Feeds

Sudden outbreak of democracy baffles US pundits

That didn't last long

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Dumb and dumber

Was this a conspiracy to keep Americans from seeing the truth? I don't think so, but it is a watershed moment that exposes the media and political elites. These are people who went to college together, and who share the same sense of importance and entitlement. In the memorable words of the BBC's Adam Curtis, neither class knows what it's doing any more, "and they know that they don't know".

Both also have a close relationship to marketing, which claims it has a unique and almost alchemical ability to help politicians "reach" the public. In actual fact, it does something far much more useful for the politicians, by making people a distant, safe, and manageable entity. Politicians hate democracy and the nasty surprises it brings, and marketing promises to disarm the threat. With "microtrends," people's true intentions can be managed into something that can be addressed with a soundbite, to be mollified with an earmark.

It's a truism that when someone claims an expertise on niche marketing - they really don't have a clue about the world. Finding refuge in atomicity, they've simply given up trying to describe the bigger picture. It's a cowardly choice.

The media's role is simply one of providing comfort and propaganda. Tremors in the micro niches are reported in great detail. But when a political earthquake takes place, the media can't even recognise it. It's literally beyond description - the words aren't in their vocabulary.

The result has left us disenfranchised. The same comforting propaganda that reduces people to a convenient aggregation of demographic labels, is quite useless at divining their intentions, when they are so forcefully expressed.

But clearly, now, the era where politicians, journalist and political marketing experts propped each other up is over, and the internet has helped enormously to destroy their power. The micro-marketing is now junk; the court journalism is superfluous, and deep alliances that the elites tell us are unthinkable and impossible( such as between libertarians and parts of the left) will surely emerge.

As I write, however, the Bailout that Americans don't want is returning, this time weighed down with pork barrel sweeteners for everyone from NASCAR track owners to environmentalists. A few minutes ago, it passed: so 21st Century America's brush with democracy may have been a brief experiment.

But wasn't it fun while it lasted? ®

Thanks for your comments - mail 'em in here.

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?
Compulsory code schools, luvvies love it, but what about Maths and Physics?
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Yes, yes, Steve Jobs. Look what I'VE done for you lately – Tim Cook
New iPhone biz baron points to Apple's (his) greatest successes
Lords take revenge on REVENGE PORN publishers
Jilted Johns and Jennies with busy fingers face two years inside
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Edward who? GCHQ boss dodges Snowden topic during last speech
UK spies would rather 'walk' than do 'mass surveillance'
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.