Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Media (& Prisons)

Thank God the media doesn't run the country: scandal, gossip, exaggeration, hyperbole, excitation, knee jerk response, aggravation, big man syndrome, cynicism, win-lose psychology, … all symptomatic of the general media pathology.

Apparently the media in Norway's a little different, see below (although I doubt "subscriptions" is the real answer), and the prisons are certainly different (quote below is from an interesting article on Norway's prison system, link follows):

"The national media's portrayal of crime also helps foster tolerance for Norway's prison system. Newspapers rely on subscriptions rather than newsstand sales, so they don't depend on sensational headlines. And the writing style is less emotional, more pragmatic, than in other countries. In his book When Children Kill Children: Penal Populism and Political Culture, American criminologist David Green compares the British media's reaction to a murder case in which children tortured and killed a child with a similar case in Norway. The British newspapers, he writes, portrayed the murder as "alarmingly symptomatic of deep-seated moral decline in Britain." The Norwegian papers, however, presented their case as "a tragic one-off, requiring expert intervention to facilitate the speedy reintegration of the boys responsible." In Norway, acts of extreme violence are seen as aberrant events, not symptoms of national decay. "
Sentenced to Serving The Good Life, 12 July 2010, TIME (http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,2000920-1,00.html)


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