Tuesday, September 25, 2007

More on the Myth of Media Objectivity

What the evening news shows need is less "objectivity" and more analysis. The problem with objective journalism is that it doesn't exist and never did. Molly Ivins disposed of the objectivity question for all time when she observed in 1993, "The fact is that I am a 49-year-old white female, a college-educated Texan. All of that affects the way I see the world. There's no way in hell that I'm going to see anything the same way that a 15-year-old black high school dropout does. We all see the world from where we stand. Anybody who's ever interviewed five eyewitnesses to an automobile accident knows there's no such thing as objectivity."

I've said it before and Molly Ivins has said it too [see above]. There is no objectivity in the media. Amira Hass has said it: being fair and objective aren't the same thing.

If you don't yet know who Keith Olbermann is yet, you owe it to yourself to YouTube him. Journalism with a soul. Don't bother settling for anything less.

If you don't believe what Ivins is talking about above, you probably don't understand the multiple subjectivity of post-modernism and your value to a 21st century world is limited. Time to get with the program.

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Monday, September 17, 2007

Crossing the 49th: Dangerous for the Majority of Canadians Now

Alison Bodine had it right when she explained the intimidation intent of the Canadian Border Services as they nabbed her the other day: "This was a bit of a test, to see what happens when they arrest someone who isn't agreeing with their current foreign policy."

Carrying literature opposing Canada's occupation of Afghanistan and an extremely threatening book of Ansel Adams photos, she was detained by Canadians. Her possessions were confiscated a few days ago when she was entering the country. When she returned to claim them, they arrested her with no intention of releasing her before her September 17th hearing. After a significant impromptu rally and her participating in radio interviews from jail, it appears the feds' red faces found the gumption to actually release her.

Since the majority of Canadians oppose our presence in Afghanistan, driving south then returning with literature critical of our mission there may land any of us in the pokey.

Border Services claim she was misrepresenting herself. Perhaps she was. Perhaps it was all just a misunderstanding. If it wasn't, it is intimidation...and a warning to us all to toe the line.

And after the agents provocateurs in Quebec last month, the establishment doesn't have a great deal of goodwill to waste here.

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