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Media Eating Its Head

In Excerpts of Prose, NEWS AND COMMENTARY, SANDY SCRUPLES on October 31, 2009 at 1:53 PM

Will the media eat its own head before this is resolved? Or will they stand by and watch the Washington political theater eat its own head before eating theirs?

My father once said that people in business often run into one of two problems: Either one, the formula that buys their success no longer works and a new successful formula cannot be found. Or two, the formula stays the same with the exception of bringing in any more success.

At least with the first option there is hope that if you change the formula, then a new success is possible. The other option, he said, is the definition of crazy.

My father professed his failure to be a good businessman. Good businessman?

In this day and age, the definition is not so simple as to be explained in a single sentence. So I ask you, how do I define a good businessperson in one sentence?

Furthermore, on behalf of my grandmother, how do I define a liberal and how do I define a conservative—in this day and age with a single, clear sentence?

“I am not a political person and human banality is something I both expect and forgive,” said Tennessee Williams. Today, I don’t know what is worse about our current political theater: the politicking in Washington or the media covering it. The two elements feed off each other incessantly and not necessarily for the benefit of the people or the audience. But the people are the ones who watch the media coverage and deliver the attention that quantifies and qualifies the ratings. The people are also responsible for their elected officials. Never before has the quote by Mr. Williams struck with such clear irony. Never before has it frightened me. Forgiveness may not be so easily won at this juncture.

While the political scene in Washington remains the subject of the media coverage, the picture illustrated is full of confusion and for someone such as myself, I find the issues almost impossible to comprehend. I do not know what the solution could be on any number of the partisan issues on the table. I do know that the infighting seems to detract from accomplishing a significant result. The purpose seems lost to those in Washington and the media coverage has grown tiresome, indulging in words as opposed to action.

Are you making the country safer for your children and their children?” I want to ask both the news industry as well as the political players to consider why our country was founded and why these reasons have endured to this day. I would like someone to please define through both word and deed, the meaning of patriotism, not nationalism. Why? Because I cannot be a true patriot if I do not understand how to be in this day and age. Without a strong leader, the passing of the torch from one generation to the next will yield tragic results.

I have faith in what we have accomplished and love for our nation. The American people are full of potential and the desire to reach their potential.

The media, however they portray the partisan debate in Washington, depends greatly on this nation for its survival. They need to stop expecting human banality and forgiving it in Washington. The audience in turn, needs to raise the standard and demand this of the great media machine.

While I am no great mind or expert in these matters, the simple mantra, Less Is More may be worth considering. Specifically, less infighting and more debating on the issues. It sounds like the idealism of youth but how are they to achieve a more substantial result? Do you know?

Explain the issues clearly to us. Explain why one point of view is different from another point of view. We are no fools, your audience, and we expect results. We need you, the media and the politicians, to achieve results before this whole monster eats its own head.

For this Halloween, I’m Sandy Scruples.

UPDATE:

I cover several key topics broadly in this entry and have been urged to focus more on the individual themes. I welcome the constructive criticism and will heed the advice. Please continue to comment and share your thoughts. Meanwhile, I will be working on several follow-up pieces. If you identify a topic that warrants further exploration, please let me know and I will welcome the suggestion.

  1. Enjoyed the piece. The Economic solutions lie in understanding the Austrian School of Economics. The social solutions lies in “individual rights” a concept that the politicans have managed to muddy beyond imagination.
    You pack a lot into the piece. May be better to write seperate piece for each thought. Thank you.

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  2. The problem is due to lies but is intense because the lies are about things that are important. It is deception. We are going to be badly hurt by their agenda. Our children’s lives and freedom are important to us. The fate of our nation is in the hands of an enemy hidden by lies. That our government has lied to us and the news media is keeping us in the dark is outrageous. The government has an agenda that is not in our best interests. We need to know what they are doing and the media as a tool of a “shadow government” is preventing us.

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    • Thank you for taking the time to comment on this post. You gave me a lot to think about.

      I must point out my personal feelings towards words like, “lie” and “enemy” because I do not apply them lightly. I am not intending to encourage the idea that our government, or the media, are enemies of the people. The enemy of America, in my opinion, are forces in the world that want to see her destroyed and who will stop at nothing to harm this beautiful country.

      I am encouraging the media to step up to the plate and support our folks in Washington by informing the public as opposed to entertaining them.

      In turn, I am encouraging the folks in Washington to focus on informing the people of America as opposed to entertaining the mainstream media.

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  3. Very nice. I had to read it twice to get an idea of what your point was, but that’s probably because I’m sleepy and incoherent.

    I’d like to see you inject one other thing into your thinking, and see what you have to say about it. IMO, much of the problem is shared dishonesty. Obama lies (as do most politicians of all parties), and the media dutifully reports the lies without any critical thinking or challenges.

    I think it was Glenn Beck who voice my opinion on this quite well: I’d actually have some respect for Obama if he stood in front of a microphone and tried to sell me on Marxism and “benevolent dictatorship.” I’d try to get him removed from office in an instant, but I’d still RESPECT him for being honest about his goals and motives. Nothing pisses me off more than the fact that he and his kind are trying to accomplish the agenda under the cover of darkness through lies, deceit. And nothing pisses me off more than the fact that the media is either hopelessly stupid, or complicit in all this.

    In short, I think a total lack of honesty has a lot to do with why they’re eating each others’ heads.

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    • And nothing pisses me off more than the fact that the media is either hopelessly stupid, or complicit in all this.

      I love strong feedback. Appreciation for constructive criticism never fails to serve us all well. Thank you for pointing out what is at the heart of the concern. Are the politicians serving the media or the people? Are the media outlets remaining complicit for their own business objectives or because they actually BELIEVE the “honesty” warrants one perspective vs. another?

      I’ve seen things up close due to my work in media and have great respect for the industry overall. In particular, a voice making headlines today, Andrew Breitbart, gives Glenn Beck almost all the source material apropos of your comments. His websites, bighollywood.com and biggovernment.com — launched recently — are full of a new media that counters the complicity felt in the mainstream media. Currently ranked 17 on Technorati’s list, they are fast up and coming resources for good Op/Ed Commentary.

      My favorite resource for understanding the theater of American Politics and MSM comes from Victor Davis Hanson. Visit his website, http://www.victorhanson.com and read the voice of an American Patriot who is stepping into history. You can also catch his articles in the Wall Street Journal, New York Post, Pajamas Media, National Review Online, etc….

      I wish Tony Snow were alive today to explain this all to me as he once did so well. The voice of clarity and honesty in these times is an asset to us all. I wish these voices could be heard as the majority but I am afraid, they still remain as a small but strong minority.

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