Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television
by Jerry Mander
(Amazon link)

1. "Eliminates personal knowledge." Television filters experience and gives us the sense that we have experienced many things that we haven't. We respond like we have been there and seen it all first hand, but we haven't.

2. "Eliminates points of comparison." Television represents regular, everyday Americans in an affluent society, where everyone lives in mansions and has BMWs. The child in the ghetto watching this display has no basis for comparison, so she believes that most other Americans have fulfilled the American Dream of Materialism, and somehow her family was passed by or unfairly excluded.

3. "Separates people from each other." Television does this task effectively. People don't have to go out to be entertained. As the family watches TV they are not interacting. They are each having a separate experience, cut off from developing social skills and a sense of community that must be in the home before we can have it again on the streets of our neighborhoods.

4. "Centralizes knowledge and information." Television does this dirty deed better than most of us realize. We don't hear about many instances of corporate abuse of people, resources, or the environment. Why? Because we don't want to offend the sponsors. We don't hear about the mistakes and self-serving decisions of many politicians, because the news reporters don't want to lose access by reporting damaging information. Another example of this centralizing of knowledge is who owns and controls the networks. Rupert Murdoch, billionaire publisher and media magnate, already controls information spigots world-wide. If he is allowed to add to his conglomerate, most of the world would only see, read, or hear the news that Rupert Murdoch and his executives want us to receive.