Shame and the media

3 11 2009

Tonight, the IUPUI Freethinkers had their weekly meeting. The topic this week was the media. The ultimate consensus was that the media has developed some serious, deep-seated issues.

Extremism sells and most news outlets are corporate entities or owned by corporate entities. This is the unfortunate truth. Unfortunately, extremism does not make for good reporting. It does not serve the American people well. Until we start demanding en masse decent, in-depth reporting, we simply will not get it from the corporate interests that own our media.

Fox News and MSNBC both engage in the presentation of polar extremes as rational, mainstream methods of political thought. The truth is, they are not even close. They are political extremes that do not inform the populace or encourage civil discourse. They are simply talking heads. They just make noise.

Since ideologues in the media come down on issues so cleanly and predictably, however, politicians can make them part of their strategies. Politicians, in particularly fierce races like last fall’s Presidential race, can fine tune their arguments to divide and polarize the American public, to create dichotomy where none need exist.

It is necessary that we as a nation stand up and announce that we have the right to clear, concise and in-depth news reporting. We deserve to hear the whole story without major facts and events being cherry-picked to suit some egotist’s or capitalist’s agenda. We need to know what is going on out there. We cannot just trust that the people with the loudest voices will let us know what is really going on.

The Daily Show – “For Fox Sake”

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