Is it all spiralling out of control?

Interesting. Thanks for sharing.

I think more people are of the moderate mindset than what is represented in our government, creating a larger divide between the parties.

The extremes are what we constantly have pushed down our throats by media and politicians. The differences keep the power and attention on both of these groups.

This is the big question. What can we do? Its the squeaky wheel that gets the grease.

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I think of this often. But not just in terms of human happiness. But also the way that the information has been presented as fact and how propaganda will have played out in the everyday decision making process for the average individual.

This is true. It’s because of the primary process. More people need to vote in the primaries! They are dominated by fringe groups, so by the time we get to the general, we are left with two extreme choices and have to choose the “lesser of two evils.” If more of us voted in the primaries, we would get moderate candidates (as I would consider Biden to be, btw) more often.

I like BBC World News. It’s left leaning but not U.S. left, so the bias is easier to spot. Much more focus on news, and much more well rounded, with stories from Asia, Africa, and Europe in addition to the Americas.

(I’m curious what the Brits among us think of that opinion.)


I’m on the side of if people can’t make the right choice then government is forced to protect those that cannot protect themselves such as those with medical conditions and with wearing a mask it’s not just self protection but societal protection. Not only concerning physical health but also financial stability. So long as people keep spreading this disease we cannot fully function economically either. However, I understand the argument but what about our “freedom”? I get why that argument is important to make. It’s important we protect our freedom from overreach. For example, this same argument was used to start tapping phones, etc. after 9/11 under the guise we give up our freedom for safety from terrorists. What makes it okay in one situation and not another. Because to me there is a differences in these two scenarios. It’s important we keep discussion open for each circumstance where freedom and safety stand opposed and understand the pros and cons of each choice before we give up freedom.


The BBC is dead to me.

Well, not completely dead. I don’t watch BBC TV news at all now, nor any of their news-related broadcasts. I do listen to BBC radio news.

The reason is the thing that has destroyed everything in the UK — Brexit. Those opposed to Brexit believe the BBC’s coverage was biased in favour of it and that the BBC actually enabled it by providing a platform to its founders and adherents. Nigel Farage, for example, was on the BBC far more often than his status as a man who failed nine (?) times to be elected to the UK parliament.

Like many broadcasters the BBC has become obsessed with ratings. It has no need to do so because it is funded by a (virtually) compulsory tax on television watching. In particular, its current affairs broadcasting formed the destructive view that balance means giving both sides of the argument equal airtime. 97% of scientists believe in man-made climate change, but the BBC gave the 3% who don’t 50% of the airtime, because that’s “balance”. This was good for ratings because it meant lots of people shouting at each other.

The BBC does some decent quiz shows — on TV and radio — and occasionally some very good drama. But its current affairs output no longer has any credibility in my view. And the BBC hasn’t produced any decent comedy in about twenty years.

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I don’t know why didn’t expect such a passionate response from you but that’s on me! :joy:

That’s an interesting perspective considering my experience with BBC World News (which is not the same as BBC News but I assume similar) is that it is among the fairest yet more left-leaning of those available in the U.S. Not partisan like MSNBC but certainly pro-science and fact-focused as opposed to being primarily editorial.

Well, that’s a very different thing from the TV. As I said, I do still listen to BBC radio news. It’s the TV that’s dead to me, really.

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Oh, wait. I’m assuming you mean the World Service. It occurs to me you may be referring to a TV news broadcast on the international version of the BBC. That would be different from their domestic coverage, which is definitely populist and, arguably, biased.

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Yes this is what I’m referring to. It’s an international syndication with foreign-based bureaus. The version in the U.S. primarily broadcasts from Washington, D.C. (with British anchors).

The World Service is a different operation altogether and is, I think, respected the world over.


A little, but from my POV not a whole lot.

Probably! Most people do over time.

More than likely.

I’m going to present an opposing opinion. I don’t think that the US as a whole has changed that much. And while things are unsettled for the time being, I don’t think they’re spiraling out of control. Yet. Admittedly, this is mostly based on my own life, so there’s definitely some sampling bias going on here :slight_smile:

I do think that we have become more polarized politically speaking, and that more people believe things that aren’t true which is a contributing factor to the aforementioned polarization. But most people’s personalities / characters have not altered, and the experience of visiting any particular city post-pandemic is unlikely to be different from, say, a decade ago. Well, unless it’s the site of a major protest or something. As long as one avoids talking politics, I don’t think you would notice a the change here.

