Fukushima Daiichi Update

Fukushima Workers

I squeezed some of this topic into a recent podcast on My Podcasts on YouTube. It’s important to know that the Fukushima reactor is still not fully scrapped and that while radiation levels are low they are also not decreasing by any significant measure in all recent online published studies.

Resources and Blogs:

IAEA Updates

The Guardian Reporting On Worker Death In Decommission Process; accidental death by all reports and not a direct failure of TEPCO to safeguard their employees health and well-being in this specific case.

Fukushima Update Blog (LA Times Reporters)

Fukushima Diary (Iori Mochizuki)

Radiation Warning

My YouTube Podcasting Has Erupted

This is the first of the podcasts I’ve been cutting over the past few days.

It’s a lot of fun to switch gears as a broadcaster into new mediums.

Though it’s become clear to me that the fun part of doing the recordings is getting addictive versus the boring part of doing the editing.

These are going to get a bit … wild … in coming updates.

If you’re catching me here then consider linking up with me over on the YT as well.

Too Many Puppies

Eric in a Cowboy Hat

Geez, I made too many and started so many projects over the years.

Really nuts going through this blog stuff. 

Easily my biggest post is Kira’s Kingdom.

Starting doing minor podcasting with a voice recorder and discovered a nice little resource for my fellow Web creators to brush up on:

Digital Media Law Project: Fair Use

(URL: http://www.dmlp.org/legal-guide/fair-use)

Also have this always saved and ready to go now…

THIS PODCAST DOES NOT REFLECT THE VIEWS OF YOUTUBE, GOOGLE OR RESPECTIVE PARTNERSHIPS. THIS CONTENT IS USED IN THE FULL SPIRIT OF THE FAIR USE POLICIES AND PRACTICES.

 

—-

 

Follow @ Blogger:

 

http://ericlightborn.blogspot.com

 

Follow @ Twitter:

 

https://twitter.com/EricLightborn

It’s Not Just Beck That Is Losing The Cable Ratings War

BusinessInsider.com:

 

Fox News has the top 12 most-watched shows so far this year.

Which is perhaps not totally surprising since this marks the network’s ninth straight year as the number one channel in cable.

That is not to say it’s all rainbows and unicorns. (Or cupcakes and caliphates.) All of Fox’s top shows posted double digit losses year over year.

Glenn Beck suffered the biggest drop, losing 30% of his audience compared to the first quarter last year. But he wasn’t alone. Top ranking O’Reilly lost 14% of his audience, Sean Hannity, up a spot from 2010, lost 19%, and Bret Baier, who pushed Beck out of the top three, lost 13%.

Greta Van Susteren, who has been bleeding viewers to Anderson Cooper this month, is down 22.86%.

All in all Fox News actually lost 21% of its primetime audience during the quarter.

Compare this to CNN which is up 28% in primetime and MSNBC which is up 9% (Rachel Maddow increased by 16.65% and Anderson Cooper by 18%) and then take into consideration all the breaking news there’s been since Christmas, and one might begin to draw the conclusion that people are beginning to turn elsewhere for news news coverage.

Another explanation, of course, is that this time period last year was dominated by the health care debate and for much of that period Fox operated as an extension of the opposition. Now that the nation’s focus is international it’s harder to figure out an angle where Obama is bad and … nuclear meltdowns and Qadaffi are good.

*All numbers from Neilsen.

Glenn Beck & The Right-Wing Media

(WATCH VIDEO: Crooks & Liars “Glenn Beck ‘You’re Going To Have To Shoot Them'”)

I see Glenn Beck as actually dangerous, and not just abrasive and dishonest like other right-wing media pundits.

I first became mildly aware of Beck when he was scathing the Bush White House, but back then he never ever called himself “conservative” and only called himself “libertarian.” Today he has fashioned himself a New Media Joe McCarthy and wants to teach the children of America a distorted and fictitious version of U.S. History.

What has actually risen to the level of public danger is centered on the TV show aspect of what he has done with his career. If anyone doesn’t already know he has mocked setting people on fire, shown a shaky rape video for no reason beyond fear mongering and to cap it all off he called a sitting president a racist on live TV.

