I may not speak for many people, but I'm sure I speak for a few when I say I really don't need updates on Bret Michaels' condition on the front page of cnn.com. First, I remember this guy from an 80's glam metal band. They sucked. Second, I understand vaguely that he participates in every b or c list stars favorite nostalgia vehicle, the celebrity reality show. I have no idea what his particular show is about except that it has put him back in the news.
In the age of infotainment, a field in which CNN can take credit as being pioneers, I suppose this tripe is what passes for news. Forget any deep analysis of actual problems in the world, like Greece's financial collapse or Arizona's draconian unconstitutional immigration law -- too complicated and not nearly sexy enough to spend time on.
In a literate society, CNN and Fox and every other cable news channel should essentially be the equivalent of supermarket tabloids, ridiculed for their emphasis on celebrity scandal and death and not seen as trusted news sources. As for anyone who points out that the Nat'l Enquirer first broke the story of John Edwards' affair...well, who gives a shit? They first broke Gary Hart's affair etc....they excel in scandal. That's what they do. That's all they do. It'd be like lauding Rolling Stone or Pitchfork for being the first to report on a band's latest release.
Christ, the waning days of empire are tough.