Thursday, January 16, 2020

Your Favorite Candidate Sucks

I suppose the first election campaign I really remember as an adult - I mean campaign as a long extended event, not just the "election" - was 1992. Then there was cable news and Cspan if you were junkie. IIRC you could just spend hours (not that even I did) watching Cspan basically point cameras at campaign events. But cable news (CNN) wasn't just (mostly) about politics then. It was just a bit of the action. Politics was a subset of news, not the other way around.

Anyway, my point is, even if you were a complete politics nerds, you wouldn't have access to the politics as constant national events. I don't remember how many primary "debates" or similar there were, but they weren't accompanied by countdown clocks and pre-analysis and the spin room and post-post-analysis, or certainly not more of an hour of any of that. You might read about it in the paper - probably your local one, who had a NYT or WaPo subscription? - the next day or the day after that.

Even in 2004 or 2008 or 2012 only nerds probably had any sense at all of the hourly or even daily developments. Smartphones have shoved that stuff into the feeds of even more normal people who would otherwise be paying attention to other things.

Such changes are neither good nor bad, really, they just are. Now more people can get mad about politics constantly!