Because television gives the illusion of credibility putting the character (I believe he is playing everyone, he said so in an interview around when he got all freaky) of Glenn Beck out there has sent horrible and extremely dangerous repercussions into the nation that can never be taken back.

Without pulling out a pack of URLs it’s quicker to just say that historically the U.S. has kind of “self-policed” this kind of extremism and incitement to violence disguised as free speech when it has happened before and always the figure that resembles Glenn Beck of today had a fall from grace. Usually getting fired. The best recent example is “Dr.” Laura getting the axe: she went into something from a KKK rally and that was the “the line.”

It sounds too simple, I know, but the most serious offender here is News Corp and Fox News.

Glenn Beck is only especially dangerous because his bosses won’t fire him no matter what “line” he crosses. If you minus Rupert Murdoch and the Koch Brothers from this situation then Beck would have been canned for being disrespectful to a sitting president or too libel for his “here’s some violence, but don’t do violence” message he delivers regularly. Since this heartless media empire keeps him alive the kind of normal “quality controls” are not coming into play.

In the wake of the Tucson shooting, another act of domestic terrorism that the mainstream media refuses to label as such, and the moving speech delivered by President Obama there is a strong need to assess ourselves in our words and also more deeply to our mind state. This cannot, however, negate the need for people to speak their opinions about the current state of the nation.

America is on a road of a long, slow decline into moral ambiguity and a complete lack of ethics, and Glenn Beck combined with Fox News and the tea party is the first step toward this destruction of all that is good and decent in America. I don’t say these things to get a rise out of anyone or to single out Glenn Beck, but rather only because I see these words as the simple truth.

If Beck and those similar to him would only stop the incitement to violence, racism and bigotry then I would never raise issue with them beyond to merely disagree. Since this next evolution of political dialogue looks more like McCarthyism and Nazism combined I simply refuse to call it anything else.

To Every Age A Fear-Monger Is Born

 

There is always a figure that will stand up for evil, lies, Antisemitism and violence. There is never any lack of men and women who will sell their souls for attention, power, fame and money.

What is unacceptable is how so many in America accept the insane lies and Nazi propaganda tactics at face value when they come from Glenn Beck or other figures on the right.

Some people are simply sick. They have no care for truth and love only the sound of their name being spoken even if it be in disgust. Seeing this as fact I rarely comment on the national disgrace of broadcasting who goes by the name Glenn Beck. Some men are so divorced from American Values and love for the truth that all they create is no better than feces and all that one could comment on about them the same.

Nevertheless, this is the second time Glenn Beck has run afoul of the ADL and I wonder to myself just how many Nazi tactics this Fox News broadcaster has to use against the left before people everywhere can start calling him a racist, anti-Semite, Nazi-sympathizer. Because that’s exactly what he and all his fans are, so let’s cut the bullshit.

NYDaily: ‘Conservative Shock Jock Convicted, Death Threats’

NYDailyNews.com:

A Brooklyn jury took less than two hours Friday to convict right-wing loudmouth Harold (Hal) Turner of threatening to kill three Chicago judges.

Turner’s mom and teenage son gasped and sobbed as the jury found the Internet shock jock guilty of a single charge of threatening to murder the judges – a charge that carries up to 10 years in prison.

An ashen-faced Turner stripped off his tie and belt and handed his wallet to a clerk before he was led out of the courtroom in downtown Brooklyn.

“I love you, dad,” his son, Michael Turner, 16, said after the verdict was read. Relatives of Turner angrily denounced the lightning-quick verdict, which came on the fourth day of his second retrial. Two previous trials ended in mistrials after jurors were unable to agree on a verdict.

“Let me be the first to say this plainly: these judges deserve to be killed,” Turner posted on his website in June 2009.

Turner, 48, of North Bergen, N.J., also posted the judges’ phone numbers and office addresses, federal prosecutor Diane MacArthur told the jury.

Glenn Beck Deserves Zero Credit For Not Rebuking Sherrod

Some have made the point that because Glenn Beck did not join in on the most recent right-wing witch hunt designed to stir up racism that this somehow means he should be given credit.

I find this sentiment disgusting, to say the least.

