OK – first of all apologies for the title. It’s just that the trivial background behind this post made me very angry this morning. I may just be having a grump, heading for a cold or suffering from fast-food overdose, but I guess I’m allowed to throw a strop occasionally.
So, what was it that generated the bile? It was the headline on ‘The Sun’ newspaper. Something about ‘2 Brits win Euro Lottery’. Like I said in the title ‘Why should I give a …?’ Genuinely. This matters to the people who won, their families, possibly their communities. It’s not really a matter of national importance worthy of large headlines on the same day that other news stories include:
- The shooting dead at Fort Hood of 13 people and the wounding of 30+ others
- The possibility that all of the new proposals for managing MP’s Expenses will not be introduced
- The UK Government is saying that it’s unlikely that a legally binding climate treaty will be worked out at Copenhagen
- Three ex-Chief of Staffs have criticised Gordon Brown for his support of UK troops.
But what’s more important, according to the tabloid press, is 2 anonymous Brits winning a lottery. I suppose that I should be grateful that it’s not being held up as another great British victory over the perfidious Europeans to match Agincourt, Waterloo or the Battle of Britain!
Unfortunately I expect to see more of this sort of thing as the months unfold this winter. It’s going to be a hard one; we’ll continue supporting a regime as bent as a hairgrip in Afghanistan, we’ll continue being in recession here at home and we’ll no doubt continue witnessing the political establishment carry on trying to worm out of it’s responsibilities. The Media will rise to the occasion with lots of stories like this, a good few about our new (apparent) National Treasure Cheryl Cole and almost certainly a good number of stories like that about Philip Laing and this latest pair of Chav thugs. Oh, and don’t forget The X Factor and the rest of the ‘reality’ shows.
Years ago, I guess we might have considered this to be a modern application of the old Roman method of keeping the Proletarians happy by liberal application of pannen et circuses – bread and circuses, with cheap credit supplying the bread and the media providing the circuses. One thing is definitely certain today – the media is able to provide circus entertainment by the bucket full with reality TV, lottery winners, ‘national treasures’ and a good few examples of throwing folks to the lions.
It’s a shame we haven’t got bread any longer, though – I do wonder how long teh circus will keep the punters distracted when the bills start piling up and the larder starts getting bare.