Monday, June 27, 2016

Corporate Media Drains You of the Energy to Consume Anything but Corporate Media

Fellow American citizens, you are surrounded by clear-headed individuals who are using plain language to report on the world exactly as it is, but you'll never even notice these folks as long as you keep staring into the black hole of corporate news.

You know full well that the job of CNN is to distract you from troublesome facts and inconvenient information by ignoring some stories and coating others in a veneer of impotent moral outrage. You don't (and can't) expect Wolf Blitzer to diagnose the 2016 election with anything approaching lucidity. But since it's no trouble to turn on the tube and passively soak up lies and distortions, you let access-based reporters tell you how the world isn't instead of letting research-based journalists such as Chris Hedges tell you how it is, as in this excerpt from a recent article for TruthDig:
The liberal class refuses to fight for the values it purports to care about. It is paralyzed and trapped by the induced panic manufactured by the systems of corporate propaganda. The only pressure within the political system comes from corporate power. With no counterweight, with no will on the part of the liberal class to defy the status quo, we slide deeper and deeper into corporate despotism. The repeated argument of the necessity of supporting the “least worse” makes things worse.
People ignore such points out of convenience, not stupidity. It's easy to follow Hedges' logic, but even easier to have a newscast playing in the background while doing household chores. Why should you spend time reading thoughtful political commentary when the only result of doing so is the sense that you're now duty-bound to demand accountability in government?

Your job is hard. Your family is demanding. You're tired and you need a little downtime, so you drown out your own memories of how terrible the Clintons have been with fanciful narratives from MSNBC about how terrible Trump might be. You let Rachel Maddow spew nonsense into your ear instead of heeding Michael Howard when he writes:
[T]he notion that voting third party is a reckless and ultimately dangerous decision is losing its cogency, if it ever had any to begin with. Third-party voters—and hopefully there are many more of them this time around—understand that meaningful change in this country presupposes a subversion of our inveterate two-party (or two-factions-of-the-same-party) political system. By “holding your nose” and voting for Wall Street’s vetted candidate, you are casting a vote for the system itself, and you’re hindering real progress. And all for the sake of… what, exactly? Expediency? It’s always rich to hear establishment pundits charge the #NeverHillary crowd with myopia. Nothing could be further from the truth. In trying to establish a viable third party, one not subservient to the economic elite, these voters have an eye to the distant future, one in which the U.S. actually functions as a democracy. How short-sighted of them!
Do Hedges and Howard sound like petulant brats--or like adult human beings who have seen firsthand what we accomplish by electing the less obnoxious servant of plutocracy every four years?

The main lesson we should all have learned about Hillary Clinton by now is that she wouldn't be inevitable if we weren't already convinced of her inevitability. The important corollary of this lesson, however, is that we wouldn't be convinced of her inevitability if not for a few dozen highly paid, well-placed Clintonite mouthpieces assuring us of her inevitability 24/7.

Let's say that you're a person with a sweet tooth who is trying to lose weight. You take pains to eliminate all forms of candy and dessert from your house, but your paper boy starts including a complimentary chocolate doughnut with your daily paper. Is the paper boy helping you out--or tempting you to backslide into self-destructive behavior?

Now let's say that you're a person with limited free time trying to help build a better future. You take pains to educate yourself about political realities, but the New York Times and Washington Post and every other major news publication in the country keep inserting themselves into your Facebook feed with stories about how you had better settle for Clinton to avoid Trump. Are those news sources helping you out--or tempting you to backslide into self-destructive behavior?

We're killing each other. We're killing the world. We're killing ourselves. And the only reason we accept this reality is because the articles we read from the Wall Street Journal, the stories we hear from NPR, and the reports we soak up from cable news all tell us this is the way things have to be and that any attempt to bring change will only make things worse.

Please dig deep enough within yourself to find the energy required to tune that garbage out. Please don't allow the corporate shills to manufacture your consent for the destruction of your political voice.

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