Archives for posts with tag: Media

In Russia, where the State controls the media and the Oligarchy loves the President, Vladimir Putin is hugely popular with the masses. In spite of starting new wars, wrecking the economy, destroying jobs and empoverishing millions. Because the media is controlled by his allies.

In America, where the Oligarchy controls the media and hates the President, Barack Obama is hugely unpopular with the masses. In spite of ending two wars, saving the economy, creating jobs and lifting millions out of poverty. Because the media is controlled by his enemies.

See a pattern? Yeah, me too.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

Your humble correspondent and his amazingly tolerant spouse spent last weekend with family, preparing for all manner of family-altering events. In the course of that, we were exposed to Cable “News” of various flavors (we don’t typically watch that kind of crap at chez Blunt and Cranky) on family members’ TeeVees, as they keep those channels on during waking hours. This was a depressingly revelatory experience, and it explained a lot about how America has would up so close to becoming a Dystopia on the order of Brave New World, 1984, or one of such.

What this writer saw was a load of propaganda, innuendo, speculation, dissimulation, distraction, obfuscation, panic-mongering, manipulation, and outright lies: call it 90+% of the programming. Any actual news appeared at random and infrequently. This, whether one was subjected to Fox, CNN, or MSNBC. The vast majority of airtime was swallowed up by “panel discussions”, “analysis”, and members of the the Punditocracy doing their Pundit thing.

So this morning, listening to the Beeb on the car radio, all one heard was the Brit Flavor of the same programming. Perhaps a bit more news there, but not by a lot. And it brought home the pervasiveness of the phenomenon: we are getting the same sort of near-as-no-matter brainwashing as described by Huxley or Orwell. Big Brother may not be watching us 24/7/365 yet, but He is most certainly doing His very best to control our thinking. And having great success at it, too.

Ebola? Be afraid, shun the infected!
A mass shooting? Be afraid, buy more guns and hide!
Terrorists? Be afraid, elect authoritarians!
People of Color in our country? Be afraid, vote to take away their rights!

On and on, on nearly every topic (except the occasional cat video), fear was the product being sold. And a neo-Fascist, authoritarian approach was the lone solution being presented as the “only way” to be “safe”.

America has gone down this road before: the “Redskins”, the “Yellow Peril”, and the “Red Scare” are just a few examples of how the powers that be use the media to manipulate us, mislead us, and bit by bit, enslave us. By pitting us against the “Other” du jour, we are led down a twisted road to a Dystopian nation, in which we will all be at risk of being “Othered” if we don’t stay in line.

One bright spot: our President doesn’t watch cable news: http://www.mediabistro.com/tvnewser/jay-carney-president-obama-is-various-reader-of-print-does-not-watch-cable-news_b243577 One very dark spot: this is presented as a very unusual and possibly negative thing. By, of course, cable news:

STELTER: Is it true the president doesn’t watch any cable news?

CARNEY: It is true, which doesn’t mean that he doesn’t get news, in a real time basis. He does. He’s a voracious consumer of the printed word, even the electronic printed word, and but he doesn’t — he doesn’t watch cable news. I have spent, you know, countless hours with him on Air Force One, especially, in the conference room where we always had the TV on, and it was never in any of the trips I ever took with him, tuned in to cable news.

So hey, cool, the Prexy isn’t getting the full brainwash treatment. Yay. He’s not peddling as much fear and loathing as most DC Politicos. But of course, most people don’t like him much, so who cares what he has to say?

I know most people don’t like Obama; after all, I heard it on CNN this weekend…

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

Yes, that “weak”, “indecisive”, “mom-jeans-wearing” President of ours just ordered a military strike against Middle-Eastern terrorists.  They kicked some Libyan Rebel butt. And the news media kinda sort reported on it. Here is the story: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/18/world/middleeast/libya-oil-tanker.html?_r=0

You’ll notice this went down a week or so ago, when the airwaves were filled with Foxish, Rushish, Rightish bashing-on-the-wimpy-black-Prexy noise; small wonder that this story got minimal coverage. But contrary to the prevailing “wisdom”, our Prexy saw a threat to Libya’s democratically-elected government and ordered a military strike to save said government. Oh, and that is the same Libyan government that “Republicans” accuse Obama of being such a little nancy-boy about (hint: “Benghazi”).

