Guilty Media Pleasure: CNN International

For some the day begins with music, others a commute in their car to work. For me my day begins with the CNN International morning news on Channel 6 in Taiwan. There are a lot of reasons why not to like CNN. It has a very limited world focus. Taiwan is rarely mentioned, even in regards to the weather and Canada is generally ignored. The focus seems to be more on finance and business leaders than culture or the arts.

Nonetheless, I adore CNN. I am addicted to turning it on and hearing about the latest breaking world news story. The Iraq war is a major point of interest. I feel for those troops in Baghdad. The shuffle in the Senate and House of Representatives in the USA was exhilarating, as is watching Condoleeza Rice and Nancy Pelosi the new Speaker of the House. We certainly live in very interesting times. My favorite CNN news anchor is Kristie Lu Stout and reporter Anjali Rao whose take on the news I look forward to seeing in the morning. The program is based in Hong Kong and I know many Taipei residents have Hong Kong envy. If you have ever read the Taipei Times you’ll notice the rival city is described as materialistic and heartless, almost to the point of promoting social dysfunction.

However, I enjoy the CNN focus on Hong Kong and local reports that cover other countries in the region. The situation in Thailand is something I am paying a lot of attention to now. What with the bombings and recent military coup. Moreover, I have started to do a lot of additional reading on Indonesia, a country that I visited once as a teenager. Since that time I have always wanted to return but I am astounded by what I keep hearing about in the news. Indonesia seems to be plagued by disasters and a friend once described it too me as being mismanaged and corrupt.

Overall, I like watching CNN because it provides a foundation from which to filter meaning in global events. Most of us probably don’t view the world from the post-colonial outlook that is supported by advertisers and executives. However, the stories that we do catch and the pictures we do see provide a basis to form our own judgment on happenings that define our times.


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