American Propaganda

news stationsDid you know that the FBI creates broadcasts that mimic news reports, and disseminates them via ABC news, itunes, and other internet media? According to the Daily Signal, these reports often do not clearly identify the broadcast as a government issued broadcast, that has been made with tax dollars, and paints the FBI in a positive light. The reports are surrounded by similar sounding segments that are not U.S. government made propaganda.

With public agencies in the quasi-news business, should their products also carry a disclosure to avoid the same confusion? Should they clearly tell listeners that the message is generated using their tax dollars?

“The only thing we’re promoting is public awareness so, no, I don’t think there is a need for a label,” the FBI’s McKee told me. “Within each program the narrator clearly identifies herself as an FBI employee and the programs are found on official FBI sites/pages.”

In fact, in the Aug. 15 story on “FBI This Week,” the narrator doesn’t clearly identify herself as an FBI employee. The segment follows a typical news format where the reporter signs off with the location of the assignment and the title of the feature. But to those who are listening closely, the positive message is the clue that there’s a government sponsor.

So it got me thinking, if this is the propaganda we know about, what are we hearing from “non-government sources” that is actually indeed, just propaganda? The fact that the U.S. government feeds U.S. citizens bulk lies is not controversial. Operation Mockingbird is a documented government program that had thousands of mainstream journalists on U.S. government pay since 1953 and included publications like the Washington Post, Time Magazine, People Magazine, and Newsweek to name a few. And just recently documents show that the U.S. government currently seeks to influence public opinion via social media, with paid “trolls” to comment on news articles, and insert their ideas or misinformation or just confusion into Facebook and twitter. To what extent are we influenced by lies, useful for and propagated by the U.S. government?

What if the propaganda was so bad that “facts” about countries like North Korea, Iran, and Cuba were not really facts? I don’t actually think it goes that deep, but it does make me wonder. With so little travel to the three countries by Americans, it is conceivable that certain misconceptions could be easily construed by our own government, posing as media. But as always, the bottom line is: never trust the government.

The Elizabeth Warren Hype Escalates

This past April I wrote an article suggesting we would begin to see Elizabeth Warren touted in the news as a 2016 Democrat Presidential nominee favorite, and viable alternative to Hillary Clinton.

But why bring up this old issue of the insulting statements made by the President and one random Senator? Because this “random Senator” is shaping up to “pull an Obama” in 2016. Remember how you had never heard of Obama, and then all of the sudden the freshman Senator from Illinois was the President? He had not even been a Senator for 4 years when he was elected President, and the media made a bigger deal about the Republican Vice Presidentialcandidate’s short tenure as Governor of Alaska. The 2008 election was not about women, it was about race. And anyway, conservative women are not victims of the “war on women”.

It was all about race. If you didn’t like Obama, well you were just harboring racist feelings. And its not Fast and Furious, or the refusal to prosecute black panthers, or his career as a Wall Street defense attorney, or his investigations of reporters that made you dislike Attorney General Eric Holder, its just because he is black. But that card has been warn out over the past 6 years, and the “war on women” rhetoric has heated up. This strategy is out of the same playbook:make the establishment seem anti-establishment by playing the victim. A vote for Obama was “a vote against racism”. And this time around the Democratic nominee will garner “votes against sexism”. And naturally the pick would be Hillary Clinton; after all she is crazy far ahead in the polls, a strong independent woman, and everyone knows her name.

But there’s a hushed buzz running through the Democratic party and liberal circles that suggests Elizabeth Warren could “pull an Obama”, come out of nowhere and be the next President before we know what hit us. This is what happened with Obama and the media love fest surrounding him, and drowning out any critics. The old cry from the sheep herd of “four legs good, two legs bad” had turned into “four legs good, two legs better” within just a few nights. His lack of experience was not a concern, even though Palin (again the media focus being on the GOP Vice Presidential candidate) had more executive experience than Obama.

Now, 3 months later, when “Elizabeth Warren” is searched on Google news, 8 of the first 10 articles are about a potential run for President in 2016 by the Senator from Massachusetts. It just seems strange to me that Democrats are so eager to pick first term Senators for their Presidential nominees.

