The knights are restless and for good reason.

Archive for the month “May, 2013”

Media Madness

Well, there’s always something keeping the Restless Knight restless. This time it’s the sudden surge in attacks on the Administration by the folks of Fair and Balanced, AKA Fox News. One of my favorite broadcasters, Harry Shearer, calls them “Fox Noise,” but that gives ‘noise’ a bad name. Garbage trucks make noise, but at least we have been warned about just what they carry.

The latest onslaught began when national polls started indicating the popularity of Hillary Clinton for President in ’16. Obama’s current term is only a little over 100 days old, and we couldn’t wait for the last election to be over. But people are talking about the 20 freaken 16! I guess they just can’t wait to have Billary back in the White House, because something interesting always happens when Billary is in the Presidential Palace. According to most experts, the Clintons have been rated Most Favored Couple, easily out-scoring Brangalina.

So there have been unceasing attacks against the State Department for its failure to prevent the Benghazi debacle; not just from Fox, but from the other alleged news sources, such as NBC’s Get Depressed, and CBS’s Disgrace the Nation. Let me not forget to mention ABC’s Sunday alleged attempt at journalism, This Week with a Chaney or a McCain.

Representative Darrell Issa, (R) of California

Representative Darrell Issa, (R) of California

Here’s what is so restless making: You can’t get much done if you don’t provide funding to government agencies to do the work they were mandated to accomplish. For example, you cannot P much E if the EPA don’t get no pay. You can’t police food suppliers for health violations if any excuse will do to deny funding the FDA. This also holds true for the IRS. Take away their budget and the only culprits they can afford to go after are the little schmucks. The well-resourced mega-corporations are too insulated by legal staffs, rivaling Attila’s hordes, to have any thought of paying their fair share.

Some of the biggest critics of the Administration’s handling of security at the Libyan site are the very ones voting to defund the department responsible for that security. It’s like hiring police officers to quell rioters that carry AK47s while armed with peashooters, and then blaming the cops for their failure to stop the riot. Thank you GOP Congressman Issa for your defunding efforts, but for some reason you get re-elected in one of the bluest of American States. Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz also voted to cut security finding, but he’s from Utah, where nobody believes in bullshit.

I find this criticism of Obama’s security weaknesses by right wing politicians, and their backers on television networks most interesting. Where were they when GWB oversaw some of the greatest fiascoes in American history? The first was ignoring quality information that Ben Laden was planning to attack the U.S. The second was not overseeing our most powerful security agencies such as the CIA and FBI to ensure that they were on the same page. Well, in order to do that, you have to talk to one another. And what about terrorist, Mohamed Atta, who steered that commandeered jet into the World Trade Center, having been on a watch list, and then receiving his pilot’s license posthumously. Nothing curious about a guy learning to fly a plane at pilot school in the U.S.A. and choosing to skip the optional “landing” courses?

Then there was that little skirmish in Iraq, for no other reason than Cheney having it earmarked as one of the richest sources of

He's the Decider

He’s the Decider

petroleum in the world, and ripe for the taking. Guaranteed, that if olive oil were Iraq’s main export, there wouldn’t have been a war in the first place. But George sure looked good, landing on that carrier deck to announce victory (slightly prematurely).

The media having been taken over by less than objective management is probably causing Edward R. Murrow and his boss, William S. Paley to turn over in their graves. When Mr. Paley ran Columbia Broadcasting, he declared the delivery of the news to be a loss leader for the network. He would provide real journalism to the public in exchange for their loyalty. That business model is now as extinct as the dodo bird, and that’s not the only similarity media news shares with that unfortunate creature.

There were failures in the protection of embassy staff leading to the tragic death of Chris Stevens and others. The facts surrounding the event need to be brought to the fore, because we have a right to know how our government conducts itself, and protects our civil servants. But shouldn’t that be done by true journalists, getting all the facts, and not just media organizations staking the “we were first” claim.

It’s especially disturbing that the event is being muckraked chiefly by a network whose favoritism toward right-wing policies is no secret.

Jabba and the character on which he was based

Jabba and the character on which he was based – image by

In fact, Roger Ailes, Der Fuehrer of Fox News was exposed on tape, in an attempt to promote General David Patraeus for President, going so far as to offer to finance his campaign. Now that would have made news objective. And if that doesn’t make your nights restless, that delightful pair of brothers, the Koch’s are seeking to buy up media organizations on the cheap. They don’t control enough at present, and news media would be icing on their cake. No, things don’t always go better with Koch.

So Hillary, I don’t know if you are planning a White House run, and Bill, if you are planning to be the First Gentleman, but you now have an early glimpse at what the campaign will be like.

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