Why Do We Embrace Hysteria?

Everywhere you look in the news there is hysteria. On our side, there is hysteria about the implication of the Russia story, Trump’s poll numbers, our own poor GOP leadership and whether NSA chief H.R. McMaster is a villain out to destroy the conservatives in the Cabinet or OK.

On the Left there is hysteria about global climate change, Russia, Trump, Trump, Trump and all he does and now the North Korea threat.

It’s all overblown.

The news media has an interest in keeping you glued to the TV, radio or internet. You don’t watch/listen, they don’t make money. Pundits, too. They want you to think they are much wiser and knowledgeable than the rest of us. They are paid to brood and alarm. They want you scared.

The political parties have an interest in it, too, especially on the Democrat side. They need money coming to their coffers because money means power. Ditto universities, special interest groups and social justice warriors. If you’re disinterested or content, they can’t function.

I couldn’t help but think back to August of 2001 for an example. The event at that time was President Bush making a speech at his Crawford ranch. He gave a nationwide address on the topic of stem cell therapy. The conservatives/evangelicals were edgy about whether he would let federal funding be used on stem cells from embryos that were already in existence and continue to be or whether – the Left’s stance – he would deny this research to be done in the fight against certain diseases. Some of them even marched in front of his home.

It was the first prime time speech of his presidency. There was enormous attention given to it. Indeed, Bush himself called the issue “one of the most profound of our time.”

Bush ended up giving ground to each side. He said he would limit federal funding for existing lines of embryonic stem cells, restricting it to embryos that had already been destroyed.

I remember watching it, quite concerned.

And yet, it has not lasted as a major issue or even been remembered by most Americans What came after – September 11 and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, plus the housing bubble eclipsed all of this.

Probably this will happen with the Russia turmoil, too. As to North Korea, in the winter/spring of 2001 there was an incident in which one of our spy planes shot down a Chinese pilot. In retaliation China detained the 24 man crew. Colin Powell sorted that out and it, too, has been mostly forgotten.

We can’t fall prey to the media’s desire to cause angst and division. They want hysteria. But hysteria leads to chaos just as they are not reporting about in Venezuela. You can see why.

Trump may be new to politics, but he isn’t to the way the world works. Give him a chance and he’ll work it all out.

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