They’re Not Cleaning It Up, They’re Covering It Up

Kindra Arnesen is not the only one appalled at this sham of a clean-up effort and the corporate whitewash media-blackout over the level of sheer disaster currently ravaging America at the hands of BP and Transocean.

Arnesen does not even touch on the toxic and hazardous dispersant (Corexit) that does nothing but add a poison that makes the oil harder to clean-up (and videotape / photograph) into the mix of all the other health hazards and environmental hazards already in play.

ProPublica.org:

The two types of dispersants BP is spraying in the Gulf of Mexico are banned for use on oil spills in the U.K.

As EPA-approved products, BP has been using them in greater quantities than dispersants have ever been used in the history of U.S. oil spills.

Reuters.com:

Oil-dispersing chemicals used to clean up the vast BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico carry their own environmental risks, making a toxic soup that could endanger marine creatures even as it keeps the slick from reaching the vulnerable coast, wildlife watchdogs say.

The use of dispersants could be a trade-off between potential short-term harm to offshore wildlife and possible long-term damage to coastal wildlife habitat if the oil slick were to reach land.

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YouTube Changes Its Face On Us

This new streamlined YouTube is improved in the sense that we can see a billion & one videos lined up, but somehow it feels like they just made the whole site a video version of Twitter.

I think it’s all a big grand master plan to get everybody on Facebook in the whole universe. We will make you Facebook even if you don’t own a computer, all devices must have Facebook Apps to be worthy of creation!

Jon Stewart Castrates The Blogosphere

As is usually the case, it is left to the Comedy Central programming of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart to point out these funny aspects of our media and our society that go mainly overlooked.

From “The Blogs Must Be Crazy” segment:

It’s almost as if these headlines are freakishly out of proportion to the content contained within them.

Oh, did you Comedy Central writers notice that too?

A good headline makes all the difference, and if somebody isn’t getting castrated, eviscerated and then decapitated its just not a good headline.

I guess the real title of this post is: Lightborn Eviscerates The Blogosphere

But I have a suggestion: the “versus posts.”

Someone vs. Someone, instead of Someone metaphorically cannibalizes Someone else.

Just a thought…

LiberalViewer Tackles “Citizens United v. FEC”

LiberalViewer of YouTube attempts to set the record straight on mischaracterizations of the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling in “Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission.”

It appears based on watching this video that the ruling is greatly misunderstood by both sides and I myself am inspired to try and read the whole 180+ page Opinion of the Court.

I am in no way advocating the chilling of free speech by value of it simply coming from a corporation or union.

It is a falsehood to state that this ruling allows for “unlimited contributions to political candidates” and also a point that is not within the primary argument against this ruling, as it did not effect those existing limitations.

I believe, personally, that the argument made that this will benefit non-profit advocacy organizations over private sector special interests has some serious flaws in it, while it is not altogether untrue.

It’s true that some of the confusing regulations surrounding political advocacy have been discarded in this recent decision, but it is the structure and measure of what they have done that is so reprehensible.

Were it to be the case that a corporation had to declare their logo and “I Support This Ad” with the CEO standing there; then this decision would be far different in implications to our political process.

This logic that major multinational corporations will for some reason “not go there” with political issues is true to a certain extent but it precludes the simple truth that when seeing itself as threatened, as the insurance companies did the early days of the Health Care Debate, they will spend whatever they can as fast as they can to flood us with … media. Media like television ads.

How quickly we forget as a nation, as a people, that Sen. John Kerry was literally “slimed” out of his equal opportunity at the democratic process in a bid for president no less by what we now call “swing voting” but if you track this story out it was a bunch of frauds who demeaned their personal character in a outright smear campaign. One of them lives right here in Santa Cruz, California and just like the Bush administration itself they are taking no responsibility for this in public.

How easy it will be now for a nameless silent corporate partner to just bankroll a bunch of TV ads either pro or con for a candidate that had policies that just might ask them to give a little back after they take so much from the environment, for instance. If understand that McDonald’s is Pro-McCain, just as a random example, then many of my concerns go away. But as it stands the Sierra Club, the NRA and the example of the video clip Microsoft could all wildly flood a campaign with media while grassroots money and dedicated social advocates of any position would be overshadowed.

Also this argument that money doesn’t win elections is also partly false. Money is not enough, as the examples of Ross Perot and Mitt Romney illustrate, but the 2008 Campaign for the White House was in part decided on the dollars and cents. Of course you need the solid candidate, as the Democrats held with Obama, to seal the deal but my studies in Political Science completely disagree with the scoffing of this notion of looking at the financial impact and earnings to get the best picture.

