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Media And Your Worldview

June 7, 2012 by  

Media And Your Worldview
PHOTOS.COM
Political spin from both sides is obvious throughout news media.

There is one inherent truth about writing for a political news publication: You never truly leave your work when you leave your desk. It isn’t because you are some wide-eyed political news junkie who wants to inform every innocent soul with whom you come in contact of the day’s often ridiculous and mostly frightening events. Rather, it’s because most everyone else, knowing what you do for a living, wants to inform you of the latest news. Unfortunately, most people are terribly misinformed.

The job of scouring the vast field of news sites and blog entries on the Internet each day and of stripping them of the fluff and nonsense comes with the incredible burden of knowing that a visit to the local coffeehouse or watering hole at the end of the day might leave you frustrated. Someone will inevitably toss a “Hey, did you hear about…” and proceed to give you a slanted version of a news story. You can immediately tell which of the major news networks it came from. And you come to realize that many people allow their social and political worldview to be shaped almost entirely by the brand of news they consume.

Likely, no person consciously decides that he is willing to be entirely indoctrinated by his chosen form of news consumption in the beginning. It happens, it seems, as a matter of consequence. Perhaps a person chooses to watch news exclusively on Fox because the channel boasts conservative commentators like Bill O’ Reilly with whom he shares views, or MSNBC because of the quirky youthfulness of talking heads like Rachel Maddow. The average news consumer takes in the punditry and assumes that the “spin” stops just in time for the network to read through the latest top stories. But the spin doesn’t stop, and the networks have each poisoned the well from which they pull their “news” reports.

Politico’s Dylan Bryers nicely illustrated the polarization of news media late Tuesday night as he blogged about cable news coverage of the Wisconsin recall in his column “on Media.”

He writes:

MSNBC was blatantly rooting for Tom Barrett to defeat Gov. Scott Walker, even sending union champion Ed Schultz to cover an event with no apologies for the dog he has in the fight. (Earlier tonight, Chris Matthews even told Schultz that if he wasn’t an MSNBC host, he could be head of the AFL-CIO.) When it became clear that Barrett would lose, Schultz looked almost teary eyed. Not long after, the network’s contributors immediately began suggesting that this was, in fact, good news for Obama — who, after all, hadn’t even set foot in Wisconsin — and began attacking Mitt Romney.

Meanwhile, Fox News was blatantly rooting for Gov. Walker, and the moment it became clear that Walker might win, host Sean Hannity called it “a repudiation of big unions,” which did “everything they could do to demonize Scott Walker.” Guest Hugh Hewitt then predicted that, five months from now, Romney would follow Walker just “as Reagan followed Thatcher.” Fox’s Greta Van Susteren later hosted what amounted to a victory celebration for the Republicans.

Given this blatant partisan coverage, it was absolutely impossible to watch either network and weed out any clear understanding of the actual significance of the event, much less what effect it would actually have on the 2012 presidential election.

Bryers also pointed out that CNN’s crack political team, during all the excitement, was still showing footage of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

With that, self-proclaimed news junkies had three places to go for coverage, or lack thereof, of the Wisconsin recall: the Democratic channel, the Republican channel and the I-don’t-live-in-Wisconsin-so-who-gives-a-hoot channel.

This is not all the result of some great conspiracy. It is a simple business tactic that news outlets pushing the views of the left and those of the right have employed in order to secure a place in the information marketplace. Imagine a world in which news was reported without a slant. No longer would there be a need for several major news networks because the same story reported in the same way by several different outlets would leave the marketplace saturated and no place for advertisers to spend money.

The polarization of news media could actually be a good thing if the broader populace were more willing to accept that it exists, which shouldn’t be a hard thing to do. Fox is no longer hiding it, as illustrated by the decision of the producers of “Fox and Friends” to portray the news in a way that looked very much like an ad for the Mitt Romney campaign last week.

Here’s Romney’s ad:

 

 

Here’s Fox’s news report:

 

 

Point this out, however, and those who are fans of Fox become angry and ask why you don’t also point out the bias of liberal news outlets. But for whom must it be pointed out if we already know it exists?

Instead of liberals and conservatives continuing to deride whichever news channel offers a slant opposite theirs while happily lapping up the propaganda which suits their respective ideologies, perhaps news bias could be a good thing if everyone took notes from both sides. This, of course, would require liberals to abandon the notion that watching a few minutes of Fox instantly turns a person into misogynistic racist homophobe and conservatives to discontinue believing that even flipping past MSNBC could make one go blind.

After hearing multiple versions of the same story, anyone who wanted to discuss the news of the day would, in a perfect world, use the vast resources on the Internet to research and refine their own opinions by digging for facts themselves or reading political blogs for alternate spins. The result would surely be better than having a million carbon copies of O’Reilly arguing with a million carbon copies of Maddow in coffee shops throughout the Nation, and much better than knowing that many of them head off to the polls when elections roll around.

