted at by his grandmother's protective neighbours. Once allowed in, one of the neighbours came barging in, wielding a gun.

And, really, I'd rather hear about Egypt, which is a REAL news event than about Lindsay going back to rehab or whether another celebrity couple is divorcing or some such or the impending NFL lockout.

Debra said...

The first time I remember the news covering only one story endlessly was in 1978 or 1979, the cult murders in Guyana. I was in school and living alone in a creepy apartment and they played a loop of those awful pictures over and over. That is when I became a NPR fan. When I moved to NYCity I gave away my tv.
I can no longer process any more news on Egypt. I am just full up on that. My nephew was there last year for a semester abroad, so I have an extra reason to keep listening but I just can't. NPR is playing the BBC broadcast (all Egypt, all the time) on the AM band and I miss my regular shows.
Please NPR and WNYC, stop now.

Lindy said...

I think that this time the media may have their focus on the right spot, and I don't think it is a "Wag the Dog" event. What is happening in Egypt and all the Middle East could have a huge impact on us. But, I'm with you, it's hard to listen to it 24/7.

Aurian said...

I don't watch or listen to much news, as it is often bad or depressing. I listen to the hourly news on my music radio channel, which lasts only a few minutes. And yes, there is more news than what is happening in Egypt, but I do prefer local news. And not about celebrities please.

signlady217 said...

Important, but not all-consuming! Give us some of the good stuff, too. And as for celebrities, right now it's a toss-up who I'm more sick of hearing about, Lindsey or Charlie; they both just need to grow up, get over themselves, and get whatever help they need to straighten up.

Rita B said...

I keep thinking....what are they trying to cover up that's going on here????? Or am I just paranoid? I try not to be but......somedays.

Bella said...

I'm with you there. It's not really news when it is the same thing over and over again.

My family live in Australia and last week there was a cyclone there, and I couldn't find news anywhere in Canada on it. Everywhere was the supposed news about Egypt. It was really disappointing.

Vickie said...

I read your comments earlier today, went down to the break room and...yep...there was a Tweet report from Egypt on Fox News...at work in the daytime, it's all we can have on, so it's all Egypt all the time for now..I wonder what else is going on in the rest of the world?

Shushan said...

I often get that impression when the news channels hyper-focuses on just one or two stories for days on end. You just know there are other important things happening that just aren't being shared.

hatfieldtiffany75 said...

I have heard a few things about some turmoil in Egypt but I didn't know why. I seen some things on facebook today about Egypt; so I decided to search around a bit. I found this website with a bunch of updates about this situation in Egypt. I am still kind of unclear on the reason behind all this but I did see something I found very interesting and good. I seen where President Obama was asked to comment on this situation and if he backed the President and he had no comment but they are strongly monitoring the situation. I found it was the best thing to do considering our country has always jumped to moment to help another country.

Anonymous said...

It's undoubtly a 'Wag the dog' event. Like when the wave hit football stadiums, demonstrations hit Egypt when arranged from the top down. Then a non-people elected ex. intelligence chiefe get put in place, with strong beliefs in Israels ongoing battle against Palestine. Congratulations egypt, congratulations with you 'Freedom'.