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Should we expect anyone in the entertainment industry to be role models?

I've realized while thinking about athletes and artists (of music) that I don't care about the performers personal life (or anything beyond sports/music) as long as it doesn't stop them from being a great basketball player or artist (obvious exception is something illegal, but anything else like personal opinions I don't care about). I'd just like to see if anyone else feels the same why and explain why or why not.

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    May 25 2013: Hi Kai,


    Nothing in industry should be viewed as a role model.

    Here's why:

    In industry, we develop the means of production to create surplus.
    A surplus is that which has no use to us, but has use to others.
    Thus we produce that which we do not want or need.

    In industry, all that is produced is contempt - making stuff of no value to ourselves..
    By buying that contempt, we dishonour ourselves.

    Money is the crystal commodity of surplus - to pay for anything is to contempt the producer.

    Money crystalizes as a result of specialisation.

    To specialize is to contempt your own sufficiency to live.

    Thus anything recognised as industry is an expression of self-hatred.

    If you have self-hatred as a role model, then you will never have access to your true value.

    Thus entertainment is the industry of self hatred.

    Ask yourself:

    Why do you need to be entertained?

    What is it about you that you need to be distracted from this moment?

    Have you been lied to?

    You have been lied to.

    Stop lying to yourself and drop the need for the industry of self-distraction.

    This was thrust on you, it was lies from the start, and you need not comply.

    Just play music - music is self-love.
    And more than that - it is the love you can have for others by accepting their love for you.
    This cannot be an industry.

    If you must - join the legions of the self-hated. But the music will release you in the end.
    If you start. And that is the only role that exists - starting .. there is no end.
    Start again - this time from truth.
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        May 29 2013: Hi Carolyn,

        Crystalization is a self-organising process. In the case of money, it is the formation of the universal commodity in the medium of the commodity.
        The commodity embodies the alienation of advantage.
        Where the word "value" gets used, it stops us from discerning what value really is - I have a more reduced definition for it:
        Value is the means by which a self organising pattern achieves persistence into the next moment.
        In anthropogenic terms: "if you don't eat you die".
        It gets a little more abstract when you dissect the existential loop, but part of that loop will define a process of assembling potential advantage around actions needed to maintain persistence.
        It is in the calculation of advantage options that yields a set of potentials which deliver the result of persistence - and those potential actions which deliver more than persistence - i.e. surplus.
        The alienation of this body of potential surplus gives rise to the thing we call "commodity" and imbue in it a notion of exchange value - an indirect means of potential advantage.
        In the at-rest continuum of community, the indirect advantage is never alienated.
        But once the community accepts alienation of indirect advantage, a separation occurs which allows the crystalisation of the universal commodity - money .. which starts as an alienated commodity, but then competes with all commodities to become supreme as a new pattern - and thus attains sentience in a basic sense. Therefore, money is a crystaline creature occupying the environmental niche of alienated value.
        Had the value not been alienated, it would not be an open environmental niche and could not be colonised.
        You will note that the isolation of value gives rise to the entropic artefact of externalities.
        But back on topic: Industry is the practice of alienation - the separation of surplus from a human being. This is done by stimulating individual potential agency to choose alienated surplus.
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        May 31 2013: hi Carolyn,

        Please do take the time - in 2000 characters it is necessary to speak in an extremely condensed form.
        The notion of commodity arises from the great theorists of the enlightenment from Smith to Marx and beyond .. you will see that they all grapple with the transformative moment of the existential loop that defines life itself.
        In particular, Marx attempts to reduce the meaning of "value" - and gets a fair way into its mystery.
        My approach is to take the work of these great thinkers and introduce the new appreciation of neural network dynamics which simplifies erroneous assumptions - things such as consciousness and spirit cease to remain as mysteries when you observe the emergent properties of a neural net. The notion of emergence couples well with the dynamic Darwin grappled with. It is this intrinsic simplifier that collapses nearly every argument in philosophy and economics. However, some areas remain for scrutiny. Dawkins has a go at the new simplification via the concept of the meme, but is halted by the bedrock mathematical chaos in which such things arise.
        The absolute light-bulb moment is contained in Antonio Damasio's talk on TED - then add the talk by Wolpert on the Bayesian learning method - between these you get the medium and the dynamic and can extrapolate things a long way.
        If you are interested, I could send my draft thesis - I don't imagine it will ever be finished, so I'm happy to distribute it as a "raw material" for the consideration of other theorists. I'd need an email address.
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        May 31 2013: Hi Again ..

