Jul 8, 2012

ESSAY: Political News Bias, America's future, and "The Hunger Games"

 I was in the mass media news for some 20 years.We worked so hard in the 70s through 90s to be objective, fair. To educate in a time when the media wasn't just preoccupied with local ghetto crimes and fires. AND RATINGS.  Then, we were taught in school to sanitize our work from personal opinion, often by refusing to allow ourselves a personal opinion. 
Old timers like the CBS crowd that invented television news in the early 60s, lament that ethics are gone from today's journalism schools, now preoccupied with TV style, visuals, live-shots, ratings, and not responsibility.

Today, too many journalists have turned into propagandists for one side or another, or just mindlessly air both talking points to fill time between commercials.   No Truth investigations into what they say.

Critique:  Who's doing Truth Watch of what news makers say, if not the media?

The rest of the media, on cable and locally, are just trying to keep their jobs by superficially covering point-counterpoint talking points in a minute-twenty.  All this caused in great degree by cable news networks which have mixed opinion with facts in their programming.

Cable news calls itself  "The BEAST" because of its appetite for fresh meat to fill time, 24 hours a day, whether it's good meat or not!
  That's why they run insignifant stories from most anywhere into the ground, until something BETTER comes along.  And they always have an eye on their competitors to see what THEY'RE running.  Which is why tiresome white coed kidnapping stories with no new developments don't go away so easily.  Cable producers are too scared to let them go for DAYS, until viewers disappear in the ratings.

LOCAL NEWS is even worse because there's not much real news.
Sadly, those IN LOCAL NEWS at 5, 6, and 10/11pm will distract us with insignificant LOCAL isolated crimes rather than the big national/world stories of the day.    They'll run a local murder and some crying mother, while ignoring political stories affecting us ALL, or international stories of grave danger to us all.

Today's younger reporters hardly know their jobs.  They don't go after Truth, they just try to get 'both sides' and call it a day.  Giving no thought to who's lying because that takes RESEARCH and they aren't given time to do that on a daily basis by their cost-conscious bosses.

Utterly confused Americans laying in bed watching the news, weren't taught those distinctions well enough, back in high school citizenship class.   And they'd KINDA LIKE the media to do that work for them, given their connections back in Washington and at City hall.  But the media doesn't.  They just do the easy stuff they can gather between 9am when a story is 'decided'  an 5pm on the same day to get it on the air. 

Mass media, when not superficial like local TV, is alarmingly powerful.

We, who were IN it 30 years ago, know that well. Even though some worthy journalists tended to indulge our egos, and forget that over time. And some, who grew up with no ethics, always ignore that responsibility. Like handling guns and flying jetliners, flying high in a world-critical industry like the mass media, requires utmost respect for its power by those of us IN it.

The Hunger Games

I don't like it when people suggest I take time out to read THEIR favorite books. But there's one recent one, I'd share with you. Three fairly inexpensive books called "THE HUNGER GAMES"-- the FIRST of which is already a MOVIE, with a sequel in planning.

Hunger Games is about teens in a futuristic, nightmare political American environment. Drama, adventure, love, politics. A 'Scholastic' set of books. Easy reads for long drives and hot days inside.

Youthful bookworms have already read this controversial trilogy. All teens and young people should read them. So should we adults if we want to know what they're thinking.

You won't be able to put them down once you start. Go ahead and buy all three. "The Hunger Games", "Catching Fire", and "Mockingbird". Enjoy, and be forever changed in your perspective about the future and the hope we should have to change it.

Summary:  My conclusion is that the media isn't doing its job.  They're more interested in profits than saving the Nation!   Not at ALL in the Public Interest.   Maybe most local stations should get out of 'news' and just sell commercials inside of  situation comedies!  Because REAL NEWS costs them money~

No comments: