Most news items are disturbing. That is why I don’t watch news channels and rather spend time reading books that are at least 80 years old. Those books don’t hurt you.
This is true especially of the financial news. The hostesses speak as though the markets are either about to go through the roof or are going to land in the Marina Trench in the Pacific Ocean – either of that should be most probably happening on the same day. That is how these anchors behave. Hence I stopped watching the only news items – the financial news – that I was watching for some time. Regular prime time news items are a strict no-no since the day Arnob Goswami and his cohorts started screaming at everybody And you have the shouting-on-the-top Barka Dutt who specializes in barking. Now her place has been taken over by some other barkers, I hear.
After having heard and watched Arnob Goswami and the NDTV shout brigades, I have come to a conclusion : The participants and the audience for these chat shows should have been married for many years so that they don’t feel out of place either in their homes or in the studios where they are subject to such unbearable verbal admonition by the anchors.
Then the American channels that seem to specialize in the art of public deception to the extent that the anchors feel deceived by what they utter themselves. CNN and Fox ensured that in America too the world was the same with shouting anchors, henpecked participants and dumb viewers. Later the American TV viewing was limited to the financial news programs. And thus I became an agnostic. Such “Telling Lies” would ensure a permanent place in hell next to Saddam Hussein. That completed my trials and tribulations and my TV time came to a crashing end.
So for a change, I started reading financial news. Oh My God, how do they utter such falsehood in print ? Let us look at an example : Country ABC’s Inflation is headed north, reports XYZ bank’s analyst. ABC’s Finance Minister says in the same paper that the food prices are at an all time low as the inflation has come down substantially. And in the third page there is an action initiated by the country’s financial authority on certain transactions of XYZ bank. And on day two XYZ bank’s analyst from another country provides a favorable report on country ABC’s inflation and economy. Two days pass by and the financial regulator finds no irregularities in XYZ banks’ transactions and that their inquiry was just ‘procedural’. And as a stupid common man, I have to read all this and believe in both the bank and the country’s Finance Minister.
Look at what was done in India. The country’s economy has slowed down ( Let us not go into the factors ). The Harvard and Oxford educated economists that are at the helm could not help the slow down and hence the falling currency. There was such a drastic fall that the currency lost 25% of its value in a matter of months. So the powers that be decided that their stocks need a boost and they wanted to exit the market once the market is made to recover to a certain extent. In comes an MIT educated financial regulator. And the media goes mad at this person. An economy of more than a billion people spoiled by the political class for the last ten years is supposed to be revived by a new regulator. And there is a frenzied build up in the media and the usual suspects start barking the whole day from small boxes from TV screens. And the market goes up marginally when the powers that be withdraw their funds and invest elsewhere. And as a common man I watch all this with a feeling of resignation.
There was this recent episode recently – the imminent attack on Syria by the US. All markets suffered. Oil prices sky rocketed. Gold prices also skyrocketed. Developing countries’s banks increased interest rates, their countries’ financial regulators announced slew of measures to strengthen their dollar reserves. Thus US dollar’s value increased substantially and after a certain climactic situation when the “powers-that-be-‘s financial status improved as a result of a surging dollar, the Syrian attack was put on the back burner owing to ‘peace’ initiatives. The loser – the usual developing economies. The point here is the plethora of “analysis” in the financial papers by ‘experts’ on the trends in oil, commodities and currency markets and the need to hedge one’s risk in these aforementioned products in the weeks prior to the “peace” initiative.
So the result – no more financial papers as well.
Therefore I read – at least 80 year old books that don’t tell lies.