My main problem with Warren is her typical politician dishonesty, as well as her outright hatred for the free market, and indeed businesses in general. Her attitude is that government solves problems, government is the only way to grow the economy, and that since people are bad we need to keep them in check with a government made up of people.

I’m not sure “the people” pick the President anymore. The media pretty much take their orders from above, and turn that into public opinion. People think that Warren would reign in Wall Street, but that is absurd! The only reason Wall Street has power is because they are in a crony capitalist relationship with the government. And Warren’s solution is more government regulation! I don’t understand how people could be so naive.

That’s why the only reason I would support a Presidential candidate is if I actually think they would reduce the size of government, and the power government has over our lives. If there is someone who would deescalate the police state, stop nation building, and make the market free by taking subsidies, grants, bailouts, and loans off the table, I would support them. But I am starting to think that might be too much to hope for in this day and age.

Media Subtley Shapes Our Views, even when it isn’t obvious

When Democrats criticized Bush for real failures, for instance when then Senator Barack Obama said, “After seven years of an Administration that has stretched our military to the breaking point, ignored deplorable conditions at some VA hospitals, and neglected the planning and preparation necessary to care for our returning heroes, America’s veterans deserve a President who will fight for them not just when it’s easy or convenient, but every hour of every day for the next four years”, those Democrats were just looking out for the best interests of Americans, out of real concern. But Republicans pointing out failures of President Obama want only to selfishly “use the incidents at the hospitals as fodder for a broader political theme about incompetence in his administration”.

In this example it is subtle, but the media relentlessly molds their message to portray Republicans negatively. Otherwise, this would simply be Republicans rightfully criticizing Obama for failures in Veterans Affairs which caused Veterans to die while the buck stops at Obama. But Democrats have real concern for women’s health, and gay rights, and reducing violence–unlike those damn Republicans who just want to score political points! How shameful, using dead Veterans as “fodder” for an election! When Democrats used dead children as fodder for elections, they really cared.

Watch most mainstream news stations and read mainstream articles, and when you look for it, you see it. Democrats” concerns are given real attention, while Republican concerns are always cast as what is best for politics and winning elections. But I am not so much defending Republicans as condemning the media–both Republicans and Democrats shamelessly use terrible government actions as fodder for their re-election, and both Republicans and Democrats from time to time have real concern for the citizens if the US. And I don’t claim to know which one this case represents, and it is probably different for each individual offering criticism of the President.

But one thing I do know is that the media will relentlessly portray Republicans as selfishly acting out of political prudence, and Democrats selflessly acting for the greater good. The real story here is that politics is broken, and the government is incompetent. The Veterans need to be taken care of, because that was the deal when they put themselves in harms way. But to turn around and have the same failure of a government administer healthcare for the entire nation when they cannot even take care of the health of the people who protect this nation, is absurd. Even if Obamacare had the best intentions, which is does not, there is no chance of this government running a program of that size, magnitude, and importance appropriately.

It is time to drastically rethink our idea of the role the federal government should play in our lives. The federal government should not be something constantly on our minds, and on our backs. It was never meant to be a daily player in citizens lives, and a Constitutionally constrained government would return us to that paradigm.

Governing by Lies

It just seems like every time I read the news there are just two sides shouting back and forth at each other. “Get over Benghazi” some journalists say, as if Republicans were harping on a lost football game. Never mind that the Obama administration literally lied to the face of every American for 2 weeks about what caused the diplomats’ deaths, when they knew very well the real reasons. We are starting to get at those reasons, but they are still fuzzy because of hidden witnesses, and a more competent effort to cover up the story than to protect American ambassadors. “All politicians lie”. A) That’s a problem. B) That doesn’t give Obama a free pass. C) Obama lies even more than the other politicians and with greater negative consequences to individuals and America as a whole.

