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Heroes Community > Other Side of the Monitor > Thread: Popular Culture
Thread: Popular Culture This thread is 4 pages long: 1 2 3 4 · «PREV / NEXT»
artu
artu


Promising
Undefeatable Hero
My BS sensor is tingling again
posted February 15, 2017 07:45 AM

I wouldn't call Mozart a conservative talent at all. He annoyed a lot of people with his unorthodox ideas, as far as I know about his life.

And the Youtube guy is not just generalizing, yet still correct when it comes down to the principle or main idea, every dot he connects -and I'm being generous calling that wreck connecting dots-  is where it's not supposed to be. If somebody starts his rant by blaming "cultural Marxists" for American reality TV, dadaism, pedophilia and gangsta rap, then goes on how talent was important in the good ol' days of punk (which btw, started out as a reaction to progressive rock becoming "too artsy," punk players used to play out of chord on purpose cause it made them look cool and rebellious!), blends in a few typical complaints about how sex is everwhere now because moral relativists made society give up on the "absolute truth" and concludes that as the downfall of Western Civilization, which btw, historically got ahead WHEN they started to question some "absolute truths," and puts in a final word by saying how this is why radical Islamist see them as corrupted (wonderful sample of people who claim themselves as the representitives of absolute truth, look at the wonderful, moral order they live in!), and I skipped a lot of non-sense in between cause there's really too much it, then, that's not about trying to squeeze things in 15 minutes, it is actually an accomplishment to be wrong on so many levels only in 15 minutes.
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JollyJoker
JollyJoker


Honorable
Undefeatable Hero
posted February 15, 2017 09:49 AM

It's not so different with other information. As was said so often before, the individual challenge in our time is, that everyone is living in some cacophony of brain/sense-assaulting stuff, a constant white noise of music, tv, social media, internet, news (real and fake), and the individual has to learn to shut most of it out and filter for themselves what they regard as great and important, instead of simply succumbing to all the noise and absorb what is thrown at them.

That would have been the challenge for education, both parental and school, but it looks like that train has left station quite some time ago.

On the other hand, until "recently" (in historical terms) the "masses" had no culture at all. The masses couldn't read, and if they could have read, they would have had trouble to find the money to buy a book. (Remember: Paperbacks are part of the popular culture as well, and were despised (for example by Tolkien) until VERY recently) And if they could have read and could have bought a book, they'd probably have had a problem anyway, reading it: no electrical light to see in the dark, only a candle and bone-tired after work ... would have taken them probably YEARS to read a solid book.

So "culture", no matter how you look at it, is something that has to be CHEAP enough to be afforded by the masses, and that means, the MEDIA must be available on one hand (say, radio for music), but also affordable.
The same thing is true for "being served a meal". It can't be anything fancy, obviously, because on one hand it's impossible to supply top meal for everyone (that would need a lot more fancy restaurants), and on the other hand it would be too expensive for the masses.

Which means, popular culture MUST NECESSARILY be cheap and readily available.

Another example: if you are born in a cheap neighborhood ... can you imagine being 13 and wanting to go into "the philharmony" to listen to a classical concert? You might WANT to (it's not impossible that you like the music), but you won't go, because it's all very stiff, you don't have the right clothing and so on, and the people going there are from the other side of town. Different world.

And that simply led to the situation we have; it's nothing to become morally outraged about or even cock an eyebrow.

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Galaad
Galaad

Hero of Order
posted February 15, 2017 01:42 PM

artu said:
I wouldn't call Mozart a conservative talent at all. He annoyed a lot of people with his unorthodox ideas, as far as I know about his life.


