Q: Is NPR just as void of relevant information as regular news?

A: I’m sorry to say it, but yes.  I spent 30 minutes listening to All Thing’s Considered today and there wasn’t a single truly relevant thing discussed OR that I wasn’t already apparent from a single glance at twitter.

Here’s the Top 11 headlines from this program (which is NPR’s flagship) on 6/13/12:

  • U.S., Russia Accused Of Arming Opposite Syrian Sides
  • The Pentagon’s Biggest Threat In Years? Budget Cuts 
  • French First Lady Sets Country A-Twitter
  • ‘That’s A Clown Question, Bro’ Or The Rhetorical Comeback Rounding Twitter
  • New Internet Suffixes Are The Web’s Newest Frontier
  • As Home-As-B&B Service Grows, So Does Controversy
  • Colo. Fire Now One Of The Biggest In State History
  • Climate Change May Spark More Wildfires In Future
  • Stories Differ After Israeli Soldiers Kill Palestinian
  • Water War Continues In Iowa After Flooding Recedes
  • ‘Times-Picayune’ Paper Slashes Staff By 200 People

Of interest to me personally are exactly… zero of these stories.  None of them have a direct, relevant impact on my day-to-day life.  Yes, it’s terrible some people are dying in the Middle East (aren’t they always?) or scientists continue to speculate that we might/maybe have a dry climate in the future.   We’ve got to be aware, right?  

Yet, it troubles me that we (as the ‘learned’ ones) spend so much effort consuming this crap information.  We come home worried or depressed because of bad news or, at best, worthless gossip like whether the very beautiful French First Lady is going bonkers on twitter.  Who cares?  I don’t see the point in filling my head with this garbage.

Michael Girdley