        In re-reading this, I see I haven't answered your question in the frame of the causal link between specialization and the crystal precipitation of money as the dominant commodity.

        Specialization is the process by which an individual loses the capacity for self-sufficiency.
        In a tribal context this is not such a bad thing - the aggregate tribal sufficiency is the measure of survival of the members. There will be peer-pressure forces that maintain the tribal advantage by limiting the degree of specialization.
        However, when the accounting of exchange value becomes necessary, the notion of commodity emerges - it is the value that the tribal body cannot account directly from obvious results.
        The fear of free-loading initiates the process of bean-counting, and the need arises for a unit of measure for "value".
        Once this happens, the commodity of counting quickly crystalizes as the dominant commodity. After that, it is only a few generations before the currency falls into gold or some other non-entropic item.
        The process of agriculture is the medium by which the tribal limit is violated and ensures the rise of commodification and emergence of money.
        Marx talks about value in terms of "socially necessary labour" and divides it into fixed, variable and surplus .. he does this to explain Capitalism .. I don't do that. I define value directly as advantage relative to a "self". And it is expressed as the process of maintaining a self from this moment into the next - otherwise called "survival". But the self might be a tribe or a slime-mould as much as it can be a human or a slime-cell .. or a sub-atomic particle.
        The commodity of a currency is nothing without the conformity of its use.
        My division of currency talks about current, expired and potential. In this way it operates such that current value can be traded in coin, expired coins disappear and potential coins are minted at the point of investment - investment then equates to human promises.
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        May 31 2013: damn this 2000 character reply limit!

        Then you have to examine the reality of human promises.
        Currently, they are defined as law - immutable and blind. But in reality, no human owns the future and all promises are lies.

        It is in this gap between iron-clad law and the reality of promises that Wall street is obligated to be the epitome of lies - they have no choice but to deviate from reality to the absolute extent of their power - to promise the most unlikely. If you read Taleb, you will see how this becomes the discipline of disaster.

        Thus is the rule of law. It is the rule of immortal money which has no past, present or future.
        The lack of the time dimension of currency becomes the attractor of entropy - the elastic force against which the universe has escaped to be manifest.

        The crystal commodity of money is the dissolution of the universe - and it arises from the alienation of self.

        And here is humanity - left with no choice but to bypass all of life on Earth to tap the entropic flux of the sun through solar energy in order to survive .. but human time will stop. At the instant we join with money we integrate with the solar source - and then become it - the fastest entropy in town.

        For myself, I like the journey afforded by not joining the Sun. Solar concerns have no fascination for me. I'm human - and I like being one.

        Here is the formula of the universe:

        not nothing.
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      May 28 2013: Personally, much entertainment appeals to me because of my desire of wonder. Whether it's wondering how someone can move their body in such a way or in such accordance to music or other people, or it's in wonder of how someone can use their voice in so many interesting ways. It's really a wonder of the diversity of humans. For movies, it depends, but it's often the interest in human interactions or the interest in how someone views a particular situation (future, apocalypse, past). Also, just for the joy of laughter (applies to comedians, comedies, etc.).
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        May 29 2013: When you understand what is actually happening in music, dance and the arts, you will realise where the "wonder" comes from.

        It has to do with what perception is.
        Perception is a process of organising sense-data into information relevant to self-survival.
        In humans, this is quite sophisticated - it involved a thing called the autobiographical self (A-self).

        The A-self is simply a model of the core self - it is used for simulations and predictions. In a human being there is an A-self assigned to the personal self and one assigned to every other person that has a relationship with personal self - the human brain can accommodate about 200 such model-pairs fully defined (and a lot more having only partial definition).

        The A-self model is tightly coupled with the regulatory functions of the brain/body - such that whatever happens to one of the A-selves invokes a physical brain/body reaction - otherwise known as "feelings".

