Posts Tagged 'Media'

Kontemptible Karl – Update!

We’ve come to this remote island, and you’ll never believe what we’ve found.  The fugitive, Rove!  (Seems he can’t hide here, either.)

Simply serve an arrest warrant, with the assistance of the local authorities, and he’ll be in U.S. custody in no time!  Find out: why he outed a CIA agent, how he targeted and harassed an “unfriendly” governor . . . all on the sly.

I’m Bill Curtis.  And I’ve just found . . . the fugitive, Rove.

Karl rove can’t hide anymore.  Get the Contempt of Congress charge back on the table, and restore this country’s Rule of Law!

(Uncle Rave has been granted full immunity for any resemblance this may have to any actual telecom commercial.)   YUR

What’s Wrong With America?!

This could very easily develop in to an entire series of posts.  There are just SO many areas of American society that have gone off-course over the years.  This country used to adhere to a number of unwritten rules and courtesies, and plain old-fashioned manners that just seem to have fallen by the wayside.  The *whys* are myriad.  It’s a fast paced world, and we’re all in such a rush.  The steady influx of non-European immigrants – legal or otherwise –  with their various cultural differences.  Today’s mainstream media, which is still primarily: television, movies, and modern/popular music, but also includes things such as video games and this most democratic of medias – the internet.  To an ever lessening extant, unfortunately, you could even add the print media to the list.  There’s too many of *us*, and our personal space seems to be shrinking a little more each day.  Some of these things, all of these things, and more things than I have listed, all have contributed to (more like subtracted from) our collective consciousness.

Today’s pet peeve?  The vanishing art of the apology.  More and more adults are forgetting how to do so, or, like so many of today’s children/youth/younger people (what have you), they’ve never really learned the value of a true, not necessarily formal, but sincere apology.  Some would argue that – like the old John Wayne line – apologizing is a sign of weakness.  Lawyers and legal experts equate the apology with culpability and financial responsibility/restitution.  (Probably one good argument for there being too many lawyers, and why our society has grown so litigious.)  This is where we’ve gone wrong, though, because an apology is less about accepting (personal) blame, and more about acknowledging another’s pain.

What are people doing instead of apologizing?  They’re making up excuses, such as:  “I didn’t know.”  Or, they’re rationalizing the situation:  “This wouldn’t have happened if you . . .”  (See, they even go so far as to turn it around, so you’re to blame)  And, of course, the hip and happening end-around to actually apologizing is:  “My bad.”  My bad, or sometimes just:  “My B.” is actually accepting the blame, but it doesn’t acknowledge the other’s pain.  It’s just a gutter/ghetto Mea culpa.  (At least by saying Mea culpa one sounds literate.)  There’s a kind of disconnection with a “My bad”.

In my opinion, the vanishing art of apologizing is going a long way towards making ours one callous society.  It shows both a lack of sympathy and empathy.  Withholding an apology is a very selfish and cowardly act.  People who refuse to utter those two simple words – I’m sorry – are fooling themselves into believing that they, somehow, have the upper hand . . . when all they’ve really done is taken the lower road. 

Two simple words.  Three little syllables.  When they’re said to you, without force and/or sarcasm, don’t they take just that much of the sting away?  Knowing that the other person understands your pain is what keeps us, as social beings, connected.  Two simple words, kids.