This is the same man who calls the President of the United States a “racist” and fails utterly to define what exactly he meant by the “white culture” that Obama apparently hates. This is the same man who touted daily the previous witch hunt founded in racism, which came in part from the very same source of the Sherrod witch hunt.

Cutting Glenn Beck slack just because he didn’t join in this most recent attempt to destroy American democracy is like giving praise to a serial rapist for letting one of his victims go in a moment of humanity after destroying the lives of countless women prior to that.

This man leads the charge of vile hatred for progressives, spreads thinly veiled racism on the mainstream media, gleefully destroys the lives of poor black families helped by ACORN and atop all that cannot answer simple questions about what exactly he was trying to communicate when he publically defamed the sitting president.

Imagine, if you would, that a black cable / radio broadcaster was expressing the opinion that George W. Bush was a racist after the Katrina disaster. Would we all sit around and debate the merits of this point of view? Would we bring in Katie Couric to interview this person and try to suss out what they were saying in more specific terms? Or would we find it so disgusting as a nation that this person would be thrown off all widely accessed media sources?

It’s the last one, if you hadn’t figured that out on your own. If Americans had even one shred of common decency the likes of Glenn Beck would have been thrown off the air and become persona non grata to all except the most fringe media outlets after making such a vapid claim.

Instead some want to give him praise for not joining in what is only the most recent installment of anti-black sentiment brought forward by immoral conservatives and their corrupt media machine. Instead he leads his unpatriotic teabaggers on another rally designed to stir up hatred and racial animosity.

Some people are evil, there is no other word for it. Beck is such a person.

The day I bend knee to evil is the day I stop being a human being.

Repost: Fox “Not-a-news-agency” News is Banned From White House Porch

Obama on FOX-thumb-340x229(Chicago Tribune: Swamp Politics)

Is it a good idea to single out just one outlet in the manner that The Obama White House recently has in the case of removing Fox Broadcasting from the press pool?


At first, I was in favor of the move to ignore the Fox Broadcasting Company by Barack Obama.

His efforts to clear his name on the website “Fight The Smears” stem almost entirely from Fox. He has every right to defend himself from these smear-merchants and radical right-wing propagandist supporters.

The right-wing lobby called “Fox News” (as in the cable pseudo-news) and “Fox News Talk” (as in the radio pseudo-news) is still “not a news organization” in my opinion. But I think this label should include everyone from Comedy Central to HLN to CNN to MSNBC, everyone except PBS and C-SPAN.

It’s been televised tabloidism in place of televised journalism for far too long. In my view.

Any White House that would send a clear signal that The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, Countdown, The O’Reilly Factor, and The Glenn Beck Show are all the same thing would be nothing but a benefit in this age of media hate & mass misinformation.

These programs are not news, they are purely entertainment television.

Each of these programs has an agenda, as does the network behind each.

There is nothing wrong with doing agenized news. But it is dishonest and unethical to claim objectivity if you are playing toward a specific political wing, or any specific agenda. This is the greatest offense of the so-called Fair & Balanced Fox Broadcasting. As a network they cater to right-wing political agendas and refuse to declare themselves as a format that promotes conservative ideology. In that case I see it as a function of false advertising on behalf of the network.

All these programs, it‘s important to point out, are television propaganda toward that agenda. Which might be only the agenda to make you laugh.

The broadcasting produced by this political lobby / news agency / entertainment format in only the viewing of it is not dangerous. It is taking these kinds of broadcasts as serious news formats that is problematic in a democratic society.

The informed viewing of propaganda is merely educational. However, to those who refuse to see the difference between opinions and facts the viewing of the propaganda of reckless liars, there is a dangerous situation produced.

Mine is a somewhat complex argument in regards to “The News Wars” between The Obama White House and Fox Broadcasting Company:

It is a good move that Obama is standing up to bad journalism mixed with bad business practices, but a bad move that he singled out Fox News alone when all the news agencies screw something up.

Fox News is just the biggest offender of the smears.

I believe radio and satellite should remain untouched by sweeping regulations, but televised broadcasting of race baiting and McCarthyism is just too much tabloidism for me to handle.

