I have tried to avoid watching the news for many years, because as a rule it's content is biased, depressing and out of any sphere of influence I could have, therefore pointless and a waste of my time. The downside is my my ability converse about current affairs is much reduced.
I recently came across this paragraph by a chap called Matt Stone who hosts an interesting web site called 180 degree health. I thank him for putting it so succinctly.
The news, in any form, is not something I typically follow for good reason. The greatest reason is that my quality of life is greatly diminished by watching the news. It takes my focus away from my tangible reality and shifts it to something peripheral and out of my control. It’s a huge distraction and pollutes my mind, steering it away from what is important to me.
The second reason is that the news, particularly in television format which induces a low-alpha wave state in the brain, lowers my capacity for intelligent thought.
When a news report is constructed, it virtually cannot be created without some kind of conditioned bias. Of course we all know that the media is heavily influenced (okay neutered), by their sponsors and the financial and political interests of the media outlet’s owners. That’s just common sense. But even if this weren’t a factor, conditioning still has dominion over the way news is presented, and how news is presented is everything.
I’m not the kind of guy who is informed about many things. Newscasters, when they present information, are much better informed on most subjects than I am. This is dangerous, because I cannot question, refute, or think critically about the information. This is what cripples intelligent thought, because you naturally proscribe, at least in part, to the information that’s being conveyed to you and how it’s being transmitted.
When it comes to nutrition and health; however, it’s a very different story. There isn’t a newscaster on the face of the planet that is better informed about the many facets of the diet-disease connection than I am. Perhaps the reason I am so skeptical and downright fearful of watching the news, is that when it comes to news reports on subjects that I’m well-informed about, the errors in presentation, flaws in logic, and subtle biases in alignment with mainstream opinion completely control the report itself.