Saturday, December 02, 2006

I don’t pretend to any expertise or field experience, so this is just from what’s been reported and the situation as I’ve followed it. But enough with the disclaimers; they’re redundant and therefore unnecessary, and perhaps annoying and … I guess that’s disclaiming the disclaimer.

The need to express an opinion on things of pressing importance and consequence seems high for a lot of people, especially for those (myself included) who are neither directly involved nor actually knowledgeable. Sometimes things are better left unsaid, as they may simply add nothing new to the dialogue. But this blogger is not here to determine that, because for someone to say “That’s nothing new” smacks of elitist presupposition.

Yet that’s exactly the problem. An elite of commentators and analysts digests reality for us nearly constantly, too rapidly to either absorb or reflect on what we see and hear, enforcing some memes and throwing out others. The idea of being overabundantly interconnected with the world and yet so disconnected from it emerges, no longer so paradoxically. We want the real-world picture, with the fuzzy ambiguities sharpened, the murky subtext dredged out onto the microscope slide for powerful focus, all and everything chopped up, packed away and sold en masse.

What about the cynical, absolutist and simplistic lenses wielded at times by our self-appointed opinionists? I’ll of course admit my membership in the “blogosphere,” something that remains unclear in what it is or what it’s doing, or contributing to. It certainly cannot be a coherent whole, and therefore not any kind of sphere. (Maybe, instead, it’s a sphere in the sense of a gaseous ball of fire, which has no real surface but is rather pulled into its shape by the force of gravity.) Whatever it is, the blogs themselves form a sort of disjointed group that has plenty of opinionists, commentating aggregators, etc.

The world may be totally insane, but I think a lot of promise exists in many places. One hope of mine is that the collective power of human thought (in any medium) will eventually break apart the forces of evil that the surface of these media keep reflecting, masking that hope with overwhelmed notes of resignation and pretensions of understanding.

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