Monday, January 18, 2010

It's Not the Democrats Fault. Or the President's Fault. It's the Media. Still.

Okay. To continue piling on the media, who is so deserving, here is a short post from Bob Cesca:

"On Morning Joe just now, Tom Brokaw was complaining that Americans don't know what's in the healthcare reform bill. Scarborough laughing the background. As if this is the fault of the Democrats and the president.
You know what, Mr. Brokaw? This is your fault, sir. You and your colleagues.
The television news media has a responsibility to explain policy and, specifically, this legislation to the American people, and the television news media has failed in lieu of the Letterman and Tiger Woods underpants party. The television news media has failed in lieu of manufacturing "smackdown" drama. The television news media has failed on so many levels to deliver the readily available details of healthcare reform to the American viewing public.
So when you guys sit around and bullshit about how people don't know anything about policy, don't blame anyone but yourselves."
Normally I just excerpt, but this is short, to the point, and I couldn't say it any better.

Thanks for stopping by. Come back soon.


  1. Bravo!
    They needed a good ass kicking.

  2. No, it's the fault of the American people. They don't understand that the best healthcare systems in the world are government run and it's done at half the cost per capita of the American system in most cases. Americans still don't understand that government can do some things better. It's gotta be the old socialist commie plot ya know.

    So the situation is: You need healthcare reform because the status quo is going to bankrupt your country. The repubs are determined that it won't be goverment run. Private enterprise won't give up any of it's profits and therefore nothing meaningful will be done. I'd say you're screwed!

  3. Anonymous,

    Absolutely. The Amnerican people do not understand. I agree that there are some things that we need government to do and that government does better (look at Medicare). I do say, however, that journalists are not doing their job when they serve as stenographers for politicians and do not ask hard questions or follow up errors or what are clearly lies. It's hard for the American people to make good decisions when they lack good information. Not everyone has the time to educate themselves even if they knew how.

  4. I would say that you need to stop relying on journalists to bring about change. They are in the business of playing to the wishes of their sponsors more than anything, along with playing to popular opinion. You need to recognize that popular opinions are not in accord with what you and I know about government's ability to do some things better. Big corps and big business has done a great job convincing Americans that doing anything else than the status quo and expecting government to play a positive role is socialism.

    The rest of the world has moved on and your country can too if the people are willing to enable Obama by demanding that he be allowed to make the changes he promised. To blame him at every turn when it's so patently obvious that the lack of 60% in congress is the problem is just plain foolish. To begin with, that fact alone has caused your government to be dysfunctional.

    If it's not changed by the end of Obama's first term then the inevitable change will be put off for perhaps another dacade, and possibly two. That could be enough to bring your country down.

    If you have an interest in learning what's wrong, read Will Hutton's, A Declaration of Interdependence. He spelt it out clearly for American over five years ago. You will be amazed at how much he had right!

  5. Anonymous,
    Did I say I was relying on journalists to bring about change? Of course not. What I am asking is that journalists do their job; the reason for our 1st Amendment. Without information, Americans cannot make good decisions. When all the media is held in the hands of a few corporations, it's difficult for individual journalists to be anything other than a stenographer, but a few try.

    Of course popular opinion is not in accord with what I know about government's ability. I also know what corporations and the Republican Party have done over the past 40 years to influence that opinion.

    Your comments about Obama are a little confusing. You're saying we should demand that Obama be allowed to make the changes he promised, then say blaming him when it is Congress that is the problem is just plain foolish. Which is it? How can we demand he do anything if Congress is the problem (according to you?). You make it sound very simple, and it is not. Congress is a huge part of the problem, as is Obama choosing not to use his bully pulpit (if you want to learn how a president can use his bully pulpit to get things done, study Lyndon Johnson). The other huge part of the problem is a media that distorts the message, selects which news stories to air or print, and allows politicians to lie with impunity.

    Although there is much to be admired about the systems in place in some of the European countries, I still believe that our system, run properly, is a good one. A purely socialist, government-centered society as advocated by Hutton is not one that would work in this country nor, in my opinion, should it.