Sam Rolley

Staff writer Sam Rolley began a career in journalism working for a small town newspaper while seeking a B.A. in English. After learning about many of the biases present in most modern newsrooms, Rolley became determined to find a position in journalism that would allow him to combat the unsavory image that the news industry has gained. He is dedicated to seeking the truth and exposing the lies disseminated by the mainstream media at the behest of their corporate masters, special interest groups and information gatekeepers.

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  • MAP

    Once again I find myself glad that I gave up TV thirty years ago. I am often quite astonished at some of the notions I hear from people still habituated to the box. The media in the US serves very much the same function it did in the USSR: strengthen party lines and make sure that those in power retain power. In short, it is only propaganda. In those short periods when I have been forced to watch TV, like when visiting friends, I discover I have missed nothing at all. What passes for entertainment is so filthy, vulgar and depraved; it represents a culture that I would flee from, rather than embrace. Entertainment chronicles our tragic decline. Cynical? Perhaps, but at least my thoughts are, to a great degree, my own and not spoon-fed dogma.

    • Cherokee1867

      MAP: Good for you! Americans have been spoon-fed the news on the tube for too long. Editorial comments were at one time SEPARATE from the news, with disclaimers before a word of opinion was uttered. News outlets have blurred those lines to a degree that has made the news and opinions indistinguishable. Responsible journalism seems to be a thing of the past. In order to get to the real news, we must wade through all the muck, including all the “opinions”, which can come from anyone on any subject. The public’s tweets and facebook posts are actually read out loud on FOX and other news outlets as if to promote these as a part of reliable news. Although FOX is least of the evils, watch them. They too are “evolving”. America needs a RESPONSIBLE free press, to report ALL the news as the founding fathers intended. As it is, they just report the stories that promote the new agency’s personal agenda (with their spin) and spike all the stories that do not. We CAN and SHOULD hold them accountable to report the news accurately. We already have. CNN now has recently reported their average prime-time audience is now 395,000. They can’t sell a thing if there are no viewers! It seems you are not alone, MAP.

  • Karolyn

    Would that people could be so open-minded as to consider what the other side has to say. I consider myself to be an independent with a liberal bent. Prior to becoming involved with this site, I considered myself just a plain liberal. Because I was able to wade through the radical conservatism of some to pull out what I do find to be true, I have changed over the past two years. Anybody who knows me from the early postings should be able to discern that change. I think that those who are extremists on any side are missing out on a lot of knowledge. Closing one’s ears only results in ignorance. I find blatant news bias obnoxious and annoying.

    My news watching consists of local news and one half hour of world news each evening on tv. Living alone, my dogs and my TV are my primary entertainment. Don’t get in the way of my CSI or Criminal Minds viewing! :-)

    • MAP

      Karolyn, I have absolutely nothing to learn from the left. I look at things from a foundational basis: what does this doctrine rest upon? Leftist doctrine rests upon silly, unproven notions and abstract rights pulled out of thin air. My foundation rests upon the doctrines of Edmumd Burke/John Radolph/John C. Calhoun/Russel Kirk/the Bible etc. I am as adverse to abstraction as John Randolph was. I see our European history and culture as a great tradition, worthy of preservation and praise. Those who seek to dismantle and destroy it, I view as enemies. I am not a neocon, ready to compromise anything and everything for power. With principle, there can be no compromise.

      • Ken

        I’m with you on that MAP – I spent 7 years with the “Nations Capitol of Leftists” in Boston, Mass….it was a mind-blowing experience, and one I DID learn from.

        What did I learn?!

        Most of them are completely insane.

        HERE is the LEFTIST Doctrine!;

        1. Do what I say, not as I do. {“Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!, I AM THE GREAT OZ!”}

        2. Believe what your told without question.

        3. Do what your told without question.

        4. Do what I tell you without question, (it’s for your own good and I know better than you).

        5. I know what’s best, so follow me!

        6. When you begin to feel any kind of confusion and begin to question what’s happening around you refer to the above (and STOP thinking for yourself and STOP ASKING QUESTIONS!).

      • Kate8

        MAP – I’m with you, too. Before I really knew anything about politics, all my friends were liberal and I considered myself liberal, too, without knowing what that actually meant. Living in CA, a bastion of liberalism, and coming from a family of conservative democrats and some republicans, I found the “tolerant” world view refreshing and liberating. But that was many years ago…

        Since aware people caught on to the true agenda behind the “love for all” vaneer of liberalism, many of us woke up. My family is nearly all republican now, and some of us have moved on to being more conservative libertarian. The liberal/progressive movement seems great until you learn who is behind it and what the agenda has always been…to nudge us toward moral decay and corruption, dependency and enslavement, and the death of all goodness, self-reliance and freedom America was envisioned to be.

        What people like Karolyn call “radical right” and “extremist” are common sense and accountability to some of us. Our “radical” views are only radical if you believe that government should control everything and that we should have no personal sovereignty (oops. There’s one of those flag words).

