The Relevance of Howard Beale

I saw a TV commercial this morning that reminded me of that scene in the movie Network where a TV news anchor told his listeners to go to their windows and yell at the night saying that they were mad and were not going to take it any more. That movie was made 35 years ago but Beale's rant yet resonates with some today. Consider these excerpts from his rant:
I don't have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad. ... Everybody's out of work or scared of losing their job. The dollar buys a nickel's worth, banks are going bust ... We know things are bad - worse than bad. They're crazy. It's like everything everywhere is going crazy ... I want you to get mad! I don't want you to protest. I don't want you to riot - I don't want you to write to your congressman because I wouldn't know what to tell you to write. I don't know what to do about the depression and the inflation and the Russians and the crime in the street. All I know is that first you've got to get mad.
I have to admit that under my neatly composed exterior I am mad about where America is today. I am mad about how the outsourcing and insourcing of jobs have caused my friends to be unemployed. I am mad that the state of my grandchildren's world is being decided by a bunch of adult children in DC that seems to be so out of touch with reality. I am mad that the divide between rich and poor in our country has widened rather than narrowed. I am mad that bankers on wall street get bailed out while folks on main street are ignored. Lastly, I am mad that people who I have voted for since 1980 have done nothing to help the unborn.

Before you tell me to take a chill pill and not worry so much, I want to assure you that these things do not captivate my attention all of the time - I do have a life and my days are filled with other things. Yet I think that my thoughts, and those of Howard Beale,  might resonate with some people in our country. Are you mad about anything? Care to share?


  1. I don't think getting mad accomplishes anything.

    The solution is found in work (in the physical) and love and faith (in the spiritual), not in anger.

    I don't think the answer will come from DC. Why? Because they all both left and right are blinded to the truth by their need for more and more money.

    The answer will come on the grass roots level of people working with their neighbors. And doing things for themselves and not looking to the government for help.

  2. You may be right Scott. Yet I wonder if we would think of the Pharisees (the congressmen of Jesus' days) in a better light if Jesus was not in their face so much.. and I think those money changers (the lobbyists of his time) experienced a bit of Jesus' anger. :)

  3. OK, I can't argue with Jesus. Does authority that Jesus had play a part in Jesus' anger? (Him being the Lord of the universe.)

    If we get angry with people we are unaffiliated with what will it accomplish?

  4. Not sure? Maybe the Jesus in us rises up sometimes when we see religious hypocrisy and people making loads of dough from the gospel?

    Not sure that my being mad will amount to anything except when I vote. But I do think there have been some that have taken their anger (like the founder of MADD) and did something productive with it.


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