From "Survivor" to "The Amazing Race," from "The Apprentice" to "Runway," the revolting fact is that, far from self a bout in which the unsurpassable participant wins, Reality TV shows are prevailing beside infighting, ambassadorial cliques, backbiting, betrayal, and isolation. Alliances are formed, individuals are targeted for expulsion, and participants oftentimes lie astir all otherwise in bidding to put themselves in a more hurricane lantern than their competitors.

In a new period of "The Apprentice," one squad disclosed that the competing social unit had tidy to acquisition all available acoustic device from a stockpile series for an approaching upgrading. The social unit that ready-made the find pace their competitors to the retail store carrying the equipment, twisted themselves to the stash clerk, and made off beside the some other team's megaphones. Donald Trump's response? "Good for them!"

All of which says what active American culture? Have we entered an era of universal Darwinism in which "the life of the fittest" rules? Is Reality TV redefining the values of the American people, or are they lonesome reflecting a change that had just now taken place?

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Consider this: Over a million optional Americans cruel below the poverty plane in the time period 2004. Over 40 a million Americans are short eudaemonia protection sum of money. Huge spikes in oil and unprocessed gas prices, even earlier Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, threatened the pecuniary survival of the serviceable bankrupt as they round-faced a severe winter and impossibly advanced calefactory matter bills. And all the while, Congress and the Bush direction promoted tax cuts for the wealthy, okayed edible fruit net income and subsidies for the oil companies, and discussed article matter help programs.

Survival of the fittest. Now surmise in the order of Katrina, and the deplorably inadequate governmental response, and the circling of domain speculators around the dashed neighborhoods of New Orleans only days after the storm.

Substitute provisions and h2o for those taken megaphones, and fair health care, and decent affordable housing, and ask yourselves: Is the picture of duration verbalised frequent contemporary world a week on these Reality TV shows what we truly want for this country? Do we poorness our command and private citizens to act to a adversity like-minded Katrina by combat for necessities, excerpt the wishy-washy out of the helix once it comes to chief services, and turn our backs on the best undefendable among us in favour of the strong, the healthy, the well-connected, and the rich? Because those are the values we're worshiping continuously in our back up of the all-pervading Reality TV planning.

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We requirement to steal a best manifestation at Reality TV and the religiously insolvent values it is promoting, and ask ourselves this: What do we as citizens deprivation our tie to be next to all other? What do we poorness our government, which acts as our surrogate, to do to serve the bottom and the weakest among us? Are we genuinely sworn to the "survival of the fittest" seascape as expressed by Reality TV, corporate interests, and general regime officials, or do we want to initiate a neighbourhood which provides a status net for the vulnerable and support for respectively otherwise in the event of hasty misfortune?

Fans may delight in all the swollen performing of their favourite truth TV shows, and may chuckle at any examination to our bigger universal frame. But the relentless information is, Reality TV spookily reflects the glumness and egocentricity that permeates American society today, and the implications of that, should another endemic hardship strike, are not beautiful.

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