Corporate Media and the Dumbing Down of 'America'
If there is one thing that that those who oversee the so-called 'democratic' process in the United States fear the most - it is democracy itself.
One would have to be virtually deaf, dumb, and blind not to recognize that the giant 'news' and information media conglomerates in this nation are surrogates to the U.S. multi-national corporate elite. Even a cursory glance at U.S. corporate-stream media coverage demonstrates a strong and consistent bias in favor of the corporate owned politicians of the Democrat and Republican parties, and a dangerous lack of awareness pertaining to relevant news, in-depth coverage, and critical analysis thereto. Thus, those in the U.S., who trust in and rely upon, the supposed 'main stream' corporate media for relevant news, analysis, and information are kept in a perpetual dumbed-down mental state of ignorance and manipulation.
No 'democracy' can possibly be genuine when its populace is kept woefully uninformed. Rather, it is the sham of democracy that is perpetuated by the corporate-stream media in the U.S., not democracy itself. Moreover, an uninformed people are incapable of making intelligent, informed decisions. Perpetuating ignorance and lethargy is of course precisely the objective of the corporate-stream media. What better way to control people than to keep them ignorant, misinformed, and distracted?!
The corporate-stream media has replaced news and critical analysis with essentially sensationalism, gossip, and mindless entertainment. There are however, viable alternatives to this madness.
The Internet has a number of well established online national and/or international journals and magazine, including BlackCommentator.com, IntrepidReport.com, and a number of others that can give an urgent and important different perspective that call for critical thought and analysis. At this juncture however, it is crucial to note that the free flow of information on the Internet is under constant threat in one guise or another, by corporations and the U.S. corporate government itself. Stay aware of this as it directly affects you!
Additionally, there are numerous blog talk radio programs, and even alternative news and information networks both national and international that are not a part of the U.S. corporate-stream media that can be accessed online and/or through local radio stations or even short wave radio. These alternatives are invaluable sources of news, commentary, and analysis, and more often than not, provide crucial and relevant information about what is happening right here in the United States, as well as abroad. Feed your mind and 'occupy' it with these sources. You will not get this information through the corporate-stream media.
The Corporate-Stream Media and the 'Occupy Movement'
Contrary to corporate media myth, the 'Occupy Movement' is neither dead nor has it disappeared. Its seeds are already firmly planted and it is blossoming in varying forms and shapes throughout this nation and the world. Movements are not overnight affairs. They are long and protracted and take on differing shapes and forms as they develop and evolve.
The 'Occupy Movement' (which has been overwhelmingly ignored and/or mocked and distorted by the corporate-stream media) has nonetheless resourcefully demonstrated the value of creating one's own news and information outlets, as in the case of The Occupied Wall Street Journal in New York City, and The Occupied Washington Post in Washington, D.C., etc.
The wanton government condoned police brutality meted out to the 'Occupy Movement' in Oakland, California, New York City, Washington, D.C., and many other parts of this nation - combined with incessant corporate-stream media omissions and disinformation - clearly demonstrate the fear of a genuine people's democracy on the part of the corporate-owned government and the corporate-stream media, and by extension, their de facto fear of genuine democracy everywhere else in the world.
What We Must Do
The most effective way in which to address the corporate-stream media is to overwhelmingly tune it out. This does not mean that we should remain totally unaware of the corporate-stream media's propaganda. It does mean however, that on those occasions when we do read, watch, or hear the corporate media we must always keep in mind that the primary objective of the corporate media is to form [i.e. shapepublic opinion], not to inform opinion, which are two very different things.
We must also do our utmost to avoid being sucked in by corporate-stream media distractions such as the fake political skirmishes between the Democrat and Republican parties who both serve the same systemic corporate masters. We must strive to consistently pay attention to the everyday people, not the systemic Democrat and Republican party misleaders. The corporate media thrives on propagating distractions of all kinds. We must stay focused.
Finally, we must become our own collective media - networking and sharing information with other critically thinking everyday people like ourselves. Yes! We must 'occupy' our own minds first and foremost. We must remember and adhere to the words of Rosa Luxemburg, when she said, "Freedom is always and exclusively freedom for the one who thinks differently...Freedom is always the freedom of dissenters."
Each one teach one. Each one reach one. Onward, then, my sisters and brothers!
BlackCommentator.com Editorial Board Member, Larry Pinkney, is a veteran of the Black Panther Party, the former Minister of Interior of the Republic of New Africa, a former political prisoner and the only American to have successfully self-authored his civil / political rights case to the United Nations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. In connection with his political organizing activities in opposition to voter suppression, etc., Pinkney was interviewed in 1988 on the nationally televised PBS News Hour, formerly known as The MacNeil / Lehrer News Hour. For more about Larry Pinkney see the book, by William Mandel [Introduction by Howard Zinn]. (Click here to read excerpts from the book.) Click here to contact Mr. Pinkney.