“A lie keeps growing and growing until it’s as plain as the nose on your face.”
― spoken by The Blue Fairy in the 1940 Disney film Pinocchio.
This coming Monday at 5pm, Supreme Leader has promised to announce the winners of the Fake News awards, according to him. Media personalities are lining up for the most prestigious of the Fakies awards, because to be called a liar by the biggest liar of them all is quite an honor. Stephen Colbert of the Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS) talk program The Late Show has taken out an ad in New York City’s Times Square to promote himself and his show for Supreme Leader’s top honors. This is becoming a big deal.
The enemy of my enemy is my friend – that’s the operating principle here. To be called out for Fake News by the biggest liar in the country is not only praise of a kind, but an endorsement. And now Supreme Liar will be bestowing awards of some sort on the highest honorees, though what that might be he has not made clear yet. Suffice to say that any news organization would be satisfied with the honor alone because of the boost to their ratings or readership, never mind the additional prestige. This must have been what Supreme Egotist meant in his recent New York Times interview when he suggested the media needs him around for the re-election campaign in 2020 to boost their income.
Awards and trophies have been a part of western civilization for millennia, at least since the ancient Greeks gave out laurel wreaths and cash gifts to winning Olympic athletes. In the twentieth century, the awards and trophies business really took off since entertainment businesses in particular found out giving them away in publicized ceremonies was a great way to let the tasteless public know what publications, movies, television shows, what have you, had the imprimatur of good taste from supposed authorities within the business, raising more revenue from the public, who now knew how to impress their friends and neighbors when they bought culture.
The Big Brother Award from the United Kingdom based organization Privacy International. Near the end of George Orwell’s dystopian novel 1984, the representative of state power, O’Brien, says to the protagonist, Winston, “‘If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face – forever.'”
The Fakies, as proposed by Supreme Dotard, promise something a little off kilter from the usual awards bestowing because they will be more in line with the Razzies, an anti-award for bad movie making. But since the Razzies awarders do not take themselves or their task too seriously, there will still be a difference in solemnity between the granting of Razzies and that of Fakies, because the awarder of the latter prizes takes himself all too seriously, as do many of his more die hard supporters. There are the cynical supporters among the upper classes who were only interested in seeing through the enactment of things like the recent tax cut package for themselves and their rich friends, and then there are the true believers among the lower classes who are mainly in it to spite leftists, with their definition of leftist being anyone to the other side of Dwight Eisenhower, who if he were alive today would himself be suspect.
The great Spike Milligan accepted a lifetime achievement award in 1994.
One important point that needs addressing here is that this very website has been first and foremost in denouncing the regime of Der Lügner since it started, and should therefore be in line to receive a Fakie as a promulgator of Fake News by light of how the regime judges these things. If this website receives a Fakie on Monday, rest assured the glow of its bestowal will shower contributors and readers alike with a penumbra of honor from an unimpeachable source – or an impeachable one, as may be the case.
And if all others accepted the lie which the Party imposed – if all records told the same tale – then the lie passed into history and became truth. ‘Who controls the past,’ ran the Party slogan, ‘controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.’ And yet the past, though of its nature alterable, never had been altered. Whatever was true now was true from everlasting to everlasting. It was quite simple. All that was needed was an unending series of victories over your own memory. ‘Reality control,’ they called it: in Newspeak, ‘doublethink.’
― from 1984, by George Orwell.
The idea, so long promulgated that people have come to uncritically accept it as truth, of a “liberal media”, meaning by that the mainstream, corporate media, has never been more laughable than today. If people think corporate media outlets such as Cable News Network (CNN), Microsoft National Broadcasting Company (MSNBC), the New York Times, and the Washington Post, are “liberal” then perhaps their definition needs adjustment, because all of these media outlets are owned by giant corporations, and giant corporations are not known for liberal views.
Reproduction of a Charles Mills painting by the Detroit Publishing Company, depicting a young Benjamin Franklin (center) at work on a printing press.
