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I Am Skooter
So here's us, on the raggedy edge.
Once there was a haunted loop / of your deep fallen tears / a forehead resting / on a record shelf
— A.C. Newman, There are Maybe 10 or 12
September 16, 2006
The Greatest Story Ever Sold

A good review at the New York Times of a book by Frank Rich called The Greatest Story Ever Sold

The central thesis of the book is that politics is more like the theatre every day. This should be obvious to anybody who’s paid close attention to modern political campaigns in North America — the Bush campaign isn’t so much ‘scripted’ as it is pre-recorded.

There’s much more than this wrong though.

That television — that cyclopean seductress of the thirty second attention span — has become addicted to the soundbite and sells political campaigns in the same manner as it sells pizza pops should come as no surprise. TV has long since stopped being good at communicating real information, at least in the current expensive production supported by advertising model.

What’s truly disturbing is alluded too by this comment:

Yet — and this is where Rich is particularly acute — most serious papers published the White House claims on their front pages, and buried any doubts in small news items at the back

The propensity for virtually all mainstream media to simply reprint what the White House calls news is a problem.

This is not limited simply to political news — open the business section of any newspaper, and check the content against press releases distributed directly by the company through Canada Newswire or PR Newswire. You’re likely to be shocked.

The days of Woodward and Bernstein have long since been left behind, and the news media these days is not much more than a machine for reprinting content.

Ask questions — it’s your duty always, but especially in the absence of effective news organizations.

Posted by skooter at 8:19 AM This entry is filed under Books, Politics.
This entry is tagged: George Bush, Reviews

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