So why didn’t you hear about this? A simple reason: the “news” media is largely controlled by people who hates them some Obama: http://www.businessinsider.com/these-6-corporations-control-90-of-the-media-in-america-2012-6  So, if you heard about this at all, it was a few plaudits to to the SEALS who carried out the attack. In fact, they deserved a lot more and better coverage, as did the rest of the command and control apparatus. And yes, that includes the President, no matter what that great military expert Sarah Palin may have to say about it.

As noted before on this blog, the infotainment machine wouldn’t know real news if it bit them on the ass: http://wp.me/p2jksg-2kb  And this is but another example of that phenomenon. If you’re relying on less than, say, ten or more news sources, you are getting the Mushroom Treatment.

This writer mistrusts the corporate media, so he listens to it, and then checks a load of other sources, including foreign media outlets, and even some of the fringe whacko sites here in the USA. Nothing goes onto this blog without being subjected to the crankiest of analyses: it’s a pity that, say, Fox “News” can’t take the time to do the same.

So, please, Gentle Reader, take a few minutes and stroll around the InterTubes, to see what is going on. That is to say, what ELSE is going on that the bean-counters and Raging Righties in their Tightie Whities don’t want you to know. Today’s example: despite the lies that are being spewed, President Obama is capable of ordering swift, decisive military action (like he also did when he caught Bin Laden).

Good one, Mr. President. Way to give the terrorist scumbuckets one in the eye. Even if (or especially if) hardly anyone gives you credit for it.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

Yesterday, we talked about how liberal demonstrations are ignored by the media, even if tens of thousands are present and protesting. Here is a picture of one small part of that crowd, which was NOT covered on major US “news” outlets:

20140211-105530.jpg

Now we bring you a few photos of Right-Wingnut “events” that WERE covered by that same media. See if you can spot the difference:

20140211-105751.jpg

20140211-110421.jpg

20140211-110657.jpg

20140211-110818.jpg

Yep, if you are a Teabagger, Birtherbot, Right Wingnut or a “Republican” of any sort, then the media will show up and cover your “rally”, never mind how small or ridiculous it is. But if you are anybody else, sorry, but Bubba’s having gotten a blowjob back in the 90’s or a “celebrity” sighting is far more newsworthy than you are.

Since the right-wingnuts and Teapubs own the media, this may not be surprising. But it remains infuriating.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

20140210-112846.jpg That is a picture of around one hundred-thousand people marching through Raleigh this past Saturday, protesting a whole raft of screw-everybody-but-rich-white-male-Repub laws that are being foisted upon the populace by North Carolina’s 100% Teapublican government. And here is a link to more such pictures. Oh, and here is another link to a local report.

And did you hear about this on the national “news” programs, Gentle Reader? No, you did not. You heard about the Olympics, various celebrity peccadillos, a politician’s 1990’s sex life, and lots of finger-pointing tripe from Congress.

It is apparently too much to expect our Infotainment industry to cover a huge grass-roots march by ordinary people, asking for ordinary things, in an ordinary way. You see, the “news” media is no longer about news, and hasn’t been since the 1970’s. The Reaganistas deregulated the media , making truth play second fiddle to profits. Second fiddle, Hell, they made truth a friggin’ understudy. Ratings and ad revenue determine what gets played on TeeVee “news” programs these days.

The only way for a citizen’s protest to get shown on national media would be to add a professional celebrity: have a Kardashian get a divorce during the march, or perhaps have Miley Cyrus twerking on a wrecking ball at the head of the march. Something shallow and meaningless to attract the “journalists”, and once they have taken the bait, the marchers force them to listen to, and then report on, something substantial, something that people actually need to know.

Because as of now, the lives and concerns of ordinary Americans are guaranteed not to be broadcast on the “news”.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

One more time, everybody, all together: “Bull-F***ING-S***”. Phil Robertson is not a victim: he is a multimillionaire with an enormous estate, an entrepreneur and tireless self-promoter who has worked hard to earn his considerable riches. He is a shrewd manipulator of people and this writer would not be at all surprised if this recent blowup turned out to be a huge, carefully scripted publicity stunt. You know, like the whole Duck Dynasty media behemoth.