What is more important with news is what is left out than what is left in and reported on. Those are the editorial decisions that filter down from corporate headquarters. Individual reporters may be to the left of Karl Marx, but it hardly matters if editors change their stories at the bidding of headquarters. What matters are the terms of debate, or what is open to question and what is not. Much of this is internalized by reporters eventually, or they don’t get to become editors. They have certainly learned and adopted as Gospel the rules of the game by the time they are ready to move up to senior staff.
But readers or viewers of the news never learn what has been left out by politic editors on behalf of their conservative corporate masters. Not every corporate master is conservative? Doubtful. Liberalism doesn’t go with that territory. Some astute members of the public may pick up the general drift of coverage from a particular outlet, but when it comes down to really important matters, they are addressed in nearly the same way by all the corporate media. It comes down to the narcissism of minor differences that Sigmund Freud pointed out when he wrote “It is precisely the minor differences in people who are otherwise alike that form the basis of feelings of hostility between them.” For the diversion of the masses, educated as well as uneducated, the pundits on television and in the op-ed pages of the newspapers dispute how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, while their corporate masters fleece everyone of every last dollar. It’s a neat trick.
All of that aside, it truly is a disgrace to see the open contempt the current presidential administration and it’s Republican allies around the country display for the Fourth Estate, the Free Press. The corporate, greed-based media, have brought some of this treatment upon themselves with their craven promotion of a shallow reality television star for president – what did they expect? – but what is truly unfortunate is how the disgraceful treatment coming from the White House press room has overflowed to independent news outlets that try to honestly hew to journalistic principles.
The Artist’s Father, Reading “L’Événement”, an 1866 painting by Paul Cézanne (1839-1906).
There are questions to answer, however, before getting up in arms about the bad behavior of the current presidential administration in how it treats media it doesn’t like. First of all, the question of how the current crowd got into office can be bypassed. They are there now, and that’s that. The main question for now is: Who watches these television news shows uncritically and then counts themselves as informed? and Who reads these newspapers that have long since stopped being liberal in anything but stale reputation only, and thinks that they are caught up on the latest left of center take on important issues? Who are these delusional viewers and readers whose uncritical attention and financial support allows this charade to continue and thrive? Are they the ones who support a Free Press against an antagonistic, authoritarian regime in Washington, D.C.? Don’t bet your last corporate media stock share on it.
Ultimately it was hoped to make articulate speech issue from the larynx without involving the higher brain centres at all. This aim was frankly admitted in the Newspeak word duckspeak […]. Like various words in the B vocabulary, duckspeak was ambivalent in meaning. Provided that the opinions which were quacked out were orthodox ones, it implied nothing but praise, and when the Times referred to one of the orators of the Party as a doubleplusgood duckspeaker it was paying a warm and valued compliment.
― George Orwell, from the Appendix to 1984.
The answer to the question headlining this post is “It depends.” If you are a staunch Democrat and keep up with the latest articles from your favored media outlets about the 2016 election, then you might see Russians lurking around every corner, pulling strings to upend Hillary Clinton (mission acomplished!) and boost their boy, now known as our Supreme Leader. If, on the other hand, you are a die-hard Republican faithfully following your favored media outlets, you are apt to think “Russians? What Russians? I don’t see any Russians around here!” You might think that the whole stink about Russians hacking the 2016 election is fake news promulgated by liberal media for consumption by whiny Democratic (or Democrat, dropping the “ic” at the end when the word is used an adjective to make it sound flat and harsh, according to the Newspeak of Newt Gingrich and his kind since the 1980s) losers.
No one really knowshow much the Russians may have influenced the election, and may not for a while yet pending sober inquiries from Congress, which seem increasingly unlikely. The majority in this country, who are neither staunch nor die-hard, likely have other things to worry about day by day, and anyway they can see the dispute over the Russians is descending into another ideological fight in a mud pit, and so they would just as soon tune it all out, mostly. Democratic supporters of Clinton will continue to cling to any external source for their candidate’s loss – for it was a loss, not a defeat– rather than face a mirror and admit their party has lost its way, while Republican backers of El Supremo will continue to use the issue as a club – their favorite instrument of debate – to CRUSH (all CAPS, their second favorite instrument!) challenges to his authority and legitimacy. Meanwhile the intelligence agencies, sensing a vacuum and sidling out of their place ever more boldly, have skulked from the shadows in the wings and taken center stage. This is going from bad to worse too quickly. It is doubleplusungood.
