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Budimir Zdravkovic

PhD student in biochemistry/cancer biology,

TEDCRED 20+

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The Nature of Charlie Sheen

He seems to be quite the phenomenon. He was one of those celebrities who I never paid much attention to after the movie Hot Shots. But suddenly the media and Internet experienced a Charlie Sheen boom. People are even gladly investing their musical talents to make songs and remixes of his interview. If internet lulz had any credible money value I project these people would lead America out of an economic crisis.

But the question is does the media create these characters we want to see has journalism become a a form of theater and drama that creates artificial stories, Charlie Sheen could be doing this for publicity, he is certainly an actor and he can convince us that he is out of his mind. Another phenomenon is Glen Beck, who simply can't be that crazy, or Paris Hilton who may not be the spoiled superficial brat we all believe her to be but who simply conforms to the expectations of her viewers.

Now these are trivial cases of course, whether Paris Hilton is a brat or not will not cure cancer. The Hilton family has provided humanity with plenty of hotel rooms, without them the worst that could happen is that young people might not lose their virginity on prom night. With Glenn Beck no one takes him seriously anyway.

But could the medias potential to fabricate stories turn out to have more severe consequences, can we know what truly happens when we are fighting a war overseas or engaging in international affairs, did this fabrication of reality play a role in the atrocities in Iraq?

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    Mar 21 2011: Interesting topic you have raised. I, for one, am constantly baffled by what we are subjected to in the news. In the UK we fortunate enough to have the BBC which, to its credit, provides a fairly impartial insight into current affairs.

    On a slightly different note, I can't help but find the coverage of Libya anti aircraft strikes slightly distasteful. The invention of 24/7 news seems to have placed a requirement on the broadcasters to make war into this exciting 'anything could happen' event, where you can watch planes taking off, live; and if you're particularly lucky you can watch looped footage of a missile exploding with staggering consequences! The sad reality is that war is often complex, and its not just a case of goddies and baddies. Inevitably, it is always going to be the innocent civilians who suffer.
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      Mar 22 2011: Yeah it's great to find someone who can see both sides of the story. If you watch war movies in the cinema and so on, every American war film I've seen is incredibly even sickeningly patriotic, separating the good from the bad. While European war movies tend to place emphasis on the tragedy of war rather than the heroism. This in itself is a kind of propaganda not to mention the bombing of civilian targets the strangulation of resources and support of terrorist regimes all of which America has partaken at some point.

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