Monday, November 13, 2006
Stay the Course
I don't know where this came from. I wrote it October 28th and must have meant to post it but never did.
"Stay the Course"
Part of the success of talk radio and cable news programs is their ability to get away time and again with absolute lies with virtually no accountability. Their echo chamber gobbledegook is so belligerent, emotion-laden and void of critique that even the most blatantly false statements are forgotten in the dissonant belch of disingenuous horse-shit faster than Rush Limbaugh's latest one night stand in the Dominican Republic. They say exactly what they want to believe. They say it loud and often, and people want to believe it so much that they start ignoring reality to do it.
It is an effective strategy. For instance, in Sean Hannity's world, the war on terror is a huge success, we freed the Iraqi people, and the economy is better than it has ever been despite the fact that Bush inherited a recession from Clinton. He can say it over and over again. It's his own little world, how dare any biased Darwin believing liberals argue. Since most people are far too busy to learn anything complicated, the one's who live in the echo chamber will hear nothing but the echoes they love so much without all that nasty and confusing counterargument.
What sheer evil it is to be so enthusiastically deceptive.
Last night I saw David Letterman hand Oreilly his ass on a platter. Oreilly was saying something about how simple the Iraq issue was, and Letterman said "it's not simple for me because I'm a thoughtful person". Fast food news (virtually entirely right wing conservative by nature) achieves success by reducing extremely complex issues down to emotional faith based either-ors. It's a substitute brain for those without the energy or capacity to reason (or those who have faith and don't need to reason).
Strangely enough, the only news outlets brave enough to call the cowardly evil bullshitters on their deceptions are comedy shows. Despite the innumerable bald faced lies of Limbaugh, Hannity and Oreilly, you would never see some sort of NBC expose segment describing them in detail and taking them to task for their counterfeit form of "effortless journalism". That would be decried as "biased liberal media" no matter how obviously true the expose was. It turns out that the fake Christianist authoritarians are entitled to their outright lies as much as the next person. Opinions must be balanced, even if some of them are completely and demonstrably counterfactual.
But the comedy shows do the service that the real news is scared to do, thus their success.This is one instance which is amazing, sad and breathtakingly funny.