Editorial #75 Is News Useful?
We all try to survive life with a minimum of inconvenience and expense. Our mission in life is to make the world a better place and to teach others how to do the same. To do this we need information to make decisions to better survive this complications of life of ours. Today we are ambushed with information from our surroundings and is expanding at an exponential rate to a point where there is so much, we absorb little or none of it.
At the time of Christ, it was thought to take about 1000 years for the total amount of information in the world to double. The time to double is exponentially increasing with the current rate of information doubling in about 12 months and expected to be about 12 hours by 2025.
We have more information available to us than ever before, but ironically we are becoming a society that knows less useful information than the average person at the time of the civil war. We are now a society filled with useless facts and gossip, with people thinking they can violate the laws of economics, science and physics, and fewer people knowing what those laws are. Our schools indoctrinate our children to complain about any problem they notice, insisting the government fix it instantly, while gradually moving away from the study of the sciences and problem solving.
Social media exacerbates this problem with practically everyone having ability to instantly access and spread any information, regardless of its validity.
There is a popular axiom that is false: “If we don’t learn from history we are bound to repeat it.” This is not true. History is simply a collection of stories that outline mistakes, depravity and dysfunctionality. To study mistakes make as much sense as coach reviewing past super bowls to know how to prepare for an upcoming game. We must only study those things that have worked, not all the things that failed, which is an infinite list. The things that work are in the economics, science and physics books. Education is the art of learning of how to use facts to solve problems and not the study of failed mistakes.
To make the world a better place, we must understand what that means: It means making sure everything we do are: fair, truthful, sustainable and has integrity. These core values are universal and simple, but the news with which we are bombarded seldom gives examples of these attributes. There is little use for that sort of news and it is difficult how see how it can be applies to making the world a better place other than not doing the same thing.
This leads one to ask: Is it really necessary to listen to news? Whenever I listen to news, I hear of all the problems in the world and feel impotent to do anything about it, other than maybe adjust an investment or prepare for a similar disaster.
The news depresses and overwhelms me leading me to think; would it be better to not hear it in the first place? The old saying: “ignorance is bliss” is looking to be more true each day. But to make the world a better place we must understand what is in the world in order to know what to do when we each get the opportunity to do our part to fix it.
This is Keith Kube wishing you the best in making the world a better place.