Monday, December 30, 2013

Final Thoughts before 2014



2013. I’m so over it.

I backed the wrong horse this year. It cost me some ground. But the good news is, I’m back on track, now. I’ve got some big stuff planned, and it’s going to start sooner, rather than later, in 2014. Stick around for it, won’t you?

In other news: Duck Dynasty. Yeah, on second thought, never mind.
No, I've got to get this off my chest, because it's just a perfect example of how we operate these days.
 

I’m sure that most, if not all of the readers of this blog understand that “reality television” is the new oxymoron for the 21st century. Nothing is real on TV. Not the shows, not the news...none of it. And you shouldn’t trust any of it, either. Not when all of broadcasting is owned by vast, multinational corporations who care for nothing except an increase in quarterly earnings. And if you think this whole Duck Dynasty thing is anything other than a fourth quarter cash grab for the stockholders, you’re missing the bigger picture.

This “controversy” was manufactured artificially so as to drive some merchandise sales. That’s it. Push some product. It was a calculated move on the part of A&E, who were (a) with the guy at the time he said what he said, and (b) could have put the kibosh on those comments before they aired...but they didn’t, did they?

Nope. They let them run, knowing full well that FaceBook would erupt in indignation. As if anyone cares what any 65-year old man thinks about 21st century problems. Please. They knew that there would be a swarm of people defending his rights of free speech, and they knew that if they fired the guy, his fanbase would go ballistic.

So, all of that Duck Dynasty merchandise that has been sitting, lagging, in all of the rural stores across the country (like Hastings, the pop cultural mecca for towns with a population of 100,000 or less), all of a sudden becomes a badge of pride. A collectible. Whatever it takes to get it all gone. Last minute stocking stuffers. You decide. But it’s now been re-distributed amongst the fans, who maybe didn’t realize they were supposed to buy that crap in the first place. So, no returns! Numbers are up! Hooray for A&E’s stockholders!

And lo, two days after Christmas, like some kind of miracle, the old man gets his job back. And the clouds part, and the angels sing, and everyone’s made their Christmas bonus. What changed? Other than a lot of money, from your hands to theirs? Nothing. Nada. Zip. Bupkiss. The status quo is back where it belongs. Fans of the show are happy. The people not happy are the folks who weren’t watching Duck Dynasty in the first place. Nothing but gain. Zero downside. And so FaceBook goes back to sleep until the next manufactured gaff or crisis wakes everyone up to cross-post to their entrenched groups.

Another successful scam perpetuated on the American public. Seems like a perfect way to end 2013. Let’s hope we’re all a little smarter next year, okay?

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