A provocative critique of how manipulation of media gives rise to disinformation, intolerance, and divisiveness, and what can be done to change direction.
"I've never seen anything like this," said the CEO of CBS in 2016, "this [is] going to be a very good year for us. It's a terrible thing to say. But, bring it on, Donald. Keep going . . . It may not be good for America, but it's damn good for CBS."––The Washington Post
In United States of Distraction, media scholars Nolan Higdon and Mickey Huff offer a well-researched analysis of the essential roles media and journalism should play in a democracy, how years of corporate influence have eroded these roles, and how Trump's media tactics have exploited social vulnerabilities created as a result. The authors focus on how public susceptibility to celebrity entertainment, ultra-partisanship, and social media have been manipulated for political ends, ushering in what many refer to as the "post-truth" era. Higdon and Huff conclude on a note of hope by offering concrete solutions for reforms in media, journalism and education—essential prerequisites for creating a more independent, democratic, and reason-based culture. An impassioned, timely call to action.
Praise for United States of Distraction:
"A war of distraction is underway, media is the weapon, and our minds are the battlefield. Higdon and Huff have written a brilliant book of how we've gotten to this point, and how to educate ourselves to fight back and win."––Henry A. Giroux, author of American Nightmare: Facing the Challenge of Fascism