Your Uncle Rave

Hillary’s Paranoid Delusions – Part II

Being neither black, nor a woman, I feel I can look at the situation fairly objectively.  Some “individuals” in the media may have demonstrated some form of an anti-woman bias, but a few individuals do not constitute “the media”.  And please, don’t bring up anybody from FOX “News” as an example of Hillary/sexist bashing, because EVERYONE knows the agenda of THAT network. 
I have seen just as much of an empty bias, in favor of Hillary, from some very prominent women in the media.  Maureen Dowd, for example, writes as though Hillary Clinton is the female messiah, and that the presidency is – somehow – her divine right.  Even Gwen Ifill – who I generally admire – has a hard time concealing her obvious bias towards Hillary. 
And, it’s not just women in the media.  After both the Ohio and Pennsylvania primaries Tim Russert could hardly contain himself, he was so happy for Hillary!  And, all the unqualified adjectives (some superlative) that the media used in describing (the few) Clinton victories showed me that “the media” was NOT favoring Obama.  As a matter of fact, though conveniently forgotten, prior to Obama’s upset victory in the Iowa caucuses, he was actually trailing in New Hampshire polls.  But, in the days following Iowa, all of a sudden, the polls had him ahead by nearly 9 % points?!?!  This set up Hillary’s “upset” victory, that the media then ballyhooed, despite the fact that she won by a mere 3%.  In the weeks leading up to the Pennsylvania primary she had as much as a 22% lead over Obama, but when Hillary won by 9.4% the media acted as though it were a major coup.  For a few days they were still crowing about it being a “double digit” victory, when it was known on Wednesday morning that she didn’t crack 10%, which still reflected a drop in support of 12+%.  New York (favorite daughter), Ohio and Pennsylvania set the stage for Indiana, West Virginia and Kentucky.  In Indiana Obama led Clinton by “a statistically-insignificant 45% to 43%, with 7% undecided and a 3.9% margin of error”, yet her 1.12% victory was also hailed as a major upset by the very media that is allegedly against her, and for Obama.  And, with West Virginia and Kentucky, Obama realized that his chances of any kind of enlightenment of those states’ – predominantly non-educated, working class, white – voters were slim to none, so he focused his energies on the primaries where he at least stood a chance of winning.  In most political circles, this is considered good strategy.  Clinton’s victories in those two states were predictable, especially considering the not so subtle race card she had been playing since the Ohio primary.  And, yet again, the nasty sexist media somehow found a way to heap the superlatives for those victories of hers that were always forgone conclusions to begin with.  Adjectives, such as “Trounce” and “Landslide” for these particular states could just as easily have been replaced with “Duh”. 

Some feel that Hillary is the only one who can carry the South.  On the contrary, Obama has actually won more southern contests than Clinton.  (Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas and Missouri)  The only southern states that Hillary won were Tennessee, Kentucky (two “Duh” states), Arkansas (former favorite daughter), and Florida.  And, Florida was predictable, considering its constituency, and doesn’t count, regardless, because they (like Michigan) ignored the rules and held unsanctioned primaries. 
In my mind it has been just too easy for some to make the sexist allegations.  Women, who seem to value feminism, over everything else, are all too willing to make mountains out of the molehills.  It helps in casting themselves as the oppressed, because it allows them to claim “a” (not “the”) moral high ground.  Hillary’s core supporters (other than the race-baited “hard-working whites”) are the white women, who are generally 50 and over.  They lived through the big feminist movement that ran from the latter ’60s through the early ’80s.  They are more in tune with the disappointment of the failure of not passing the ERA (Equal Rights Amendment).  In my opinion, these supporters are wearing blinders that allow them a very narrow focus, but prohibit them from seeing all that is going on around them.  I applaud those who have had the courage to remove those blinders, and I hope and pray that more of them will find that same courage.

Sexism and racism are, unfortunately, still factors in our society, and for that matter most of the world.  It’s clear to me, as it should be clear to others, which candidate is playing up the bias angle, and which one is trying to reach out to the broadest spectrum of the electorate. 

Your Uncle Rave

Language Abuse

You all know about: child abuse, spousal abuse, elder abuse, patient abuse, employee abuse and animal abuse.  Those are some of the unfortunate ills that plague our society.  As ugly as they are they’re pretty straightforward and obvious.  There’s nothing subtle about those kind of abuses.  But, what about something that is more subtle and insidious?  What about language abuse?  No.  I’m not talking about abusive language.  (That takes it’s toll on a society, as well.  But, that’s a topic for a different discussion.)   I’m talking about abusing the written and spoken word.

Language abuse is almost always done with a kind of emphasis, and/or inflection, to connote a negative meaning to a word that wasn’t designed – in any way – as a negative.  It isn’t exactly a new phenomenon, but we’re seeing it more and more, in the media and in politics – especially in politics.