Once again Arizona has stepped forward with groundbreaking legislation after the State Senate passed on Wednesday, February 22, a bill that would allow the state to charge the organizers of peaceful protests with racketeering if rioting erupts. Among the niceties of the bill are civil asset forfeiture, allowing the state to seize the property of the protest organizers. How do you keep taxes low? By stealing! The bill awaits review in the State House of Representatives. The last time the Arizona legislature made such a big splash in the national news was 2010, when it led the way in the fight against illegal immigration with the “Show me your papers” bill that went all the way to the United States Supreme Court, which struck down three of its four provisions. The back and forth on that bill between Arizona Governor Jan Brewer and President Barack Obama ultimately led to the finger wagging incident (Yay, Jan!) on the tarmac of the Phoenix airport in 2012.
A scene from 1984, starring John Hurt, Richard Burton, and Suzanna Hamilton.Lest we forget Obama and his usefulness, he’s masquerading here as the hated Emmanuel Goldstein on the screen in the auditorium.
This seems as good a time as any to propose an Alternative Constitution. There’s no need to formalize things with a constitutional convention, though if one were really necessary there couldn’t be two better candidates to co-chair the convention than Joe Arpaio, former sheriff of Maricopa County in Arizona, and Yvette Felarca, a leader of the violent “By Any Means Necessary” group in California. Both are tough-talking, no-nonsense types who will make sure things get done at the convention or they’ll bust some heads to know the reasons why. Like Archie and the Meathead on All intheFamily, they are opposite sides of the same coin, though not nearly as many laughs.
All in the Family reminds us that politics colors nearly everything in life, like it or not.
Here are some highlights of the Alternative Constitution:
Amendment 1 – Congress shall make no some law[s] respecting an establishment of [a certain] religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof [of some of them]; or abridging the freedom of speech [for some people], or of the [not fake news] press; or the right of the [certain] people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances [of some people].
Amendment 2 – A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, [T]he right of the people to keep and bear Arms [lots of them; high powered semi-automatics, too], shall not be infringed.
Amendment 4 – The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not [sometimes] [often] be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable [almost any] cause, supported by [sometimes secret] Oath or affirmation, and particularly [vaguely] describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized [and locked away for good!].
Article 1, Section 9, Clause 8 – No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no [non orange and non bigly] Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument [except rental income and business favors], Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince or foreign State.
Cactus with flowers, a true gift of Arizona.
Pretty good, huh? Feel free to alter the text yourself, and to print it out in ALL CAPS, if that suits your political bent. Nothing gets a point across like YELLING, after all. The Dated Constitution, or DC, will be kept around in the National Archives, where tourists can gawk at it and scholars can squabble about the nuances of its language. The late Justice Antonin Scalia, who soon may have a federal courthouse named after him in Charlottesville, Virginia, cleared the way for interpreting our most important national document by underscoring that freewheeling activist judicial decisions are BAD, except when rendering a judgment in a case such as Bush v. Gore, which was GOOD, and not activist at all. (To which Justice Clarence Thomas might have added, were he to speak, “Ditto!”) No worries then with the Alternative Constitution, or AC, which will be the document of record for folks like University of California-Davis campus cop Lieutenant John Pike and the eloquent Zack Fisher of Phoenix, Arizona, both stout defenders of freedom against the despicable encroachments of sniveling protesters and pushy brown immigrants. Thanks to Arizona’s new law, all these paid protesters will soon get their comeuppance when they try their shenanigans in The Grand Canyon State, and Supreme Leader at the helm in Washington is sure to have Arizona’s back, regardless of what activist so-called judges may have to say about it.