Saturday, January 14, 2006

As diverse as sheep in a field

It is truly head-spinning to speak to Conservatives who in the popular sphere are considered to be “law and order” while they themselves, or at least some of them, forcefully back the actions of a Preznit who claims for himself the right to interpret the law any which way he wants to. I get this information from, initially, the President’s refusal to adhere to the specifications of the FISA legislation that was written in order to specifically enable urgent wiretapping. The relevant text (from Section 1809 of FISA) reads

"A person is guilty of an offense if he intentionally— (1) engages in electronic surveillance under color of law except as authorized by statute."
I mean really. It’s just amazing. And yet I’ve spoken to several Friends Who Also Happen To Be Conservatives (Not that there’s anything wrong with that) who have falsely cited legislation passed by Clinton and Carter that authorized some wiretapping. However, this “news”, as distorted by conservatives and promoted as fact was of course the only possible defense by a desperate bunch of supporters of a bunch who really are deserving of only prosecution and disparagement.

However, it brings up the problem, again, of the conglomeration of media, one of the worst parts of President Clinton’s legacy (along with NAFTA and the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell ruling). We have a country, according to this speech by Robert F. Kennedy Jr. in which half the country gets their news from either The Company That Isn't Fair and Balanced, talk radio, and Sinclair network-all extremely partisan news organizations. When so many people are so informed by such companies, it’s no wonder that they are so misinformed and latch on to notions perpetrated by folks like Larry Elder and Dennis Prager (two conservative talk show DJs in the LA area). If you read only a few sources, you’re not going to see that you’re only exposed to the tip of the iceberg. I was talking to a good friend of mine Who Happens to Be Conservative (not that there’s anything wrong with that) and I have to be very patient and careful not to demonize him but rather to point out how all of these homogenized BS-spewing talk-show hosts are basically clones of one another. He has a particular allegiance to one to which I basically respond that there isn’t a whole lot of difference between him or another guy. Anyway, of course that claim is rejected with typically conservative bravado.

However I make the point that if there weren’t such homogenization in the media, perhaps we wouldn’t have a populace that was so in thrall to such ridiculous theories and which was a bit more critical of its leaders. That’s another contradiction of Conservatives In These Strange Times. While supposedly they don’t like government or trust it, and supposedly Monkey Boy was gonna be the "CEO President" (though his business would have been in the toilet a long time ago, stockholders would have eaten him for lunch, and he would have been possibly abandoned and ostracized from his family and consigned to a life of drugs and alcohol on the street) there have been fewer more financially reckless American leaders. Take THAT you goofy fiscal conservatives...

Government is huge right now and while Monkey Boy is selective as to which parts of government are bad (NEA-bad! CPB-bad!! EPA-bad! OSHA-bad!! Pentagon-good! Defense Dept-good!) he’s spending like it’s going out of style. It’s just amazing that Democrats haven’t seized, or taken the initiative, to present themselves as the party of fiscal responsibility or really to market themselves in a positive light as opposed to the Continuing Trainwreck that is The Party of Lincoln these days.

But again, back to the shame that media is so centralized and conglomerated these days. If this were not so, we might well have a populace a lot more savvy to the shams and scams that have been perpetrated on a populace not really all that friendly to such plans. But, well, because of that, we have decent folks like this conservative friend of mine who believes all the pap coming out of no-name talk-show hosts’ mouths and of course he passes it off as fact, as do many millions more. And it’s so much easier to blame and name call than it is to really look for solutions. Anyway, perhaps when this Abramoff scandal really erupts, we’ll see the full collaboration of Big Media and Government and the scales will fall off the eyes of guys like this friend of mine who’s a decent guy (for a Republican).


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