No foreplay today…
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Media Control & the McCain Myth
Today, you can go for weeks getting all your news and entertainment through one giant corporation: Time Warner. From books to TV to movies to magazines to internet portals, ownership of the media industry has become concentrated.
One company, Clear Channel, for example, owns more than 1,000 radio stations, most of which operate by remote control, playing prerecorded material.
When I first read the seminal study, Media Monopoly by Ben Bagdikian, there were about 50 corporations controlling the majority of the media available to Americans ™. Mergers and buyouts have enlarged the companies and reduced the number of owners. In 2004, just five corporations controlled a majority of American ™ newspapers, magazines, TV and radio stations, book publishers, and movie studios: Time Warner, Disney, News Corp., Bertelsmann, and Viacom.
This is why the idiots who keep yelling out “Liberal media!” make me laugh: if you think the corporate officers at major, multinational corporations are flaming liberals with a hidden agenda to socialize the world, then I promise to pull out if it hurts.
Liberal media… yeah right. Liberal media my a$$.
You might think much of this. In fact, you might be trying hard not to think at all, but this concentration of ownership allows a very few individuals to have enormous influence over news, information, and entertainment available to the public. It’s why I can’t blame Will Smith for his latest offering, Hancock, in which the main character, a drunken black superhero, is never shown kissing his equally powerful (and white!) wife. You can’t lay the powerful influences at the feet of Mr. Smith, as popular as he may be, he is just a cog in the machine.
Anyway… while the big media companies compete against one another in some ways, they also help each other out. In 2004, the five corporations engaged in 141 joint business projects that totaled in the hundred of millions of dollars.
This is probably why you still think Iraq and Al Qaeda were connected, that there are WMDs in Iraq, and that John McCain, the presumptive republican candidate for the presidency, is a “maverick.,” a progressive republican liberals can live with.
Nothing could be further from the truth, but you’ll never hear on the major networks, or even at the Washington Post or NY Times – arguably the most influential newspapers. I can’t delve deeply into McCain today, but I offer the following for your own erudition:
Maverick? McCain was sent to one of the most elite boarding schools in
In his own words, he was a very violent individual from childhood. His rage seems to be a core component to his personality: describing his own childhood, McCain has written: “At the smallest provocation I would go off into a mad frenzy, and then suddenly crash to the floor unconscious. When I got angry I held my breath until I blacked out.”
He claims he was transformed by his experiences in
(Okay: More than three million Vietnamese died; how much harder could it have been fought?) His plane was shot down on a bombing raid over
Most of you won’t remember, but McCain was at the center of one of the most costly corruption scandals in US History: he was part of the Keating Five.” In 1987, it was revealed that McCain, along with four other senators, had taken huge campaign donations from a fraudster called Charles Keating. In return, they pressured government regulators not to look too hard into Keating's affairs, allowing him to commit even more fraud. McCain later admitted: “I did it for no other reason than I valued [Keating’s] support.”
McCain has constantly harped on how “we need to drive the special interests out of
However, McCain is most troublesome when it comes to his stances on foreign policy.
At a rally earlier in the year, he sang “Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb
McCain has never met a humanitarian effort he liked, mocking proposals to intervene in
Today, McCain dreamily describes as “an exotic adventure” his granddad’s war experience, who fought in the Philippine wars at the turn of the 20th century. He was part of a mission to crush the local resistance to the
McCain’s father was an integral part of crushing the democratically elected government of Juan Bosch in the
These values are what drive McCain today. He brags that he would be happy to have US troops in
I don’t think so. I see him as more of the McSame.