Some news items are simply not titillating enough like the page 3 thrash that the Times of India and other psuedo tabloids serve us each day, in the 24×7 media beast which is fed by all sorts of manufactured content. Now a days legislative agenda is dictated by media news rooms, and indirectly by the corporate sector who hire pr firms and lobbyists like Nira Radia to expedite ‘matters’. The News of the World fracas, that brought down The powerful Murdoch’s from the heights of their power exposed the dirty under belly of the politico-media nexus. The consumer feeds on racy stories and sensational content rather than reflective Op-Ed columns, that really matter. The basic Roti, Kapda, Makan or the basic livelihood issues are simply not sexy, to sell. Let’s acknowledge that Kat sells and not Kanoon (Legislative concerns).
The ability to keep focus and to deliver bread and butter issues a midst the media hype, differentiates a quality leadership than from an one that concentrates on electoral cycles. The Media making and breaking a regime is good at times as a movement sometimes needs media backing to transmit its core message across for change as Barack Obama in 2008 and Mamata Didi’s historic win in May. The concept of paid stories, dilutes the credibility of the messenger. The Government’s agenda seems to be shaped according to the media spin doctors and the so called pundits who dictate the public discourse. During the boom times in the early 2000’s, when the business media were worshiping the beauty of free market fundamentalism when the American consumers were fooled in to buying into and feeding the sub prime bubble.
The rhetoric of the 2003 Iraq War and the Af-Pak war theater was over bearing by the media to create a lock in when there were no WMD’s in Iraq. Well, he was a dictator like many around, so does that give us the license to kill?
The take away from the story is that we should all be aware of the black swan event in our blind spot. It can ruin us. Leaders need to be cognizant of the uncool and have the preparedness for the unknown. Its an age of vulnerability that we live in and the Norway tragedy illustrates the importance of not losing sight on the so called unglamorous fringe issues.