I think he meant in the musical writing, I wouldn't say I know all pieces by heart but his music was quite conform to the time he was living in. And yes, at that time, even his Vaudevilles were quite brilliant (and still are). It is hard to deny there has been a significant decrease in entertainment quality value throughout centuries. Can you believe some theaters now turn Andromaque into a comedy? Not even kidding, I've witnessed it. But most people are just watching "reality" shows on TV. Television is a quite dramatic example on topic, when it was created, its purpose was 1) deliver information, 2) deliver culture, 3) deliver entertainment. Not only the order has now been inverted, but both information and entertainment has consequently changed and not for the better. Culture is still there but it's basically one channel among the plethora available.
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Neraus
Neraus


Supreme Hero
Emperor of the Bromans
posted February 15, 2017 02:29 PM
Edited by Neraus at 14:29, 15 Feb 2017.

Galaad said:
Can you believe some theaters now turn Andromaque into a comedy? Not even kidding, I've witnessed it.


I've been recently to a "modern" adaptation of Shakespeare's "The Taming of the Shrew", credit where credit is due, it was exhilarating, but they kind of butchered it with insertions of musical like scenes or completely out of place props.
In the end it was a play in a play though, it was after all about a drama company trying to make Shakespeare more palatable to a modern audience but as one of the actors said "In the end Shakespeare's the one who loses".
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Wait, where is my clever punchline?

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artu
artu


Promising
Undefeatable Hero
My BS sensor is tingling again
posted February 15, 2017 03:25 PM
Edited by artu at 15:26, 15 Feb 2017.

Galaad said:
I think he meant in the musical writing, I wouldn't say I know all pieces by heart but his music was quite conform to the time he was living in.

Well, the bios I read about him usually portrayed him as innovative and sometimes in clash with more purist traditionalists of his time. Isn't that inevitable to an extent when you're a genius anyway? I love listening to him but can't detect if he's more of a traditionalist or progressive by ear, that would require structural knowledge.
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I hope I am mistaking - frostysh

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frostysh
frostysh


Bad-mannered
Famous Hero
WHY?
posted February 15, 2017 04:55 PM

<imo> - the mainstream, the pop-culture stuff, is a feature of the modern society that have it's roots in the basic instincts, that have formed millions years ago...
But the problem, that the pop-culture can be used as a tool to achieve the different goals, for an example - as a propaganda of destabilizing nonsense, if you want to kill another country, and begins your attack from the inside.

So I like the pop-culture, the PC-games, some movies, cartoons, anime, music, etc... I like many of that, but in the same time I remember how destructive the pop-culture may be...
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markkur
markkur


Responsible
Legendary Hero
Once upon a time
posted February 16, 2017 12:45 AM
Edited by markkur at 00:48, 16 Feb 2017.

Stevie I think one of the most alarming aspects of today's American culture (I can't speak for anywhere else) is that I would say from much of the middle-age group and down in years, briefly and generally, "consume but do not create".

Now this is not new per se but there are two ways that I think something much worse has emerged.

One, I think it even more prevalent than in the past "that people observe rather than do." i.e. Sports or music. So, as time passes, most of Society loses the Arts and also the ability to Create, while more and more people only become a butt in a seat, with purchased tickets for a public event of some kind or sitting entranced before "a screen of some sort" at home alone.

The thing "possibly" more damaging than anything to me, is the ever growing machinery and technical expertise of Corporate Advertisement and Stardom in general.

A significant moment for me was the release of Jurassic Park. Why? In the past, merchandise would (usually first brought about by public demand) come after a movie or TV character "was the rage". Looking back thru time the 50's TV series Robin Hood in Britain and the US' Superman TV series would be examples. And the list since then is not only long but nearly beyond belief. Even now, something new has just been introduced and something to replace it...on the way.

However, back to Jurassic Park, the Producers unabashedly introduced Merchandizing "within" the Movie itself. Few noticed this "new aggressive move" and I think the success of that new strategy at that time, has done nothing but bring in the bucks to the point where most people hop on board without thinking about much of anything. It's became a way of life to "buy the latest cool image" even if what is sold is not merely a silly waste of money fad but too often can be destructive programming.

