Archive for msm

It’s Easy to Understand.

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 18, 2011 by rottenart

Hell, even Calvin gets it.

The Occupy movement has been tough to pin down for a corporate media drunk on its own self-worth and slowly going the way of the dinosaur. They treat it as if it’s rowdy kids climbing the counter and pulling down cookies as opposed to a true populist uprising. That is, when they don’t scoff outright.

On the bright side, opinion seems to be shifting. Here’s Melissa Francis explaining to Joe Scarborough what he clearly doesn’t take seriously. That’s great, and I applaud Francis and any other outlet willing to actually talk about OWS and why they’re so mad. The big focus so far has been on why they don’t have any demands in sound-bite form. I don’t seem to remember the Tea Party discussing the finer details of “Take My Country Back” but I digress.

The point is that even as the media is shaking off the dust, the powers that be are not sleeping at all. In fact, they seem to be scared shitless of the power that the masses hold. That means that what we’re doing is working.

Keep pushing. Keep standing your ground. History is on our side.

 

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This Needs More Coverage

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 16, 2011 by rottenart

I haven’t highlighted it here, but I’ve been following the disturbing story of Shawna Forde, rogue Minutemen activist and now convicted murderer. C&L has done a terrific job covering the story and calling on the MSM to give it some airtime. That it hasn’t is a complete mystery; it has all the components that usually make for wall to wall coverage.

If you don’t know the whole sad saga, do yourself a favor and read up on it. It will give you little insight into the minds of the lunatic fringe who want to demonize, harass and ultimately do harm to Hispanics living in America. And it will probably break your heart.

Raul Junior and Bresinia Flores are still dead but hopefully Forde’s conviction can alleviate some of the pain and shine a  light on the Right-Wing nativist and extremist groups that still exist in this country.

 

Funny, Fox Didn’t Mention This Rally

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 3, 2010 by rottenart

If I told you a rally was held on the national mall this weekend, made up of progressives, liberals and Democrats, and it eclipsed Glenn Beck’s Million Moron March in attendance numbers, would you believe me? I know, I know, none of the mainstream news channels bothered to report on it. There were no megalomaniac cable hosts or certifiably insane former politicians trying to co-opt Rev. King’s message of equality. Also, people who weren’t white showed up! All this makes for a sound byte that is BOOOOORRRRIIIINNG!!!! So, best just to ignore it and pretend it didn’t even happen. Hey, it worked for the anti-war march that featured millions of people prior to the Iraq invasion. Did you know that happened? Maybe you read reports that said “tens of thousands”? Starting to get the picture?

The point is that progressives are not just up against an ignorant, archaic, intolerant conservative movement. Despite the fact that the shrill right-wing has been bank-rolled by extremely wealthy business interests (the Brothers Koch come to mind), their ideas sink them every time.  People simply don’t like the message from the right. And why should they? Tax cuts for millionaires and cuts in social services doesn’t exactly jibe with the populist rhetoric they spout day after day and certainly doesn’t cut it with the millions who aren’t filthy rich. No, in addition to a brain-dead right-wing, they also have to contend with a mainstream media that acts as if conservatism is a serious intellectual movement and progressives are all dirty hippies.

Unfortunately, all of the attention from the media will be on a decidedly less progressive rally, the Jon Stewart/Stephen Colbert extravaganza planned for Oct. 30th. It’s not that I don’t consider these two an island of sanity amongst a sea of ridiculousness, but I feel that they pull attention simply by virtue of being on a cable channel. In some ways, they are part of the problem. If their rating dropped, you can bet they wouldn’t be allowed to continue. It’s a vote of confidence in a left-leaning mindset that their ratings are not dropping, but they also admit to not being news. CNN, MSNBC, CBS, etc. do claim to be objective but are beholden to the same ratings as the clowns.

We are left to further information by other means. Things like blogs and online sources. Talking to our friends and co-workers. Grass-roots is just that. It’s difficult remaining politically active and lead a normal life. But you can take solace in the fact that your viewpoint is popular. The rally on the mall on Saturday is proof of that. The media and the moneyed interests don’t like it, but progressives have the advantage of being in line with the majority of Americans. All the favorable news coverage and screeching on cable can’t do a thing about it.

A Tale of Two Scandals

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 26, 2010 by rottenart

Ol’ Steve hits it out of the park again. Rep Charlie Rangel (D) NY is the target of an ethics probe that is likely justified and might end up with Rangel’s defeat. It has been a big topic with the media since it broke and, like Steve, I agree it’s nothing to scoff at.  On the other side of the aisle, however, Sen. John Ensign (R) NV is also embroiled in a scandal. In fact, he’s the target of an FBI investigation into his kickback-for-a-mistress shenanigans that have also pointed fingers at the idiot doctor from OK, Sen. Tom Coburn. Of course it is an election year, so the usual gang of prognosticators wonders very seriously about what Rangel’s problems might mean for the Dems in the Fall. I wonder why there’s no mention of the Republican scandal in the news and why it’s going to tarnish the party for the midterms?

Honestly, ethics are a problem and Charlie Rangel certainly could bring home the bacon. But a House ethics probe is not the same as a federal investigation. John Ensign is facing charges and the bobble heads tell us how awful it is for the Democrats. The IOKIYAR rule is in full effect. Another example of that “liberal bias” in the media again, I suppose. Of course, hypocrisy is too big a word for the Tea Bushies; they love him because he invites twisted freaks like Sharron Angle to the Senate to start measuring drapes and drawing up plans for massacring brown people.