        Extremism is in the heart of the beholder. I have seen little on these threads, coming from the right-leaning, that I would consider radical or extreme. That leftists consider extremism rampant here is a big clue… In my view, the only real radicalism is on the Left.

        It seems to me that we conservatives just want to live our lives without BigBro breathing down our necks, and it’s gone way past that point. If wanting to have restoration to our framer’s Constitutional vision and return to (extremely and severely) limited government is extremism, then I plead guilty.

        It is the Left which has gone zealot in its charge to enslave Americans and force on us extreme ideology and dogma. It’s just satanic dogma, a worship of collectivism and death. The right has remained busy working to provide for families, for the most part, and has only recently stood up to say ENOUGH. The Left can’t stand coming up against resistance from the heretofore silent Right.

        Being that we’re in the 11th hour, it’s about time.

      • Scott29223

        Ah, but a LIBERAL is not necessarily a LEFTIST! That is where the crying over liberals and liberalism goes all wrong. Liberal really means some one with a “classical education” in the same sense and ways that our forefathers had, the Age of Reason, John Locke, Thomas Paine, and all those great writers of the Reformation & Reniassence of Europe, PLUS those great men of the Roman and Greek ages! THAT is what LIBERAL is, NOT LEFTIST…….!!!!!!!

      • MAP

        Well said Kate8. There is surely nothing radical about wanting to be left alone and being content with things as they’ve always been. Those that want to change and destroy are the radical elements. In my life, I’ve seen many things change – all for the worst. But no matter how degraded and degenerate we become the delusional and radical extermists are never satisfied. They must be always pulling us lower, alway trying to change and destroy everything..When and where does it end? Since no change ever measures up to their expectations, they feel they must change and destroy even more. Sometimes I don’t even recognize the country in which I live. This is cetainly not the country I grew up in. I look fondly back on the days when entainment was Roy Rogers and Andy Griffith. When their was wholesomeness instead of depravity. When you could believe what you want and feel what you want without fear of the strong arm of tyranny. I would certainly like to see the country I grew up in return.

      • Kate8

        MAP – Agreed. The really scary part is that the Left thinks they are moving us forward, toward being more tolerant and humanistic. Nice sounding words, but with double-edged meanings. Their agendas are always cloaked in “compassion” and “inclusiveness”, but are the proverbial wolves in sheep’s clothing.

        Scott, words mean what they are commonly understood to mean. Of course the word “liberal” means what you say, but the Left has hijacked it along with many more, such as “gay” (I always thought that meant care-free), “sustainable” (there is no such thing. All physical things are temporal and change – you just move on to other things), “smart” stuff (which only give we dummies control over our lives)…, etc. Think how “bad” now means “good” and how the language has been twisted and colloquialized.

        So, now that the Left has ruined the connotations of “liberal”, they’ve adopted “progressive”. Well, gee, that sounds nice, doesn’t it? But history (not revisionist) tells us that what they are doing has been attempted over and over again, and has ended very badly for everyone. So, we are not “progressing” at all, but regressing, and decaying…

        Having quibbles about semantics is a waste of time, don’t you think?

      • Kate8

        Oops – re: smart stuff. Should have said is a way we dummies give the PTB control over our lives.

      • http://gravatar.com/bychoosing Jay

        Scott29223, you are correct; thank you for the clarification. I think that what most posters here mean by liberal is; progressive socialist.

    • eddie47d

      Every single thing that we watch or read is biased towards one side or the other No exceptions! If you read a Conservative news article or a Liberal news article you will mostly accept that opinion as fact. So Sam Rolley is quite correct but that is also human nature in accepting or rejecting what is put in front of you.

    • Ken

      Nice to hear Karolyn – it’s been said that dripping water over many years can wear a hole through stone!

      All kidding aside, if you gave up your CSI for a few weeks you could really make some progress.

      • Steve E

        Ken, to add some other liberal favorites:
        7. If you disagree, you are a racist.
        8. All the problems we have now is because it’s Bush’s fault.

      • Kate8

        Steve E – That’s ’cause it’s all they’ve got.

        Isn’t it great that it’s not working anymore.

      • Ken

        @Kate8 – your my kinda woman….great to have you here.

    • just me

      Hey there lady, I’m another single, but with three cats, and no TV. But I get CSI, NCIS, and the rest right here, on the net. CBS, NBC, and hulu. All free, but you can subscribe to hulu for more choice. Anyway, I’m trying to make the point that you can get some great news on the net. I actually prefer it, as it’s quicker. And honestly, you’d be amazed at what you’re missing out on.

      • Steve E

        I always tell people that the news on TV is just for idiots. You will always find more news on the internet. For those of you that have not caught on yet. The internet is where you get real news. Remember the Drudge Report? That is where the Monica Lewinski scandal broke out. The TV news had the information but did not release it until after it broke out on the internet by way of the Drudge Report. I see news all the time on the internet that I don’t see on TV or newspapers. Sometimes I may see some of the things on the TV and newspapers that was broadcast on the internet two weeks before,

    • Cherokee1867

      There are alternatives to the news on TV outlets.

