Americans should take a close look at the recent Republican Party primary electioneering. Have you ever seen anything so crude and low? It matches the Vietnam "veterans" criticism of decorated Vietnam veteran John Kerry by the Republicans. At that time it didn't matter if lies were told, history distorted, etc. The same thing happened in the Romney-Gingrich hissy-fit. It was crude to the max.
I won't only remember this in the presidential election, I shall remember it as a trend in Republican politics. And while there is much to remember what was said by both Romney and Gingrich, what will stick in my mind are the tactics that were used and where all the money came from to pay for the ads. It is not that big money has taken over our presidential elections, it is that big money has taken over our democracy and every facet of the United States of America. You no longer count. You are simply a country bumpkin who can be conned, manipulated, duped, and "puppetized." You are seen as a stupid dude at a country carnival who can be made to believe anything yelled at a tent sideshow. All that is needed is more money to repeat over and over and over the lies and distortions. The more sideshow barkers, the better chance that you will buy some of the snake oil.
Mitt Romney got the endorsement of Donald Trump. So? Well, Newt was hoping for it. Imagine, the endorsement of Donald Trump meaning anything. Repulsive. Has Donald Trump ever read a book? In the USA it doesn't matter. If you have money, you are miraculously intelligent, erudite, insightful, etc.
Donald Trump has used carnival and sideshow methods to garner media attention. And the media falls for it. It is a great deal like right-wing radio. The right-wing, screaming liars on right-wing radio get credit for simply having good audience numbers. If you are crazy enough, you can get a large audience. As I have stated here before, I can tell you how to get immense audience numbers. Promote an upcoming program that has a starlet having sex with a non-human. Audience numbers will go throught the roof. Or announce that a famous young starlet is going to deliver her baby on a TV program. Zoom! Getting a large audience is easy, if you have no conscience, taste, or discretion. It happens all the time. Howard Stern is not much different than Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity in getting a large audience.
There have been tens of thousands of anti-Assad people complaining and even demonstrating against the current regime in Syria for some time. It never got organized. Now, suddenly, there is greater organization and even a Free Syrian Army. Suddenly everything has escalated. Suddenly military officers are defecting from the Syrian army. Suddenly the Western press puts Syria in its headlines. Suddenly the Arab League starts to pay attention to what is happening inside an Arab nation. Suddenly...suddenly...suddenly............
What's going on? You won't find out by listening to or reading or watching American media. U.S. news organizations are clueless, and think that the uprising in Syria is instantaneous combustion. Wrong!
A recently released book reveals the time 50 years ago when the President of the United States. John F. Kennedy, took a 19-year-old intern as his mistress. He also took her virginity and lots more. And she may not have been the only one. And the former young mistress reveals a darker side of the President.
A-ha, scream the right-wingers. Those are the morals of the left-wingers. Huh?
Having given speeches throughout Europe and North America, I was always amazed that the most insane and crude comments came right here at my first blog. I asked people to act more civilized in their comments about the blog, but far more important, that they treat other people who commented with respect and civility. Apparently that was impossible for some. The ignorant, judgmental, bigoted, sexist, and religious hatred continued. I asked several times that those writing that way feel free to be critical of me, but to restrain themselves and act civilized when commenting about others who shared ideas and thoughts here. So, reluctantly, I stopped allowing all the crude comments to be made, and it meant ending comments altogether. I am constantly amazed that in the 21st century there are still Neanderthals who must act out with bigotry, sexism, religious hatred, unfounded exaggerations, narrow-mindedness, and ignorance. All-the-while they are totally unaware of how they have been manipulated.
Political opinions are one thing, but all that hatred has no place in print anywhere. I never expected all people commenting to have a Ph.D., or an M.A., or even have an I.Q. above ten. We have lost our way as a nation and as a culture. Today's right-wingers and left-wingers are an embarrassment to our society, our nation, our people. Hatred prevails. Bigotry holds forth. Sexism lives. Ignorance trumps intellect and insight. We have no idea anymore what civilized discourse means. Right or left, we cannot express our opinions without spewing hatred, distortion, lies, and personal attacks. Read the newspapers and magazines. Listen to American radio. America has taken giant strides backwards.
