Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

General discussions of interest to readers and fans of Harlan Ellison.

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FrankChurch
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby FrankChurch » Thu Mar 29, 2012 3:39 pm

Had to do another screen, because it was jumping around. grr

Another great website that looks at our idiotic media:

http://www.accuracy.org/

According to the Conkrite Center 67 percent of Americans don't trust the media. Why would the general public believe that if the media are so truthful?

Sure, some media mentions Cointelpro, like RT:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Ds7NDC2 ... re=related

The New York Times reported on Paperclip--in 2010! Better late than never. Then they allow the CIA to give a rebuttal. How lovely.

Sure, you see media reports on these, but not as a staple, like when they talk about Watergate or even White Water. Ask any American on the street what cointelpro is and they will give you a strange look.

Watergate was a pretty minor thing, where half of the power structure was threatened. Power has the ability to defend itself. The bombing of Cambodia, not so minor. Compare the reporting of each. In a real democracy cambodia would be much higher than some stooges robbing an office at a hotel. When we supporting Suharto in his massacres in East Timor the press looked the other way, until Bill Clinton called off the terrorism in 1999. Compare the reporting of Timor to the reports about how evil Pol Pot was.

When was the last time you saw a report sympathetic to Hugo Chavez? They exist, but are mostly excluded.

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FrankChurch
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby FrankChurch » Thu Mar 29, 2012 3:54 pm

Normon Solomon on Glenn Beck! Classic:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MrTQSuS-2Aw

To make you think I am only mentioning corporate media, even a FAIR study of Washington Journal, C-Span's major issues show had the same results: right wing, white males. Sure, C-Span has lefties on Book Tv, but that doesn't get the big audience WJ does. Odd.

NPR, PBS, same thing, and those are considered public media.

Right wing think tanks are used for sources more than others. Left wing think tanks are rarely used.

When Donahue was on MSNBC they had a rule: for every liberal guest you had to have on two conservatives. For Michael Moore you had to have 3 conservatives--I am not kidding.

CNN was asked by Janeane Garafolo, if they could have on Greg Palast or Howard Zinn. CNN producers told her they were "too controversial." But they would interview Charles Manson.

Look at the debate about the deficit. How many in the media say the deficit doesn't matter? Very few. Even though the public think jobs are more important than the deficit.

Why does Thomas Friedman and Fareed Zakaria get on tv but not Tariq Ali?

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Ezra Lb.
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby Ezra Lb. » Thu Mar 29, 2012 7:38 pm

Why does Thomas Friedman and Fareed Zakaria get on tv but not Tariq Ali?

Because he's an atheist? :wink:
“We must not always talk in the marketplace,” Hester Prynne said, “of what happens to us in the forest.”
-Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter

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Lori Koonce
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby Lori Koonce » Thu Mar 29, 2012 8:44 pm

Frank

Has it ever occurred to you that perhaps those 67% you mentioned believe as I do, and that you cannot trust just one source of news.

I mean I listen to NPR, BBC, CBC, and the world wide German radio station, and even the Al-Jezera English. I don't EVER believe something without at least two if not three sources have reported the same thing. I'm sure I'm not the only one who dose the same thing.

While it's good to be skeptical, to do so to the point of paranoia is a bit mentally unstable to say the least.

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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby Anthony Ravenscroft » Thu Mar 29, 2012 10:24 pm

There's plenty of sources about Smedley Butler, including from the guy himself:
http://www.amazon.com/War-Racket-Antiwar-Americas-Decorated/dp/0922915865
http://www.amazon.com/General-Smedley-Darlington-Butler-Leatherneck/dp/0275941418
http://www.amazon.com/Maverick-Marine-Contradictions-American-Military/dp/0813109574

As well:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Business_Plot

In a sane (or at least Heinleinian) world, shouldn't the plotter have been lined up on Wall Street & summarily shot? (Just askin'. At least the Bush family would've been modified.)

Speaking of "conspiracy theorists," here's a few goofy-but-real plots:
http://www.cracked.com/article_15974_7-insane-conspiracies-that-actually-happened.html

Basically, people don't give a shit until something bites 'em on the ass, by which time it's either too late to do much of anything, or Justin Bieber has started rehearsing for his new tour, or Apple pre-announces some new cash-sucking gewgaw, or it's "just soooo last-week."

