Monday, September 23, 2013

fire 'em all

Of course Chuck Todd should be retired, for both his frustrating, lazy-ass reporting and his insufferable smugness.  I think we all can agree about that.

My beef, this morning, is with NPR, to which I have been a loyal listener and supporter since its birth around the time of the Watergate hearings.

At the top of the hour today, NPR mentioned that Obama spoke this weekend at a memorial service for the recent DC mass shooting.  The reporter hastened to add that this was in the face of the recall of Colorado lawmakers who had favored some modest curbs on gun accessibility, then quickly moved on.

Thank you, we have been reminded that the National mood will not tolerate any changes in gun laws.

If you google 'colorado gun recall' you'll see dozens of stories that use phrases like 'big victory for the NRA' and 'loud and clear message', etc.  I had to dig before I found this page, which tells you that John Morse lost by 319 votes, with less than 22% of eligible voters showing up.  Nice work, Colorado.

Yes, I know only the final tally ultimately matters, but a little perspective, due diligence, and very little effort among reporters might have lessened the false message of  'big victory' and 'loud and clear message'.

Which brings me to Cokie Roberts.

Cokie's voice has been in my ears for decades. During her glib summary this morning of the current preposterous House Republican chicanery, she said (paraphrasing) 'the Republican-passed bill reflects polls showing that the majority of Americans do oppose Obamacare.'

Why, oh why, did she not take a moment to add 'of course, there is a calculated, overwhelming lack of public understanding about what Obamacare actually is, and when people are asked about specific actual provisions of the law, polling is always positive.'

But no.  In the current world of NPR News, the pulse of Americans is definitively against toughening access to guns and the (sic) government takeover of health care.

At every opportunity to provide perspective and counter the determination of the Wreckers (a handy term originally used in the old Soviet Union), the opportunity quickly passes. It's the way 'news' is handled in all the highly-visible outlets - the Corporate view must not be challenged.

Following these few minutes of news 'summary' (i.e. castration), NPR Morning Edition then spent the majority of the half-hour on a detailed story concerning the science advisor to the 'Big Bang Theory', with interviews, audio clips, and many details reflecting the thorough reporting that went into this story, which closed out the half-hour with this final stab into my heart: 'This is NPR News'.

Fire them all.

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