Sunday, 25 February 2007

Celebrate Celebrities....or not

It's the eve of the Oscars so thought what better time than now to have a dig at the celebrities - everyone else is! The definition of celebrities seems to be wide ranging now days. It appears anyone in the public eye is deemed a celebrity, from politicians to musicians, sports stars to actors, business tycoons to heiresses. The only thing you really need to become a celebrity would appear to be money, a name and a touch of insanity.

I avoid as much celebrity "news" as I possibly can (I am a chronic channel surfer thanks to this!) as they really don't interest me. Yet somehow I know that Anna-Nicole Smith died recently and Britney Spears has shaved her hair off (before or after rehab I'm unsure of). For some reason these two incidents have been of enough major importance to warrant them news items on a global scale. On the local(ish) scene, the USA Vice President was in Australia for the last few days on a promotional trip which was intended to be beneficial for both the American Republican party and the Australian Liberal Party. Being an election year, I'm sure this trip down under had more to do with PR than global politics. The media reinforced this idea by reporting more on Dick's activities and functions than on what was actually being discussed by these two power-house leaders of the free world.

Anna Nicole Smith died on Feb 8 2007. So did Florence Melton (philanthropist, entrepreneur, lecturer, yoga teacher and poet) and Nelson Polsby (political scientist at UC Berkeley whose books and commentaries focused on how political institutions evolve). I knew neither of these people, nor have I read any of their works - in fact, they are 2 random names pulled from a Google search matching obituaries for 8 Feb 2007. However, it seems to me that these 2 deceased persons are more noteworthy than Anna Nicole Smith yet not by media standards. I suppose it is fortunate for the families of the 2 non-celebrity persons that the media was not turning their passing into a circus.

Britney Spears shaved her head on 16 Feb 07. I wonder how many members of the armed forces also shaved their heads on 16 Feb 07? And why the media deems a has-been, talentless head-case shaving her head more newsworthy than the men and women posted overseas doing the same thing? I guess Britney Spears must be more important.....

Lastly, yankee-Dick's trip down under. To protect this global treasure, Australian taxpayers forked out $2M(AU) for members of our police force to act as body-guards. The government also deemed it necessary to close off Sydney Harbor Bridge so Dick could drive across it safely. I'm sure his one glance out the window between briefing papers was worth it. Last time I checked, there were only 6 stars on the Australian flag.

Maybe I'm wrong. The media and the government seem adamant that these events warrant incredibly close scrutiny and attention that they must be of major significance to the lives of all. Or maybe, as the good Rabbi Shmuley Boteach says, "In an age without God we create God" and these are the new gods.


Songs played while writing this entry:
"Deeper" Barabas & OD1
"Standing On The Outside" Cold Chisel
"Not For You" Pearl Jam
"Freak Momma" Mudhoney & Sir Mix-a-Lot
"No Sense" Cold Chisel
"Work That Mutha" Steve Poindexter
"Boss Dub" The Shamen
"Access" DJ Misjah & DJ Tim
"LSD" DJ HMC
"Under The Bridge" Red Hot Chili Peppers

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