      • Geronimo

        Good Job, I Have Spoken,

  • roger gunderson

    People with lower I.Qs won’t be able to seperate the wheat from the chaff.

    • Karolyn

      Many people with lower IQs don’t even care about the news, but you do have a point.

    • Ken

      It’s not necessarily so that the people can’t think…..they’re just TOO LAZY to!

      As someone posted yesterday, ignorance should be a sin!

      • JON

        Ken, they may be lazy for a time and then change their behavior. You however, will remain an a$$.

      • Steve E

        Some people can’t learn because, yes, some are lazy, but sometimes they can’t learn because of Normalcy Bias which interferes with their thinking. But that is something only they themselves can fix.

      • http://gravatar.com/bychoosing Jay

        You are correct, Ken. Most people are too lazy, as well as, too trusting. You could also add, indoctrinated!

    • http://Aol CommonSense4America

      But,,Buy,,What about Snooki ? LOL

  • Sirian

    The MSM, all sides involved, is worthless insofar as having truthful reports of the news presented. Political bias as well as pronounce ideological influence has become so common place that it does make it a waste of time. You may get a pinch of the truth here, or a smidgen there but never the whole truth. Journalism is a thing of the past – it has become a main media center of spin doctors galore.

  • cawmun cents

    It’s a case of knowing or not knowing,
    Seeing or not seeing.
    Hearing or wait until you have rotted behind bars till the hearing comes up.
    The whole media thing is an infomercial for a school of thought.
    The school of thought is an infomercial for whatever new and improved version of things, that never work the way you’d think they would.
    Redundancy is rampant,along with complacency.
    There is no need to form your own opinion on a matter,if some talking points memo has already done that for you.Listening and nodding,or shaking your head,is much simpler on the old cranial capacitors.Some folks get an annurism trying to think more than they have had to from watching the idiotbox,so they just wont listen to anything but factory made lies.
    What is the”Easy Way Out”for 500 Alex?
    If you do no more research than the talking heads on any given subject,you come up with bupkiss.Many of these”experts”,and”researchers”,either have their own agenda,or are bias in one way or another which obviously skews their viewpoint.This comes oddly enough from having to find what the Granters of Fundage,want you to find.Otherwise go pound sand and see now much fundage you can achieve.
    I am certain that this is not a new phenomenon.
    It was likely the same way in ancient times without the convienience store,drive-thru mentality of today.
    I’ll take”Ad Ridiculum”for 1000 Alex.
    What are acceptable parameters?
    The acceptable parameters for the getting and loosely leaving out of information,has become the condition of todays informational age.Some facts are deemed necessary and others are convieniently swept aside in an effort to bring quality information.
    An eisegiesis of any given subject is them performed on a mental scale to provide fact to the listener or watcher.Mean while the truth lies somewhere out there languishing on a plane of thought heretofore unmentioned.So the arrival of the facts have grown a necessary departure of truth,to compensate for the lack of time required to present the facts as they are factually known.(Yes….I find myself scratching my head over that last statement also….)To fully understand the way schools of thought are presented,it would help if you have been on both sides of an issue,and have a good understanding of the conditions.
    I have been a liberal,I have been a conservative,therefore I have a unique way of viewing the two schools of thought.
    I have been a heathen,(some would say that I still am)
    I have been a Christian,so I know the differing schools of thought that are extant in these areas of cogitation.
    I have worked union and non-union.
    I have stood on the fence so I could leap over to where I wanted to go.
    I have a college education(my major was marketing)
    I have street cred as well.
    I have loved the environment,and contributed to its demise.
    I understand the philosophies of many kinds which cause divisions among the great educators,such as creationism vs.evolution.
    I have been viewing the other side form their perspective before.
    I have read Aristotle and Marcus Aurelius,as well as Sun Tzu,and Miyamoto.
    I aquainted myself with Siddhartha Gautma,and Confucious,and know Solomon and Christ.
    The thing that is unspoken here is that the schools of thought are taught for a reason.
    To promote a methodology of a sort,
    “We hold these truth’s to be self evident.”
    That is the antithesis of finding fact in a drive thru,netblog,establishmentatrian society.
    That is thinking outside of the box you have been provided.
    When truth’s become facts and you have to do reasearch as an expert to find them,the whole self evident thing goes right by you.
    You missed the truth,because you were searching for facts.
    Facts are provided by those who deal with a school of thought.
    Unless you go to school on a regular basis,that way of thought never leads to self evidence.

    Cheers!
    -CC,

  • Sanders

    I watch and listen to several news outlets each and every day in order to be able to point out to anyone who will listen the liberal bias in most of the national news outlets. I didn’t realize just how bad it really is until about a year into the Iraq invasion.

    Without doing this one tends to develop tunnel vision and can no longer tell the lies from the the truth.

