Friday, February 22, 2013
This week, the story that leads the news cycle (and, not coincidentally, leads our show) is the looming sequester. With Congress seemingly at an impasse, Republicans are demanding significant cuts in government spending, while Democrats are demanding an increase in tax revenues. Being that I play video games and find partisan congressional hackery so boring I could die, I naturally focused in on the one gaming story that has anything to do with the sequester.
Earlier this week U.S. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor posted a note on his website citing specific examples of government waste. Among them: "The National Science Foundation spent $1.2 million paying seniors to play 'World of Warcraft' to study the impact it had on their brain." The claim was quickly picked up by other Republicans as a talking point, with House Speaker John Boehner writing "no one should be talking about raising taxes when the government is still paying people to play videogames, giving folks free cellphones, and buying $47,000 cigarette-smoking machines."
World of Warcraft? What is this study? How can I get on board?