The beards, the redneck schtick? All scripted and perfectly crafted to sell in the current market. This family made millions of dollars before the TV show, and looked like the friggin’ Romneys:

20131220-083824.jpg
Yep, yuppies. That was the Robertson clan when they WEREN’T acting. But they are acting now.

And actors play parts. Salesmen sell products. That means, Gentle Reader, that you can’t take anything Phil says at face value. He is ACTING. And he is SELLING. So maybe he meant all that revolting s*** he spewed, maybe not, but there is a strong likelihood that it was all done on purpose, to create a buzz and increase ratings.

No way is Phil Robertson a victim. He is shrewd, wealthy and powerful, and is set for life. You want to talk victims? How about the veterans who are getting their pensions and bennies cut, or the kids that lost their food stamps and are now even hungrier?

Those are REAL victims. Phil is not one of them.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

On Edit: Thanks to a friend who found this article from earlier this year, in which Phil announced his likely departure from the show: http://m.usmagazine.com/entertainment/news/duck-dynastys-phil-robertson-i-wont-do-the-show-much-longer-2013267

Makes it seem even more likely that this is all just a publicity stunt. B&C

Another day, another lying, anti-ObamaCare hit piece. This one on NPR, “showing” how it would hurt Dems in the next election. Lots of readers would be surprised to hear that NPR is participating in the anti-ACA witch-hunts that litter the mediascape like so many bloated buzzards, because NPR is supposedly a “liberal” outlet. But that is no longer the case, and hasn’t been for quite some time.

The truth is, 95% of the American “news” media is neither liberal nor conservative: they are driven by revenue, not ideology. NBC and Fox, for example, get paid by their advertisers and owners to put out stories that make more people watch their networks, because that makes more money for them. NPR does the same thing, except they call their paymasters “underwriters”. Same thing, different labels.

Back in the day (the 60’s and the 70’s), we used to say, “remember who the real enemy is”: it wasn’t the soldiers or the National Guard, it was the politicians and Military-Industrial Complex that gave the orders. Orders meant to increase the wealth and power of a very few, at the expense of the rest of us. So it was then, so it has always been, and so it is now. The real enemy is the class of powerful, wealthy, power-hungry motherf***ers who manipulate our politicians and media outlets in order to manipulate us.

“Remember who the real enemy is”. It is a truth that bears repeating. And this writer was pleased to hear it in the Dystopian allegory du jour (“The Hunger Games”), because a helluva lot of people need reminding. Generations of humans have been herded like cattle, and used in much the same way. We are NOT cattle, however; and we needn’t and shouldn’t compliantly chew our cud, being used up and milked of all our resources while we live, and eventually getting it where the livestock gets it.

Whenever you hear the “news” media harping on a single theme in near-unison, you can bet someone is paying for that chorus to sing those notes and recite those lyrics. Maybe the lyrics are lies, maybe they are selected bits of truth, but they are all chosen to deliver the message of our enemy. And that enemy has no single skin color, political affiliation, location, sexual orientation or gender: it is defined only by its ruthless rapacity and relentless creativity in fooling the foolish, gulling the gullible, and screwing the screwable.

And the Media take their silver and play their scripted part, making them (if not the enemy themselves), at least the willing accomplices of that enemy.

Tomorrow: trickle-down economics, and how successful it has been in robbing and dividing us.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

Congress hasn’t accomplished f***-all since 2010. They tried and tried to destroy s*** instead of doing their jobs. And now, these useless moochers, these parasites, these pimples on the arse of our nation; these “representatives” are criticizing the ACA for only partly working. The chutzpah is truly breathtaking.

It’s like having Ron White tell you to lay off the Scotch.
It’s like having David Vitter call you a pervert.
It’s like having the Westboro Baptist Church call you a hater.
It’s like having Anthony Weiner call you a slut.

What’s worse, the “news” media are acting like this is acceptable and sensible. They are acting as though a load of do-nothing layabouts have the right to criticize someone else who is actually doing something, for not doing it perfectly.