        In this way, whenever you hear music or observe dance, there is a part of your brain actually mimicking these sounds or actions as if you are doing it yourself .. in a very useful way, your body actually believes it IS doing these things - all the regulatory responses are being invoked.
        This is the basis of the holistic communication that music, dance and the arts invokes.
        And it is through this process that the arts expresses, and realises, the higher function of community - a thing we call "culture".
        It is very important for social animals to do this - it is the basis of our most intrinsic mechanism of survival: "strength in numbers".
        Culture forms the membrane within which those "numbers" assemble to produce "strength".
        Another name for this definition of culture is "totem".
        If you adhere to the commodification of culture, you actively participate in the dissolution of culture - you may gain some ghost benefit via paid-for performance, but it is a kind of residual self-stimulation which has no mechanism by which to re-capture lost "strength".
  • May 22 2013: Kai,
    in my English class back in high school, we talked about the appreciation of literature according to two schools of thought:
    1. I can appreciate the work, only if I know about the person who wrote it.
    2. I can appreciate the work, without knowing anything about the person who wrote it.

    So essentially, you're asking the same thing: to which school do you belong?
    Is your respect for someone's ability dependent on their personality, or not?

    I belong to school #2. I do not make a point of finding out personal information about artists I appreciate.
    But, when I inadvertently find out personal information about that artist, it has an effect on how I view them individually, but I don't think it has an effect on my appreciation of their artistry.

    I appreciate an artist's work for what it is - artistry - I can be inspired by it and motivated by it.

    Now, about them being role-models or not - leaving aside illegal behavior, if that artist has different outspoken opinions than my own, it will not affect my appreciation for their artistry, but I will most likely not perceive them as a role-model.

    But then again, maybe I'm too old to have role-models?
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    May 22 2013: Personally I expect entertainers to entertain and sportsmen to be good at sport and surgeons to be good at surgery. I also expect parents to teach their children that just because a person is good at one thing doesn't mean they are a good person and should be put on a pdestal, it just means they're good at one thing. Afterall, who do you want doing your heart surgery, that really nice doctor, or the one that's a bit of an a'hole but a brilliant surgeon?
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      May 22 2013: The a'hole, of course.
    • May 22 2013: Peter, I agree with your surgeon example. Unless, of course, the nice one is also brilliant...

      Out of curiosity - do you think a role-model is someone that belongs on a pedestal?
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        May 22 2013: I think we expect too much of "role-models". A great athlete can be a role-model for commitment to training and never giving up, and for that could be "put on a pedestal". But, we need to keep focussed on what it is about this person that we admire and not extrapolate it to worship of the whole person because of one positive trait.
        • May 23 2013: Agreed, Peter.
          At the end of the day, they're 'just people' who have achieved something great.
          I think, your own perception of how great that achievement is, is what will get them onto that pedestal, or not.
          I admire Angelina Jolie for making a controversial, yet life-saving decision to remove her breasts.
          I question Oscar Pistorius's character, despite what he has accomplished as a handicapped athlete.

          How big a role does the media play, in our own perception of these 'role models'? Without it, we would know very little. But because of it, the information we do receive is tainted...
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    May 25 2013: Kai, It all depends on if you aqre will to buy what is being sold. It is all about money ... image .... and sales. You speak of athletes ... have you ever bought a sports jersey ... coat ... t-shirt ... name shoe .... Do you buy the papers on movie stars at the checkout stand ... see a move because XYZ is in it.

    America was sold on Eldrick Tont "Tiger" Woods as the all american good guy and the model citizen and husband ... most of american bought into it ... his stock soared .... he made millions selling everything put in front of him ... guess what he become human.

    These people were selected based on a talent ... the next step was for the agent to make them a household name and associate them with products to make sales jump at both the arena and the stores.

    These people weave dreams and provide entertainment ... anything else is given by you and others .... the media makes stars, presidents, and kings ... if you let them. The choice is really yours.

