Friday, January 04, 2008

The Cultural Blind Spot

So go on then, guess what happened. I was watching Newsnight, for the first time in several months, and a report came up on the Republican contest in the Iowa Caucuses. Intrigued, I stayed tuned in to watch. Guess which five Republican candidates were named! Or more pertinently, guess which one wasn't!

I don't even think it's deliberate. There's no real axe to grind about Ron Paul, here in the UK, but there's just this huge cultural blind spot sitting right over him. He's not big government, he doesn't plan any massive government campaigns to change the world, and all he wants is for everyone to just get on with their lives without being interfered with by busy bodies. He is therefore hugely uninteresting to US-based news staffers at the BBC, who report on these things, who see the world as one great socialist experimenting dish; the bigger the government plan, the better.

Oh how I hope the Good Doctor can win in New Hampshire. It'll be like Terry Pratchett's book Mort, where the main character changes the future to stop people dying, and nobody in the rest of society can then see these 'death cheaters', as they were expected to be gone. The BBC will talk about who came second, third, fourth, fifth, or even sixth like they did tonight (without mentioning who came fifth), but they just won't be able to acknowledge the existence of the winner.

It will be very odd indeed. Let's just hope it happens so we can then witness their hilarious non-reaction.

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