Thursday, February 07, 2008

I'll Drink to That


A real laugher this morning on NPR. Alex Spielgel reports on the promotion of "the family dinner" as discouraging drug use and overall antisocial behavior. Spielgel opens the piece with this:

"....another public figure lent a familiar name to the [family dinner] cause (sound clip from a PSA featuring George W. and the mean-spirited Barbara Bush)....In this public service announcement Barbara Bush goes on to explain that children who eat with their parents are less likely to end up with a drug, cigarette or alchohol habit. Now research has shown that children who eat with their parents are less likely to struggle with substance abuse. The question at issue is only this: does the dinner itself offer some magical protection or is there something else at work."

Whoa. Wait. Stop the train. Surely Spiegel is going to skewer this asinine bit of advertising served up by the Family Day folks at Columbia University. Seriously, could there be a more laughable spokesperson than the compassionate Barabara Bush laying claim to the benefits of family dinners? Yep, the cozy Bush dinners worked wonders on keeping George off the bottle and perhaps snorting a few lines, too. It also helped set the model for Jeb's little family meals. Ah yes, the Bushes, what a fine family!

You might think Spiegel, with her work on this American Life, might have been a tad embarrassed to embed this clip in her piece without even a nod to its bitter irony, but this was Morning Edition after all.


5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Another reason why I'm listening to NPR less and less. Why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that?

Porter Melmoth said...

Indeed, the absolute clutter of useless broadcast time-filler that NPR has inflicted on us over the centuries is one of the great shames I have had to endure. Because it is a humiliation to admit that I actually devoted my attention to it. Looking back, I reckon that maybe 10-15% of it was actually of value, although that's highly debatable, of course. As if it needs explanation, part of my mocking rage is due to: I WANT MY WASTED TIME BACK! Oh, and I WANT MY MONEY BACK, TOO!!

I am glad to see though, that Barbara has been claimed as an American possession.

big!pink!fuzzy!bunny! said...

Mmmm! NPR McPablum in a deep roast with a froth on top!

Anonymous said...

Is that excreble Scott Simon still doing ME? Haven't listened to NPR for years...

big!pink!fuzzy!bunny! said...

^ Alas. SOMEBODY must like him (somewhere?).