March 18, 2005

Media Distractions


A world in which conservatives are satisfied with the media.
From Ben Sargent

You may not be aware of this, but Congress recently passed a gift to the credit card companies that screws over everyone except the super-rich. It goes without saying (doesn't it?) that Republicans supported this 100% and pushed it through. Some Democrats (like Joe Lieberman) pretended to vote against it and pretended to be outraged by it, but decent people weren't fooled, despite most of the media pretending to be too stupid to understand the difference between rhetoric and reality. Of course, these same media will turn around and pretend to be all post-modern when it comes to elections, wondering why people don't seem to care or why the heck politicians are just so slimy (big surprise, there's no one to hold them accountable).

Instead of talking about things that truly influence the financial well-being (and societal well-being) of most Americans, we are treated to hearings about steroids. Big fucking whoop. We are outsourcing torture to countries we supposedly abhor, yet we continue to pretend we are somehow morally or culturally superior to people we look down upon. We are losing brave men and women to a war that never had a purpose and has no end in sight. Every time we "turn a corner" (anyone remember the elections?), it gets worse, not better, and the casualty count accelerates just a little bit more.

We have top officials like Wolfowitz, on record, explaining how the Iraq war and reconstruction would pay for itself, how we wouldn't have (or need) that many troops over there, etc. One after another, they are wrong wrong wrong, so catastrophically wrong that I don't know how they show their faces in public except to assume they have ZERO shame. We have a president concerned about problems with social security (which he admittedly has no plan to address, yet Democrats are being bashed for not providing solutions, only opposition to stupid changes) when his own programs cause budget problems orders of magnitude greater.

But no, under a Republican regime in Congress, we finally have the first notable, heavily covered, Senate hearings since Clinton got his blowjob and everyone got all offended. Over what? Over social security? Iraq? Torture and Abu Ghraib? Treasonous leaks to the media? The deficit?

Nope, a dog and pony show about steroids. Hell, they don't even need to bother with the distraction, what with the Robert Blake/Scott Peterson/Michael Jackson saturation coverage by much of the media. And the Moron Americans lap it up and keep coming back for more.

I hear a lot of talk around college about leadership. All these students want to prove what great leaders they are. They take "leadership" classes or go to "leadership" seminars and retreats. Well, where the fuck is the leadership in the media? About the only leadership I see is the person "brave" enough to stand up and say, "Dammit, I don't care about anything else but our stock price and revenues!" Where is the person in the media world who will stand up and proclaim the need to serve the public interest and not just cover the latest trivial interest of the public?

Where is the person who will dispatch the lazy "on the one hand" reporting and start putting verified (and verifiable) factual assertions into articles unapologetically, without letting the other side try to cloud the issue or smacking them down when they do? A strong and vibrant press is crucial to the survival of our nation. What we have now is a cancer. Tumors like Limbaugh, O'Reilly, Hannity or the rest of the ConservaBorg celebrities are just symptoms.

Posted by Observer at March 18, 2005 07:22 AM
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