When I stay at my parents’ house for the holidays it’s always interesting to see what’s on tv because I don’t watch American television shows very much. So it’s eye-opening to see what ads are being shown to the Southern Californian tv-viewing audience.

As far as ads are concerned, it’s all about new cars and new drugs. I can’t believe how many there are! Ford Sellathon, Toyatathon, Happy Honda Days, Mercedes Benz Winter Event, Chevy Families, etc. And the drug commercials – I can’t keep up with all the creative names, but the trend seems to be skincare/psoriasis this year, and diabetes is always high on the playlist.

I just finished the book A Thousand Miles to Freedom: My Escape from North Korea, and the author describes life in the totalitarian state and the brainwashing they North Korean regime inflicts on its people with its strict control of access to information. I keep thinking of the tv (which seems to be constantly on) here at my parents’ house and the words and images always streaming out of it. It’s a different kind of brainwashing, but easy to see the similarities.

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