Probably, THE most classic example of this is the word “liberal”.  Traditionally, it’s an adjective.  Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin liberalis suitable for a freeman, generous, from liber  free; perhaps akin to Old English lēodan to grow, Greek eleutheros free.  Synonyms include: generous, bountiful, munificent, openhanded, and broad-minded.  (Courtesy of Merriam-Webster Online)  All pretty positive, no matter how you look at it, right?

But, when someone repeatedly and continuously says the word with an audible sneer in their voice it soon takes on a totally different meaning.  Many people are very suggestible.  When they hear a word constantly being used, with such disdain, they eventually associate it with something bad.  These pseudo-wordsmiths will even drag out the word, for added affect.  “Llliberal!!!”  It’s like you’re calling someone a criminal, or a leper, or some other kind of person to be avoided.  It’s actually pretty comical, except that it’s only too effective, as a kind of conditioning tactic.  It’s a very manipulative tool in training the suggestible.

But the latest abused word is “cling”.  You know, as in “they cling to guns and religion”.  Hillary Clinton was the first to try to demonize the word.  She wanted to make hay, and score some politcal points with working class whites (with limited education), by taking the line completely out of context.  But, she really went out of her way to stress the word “cling”.  As though “1 a: to hold together b: to adhere as if glued firmly c: to hold or hold on tightly or tenaciously 2 a: to have a strong emotional attachment or dependence” was a bad thing.  I think most of the people, being referred to in Obama’s speech, are actually proud to hold on tightly to guns and religion.

But, the way that Hillary stressed the word was to try to evoke “clingy”, which denotes more of an emotional dependence than a strong adherence.  So, when you take the line out of it’s context AND stress a word, in a misleading way, it makes what Obama said sound like an insult.  But, in reality what Obama was saying is that the federal government has let these people down, for so long, that they really don’t have a whole lot to hang on to.

If you haven’t heard the line in it’s proper context this what he actually said.   “You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them.  And they fell through the Clinton Administration, and the Bush Administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”  He was explaining the frustrations of the working class Americans, and how the government has let them down.  But the opportunistic wordsmiths saw an opportunity to exploit a few words (and a line) to their advantage, and to the speaker’s disadvantage.  And in doing so, actually exploit the very people that it’s referring to.

Hillary may have started this one, but John McCain – and his camp – are eagerly playing this up, to make Obama sound like an elitist who can’t relate to the working class.  You will be hearing this clinging remark repeatedly, leading up to the November election, because they’re pretty darn sure that enough people will be taken in by the way they have chosen to frame it.

These are just a couple examples of language abuse.  There are, and there will be, plenty more where these come from.  If we consider all the other types of abuse as criminal maybe we should consider those who – so flagrantly – abuse language as criminals.

Your Uncle Rave



Help STOP big media consolidation

Courtesy of CREDO

Dear Friend,

Last year the Federal Communications Commission pushed through new rules that gutted the local “cross-ownership” prohibition. This would mean MORE big conglomerates gobbling up our local papers and TV stations — which is bad for media diversity and bad for our democracy.

However, the Senate has introduced a resolution that will reverse the FCC’s new rules. I’ve just signed a petition to Majority Leader Reid and my senators in support of this resolution, and I hope you will too.

In this very important election year, are we willing to let a handful of companies continue to control what we see, hear and read every day?

I hope you’ll have a look and take action.


Your Uncle Rave . . . says sign it!

“The Hillary Waltz” Response

Yesterday, in The New York Times, the esteemed Maureen Dowd penned a clever little article about how Hillary’s hanging on has been good for Barack.  I actually enjoy her work, but felt that this piece required some kind of response.  Read as much of her article as you like at:

Here’s what your uncle thinks:

There’s a lot of truth to it.  Surviving everything that the Clintons have thrown at him (kitchen sink strategy) has probably made Obama tougher for it.  But, I can only agree with the piece up to a point.  First, Ahmadinejad is a big-mouthed figurehead, with limited credibility and clout.  The corporate media has made him out to being the second coming of Hitler, but there are plenty more intimidating characters than him.  Having to stare down John McCain alone, is a tougher proposition than facing the man who denies – with a straight face – that there are any “homosexuals” in his country.  The second thing is that when she says that “Hillary’s work is done when she is done” comes off – more than a little – like: Hillary does what she wants!  Like it, or lump it!  Not exactly constructive, or mature for that matter.  And lastly, the whole piece sounds a little like it’s coming from someone who’s desperately hoping that lightning can strike . . . again . . . one more time, and their chosen candidate could still prevail.
I think Hillary’s value added has peaked, and from here on out we’re facing the law of diminishing return.
Thanks for the dance lessons, Hillary!  We’ll take it from here.  On to the ball!