  • http://justaskinjustsayin.patriotactionnetwork.com RME KRNL

    While this article’s author may make a fair point about the difference between Fox and MSNBC’s perspectives, what he ignores is the huge differential in viewership, with Fox consistently overshadowing all contenders, especially MSNBC.

  • TIME

    Just a few things to think about, “WORDS,” what they really mean is the root of all understanding, thats called “TRUTH”.

    Lets take one example so all of you can review and think about the very root of the meanings of the words.
    All of you have at some point in TIME been told the words of the Christ, this one is used as a CONTROL GRID – format, oddly if one has no knoledge of what the meaning was way back then – then we have a real problem that opens the door to a total melt down to the lazy mass’s who have no drive to learn nor understand.

    The Christ said turn the other cheek when struck.
    So most people take that to mean that you should be a pacifist, right?
    To submit to other men’s wish’s. – Thus a lock in within a the control grid.

    But; if you have a working understanding of the TIME, then you know that the Roman’s found anyone not being a ROMAN, not worthy of being punished with the RIGHT hand!
    Thus they used only the LEFT hand, so to TURN the Other CHEEK is not a form of passive behavior it’s in fact a form of agression.

    WOW, who knew, well that would be anyone who again has a strong understanding of the TIME period, thus the very words are distorted over TIME.

    We now are set within a “CONTROL GRID” that is not unlike the period of the ROMANS.

    All media no matter what, be it NBC, CBS, FOX, ABC, etc ALL – get the ROOT intel from the same 100% Totaly controled GRID.
    Note where all news comes from; AP, UP, UPI, REUTERS, Bloomberg, Forbes, etc…
    Who owns them all? Oddly some have the same owners, and the few not within that GRID, have the very same agenda, so how can you ever have any intel thats not within the noted CONTROL GRID?

    The simple answer based on “Occam’s Razor” is YOU CAN’T.

    So what do you have left? READ between the lines, find the single grain of TRUTH, and then learn the words used so that you better understand what the end result they are looking for really is. How simple is that?

    Peace and Love

    • Steve E

      I’m glad you brought up the thing about turning the other cheek. I never conformed to that idea and I never will. So that makes me feel better now.

    • Kate8

      Excellent, TIME!

      There have many many misperceptions in Christ’s teachings, and I have also wondered about that one. Thanks for the info about the Romans.

      I love the way we help “edify” one another. Thanks so much.

      Godspeed.

      • TIME

        Dear Kate,

        It’s all a learning curb thing, – after a lot of study into the “TWO” base camps, the Cult of the Moon, the Cult of the Sun / Son one is left with more questions than answers due to the TIME span from 40,000 years ago to Now.
        Be all that as it may be its a real mind expander as everything that happens today is grounded in that very long past era.

        As I have said many times an open mind is not unlike a parachute,BUT – saddly the right / left thing seems to have set its place in most folks minds.
        Thus – As far as the mass media its nearly as good as a bath in five day old pig crap,BTW – that also follows as far as the education system that the whole world follows.
        The only education one could ever hope to acquire is from a Jesuit they make you present from both sides of any argument, thus you learn how to spot the TRUTH.

        Peace and Love

    • Nadzieja Batki

      The right hand was normally the sword/javolin /spear hand and no Roman soldier could afford to damage his hand as he would be disqualified from serving.

  • Jim K

    Years ago my boss’ boss saw that I read two different newspapers each day. Later that day he brought me his copy of the Wall Street Journal and told me that he would like mr to read it everyday. Being an old newsaholic, and a previous newspaper employee, I added it to my daily reading list. I think his idea was for me to read only the WSJ; but, I liked to see the different slants on the news that each “rag” had. don’t get me wrong, I really liked being paid to read the paper. This might be a strange assignment for an industrial hygienist; but, I wasn’t about to complain. He was an old FBI section chief and, actually, a real credit to his profession. He even let me speak at public gatherings with the only condition that I did my homework and my opinions were based on science, not speculation. I think he actually liked the idea that I used information and logic. I did well at that job until a contractor lured me away with loads of money.

    I later found out that he was a rare individual, that most people formulate their ideas on information from their peers and whatever media group they tune in to. Unfortunately, many , I feel, just either don’t care about the validity of the news covered or simply are too lazy to put any effort in finding out the truth. The sad part is that many of these people feel that they are truely informed and knowledgeable about the issues. And, they vote.

    Perhaps, I’m a cynic or just fed up with dealing with idiots on a daily basis, but, it makes me want to throw my hands in the air and run away when I hear some quasi-informed person repeating the news of the day opinion from one of the talking heads. It was truly sad to see Chris Matthews do so poorly on Jeopardy. He really needed his ear bud speaker and a team of researchers on the other end. (At my house we try to call out the correct answer before the contestants.)

    Back when I had a large satellite dish I would even watch the live news feeds. You get a better perspective on the political nature of the various networks when you can actually observe the “spin” that they place on the event. I even went so far as to tune in some of the foreign feeds to see what was being done to the news in other cultures and countries. I particularly liked the bend that was being done in Brazil and Mexico. (While under employed I became addicted to Brazilian soap operas – They are something else.)

