One of the things I like about living in Quebec really is
the French culture I see on television. 
I look at English stations, and aside from CBC’s programming and the
evening news that’s local to Montreal, the majority of the shows are made with
American towns and stuff as the setting. 
Not that there’s anything wrong with that—but there are distinct
differences between Montreal and the rest of Canada, not to mention North
America as a whole.  And yet there is
this effort at homogenization or something by constantly enforcing certain
social archetypes about just about everything.

 

So if I turn on TQS or TVQ, I run into Quebec made shows
that really reflect the kind of people I see everyday.  Not everyone has a supermodel body, in fact,
they look quite normal (for all you supermodels, no offense, but I find the
very premise of your very professional existences to be uttlerly useless for
society, if it weren’t bad enough that you’re the bane of social happiness
altogether).  And they talk about normal
things.  They have shows that actually
have some wit to them, and I don’t mean that in a ‘good scriptwriter’ sort of
way—the majority of shows that make up the fame of my favorite French
television stations are all the kinds of shows that involve a host that is genuinely
witty and intelligent.  He’s not just
trading on an authoritive command of camera time—the camera is looking at him
because he is smart.  We are not
pointing the camera at him to make him look smart.

 

Meanwhile, on other stations, I marvel at why “Fear Factor”
isn’t just renamed to “How Low will You Go”, as two females face off at a race
to finish a bowl of 2-pound rat (with the hair and the tail, the whole vermin)
blended in rat broth.

 

Kanye West made a comment a while back about how Bush
doesn’t care about black people. 
Considering the valid point that 9/11’s response time was pretty damn
fast for something that just went wrong, and yet, New Orleans was devastated
despite advance warning and available manpower… well.

 

I’m not focusing on Bush—the thing is that Bush is not
‘simply’ a bad leader.  Nothing is that
simple.  There are reasons why he is the
way he is, he’s been produced that way by his generation—and so too are there
reasons why people vote for him.

 

No, I don’t think it’s reasonable to steer everything to
fingerpoint at Bush—because I think in part that the problem isn’t with the
leaders but with the people who elect such leaders.

 

On another note, I’m not staying this just about the United
States.  I don’t think the leadership in
Canada is all that great either, and again, this is a product of the voters
(and non-voters).

 

But anyway, on to my original point—we are a society that
produces a demand for television shows like Fear Factor, and this kinda
disgusts me.  We are a society that makes
a demand for shows like Mythbusters (totally un-emperical bullshit at times
that takes circumstantial evidence out of context just to say “BUSTED!” not to
mention that they blow budgets on just blowing shit up) and Trading Spaces
(okay, because the quality of our homes is really determined by the correlation
between it’s design and and a few pages from Ikea) and The Bachelor (where one
‘lucky guy’ gets to be the pimp of a dozen bimbos and find true love on
national television).

 

I mean… how can you say that Bush is wrong to be doing
things in Iraq (which is essentially a lack of respect for persons) when we do
the exact same things on a daily basis?

 

Not to defend Bush, mind you—just to point out that
fingerpointing anywhere is never appropriate because if you want to get into
that, I guarentee you don’t have enough fingers for all the pointing that needs
doing.

 

Oh hell, I got totally lost with what I was trying to say
and now I don’t remember.

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