Monday, July 31, 2006

The newspeak of George Orwellian Bush

When America’s daily city newspapers and broadcast networks are owned by huge media conglomerates, which are mostly owned by the wealthiest people in the country -- folks that are more likely to be Republicans than not -- who is it that's tricking all those fat cat-owned companies into hiring liberal editors and reporters?

As we’ve been hearing about the liberal bias of the media for decades, how is it that rightwing owners can’t break the habit of hiring leftwing content providers? Why would they have such a peculiar habit?

Well, the answer is so simple it sometimes gets overlooked: The liberal bias charge is mostly bogus. While it’s true that individual reporters have their leanings, as we all do, the notion that most reports from the mainstream media are deliberately tilted to the left is absurd.

Yet, there are two good reasons a lot of people buy that notion: One is that it gets repeated so many times some people accept it, just as they swallow everything else Madison Avenue dishes out with repetitive campaigns. The other is that many want to believe it, because it facilitates their need to feel victimized, while allowing them to dismiss ideas they don’t like, or don't understand.

In “Reign of Error,” columnist Paul Krugman is depressed that a new Harris poll says 50 percent of Americans believe Iraq really had weapons of mass destruction when it was invaded in 2003. That figure is up from 36 percent in February of 2005, in spite of all the international reports that say nothing was found in Iraq to justify the “imminent threat” to America described by President George Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, et al, in the run-up to the invasion.

“...It’s hard to imagine what the world looks like to the large number of Americans who get their news by watching Fox and listening to Rush Limbaugh, but I get a pretty good sense from my mailbag. Many of my correspondents are living in a world in which the economy is better than it ever was under Bill Clinton, newly released documents show that Saddam really was in cahoots with Osama, and the discovery of some decayed 1980s-vintage chemical munitions vindicates everything the administration said about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction.”

Of course, a third reason to toss that "liberal bias" red herring into the stream of discussion is to simply do as much political mischief as possible by muddying the water.

6 Comments:

Blogger James Young said...

Talk about Orwellian! Citation to Krugman --- a well-known sufferer of Bush Derangement Syndrome (though Krugman may well have been deranged before-hand) --- hardly supports any argument.

Of course, most revealing is your misrepresentation that "the 'imminent threat' to America [was] described by President George Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, et al, in the run-up to the invasion."

Of course, the whole point of a doctrine of pre-emption is to address a threat BEFORE it becomes imminent and that, of course, was the argument made by the Administration, for good or ill. That you have to misrepresent the argument made demonstrates the emptiness of your position.

July 31, 2006 at 2:31 PM  
Blogger F.T. Rea said...

james young,

You attack Krugman’s argument by attacking him, instead of his words -- argument against the man. That approach will get you nowhere in a high school debate, governed by rules of logic.

It also gets you nowhere at SLANTblog.

By the way, it’s not hard to check on Krugman’s background, he’s an economist turned OpEd writer. Sometimes I agree with him, sometimes I don't. This time I do.

Your convenient interpretation of the “imminent threat” we were told by Bush and his prevaricating salesmen that existed in February of 2003 is a rewriting of history -- whether you know it ... want to admit it ... or whatever.

Moreover, your comments did nothing to challenge my premise -- the familiar “liberal bias” charge is a red herring.

Hey, I live in Richmond, Virginia. No honest, serious person would say this town is dominated by a liberal press. But I’m sure some people would say it anyway, just for the hell of it.

Your trash-talk might play well with a lobotomized bunch of Rush Limbaugh’s dittoheads, sir, but not here. Your ilk can’t win a debate with the weight of your argument, so sloganeering and disinformation substitute for logic and facts.

July 31, 2006 at 3:22 PM  
Blogger James Young said...

As usual, F.T., your citation to high-school debate rules depends upon your mischaracterization/misrepresenation of the point that was actually made, i.e., that Krugmans's well-established Bush-hating credentials call into question virtually anything he says. In this case, it is the misrepresentation that the Administration described Iraq as an "imminent threat," a claim that ignores BOTH the facts and the underlying theory of preemption, i.e., that threats should be addressed BEFORE they become imminent.

And before you dismiss it as "trash-talk," you might want to cite even a single instance where ANY Administration foffical described the threat as "imminent." You won't, because you can't, because it simply didn't happen. In short, your minor premise --- "Bush lied" --- is, itself, a knowing and intentional lie.

August 2, 2006 at 11:22 PM  
Blogger F.T. Rea said...

James Young,

Horsefeathers!

August 3, 2006 at 12:38 AM  
Anonymous Bigot Hater said...

James Young often throws out names and insults to get his point across. You would expect better behavior out of him but you can't.

Now did the administration say "imminent"? No. But they sure said "urgent" and "dangerous" to describe the threat up to the war. But James is an apologist for the President. Plain and simple.

August 4, 2006 at 8:24 AM  
Blogger Triscula said...

What the hell does the "theory of preemption" have to do with the arguments that were presented to the public to induce support for the administration's goals in Iraq? The theory of preemption is something to be discussed in political chat rooms, think tanks, and poli-sci classrooms. Drumming up support for going to war requires something less...er..academic. Administration officials and Bush himself used rhetoric (repeatedly) designed to cast Iraq as an urgent threat to the US. Describing it any other way is simply bullshit.

August 6, 2006 at 6:35 PM  

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