“Truth is beautiful, without a doubt; but so are lies.” That quote from Waldo Emerson comes to mind when the monthly bill to pay for cable television arrives in the mailbox. The commercial subscribers pay to endure an ever-increasing cost for what used to be free.
Blame is always a great American pastime, because it makes noise without accomplishing anything. The first order of blame always falls on the incredibly high costs, which are ever increasing, purchasing entertainment programming. The cable companies, to provide the cable viewer with a vast array of subject choices twenty-four hours a day, assume these costs. However, to make a profit, the cable company passes those costs, along with maintenance equipment, technicians, office employees, etc ., and all day-to-day business expenses, on to the consumer. Those costs are substantial; even so, the largest part of the equation is programming expenses.
As in professional sports, where athletes make tremendously inflated salaries, so large that even the overpriced cost of tickets, cannot cover the salaries. The day of the two-dollar bleacher seats, for the poor kids from the inner city to spend a positive afternoon off the streets, is nothing more than a gone-by romantic notion of another era. Actors, like sports figures demand an ever larger slice of the financial pie of any production. The cost needs picked up by somebody, or it would be too expensive for even the wealthiest Americans to watch TV, and the industry would collapse.
Thank God for advertisements, and the huge influx of money the companies, players, actors, and the entire system receives, to keep programming alive and well [he said facetiously]! The advertising dollars make it possible for cable providers, networks, and all associated, from a business point of view, to make a tremendous income. The viewer can numb his brain, for an endless amount of hours, with an almost unlimited amount of programming. The company providers and advertisers are counting on the viewer numbing-out, watching the ever larger and more sophisticated high quality HD television programming, on five thousand dollar state-of-the-art receivers. It seems like a win, win situation, but things are often not as they appear.
The cable companies and all TV providers have a love hate relationship, with the billing cycle. They love the vast sums of money they make with virtually no competition. They love that the lack of competition, and the huge amounts of money the advertisers pay, overrides First Amendment, and Fourth Amendment rights of American families, who are too numbed out to know they are being over-charged, and their Constitutional Rights are being violated. They [the program providers] hate that the bill might, although it has never happened in the past, might just wake the people up! Wake the people to the facts! They are being sucked dry intellectually, and paying a tremendous amount of money for the privilege.
The amount of money an entertainer or athlete can make is another discussion, concerning the decadence of the American society. The fact that a cable television company can charge upwards of fifty dollars a month, to show programming ruined by an ever-increasing amount of commercials, spoiling any dramatic effect originally created in the original movie is sad. The fact that the largest sporting event on American television has time outs, based on commercial needs, without regard to the rules of the game is sad. The fact that with hundreds of programming choices the American people still have their First Amendment violated, is sad. The commercial money dictates what is seen and heard, and not the viewer, which is very sad. The fact that the Fourth amendment right against unreasonable search is violated, without complaint, by compiling your viewing patterns and selling the information to those who want to target specific watchers of specific programs, to specific advertisements is sad.
The saddest thing of all is the reason this can happen is because no one cares enough to stand up and fight. The day all the cable viewers decide the bill is too high, and collectively decide to pay less or none at all until control is returned to the viewer, is only the people’s will away. How long would a cable network hold out against all the people? No country in the world has ever won when all the American people are in support of something. The thought that a cable television company could deny the will of the American customers is ludicrous. Money talks and everything else walks. Americans have always paid their way, their fair share, and will continue to pay for services offered. The question here are services any longer rendered. If so, at what cost are these services? If the cost is too high, then the consumer has options, such as continue to lose Constitutional rights, and pay whatever cable companies in collusion with advertisers’ demand, or stop paying, and demand proper service at a proper cost. The rate at which advertising, is eating into the market, and continuing to destroy programming, by putting in too many commercials per half-hour of viewing, thank God, there are good books to read.