This sensationalist reporting on politics that has been going almost entirely due to Fox News is not exclusive to them, so I think it would be wise to pick out a few other agencies, perhaps CLEARCHANNEL and Comedy Central, to also declare as non-news formats.

It is clear to me when a news group is run by an agenda, thus becoming more like a political lobby than a news group, but it is not clear to everyone.

A President who stands for educating the public should seek to educate people on what exactly “bias” is, and hopefully shed some light on the issue.

The specific near-criminal acts of failure to disclose vital information of a story committed by Fox News should be spoken of plainly and openly if not handled more severely. This tactic of isolation is my only qualm with Obama’s approach to dealing with fake news.

If it is the desire of this White House to tackle the specific crimes against society that Fox has committed, then I would hope the case was made in specifics.

It is my personal view that a news group, of any sort, can lose it’s status as “press” if they fail to uphold the journalistic truth as a matter of course.

I believe Obama did not go far enough to fight unethical journalism and false reporting.

But I certainly agree with the point that Fox has become something other than a news agency when they promote bad journalism that is not related to their “opinion-makers.”

America The Hateful (Cyber-Harassment)

I called in to a radio show tonight to express my disgust for the current state of political debate in America today.

Alan Colmes of Fox News Talk has this late night / evening political talk show that has some of the lightest call screening in all of the talk medium, let alone that he is working under Fox. Many doubt it but he is a liberal, I would think of him as the kind of liberal who shops at only Wal-Mart. We might call him the “token liberal” of the opinion-media produced under the Fox mantle.

Here is my fan-script / transcript:

ERIC IN SANTA CRUZ: I want to talk about hate. I think there is a lot of hate out there, and I’m part of it on the left.

COLMES: You’re part of it?

ERIC IN SANTA CRUZ: Well, I’m part of it in that I get upset. I hear you doing it on the [phone] lines too. People will say something and you come back at them. And I just wanted to say that it’s wrong. No matter who does, whether it’s me or whatever, it’s wrong. We hate got to hating each other all the time. You can think whatever you want. I can even call someone a “racist,” or whatever, but you got to find a way to not hate people as individuals and just have your point of view.  It’s all over the internet, it’s going on the [Alan.com] chat room right now, it’s all over talk radio right now…. You start making it about people, and not about opinions; that’s when people get upset and we don’t know what to do. That’s when things get out of hand, people start talking about coming over to your house … You were right about the Tea Party, I think there’s racists — racism — in it, but …

COLMES: Well you don’t fight fire with fire, you fight fire with water.

ERIC IN SANTA CRUZ:

COLMES:

I misstated myself when I said “I can even call someone a racist.” I meant to say: “I can even call someone out on what I feel is racism without attacking person by focusing on the statement instead of the person.” (I also had a runny nose and forgot to blow it so I was making annoying snorting noises while on the air, to be fair here they put me on right away and I was shocked that I was on hold for perhaps less than five minutes. I thought I had a little more time than that…)

Also I could have been more clear that the times when he “hates” is rare, and I only mentioned it because it is the same kind of goading harassment and invective language that I see everywhere. Compared to everyone else on the radio-side of Fox he is a big huggable teddy bear with a pack of ravenous lions, but like anyone who deals with verbal harassment sometimes niceties fail and you end up sounding just like them. I am ten thousand times more guilty of this crime than he, but I’ve heard the sounding cry of the masses and it is hate that rules this tempest waging around us.

Forgetting to focus on the statement and not the speaker is the rule I have forgotten more than once now while online and have been rightly deleted / banned from websites as a result.

Hate begets hate. Violence begets violence.

I am ashamed, but only in my expression and not in my passion.

Cyber-harassment is wrong, and it’s currently the favorite past time of lazy teabaggers who have yet to call in death threats or destroy property of health care reform advocates.

MTV-AP Digital Abuse Study:

Objectives/Background
As part of its multi-year public affairs campaign to address the emerging issue of teen digital abuse,
MTV partnered with the AP on a study that provides an in depth look at the prevalence of digital abuse
among young people today. This research was designed to quantify how young people are affected by
and respond to issues like sexting, digital harassment and digital dating abuse.