Another lie used to “govern”, if you can even call it that, is the recent report that came out from the White House about the impending doomsday brought on by global warming, or global cooling, or climate change, or extreme weather conditions—or whatever, humans caused it, earth is doomed, shut up. This winter when it snowed for a week straight I didn’t sit there and say, “see no global warming”, because I live in New England. I didn’t even use the snowstorm in North Carolina that I drove through in February to argue against global warming! Yet the President claims in an “official” report that extreme weather conditions are getting worse.

No, they’re not, and this science is even easier to prove. It is simply, are there more hurricanes, or fewer? Do they cause more damage, or less? As opposed to, “we have definitely isolated the human variable and know that it is the sole cause of climate change, despite the billions of years of changing climates before humans, and despite the millions of other variables that effect global temperatures, and its a sin to even suggest that maybe the science isn’t settled. Oh and if you disagree with us, then you are actually denying science, not debating the facts and methods used to form the conclusions, and you also believe the earth is 4,000 years old.”

But then the administration also has a well trained offensive line to keep them from being sacked, and we call them the media. Every decade Indiana University does a survey of 1,000 journalists. This time around, 28% are Democrats, and “At 7.1 percent last year, America’s newsrooms housed a lower percentage of Republicans than San Francisco (8.4 percent).”

The rest are supposedly independent or aligned with some other political party. Yet in 1992 89% of Washington correspondents voted for Bill Clinton. So the liberal bias is pretty obvious. But it is more than bias, sometimes it is downright lies, and sometimes worse, leaving out the truth completely.

Examples: NBC edited an audio recording of George Zimmerman to make it seem like he volunteered the information, “looks like he’s black” to the 911 operator, when in reality, she asked Trayvon Martin’s race. Regardless of your opinion on that whole matter, journalists should not be editing recordings to make someone seem more racist to fit their agenda.

Chris Matthews towed the line for weeks that “it was the video” that caused the “riot” outside of the American embassy in Benghazi when the Americans were murdered. Good job doing your job and looking into facts Chris.

Joe the plumber was vetted more than President Obama when Obama responded to his concern with, “When you spread the wealth around, its good for everybody”. Did you know Joe the plumber once got a DUI? Did you know all of Obama’s academic and financial records from college are sealed?

How about the media missing the story about the ATF running guns across the Mexican border in operation “Fast and Furious”. Most Americans think Vin Diesel was somehow involved. Nope it was Eric Holder probably; we don’t know because Obama exerted executive privilege over documents subpoenaed by congress.

And then there are the classic media pieces where absolutely no journalism is practiced as in, “Well the bill says Affordable Care Act, so I guess it makes care affordable. Criticize every opponent of it as hating that Americans have access to healthcare”. Or who could forget the classic, “Well guns are scary, and these politicians say gun control will help, so forget the Harvard Study, the CDC report, and countless years and pages of examples and facts regarding the ineffectiveness of gun control, and detriment to personal security “gun free zones” and gun bans have caused, lets just pretend everyone against gun control loves to watch children die”. How can we even call these people journalists? They are essentially human microphones for politicians.

This is just the tip of the iceberg. I’ve missed thousands upon thousand of examples of the media outright lying, and covering up the truth. And I’ve missed thousands examples of the Obama administration lying and refusing to acknowledge the truth. But the point is, a government should not be run on lies. Lies should not be the main tool used to “get things done”. We need to hold the media and politicians to a higher standard, instead of letting apathy take over and giving in to, “Eh, all politicians are terrible”. Well that is a problem! They are literally deciding the fate of the world, and yet we can’t be bothered to participate in the government by and for the people, as much as we participate in forming brackets for college basketball?

What an opportunity Americans were given at the birth of this nation, and what squandering of that blessing today occurs!

Always Research “the other side’s” Claims

The media is biased; everyone knows this, yet somehow people still think they know who lies to them and who doesn’t. The left will use Fox news as the crazy right wing media, and the right will use… well pretty much every other TV media outlet. But how did we get to the point where articles are written that simply brush off things like Benghazi and Solyndra as not news worthy? I just read an article–albeit by a former Clinton employee–that casually mentions how “the right wing” keeps bringing up Benghazi and Solyndra while the mainstream media apparently sees nothing to carry the story about. This insinuates that the mainstream media would carry the story if it were true, and thus suggests that there is no reason to cover these events. Meanwhile a missing aircraft gets 24/7 coverage.

