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Television News, The Stage Play

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There is a bit of magic to it.

Images sent over thousands of miles, well-lit anchors who seem alert to everything of importance taking place in our world, field reporters in far-flung places who pop up and respond instantly to the anchors and deliver close-up accounts of vital events.

And the same important faces of government leaders who, day after day, are struggling to improve our destiny against great odds, against intransigent enemies of progress.

All this is delivered to us in the space of a few minutes, each night, like clockwork.

The fatuous wall-to-wall lies aside, the news presents that little show of magic which the people sorely need. The need never dies. It's eternal.

Substitutes for the real thing are acceptable. The television anchors can be obvious oafs, hucksters, cheap con artists; it doesn't matter.

They can twist the truth, burn it, hide it, step on it, reverse it; it doesn't matter.

If the US government hires, supports, and arms terrorists, the news can claim the government is doing everything possible to fight against terrorism -- including the installation of a massive Surveillance State. The absurd contradictions are simply ignored.

As long as television news gives viewers a small hit of magic, it stays in business. The magic is the stage play, the anchors and reporters are the actors, and the whole show, as it passes into eyes and ears, imparts a dreamlike quality.

Once upon a time, the dream, the magic, the myth were the saddle, reins, and horse of a great personal adventure. But in this modern age, the news stands in as the (brain-addled) knight on his quest for truth and meaning.

In 1927, Carl Jung wrote: "...the dream is the theater where the dreamer is at once scene, actor, prompter, stage manager, author, audience, and critic."

But for most people, that startling analysis was too much. A single human being staging his own reality? Impossible. The dream and the magic must come from somewhere else, from a place and personage stamped with an official authoritative imprimatur.

There must be The Voice and it must be the news, and it must narrate (invent) the dream.

When this happens on a daily basis, most viewers sink so far into the stage play they fully accept its parameters and remain enclosed.

The space, time, and energy of the play form a continuum that is a prison.

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Jon Rappoport has worked as a free-lance investigative reporter for over 30 years. He has written articles on politics, health, media, culture and art for LA Weekly, Spin Magazine, Stern, Village Voice, Nexus, CBS Healthwatch, and other newspapers and magazines in the US and Europe.

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