The Media Whorehouse
These whores (no offense to real sex workers) are for your pleasure. Oh, don’t worry, they’re paid for. You couldn’t afford them, anyway. These are not cheap hookers, even if the service they provide seems like it. Their sugar daddies are GE, big Oil, Gas & Coal, the defense industry, and the health insurance mafia, to name the biggest gate-keepers to the information we’re allowed to receive. Of course, cheap hookers often have drug problems, so the Pharmaceutical companies befoul the airwaves like a plague of locusts. Oh, we must be on the air; the red light just came on.
It wasn’t always thus. Originally, in order to maintain a license to broadcast on the people’s airwaves, the FCC required broadcasters to provide news as a public service. News divisions always lost money, that was a given. They more than made up for it with entertainment programming. Then in the 1970s, the entertainment and news divisions merged, their bastard child was what we have now, infotainment. The 1996 Telecommunications Act, signed by President Clinton, sealed the deal.
Keep in mind that the “press”, which today includes electronic media, was the only profession given Constitutional protection; in the First Amendment. The Founders knew that without a free press, an open, democratic society cannot exist. TV news especially has, well, squandered is too soft a word. They have taken this precious gift and pissed all over it. I offer some “samples” for uh, “your”analysis.
- There’s a tragedy, like a murdered child. See the grieving parents, with tears streaming down their faces? Get a close-up – – look at all that misery. Closer! Now stay on that shot, you ghoulish, blood-sucking bastards.
- December 12, 2000 – – the Apocalypse. The U.S. Supreme Court orders a halt to the recount in Florida, in complete contravention of the Tenth Amendment, and proclaims George W. Bush to be President. The media just goes along with it. Oh, I guess that’s how it is, then. No questions, no comments, or very few.
- For decades, the networks had exit polls on election day, and they were always accurate to a fraction of a percent. Then in the 1990s, they began to diverge with election results. It was called “red shift”, a shift to the Republicans from what the exit polls said. It was about that time that electronic voting came into wide use, and gee, these companies were all owned by conservatives, they were easily hackable, and the software was proprietary, so election officials couldn’t look into “irregularities”. We had privatized the vote. What did the networks do? Did they investigate? No, they stopped exit polls; they were no longer an accurate predictor.
- Fox News – – This is not a news organization at all, but the official propaganda arm of the Right. Fox has about as much to do with news as table tennis does to tennis.
- Late fall, 2002 – – The Bush administration was ramping up to invade Iraq, and there were hundreds of thousands in the streets protesting, here and around the world. Next to nothing on cable news.
- As the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan dragged on, there were numerous military analysts pontificating on strategies. They were all retired officers, and they were all at that time lobbyists for the defense industry, yet no one ever asked them who they represented.
- CNN – – Rather than reporting news the public needs to know, they have a new segment called “You Pick the News”, where they give three choices, and let the viewers decide which they want to see. One of the choices is usually about something we should be told about, and one is always some goddamned dog on a skateboard. Guess which wins. Shameful and disgusting behavior.
- Monthly job reports – – Each month the Dept. of Labor releases job numbers, the amount of new jobs, and the news shows report them. The problem is that we need to create about 140,000 jobs each month just to keep pace with the population growth, new people entering the job market. So when we’re told that, say, 90,000 new jobs were created that month, is that NET new jobs, or TOTAL new jobs? We’re rarely told, and that’s just inexcusable laziness.
- Social Security – – Many in the media buy into the lie that Social Security is in financial trouble, and various solutions are discussed, EXCEPT raising the cap! Any income above $106,800 doesn’t have Social Security deductions; that’s the cap. No one ever even brings that up. If you removed the cap, Social Security would be solvent forever.
- One of the Right’s sound-bites these days is how the bottom 47% of workers pays no federal income taxes at all. Yet NONE of these so-called news people ever mentions the outrage that 47% of workers earn so little they don’t even have to pay income taxes. Even THAT isn’t wholly true; those workers pay taxes in the form of deductions, which they get back when they file. Until then, though, that money is taken out of their pay.
- The Palestine situation – – Most of the Palestinians have been living in virtual concentration camp conditions for sixty years. It’s apartheid every bit as much as South Africa once was, but this is never brought out, because the Pro-Israeli lobby is by far the most powerful in Washington. You’ll never see the Palestinian side of the debate, not on the news, not by any politician. It would be political suicide.
- Portland, OR, Oct. 26 = Just before 500 riot police swept into the Occupy Oakland camp, ABC & CBS shut off their cameras, and their news helicopters left the area, later citing they were low on fuel.
- There has been network coverage on the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, but not a single word about the numerous protests at the White House. There were two weeks of protests in late August – early September, then on Sunday Nov. 6th, 12,000 protesters linked arms and completely surrounded the White House grounds; there were 1253 arrests. Nothing on network news. But then just look at their numerous ads by Exxon-Mobil, Chevron, America’s Natural Gas, and Conoco-Phillips. I guess we shouldn’t be surprised.
I could go on for weeks, but you get the idea. Of course, if there’s a sensational trial, or better yet, a lurid sex scandal, you media whores are all over it like maggots on a dead horse. Yes, there are some excellent people in network news and journalism – – ABC’s Christiane Amanpour, CNN’s Candy Crowley, MSNBC’s Martin Bashir, Lawrence O’Donnell, and Rachel Maddow. These are the exceptions, not the rule. The television media are owned, sponsored, and operated by the Corporate State, and are therefore no longer relevant as news sources. The mainstream media now are Twitter, You-Tube, and Facebook, and their journalists are ordinary people with camera-phones. We thank them for picking up the ball and running with it.