Tag Archives | Media

Debating Poverty At The United Nations: Do The Media Hate The Poor?

United Nations, New York: One is always proud to be invited to speak at the United Nations, one of the few global institutions that is still taken seriously, and that can generate international resolutions and shape programs free of total domination by the big powers.  

When you are an outsider like I am, it’s a bit of an ego boost to think that the world might be listening to little old you, and that, at least for one session, you are among the chosen to hold forth on something serious in what critics deride as ‘The House of Babble.’

endgame_600x337

I have been around the world body for years, even as recipient of a prize for a TV documentary from the UN Correspondents Association  (UNCA). In that case, the film offered a strong critique of the UN cockup in Bosnia, but then, the award was presented to me by the then (and sixth) UN  Secretary General Boutros-Boutros Ghali, who clearly hadn’t seen it

So, yes there is pretense and hypocrisy,  but there are also sincere and dedicated people—diplomats and international civil servents– working to improve the world.… Read the rest

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The Olympics Are Here To Stay—And To Pay

Vladimir Putin - Olympic HostThe Winter Olympics are off and running, and the media focus is about the threat of terrorism, Putin’s motives in holding it, and why a backward town in the old Soviet Union that has been a center of human rights abuse for years is somehow, surprise, surprise, not up to the luxury standards in Los Angeles or Park City Utah (especially for reporters who bitch the most!)

As the Guardian noted,

“every Olympics experienced pre-Games jitters: in London there was the last-minute panic over security guards that resulted in the army being called in; in Vancouver there were street protests and a fatality on the luge course; and the runup to Beijing was clouded by human-rights protests during the torch relay.”

The politics of it is always conspicuous by its presence; the economic agenda behind it conspicuous by its absence.

Every day, the stories are more and more absurd:  The Russians are blocking a delivery of Greek yogurt for our figure skaters or rounding up stray dogs—features like that.… Read the rest

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When Mainstream Media’s Narrative Collapses: Building 7

wtc-building-7-mapvia chycho

It’s been years since I met anyone that still believes in the official government story of the lone gunman. For obvious reasons of course, since you would have to be completely obtuse to hold onto such simplistic perceptions of the world – not to mention to having no understanding of physics at all.

For those that continue to encounter such people, the only advice I have is to sit down with your loved ones, or those that you would like to educate, and have them read or watch a little Bill Hicks.

Bill Hicks – JFK

Further information on the JFK assassination at: “Oswald, the CIA, and Mexico City”, and “The Death Of John Kennedy: The Media helped sell the lie of the lone assassin”.

As we all know, throughout history our governments and politicians have lied. They have conspired to obtain power, to overthrow governments, to destroy their political rivals, and to make money.… Read the rest

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Hannibal Lecter Isn’t a Psychopath, But You Might Be

Robert Stroud (Birdman of Alcatraz). Mug shot ...

Robert Stroud (Birdman of Alcatraz). Mug shot 29 October 1951. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) (PD)

It appears that the many forms of media may have skewed the common perception of what a psychopath is and how they appear.

via QUARTZ

Some of the most famous psychopaths of the silver screen are anything but, according to an extensive analysis by forensic psychiatrist Samuel Leistedt. In fact, you probably have the wrong idea about psychopaths in general—and you almost certainly know a few.

A psychopath, Leistedt told ScienceNews, is someone who lacks empathy. “They’re cold-blooded,” he said. “They don’t know what emotion is.” To create a cinema-based curriculum for teaching psychiatry students about psychopaths—and about how popular perception of them has shifted over time—Leistedt watched 400 movies depicting psychopaths (and “sociopaths”—some distinguish between the two, but there’s no official diagnostic difference) and diagnosed each and every one of their featured villains. Once he weeded out supernatural characters, he was left with 105 male and 21 female characters to analyze with a team of 10 forensic scientists.

Read the rest

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It’s Not Just the Mainstream Media That Is Scripted to Manufacture Consent, so Are Our Politicians

mainstreammediaindexvia chycho

To say that mainstream media is controlled is an understatement. We’ve gone far past the time of relatively semi-covert CIA programs such as Operation Mockingbird where “some 3,000 salaried and contract CIA employees were eventually engaged in propaganda efforts.” Those days are long gone; the mainstream media is now openly scripted (2-pdf) to manufacture consent.

“We’re not analyzing the media on Mars or in the eighteenth century or something like that. We’re dealing with real human beings who are suffering and dying and being tortured and starving because of policies that we are involved in, we as citizens of democratic societies are directly involved in and are responsible for, and what the media are doing is ensuring that we do not act on our responsibilities, and that the interests of power are served, not the needs of the suffering people, and not even the needs of the American people who would be horrified if they realized the blood that’s dripping from their hands because of the way they are allowing themselves to be deluded and manipulated by the system.” – Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media, 1992

Manufacturing Consent: Thought Control in a Democratic Society

For example, in the following three videos, Conan O’Brien’s Team Coco provide excerpts from a few mainstream media ‘news’ outlets, showing the full extent of the homogeneity of the script.