I know children that have parents that buy all available products for the latest animated character (fake) and literally blanket the kids room at the demand of a 7 year-old?! Only, to turn around and do this over and over again for each new idol? What's even more ridiculous is that these same grown-ups? are doing this madness when they are often NOT able to make ends meet? Of course, then the kid grows up a wee bit and is a self-centered lay-about and those same brilliant parents blame the kid and/or Society.

For this old man, Culture today is best described as habitual unreasonable non-thought, blindly engaged in the highs of consumption. However, I'm not without understanding...these generations have grown-up bombarded with ad-crap like a Car-Manufacturers selling Cars behind ads like "Drive=Love" with a suggestively dressed young model draped over the hood." Maybe that's a clue?
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"Poetry is a felt change of consciousness"

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mvassilev
mvassilev


Responsible
Undefeatable Hero
HC SUPPORTER
posted February 16, 2017 04:43 AM
Edited by mvassilev at 04:46, 16 Feb 2017.

You people really like to complain. If you hate it so much, stay away from it - it's that simple.
How horrible it is that people take naked pictures of themselves!
Don't worry, we all know you're smart because you hate the right things.
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Eccentric Opinion

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tSar-Ivor
tSar-Ivor


Legendary Hero
A - Ω
posted February 16, 2017 06:05 AM
Edited by tSar-Ivor at 06:33, 16 Feb 2017.

Quote:
If you hate it so much, stay away from it - it's that simple.


Mvaaaaaaaaas for all your brains I'd think it would be obvious for you. People aren't rational or analytical (or christ they're not even consistent), those are not inherent traits of a human subject but skills you learn and master. Being out of touch is the number one problem of the academic establishment imho, all of our studies assume other human beings are like us or can think like us (the 'you can do it it's simple' misnomer, critical thought is a skill and learning it changes your fundamental thought-process not necessarily for the better).

So no Mvass, while it might seem like a simple thing on paper, you will find it to be one of the hardest things to ever accomplish in your life, to change someone's mind . It's not something anyone can change but the individual in question.
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"No laughs were had. There is only shame and sadness" Jenny.

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artu
artu


Promising
Undefeatable Hero
My BS sensor is tingling again
posted February 16, 2017 06:12 AM

Easy tiger, aren't you only a student yet?
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I hope I am mistaking - frostysh

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tSar-Ivor
tSar-Ivor


Legendary Hero
A - Ω
posted February 16, 2017 06:14 AM
Edited by tSar-Ivor at 07:11, 16 Feb 2017.

Anyway, there's no rational reason to let the cat out of the bag, if Hcers want to consign (in my mind) to the "sheepish" position of anti popular culture then that's fine, let them express their discontent to their fullest for whatever self gratifying reason (this is the special place for you all to do that afterall I don't really have any reason to upset that or your reasoning).

Personally though, I don't really have an opinion on the matter, or to be more specific I don't really see a problem so I have zero concerns in regard to the concept or the video's message of the nature of pop-culture (on a personal level, when i interact with others my position may change on a case-by-case basis, but even then I hold individuals to account not the pop-culture qualities that they exhibit).


@artu Oh aye third year uni student, I underwent this process and I can tell you there are some that simply can't cope, they had good heads for school, but to succeed at uni you have to adopt an academic mindset. As someone who underwent this recently it's very subtle, and if you integrate it you will change at a fundamental level. I'm not necessarily any more consistent than the next person, by I will be able to reflect more effectively on my own capabilities and shortcomings.
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"No laughs were had. There is only shame and sadness" Jenny.

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Elvin
Elvin


Admirable
Omnipresent Hero
Tastes like chicken
posted February 16, 2017 08:40 AM

markkur said:
It's became a way of life to "buy the latest cool image" even if what is sold is not merely a silly waste of money fad but too often can be destructive programming.

For this old man, Culture today is best described as habitual unreasonable non-thought, blindly engaged in the highs of consumption. However, I'm not without understanding...these generations have grown-up bombarded with ad-crap like a Car-Manufacturers selling Cars behind ads like "Drive=Love" with a suggestively dressed young model draped over the hood." Maybe that's a clue?