Maybe Charlie Rangel needs to go; I’ll reserve judgment for the report from the ethics committee. But John Ensign definitely needs to go and probably should be indicted for his behavior. But that’s not going to happen as long as the corporate mouthpieces that we call cable news hosts don’t adequately inform us of what’s going on. As some crazy wacko once put it: The news is just another show.

One of the Parties Takes Financial Reform Seriously. Guess Which One?

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 16, 2010 by rottenart

Hopefully, this will be the first of many exercises in authority that the SEC has up its sleeve. The gridlock that keeps DC from doing anything meaningful about Wall Street’s excesses seems to be cracking just a little. Of course, I’m of the opinion that this should have been one of the first moves after Obama took office but cases like this take time to build. I also differ with the Teabaggers in that I think propping up our financial system was the right move, no matter how unpopular it might have been. All indications are that taxpayers are getting a pretty good return on investment though you likely won’t hear too much about it in the MSM. It’s also not surprising in the least to hear Frank Luntz’s advice taken to heart by the GOP, despite its disconnect from facts on the ground. Developments like this will hopefully lead to a confidence that the government can work for the people, at least when it’s run with competence. When every single GOP senator is opposed to reform legislation, I’m inclined to think it’s a good idea.

As we get nearer to the circus that is midterm elections, prognosticators are forecasting a Republican resurgence. Democrats are doing a good job tying the failures of Wall Street to Republican rule for the past decade and it’s heartening to see them grow a spine about calling the GOP out on their obstruction. The fact is, Obama stopped a recession from becoming a depression, is getting the taxpayers’ money back at a record pace, and is making steps to significantly reform the way the financial system operates. We all know that reality has very little to do with our national debate but the argument against Obama’s accomplishments on the economy are getting harder and harder to sustain. Even if the recovery takes a bit longer then we’d like, its progress in a year should be enough to blunt a full-fledged Republican assault in the Fall. I’ll give them credit for trying to confuse America with a windstorm of bullshit and mostly succeeding but I think the tipping point is not that far off. A house of lies necessarily crumbles of its own weight eventually and lying seems to be the only weapon in the right-wing’s arsenal.

Professional Porn Star Out, Amateur Porn Star Still In

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 15, 2010 by rottenart

What a shame. I was really looking forward to a debate between these two. Many of you likely didn’t take Stormy Daniels seriously, but I thought her press release announcing the end of her campaign shows her to be at least as thoughtful and intellectual as David Vitter. We need more dark horse candidates from non-traditional backgrounds (that’s all code for ‘porn stars’) running against Republicans, especially those who have had problems with keeping their Family Values credentials intact.

I wrote about this yesterday too, in the context of the ongoing fascination with Eric Massa. Outright hypocrisy from such traditional family stalwarts as Mark Sanford, John Ensign and David Vitter is just never going to be dealt with as harshly in the GOP caucus. For some reason, they seem to think that the public will give them a pass no matter what they do. Sadly, they appear to be completely correct thus far. Vitter’s number was found on a list from a notorious DC brothel, he confessed to the crime, it was disclosed that he actually like to dress up in diapers and be babied, and… he’s still a respected senator from Louisiana. Now, for $200, which respected New York governor was in almost the exact situation and found himself run out of town on a rail? If you answered Eliot Spitzer, the check is in the mail.

As I wrote, I don’t know what it would take to get the media to dig into these stories. With the public fawning over every single detail of the John & Kate gossip, why wouldn’t they go ga-ga for similarly juicy tidbits about David Vitter? I suppose we have come to expect this sort of behavior from politicians but that still doesn’t explain Vitter’s complete side-step of any consequences from his party. I guess this proves which camp walks the walk when it comes to tolerating indiscretions.

If the loss of Stormy Daniels has got you down, not to worry. We still have plenty of porn-politics to come, especially in NY. Kristin Davis, the madam who supplied Spitzer with women, is also running as a libertarian, with a platform of legalizing drugs and prostitution. It’s an interesting day in America when the porn stars sound more reasonable than the other candidates.

Massa Groped Some Dudes; John Ensign Is Under Federal Investigation

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 14, 2010 by rottenart

What in the world is congress doing still focused on this guy? I mean, he was busted, he resigned, now he’s back home with the television likely turned off. Why does anyone care how many more sexy-time grope sessions he had and where they took place? Steve Benen wrote about this yesterday and I completely agree. Americans have a penchant for the spectacular and by all accounts, Massa’s flameout was just that. I get why major news outlets are rushing all the salacious new details into print: people want the juicy gossip.

What is so silly is that John Ensign’s story has all the same intrigue plus a healthy spoonful of actually committing crimes. It’s bad enough that the calls for Ensign’s ouster have barely reached a whisper. Even worse is the fact that the press can’t figure out that the story is tailor-made for the tabloid mentality of most Americans. Adultery, hush money, kickbacks, bribes, an FBI investigation… It’s all there. The only explanation is that the MSM has a vested interest in flogging the Massa story while completely ignoring Ensign. I can’t believe it’s a simple case of creating a narrative or lazy journalism. I don’t have the time to dig into the story or the money trail because, well, I’m not a journalist, for one. Some other candidates for the job do come to mind, though.

I suppose it’s all part of a pattern: the GOP flagellates themselves over a Democratic indiscretion, the Democrats freak out and the perpetrator usually resigns, the GOP admits that they have all done the same things if not worse and the GOP keeps their jobs. I freely admit most folks don’t care about this because they don’t know about it. People might start questioning the double standard if the media took the time to point it out. The real burning question is how do we get journalism back on track?

It’s no wonder Dana Milbank has a petulant tantrum when he doesn’t get his way. The major media outlets are staffed by complete brats who can’t quit whining long enough to even do their jobs half-assed.