And it does play both ways; I was too young to vote during most of the Bush years, but still I mostly assumed all the protests from the left were unwarranted. Yet today I realize that many good objections were raised about the Patriot Act, the reasons for going to war in the middle east, and the concentration of power in the executive branch. These days I realize that these were not “left wing” stories, but in the divide perpetuated by the media and politicians, it was easy to brush off opposing views as lies from the “other side”. So now with a liberal president, I think many on the left brush off things like Benghazi as the right just making noise, while in fact there was a campaign of lies and cover-ups put forth by the State Department and Executive branch.

As for Solyndra, the loan was not simply a mess up: it was given to an Obama bundler in a manner which was irresponsible and unprecedented. But unless those facts come out, most on the left just assume the story is full of right wing lies. And this has been the strategy of the media and political elites to gain power by dividing the masses. Now it is always “my news source” that is right, and the “other one” cherry picks the data, or ignores actual corruption. It is important to always look into things, try to get different sources, and see if you can triangulate the truth. One quote could be taken out of context, and many media outlets purposely skew things to depict “their side” as right. They also just repeat the name of a bill in congress, and act like it will do exactly what it is purported to do. Analysis is out, whatever the politician says is fact, when we know quite the opposite is almost always the case.

So rather then play into the “us against them” philosophy exploited by politicians, it is better to discuss the differences in opinions, when possible. Sometimes there are people who will not listen, but there are plenty of others who just haven’t heard the facts. If you start discussing these little covered stories and the facts, many people might be surprised to hear them, and then do their own research. But always coming off as calm and collected when discussing regularly divisive issues is certainly a way to get your point considered, more-so than going off the deep end and getting angry.

TV Needs to Move to the Internet, Cable is Outdated

antennaAfter writing about the Comcast Time Warner merger and the corruption involved in the FCC, it really seems to me that the proper way for people like you and me to sidestep this situation is to use the internet. It’s a little funny to me that the internet is not used for more—we are still using cell towers to make phone calls when Skype and other programs are free to the user. People can currently buy data for tablets without needing to pay for a phone number, and if that doesn’t work you could buy a hotspot transmitter. There is also free wi-fi countless places, and I’m sure there would be plenty of people willing to give away wi-fi for a little advertising revenue, doing away with cell towers all together.

So this same situation could be used for cable TV alternatives, and already is. I’m sure you have heard of the popularity of Netflix which has even come out with some of its own series. Hulu, HBO-GO, and Amazon all have versions of streaming TV as well, which are gaining popularity though somewhat limited still in their programing. Of course these are the types of situations—competition—Comcast tried to avoid by buying off politicians to influence the FCC. They aren’t going to go down easily, but the more aware we are of the situation, the easier it will be for us to fight regulations that Comcast would love to see, forcing the costs they already incur on all broadcasters.

And that is why the company Aero is being sued by ABC for renting out antennas which capture broadcasts made on public airwaves. The Supreme Court arguments all center around whether this is a public performance or a private performance, and therefore whether or not the copyright fees need to be paid to each channel being broadcast. But the broadcasts are still being made on public airwaves, so it seems to me that whoever has the capability to collect those waves should be allowed to do so, like turning on a radio.

CBS and Fox have warned that if Aereo wins, they would have to consider getting out of the broadcasting business. Last year, 21st Century Fox Chief Operating Officer Chase Carey said Fox Broadcasting could be converted to a cable channel if its distribution fees were in jeopardy.

CBS Chief Executive Leslie Moonves has also floated the going-cable scenario and more recently suggested the network could launch its own Internet-delivered version of its network should the high court side with Aereo.

