Friday December 20, 2013
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It was third period on that November day and my next period was study hall. That meant I had about an hour to find my friends and do something. (besides study)
As I walked down the halls; However, I noticed that there was a quietness, a somber feeling pervaying the school. Girls were crying, Guys were crying, friends were huddled together and discussing something.....I didn't know what......until someone said....They shot the President....Kennedy is dead.
I wasn't aware at the time but the news reached us within minutes of the event and the coverage, live coverage was constant for the next several days.
I don't know anyone who wasn't glued to the "media" then.
As I look back, that's when it happened. When the 5th Estate learned that they had the power to control emotion and impression, and the future of news.
They sensed the power during the Debates of 1960 between Nixon and Kennedy, but they found it when Kennedy was shot. They also created one of the greatest controversies of our time with their reports on the reasons he was shot.
If this seems a little strange then answer this. When did Truman die? When did Eisenhauer Die? Okay more recently, when did Gerald Ford die? Where is Spiro Agnew? IF you can't answer these questions than you are a schill, a pawn and an expendable player in the game of chess being waged against freedom for the sake of control. The media wants you to believe them......not what's necessarily
I am getting off the subject sort of. I know I am older than you but do you remember when we got pictures of the news at the movies for about 5 minutes once a week?
I think it was more honest and there were not so called news people all over the front lines of World War ll giving opinions. Only pictures of what was happening. Not enough time. More honesty in reporting. News not opinions.
I don't listen to the news stations that are on all day. And if I listen to the President or some one make a speech I turn it off when they are thru as I don't want to hear someone tell me what they said or meant. I can make up my own mind.
Does this make me a schill? I am expecting an answer on that.
I had the oven door open putting a German choclate cake in when the news came on about Kennedy.
I was walking up some steps next to the Lone Pine Hotel, when my granddad came out of his house and said Roosevelt was dead. Don't remember the date. I was only about 8 yrs old.
I think Whitney Houston has had more air time than all of the ones we mentioned.
Is that sick or what?
"I know I am older than you but do you remember when we got pictures of the news at the movies for about 5 minutes once a week?"
"Does this make me a schill?"
I remember the day that Roosevelt died. I was in the 8th grade. I walked to school and was amazed to see a girl crying her eyes out. I asked Richie Shellman--someday to be Father Richard--what was wrong with her. He told me that the president had died. I thought that was too bad, but since he was not related to me I felt no impulse to cry. And maybe because if was just a dumb young male of 13, who knows?
I was shocked when Kennedy died. He was the right man for a difficult time, not perfect but a man of courage and vision. His passing changed the course of history, and what followed his death is clear cut proof that the habit of making up a presidential ticket by pandering to regional prejudices simply does not work.
As to the media, part of the trouble started when it began to be seen, not as a loss item, necessary to serve the public and part of the service requirement of a commercial license, but as a possible profit item. I watched that happen. I listened to, and read, the commentary on it. There was a not too subtle change in news reporting. The number of minutes allocated to fluff began to increase as solid news items dwindled. And the ease with which video could be obtained in minutes instead of days had a lot to do with changing the news into a form of entertainment.
What hurt--and very badly--was when the FCC rules on the balance between commercial time and program time changed--another part of "deregulation." That allowed more time for profit taking, and less for news, resulting in an expansion of the 30 minute news to to an hour, and then beyond that, sometimes even to two hours.
Read Ted Turner's autobiography to get some insight into that.
Another part of the problem was the merging of news commentary with the news. When was the last time when you heard someone say, "And now a comment from Bleepity Bleep? There was a time when commentary was clearly separated from news. That is no longer true. They are now merged, resulting in a slanted view.
And there is, of course, human nature. It is impossible to tell a story without some of your own personal views straying into the mix. Read what I am writing here. Ask yourself. Is he for or against the changes? How do you know the answer? It is inherent in the way I am putting down these facts, some of which are NOT facts, but impressions and opinions, and yet I am presenting then as facts, aren't I?
As far back as there have been newspapers they have been filled with opinion. In early days was obvious, but I'm willing you could go back one, two, three, four hundred years, read the headlines, and catch the writer's slant. There is nothing new about slanted news. It is a human activity, and human are emotional animals.
The question is: When is it wrong?
From my close reading of recent history (the past 30 years or so) I can easily see when it becomes wrong. It becomes wrong when events are ignored. When some things are reported and other not reported because they run against the grain of those doing the reporting. You have no idea how often that happens. Read autobiography to see what I mean, especially the autobiography of people in any way involved in the government. There is only so much room for news. By constantly reporting on the same subjects it is possible to create a pool of people who share your views. Why? When do they see something else?
The result is a hard time for some points of view, but instead of eliminating those points of view, it tends to radicalize them, creating extremists out of frustration. If you cannot get your message to the people, you cannot succeed in government. Then you begin crying foul and others listen to you and take up the cry.
It is not, however, only the news media that is to blame. Far from it. It is also the use of the media by politicians to foster their goals, and the sensitivity they feel to the way their actions will be reported. Pick up Normal Swarzkopf's autobiography and read it. It's a joy to read anyway, and you'll get an education when you read about him over there in Saudi Arabia, trying to get a war plan set up, and having to adjust day after day after day because of the worries of Congress and the President.
What is to be done about it?
Nothing. You cannot change human nature, and any attempt to change it with laws would be self-destructive.
One thing that would help is if politicians would quit howling when the media takes a sour view of what they are doing, claiming--often incorrectly--that the sour view is caused by a fixed point of view in the media, when in fact the politicians themselves are trying to sell us lemons by calling them lush, ripe peaches.