Mind programming are what we economists do best. The choice is always up to the one with the money but someone has to create a need for those money to be spent. Whether the product in question is in any way needed or not, demand can be created.

I won't stick to the video's details for a good number of reasons but I agree with the general message. It's not about preferring punk or any of that, it's about people and how they have been 'conditioned' to think this way. Or not to think too much about it at any rate. And that is where JJ nailed it, it all starts with the education and how accessible it is. I won't compare earlier times in history with today's standards but really, we can and ought to do better than that. If people are 'aware' and still enjoy certain facets of today's entertainment that's great, I'm sure all of us have something they like. The idea is not omg this system blows, let's destroy it. The idea is to make sure people are aware of what is going on and to what end. To not swallow whatever is thrown their way without a second thought. If people change, so too will their entertainment values and needs.
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tSar-Ivor
tSar-Ivor


Legendary Hero
A - Ω
posted February 16, 2017 08:59 AM
Edited by tSar-Ivor at 09:04, 16 Feb 2017.

Quote:

Mind programming are what we economists do best. The choice is always up to the one with the money but someone has to create a need for those money to be spent. Whether the product in question is in any way needed or not, demand can be created.


I've seen an aspect of Elvin's theory at work, student loans/grants especially are a really good way to promote capitalism (students spend more both on appliances and services especially if they move out which also boosts the housing/rent market). So if you really want to boost the economy by injecting money into it just give more money to those that will be more likely to spend it, i.e students. Not that I necessarily agree with it, I've just seen it at work in my own experience.

This way you dont necessarily create a need or desire for products, just give though to those with little inkling (on a whole) for restraint.
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"No laughs were had. There is only shame and sadness" Jenny.

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artu
artu


Promising
Undefeatable Hero
My BS sensor is tingling again
posted February 16, 2017 09:01 AM
Edited by artu at 11:02, 16 Feb 2017.

@Elvin

Well, it is partly about education, of course but what seems to fly by you is that it is also about HIS education. He is simply hostile to anything he doesnt understand, using philosophical terms which means completely something else than what he happens to believe, blaming unrelated parties, anachronically condescending art forms categorically with the most superficial objection possible, suggesting HIS life style as the only legitimate alternative... That is like a textbook summary of bigotry. So in this case, you have a conservative shallow person, ranting about some non-conservative shallow people, since they also have sex and drugs in the mix. Big sin! His problem is thinking that it is the sex or drugs that cause the shallowness, so he's immune to it, while he is deep down in it. He is exactly what he tries but fails to criticize.
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Salamandre
Salamandre


Admirable
Omnipresent Hero
Wog refugee
posted February 16, 2017 09:37 AM

Guys, there is no popular culture at all, but just culture in various forms. The claim that one may not have the money to get to last Philharmonic concert is just outdated, what we talk here mostly is about how culture is done and offered in advanced industrialized countries. We have internet, everything is available, more or less free, but mostly free, isn't it?

There are many true things said in that video, please stop emphasizing about conservatism and progressist opposition, those words have no meaning in art -and recently no sense anywhere else, you just use them to make your own point which you constantly change, start studying art if you want to understand. Television is a progress compared to Radio, Electricity is a progress compared to light candle, women rights are a progress. Beethoven isn't a progress compared to anything before, neither Rachmaninoff compared to Beethoven, this isn't the way such data is analyzed. Rachmaninoff isn't a conservative because while Stravinsky and Prokofiev break the tonality, he still prefers to use it intensively, he is an extension of romanticism, and we have in history multiple examples of arts expressions which constantly tangle between styles, can even delay one indefinitely, or announces one a lot of time before the "official" opening, see Schonberg or even Liszt in his late works.

