BREAKING: No Distraction (or Bait) Left Behind!

TUESDAY, JUNE 26, 2018

Yesterday's leading distraction:
We the people have lots of important matters to get clear about.

Take the Southern border. How many people could explain what the policy was, and how it worked, as of April 1 of this year?

Under the recent "Zero Tolerance" policy, how many kids got placed in those cages? How long were they in those cages, as opposed to more felicitous settings? Most important of all, have you seen any news org attempt to define and report the key question:

Is it possible that the federal government has actually "lost" some kids?

For ourselves, we haven't seen that question defined and reported in an authoritative way. Last Friday night, by way of contrast, we saw Lawrence O'Donnell spend the last half of his program clowning around with TV's Tom Arnold as that basic question went unaddressed.

(The clowning ate 21 minutes of "interview" time, commercial breaks not included.)

We're now a broken, entertainment-drenched, partisan culture in virtually every respect. The basic law of our entertainment-based journalism has become this:

No Distraction (or Bait) Left Behind!

Yesterday, the key, highly entertaining distraction involved Sarah Sanders' visit to the Red Hen. Let us tell you what we saw during two visits to the Washington Post's web site.

The first visit occurred around 3 PM. High up on the site's front page, we encountered these six headline/links. Because we care about your sanity, we aren't providing the links:
Post offerings around 3 PM Eastern:
The Fix: Maxine Waters shows why the Sanders-Red Hen story is extremely important

Trump takes aim at Waters after she calls for public harassment of his Cabinet

Analysis: Did restaurant violate Sanders’s rights when it kicked her out?

Did President Trump defame the Red Hen?

Rep. Waters on Trump administration: 'Tell them they’re not welcome'
Play Video

Virginia restaurant owner takes a stand against Sarah Sanders
Play Video
Around 3 PM, the Post was offering six different ways to explore this entertaining event. No distraction had been left behind!

We returned to the Post site around 6 PM. We found this new set of offerings, also high up on the site's front page:
Post offerings around 6 PM Eastern:
No, D.C.’s Red Hen didn’t ask Sarah Huckabee Sanders to leave. The restaurant is still taking heat.

‘NOT THAT RED HEN’: Critics slam distant eateries with similar names and logos

The greatest threat from the Red Hen flare-up has nothing to do with civility

Think before you mob (an op-ed column about the Red Hen)
In two visits to the Post site, we were offered ten different ways to kill time and lose ourselves in the excitement of the Red Hen. This represents the basic problem with the 24-hour "news cycle."

As of today, we still couldn't answer a lot of questions about policy at the Southern border. But land o' goshen! We've been offered so many ways to entertain ourselves with the incident at the Red Hen!

Why is our culture lying in tatters? We'd list talk radio, partisan cable, partisan Internet and social media as four principal offenders. That said, we'd also list the 24-hour "news cycle."

Round-the-clock "news" leads to round-the-clock bullsh*t. No distraction, no bait left behind!

41 comments:

  1. "Is it possible that the federal government has actually "lost" some kids?"

    Somerby seems to think that information exists but the press is too lazy to ask questions and write the answers down for people.

    Interviews of civil rights activists working with immigrants make clear that the government has not been transparent about its policies. It enacted zero tolerance in secrecy. Lawyers who work with those seeking asylum became aware of this and communicated it to activists, who then told the press. The government then refused to answer questions and tell people what was going on.

    It should be obvious even to Somerby that the press has not been allowed into the detention centers. Even members of congress were not allowed into them. It has been difficult to interview and question the people there.

    Nevertheless, I have seen stories reported about women who were given paperwork and told the names of their kids were included, but the papers had the wrong names on them. Others got nothing telling them where there kids were, not even a receipt. We know this because a judge was angry about it. Others were told to call a number that was a generic immigration phone line. In many cases, people calling were told that any contact info they provided would be used to locate them and in future immigration proceedings against them.

    So, yes, there is evidence that some children have been misplaced and there is also evidence that the government is placing obstacles between parents and displaced children.

    The press has made a strong effort to report what is going on, but the government has stonewalled.

    But Somerby thinks the press is exaggerating the problem. He thinks it cannot possibly be as bad as is being reported, that liberals are being hysterical again. What an ass Somerby is these days. He just won't believe that Trump is as bad as reported, and worse.

    Many people in Nazi Germany wouldn't believe that children with disabilities were being systematically murdered in hospitals, along with mentally ill, elderly and disabled adults. They thought reports of this were propaganda, hysteria ginned up by Hitler's enemies, communists, Jews. They didn't believe anything like that could happen. I think Somerby's mindset and refusal to accept what is being reported is similar. Trump's government is doing awful things. It is tempting to deny it, but evil people who do this stuff count on that reaction. Their reassurances make it easier to ignore the complaints that ARE coming from the people affected and those who work with them, civil rights organizations and lawyers. We need to continue to put pressure on our government, not blame the press as Somerby wishes to do.

    Somerby is on the side of the appeasers. He is wrong about this issue. He needs to pay attention to history and defend our liberties, even when it is immigrants (today's scapegoats) who are being targeted.

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      Delete
  2. Does Somerby think it is OK for the President of the United States to call an African American Congresswoman "a person of low intelligence"?

    Talk about a dog whistle to white supremacists!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Clarence Thomas has certainly had his detractors.

      Delete
    2. The President called her a low IQ person. The president. Not some white supremacist yahoo. The president.