Woah, wait a minute! You mean if technology advances a company might have to adapt in order to figure out a way to still turn a profit?!?! Ridiculous! Call in the guns and kill the competition with the FCC or the Supreme Court or an act of Congress! But sarcasm aside, who cares? Everyone knows the internet is the future of broadcast, and the sooner companies like Comcast and Time Warner go down in flames, the better. It is insane to me that broadcast companies don’t already stream their channels over the internet, and charge for a subscription, or sell to a package bundler.

But this actually gives us some insight into why they are not already doing that. Right now, broadcasters have a “protected” business where they make billions every year on fees paid to them by companies like Comcast and Time Warner. So they are worried that they won’t be able to collect those fees while still using public airwaves, and Comcast is worried that people won’t have to put up with their extortion if TV moves to the internet, which the FCC and government has less of a regulatory stranglehold on. In short, these broadcast companies must appeal to the government to kill their competition, or adapt to a better business model which fits 21st century consumer demand.

And it is about time that customers see some competition among broadcasters and finally reclaim the upper hand. With the internet, things are so much more competitive. What we will see is some terrible propaganda cable and broadcast channels die out as people are not forced to pay for them in a bundle with the TV channels they do watch. The good channels which people like will survive and thrive on the internet, and the bad ones will properly go the way of the dinosaurs. And we will see much more original content being created by companies like Netflix. Since it is not public broadcasting the FCC will have no power to regulate it, and therefore will have no ability to crush some businesses and prop up others, as it currently does

What is more, YouTube channels and independent news sources will become even more mainstream, and the government’s ability to shut out some news and make up other news will be greatly diminished. Competition is a good thing for the consumer, and right now competition in TV is rising once again through the internet, and has the potential to destroy the puppet media by diversification. Let’s hope the Supreme Court finds what Aero is doing to be legal, and helps propel the future of TV onto the internet. Then we might find out what the media looks like when it is not all owned by the same handful of people.

Puppet Media and the Pulling of Their Strings for 2016

Since Barack Obama came onto the political scene about 9 years ago, there seems to have been a resurgence of the old progressive liberal agenda that hadn’t enjoyed such vigor since the days of Woodrow Wilson and FDR. Other left wing figures in between were more coy about their goals, or in fact were not so hostile to the free market and individual rights. John F. Kennedy spoke out against raising taxes in a recession, touting lower tax rates as good for the economy. JFK was also a member of the NRA. Oh how things have changed.

We now have a President, and I unfortunately have a Senator, who openly ridicule job creators, insisting that their success was not due to their own hard work, but instead to the government, or luck, or some mixture. I’m talking of course about President Obama’s and Senator Warren’s similar remarks about how business owners “didn’t build that” and how “the rest of us” paid for the roads on which their goods were moved. Roads are important to businesses, but the idea that businesses couldn’t survive without government providing them roads is ridiculous. The first railroads in Great Britain were all built and run by competing private companies, and the first highway in Alaska was a private toll road. Businesses will find a way to move their goods, but what this Senator and President believe is that businesses should thank government for confiscating their money, and spending some of it on a road.

And as for the whole thing about “the rest of us” paying for the roads: corporations pay a 35% tax rate; the President, CEO, CFO, and all the employees of the company pay taxes out of their salary from the company; when moving the goods on the roads, the company is paying gas taxes; when buying the materials they need the company pays taxes, and that money being spent at other businesses will be taxed again. If the business increases in value, the stockholders and investors are taxed  on the capital gain. So who exactly is “the rest of us”? More likely, “the rest of us” have some of the company’s tax dollars spent on the goodies the politicians hand out for votes. Why else would our government be so concerned about assets and businesses based offshore? We wouldn’t want them here if it was just going to cost us more money to pave more roads for their benefit. Obviously the government wants their tax dollars, and thus understands that businesses pay for their own roads in effect. So let me be clear, crony capitalists and politicians are sitting back on the yacht that the rest of us paid for.