    The stratification of American society has a unique history, and although disparity between rich and poor exists all over the world, and distinctions of class exist, the pure size and cultural diversity of this country intersect with other factors to create a system in which nothing but a democracy such as we have could hold it together. To attempt to impose a top-down system of government on a country already feeling alienated by those living in the Washington bubble is simply not going to happen.

    Our country has been on the verge of collapse, according to some, for a long time and we manage to pull through. We will continue, change will happen--although perhaps not as fast as we would like.

    You have an interesting take on what you think is wrong with this country. I agree with some of what you have to say but disagree with your solutions. As a sociologist who has studied politics and social stratification for many years, I can say with some certainty that there are no simple solutions. I'm always interested in learning, but there is no one person or book who has the answers either to what is wrong or what to do about the problem.

  6. Dear silly Kyra, What I am saying is that Obama is powerless in the face of a dysfunctional Congress which can hold up any real progress because of the fact that it takes 60% to pass anything. Therefore it is up to the American people to demand that the dysfunctionality of your government be halted. Now what's so difficult about that?? You've got a huge majority so take to the streets dear and leave old glory home in the closet this time.

    From a Canadian POV your media is more slanted toward the left than it is toward the right. But bear in mind that if you expect to hear honest and impartial journalism from Fox News (on the right) or MSNBC (on the left) then you are going to wait forever and be disappointed. Try Newshour on PBS. Or try changing the simpleton mentality of the American people who have been taken in by all the political pap being spewed by those with an ability to get the message out.

    So you think your country will pull through do you? Now you're starting to wave the flag girl and good for you. While you wave your flag you will ensure that you will not see any need for real change.

    Your country stands at #37 in healthcare rating by the WHO. Your infant mortality rate is higher than Cuba's. Your life expectancy is lower than all other industrialized Western countries. Your country's standard of living has declined to 10th. which is worse than all other Western industrialized countries. Maybe it's time for you Americans to stop waving the flag and telling us that you are an example for the rest of us to look up to?? Or maybe you would just like to go on pretending?

    Now if there is something that I say that you don't agree with, why not spit it out and save the sociologist tripe for the Russians. Perhaps come to the terrible understanding that socially responsible government is not socialism and you will be halfway there to being a real advocate for change. In the meantime Canada and the rest of the forward thinking countries of the world are laughing at America.

    Have a nice kcufing day!

    p.s. Oh, and did I mention that your country's income inequality is fast approaching equaling Mexico! LOL

  7. kyra,

    Anonymous who is posting here is actually Straight Goods. He has been approaching other people through my blog as well. I believe that you are moderated. Don't post this because it only riles him up further.

    I am sorry I didn't get back to you sooner, I had health things to deal with. My site is moderated now, if you would like to know more send me a note.


  8. Vera, You're exactly right, I am Straight Goods. But you're wrong to think that anything riles me.

    But why do you want to censor me? The worst thing I have done is try to take a rational approach to the anti-Palin blogs by getting away from the old hens nitpicking and into a closer look at what is with Palin.

    Has it something to do with the anon @ 6"58 thing? I think you should be realizing by now that you blew that totally out of proportion by falling in with the mainstream old hens attitude that if it doesn't beat up on Palin then it must be bad or it must be a troll defending Palin.

    So considering that I'm anti-Palin too but with a different tact on the matter, why do you want me censored?

  9. Kyra, Just to reiterate what I said on the dysfunctionality of your government. This supreme court ruling is once again standing directly in the way of any real change by Obama. It's always 5-4, 5-4 isn't it. Now your supreme court has become the laughing stock of the world. Corruption right to the core in the judicial branch of your government too!

    However, this could turn out to be a good thing! Imagine if popular opinion caused the supreme court to have to reverse their decision!!! Is it at all possible?

    It's so outrageous and the fact that some repubs have to be opposed (McCain/Feingold remember) that it could be the populist issue that Obama could ride on now.

    This is just another example of what I'm talking about when I say Obama's hands are tied. The supreme court has ensured it now. Are you getting this? Obama needs to go with a half dozen good solid populist issues and take them to the people. It's his last hope and your country's last hope of standing off the corruption the repubs will bring back in November.

  10. Straight Goods or whomever,
    I don't mind a good discussion, but not with someone who can't read. Have a nice day.