But whatever it goes, there is one thing which was always common to all styles, creators, they were SKILLED technically and had a deep message to make hear, the skill making possible to pass the message unaltered. About human struggle, about beauty, about our unanswered questions, about our love mishaps, art tries to answer to what the words are unable to. This isn't the case anymore today with a large part of the culture, not all but a very large part nonetheless. Modern art can be a pure fail, not all but a large part, modern music as well, modern theater, and the reason behind that isn't the education availability, but the superficiality of the human nature, the false conviction many of us have that we have no limits or that work is not required to produce art. There is no skill anymore. People think they can produce art within a few hours, thats all. You can view or listen to any complex art or musical work today, yet many of us choose to listen to rap, electronic or Metallica, is your choice to remain uncultivated, mainly because there is no demand from you for a quality artistic response -and please don't accuse me of elitism while yourself concluded it IS about education. Beauty isn't something we need to redefine, stop listening to those who claim it because themselves are incapable to produce it in its pure form, so they need to cheat. Take 100 random people, show them a modern painting with a blue dot in middle, then a Madonna of Raphael, ask them which is beautiful and you will have the answer, once for eternity and not disputable. And is not that a painted woman is more attractive than a blue dot, but about the message we receive when contemplating a human face painted with great skill and inspiration, with all the supposed struggles and conflicts behind -which we identify with because our personal experience, compared to a blue dot, which is just a blue dot and will remain forever a blue dot. A large part of modern art is indeed ugliness and is because people creating it are uneducated and unskilled, thats all.

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artu
artu


Promising
Undefeatable Hero
My BS sensor is tingling again
posted February 16, 2017 10:34 AM

You can't interpret it  as a lot of truth since the diagnosis itself is COMPLETELY incorrect and he is putting extremely different things in one basket. People don't consume shallow products more because of moral corruption, people consume shallow products more because they are easier to reach, easier to grasp and life is getting faster with so many things everywhere at once. Taking shallow phenomenon, meanwhile confusing a lot of other stuff for shallow phenomenon, and waving the normative morality flag like some mountain town priest is utter crap and just because you also don't like some of the stuff or art work in the video, doesn't make his rant "the truth." Because more than what he rants about, it's about WHY he rants about it. That's the part about "conservatism and progressist opposition," his ideological position, not the part about art works. And there is innovation in art, that is still a non-conservative mind set but that's a side-line topic. Let me just say, of course it is different than the political conservatism versus progression but there are still people taking sides between tradition and innovation, purists and revisionists etc...

It would also be good for you to remember that, there is no stone wall between people who listen to Handel and people who listen to Metallica, Lang Lang, the pianist you seem to be so fond of PLAYS Metallica in concert. A lot of people listen to both high art products and popular stuff, they appeal to different moods and frames of life.

And of course, modern art is not "a fail", I don't find your position elitist in this regard, on the contrary, I find it extremely narrow-minded and you are simply not interested in it enough to take an effort to understand it. It does require skill and more importantly, creativity. Are there mediocre works, yes, as there had always been, mediocre works are the majority and they wont be remembered 500 years from now, just like we don't remember thousands of painters from Leonardo's time now. You can't have classical painting or sculpture working on zillions of Virgin Marys in 2017. Every age produces its own mentality, own searchings, own concepts and conceptual art is not something categorically doomed to be bad quality. Looking at some non-figurative stuff and saying "Hey, I can do that, too" is abysmal. It's not legit criticism.  
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JollyJoker
JollyJoker


Honorable
Undefeatable Hero
posted February 16, 2017 10:46 AM

It's about CULTURE. Not art. ART is just PART of the culture. Culture includes for example "fashion", and with fashion I don't mean Dior and designer clothes, but clothing STYLE (and similarities) with certain groups. And there is OF COURSE a "popular culture", broadly spoken, the thing that is called Zeitgeist, which is developing.

Because that's also part of the culture - it's a LIVING thing. It develops. It WANTS to develop, because as the times are changing, culture does as well.