Why The Health Care Debate Is So Contentious

Even prior to the abortion issue being pointlessly dragged into the debate over health care reform the issue has been one of the most contentious debates I have ever seen in politics.

The question quickly becomes: Why?

I feel I have an answer, and it mirrors the matter of the abortion debate as well.

It is simple:

Both sides view the other as disingenuous and downright evil.

From the perspective of the anti-reformists all support for this bill is a disguised effort to destroy capitalism and / or expand the federal government to an unreasonable size.

From the perspective of the pro-reformists all rejection of this bill is a disguised effort to spread hatred, intolerance, racism and violence under the banner of a “tea party” and / or purely strategic politics of conservatives seeking to undermine all bills proposed under President Obama.

(There is, of course, a great deal more complexity at play here in both positions.)

In a situation where both groups view the other as “liars” there is no debate to be had. No discussion that will bare fruits. None.

The fear and lies surrounding this health bill entirely native to the rightwing has no bartering point from which to start from. There is no common ground to find with a person who lies about the record and rejects all evidence that does not compliment their existing preconceptions.

Throughout this year long national debate I have strived to pull the emotions out and put the facts in their place, but such actions only serve a purpose when there remains holdouts on both sides. In the course of this I have seen new levels of hostility directed at me personally more so then ever before in my experience.

I have never “unfriended” and “blocked” so many people in my entire ten-plus years on the Internet.

The incitement toward violence, the death threats, the partisan hate; all existed prior to the matter becoming national in the death threats against Democrats post-HCR. All of this existed in the venom directed at health reform advocates on a daily basis from individuals of a very low moral fiber and very poor understanding of democracy.

In matters discussing life and death, I’d rather not see so many and myself give in to fear; but it truly doesn’t surprise me in the least to see this country explode in mindless paranoia. Big changes equates to big fears, bad economy equates to paranoia on the rise.

In the solid matter of facts, this health bill is a net-positive for America.

But this issue will not lose any of it’s contentious nature no matter how many facts are interjected in the mass spreading of paranoid myths. For too many Americans it is simply easier to believe the worst, and the biased conservative media is sure to provide them endless piles of red meat.

Coffee Party USA Continues To Percolate Nicely

Founded by Annabel Park, the Coffee Party Movement (CPM), is put simply a “democracy advocacy group.” The movement began with something we all are likely familiar with: the Facebook Status Update.
The CPM founded around these simple principles:

The slogan is “Wake Up and Stand Up.” The mission statement declares that the federal government is “not the enemy of the people, but the expression of our collective will, and that we must participate in the democratic process in order to address the challenges we face as Americans.”

When I first joined the Facebook Fan-page named “Join the Coffee Party Movement” roughly at the time of my first post the total number of users who “Fanned” the page was roughly 7,000. At last check, it is well above 70,000!
Take a look at this map, the closet chapter to me is the San Francisco Chapter of the CPM so I have joined that user group on the Official Webpage:
The Facebook Comment threads are back-logging with too many replies, the two domains at .org and .com are having trouble handling server traffic at peak hours so be patient if it’s not appearing if you attempt to link through.
Civil discussion, rational dialogue, non-hostile environments for ideas and opinions to be heard. The Coffee Party USA has come to bring civility to the U.S. and one of the strongest lessons that I must learn from these people is exactly that. Perhaps we all could do with a good lesson in civility here on the internet, I know for certain that I do.
They insist, and I agree it a wise point to make, that the movement is not the “Anti Tea Party” but the “alternative to” the Tea Party.
Talking with these activists makes me calm down, and want to do what they are doing: leading by example.
I’m seeing the only people serving any rational version of civic brew out of the choices of Coffee and Tea is without a doubt the Coffee!
The predictable Tea Party backlash of attempting reframe the debate by attacking the credibility of Annabel Park, and the more recent mantra of calling the CPM a “sham” over talk radio airwaves is only more proof that what Al Alborn spoke of in regards to the Tea Party was altogether true.
I too believe the Tea Party Movement is founded around silencing debate and dividing people rather than bringing them together.
I support the Coffee Party USA with all my heart, and the revival of truth & reason shall not be denied!