Originally posted as a note on my Facebook page.
The long & short of the ongoing "fiscal crisis" is that it is, at this point, an artificially manufactured crisis that is causing serious real-world issues. The delusion & deceptive "national conversation" that the traditional media insists on promoting isn't helping.
Case in point: a piece from the Washington Post1 makes the following statement:
Ideally, the budget environment for weather and climate research wouldn’t be an either/or situation. State of the art computing resources should be available to both areas.But during a time when our nation faces a fiscal crisis and the government is having to make tough choices about what the highest priorities are - leadership within NOAA and Congress should take a close look at the balance of resources...
There are a couple of things wrong with that. The first one that leaps out and grabs my face like one of the creatures from Alien is "during a time when our nation faces a fiscal crisis" - really? Simply letting the Bush-era tax cuts for the rich expire would substantially resolve that, but the fiscally feral Republican, Tea Party & Libertarian extremists keep pushing for more tax breaks for the wealthy...hoping, apparently, that the rest of the nation is either too pre-occupied or distracted to notice just how much damage that those tax cuts have done, or who has benefited. Make the jump»
The trailer for "The President's Speech" was introduced by President Obama at the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner. It's an excellent hat-tip to the movie "The King's Speech" and a great response to those who have obsessed about the President's teleprompter.
Campaign 2012 is apparently off to a roaring start, and if this and if the President's performance at the dinner are any indication, it will be a doozy of a campaign cycle with the ridiculous multitude of conspiracy theories and high-school level hijinks of the Tea Party, the Birthers and the GOP's conservative "leadership" getting schooled for their complete avoidance of real-world problems.
As it should be.
We shouldn't have had to wait until this latest campaign cycle for the Democrats and for the news media to start pushing back against the enhanced levels of Kabuki theater in a Potemkin village that has infiltrated & taken over Washington DC politics. That's something that the media, in particular, should have capably dismissed all throughout the news cycle instead of presenting the conspiracy theories and propaganda as serious issues that reality-based individuals actually debated and cared about.
The media failed, and let a politically motivated messaging machine almost completely supplant the news cycle.
That, alone, is reason enough to put out a call to all those who complain about the traditional media's failure and encourage them to step up as citizen journalists, helping organizations like ePluribus Media bring back the voice and interests of the People, by the People, for the People.
Oh, boy -- the slings and arrows are just beginning to fly, and this time it looks like FOX News may have bitten off more than it can chew. And it got bitten back in return. Check out the following video from Media Matters TV (Hat-tip Bob in ABQ of DelphiForums and the Huffington Post):Make the jump»
Heh ... this is funny. :) Check it out. Promoted. -- GH
Which brings me to the brilliant satire of the media's pathetic failure to separate truth from lies, logic from silliness, relevance from trivia, in the health care debate.
Make the jump»
That didn't take long?
I'm ambivalent about whether even to acknowledge this obviously disturbed, Cheneyite rant from Joe Klein. On the one hand, I don't want to be dragged down into what is, for him, quite clearly a deeply emotional and personal matter (having its roots in things like this, this and this); I don't think very many people care about petty feuds and engaging them isn't the purpose of what I do here. Moreover, Klein's commenters (as usual) have done a thorough and masterful job of demolishing what he wrote, as have several others. On the other hand, when someone like Klein -- first in a secret club composed of several hundred journalists, editors, bloggers and other peers and colleagues, and then using a megaphone like Time -- repeatedly calls you a military-hating, unpatriotic, ignorant, Limbaugh-like, "mean-spirited, dishonorable, graceless, bully" who doesn't care if America Stays Safe, and that then is "reported" in various places, it's probably prudent to say something. So I'll just make a couple of general points illustrated by all of this that I think are worth making: (Read On...)
There's nothing quite like having information at your fingertips. The internet provides a vast wealth of information, some good and some bad; when you know where to go, however, and successfully navigate the streams of data to validate, verify and cross-reference your information, the internet can be almost as good as having the entire Library of Congress (and Alexandria, etc.) for fact-checking.
However, "accuracy" will always be a goal, with "perfection" as being the ultimate -- and least likely -- final stop. Everybody makes mistakes. It's human nature.
In a recent AP story that appeared in the LA Times, a small but potentially significant error identifying the narcotic hydrocodone as "another name for Ibuprofen" scooted past the editors and fact checkers: Make the jump»
From the folks at JibJab, an interesting -- and unfortunately accurate -- take on the relative state of "The News" as it exists in the US traditional media outlets today:
Perhaps this is why the growth, expansion, validation and acceptance of citizen journalism draws an ever-growing audience...?