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I agree that media damage is having a serious effect on people's ability to make decisions in their own interests. The John McCain candidacy is more evidence of this than I can contemplate in comfort.

I might go further: instead of media noise, I'd say what we have is a constant stream (or streams) of media signals designed to stimulate our orienting response:

An aspect of responding to environmental stimuli attending in which an organism's initial response to a change or novel stimulus makes the organism more sensitive to the stimulation [...]

Basically attention is usurped by a constant stream of media signals to the extent that there is no cognitive capacity left for perceiving other stimuli.

But of course, IANA behavioral psychologist.

What is interesting in this situation is that the signal stream for Ike has been both broad and lurid: huge winds! 25-foot surge!! run for your lives!!! Responding to the media urge would be the rational thing to do - yet the stay-behinds reject it.

The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman

by dvx (dvx.clt št gmail dotcom) on Sat Sep 13th, 2008 at 12:39:14 PM EST
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