      Delete
    3. I used to like Waters (though her race-baiting has always been rather obnoxious), but now she's turned into an outright zombie-nazi. Zombies have no IQ.

      Delete
    4. Mao, a quiz: Spell IQ.
      Lying sack of shit.

      Delete
    5. Trump is a liar and a thief.
      And Putin's bitch'

      Discuss.

      Delete
    6. Mao,
      You lying sack of shit.
      Discuss.
      Chickenshit worm.

      Delete
    7. Trump is an equal-opportunity insult-meister.

      Delete
    8. You thrive on that.

      Delete
    9. Afro-Americans and Latinos are more equal than others. Right?
      Trump whistles, you, Mao and DinC bark.
      Ruff, ruff.

      Delete
    10. No, that's wrong. I dont.

      Delete
    11. No shit. Fooled me.

      Delete
    12. Well, that's a perception you have a lot invested in.

      Delete
    13. No more than you have invested in the liar in chief.

      Delete
    14. Trump is a liar and a thief.
      And Putin's bitch.
      Dispute.

      Delete
    15. Well, since you're ok with that then...

      Delete
    16. I know all three assertions are true.
      Argue against it, worm.

      Delete
    17. Your cohort Mao will never respond.
      I wonder why.

      Delete
    18. Chickenshit.

      Delete
    19. AnonymousJune 26, 2018 at 11:45 AM -- you raise an interesting point. Should all races be treated the same? Should blacks be talked about differently from whites? If it's OK to call Trump dumb, is it equally OK to call Maxine Waters dumb?

      Delete
    20. Trump's not dumb--he's mentally ill and a sociopath (Copyright 2018, TDH)

      Delete
    21. David in CalJune 26, 2018 at 8:57 PM

      You raise an interesting point. Should all races be treated the same? Not as long as racism exists in the destructive manner it currently manifests.

      Should we expect the president to behave in a considered, mature, and respectful manner, differently from the more impetuous among us?

      Delete
    22. Yes, AnonymousJune 27, 2018 at 6:42 AM, we should expect the president to behave in a considered, mature, and respectful manner, differently from the more impetuous among us. Trump fails to meet this standard.

      However, this standard ought to apply to both parties. E.g., it would be immature and disrespectful to call Maxine Waters "stupid" or "insane" or "(anti-white) racist.". It's equally immature and disrespectful to apply those terms to Donald Trump.

      Delete
    23. Wait a minute.
      Why can't we call Trump a "racist"?
      This should be entertaining.
      While you think of an answer, I'll be making popcorn.

      Delete
    24. "Trump fails to meet this standard."

      David's TDS is on offer again today, I see.

      Delete
    25. The standard for being presidential applies....only to the president. Since Trump has entered the national political scene, his influence has led the level of discourse to devolve to the point where facts and evidence are dismissed, and insults and outlandish misinformation rule the day. One can not truly know Trump's inner thoughts on race, but he clearly uses racism to gain political power. This is not new to the Republican party, Lee Atwater spelled it out pretty clearly:

      Atwater: You start out in 1954 by saying, "Nigger, nigger, nigger". By 1968 you can't say "nigger"—that hurts you. Backfires. So you say stuff like forced busing, states' rights and all that stuff. You're getting so abstract now [that] you're talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you're talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is [that] blacks get hurt worse than whites. And subconsciously maybe that is part of it. I'm not saying that. But I'm saying that if it is getting that abstract, and that coded, that we are doing away with the racial problem one way or the other. You follow me—because obviously sitting around saying, "We want to cut this", is much more abstract than even the busing thing, and a hell of a lot more abstract than "Nigger, nigger".

      Delete
  3. "Why is our culture lying in tatters? We'd list talk radio, partisan cable, partisan Internet and social media as four principal offenders. That said, we'd also list the 24-hour "news cycle."

    Why not include Sanders on that list? Why not the President with his inflammatory tweets? Why not list the lack of transparency and the conflicting information given out by different agencies of our government? Why not blame the liars?

    Has it escaped Somerby's attention that Sanders was targeted at Red Hen because she has failed at her JOB of keeping Americans informed about their government? Red Hen is an issue because of the lying and unwillingness of our government to tell the people what it is doing (including the press).

    Somerby thinks Lawrence O'Donnell is supposed to magically discover what is happening even when no one tells the truth and no one answers questions and no one provides access to detainees, and no records are available. How?

    ReplyDelete
  4. "Why is our culture lying in tatters?"

    But it always was, Bob. "From barbarism to decadence without civilization in between".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Trump has improved our "culture". Ha!

      Delete
    2. m
      Mao, like his(?) hero Trump always makes shit up.

      FYI: Trump is a liar and a thief.
      And Putin's bitch.

      I eagerly await the video of the Russian whores pissing on Trump.

      Your kind of "culture" Mao.

      Delete
  5. If you google “Trump lost 1500 kids” you’ll see it’s not a case of the claim not having been covered, but of the media moving on.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I feel sorry for people in their 20s who don’t remember a day when adults were in charge.

    Be sure to read all the way down.

    http://thehill.com/homenews/media/393981-msnbcs-odonnell-i-would-love-for-the-president-to-attack-me-instead-of-cnn?dg

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  7. Somerby thinks the Red Hen incident is a distraction. I think it is important to report on protest. That is how our democracy works. People dissent and the press should cover dissent, not just government announcements.

    ReplyDelete
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