ED (evildevil) wrote in talk_politics,

Interview with a Satirist

The 24hrs news organizations have become like a never ending wrestling matches where you have The Left vs The Right and we observers are just shouting and cheering for our team without actually having an actual conversation regarding on what really is important to us or to individuals. The media is dragging us into the "Tribal Mentality" of "Us Vs Them". The News are less about the news and more about conflict. It is all about the ratings and less about the substance. The Media has become a forum in which "journalists/pundits" are only deepening divisions, de-legitimatizing the concerns of fellow Americans whom we disagree with them in the slightest, vilifying not only politicians but fellow American citizens who support said politicians. At the end we dont have a legitimate conversation, just noise. Fox News has mastered this technique and they are good at it but the disturbing thing is that other Media institutions are trying to copy their success while decrying what many perceive to be wrong for the public (which is a contradiction). By trying to emulate Fox News recipe for success we are just legitimatizing their agenda.

One example of this madness that we call the News it was the whole "Mysterious Cloud Stream Witnessed in California" was turned into "Mysterious Missile Launch:  Are We at War?" by the 24hrs cycle. Now many on the Media blame the Pentagon for not responding quickly to their inquiry. The problem here is that the 24hrs news media seems to forget that not everyone is living/driving at the fast-speed lane or they seem to forget that the Pentagon has to deal with bureaucratic and security clearances before they can respond to the Media (that is their policy on anything, no matter how mundane or banal). In essence, the news cycle has become like the Fast Food Industry: quick to prepare, no nutritional value, and cheap. (In actuality the Media is not the main culprit of this but speed is the currency which the News Media survive, the quicker you get the information out the better the ratings you get. Our society has become a "fast society" in which we demand everything immediately. We want our food fast, we want responses fast, we want satisfaction fast, and we want information fast.)

The problem here is that the 24hrs news Media is becoming more like entertainment or infotainment. In the land of reality there are not enough events to fill out the 24hrs cycle, so what do they do? They create their own reality: fill up the absence of anything interesting, stretch it as long as you can, or fill it with believable garbage to finally create a new reality.

Now, I dont like Bush. I disagree with that man in a lot of things but I do not think he is Hitler or evil (or at least he doesnt necessarily sees himself as being evil). He is what I think an example of "The Road to Hell is paved with good intentions" phrase was created for. I believe that on Bush's mind he made the world safe, he believes that Saddam was just preparing to one day get his hands on weapons to target his enemies, but "we" (and I mean we in the sense of Bush and America) stopped him before such scenario took place (this is a big IF that I take it with a grain of salt).

I really truly think that Bush tried to find loopholes on the law regarding the issue of torture so he could save American lives, but I dont believe he did it because Bush has a sadistic personality. To me he is just a dufus well intentioned patriot that made choices that many of us find questionable. What Code Pink did during Bush's Presidency did not help to maintain a dialogue regarding the War issue. Their behavior was more props and less about conversations (the Media didnt take them that seriously, they got far less coverage compared to the Angry Town Halls. Again, Angry Town Halls makes better TV than a bunch of old ladies with red paint on their hands, no offense).

But unless we have a serious discussion regarding the decisions and choices that Bush did without becoming a Media Circus in which we paint him as some sort of monster we will never have serious discussions on what went wrong or why he did it. The conversation is already alienating as it is, but the worst part is that the Media (both left and the right) failed to point these controversial decisions in the beginning or even before the war took place, and to bring it now would seem partisan in Nature. If the Media had done its job in the beginning, the nature of this conversation will be totally different... and the ones to blame is the Media who failed to do their duty to inform the public of the dangers ahead of us, instead they either cheered or cowered from their responsibility for fear of retaliation.

As for the Tea Party, I will leave this:

These people might be individuals being played by powerful ideological organizations, but they are part of a movement of genuine anger. So let's try to figure out why these people are so angry instead of dismissing the Tea Party as a whole.

It all comes down to this, when Jon Stewart is making fun of the right, he is heralded as a Hero. When he makes fun of the left they accuse him of "False Equivalence". The Right dismisses Jon Stewart as some comedian as if that was an insult, while the Left keeps pressuring him to get more involved in their cause (the ideological left cause) as if that is his responsibility.

Comedy is about poking fun of others without taking sides, it is about being an equal opportunity offender.

Now, many say that since Stewart is involved in making jokes and comments that regards the nature of the media or that it involves politics in nature, that makes him somehow responsible and influential on the current political discourse. That Jon Stewart has a responsibility to become part of the "Loud Media Machine". He wont, he doesnt want to, he is a comedian, a satirist, a commentator but he knows his place. If he becomes too involved on this field that he knows he doesnt belong, he stops being a comedian and he becomes something else:

"There Is No Honor In What I Do But I Do It As Honorably As I Can."
-- Jon Stewart.
Tags: interview, media, society

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