I’ve had it with the news. According to various formerly respectable magazines and newspapers, the sky is falling. Perhaps it is. As the shadow of Rupert Murdoch hovers over national publications, editors decide that sensationalism trumps balanced, well researched stories. Reporters no longer seem to trust readers to have an attention span longer than a flea’s, which is why they rely on sound bites to attract public attention. There is not much room for logic in most sound bites. For example, Newsweek says that Benyamin Netanyahu spat on Joe Biden’s face, b. Great attention grabber, but did it really happen? Read the story and you will see that it is all stuff and nonsense meant to demonize the Israeli government. But, someone at Newsweek believes that pandering to anti-Zionists boost sales and sales are everything.
The Washington Post continues to give the impression that the media construct from Alaska is relevant to American politics when she is, at best, a carnival barker who owes her status to irresponsible journalism. True, she appeals to bigots, xenophobes, religious extremists and those disinclined to think hard. Does that make her front page material? I don’t think so. What The Post seems to ignore is that when the state of the union collided brutally with many Americans’ sense of entitlement. The USA was the unchallenged leader of the First World for so long, many feel angry and disoriented at the change for the worse. Rather than adapt, as Americans have done so well in the past, they seek a catalyst for the anger and their fear. That is so much easier than an attitude adjustment. The media construct from Alaska thrives on hatred and fear. None of this points at great intelligence or rock firm mental health.
Politicians such as Eric Cantor shake a collectively mendacious finger at Democrats who asked that Republican politicians issue a joint statement condemning inflammatory behavior. In a classic example of blaming the victim, they accuse Democrats who received death threats for supporting health care reform of being the ones who fan the flames. When the media construct from Alaska incites Tea Partiers with divisive rhetoric, Cantor and company say nothing.
Dissent us a big no-no in the GOP these days. Canadian Professional Conservative David Frum disssents-hey, it’s a lucrative gig. He’s getting more attention than when he toed the old discredited old line–and he gets fired. In comic opera mode his fellow Republicans howl that he is a traitor to the cause.
Lost in all this is damage done to the body politic. Members of the newly monolithic do not seem to understand that even if they should win future elections, they country they so badly want to govern will be, thanks to their short sightedness, the Disunited States of America. Who profits from this?
News from global village is not good. Harpers Magazine claims that the CIA failed to do its job in Malaysia, which is said to harbor the new wave of Jihaddists hell bent on the destruction of western civilisation. Maybe Harpers is right. maybe Al-Qaida is licking its whiskery chops as we speak. That would be premature. While the media might never its regard for truth, but Americans might recall that they once thrived in adversity. Whatever tabloid inspired journalism predicts, it is too early to run for the bunker.