But why bring up this old issue of the insulting statements made by the President and one random Senator? Because this “random Senator” is shaping up to “pull an Obama” in 2016. Remember how you had never heard of Obama, and then all of the sudden the freshman Senator from Illinois was the President? He had not even been a Senator for 4 years when he was elected President, and the media made a bigger deal about the Republican Vice Presidential candidate’s short tenure as Governor of Alaska. The 2008 election was not about women, it was about race. And anyway, conservative women are not victims of the “war on women”.

It was all about race. If you didn’t like Obama, well you were just harboring racist feelings. And its not Fast and Furious, or the refusal to prosecute black panthers, or his career as a Wall Street defense attorney, or his investigations of reporters that made you dislike Attorney General Eric Holder, its just because he is black. But that card has been warn out over the past 6 years, and the “war on women” rhetoric has heated up. This strategy is out of the same playbook: make the establishment seem anti-establishment by playing the victim. A vote for Obama was “a vote against racism”. And this time around the Democratic nominee will garner “votes against sexism”. And naturally the pick would be Hillary Clinton; after all she is crazy far ahead in the polls, a strong independent woman, and everyone knows her name.

But there’s a hushed buzz running through the Democratic party and liberal circles that suggests Elizabeth Warren could “pull an Obama”, come out of nowhere and be the next President before we know what hit us. This is what happened with Obama and the media love fest surrounding him, and drowning out any critics. The old cry from the sheep herd of “four legs good, two legs bad” had turned into “four legs good, two legs better” within just a few nights. His lack of experience was not a concern, even though Palin (again the media focus being on the GOP Vice Presidential candidate) had more executive experience than Obama.

Fittingly, my favorite scene from the musical Chicago is when the lawyer plays the press like marionette puppets to seed the idea that his (very guilty) client is innocent of murder. At one point he says that the crime is “understandable, understandable”—a line repeated minutes later by a popular reporter. By the end of the number, all of the marionette reporters are repeating falsely that “they both reached for the gun”.

So who is pulling the puppet strings, we can’t be sure, but the video of the Chicago musical number is a good visual to think of anytime you hear a strangely harmonized chorus coming from the press. We are hearing whispers that some on the left wish Obama could sound more like Warren. Hillary Clinton had double the poll numbers of Barack Obama at this time before the 2008 presidential race. And as for the “war on women”, she can’t play the victim. The “war on women” meme doesn’t work so well when someone as extremely successful and powerful as Hillary Clinton is supposedly exploited. Everyone already thinks of her as controlling Bill Clinton when he was in the White House, so for the left’s intents and purposes, she cannot be the first woman president. She already broke the glass ceiling. But someone who is newer to the scene could still provide the wave of support to finally prove America has overcome its sexism, and install a “main street” American woman in the White House.

Anything that brings emotion into an argument is good for a liberal trying to win an election. The emotion surrounding racial issues in America helped people both ignore Obama’s lack of experience, and later ignore his failures and scandals as president, prompted by the media reaction (or lack of reaction) to each of those things. Likewise the emotion surrounding women’s issues will be exploited this next election, in order to take the debate away from the dishonesty of the candidate, questions about scandals that went unanswered, or logical shortcomings of the political platform. The left has been trying out their “war on women” meme for a couple elections now, finely tuning it to shift the focus of voters away from Obamacare and the economy. As this unfolds, it will be interesting to see what the puppet media does, and perhaps by tracing the strings back to the controlling hands, we can have a shot at exposing the puppeteer and his same old political song and dance.

Dezinformatsia!

Do you picture propaganda as a distant tool of authoritarian governments? Do you assume that information you receive is generally accurate, only perhaps otherwise influenced by an individual’s personal bias or worldview? Do you reject the idea that there is a coherent movement in our government to shape our views in particular ways that make us dance like puppets to fulfill the government’s purpose? Well unfortunately today propaganda in the Soviet dezinformatsia style is alive and well in America.

I’m currently reading the book “American Betrayal” by Diana West about the far reaching effects of Soviet propaganda on Americans, forced on us by collusive agents in our own government and American media. So well orchestrated and effective was this propaganda, that we still think of McCarthy as the perpetrator of a “witch hunt”. But witches aren’t real, and communist spies infiltrating the American government and media was real.