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Happy News Year: ‘The News Dissector’ Looks Beyond The Top Stories of the Year to Examine the News System

Times Square,New York CC-BY-SAAt year end, the news agenda fills up with stories on top stories, a chance for networks to repackage footage or highlight favorite newsmakers.  These stories rarely look at the news system that picks them or why.

There are two news systems in America–the official parody of journalism that represents most of what the mainstream or what some call the “lame stream” media offers.

These are the “products” an “official” news business, an industry now under growing pressure from within and without to maintain a semblance of credibility with an  global audience that has so many other divergent sources to rely on or suck information from.

A part of a global entertainment combine, the advertising sponsored “news biz” also spends inordinate amounts of money marketing itself and referencing its own output.

It is that system that has become one of the major pillars of established power like the institutions of government and the office holders it covers to a fault.… Read the rest

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The Stories of Our Lives: How Today’s Ideas Will Become Tomorrow’s Viral Mythology

Correa-Martians_vs._Thunder_ChildCitizens of the nation: I shall not try to conceal the gravity of the situation that confronts the country, nor the concern of your government in protecting the lives and property of its people…we must continue the performance of our duties each and every one of us, so that we may confront this destructive adversary with a nation united, courageous, and consecrated to the preservation of human supremacy on this earth….

—From Mercury Theatre on Air, War of the Worlds, 1938

             On Sunday, October 30, at 8 p.m., something happened that would send people all over the country into a panic. The year was 1938, and a radio broadcast came over the airwaves that would shock its listeners into running for the hills—well, those who weren’t able to tune in from the start and here Orson Welles say that he, on behalf of the Mercury Theatre on the Air, was about to present War of the Worlds by H.G.… Read the rest

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Is There Really A War on Christmas? Evangelical Christian Author Says No

War_on_ChristmasWell, that depends on who you talk to.

If you go on over to  Fox Nation, you can bet your stocking there is. If you watch The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, it’s a seasonal running gag. But what of the people who actively celebrate the Christmas
holiday? You’d be surprised to find just how militant Christians aren’t about the celebration
of the Winter Solstice.

VIA USA Today

Nothing in evangelical Christian author Rachel Held Evans’ five years of blogging has gone as viral as her simple little flowchart to determine if one is being persecuted during the Christmas season.

“Did someone threaten your life, safety, civil liberties or right to worship?” it asks. No. “Did someone wish you happy holidays?” Yes.

“You are not being persecuted,” it says.

At last count, the post had attracted more than 700 comments, the vast majority in agreement with her.

Call it the backlash against the “war on Christmas” camp — a number of evangelicals distancing themselves from those concerned that the department store greeter said “happy holidays,” that the Nativity scene is gone from the local courthouse, that classrooms are hosting “winter parties.”

“God became flesh and lived among us, and if that’s not enough for people, I think they’ve missed the point,” said Evans, who lives in Dayton, Tenn., and wrote last year’s best-selling book, “A Year of Biblical Womanhood.”

Still, the idea that there’s a national war on Christmas is going strong.

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Impartial Media Matters, But Is It Possible?

A human’s understanding of the world is dependent upon their perspective. It’s incredibly hard to argue otherwise. Any notion of “impartiality” is defined by your particular interpretation of the definition of that word. Broadcast media can only provide a point of view and, in my opinion, is far more honest if it keeps that in mind.

The weirdness of being able to broadcast radio and television signals across vast distances seems to have confused the logic of the pre-internet world. The rise of “broadcast media” throughout the 20th Century brought the idea that someone could be “impartial” and “objective” when relating their story. It was an incredibly important concept and some people even believed it was possible.

This short debate is cut from my podcast, predated the awful Jimmy Savile revelations and initially appeared on another podcast called Radio Talk in 2011:

Belief in this absurd notion that “journalists” can somehow detach themselves from their perspectives was used to justify various Governments restricting the number of broadcasting licences allowed in their territories.… Read the rest

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The Battle Over The Future of Journalism is Becoming More Intense

free pressNew York, NY: I was among the many media wannabe reformers to attend the tenth anniversary party of Free Press, the mostly online organization and lobby that promotes itself as a movement to transform our media system, and save our democracy.

I certainly support their policy goals like net neutrality and curbs on media consolidation,  and also admire their staying power, even if their style is very upwardly mobile, and rather un-left like, starting with this trendy soireee in an ultra modern upscale hotel lounge where drinks went for $15.00.

Free Press has been very effective in raising large sums of money using top-down means of organizing support.  (To be honest, as the editor of Mediachannel.org, a site that is barely holding on, I am a bit jealous of their evident skills as fundraisers and organization builders.)

I would like to see them do more to encourage other progressive groups to do more than electoral politics and take on media issues.… Read the rest

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