Sunday, September 24, 2006

Fear Greed and Infotainment vs. The Press

See this piece in the Arizona Daily Star, by a David Cuillier, a former newspaper reporter and editor, and current vice chairman of the national Society of Professional Journalists' Freedom of Information Committee.

Some details and comments about BushCo paying journalists to spread propaganda are mentioned. Also, some details about the Press' duty to speak out, and newspaper companies gradually sliding away from the press' function as a check on government and industry misdeeds.

I think what caught my eye about this op-ed piece is the tendency of some people to believe assertions that basically anyone who questions the current administration is somehow helping "the terrorists" or actually on the side of religious fundamentalists who wish to harm our country. Of course what shows such assertions to be utter bullshit is that there is no motivation for anyone questioning BushCo to side with destructive religious psychos from foreign nations. We have enough destructive religious psychos here, not quite as militant as the overseas version, calling themselves Christians, and doing a big insult to Christianity in the process, anyway. Anybody who's not a few bricks short of a load, for example those that are fed up with the lying and cheating of the Bush Administration, would never be on the same side as the morons of the ultraconservative religious right of any nationality.

But my point is that people can act like they believe whatever Cheney says, and whatever the so-called Conservatives have been saying since the Reagan days, when the Conservatives started wishing to get in control, and devote the government to serving large corporations and a handful of rich business leaders, rather than our own country, its own people, its environment and its infrastructure.

The writer of the article points to fear as motivation for folks to rally around something, anything, blindly. So no wonder the Vice President and other hired mouthpieces like O'Reilly, and, I guess, the President, keep having to dredge up new demons for people to fear. Outlining threat after threat, they keep picking more and more on people right here at home, usually their political opponents, often those of diverse social backgrounds who don't attend the correct church.

You can read the comments section of about any story in the Star, and see the few people whose duty is to hammer away at the actually very conservative paper, calling it again and again "The Red Star." Usually comments are tinted with xenophobia, racism, hatred, and form an amalgam of whatever kind of drivel you can hear well-paid conservative mouthpieces spout on just about any "news" show. You can't really call anything about that section of current events info "press." You can't really call it info because most of it is lies, the rest of it is twisted truth, and the overall function is to divide and conquer by covering up the truth, and to intimidate with the threat of playground-style name-calling into unquestioning silence.

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