    I feel that with the way things are these days, it is imperative that everyone should seek out several sources of information to be able to have a perspective on what is actually happening. Just my opinion.

  • Buck

    Forget the grain of salt , if you really care to be properly informed you have to use your god-given common sense and the internet to educate yourself , as opposed to allowing yourself to be indoctrinated by the progressives , socialists , marxists , communists , and / or fascists .

    • Daveh234

      I hate all those republican Fascists, too.

      • Dale on the left coast

        “Hayek’s challenge was to argue that German Nazism was not an aberrant “right-wing” perversion growing out of the “contradictions” of capitalism. Instead, the Nazi movement had developed out of the “enlightened” and “progressive” socialist and collectivist ideas of the pre-World War I era, which many intellectuals in England and the United States had praised and propagandized for in their own countries.”

        “Fascism” is a term that was originally coined by the Italian dictator Mussolini to describe his adaptation of Marxism to the conditions of Italy after World War I. Lenin in Russia made somewhat different adaptations of Marxism to the conditions in Russia during the same period and his adaptations came to be called Marxism/Leninism. Mussolini stayed closer to Marx in that he felt that Italy had to go through a capitalist stage before it could reach socialism whereas Lenin attempted to push Russia straight from semi-feudalism into socialism. Mussolini’s principal modification of Marxism was his rejection of the notion of class war, something that put him decisively at odds with Lenin’s “Reds”.

        If the term “Fascism” means anything of itself it means “Groupism” — as the fasci of Italy at the time were simply groups of political activists. The fasces of ancient Roman times were of course the bundles of rods carried by the lictors to symbolize the great strength of the organized Roman people. The idea again was that people were stronger in groups than as individuals.

        Mussolini’s ideas and system were very influential and he had many imitators — not the least of which was Adolf Hitler — and some even survived World War II — such as Peron and Chiang Kai Shek. I have set out at length elsewhere what Mussolini’s Italian Fascism was all about so I will simply summarize here by saying that Fascism was a nationalist form of extreme socialism whereas Trotskyism was/is a internationalist form of extreme socialism — with Leninism being somewhere in between.

      • Dale on the left coast

        Dave is a perfect example . . . watch MSNBC too long . . . and you say very silly things . . . that just are not true . . . except in the minds of Mathews, Madcow and Mickey Moore . . . LOL

      • eddie47d

        Dale can bat around the idea that Fascism is not Right Wing all he wants. I guess I could argue that Communism is not Left Wing which of coarse it is. Nazism and Fascism mixed well but neither got along that well with Communism although their were some similar traits in conquests. Communism and Capitalism is very much alive in China or to a degree in Russia .Yet neither is pure Capitalism by any stretch so just because Mussolini winked at Communism for awhile he still didn’t like it. His alliance was with Hitler who also endorsed the Spanish government who was battling Communists . Besides there wasn’t much Socialism in Nazi Germany which the neo-Conservatives in America are trying to say there was.

  • Attila

    Some things are missing here. FOX is very upfront in separating news from commentary, O Reilly being not news but commentary. Mr Rolley, like many folks, sees misconduct from both sides and dismisses all. This superior attitude is intellectually lazy. For generations the news has been dominated by leftist/progressive slant that even with their best efforts did not gull the majority of us. A point Mr Rolley misses is that most of us just dont buy everything we hear. When AM radio was left for dead, it was revived by “talk radio” because most of us were starving for the other side of the story. Rushbo’s audience is not one of converts, but of like thinkers, and he is candid that his show is commentary. It would be great if we could have absolutely neutral news reporting, but that is probably an unrealistic ideal. I would give high marks to FOX for their interview approach, which is to have opposing viewpoints head to head. The interviewer can still slant a little, like with snarky questions, but for the most part it is “fair and balanced”. The left screamed bloody murder and attempted to brand FOX “right wing news” for the sin of even allowing an opposing viewpoint. After losing a large audience, CNN caved and now has copied, but only after permanent loss of credibility. News coverage is getting better, and the internet helps keep it honest. We are all “evolving”, and observing different viewpoints helps. If you live in New York and only read the Times, you are likely to believe Karl Rove is a true rascal, but seeing him interviewed in person a few times will reveal that he is a very reasonable and smart fellow.

    • GregS

      Spot on, Attila!

  • JDN

    As a very young man who joined the military ( 1st Special Operations Wing USAF ) I got an eye opening view of the news . That is to say a lack of it and down right lies . Over the years we did some clandestine missions and usually you won’t hear about them and the ones that did make the news bore no resembalance to what we did . Even things that would seem of little concern to the world at large can’t be reported on truthfully . Seems a shame that the truth and real facts are whats in such short supply .