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    May 24 2013: Whatever these so-called celebrities it music, acting, sports or for that reason anything else..... making them a public figure is the game of media. These celebrities are doing what they ought to do for their own survival. When talking of the entertainment industry.. they are just doing a role play in various capacities.... just as I do my work for my family's survival and growth. Maybe I work better than them in my own field but don't get enough media attention to make me a superstar... Why should my child not follow me and rather follow an actor whom he doesn't know and doesn't live with... and yes ...the actor concerned doesn't even know who my child is????????? This in turn brings to the forefront..that....I as a father MUST be the role-model for my child .... I must be what I would want my child to become ... I must be the dream of my child !!!
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    May 22 2013: It is said that Adolph Hitler was a painter with better-than-average artistic talent. I could not appreciate his works of art because of what I know about how he used his influence during his life. Knowing intimate, personal details about a famous person has an unavoidable influence on people's view of that person. Role models ought to be selected based upon the personal, intimate details of their life. This prevents a cruel, sadistic murderer from being put forth as a model of decency and responsibility. A great second-baseman who is a drunken debaucher should not be honored as a model of behaviour to be followed by America's youth. He is a great baseball player but nothing more. Fame does not a role model make.
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      May 24 2013: Maybe I'm just different, but if Hitler's paintings appealed to me, I'd still buy them and appreciate them. He may have tried to commit genocide, but I'd only be supporting his artistic talents, not his influence in other areas. I think people could have role models for different aspects of their life. So they'd have a mosaic of sorts for a role model. Thanks for the comment, Edward!
  • May 22 2013: Excellence in one area often does not carry over to others.
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    Jun 5 2013: Yes, if you're planning to be an athlete or an artist. Otherwise they're no more relevant (but no less) than you or I.
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    May 31 2013: Hi Kai,
    While those in the entertainment and sports industry have a huge opportunity to be role models, to expect that from them seems kind of silly. They are people living a life outside of their profession. The fact that they are in the spot light, and the media all the time gives them the opportunity, and I suspect those who are good role models, would be that no matter what profession they were in.
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    May 31 2013: No,they are entertainers to expect anything else is ignorant
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    May 29 2013: Good lord No No No! They are actors. Role models should be those who go quietly on with changing the world. It is time to stop the worshipping of celebrities.
  • May 25 2013: I think role models come from life naturally but we can expect...
  • May 23 2013: It only depends on what genre of movie they play in. Actors in child to teenage movies should definitely be role models, because their audience depends on it. Children see, children do. If their roles models are acting irresponsible some of the masses may copy it.
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      May 24 2013: I see where you're going, but I believe it's the parents' ultimate responsibility to teach/inform their kids about role models and entertainers, not the entertainers responsibility to have a ideal personal life. Thanks for the comment, Theo!
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    May 23 2013: Both are responsible.

    Artist as a resposible citizen and
    Parent as responsible head of the family unit.
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    May 22 2013: I tend to think that the player's personal life manifests in their performance, that you can't really compartmentalize your life entirely.
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    May 22 2013: Athletes and artists certainly influence the mind of a youngster and they become role models of a youngster who tend to immitate his or her hero. It does not matter to a youngster that their hero should be appreciated for his or her skills only.

    It becomes important that such an athelete or artist has a responsibility towards the community and their public behaviour should influence young ones always in a positive way.
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      May 23 2013: Is it the athlete or artist's responsinility to control their behavior or is it parent's responsibility to teach their children that just because you sing well or can run fast doesn't make you a good person.
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        May 23 2013: Peter Hi

        Both are responsible.

        Artist as a resposible citizen of the country and the world
        Parent as responsible head of the family unit.
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          May 24 2013: An artist can still be a citizen of a country, but not be a good person. They could be alcoholic or egotistical, and still vote and do all the things a citizen is responsible to do. I think it's the parents' main responsibility to teach their children what Peter said above. Thanks for the comments guys!
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        May 24 2013: I mean to conclude though parent have the main role but a public figure should assume some responsiblity towards the community.
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    May 22 2013: G'day Kai

    For an up & coming entertainer yes but not for main stream society.

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      May 22 2013: Thanks for the comment! I was wondering if you could elucidate your first idea about expectations. Should we not expect certain things from certain people or were you just talking about the entertainment business?