Existential problemPosted: September 19, 2022
On Meet The Press this week, Chuck and the gang were talking about the Ron DeSantis stunt of sending Venezuelan refugees to Martha’s Vineyard. Chuck pointed out that they were in kind of a bind. This was an obvious stunt, and the point of it was to get people like Chuck Todd to talk about it, instead of say Lindsay Graham’s very unpopular plan for a federal abortion ban. And yet, Chuck said, here we are talking about it. It was as if there were no option: Chuck knew it was a distraction, said it was a distraction, and yet there he was talking about it, lamenting that it was a distraction.
How do we escape this trap? Most people seem to have no problem: they are just not distracted by distractions. They don’t expend energy on this stuff. But that does not appear to be an option for Chuck Todd. One move might be for him (CT) to be a serious enough and strong enough figure to just say (or not say, but show) we’re not paying attention to this. But maybe such a figure could not host Meet The Press. And I shouldn’t be too hard on CT, that’s tough to do. I wouldn’t watch MTP if I didn’t have some affection for Chuck Todd.
Maybe I should just stop watching Meet The Press. But I do find it compelling television: even this absurd dilemma proved thought-provoking. I could conclude that the harm I do by feeding the MtP machine with my attention is worse than the gain from pleasurable feelings of studying its drama and contortions. I’m not there yet. As for the distraction, here I am talking about it.