  • chuckb

    attila, good comment.

    people have to think for themselves, i listen to rush and i watch fox news, i find rush to be right on in my way of thinking, he sure has the bolsheviks figured out. in the meantime i gather news from the internet, dissect that and listen to what the politicians in washington are saying, summarize the bills they are pushing and make up my own mind.

    we can only read what someone else has written and only listen to what someone else says. then we have to decide what we think is right or wrong.
    it is imperative that we have a basic knowledge of what is taught as right or wrong, without that, then we are nothing more than ignorant savages.

  • Carl Manning

    The MSM in America is controlled by the CIA. William Colby, the former CIA Director along with anothr former CIA Director, William Casey, have both pointed this out…

    “The Central Intelligence Agency owns everyone of any significance in the major media.” – William Colby, 1976

    “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.” – William Casey, 1981

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=i8_FckHV3T8

    The MSM/CIA/Mossad/B’nai Brith Zionist Criminal Cabal were completely involved in the 911 Media Deception and the illusion of the Apollo landings on the Moon.

    http://bigeye.com/911mediashow.htm

    “The US media are owned today by men affiliated with banking and industrial corporations and conglomerates that control a government guilty of war crimes on a massive scale. They create turmoil and destruction in the pursuit of profits. To succeed, they must stiffle dissent and reform, the focus of which involves exposing their crimes against humanity, both domestically and abroad.

    These men are doing everything within their power to eliminate every progressive step taken by mankind, including reason itself, from Magna Carta to our own constitution’s Bill of Rights. They scorn the television viewers to whom they brought terror on 911 through a full day of illusions.

    They are war criminals. May the time come that they be held accountable, prosecuted and sentenced by the very people they scorn.”

    The US media also pulled off the fictitious landings on the Moon. They are a CIA/Mossad disinformation and propaganda campaign. That’s why there are some topics they never touch like the Birther issue and the global Bush Sr Cabal made up of most of our current and past Presidents and even Mitt Romney…

    http://tdarkcabal.blogspot.com/2012/06/june-6-2012-white-hats-report-42.html

  • NotThatEllen

    Thanks for a good chuckle…”learning CURB” !!! LOL Where is the learning curb? Or are you trying to “curb” the learning?
    I turned my TV off fifteen years ago. Maybe that is how I know it is a “Learning Curve”! : )

    • Kate8

      NotThatEllen – I don’t know who you are, but TIME has been here for a long time, and maybe he doesn’t always get the expressions exactly right, or even the spelling, he is a very perceptive and intelligent thinker. I, and I’m sure many, respect his views and don’t care about the grammar.

      He is also a kind and decent person with a lot of love in his heart.

      We try not to criticize things like that here, except maybe when someone is obviously across-the-board clueless. We all have things we are good at and things we aren’t so up on, and not everyone is a literary marvel.

      If you have something interesting to offer, I’m sure we’d all like to hear it. Good ideas and thoughts are always welcome.

  • NotThatEllen

    Oh, “TIME” – The learning “CURB” ? Ha! That’s a good one….so true of the narrow view that is presented on the “Tube”.
    A person who reads will know it as a “LEARNING CURVE”. ; )

  • tim johnson

    Hey, Same Rollyah:
    Yeah, right: nearly every American is a boob who can’t or won’t properly inform himself of what’s going on… but then there’s YOUYOU YOU, mr smartypants who has the “burden” of reading all the news all the time and so smartly distlling it down to its true true facts…and this burden is so great that it almost makes you vomit to have to mix with the stupid hoi polloi at the end of the day and take in their swill of ignoramusanity……
    Yes, you are a prince of man.
    why don’t you do yourself – and the other 6 billion in the world – and take a break from lifting such a heavy burden, walk away, far away, into the middle of field, sit down and shut up. for about the rest of your life.
    there is nothing more obnoxious than the boob who thinks he’s so much wiser than all those stooopid mericans out there; and no attitude betrays a low mind better than believing that you are so much smarter than the average guy.
    good grief.
    take a break and go help out at a local soup kitchen for a few years.
    and oh, yeah: SHUT UP. For at least five years.
    We’ll let you know when we feel the need to hear from you again.

  • GregS

    It’s apparent that this is Part II of Sam Rolley’s previous article, Fox News’ Romney Campaign Ad, and I must say that he still misses the point. He does not seem to realize that there is a difference between “news” and “commentary.” He tries to make us believe that FOX produces “propaganda” pieces and attempts to pass them off as “news.” He even calls the FOX video (in his article above) a “news report” after saying:

    “Fox is no longer hiding it, as illustrated by the decision of the producers of ‘Fox and Friends’ to portray the news in a way that looked very much like an ad for the Mitt Romney campaign last week.”

    Mr Rolley, Fox and Friends is an ENTERTAINMENT / OPINION show, NOT a “news” show, and the video being discussed here is a COMMENTARY, NOT a “news” story, and because it wasn’t “news,” FOX can’t be accused of “portray[ing] the news.”