Your Uncle Rave

P.S. Look for Hillary on the next season of “Dancing With The Stars”.

Spitzkrieg Slop

(All apologies to Tommy Ramone)

Spitzkrieg Slop 

Hey, ho!  Let go!  Hey, ho!  Let go!
Hey, ho!  Let go!  Hey, ho!  Let go!

They found out I am Client 9
I stepped upon a land mine
Matt Lauer’s losing his mind
The Spitzkrieg Slop

They found out I paid 4 grand
Joe Bruno told me: Pound sand
I’ll soon be using my hand
The Spitzkrieg Slop

Hey, ho!  Let go. Shoot me in the crotch now
What they want, for me to go
They smelled blood, what a show

They’re foaming at the mouth now
And Silda’s having a cow
My girls’ll hear it, and how
The Spitzkrieg Slop

They’re piling on in Wall Street
Because they know I’m dead meat
They’re kicking me in the seat
The Spitzkrieg Slop

Hey, ho!  Let go. Shoot me in the crotch now
What they want, for me to go
They smelled blood, what a show

I cheated on my haus frau
She’s gonna make me say: Ow
She’ll take away my kids now
The Spitzkrieg Slop

They’ve gotten up my behind
So now I’ve got to resign
The poontang wasn’t THAT fine
The Spitzkrieg Slop

Hey, ho!  Let go!  Hey, ho!  Let go!
Hey, ho!  Let go!  Hey, ho!  I’LL GO!!!

Who luvs ya, babies?  Your Uncle Rave does.

der Spitzkrieg!!!

Hokey smokes, Bullwinkle!  Have you EVER heard a story like this get THIS much media coverage???  In such a short span of time?  Eyewitness News should change their tagline to: “All Eliot, all the time!”  It’s like the death of Princess Di, or JFK Jr.  It’s the Shock and Awe of semi-important tawdry behavior.  I find the amount of coverage – can you say overkill – just as, if not more so, unseemly as the actual transgression.

The sanctimonious nodding of the news anchors’ heads, all with that gleam in their eyes, just reinforces my opinion of America’s corporate media.  They spew their WMD (Weapons of Mass Distraction) to please their corporate masters, at the expense of keeping the public informed on issues of real importance.

Eliot Spitzer got his hand caught in the nookie jar!  Oooh, a sex scandal!  Puh-lease!  Sure, there is some importance to it.  He betrayed the public’s trust – blah, blah, blah.  There’s the element of hypocrisy – yada, yada, yada.  Oh, his poor wife and kids!  Wah, wah, waaa-aaaaah!  Is this life or death?  Is this more important than ‘Eight U.S. Soldiers Die in Iraq Attacks’?  My paper only reported on the five who died from the suicide bomber.  What of the other three?  Don’t they matter?  It was the deadliest day for U.S. troops in over two months.  And, where was this story displayed?  It was buried on page 5 . . . of the B section.  Typical.

They get away with this kind of reporting because we allow them to.  We should be shouting out the window, and from the roof tops, like that guy from “Network”: “I’m mad as Hell, and I’m not going to take it anymore!”  But, we don’t.  Half of us are too cowed to rock the boat, and the other half are too lazy and apathetic.  Real news requires real thinking and introspection.  Maybe we don’t want to look inside ourselves because we know we won’t like what we see.  Hmmmm.

But, I digress.  Let’s all take off our judgmental caps for a while.  Let’s get past the sensationalism.  And, let’s try to regain a little perspective.

Your Uncle Rave

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March 2023

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