Gerhart Hauptmann Haus, the Other Ostalgie, and the Origins of Becherovka
LTO Quotes Me on the Recent Court Decision on NSA Spying

The News is a Waste of Time, German Edition

I've been following Ralf Dobelli's excellent advice to ignore the news (g) for months now, and have been enjoying it. Any time I accidentally survey the German media landscape, I notice it's clogged with at least 4 categories of uselessness:

No. 1: Ineffectual bloviation (g) In this case, former Chancellor Helmut Schmidt calling for reductions in German weapons exports. Um, not going to happen!

No. 2: Breathless fear-mongering concerning the German urban bourgeoisie's hobbyhorses, such as nuclear power, genetically-modified crops, the death penalty, Facebook, and 'turbo-capitalism'. Remember those heroic workers who embraced certain nuclear death (g) to try to save the Fukushima nuclear plant? They're fine. Remember the rats (somehow) encrusted with horrifying tumors thanks to genetically-modified corn? Study debunked (g). Anytime you read 'catastrophic' in German news, automatically replace it with 'slightly problematic'. Better yet, don't read the news at all.

No. 3: T & A (g). At least this stuff's entertaining!

No. 4: Superfluous profiles of achingly dull German politicians (g). After a cabinet reshuffle, German ministries now have different titular heads, but are still run by the same shadowy functionaries. For vast numbers of the Germans, the 'new' cabinet will have no direct practical consequences at all. And you have no control over what changes actually do affect you, anyway.

The news, honestly: intermittently accurate information about events that don't affect you and over which you have no control.