The classics are fine, but they have two serious "flaws": they are dead and they represent another time and therefore a different Zeitgeist. Mozart is just as dead as are George Gershwin, Glenn Miller - or David Bowie. Tacitus is as dead as Goethe or Sartre.

Culture needs MEDIA. For example, look at the Louvre. The number of people that can visit the Louvre on any given day is limited, as is the number of pictures a person can look at, not to mention study. Without a way of reproducing it and making it available to look at, only a small fraction of people could look at them.
Same is true for everything else. POPULAR culture needs media and means of (fast) communication, otherwise your "culture" is the culture of a few - elitist.

The progress made in the last century has led to a steep increase in everything, and as I've been trying to explain for some time now, once things are for everyone, (in capitalism) there will always be a lot of cheap and therefore lower-quality stuff. The internet doesn't change that - the internet just makes things more readily available, but a population sitting at their PCs with a headset on and looking at or listening to stuff doesn't equal culture or consumption of art as doesn't watching TV the whole day.

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frostysh
frostysh


Bad-mannered
Famous Hero
WHY?
posted February 16, 2017 03:21 PM
Edited by frostysh at 15:28, 16 Feb 2017.

Salamandre -
Salamandre said:
Guys, there is no popular culture at all, but just culture in various forms . . .
*facepalm*



Who likes spongebob? The everybody likes spongebob! and frostysh very likes spongebob cartoon series . Also everybody likes:

,

jeans wear, coca-cola, ibm, microsoft, etc..  Beethoven and stuff - was a popular culture in their times, where replacing for a MP3-players and cinema was a live music and poetry. In that times "Decameron" for folks was like "Games of Thrones" for you today, mr Salamandre . The population of the entire Europe in the that times, was something like a few Moscow.

But the times are changin' the society today is much more dynamic, much more "advanced", in the cultural field too. Modern art is no less "art" than old one. But today to many painters can create too many picture, so it is hard to create something like never before. Like stuff created, that you have mentioned.

This situation have it's downside, the popular culture becoming more "directed" as I said. So the purpose of creating of the most popular culture - is not an art That because most of those content is looks not good .
But this is only evolution, and peoples a free to choice the culture that they liked. Well, most of peoples. For an example in the DPRK you are not free to choose a culture that you liked, if you will made "a wrong choice", - you, your family, your friend, and even your neighborhoods most probably will be no able to make any choices anymore... .  

artu -
artu said:
. . .People don't consume shallow products more because of moral corruption, people consume shallow products more because they are easier to reach, easier to grasp and life is getting faster with so many things everywhere at once. . . .

+1, mostly agree.

JollyJoker -

Yeah, those all guys are dead, but their names and their deeds - almost immortal . Even frostysh have a bowie-pop-stuff, ahhh, nostalgia... Anyway, imho - too materialistic, you trying to explain, to turn a difficult things into a simple uncle-Karl like nonsense, which is doomed from a beginning.

But with some stuff I agreed +1
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markkur
markkur


Responsible
Legendary Hero
Once upon a time
posted February 16, 2017 04:31 PM
Edited by markkur at 16:50, 16 Feb 2017.

Elvin said:
markkur said:
It's became a way of life to "buy the latest cool image" even if what is sold is not merely a silly waste of money fad but too often can be destructive programming.

For this old man, Culture today is best described as habitual unreasonable non-thought, blindly engaged in the highs of consumption. However, I'm not without understanding...these generations have grown-up bombarded with ad-crap like a Car-Manufacturers selling Cars behind ads like "Drive=Love" with a suggestively dressed young model draped over the hood." Maybe that's a clue?

Mind programming are what we economists do best. The choice is always up to the one with the money but someone has to create a need for those money to be spent. Whether the product in question is in any way needed or not, demand can be created.


Bless you with boatloads of Baklava Elvin (you can always sell it)

Spot-on in Spades. Now we buy and trade illusions.
Magi: "Nothing up my sleeve" Kid: <rolls eyes> "Yeah We know".

