Friday, October 09, 2009

Where Rebellion Really Lies

My dislike of television is well-known by people who are close to me. But I haven't turned the radio on a great deal either since I started writing again with anything like the seriousness it demands.

Why? It's because the babbling voices on the radio are the voices of consensus in its various forms. They have to be to acquire enough listeners to keep their stations afloat. Who wants to listen to radio that isn't about them?

But consensus is the enemy of creativity. You have to think your own thoughts, live in your own centre, to write well, not adopt the same mind as everybody else.

Think I'm being arrogant? Listen to the cliches of everyday speech they use, which are exactly the same as the cliches you hear at the bus stop.Listen to the assumptions of a shared position in the opinions they offer. Think about the topics they cover on the stations that pretend to some kind of objectivity.

It's all pitched towards a great mass of people who are assumed to be out there, lumbering through their lives in a pack like wet oxen.

The only radio station where you don't hear the voice of consensus anymore is Radio Three. Popularly presumed to be the soothing voice of the Establishment.

High culture is strictly for the minority these days, I suggest. The people running (and ruining) the world probably don't even know who Puccini or Kreisler are anymore.

The Establishment since the Thatcher era has been made up of rapacious philistines in business suits listening to white rock on their mp3 players, and using spell checks on their computers to work out where their apostrophes go.

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