I do think that the current leadership has normalized hate in various forms, particularly xenophobia, and that has emboldened people who already leaned in that direction to come forth and say out loud what they used to only think inside their heads. And also to take actions that they otherwise may not have. That being said, I think that those people are a vocal minority that has always been around. The KKK has been around since the 1800s, for example. They just have more “effective” leadership at the moment leading them to lash out, both vocally and with actions. Hopefully when we have a leader who is more focused on bringing people together, people fueled by hate and anger will become less vocal and take fewer actions.

But the whole covid thing? With people not believing or listening to the science? I am sad to say that is nothing new. Look at climate change. We have a history in this country of not believing in science when it tells us something that we don’t want to hear. Either denying it outright or pretending that things aren’t as bad as the science tells us.

Another factor to consider is that the US is a big country, and just because you can find crazy things happening in a certain pocket it doesn’t necessarily mean that the country as a whole is that way. I have a friend from Australia who came to live in the US for about a year a few years back. She had noted that she was fearful of the level of violence in the US based on what she heard in the media. And while she was here, she did not experience that at all. (Admittedly, it was partly because she was staying in a decent apartment in a nice town, not in the projects of an inner city.) What the media focuses on tends to be those incidents that are not the norm, giving a skewed perspective of what life is like and what is happening in most places.

This drives me bonkers. In my opinion, part of the goal of accurate reporting should be to leave people with a sense of what the majority view is. If you’re giving equal time to both sides, then you’re implying that both are equally prevalent views.


Unfortunately most of the goal of reporting for several decades has been ratings and advertising. Again, not completely.

I’ve noticed one other thing: the folks that share hate related stuff on social media often don’t talk that way in person. They’re much more moderate, compassionate and reasonable. Remember the silent majority that used to be talked about, politically? I think we still have a huge percentage that don’t fuss. We also have a lot of folks who are very nice but perhaps illogical who focus on one thing about a candidate or program without looking at the whole picture. Along the lines of: that’s a really cute puppy, such pretty eyes and lovely markings and so playful and friendly but it’s got a crook in it’s tail and I don’t crooked tails. So no to that puppy.

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I hear you. I think the combination of suffering related to the novel coronavirus crisis–mental, physical, economic–and the fallout from an exhausting political cycle, has exacerbated the tendency to feel like things are spiraling out of control. Root causes aside, people crave stability and healthy economies require it; it will take (likely a lot of) time, trial and error, and difficult conversation, but there is a chance it can get better.

There are legitimate national security concerns right now, particularly fringe group domestic terrorism and mass shootings, but the chance of encountering either is very, very small. It’s concerning that the current administration is actively undermining the transition process, but rest assured there are competent people constantly working to identify and minimize threats. Contracting Covid is undoubtedly more of a risk in the US than almost anywhere else, unfortunately, but the risk will eventually pass, though likely still many months from now.

I take issue less with sensational media and social media and more with the long lived anti-intellectual sentiment in the US. Critical thinking skill development has not been prioritized in the educational system save for liberal arts and public universities, both of which are inaccessible for the vast majority. A tendency toward identifying fact, a desire to gather information on both sides, and the ability to process these facts and information to determine one’s own conclusion could surely contribute to the muting of sensationalism by removing its audience.


There are labels on unreliable news on some of the major social networking sites. It just led to a huge exodus, after the election, to sites that don’t fact check or censor anything. Many people I know were part of that exodus, although I see that none of them have actually canceled their Facebook account just yet. One of them already canceled her acct at a site she just started going to b/c “completely uncensored” also means more adult content than she had expected.


Overall I think anyone coming here for a vacation for a week or two is most likely going to be safe. Especially to Orlando, which caters to tourists so much. People at WDW are going to be much more focused on their own trip to WDW than they are on who won the election, for example.

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:laughing::rofl::laughing: Thanks for the chuckle!

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Don’t make me post that photograph of someone’s t-shirt again that I took in what I thought was the safety of the dessert party viewing area for HEA.



Just goes to show that everyone wants a little regulation in their lives! Just a question of what to regulate and how much.


I’m a high school teacher and we just started testing everyone in our county schools and basically have zero transmission after 10 weeks of in person classes. If there is transmission in the schools its because they aren’t doing the right things.

Schools and Disney have been my best evidence that masks are distancing in tandem work.