Political Truth and Fact.Com
Neither fair nor balanced, but absolutely factual
Communications and the new era
For decades, it was clear that the ability of the left to count on the media to sign on to any political position they chose to promote, but common sense Americans at a distinct disadvantage. After all, in politics, truth is what the people believe – no matter what the actual facts might be.
Such far left dominance of the information industry allowed the rise of a lot of nutso beliefs and position which, in more rational times, would have been laughed off the proverbial stage.
“Political Correctness” immediately comes to mind and to a lesser extent, “diversity” however that concept might be designed. Most outrageously, the Admiral who heads the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Mike Mullen, was outrageously quoted as having said “diversity” is the priority of the US Naval Academy at Annapolis. Pardon me, I have always thought the prime objective of all the military academies to be training and producing the best officers possible to lead our troops.
Media dominance also allow Al Gore to sell his man-made Global Warming scam – making a ton of money in the process.
We can all offer examples through which absurd concepts and ideas were sold to Americans primarily because the seller used our mass media – a development mostly of the twentieth century.
In an editorial recently, Internet pundit Selwyn Duke made some cogent observations on the subject and its more recent developments. Including a misuse of the capabilities. His piece said, in part:
“We have numerous sayings alluding to the power of ideas, such as “Knowledge is power,” “The pen is mightier than the sword” and “A lie can get halfway around the world before the truth can get its boots on.” And with modern forms of communication, such as radio and television — and now the Internet — ideas can be transmitted at a rate unfathomable for most of man’s existence.
“This makes civilization very unstable. Think about it: For most of history, the only relatively quick way to change a society was through military conquest, such as when Islam’s hordes turned North Africa Muslim within a century’s time. Yet, using that as an example, what would have been the Moors’ prospects for success had they been forced to rely on a few proselytizing Imams and handwritten Korans to spread their message?”
Duke continues, “but with the modern ability to disseminate information at the touch of a button, the amount of peaceful social change that might have taken 300 years to effect in the Middle Ages may be realized in only a decade today. So now a lie can get all the way around the world before the Truth even knows the liar has logged on.
“This phenomenon of rapid, haphazard change”, says Duke, “also widens generation gaps, as each generation grows up in a more radically different moral and social environment. And I should add that, contrary to popular belief, a generation gap isn’t inevitable. It only develops when the spirit of the age is constantly changing and, as a consequence, the young and old end up worshiping different ones. If, however, a culture safeguards tradition and insulates itself from competing ideas (a big “if,” I know), everyone will occupy the same page. For example, I really cannot imagine that any ancient Aztec youth ever said, “No, dad, I don’t want to sacrifice a virgin to Quetzalcoatl today! And I don’t believe in gods!”
“Now, there are those who like to deny the negative effects of these media. For example, point out that gratuitous sex and violence on television have a corruptive effect, and excuses will fly. “We may hear, ‘It’s OK because it didn’t cause me any problems,’ which is much like saying that ‘Being a long-time smoker hasn’t hurt me’ because you can’t see your blackened lungs and aren’t dead yet. Or we may hear, ‘It’s the values taught by the parents that matter,’ which is much like saying it’s of no consequence if strangers feed your children foxglove and arsenic as long as you make sure they have a good diet at home.
“In reality, these are rationalizations, only trotted out when the onus is placed on something we hold dear. During moments of clarity, however, even the most ardent cultural apologist knows that entertainment influences thinking. If this isn’t so, why was there a hue and cry to get “Amos & Andy” and other shows containing old stereotypes off the air?”
Duke concludes, “obviously, the examples people set for others matter, and this doesn’t cease being the case simply because the behavior is observed via a screen as opposed to in person. So while we can argue about the magnitude of modern entertainment’s effect, or about whether it’s on balance good or bad, that it has an effect simply isn’t disputable.”
Of course It isn’t.
The day’s top political news:
Two new rules will give Constitution a starring role in GOP-controlled House
WASHINGTON POST: When Republicans take over the House next week, they will do something that apparently has never been done before in the chamber's 221-year history:
They will read the Constitution aloud.
And then they will require that every new bill contain a statement by the lawmaker who wrote it citing the constitutional authority to enact the proposed legislation.
Call it the tea party-ization of Congress.
These are two standout changes on a long list of new rules Republicans will institute in the House when they assume the majority on Jan. 5. After handing out pocket-size Constitutions at rallies, after studying the document article by article and after demanding that Washington return to its founding principles, tea party activists have something new to applaud. A pillar of their grass-roots movement will become a staple in the bureaucracy that governs Congress.
After two years of Democratic ascendancy, Washington braces for divided government
THE ECONOMIST: LIKE Rome before its sacking, Washington is not entirely sure what to expect when the newly elected Republican-controlled House of Representatives settles down to work in the nation’s capital on January 5th. But it does know, in a general sort of way, that a certain amount of unpleasantness lies ahead.
To judge by what they say, the incoming Republicans see themselves less as Goths than as cleansers of the Augean stables. Before November’s elections they portrayed “Washington”—a constellation embracing the president, the federal government and the pork-ladling, tax-raising, freedom-crushing Congress—as a monster that trampled on the people’s rights, smothered enterprise with pointless regulation and pauperised future generations by spending money it did not have. They are promising to cut it down to size—and fast.
They do, however, face a small difficulty. For the fact is that they have not actually won control of Washington. They will control the House with a handsome majority of 242 to 193. But the Democrats will continue to have a majority, albeit a diminished one, in the Senate; and Barack Obama has at least two more years as president. Moreover, the Democrats showed during the lame-duck session in November and December that in spite of their mid-term chastisement they still have some fight left in them. Indeed, the 111th Congress ended in an unexpected parade of successes for Mr Obama, who after a cheerful, self-congratulatory press conference departed for an end-of-year holiday in Hawaii with an unmistakable swagger in his step.
Obama uses recess appointment to seat controversial Justice Dept. official
THE HILL: President Obama used a recess appointment Wednesday to name James Cole as deputy attorney general. The president also recess appointed five other officials, including four ambassadors.
Cole's nomination to the second-ranking post at the Department of Justice had been held up over objections from Republicans, who raised concerns over his tenure as an independent monitor of insurance giant AIG between 2005 and 2009. The federal government bailed out the company in 2008.
While the recess appointment allows Obama to fill a key spot at the Department of Justice, Cole will have to be renominated and confirmed by the end of the next session of Congress. That could be tougher given the larger GOP minority in the next Senate.