The Open Dimension

Commentary on social issues; politics; religion and spirituality

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Location: Laguna Hills, California, United States

I am a semi-retired psychotherapist/psychiatric social worker and certified hypnotherapist. Originally a practicing attorney, I changed careers during the 1980's. My interests include history, constitutional law, Hindustani classical music, yoga, meditation and spirituality.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Corporate Media Is Blinding and Destroying The Nation. Their Sponsors Must Be Boycotted

The idea that the media are trying to sell us; namely, that they should be neutral is an absurd misrepresentation. Historically the media was referred to as the “Fourth Estate;” and its function was viewed as that of keen observer and if necessary sharp debunker of the government. The standard to be applied was in no sense neutrality. On the contrary the standard was objectivity, which meant the accurate knowledge and reporting of what was really going on. And if what was actually going on involved incompetence, dishonesty, abuse or criminality on the part of a governmental body then the journalist’s duty was deemed to be to report to the people what the government’s infractions were. The Fourth Estate was viewed as the people’s guardians. Neutrality and objectivity are as different as night and day.
Neutrality was invented by the corporate media so prevalent today. And it really means partial facts, tedious blandness and stepping on practically no one’s toes. And of course these days it even means cheap entertainment and nonsense to distract the people from what is going on. The corporate media bosses want to keep the public basically ignorant, undisturbed, un-offended and receptive to their sales pitches. In other words like practically everything else today it’s all about the almighty buck.
How many times do you hear “Let me tell you what we found is really going on.” Granted there are still some resources for this kind of reportage; but they’re getting fewer and fewer and far between. Most often you get presentations of so many sides stating so many partial facts and misrepresentations that all you get is confused and bored. And who steps in and says “ Yes, we’ve heard all that but this is what we’ve found out from our best sources and investigations; and this is what we’ve got to be wary of.”
Journalism is an exacting vocation demanding intelligence, keen observation, integrity and a high level of tough, un-politicized and reality-based analysis. But that has fallen apart today. Today you get the kind of “ neutrality” that’s really the corporate slant, which is most often all too tolerant of the current power structure. And at its worst you get Fox News, propagandists for a particular political and social bias. Or, more bluntly, the White House’s ass kissers. Objectivity? I don’t think so. Until recently how many times did you hear one word about the blatantly obvious fact that Iraq is about oil reserves and profits?
It’s arguable that the Iraq war could have been nipped in the bud by objective reporting. An accurate presentation and assessment of the facts could well have resulted in a public outcry against the invasion. What happened instead? The press got bought by the prospect of being “embedded” and it all became just one big adventure that boosted the ratings.. Much better if they had gotten into bed with their brains and tried to determine precisely what was going on. The nation might well have been saved from a protracted hell.
We have got to start demanding more. It’s a question of numbers. The more emails that come in, the more complaints, the more threats to go elsewhere for correct information, the more nervous the corporate bosses will get and the more prone to clean up their act. And if we start boycotting the sponsors of the corporate media maybe the bosses would start getting really acute panic attacks. We don’t want to hear just the Republican slant and the Democratic slant and the damn Raccoon Lodge’s slant and on and on. We want to know what’s going on between the lines and it’s their job to get that to us. Had they been doing that all along we might have avoided some of the major messes we’re mired in now. Knock it off and get on the stick, neutrality freaks. We’re on to you.