To this day, because of Soviet propaganda, we think that McCarthy was just some nut who wanted to suppress freedom of speech by blacklisting people who called themselves communist, and had committed no crime. In reality McCarthy was seeking to root out actual communist spies on the payroll of the Soviet Union who had infiltrated every branch of government and every element of the media. At one time these spies controlled Hollywood, the CIA, newspapers, and even the White House. Because of this, America’s would be savior is considered a pariah, and the communist spies fulfilled their mission, all while playing the victim.

Today it may no longer be the Soviets who are infiltrating our government and media, but there are forces at work beyond personal biases in the media and incompetence in the government. The Daily Caller interviewed Ronald Rychlak who co-authored the book Disinformation “with the highest ranking Soviet bloc defector to come to the United States, Lt. Gen. Ion Mihai Pacepa”. He says that after the terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya he was amazed at the propaganda to come out of the White House that was then promoted by media for weeks before part of the real story came out—and we are still waiting for real answers on what happened that night, whose failures allowed the attack to take place, and the extent of the cover-up.

“The fact that there was even an effort to put forth that false story is a little bit shocking to me,” he said. “I don’t think they needed to do that. But it does suggest that there are folks in Washington, D.C. who were trying very hard to cover up some stuff that we still probably haven’t gotten completely to the bottom of.”

Rychlak also expressed concerns over Christians being labeled terrorists by certain elements in the American government, simply because of the social views they express. Yet though a disproportionate amount of recent terrorists have been Muslim, today our media and government tells us it is wrong to “profile”. But our own government has profiled Tea Party folks as terrorists, despite their ideas being taken directly from the founders of this country!

“It’s wrong for an individual to discredit people on that basis” of social issues, he said. “It’s really wrong for the government to label those folks as terrorists, deny them benefits, to spy upon them, to do a lot of things that have been happening and that really are very disconcerting about the United States today.”

The first step to recovery is realizing we have a problem. Turn off the TV, view multiple sources online, and critically think for yourself.

Grunwald: Big Government Can Solve All Problems/ Should Kill Julian Assange

We all know from watching TV news that the right is violent, angry, and vengeful, while the left is open-minded, peace-loving, and accepting. But one reporter didn’t seem to get the memo, as the liberal confessed he couldn’t wait for the drone assassination of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, so that he could write a piece defending the strike. Perhaps that was Michael Grunwald’s reaction to the praise Assange poured on Ron and Rand Paul as being the last hope for America, or Assange’s statement that the libertarian aspect of the Republican party is the only useful voice in congress. One thing is for certain, that Grunwald has added yet another piece of anecdotal evidence to the argument that liberals can in fact be hateful and intolerant of their political opponents, as the media (which Grunwald is a part of) often claims of conservatives. According to the Daily Caller, the following was tweeted by Michael Grunwald.

grunwald

Obviously anyone could be hateful and call for the death of what they see as their political enemies, but I don’t like that liberals often get a pass on this one, as if the Tea Party are the militants the media portrays them as, and liberals just want world peace. Wishing for a drone strike to take out Julian Assange, who has alerted the world public to abuses of power by the U.S. government, is not a very tolerant attitude. What people forget about liberals like Grunwald is that for them, the ends justify the means; it doesn’t matter how much evil happens in the pursuit of utopia, because the evil is necessary to bring about good. This of course includes the belief that a utopia can be brought about on earth.

Personally I believe that the Constitution laid out a very good system of government. But often liberals will frame an argument by showing flaws in a system, and claiming to know the solution, while ignoring flaws in the alternative system they put forward. For instance many will criticize capitalism for injustices and inequality which the system allows, without bringing up the fact that capitalism is a means for providing as many people as possible with the food, clothing, and shelter they need. But for the liberals they do not have to put a legitimate solution forward, they just have to point out the weaknesses in the current system. Could there be something better than capitalism? Sure, but until that system is designed and explained logically, I have to believe that capitalism should remain the dominant economic system.