    As others pointed out above, FOX has a variety of entertainment / opinion shows, which have interviews and commentaries, as well as specific news broadcasts. As viewers, we look at these shows, and then go out to other broadcasts on cable, over-the-air, or the internet, to get more facts about whatever is being discussed. We then form our opinions, and then we vote. That’s just the way it works. Get over it! Sure, the interviews and commentaries (like the video in the article on this page) are slanted, but isn’t that what opinions are all about? I would think that anyone with a “neutral” opinion has no opinion at all.

    For Sam Rolley’s benefit I will repeat this one more time:

    INTERVIEWS AND COMMENTARIES ARE NOT “NEWS!”

    • Peter

      Sorry GregS, it is you who miss the point. I have worked in the media and entertainment industry for over 40 years, and I can very confidently tell you that simply labelling a show as ‘commentary/opinion’ does NOT alter the fact it is a very strong segment of the news media. To deliver this sort of programming is an open and deliberate tactic by news media outlets to more precisely focus on their target audience by playing to their interests and bolstering those interests with heavily spun and even blatantly biased material, which in turn delivers another vehicle for the media to attract advertising dollars. In the end, the audience is only cannon-fodder to enable the media to attract those advertising dollars via increased market share, so the more they can play to the perceived interests of their target audience, the better the ratings and the higher the advertising revenue.
      It is also no different to an Op-Ed piece in a newspaper. You can’t separate the Op-Ed piece from the rest of the paper just because it’s an ‘opinion’, and it is deliberately made that way to reach their target audience as in the electronic media.
      Make no mistake, both left and right-wing media outlets practice this.
      Neither is different to, or worse than, the other.
      That is the point of this article I believe, and that unfortunately, most people don’t want to think for themselves and question what they’re being fed by whatever media outlet they choose to indulge in.

      • GregS

        Peter, according to Oxford Dictionaries, the definition of “news” is “newly received or noteworthy information, especially about recent events.” The FOX video discussed above does NOT fit that definition by any stretch of the imagination. Sam Rolley incorrectly labeled it as a “news report.” The fact that it’s a collection of factually accurate information does NOT make it “news.” Otherwise, all history textbooks could be regarded as “news reports.”

        I fully agree that commentary/opinion shows are a very strong segment of the news media, but that does not mean that the commentaries/opinions themselves are “news.” Sam Rolley tries to make us believe that FOX passes commentaries/opinons off as “news,” when it’s just the opposite that’s true: FOX gathers the news from various sources (e.g. from AP, UPI, etc.) and then creates commentaries/opinions accordingly. Whether or not the viewer interprets the commentaries/opinions as “news” is a totally different issue.

        With regard to your last statement:

        “…unfortunately, most people don’t want to think for themselves and question what they’re being fed by whatever media outlet they choose to indulge in.”

        I contend that many people DO think for themselves, and that they have ALREADY questioned, and don’t buy, what they were being fed by media outlets that they were PREVIOUSLY exposed to. This is why they choose to “indulge in” their current media outlet.

      • Peter

        GregS, I agree with you that many people are questioning the information they receive, however I am certain you’ll find that number of people equates to less than 5% of the population, as per the sad but true statistics below this post.

        Whilst in a very ‘Vulcan’ world of pure logic (“Live long and prosper”), your statement about the separation of news and opinion may appear to be correct, the truth of the matter is as I said and as Sam has rightly pointed out but most folks seem to be missing that point, and that is that media of all descriptions and political persuasions today are deliberatley, precisely and increasingly entering into areas of information manipulation designed to tickle the ears of recipients in ways that will appeal to them and/or make a greater sensation, thereby attracting a wider audience who just love to digest whatever inflames or excites their day. The more inflammatory the better for all media outlets, even those thinly disguised as ‘respectable’ still go for the jugular whenever they can, they just appear to be more ‘polite’ at delivering it.
        The simple truth though, as I believe is part of Sam’s point, is that all these different styles of information dissemination are very much a part of the broad category of ‘news’ as it is today, not as it is in a dictionary meaning.

        It is impossible and implausible today to try to separate ‘news’ from ‘opinion’, as all news is tainted by the opinions of editorial control. This occurs in many ways, but includes the ’10 second grab’, selectively edited to bring the most sensational or politically specific point across. Another is selective questioning in interviews, loaded questions aimed at producing a sensational answer.
        In the purist sense you describe from the dictionary, this cannot be classified as ‘news’ either, yet it is daily delivered as such and not as opinion, which it really is.
        The line between information (news) and opinion has very much been blurred for many years and is becoming increasingly blurred as we allow them to go unchallenged.

        The 95% of ‘sheeple’ consume and never question, the 2% & 3% question and decide for ourselves, that’s what makes us dangerous to the elites, because they can’t control us.

  • Peter

    All media outlets rely on the fact that people are inherently lazy and want to be spoon-fed their information, wrapped up in whatever slant they’re comfortable with. Hence the fact few will look outside the spin. Sadly, 2% of people truly think, 3% think they think, and 95% would rather die than think for themselves.

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