As I stated before, I believe I may have to read this entire decision before I am totally satisfied I understand it fully.

For now, I am strongly standing with the words of President Obama in his State of the Union address calling this decision a means by which we will “open the floodgates” to foreign special interests and corporate lobbyist influence over the actual results of our elections themselves.

I feel both the SCOTUS and perhaps LiberalViewer as well have concerned themselves too much with entities that deserve very little concern or express protections of the court while neglecting to see the ramifications of said decision on the people that truly represent democracy at it’s core.

To put it plainly: this appears a “open door” policy in terms of slash-and-burn negative political ads at the end of a campaign cycle to force a candidate to lose based on hyperbole, as we have seen before in politics. Slime works, and I as I understand it the SCOTUS just ruled in favor of slime in our elections.

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UPDATE!

Russ Feingold at CounterPunch.org explains what Sam Donaldson was speaking about that I referred to as “inaccurate” in the above piece.

I was under the impression that he was saying that Soft Money limits are now gone under this ruling but in fact it he was speaking to the issue of spending directly out of the treasury without limit.

***Thanks to Paul J. Rourke for bringing this to my attention and providing the link.

LiberalViewer, October 27th 2009

LiberalViewer on YouTube has touched what I feel is a very important issue facing us today in the U.S.

 

LIBERALVIEWER: Do you agree that the bias at Fox News is quantitatively and qualitatively different from any bias at the other major media outlets?

It’s absolutely different, in every way. The truth of it all, as I see it, is that Fox News just took the model of far right-wing radio and applied it to television broadcasting.

LIBERALVIEWER: Do you think the evidence of political organizing cited by Rachel Maddow is the best evidence Fox News is different or are the combative interview style applied only to one side, the parroting of Republican talking points, and the pattern of partisan distortion of the facts I showed better evidence that Fox News is different?

 

I feel that if 14 members of the GOP truly did write Rodger Ailes hand-written letters about having Glenn Beck retract his comments about race in regards to President Obama and this was ignored for ideological or perhaps commercial interests in place of the common good of the nation by Fox CEO Rodger Ailes himself then that is the best evidence out there. But if that’s a bogus news-story then your analysis without a doubt trumps that of any found on the major networks.

I thought about it and I’m completely against this “boycott Fox” nonsense. I want them to highly reform their television-side and don’t give a hoot about the radio-waves.

If they would just have some level of integrity in the television broadcasting they produce my qualms with them would cease.

I like the “old days” as I call them when Alan Colmes was actually on TV dispelling some of the nonsense. Now he is only really on the radio.

I find it interesting that they uninterested in reviving just the concept of the “CON vs. LIB” television show in a prime-time slot. Little by little all my ability to defend what they are doing as “news” just fades away. I see it as a situation where they are just very big, they have a partial media-monopoly, so they have plenty of room to hire everyone in the world.

I view all radio as morning-zoo, madhouse, boiler-plate, funhouse ride antics. Something happens though with the make-up and the lights and the cameras of television, or at least I think that is what is really going on ‘behind the curtains’ of this issue.

Fox News is more or less playing the role of a criminal while MSNBC operates as a cop.

I would describe the whole situation as: ridiculous.

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 alone when all the news agencies screw something up.

FOX 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.

Did Glenn Beck Commit a Murder-Rape in 1990?

glenbeck199(Times photo, 2000: Fraser Hale)

Did radio and television personality Glenn Beck of Fox Broadcasting commit a murder-rape in 1990?

This blog posting exists only to try and help examine the vicious rumor that Glenn Beck raped and murdered a young girl in 1990. I don’t claim to know the truth of this matter. I only claim to know of a rumor floating around saying that Glenn Beck committed a murder-rape, and I believe that this should be discussed. So I, along with others, are going to do our part to get to the bottom of this.

Why does Glenn Beck not address these charges?

Why would Glenn Beck seek arbitration outside of the U.S. courts instead of coming forward to clear up the rumor?

I’m not saying I think he did it. I, in fact, think he is innocent of these serious criminal charges.

I’m saying that we should discuss this seriously as a nation, and a people. We should ask our friends, our boss, and our colleagues.

The Freedom of Speech must be heard over this specific matter. The voice of the people must come to be known throughout the United States on this very serious national issue we all face.

Notice: This post is a parody/satire of a different author. We all assume Glenn Beck did not rape and murder a young girl in 1990, although we also haven’t yet seen any proof that he didn’t. But we think Glenn Beck definitely uses tactics like this to spread lies and misinformation.

Read the last sentence again. That’s the point.