Monday, June 18, 2018

The Mainstream Media Gets it Not Just Wrong, but Wrong as Wrong Can Be

(Paraphrased and embellished from a video by Evan Sayet, author of 'KinderGarden of Eden', which has been called 'the unified field theory of neo-liberalism')

The mainstream media (and neo-liberals, but I repeat myself) have replaced 'objectivity' with 'neutrality' when reporting on issues like the environment, race, religion, national origin, culture, not to mention life, the universe and everything.

Instead of being 'correct' we must be 'politically correct'. Instead of 'equal justice' (or just plain 'justice'), we must have 'social justice'. Instead of 'equal opportunity' we must have 'equal outcome'.

When we are objective about things, we can say that one thing is better than another, usually because an objectively better outcome results. We can still be objective about sports teams -- maybe not for very much longer -- but practically nothing else. Objectivity is based on analysis, testability, reproducible results, and logic.

Neutrality, on the other hand, forbids anyone from saying that one thing is better than another, because... well... it wouldn't be neutral. It wouldn't be 'fair'. It would be hurtful. It might point out that a scientific hypothesis, a culture, a political regime, or a religion, or a political regime wrapped in a religion, is inconsistent, or has self-destructive tendencies.

It's a side issue, but the ineptly named 'net neutrality', the government mandate that all internet traffic must be prioritized the same, regardless of its time sensitivity, monetary value, business model, or whatever, makes a lot more sense to me now, when looked at through the neutrality lens of the neo-liberal.

Anyone who makes objective observations these days is attacked viciously as a denier, as a racist, or some icky-phobe or another, despite that in most cases, pointing out that the Emperor has no clothes is probably a GoodThing(tm) for the Emperor, his onlookers and society in general.

So when the mainstream media reports news, and looks at the facts with neutrality instead of objectivity, their predictions, or the predictions we make from their coverage, ends up being the exact opposite of what actually happens. That's what I mean by "wrong as wrong can be". The conclusions that they draw, or that we draw from them, are as wrong as can be.

Were you surprised when the USSR collapsed? Herbert Meyer (special assistant to the Director of Central Intelligence and vice chairman of the CIA’s National Intelligence Council during the Reagan Administration) called it to the day. He was practically laughed right out of Washington, D.C. The mainstream media had a field day. Herb had the last laugh -- the media were as wrong as wrong can be. Right up until the end, the neutral mainstream media characterized the USSR as an equal superpower with the United States. They refused to acknowledge that we were winning the cold war, because to do that would admit that capitalism beats communism, and we're more successful than they were.

Were you surprised by the attacks on 9/11? Not the exact time and method; that probably would have been a surprise to anyone, but the fact that the attack took place. Why do they hate us? We deserved it? We were little Eichmanns? The chickens coming home to roost? Objective analysis would have (and did) provide all the answers. I'll get more specific below.

Were you surprised that Trump beat Hillary? You wouldn't have been if you were watching Fox News. Fox is reviled because it is 'disgustingly conservative'. Well, maybe if 'conservative' and 'objectivity' are related somehow. Fox does have mostly conservative commentators. I don't know what people are so afraid of, Fox news is the one outlier out of all the alphabet networks, (ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS), MSLSD, Chicken Noodle News, and all the wire feeds from all the other mainstream publications. The entertainment industry has been slathering it on with the neutrality trowel too. When it's coming at you from all sides but one, it's easy to be misled.

Are you surprised and outraged to hear that we are 'ripping families apart' at the border? If the news media were objective, they would note that abortion does that irreversibly. They would report that it is considered inhumane to incarcerate minors with adults, if those adults are illegal invaders. They would report that these policies haven't changed since the Obama administration, but that Obama unconstitutionally refused to enforce border policy enacted by Congress. They would note also that neo-liberal policies have been depriving minorities of their nuclear families and upward mobility for at least the past 50 years. How immoral is that?

But don't just take my word for it; we can run some (objective) tests. Here is a falsifiable hypothesis: The mainstream media are not just wrong, but wrong as wrong can be. It is testable. Of course, that would lead us to an objective conclusion, which might offend and confuse neo-liberals.

Here's the test: For each news media outlet, pick some big news stories and predict what you think will happen next, based on their coverage. Then see what actually happens, and score the results.

Here's another test*: Compare the life, lifestyle and teachings of Jesus Christ to the life, lifestyle and teachings of Mohammad, and then try to predict what the cultural effects of unrestricted, un-assimilated immigration might be. Not even a hard core atheist should have the slightest difficulty working that out -- if he's objective. But if he is neutral, then he will be very surprised about what happens in Europe now and in the next few years, and what happens in this country a few years after that. But a neo-liberal will call any objective predictions 'hate speech'. And you can forget about any policies to forestall the predictable outcome.

And one final test: What do you think will happen when people reject and mock our Judeo-Christian heritage, and Western Civilization as being no better than any other? How deliciously neutral. What about The Golden Rule? Hell, even a hard core atheist will agree that The Golden Rule is objectively better than just about any alternative. Anyone wondering why our culture has coarsened so severely over the last few decades might want to give that a cold, objective review. Extra credit: What philosophical dogma has dominated the media monopoly until fairly recently?

*And this test gets right down to the nitty-gritty. If you are a neo-liberal, more concerned with neutrality than objectivity, you will be viciously offended, and you will want to censor me, maybe destroy my career, ostracise me and my family, and the horse I rode in on, and slap a repulsive label on me.

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