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FrankChurch
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby FrankChurch » Fri Mar 30, 2012 12:53 pm

We should thank the popular culture, which brings out a lot of ideas you would not see in the elite media, like Gangs of New York, which talked about the draft riots.

Things you will rarely see in the media: the terms 'imperial', 'imperialism', 'empire'. 'War criminal' when dealing with American officials. 'Stolen election' being fairly reported. Anything baring close to neutral on Israel--Goldstone Report being fairly reported. Anti-war people seen as heros. Obviously, left wing views on media--they tend to report right wing meme about 'liberal media bias.' Drug war called racist. Prison industry seen as racist. Truth about government intervention in economy.

So many more.

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FrankChurch
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby FrankChurch » Fri Mar 30, 2012 1:41 pm

This made me giggle. Chomsky ripping apart french intellectuals:

http://www.zcommunications.org/french-i ... am-chomsky

He makes a great point--intellectuals, to be seen, have to come up with wild ideas so they can get their names in the papers. Probably why Hitchens went pro-war, because most intellectuals are seen as anti-imperialist.

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FrankChurch
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby FrankChurch » Fri Mar 30, 2012 2:54 pm

Kudos to George Galloway for winning MP in a stunning win in Bradford. What's stunning is he won against a labor seat, someone who is on the other side of an unpopular conservative PM. This could signal that the actual left will start winning big in england and elsewhere.

The disgusting BBC is being real fair to Galloway here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okKxC4ZNIqw

It was funny to see an arab with a scottish accent.

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Ezra Lb.
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby Ezra Lb. » Fri Mar 30, 2012 4:35 pm

Probably why Hitchens went pro-war...

Probably? You mean with all the articles he wrote about it and the talks he gave about it you still don't know why he supported the invasion of Iraq? If you don't know what somebody's position is, how can you oppose it?

What you do is simply parrot your points from the same two or three sources you use for everything. You don't believe anything anybody else says but you never question for a second anything they say. You're a hopeless reactionary pretending to be a "radical".

The "left" is just as mindless and robotic as the "right". "Truth" (a word that should always be in quotes) lies in, shall we say, another direction.
“We must not always talk in the marketplace,” Hester Prynne said, “of what happens to us in the forest.”
-Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter

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FrankChurch
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby FrankChurch » Sat Mar 31, 2012 12:04 pm

He wrote and supported it to get more elite street cred, which is what happened, knowing full well that the other side would be muzzled, which they were. Real courage there.

-------

Ezra, you did prove my point earlier that you are not within the enlightenment tradition, where us lefties get our marching orders.

My sources are endless.

Mark Tiedemann
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby Mark Tiedemann » Sat Mar 31, 2012 12:14 pm

FrankChurch wrote:He wrote and supported it to get more elite street cred, which is what happened, knowing full well that the other side would be muzzled, which they were. Real courage there.


It couldn't possibly be that he simply thought Saddam Hussein so despicable that removing him would be a net good in the world, could it? No, that couldn't possibly be it.

As eloquently and descriptively as he had written about Hussein, even before Gulf War 1, to cast him into the ranks of the "merely avaricious" is shallow at best. There is, I think, a legitimate basis for disagreement in the two positions---believing that force should be used to mitigate evil in the world and believing there is never a justifiable reason to use it. Neither requires that either side be morally suspect.

Hitchens considered Hussein worse than Hitler and from descriptions of his regime I can see where he would draw that conclusion.

You know, I enjoy fencing with you most of the time, Frank, but you have a couple of trademarks that are tiresome. You use "elite" like a gun, pulling it out to castigate people for holding opinions with which you do not agree. You also, I think, misuse it as a result. Here's a thought---once in a while, mainstream media is correct and is actually on the right side of an issue. Maybe not often, but often enough that continually associating people who agree with them as somehow intellectually compromised suggests reflexive thinking at best.

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FrankChurch
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby FrankChurch » Sat Mar 31, 2012 2:29 pm

Why then didn't Hitchens insist that far left critics of the war had to be on television if they invited him? Slate, the Atlantic, Newsweek, they all gave him writing gigs after the conversion. I know, this is all mysterious.

Our side agreed that Hussein was despicable, but it is more despicable to bomb a country, breach international law and kill about a million civilians, whose humanity Hitchens had little care for. It certainly made a bad case for atheism, since they do not have to see their fellow human being as their neighbor.

