As political talking points near to its grimmest stage in this election, and as breaking news of oil corruption surface along with internet and media rumors about Both Obama and Sarah Palin’s faith and position, one might assume from 4 years ago that the citizens of the US are defensive. Far from it.

Record numbers have tuned into media outlets, millions more have voted for the first time in the primaries than ever before, and everyone fifteen year old to eighty is online to tell us about it. And in this time of political backlash and attack ads, the US is alive with opinions and commentary from everyone including the average citizen to Matt Yglesias

There are comments everywhere on blogs providing opinions on the biggest rumors the web can offer, and writers are accepting and answering them. For once people now have a credible voice, whether its Russell Brand or me, Politico or CNN. It’s true that political swiftboats, sexism, racism, and blatant lies still exist, but there are people talking about them.

So what would we call this? It’s change. Republican or Democrat, left or right wing, Green or Libertarian, this is change, and there is no denying it. 

I think Barack Obama should be elected president, and there are people who think John McCain should be elected as well. And with fifty-five days to choose that, America’s got a heck of a lot more negotiating and arguing to do. But at least we are. At least someone pointed out the youtube videos of Sarah Palin speaking at her church and Jerimiah Wright blasting the US in his, and at least Bob Salsbury made his joke. 

So if there’s one thing we can all agree on, its that disagreeing with each other is what will get a better president in the oval office, it is what will fix our economy and debt — it is change, no matter how you look at it.

Celebrities are now facing the truth, and it isn’t pretty. Gossip has turned it up a notch, and now there is nowhere to hide. Big paparazzi agencies have patched up their main weakness — failing to be anywhere, anytime. Before, agencies would hire a small group of professional photographers and brief them of where the stars would be, but it was a double-edged sword. The pictures they got we’re high quality and high definition, and worthy of the front page of any magazine to hit the shelves. But their main weakness was their inability to be everywhere, and it cost them. For example, when they were taking pictures of one celebrity coming out of church, they were risking missing another, for example, getting arrested or something more newsworthy or, as the kids would say in more of an “OMG” demand. But this hole was covered recently, as some person in high places somewhere in a gossip agency had a genius idea: give disposable cameras to thousands of people in a big city, say, New York or Los Angeles, and have them scour the streets for celebrities, take a picture, and then hustle back to the office where they started and get a reward, ranging in cash by how good the picture was, and who it was taken of. One paparazzi boss is even giving rewards to the general public for snap happy cell phone pictures. Darryn Lyons, founder of Big Pictures, set up a mobile phone website that lets you upload cell phone pictures to his agency directly from your phone. That’s why you are now accustomed to seeing cover shots on gossip magazines that are obviously not professional, some even blurred or distorted. This new style has taken the stars by surprise, people who claim to be “devoted fans” now can whip out their Blackberry and get a picture of them which the next day may be on the cover of OK or US. But its not like the celebrities aren’t going down without a fight. Angelina Jolie made a valiant effort to escape the never ending US paparazzi attack force by making an escape to (where else) but Namibia (for those who aren’t geography buffs, its in Africa) to have her baby. She and husband Brad Pitt went to this remote country for the birth for a number of reasons, but a big one being they wanted to get rid of all paparazzi. During the period of the birth, all traces of gossip in Namibia were banished and the country made sure no Americans could enter the country that could be a paparazzi. And with the help of closing off an entire country, no press could cover the story. All the poor paparazzi agencies could find was one small leak from a Namibian nurse who gave the plain remarks “She is a healthy baby.” Her remarks were anonymous because she was not authorized to release any information. And in truth, no one was, not even Namibian officials said a word about the birth. Jolie’s counter-punch to the growing paparazzi in the US was a ray of hope to all celebrities, but as the War on Paparazzi continues, all a curious spectator can do is watch, and laugh. 

 

Articles used: http://people.howstuffworks.com/paparazzi.htm

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2008/jul/03/darryn.lyons

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/13006217/

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