Friday, May 7, 2010

Boycotting the news

I ran into a friend the other day while out for a drink.  She was still buzzing from a great weekend in Barcelona and excited about the eventual arrival of summer. I told her how much I admired her optimist outlook given the news lately, providing a quick review of the world headlines when she asked what I meant. Her smiling face went stoic, she called me depressing and left to find someone more cheerful to talk to.

The moment really crystallized something that I think would make an interesting case study: how much of a person's outlook on life is correlated to their news intake. It seems the less you know or care, the more pleasant the world is. Yes, when it comes to world events at least, ignorance truly is bliss, which I guess makes the opposite true; knowledge is misery. So the question is - what's more important, being knowledgeable or being happy? I think it's time to debookmark the news sites and find other things to read until the weather improves.


  1. Great question, Jeremy. Wish I had an answer. My husband is a massive consumer of political and economic news and sometimes I wonder if it hasn't dented his ability to be content. Then again, I wonder if we have a right to contentment when so much is going wrong around us. My gut tells me we have a duty as citizens of the world to be informed and use that information to make the best decisions possible about how we live our lives, including how we vote, what we buy, where we travel, etc. To be ignorant is to cede what little power we have as individuals, and that's no good. That doesn't mean you can't forget about bad news once in a while and party, party, party. :-)

  2. Hey Michele - I admire your convictions! You're right of course but sometimes I wonder if it's worth it. Like most things in my world - depends on the day;-)