Without realizing it many liberals are in favor of a statist solution, crony capitalism where the government can regulate the economy as opposed to the free market regulating the economy. They want a strong government that will eliminate criminals so that no one is victimized, and never make a false arrest. But in their arguments for a strong centralized big government, they use the best case scenario. They argue as if every member of the government will be moral and competent. They argue as if it would be impossible for some evil sociopath to come to power and fulfill his ulterior motives. It becomes not an assessment of which system would work better, but an argument for a utopia, against a system with flaws. The flaws in their own system are ignored.

Capitalism it is said, is controlled by the 1% (which would be about 3 million Americans). Big government however is controlled by 535 members of congress, 17 executives including the President, and 9 supreme court justices. That is .000187% of Americans in control, instead of 1%. Even if you include the 2.6 million bureaucrats in the government control scenario, it is still less than 1% (only .87%) controlling the economy. In reality, in a free market system 100% of the people would control the economy, because only pieces of the economy that the market (and individuals making up the market) demands, would exist.

And the same reporter who wishes to defend a drone assassination on his political “enemy”, wrote a defense of big government earlier this year. In it Grunwald claims it is only big government standing in the way of rampant terrorism, regular mass shootings, unsafe working and living conditions, and discrimination. He says that individual rights need to be balanced with the government’s ability to quell these impending disasters which the free market would hoist upon us. Obviously the government needs to be even bigger than it is now to solve these problems, which still exist in a country with a government that uses a quarter of the entire production of our country to govern. And apparently Grunwald thinks that corruption, misallocation of resources, or human error will not be a problem when the government is big enough to protect us from everything scary about the world.

We know our government is fallible, because it’s made up of people, but we still count on it to protect us from terrorists, from psychos with guns, from exploding factories. We also need it to protect us from floods and wildfires, from financial meltdowns and climate change. We can’t do that kind of thing ourselves.

And how’s the track record on that so far? The last financial meltdown was caused by the government. Benghazi, the Marathon, Aurora, Newton, an exploding factory and wildfires have all happened within a year, when the government is bigger then it ever has been. Do we just need it to be a little bigger? Have a little more power? Take a little more taxes? People like Grunwald pretend the government can do what it cannot, and pretend the private sector can’t do what it has always done: respond to a market demand. In a free market if people demand protection from those things, someone seeking profit will supply a solution. The “evil” incentive of profit gets things done, while the “noble” government has nothing but the voters to enforce its responsibilities. When we vote with our dollars to get things done, the resources are directed in the most beneficial places according to what each individual wants to spend their money on. When we vote for politicians we are tricked with our own money into supporting and paying for things we would never consciously put a dollar towards on our own.

In Grunwald’s narrative the government is only big where it needs to be big: catching and questioning terrorists, preventing market failures (LOL), making sure only the government has “assault weapons designed for mass slaughter”. We are all just helpless individuals who could never organize ourselves enough to protect against our scary world. And the government will only suspend the rights of terrorists, will only prevent criminals from protecting themselves, will only strike down the evil corporations and there could never be any unintended victims.

Grunwald saved his “using-dead-children-to-make-you-feel-bad-if-you-disagree” tactic for the last couple paragraphs. It is so easy when there’s a name attached to the victim. Look at these dead kids who prove the flaws in our imperfect system, and ignore the millions of unnamed victims under our utopian government system. This is the mindset of the people who write your news, who run your government: look only at this one section of the story and never at the whole picture. Look only at these lives lost, and not at net lives saved. It is a good tactic for arguing for the support of the ignorant masses. It is a bad tactic if you actually want to make the world a better place.

Political Cartoons

TEA Party stands for Taxed Enough Already. You might not know that if you listen to all the people who drink the Mainstream Media Kool-aide. The problem is not that the government is short on funds, the problem is that they spend too much, and there is room for cuts everywhere.

teakool

 

And the following essentially sums up the U.S. spending policy, exacerbated by Obama’s policies. It’s okay, our grandchildren can pay for it (but we’re the selfish ones!).

value