Saturday, November 15, 2003

Gore and TV

The link below is from a speech that gore gave in TN about how TV was killing America.

"Our democracy is suffering in an age where the dominant medium is not accessible to the average person, and does not lend itself most readily to the conveyance of complex ideas about self-governance, and instead pushes toward a lowest common denominator"

The statement about TV not being accessible can easily be misunderstood, but what he means is that the average person cannot get their voice heard on television. Now I think that is great, because I only want to hear the best. But the best may or may not show up on TV.

Now the statement that TV does not lend it self to complex ideas about self-governance, I believe also to be false. Pictures are much simpler than words. You can draw a complex graphical shape (such as a fractal) or you could describe it with math. The visual is going to be much easier to understand intuitively. If you don't know what a fractal is here are some pictures.

and here is a mathematical equation to describe one
(z^7 - 1)^7 - 1 = z^49 - 7*z^42 + 21*z^35 - 35*z^28 + 35*z^21 - 21*z^14 + 7*z^7 - 2

See what I mean.

Gore did point out that Americans watch 4 hours of TV a day. His concerns were about how it would affect democracy.

But what he did not realize was that TV is the one thing that can save democracy. It will require some retooling of the sports seasons to make room for a campaign season, and it will require some internet technology which will involve the average watcher (or a low tech phone system where people can vote and ask questions - much like American Idol).

Note: My only conversation about American idol was when a random person at work asked if I had watched it last night,
I said that I don't watch much TV, and the conversation ended with a awkward feeling.

Then the politicians will have to be willing to work at night and will also debate with others about what they believe. This will go on until election day where the people will vote (and since they have been watching from the beginning they feel obligated to vote). Of course, tax payer money will have to be used for the TV time at first, but once people realize that it is a good thing and lots of fun they will watch. Then TV stations will be able to make money from advertisers the good ole fashion American way.

Additionally, you will have to make election day a paid federal holiday where everyone gets off work, to give the entire nation time to vote on issues.

In short a combination of good old fashion TV and a paid day off could really bring up the voting ratings...Eh... I meant voter participation up to record levels.

As a side note: No one heard about the Gores speech because it was not on TV.


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