So, I know my little area of specialist knowledge and interest may seem as trivial to the serious folks as soaps and football results seem to me (and don't get me wrong, I love a good game - ask my long suffering partner - it's just that I don't have any particular allegiance to a team or country). I am a classic 'neutral'.
I do rather badly on trivia quizzes - what's the capital of Norway, who's the president of France, etc. The problem for me is that people who are fully informed about the latest events in the news are also being focussed by that intense beam of media interest - as if there is only one war on, for instance.
So I am not really surprised to hear from the USA that:
"64% of the people interviewed believed that Osoma
Bin Laden came from Iraq and was in Iraq"
"A British professor at the University here in Springfield really couldn't believe that percentage was true so he surveyed his students and found 57% of them believed the same,some even believed the 9/11 terrorists were trained in Iraq."
It would be great if the public was properly informed, but most of us aren't. The only edge that a distracted person like me (who prefers reading books about the past than watching the news) is knowing that I don't know, and so reserving judgement. However, not having an opinion seems to be considered to be negligent, thoughtless and indecisive - which is why the people with simple, clear, unambiguous views often bully their way to the position of power.
Back to the Tao - the only useful guidance I ever found for living under warlords.