I didn't watch the vid because I didn't need to, I've been disgruntled with culture for two reasons and since the mid 80s. The most important impact? 2 Children, a Girl first and then a Boy. <imvho> The grounds for personal discussion changes when we become responsible for the next Generation and attempt to undo what is very hard to stop.

I stated "my" obvious about "Family-life", because that's my Passion. iirc there's even a Cartoon called that. Also iirc Family-Guy and All in the Family also comes to mind.

Edit=

I said this;

"The most important impact? 2 Children, a Girl first and then a Boy. <imvho> The grounds for personal discussion changes when we become responsible for the next Generation and attempt to undo what is very hard to stop."

but I should have "admitted" more. I as a Father went down in flames. Do not assume anything about me...my Christianity was dubious at best.

I didn't "press" my little ones  Nicely nor Nastily towards anything but Freedom of their own mind. As a fact, I thought they would merely "Soak up my Love" and flower into decent, wise human beings. However, the "piper of the world" knows more than cute-tunes and at the time I didn't have a clue of what a caring devoted parent is up against from the "Manufacturers of (illusory) Need."

Coming from a home-life that I was handed & running at the age of 12, with two younger brothers of 10 and 6, while the remaining parent worked and played away from that reality, our, home? As a Father I worked my butt off failing as well as I did.

If Education is only viewed as a product given by State-Function?...nearly everybody loses in the long run and a chain is passed to the next young minds.


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artu
artu


Promising
Undefeatable Hero
My BS sensor is tingling again
posted February 16, 2017 08:04 PM

Quote:
If Education is only viewed as a product given by State-Function?...nearly everybody loses in the long run and a chain is passed to the next young minds.

I think what people mean by that is people who are educated better will seek for higher quality entertainment instead of reality TV or worse kind of popular music etc. So, it's not specifically about state education but rather having higher standards in general. Public education is just a factor.

This is, of course, true to some extent but not exactly a hit on the bullseye. Since, people pick on shallow things for many reasons. For instance, I can not stand reality TV, it's just noise to me. I was in Ayvalik just recently, I was staying in the family house, my aunt dropped by for a week, she's a collage graduate, she translates books, her taste  in literature, music, cinema is quite above average. Yet, every night, she was watching this reality show, our shows don't have nudity or sex but rather young boys and girls stuck in a studio house in some challenge format where they vote people to stay or leave. Since her hearing is not so good, she was turning up the volume real high and I can tell you, the show was basically the worse kind of idiots constantly  bickering and gossiping about each other, having a series of forced, superficial fights. Constant yelling. At some point, I couldn't take it anymore and asked her why is she wasting her hours on this non-sense and made a tongue in cheek comment, saying it lowers the IQ even eavesdropping from the next room. She replied because it was non-sense, it just "emptied her mind" and it was a nice distraction from her daily hussle: "It's not much different than you watching those stupid action films, honey." What can you say to that. I just nodded OK. People don't spend all their time to be elevated, they just want popcorn sometimes. I think, ideally,  there should be a minimal level of quality even in popcorn but what determines the average product is the majority and they are by definition "the average." Now, when I was a kid, we only had one TV channel and it was state TV, it had no incentive of making money. They used to broadcast undersea documentaries (all of my generation remembers Captain Cousteau) or some talk show with actual artists etc.. Sunday mornings, there was always a classical music concert, picked by one of our conductors, now, sunday morning TV is usually Oprah style shows with guests who are pop stars and actors from soap operas. Back when that was the only option, people who were spending their time in front of the TV, didn't run out and rushed into doing anything else, they watched Captain Cousteau or the London Philarmonic instead of reality TV. But since capitalism has this dynamic of "bad money sweeps out good money" and it applies to almost every aspect of consumerism, you just learn to live with it and focus on your own preferences. Rather than moral values, this has everything to do with the fact that if something is easy to consume, majority of the people will pick it no matter what they are capable of consuming.

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