The real issue in the debate question

The real issue in the debate question
The folderol over CNN “planting” a question at the Rock The Vote debate last week contains an important lesson in understanding Postmodernism and, more importantly, the foolishness of applying Modernist “command and control” tactics with Pomos. Most of the attention this is getting involves the ethics of the matter, but that misses the point, in my judgment. Alexandra Trustman, the Brown University student who asked a question written by CNN producers, said she was “confused about the question’s relevance,” to which the producer answered that it would give the politicians a chance to relate to young voters. To the Postmodernist, that translates to, “We know better than you what young people want to learn about these candidates.” The arrogance boggles the mind. While the network says all other questions were written by the attendees, the truth is the producers selected the questions to use, including the one in which the candidates were asked which of their rivals they would most like to party with. The young woman who asked that question says she submitted several, some serious and some lighthearted, and that the producers selected that one.

What strikes me here is the belief that in order to produce a show that’s appealing to young people (while maintaining their place as a news authority), CNN felt they had to control the content of the entire debate. It has blown up in their faces as just more evidence of elitist authority. This is an essential truth that broadcasters must understand: Postmodernism will not be controlled, and relinquishing even some control will be the toughest door through which TV News operations will have to pass in order to successfully do news in a Postmodern World.

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