Friday, January 14, 2011

American Fairytale

Ted Williams was a homeless man who held a weathered cardboard sign in his hands that said “I have a God-given gift of voice.” A reporter happened to see the panhandler and interviewed him. The video from that encounter placed on youtube received more than twelve million hits in the last days and is the most-watched video on  youtube today.
The man’s voice is amazing and Americans love a good redemption story.Ted Williams says in the video that he used to be addicted to drugs but he’s been clean for two years now, yet still unable to get a job. Last week he received offers from all over the country. He also was invited to various tv shows.
That's the end of the fairytale, but not the end of the story. Ted Williams was detained, and then released by Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), after he got into a heated argument with his daughter Monday night at the RenaissanceHollywood Hotel & Spa where he stayed on occasion of a tv appearance. His daughter accused him of drinking and becoming violent again.
There are a lot of things in that story that make you think. One of them: How much must a daughter hate her father to publicly tear the veil from his reality.


  1. Berlusconi became a public figure in 1994. One of the things which in my opinion has very much contributed to his success (and still is giving him strength) is his voice! What is incredible is, that in a time when every aspect concerning media is believed to be considered with overflowing attention, noone seems to have ever considered the effect of his master's voice.

    The second thing to which this american fairytale does direct my attention is how schematic the collective cognitive behaviour can become in well organized highly sociologicized countries in which every behaviouristic detail is scanned, recorded and reported and this scanning, recording and reporting generates first homogenization and then emotional waves of the homogene collective heart which the media professionals will translate into the formula "We need illusions to tear them apart".

    I was startled already in the 80-ties when I discovered how much my own feelings of a specific moment appeared 1 or 2 years later in a german commercial. I then realized for the first time how much my most private awarenesses - even living abroad, in a very different country, without german TV and without the internet!!! - were part of a collective emotional process occuring in Germany...

    The strength of southern countries like Italy, Mexico and Iran and Turkey is that the voluntary, pliable Gleichschaltung does not occure as much as in northern countries. Not because those southern countries are prouder than americans or more individualistic, but because they simply are not and never will be so "well organized".

  2. Golden voice? It´s a low voice due to the deliberate damage to his vocal cords.