I believe people today are overwhelmed. Overwhelmed with information, communication, status and wealth expectations, media, and news. Too much technology moving too quickly for most to keep up, news from all over the world rather than nationally.
In the 1983 you had 4 analogue TV channels, video recorders, AM and FM, a telephone, and if you were on the cutting edge, a ZX Spectrum home computer.
In 2006 you have hundreds of digital TV channels (satellite, cable, digital terrestrial, terrestrial, online), all wanting you to vote or text, interactive TV, VCRs, DVDs, PVRs, PCs, Macs, laptops, PDAs, mobile phones, Blackberry, CDs, minidiscs, MP3s, DAB, FM, AM, the internet, emails, SMS, bluetooth, wi-fi
It's an awful lot of duplication of things really, isn't it?