mad in pursuit: greed & arrogance

2004 political season

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10.28.04 Outfoxed

We're catching up on the political documentaries before the election on Tuesday. Last night we watched Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism (2004). Filmmaker Robert Greenwald taped days of Fox News broadcasts to make his point that the channel is anything but "fair and balanced." In today's world there is little to keep billionaires from buying up media outlets to push their own (just-give-me-all-your-money) world views. As we see night after night on "reality" shows, people will do anything for money -- and so Murdoch can get journalists willing to give any slant to get their faces on international television. Talk about power. It's enough to make you want to rip your eyeballs out.

The sad fact is that there is little integrity left in journalism (and don't get me started on pollsters). It takes money to chase down news sources and money is made by snuggling up to those in power. Fox has the power, Fox gets the good interviews (that support those in power), so Fox makes the money, which gives them the power, etc. etc. I hear rumors that CNN audiences are shrinking, so they are trying to get Foxy -- joining the opinionated loudmouths and getting soft on the Administration. They certainly aren't providing good journalism these days. (Has Christiane Amanpour been totally stifled??)

I recommend looking at the Media Matters for America site:

a Web-based, not-for-profit progressive research and information center dedicated to comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media. Conservative misinformation is defined as news or commentary presented in the media that is not accurate, reliable, or credible and that forwards the conservative agenda.

Take, for example, this issue of the missing explosives in Iraq. Because the facts are jumbled and the Administration is silent, the story is a playground for partisan point-scoring. Fox and other conservative minions are making one set of interpretations, then I go to Talking Points Memo because I think that Josh Marshall is at least trying to figure out what the facts are (from his admittedly progressive perspective).

I'll be glad when this election is over, but the media woes will persist. If Bush wins -- oy, integrity and competence continues its death spiral. If Kerry wins, he will suffer the dreadful death by a thousand pinpricks that Clinton had to endure for 8 years.

Old Chinese curse: May you live in interesting times.





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