How logical are you really?
The illogical habit of most logical people is to watch the news and focus on things that don’t help them, and maybe even hurt them.
We live in a world where “information” and “reality” seem instantaneous.
When “something happens” it is everywhere in the “blink of an eye”.
When I ask people about this, they tell me it gives them a “realistic” perspective of the world.
BUT, does it really?
So, let’s start with a small, simple question: What is reality?
I submit that reality is not the myopic focus of a narrow view point into an isolated moment in time that present a totally unrealistic and distorted view point.
There is a term in the law, which I believe also appears in psychology and sociology: “fact stacking”.
Fact stacking is a process by which a person lists limited and specific facts about something to lead someone else to a conclusion.
For example, let’s fact stack some presidents.
For those that don’t like Bill Clinton, here is a simple way to “logically” prove your point:
- He admitted to an affair while in the White House.
- The White House is one of the most sacred buildings in America.
- Clinton disgraced the White House, America and the Office of the President.
- Clinton then had the audacity to go on television and say, “I did not have sexual relations with that woman”.
- Clinton not only cheated on his wife, disgraced the White House and disgraced the presidency; he then had the shocking audacity and complete lack of character or morality to LIE to our entire nation and embarrass us in front of the world.
- Then, instead of saving the nation from further embarrassment on the world stage, Clinton refused to resign and dragged the nation through prolonged media coverage and impeachment hearings.
- And, this vile, morally depraved man convinced his opportunist wife to stay with him in a marriage of convenience and political business partnership.
- Therefore, Bill Clinton, a selfish liar, cheater, political operator and fraud is the worst president in American History.
Well, okay then.
Sounds like he’s a really bad guy; and that was a piece I heard this morning on Fox News (just kidding).
Let’s take another look at President Clinton though. This time, let’s compare him to President Bush, as potentially seen on MSNBC (again, not really):
Bill Clinton came from nothing and lived the American dream.
George Bush was born into insane money and privilege.
President Clinton was raised by a single mom, excelled at every level of schooling and was truly a remarkable self made man.
George Bush’s father was President of the United States and basically gave him a major league baseball team. Oh, and his academic record was less than impressive, but he got a pass into the right schools because of his name.
President Clinton won one of the most improbable elections for president in United State history.
As for Bush, how could the son of a president not become president?
President Clinton took on a level of debt that many scholars believed could never be paid off and balanced a budget that no one ever thought could be balanced.
Bush, the money guy, ran up debt that was beyond anything our nation has ever seen. We are still reeling from his financial mismanagement.
President Clinton protected our American soil from any foreign terrorist attacks.
Bush allowed 9-11 to happen.
President Clinton kept our foreign relations in a generally healthy place and did not get us into any wars.
Bush, hated by most other leaders around the world, dragged us into an unnecessary war based upon evidence that never existed, which was a horrendous fraud perpetrated on the American people, and worse, the soldiers that gave their lives.
Therefore, there is no question that President Clinton was an infinitely better president than that Bush guy.
If all you hear are the facts you’re given, than convincing you of any “reality” is very simple.
I submit reality is a bit more complex than that.
I also submit, that depending upon who you like, you will make your logical argument by emotionally deleting facts to make your case during your next political discussion.
This is why I think watching the news is a terribly bad idea.
The news does not give you “reality” about the world in which you live.
It is a lot like gossip in the office or around the school yard.
The news gives you information that caters to people’s interest in negativity and drama.
The news is the news because it is what the majority of people like to watch.
That, however, doesn’t make it the news.
If a shark attacks someone, it will be all over the local news.
If a brutal teen age beating occurs in an affluent neighborhood, it will also be everywhere in “the news”.
If the same brutal beating occurs in Newark, New Jersey, however, it will probably not be mentioned on the news.
Why doesn’t the news tell stories every day about generous donations that people make?
Why aren’t there stories about people succeeding in their work or life and overcoming great odds on the nightly news?
Why doesn’t every local news show highlight the 50th wedding anniversary of successful marriages?
I’m not blaming anyone by the way.
I’m simply saying that I don’t believe the news IS the news.
At least it is not the news that will help people in their lives the way it could or should.
What does that mean?
Well, how does it help people to know about a shark attack, a beating, or a political scandal?
One might argue that this makes us informed.
I ask how does this information make our lives better?
More people die from allergic reactions to bee stings than shark attacks.
So, how does dramatizing the sad accident that devastated a family help anyone else?
Beatings and murders happen. Are we not going to leave our home because a horrible incident of domestic violence occurred and someone was tragically killed?
Is this going to make our own day better?
It might make us appreciate our life more if we heard of a sad story once in a while.
If we watch the news, though, then we become totally accustomed to, and quite possibly numb to, the horrors that the worst and darkest aspects of life can bring.
What to me is even crazier is watching all day news channels that do nothing but bring this hyper focus on negativity to you 24-7.
I find it astonishing that brilliant Americans will watch hours of a tragedy and keep reading the “breaking news” banners with the tenth regurgitation of tragic news in a half an hour.
This topic is far more than one blog can cover. In fact, it will be an aspect to my book: “Why Not”, which will be out in 2015.
The point though is this: if you are watching the news regularly, or getting news feeds from different sites to your phone, are you really logical in your decision to do this to yourself?
Is being this “informed” helping make you happier, more successful and more at peace?
In fact, is it helping you or those around you in any way at all?
Or, is your behavior something quite different. Maybe, it is purely an emotional outlet. Maybe watching the news is an escape.
Is it possible that the escape, which makes you feel better about your life because at least you’re not being eaten by a shark or going to prison, is really completely illogical and totally emotionally based?
AND, maybe it’s not “empty calories”.
What if it is a part of your living in a pattern of thinking and behavior that limits your positive energy and that positive energy which is limited is the source of you creating a life and success and results that now seems “unrealistic” and “illogical”.
What if, I playfully and lovingly ask you, you only thought positive and solution driven thoughts all day every day for a year?
Would your thoughts, moods and actions be different than what they were in the past month?
So who is really is logical and realistic and who is emotional and a dreamer?
It is a far broader question than this blog can handle.
I hope it makes you think a bit more productively than last night’s news or today’s feed through your phone.
Maybe though, you do what you do to avoid that kind of logical thinking?!?
I hope not.
Have an amazing day of joy and passion!
In your service,
I write and share because I envision a better life and world for people. I was blessed to discover incredible and wonderful information that hasn’t led to my life being perfect, but I do live a life of gratitude, fun, adventure and a fairly unique level of “success”. I believe there is a science to it, with a bit of art. I am committed to sharing that science and helping others the way others have, and continue to, help me.
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