When I listen to the BBC I am astonished at what is NOT covered in American media. The BBC is not dependent on the same advertising behemoths that American media is. Advertising rules in the USA.
There has always been a right-wing slant to American media reporting. Of course the right-wingers will dispute that. But while news sources and media news stories may be good, there is a silent, hidden fear of angering the huge advertisers who make for media profits. And many of these immense advertisers are the same corporations that make huge profits off of war and the production of war machinery. In fact, some of the largest corporate producers of war equipment have owned networks and major media outlets. News syndicate owner, Hearst, bragged about how he could get a war started.
Since the Republican Party can't find a suitable candidate to nominate for the Presidential election, they have jumped at any issue they can to try and get some traction for their party until a rescuer arrives. And the weak, stumbling GOP presidential hopefuls have argued against things that they were for just recently.
The latest wobbly vehicle they are riding is their criticism of the Obama administration's attempt to require Catholic hospitals and universities to offer their employees contraceptive health care benefits. The Republicans have rushed to shout that this is an attack on their religious freedom. Hmmm.
There are many news stories and developments that are not covered by the press in the U.S. I'm not refering to some off-shoot or cult example. I'm not even in agreement about some of the news stories that are ignored, and I'm comfortable that they never find their way into print or on the screen. But news should be covered, and done so objectively, by professional journalists. An example of news stories that the American media CHOOSES to ignore or give little attention follows. I'm not taking sides, but I wonder why these types of news stories are ignored. Could it be because the war corporations buy lots of advertising?
The Pew Research Center, a nonpartisan organization, conducted a large study a couple months ago of American military veterans who had served in either Iraq or Afghanistan or both. One in three of the post-9/11 vets believes the war in Iraq and Afghanistan were not worth fighting, and a majority think that after 10 years of combat "America should be focusing less on foreign affairs and more on its own problems..."
Several years ago, because of my pro-active participation in the civil rights movement throughout America, and because I had recently moved back to Milwaukee, the local NAACP President invited me to speak to the board of directors. I had seen the assertive and brave actions that the Milwaukee NAACP had taken during the 1960s. Many issues facing minorities in Milwaukee were brought to the forefront by the local NAACP. So, I was honored to speak to the local NAACP board.
I opened my talk to the board by saying, "Where in the hell have you been?" I mentioned how I knew first-hand the important role that was played by their local chapter in the 1960s and beyond. I mentioned some personal experiences I had had being alongside the young NAACP Commandos and other actions. I praised the work and witness that the NAACP made in the evolution of housing rights, civil rights, etc. in Milwaukee. And then, in my opinion, the NAACP in Milwaukee fell far too silent. Perhaps I missed something as I lived in other cities. But knowing of their bravery and impact, I wondered what had happened. Where was the organization?
It continues to amaze me that people still believe the posers in our society who brag about their sincerity, honesty, morality, and Christian values, and then secretly do the opposite. And it is getting worse. Look at the candidates vying to get the nomination of their party for President of the United States. Phonies to the max, hoaxes personified, deceivers, liars, offering their double-standard judgments of their opponents.
Mitt Romney was Governor of Massachusetts, and was a leader in getting health care reform passed. In fact, his form of health care reform parallels what is now dubbed Obamacare nationally. People love Romneycare and every poll indicates strong support of it. It works. But Mitt Romney has to run away from it in order to have any chance of getting the Republican Party nomination. The people vote for its popularity and success, but in the two-faced, double-standard atmosphere of partisan politics, the people be damned. Who do the people think they are to expect their judgment to hold any weight? We must criticize any program that does not continue to maximize and protect the profits of the health insurance and health care industries. And so to win over the gullible public, a series of lies and distortions are concocted and given immense money support by the very industries that benefit from these lies and distortions.