Allison Kilkenny: Unreported

Ralph Nader’s Hollowed Skull

Posted in media by allisonkilkenny on January 3, 2008

Ralph Nader’s Hollowed Skull

It seems like every liberal pundit has their panties in a twist about Big Media mergers. When we’re hit over the head with A BIG story relentlessly, it’s easy to grow fatigued of the facts, even if they’re TERRIFYING and ACCURATE.

The reason everyone is blogging about this is because it’s scary and needs to be stopped.

Our politicians are in the pockets of media conglomerates like: VIACOM, GE, AOL/TIME WARNER, AT&T, NEWS CORP, BERTELSMANN, DISNEY, VIVENDI, LIBERTY MEDIA, and SONY. And that’s not me making selections from a long list of multinational conglomerates…that’s it. There are 10 companies that own most of our media airwaves, and when they cut a story from their scripts, that means the story is effectively buried.

Except, in the past, there were always some independent voices in the media like Pacifica, indymedia.org, alternet.org, and small radio stations and newspapers founded by brave, stubborn souls blessed (and cursed) with Give ‘Em Hell mentalities.

Of course, any birth defect (like a free spirit) threatens the nice, shiny aesthetic of prepackaged news.
To corporations, alternative news offends the senses, much like laying eyes upon a hairy tumor planted on the rosy cheek of an otherwise beautiful infant.

This is partially why the same 10 stories seem to be recycled on all the news channels, and why the same 10 songs seem to loop ad nauseam on the radio. You’re not crazy for thinking our media seems redundant. You’ve just reached the saturation point and you can taste the stale Fail on your tongue.

Everything seems the same – everything seems old and tired – because it is. Our news and arts are prepackaged by a handful of dusty fossils sitting in a boardroom miles and miles away from our burning villages.

And the perfect way to guarantee more Fail is by granting MORE MERGERS! What could stop further mergers? The FCC. But don’t further delude yourself into thinking the FCC and that little weasel Kevin Martin give a damn what any of us think. The people of the United States have made themselves very clear that they do NOT want further media mergers. But Martin and his pack of rapid wolves don’t care.

In fact, they had the gall to argue that further massive mergers are essential because newspaper production isn’t profitable anymore. HA! It’s more than profitable. Owning a newspaper can make you ridiculously rich. That fact comes from Forbes, which I hear is a group of profit-hungry apes that know a little something about money.

These mergers are byproducts of two realities: businesspeople are greedy and democracy is a constant battle. Even our president has said running a dictatorship would be a hell of a lot easier than running a democracy, and he’s right!

All this reading, writing, talking, and attentiveness is hard work. However, if we fail to continuously nurture our democracy, it begins to die. Vultures in suits swoop down and begin picking off pieces of our liberties until we find ourselves standing blind, deaf, and dumb before the white flame of Corporatism.

Trying to monitor business mergers is like trying to play chess with someone who is constantly changing the rules whilst attempting to pull the rug out from under your feet. Corporations want a totally free market where brand titans collide and mutate into some kind of horrible gelatinous creature that rolls through small town America, sucking up mom and pop operations whilst Rupert Murdoch cackles from the terrible beast’s back, shouting FOX slogans through a bullhorn he’s fashioned from Ralph Nader’s hollowed skull.

Well, we can’t let that become a reality. It’s important to understand ownership in a Capitalist economy. Learn your sources of independent news and fight to keep them independent. The wonderful thing about all of this internet stuff is that you can contact almost anyone you want, including your Senators and the FCC.

It’s even okay to yell at them a little bit. Just don’t threaten their lives or start reciting from the Koran. This is serious stuff. Without an independent media reporting muckraking investigations, crazy shit happens…like going to war with a country that never attacked us.

It’s okay to get mad about this stuff. In fact, it’s quite healthy for a democracy if – every once in a while – its citizens get really, really fucking pissed about something.

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