I have a lengthy post up about media, torture, and triviality over at Upturned Earth. I think it's one of my better posts in awhile, although others may differ.
So, why is there so little demand for substance and so much demand for vapidity? The troubling answer, I suspect, is that we - as a society, culture, and even as a species - are terribly uncomfortable with accepting responsibility for our own collective and individual judgments. It is much easier to blame our problems and
social or cultural failures on individual "rogue" politicians, businessmen, athletes, or celebrities than it is to question our own role in creating the culture that allows those supposed "rogues" to thrive. Above all else, we cannot bring ourselves to question the fundamental health of the systems in which we most believe.
As they say, read the whole thing. Comments are open there.