Why I Watch HGTV

I can’t watch regular TV anymore. It drives me crazy.

This morning was as good an example as any. My husband flipped on ‘Face the Nation’ just as Paul Ryan was telling David Gregory–with a straight face–that the Occupy Wall Street demonstrators and President Obama are “dividing Americans.” He made a great show of sadness at this clearly unwarranted state of affairs, while I had to be physically restrained from throwing something at the screen. I changed the channel as David Gregory was suggesting that perhaps, just perhaps┬áthe GOPs insistence on protecting their wealthy base at all costs while refusing to pass anything the administration suggested (even, he should have added, when the proposal had originally been theirs) might also be considered “divisive.”

It wasn’t a half-hour later that a Ballard commercial aired. The spot showed “citizens” (females–have you noticed that all Ballard’s attack ads feature women doing the negative messaging?) criticizing Melina Kennedy (no relation!) for tax increases that occurred when she was deputy mayor, and saying that property taxes have been lower under Mayor Ballard. The fact that property taxes are raised and lowered by the state legislature hasn’t kept Ballard from benefitting from them–he won election in the first place by blaming Bart Peterson for taxes that were levied primarily by the legislature. He obviously assumes that people aren’t any better informed about who does what than they were four years ago, and he can get away with claiming credit for something he had nothing to do with.

Two brazen lies within the space of an hour, and I was ready to see a kitchen remodeled or a yard crashed. I may not approve of those cherry cabinets–I may not like the fire pit installed in the patio–but I do enjoy the lack of mendacity, hypocrisy and self-importance. And after all, if the designers screw up the bathroom, it doesn’t affect my life.

When Congressmen sell the Republic to the highest bidders while ignoring the critical problems faced by so many Americans, it does affect me. When Mayors take credit for all manner of things that are either untrue (crime is down) or unwise (selling city assets to political cronies) or that they had nothing to do with (lower property taxes), it gives me ulcers.

I wonder where House-Hunters International will film next….


  1. Sheila, Garland (the Hubster) has had to put me on a news diet, saying that the next step would have me making an appearance on the show, Intervention.

    What is so galling is that those lies go largely unchallenged. We have become a nation of government of the uninformed, by the uninformed and for the uninformed.

    I hear the Food Network’s showing BBQ recipes…

  2. Don’t give up on TV yet. At least the issues, lies or not, are out there to judge. Surely, common sense will make this contest just one more Hoosier election to take with a grain of salt. It is kind of fun in a way, and maybe the issues will recieve some needed publicity, and conversation. Mary J. B. PS: the Food chanel is a good stress reducer.

  3. I stopped watching the Sunday morning talk shows after Tim Russert died. All the commendators are spineless. I, too, find all the women in the Ballard ads disgusting and hope they backfire. Diners, Drive Ins and Dives helps me keep my sanity.

  4. The President doesn’t have a light touch either, with quotes in the ballpark of those in disagreement being the enemy, who must long for alligators in moats on the border, all while clinging to their guns and religion (when not busy restocking the moats).

    I appreciate politics being incredibly ugly on both sides, yet the need to remain grateful at moments like the apparent burial of Osama Bin Laden at sea (on President Obama’s watch). But, with vitually no bad guys found among Fannie Mae, Congress, Wall Street, and the Federal Reserve from the 2008 home loans disaster, it’s unfair to single out only Congress as susceptable to the highest bidder (or donor).

    I don’t think “Occupiers” are dividing America any more or less than Tea Partiers. Without knowing the entirety of the issues and sub-issues, it appears when it comes to opposing those above the law and part of a “magic group”- whether fiscal or political, governmental or private, rich or poor- there may be some commonality.

  5. @#2 (Mary): That politicians lie is nothing new or earth-shaking. But the job of the news media is supposed to be taking a good hard look at the claims politicians make and exposing the lies. How else can we judge these claims? I no longer have any faith in the capacity of people to use common sense when it comes to our political sphere. While everyone is fed up with Washington, in general, they continue to vote to send back the very politicians that are working hardest to hurt them, and turning out the ones who have championed their interest. How is that common-sensical?

    If we are to truly become a nation that uses common sense to decide elections, we have to insist that the news media do their job of fact-checking politicians’ claims, and then — and here’s the trickiest part — we have to pay attention.

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