Equally despicable was Hitchens saying that principled anti-war critics like Harold Pinter and Chomsky were part of the "Bin-Laden left."

There's this odd statement of his:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JK_1qQOWNo0

We didn't care about Iraq? We mourn the dead soldiers and equally murdered civilians, he didn't. He also doesn't mention the sanctions were genocidal and kept him in power. When we fully supported him in the eighties into 1990 our side wanted that stopped. We cared, the same people he went under the tent with did not.

---------------

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FrankChurch
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby FrankChurch » Sat Mar 31, 2012 2:35 pm

I never said the media is always bad, I said it is mostly bad. It has gotten better, largely because the culture has gotten more humane. Thank the activism of the 60s, now rekindled with our occupier friends.

I noticed nobody said, "Frank, I was shocked that the Sunday shows only have on right wingers, that's outragious!"

Thankfully the whole Obamacare flap has given traction again to mild peeps about single payer, a concept so radical only conservatives in most of europe support it, while our liberals think Obamacare is just peachy.

------

I am not an idealogue. Facts bring out the inner radical. Facts lead me to my conclusions. Facts are the pooch that lick my hands. They bring me my paper, make my bed.

By the way, UP with Chris Hayes and Melissa Harris Perry were both awesome today. Rare to see good tv.

Mark Tiedemann
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby Mark Tiedemann » Sat Mar 31, 2012 3:22 pm

As a question for general debate, Frank. You claim the sanctions were "genocidal" (another word that gets overused to the point of virtual worthlessness---there are genuine genocides, but the size of the victim pool is not the determining factor---and no that is not to suggest I overlook large decimations of civilian populations or condone them). Fair enough. Then what should we do when faced with someone like Hussein? Or Assad? Or...take your pick. What should we do? Go in and extract the asshole? Okay, and then what? Next asshole in line takes his place, it's a crapshoot if he turns out better or worse. Hell, we can't even be sure of continued "friendship" when replacing one with another.

Besides, until recently, the United States did not make a policy of targeting individuals (never mind the reality here, we're talking policy that everyone can get behind).

Then, what? Invasion? Topple the regime and then oversee the empowerment of a new government? Well, we can see how well that works.

Leaving sanctions. Because just ceasing to do business does not in itself do much to oust an asshole, you have to get everyone to stop doing business with him, which is...sanctions.

Now, I personally don't like sanctions because, in my opinion, they hurt all the wrong people. They are basically attempts to turn a country into the kind of pressure-cooker that produces revolution. Revolution is a very dicey thing and usually just as many people get killed as in the average invasion. And I don't like the idea of punishing the people who are already victims of an asshole, because we all know the asshole is going to be the last one to feel the pinch.

But I would like to know---what is the preferred method here?

Complete hands off? I suppose that's an option, but then there will be backdoor deals, and in any case the asshole is still doing terrible things to his own people and probably his neighbors. We are left with as much moral ambiguity as with any other response, so I would like to know---what is the preferred method in dealing with a Hussein?

I will stipulate that the efficacy of any response is conditional upon the competence of our own asshole-in-chief. The worst aspects of the mess in Iraq, in my opinion, were a direct result of gross mismanagement in the aftermath of the invasion because we had an idiot in the White House being puppet-managed by a venal shit-heel. My personal opinion.

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FrankChurch
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Re: Frank Church's news corner, the sequel.

Postby FrankChurch » Sat Mar 31, 2012 3:37 pm

I kept this in my quiver, because I knew Ezra would go all Vietnam on me. Here's Noam Chomsky and Chris Hitchens, TOGETHER, on NPR in the 90s. Notice that Hitchens agrees with Chomsky almost 100 percent during the whole discussion about the media, using evidence that I brought up earlier. Especially listen to the second half, where Hitchens agrees with Chomsky on things he later used against Chomsky to say he was pro-Al Qaida. The irony of this total change of charactor is stunning:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ysQPtAOJjY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2x5PTSS ... ure=relmfu

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wF_Pyav_ ... ure=relmfu

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KcXsync4 ... ure=relmfu

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TCoQv-qu ... ure=relmfu

Part four, where Hitchens mentions the sanctions.

Notice also how shocked the callers are that Chomsky and Hitchens are allowed on radio. We all know Hitchens had command over the media after his conversion. I know, it's all so ironic.


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