This writer will pay attention to Repub criticism of the ACA as soon as said Repubs get off their obese behinds and earn their huge paychecks and bennies. And not one moment before.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

Remember the 90’s? That was when a Dem got elected President, and the Repubs spent years manufacturing “scandals” so as to stop him from getting his agenda accomplished. Bulls*** allegation after bulls*** allegation, and finally one stuck to the wall: a stain on a gullible young lady’s dress, put there by our horndog Prexy Bubba. Finally, after years of effort, the “Republicans” had a scandal with which to distract the public and derail the administration’s efforts and policies. Oh, and to use to take the White House in 2000. Dirty politics, but effective. Even today, “Lewinsky” is a punch line.

Now we have another Democrat at 1600, and the Repubs have been working from the same playbook for his entire term. BS “scandal” after BS “scandal” has been thrown at Obama, and none has stuck. Not until Ron Paul supporter Edward Snowden decided to derail the administration. And he (or whoever he really works for) has upped the game considerably. Not just a stain or an “is” leaked at random moments: no, these releases of national security information are being timed to lead the media and the more gullible members of the public around by the nose:
* The initial “revelation” happened just after another attempted scandal was fizzling out,
* The “revelation” about spying on China came out right before Obama met with China’s leader,
*The “revelation” about spying on Russia came out right before Obama met with Russia’s leader, and then
*Right on cue, the son of the man Snowden supported in 2012 denounced Obama over the NSA “scandal”.

A well-coordinated and effective but of dirty politics, you’ll agree. And it will continue, because it seems to be working. Note that this writer is neither excusing Clinton’s pre-adolescent behavior with Ms. Lewinsky, nor is he standing up for the appalling breaches of privacy that the Bushies and their Patriot Act handed down to the present regime.

But, Gentle Reader, he IS saying that the “revelations” and “scandals” are part of a pattern of behavior that we have seen from the “Republican” party for many years now. Far too many of We The People are forgetting this, and allowing ourselves to be jerked around on the strings of various puppeteers, who are not doing this for the good of the country: no, they are doing this to stop Obama from getting anything done, so the Elephants can kick the Donkeys out of power once again. And it’s working, because far too many of us aren’t paying attention.

And if this disgraceful campaign of character assassination succeeds, you’ll have this latter-day Lewinsky to thank (or blame). Yes, the new and improved edition of a young naïf who hit their knees in order to “service” someone in a position of power. A punchline-in-waiting is he, aided and abetted by our national failure to pay attention when we are being manipulated.

The only question left is what sort of “stain” will be left on Mr. Snowden, and whether he can ever wash it away.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

Just one example of many: Sean Hannity during the Bush administration excoriating the Dems for opposing the creation of an Orwellian surveillance state, and the same boyo during the Obama administration excoriating the Dems for creating the aforementioned surveillance state. A nice little video of this flat-headed flannelmouth ranting on both sides of the issue. And did you see ABC or CBS “news” calling him out for his Janus impression? Neither did anyone else, because they never did.

In addition to out-and-out partisan hacks like Hannity, we have the merely lazy hacks who do nothing but pass along the lies of our “representatives”. No fact-checking, nonono, none of that old0fashioned stuff.

This is the only article your humble correspondent could locate that actually dared to ask questions( like, say, “why do Teapublicans oppose criminal background checks for gun buyers as ‘intrusive’ but support the Patriot Act and other domestic surveillance initiatives?”) and didn’t simply repeat the B.S. that got handed down by the two-faced crooks and liars in DC. An excerpt;

“This bill is a clear overreach that will predominantly punish and harass our neighbors, friends, and family,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who voted against proceeding to debate the issue of gun control.

But on Tuesday, the Kentucky Republican defended the controversial NSA surveillance programs that sweep up data on phone calls and Internet activities, essentially making the case that the efforts are justified and legal.

Seen that on Fox, CNN, or another such “news” outlet? Yeah, we haven’t either. Such is life in the infotainment age. And let’s not forget the hysterical, hype-ridden “coverage” at the outset of this “scandal” that was ever-so-quietly “corrected” as the days went on. It’s getting to the point where we can trust our “news” media even less than we do Congress.

And if you’re less trustworthy than those partisan motherf***ers, you can’t be trusted at all.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky