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I don't watch or read the news. If it's not in the news headlines on my yahoo homepage, or on the front page of the paper, I probably don't know about it - well, or used to not know. At my current job my boss blasts Fox News or CNNBC all day long, and constantly feels the need to discuss what's going on. It drives her nuts when someone is clueless about government stuff - I guess it gives her something to do, but it gets old, because frankly, I don't care that much. Unless it's something that I can actually DO something about, I honestly see no need to get worked up over it. Yes, I've got my opinions on some things, and there are times I am interested if I see it as worth my time and effort. I do try to understand enough to have well informed opinions as well, but constantly being bombarded with news - no thanks. Most of it is the same crap, different day anyways, and it's meant to cause you stress (ie get people fired up, worried, scared, etc).

 

I still watch a lot of TV, but it's generally movies or shows I enjoy - Comedy Central and SyFy are the primary channels seen in our house, occasionally I'll watch the Style network. We'd have to be actively in a war for us to have the news on for any length of time, unless there's something specific I want to see, but that's happened I think 2-3 times in the past 6 years.

 

Email and cell phones are my biggest stresses - I feel lost without them, but love being away from them as well!

 

That's what I did. I found myself watching a lot of cable news and reading blogs running up to the election. I also noticed my stress level, irritability, anger, and anxiety had increased. Since the election, I've stopped watching TV news altogether or going to the political blog sites, and hardly ever check news on the internet (check the NYT headlines and Yahoo! headlines, and still check sports news and scores). I basically watch comedy, fiction entertainment, and football on TV. My stress and irritability are noticeably down. I also find listening to calming music like classical or jazz while driving helps my mood in traffic. I live too far away from my work to give up the car, though I'd love too (I HATE driving). Also, I live in Houston, which is NOT a bicycle friendly city. I also got rid of a boat that I owned and have both our cars paid off. I think a diet change is next on the list.

 

Oh, and of course I think maybe the single biggest thing that has helped me in the past year is finally breaking with our fundy church that we were still attending. That was becoming very stressful and depressing.

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I watch TV all the time. I find the internet equally or more distressing. :shrug: But I'm not the type looking to enter the "echo chamber." That doesn't comfort me at all. I know that some people enjoy visiting the same blogs (read "news sites") over and over again simply to reinforce their personal views. I guess if that works for you then go for it. Others do this by turning to Fox News Channel. I see no difference beyond ease of access. mwc

 

 

 

With me I prefer the Internet as at least I can control the content better as if I don't want to be bombarded with information I don't want or need I can easily find another point of view. Also I can engage in conversations with people which I cannot do with television.

 

On the other hand my grandmother watches too much news on TV, and has been so paranoid over every crime there is even though many of the crimes( like abduction of grown women)are not as common as she thinks. I have tried to convince her that a majority of the crimes she fears so much about (abduction, rape, murder) happen between family members, friends, and acquaintances-and not dreaded strangers waiting in a bush ready to pounce on unsuspecting ladies. Even when I was a kid she would grasp onto some news story and scare me about it ( and giving me nightmares for days about abduction,LSD being found on a stamp I got out of a sealed cereal box, bombs in cans ready to be kicked and exploded by a kid) as she thought she was keeping me safe.

 

I also have a portable DVD player and watch a lot of old tv shows and movies as most of the new stuff is so stupid. At this moment I'm slowly building up a DVD collection of Kurt Russell movies, and my mother is begging me to buy more Patrick Swayze movies ( isn't Dirty Dancing enough for her!?) since he passed away.

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Ironically, the reason that I'm getting cable TV for the first time ever this month is because I have moved out of the city into a quieter life in the mountains. There's no antenna reception up here, and I'll feel better with the weather channel and local news warning me that there's about to be 5 feet of snow.

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"Idle hands are the devil's workshop" was a phrase coined in the 12th Century, and it still gets revived in some form every generation.

 

There is nothing inherently wrong with television, cars, microwave ovens, the 40 hour work week or ball point pens. Television can bring us live concerts, informative documentaries, religious programming, Jerry Springer, world events, Glenn Beck or porno. Cars can take you to work on a rainy and cold day, get you to recreational activities, deliver groceries to the needy, transport your injured pet or sick relative to medical help - or it can take you to a crack house if you prefer.

 

A TV, car, cell phone or gun is simply a tool. It's your choice how to use the tool.

Exactly.

 

I've never owned a TV. Probably had access to one throughout most of my life, but the last time I consistently watched anything was during high school. With access to a/my computer and an internet connection, I've never really felt the lack.

 

Conversely, I'd go absolutely bugfuck crazy without a car (or, at least, private motorized transportation of some sort). The light rail out here is okay, but outside of downtown it's essentially limited to a lone north/south corridor down the middle of the valley, and the bus system in SLC sucks giant blue goat testicles. On top of that, the city is spread out enough that biking everywhere simply isn't practical unless one lives within a few miles of where one works*.

 

Beyond the convenience, I just hate being dependent on someone else for transportation; whether that someone else be my parents, my buddies or the UTA. Paying for/maintaining a car can be a hassle, sure (doubly true because I'm so utterly Fail at mechanical aptitude), but, personally, the degree of freedom a car gives me more than makes up for that.

 

*Now I live downtown I probably could cycle to most places I'm interested in going, but both of my jobs are on the other side of the valley, which would mean an hour+ commute to work in optimal conditions on a bicycle.

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Peanuts are a poor analogy. A better one is smoking. It affects different people differently; it can cut some people down in the prime of their life, while others live to be 90. Just because the smoker who lived to be 90 could tolerate cigarettes doesn't mean that cigarettes weren't harmful to them.

I chose peanuts since it reduces the problems of second hand smoke and other things like that. It's a fairly common problem but isolated with relation to the person.

 

mwc

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Ditched mainstream news for independent sources and internationally streamed sources ages ago.

 

Cable news in America is a joke.

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On the other hand my grandmother watches too much news on TV, and has been so paranoid over every crime there is even though many of the crimes( like abduction of grown women)are not as common as she thinks. I have tried to convince her that a majority of the crimes she fears so much about (abduction, rape, murder) happen between family members, friends, and acquaintances-and not dreaded strangers waiting in a bush ready to pounce on unsuspecting ladies. Even when I was a kid she would grasp onto some news story and scare me about it ( and giving me nightmares for days about abduction,LSD being found on a stamp I got out of a sealed cereal box, bombs in cans ready to be kicked and exploded by a kid) as she thought she was keeping me safe.

Our grandma's sound very similar. Mine used to have her antenna TV (nothing else) and radio. She'd listen to the news the whole time she was awake. She'd only turn it off to watch shows like Matlock or Touched by an Angel. If my grandpa had a say he'd watch something other than news (like a western...he liked those other shows so he'd watch them). He'd watch the 6:00 news but that was about it. My grandma was a junkie though. Anything bad was going to happen to me or my family. Now she's dead. Guess I "won."

 

If that old lady had figured out the internet (and I owned an ISP...I could have got her online free) she would have been on every freaky xian conspiracy site that exists. I'm damn lucky she only had the TV news and the local paper.

 

mwc

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PaulQ got it right (at least what my OP point was supposed to be), in that the modern, American Consumption lifestyle is what I'm trying to rid myself of, and TV is pretty big on making you want everything on it. Also how it is designed to suck you in.

 

I still watch lots of TV, but it's all from NetFlix. Documentaries, Star Trek, Weeds, lots of shows. It's the news updates, news shows, commercials, and inane ads for stupid waste of time shows tyhat was driving me mad without me knowing what the cause was.

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my wife replied, "Well, if that's what you really want in life, then I wish you all the best." No sign of jealousy or resentment from my wife who was very sincere. My in-laws worship doctors like they're some kind of god, and so become very angry when they realize that my wife and I hold the same regard for doctors as we do janitors. It's not that we feel that doctors are unimportant; rather, that it doesn't matter what you do in life, as long as you're contributing something that suits you. Janitors perform a job that, if done right, can keep us from seeing the doctor. Both janitors and doctors do a job that contributes to our health. Now my sister-in-law refuses to talk to my wife, because my wife doesn't worship her and her doctor husband. It's the same kind of anger you see when you tell some Christians you don't believe in a god. Tell them that a doctor is human just like the rest of us, and it's blasphemy.

 

This sort of scene is exactly what I have witnessed a few times. These types of people want to feel superior to others by equating what they do with who they are. But who they are involves much more than a profession. They are not quality people. They are resentful when they should be content. Why do they look down on those with lower paying or seemingly unimportant jobs? I think it's because their overinflated egos are trying to hide the fact that they are shitty excuses for human beings.

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