The government announced today the formation of a new parliamentary committee to examine the possible harmful effects of the news on the population.
Reports in recent weeks from various academic sources have shown what many have suspected for decades: that TV News is addictive. Every day millions of people, hooked on the news, get their fix. They tune in at any opportunity to get a glimpse of events that they have no control over.
Cases have been reported of people who watch multiple news programs every day, channel hopping to get an uninterrupted flow of news. Some even watch 24 hour news channels, finding them 'more convenient'.
Researchers are perplexed as to the reason for the addiction.
"What we found interesting is that the addiction does not seem to depend on the content of the news", said Nicks Wises, a research assistant at the Institute for Irrational Human Behavior. "It really does not matter what the news is about. Whether its a kitten stuck in a tree; a budget that threatens the entire social fabric of the country or a nuclear war, viewing figures remain stable."
Some consider that the addiction is harmless, and just part of learning about the world. "The most important lesson that I think people learn from watching the news about the world, is the futility of trying to change it", said Lofty Vino Mires from the status quo pressure group Stay Under Thumb. "The last thing that this world needs is people getting out of their homes, socializing, making plans and working together in communities. It's the kind of behavior that causes civil unrest, and quite frankly if complete addiction to repetitive, recurring, mundane and fearful news is the price for a bit of "Tranquilité", then it's a fine price worth paying", Mires added.
The parliamentary committee is due to report back to the government on November 11 of next year, where its conclusions will be revealed at the same time as a major news story about a cabinet minister accused of having an affair, should the conclusions not be in line with government thinking.