Pat, I remember the 'mimiographed' news magazine we got in elementary school. The one that had the 'Breck Girl' on the back. We read and studied about world events but in the end we used our erasers to turn the 'girl' into something funny.
On Saturdays, after about 10 in the morning, the TV westerns were over, serials were done and it was time to get with our friends and go to the Movies. If we got there by noon, we'd get in for a quarter, by a large popcorn, soda and candy bar for the 75 cents we had left from our dollar and watch films until 4pm. There was a lot of horse play in the theater, it always depended on what the serial character was at the moment. Most important to todays' issues, there was never any violence off the screen. (someone might have thrown popcorn but only until the ushers said stop)
Ushers were ever present, they had flashlights, they had the authority to throw you out, you would be embarrassed.
Pat, people had more important things to do than pay attention to anal politicians...oops....maybe that was the problem. We let them slither in to take control of our lives because we weren't paying attention.
When I was kid here in Payson we didn't have TV or movies. Poor kids. We had to find our own amusement. Tramping over the hills, going to the school and play work up on the baseball field or we went to someone's house and played Monopoly. Don't know how many games we wore out.
But we knew how to count money and count change. Something most people under 45 don't know now. Sometimes in the summer we would con someone in to taking us out to the Verde below the first crossing going south and spend the day swimming and getting sunburned.
In the winter when it snowed we would take our sleds up to Payson Rock and slide down the hill, duck when we got to the barbed wire fence and sometimes didn't get stopped untill we fell into American Gulch in the icy water. Amazing no one ever got hurt going under the fence.
For those of you who don't know where Payson Rock is, it is located almost to the top of the hill behind the gun shop on Main Street. All you can see now is a P on the Rock.
It always had Payson painted on it until the 60's I think. When I moved back up here I went to the
Forest Service to ask them if I could have Payson painted back on it. Could not get permission.
Does that surprise anyone?
No matter where in town we were if we got hurt we could go into the nearest house and some adult would take care of us.
It was a great life.
Most of us had chores to do at home before the play began.
"When I was kid here in Payson we didn't have TV or movies."
When I was a kid in New York City we had radio and movies. During the day we ignored them. Who wanted to sit indoors when there so many things to do? The only exception was on Saturday afternoon in the summer when we had all week off (no school). Then we would go to the Victory theatre and watch a good movie.
There was no rowdiness of any kind. For one thing, there was no popcorn. That came long after I was a kid. And if anyone had thrown anything the kids would have punched his lights out. We were there to watch the movie. We had to pay for it, money was the one thing no one had much of, and anyone who interrupted a movie we had to pay for was the enemy. We didn't need ushers, and anyway during the day there weren't any; they were for adults in the evening.
As to kid's programs, they tried getting us to listen during the day on Saturdays but no one did. The time for programs was in the evening when it was too dark to do much.
That changed when I was in New London. They started sticking kid's program on some stations and some kids listened to them, but most of us had too many other things to do.
I heard Rush Limbaugh mention today a correlation that I related too about the incident in Colorado that seems to fit into this string. I don't intend to change direction only offer this observation.
In 1964, Batman was a comic character, unreal and something to find amusing. A comic book hero on TV where comic books were still appealing to both children and parents alike.
In 1974, Batman was gone and no where to be found in society.
In 1984 comic book production began on the Dark Knight series that premiered in the 1986 in comic books. In 1989 Tim Burton put the 'Dark Knight' on the big screen and the series has continued darker and darker ever since.
How did we go from fun comics to fearful violence in a mear 30 years? Look at society and see.
"How did we go from fun comics to fearful violence in a mear 30 years? "
Tom I agree the profit is involved but why? Where did we lose our moral integrity? Why did we go see the 'movie'? It wasn't about profits alone, it was about a change in moral attitude. Am I wrong?
No morals, no manners, no respect, no kindness.
Violence, sex, rudeness, me, me, me.
"We" didn't lose our moral integrity. We made a mistake when we set up the country. Our founding fathers were a very moral group of people. They foresaw what political parties and majority rule could come to, but they didn't want to ban parties. What they foresaw has come about. We have to take the power back out of the hands of parties and put it back in the hands of the people.
What have the parties done? They've allowed two opposite philosophies to enter and gain control of our government.
One is the intrusion of business into government; it is not a proper role of government to either help or hinder business and industry. The separation between business and government should be as absolute as the separation of religion and government. The government has no legitimate role in either helping or harming business. Business can take care of itself. The minute we begin doing things which "foster" business, we go where we do not belong. Business must be free of government interference to grow and prosper, but by the same token, government must be free of business interference to remain fair and honest. Our founding fathers would be shocked to see the way we pander to business without ever realizing that when we do that we inevitably go too far, just as, Dan, we would inevitably go too far if we tried, with the very best intentions, to show people how much Christianity means. See what I am saying? Get government out of business, and business out of government. Maybe we need a new amendment. Perhaps it might say, "The operation of government without undue business influence being essential to democracy, the regulation of business shall be limited to ensuring that businesses are operated in the best interests of the people and without fraud, dishonesty, or unfair practices."
The other is intrusion of government into private lives; government has no legitimate place in the private lives of individuals. The minute we break that rule we get into the kind of mess we have. Trying to tell people what they can eat or drink, we created prisons in which four fifths of the people are there because they ate something the government says is not good for them. And in trying to say that what two consenting individuals do in the privacy of their homes is protected, we overstep the bounds and start telling people that they are not allowed to have an opinion about what is morally correct. The result is that we have people walking around San Francisco stark naked. And in trying to educate people out of their prejudices we end up reversing the process and putting the government in the position of being prejudiced against people for what they feel. Look! I fought like a tiger for equal rights, but I am not stupid enough to try to write laws which try to correct THINKING. People are NOT perfect. We often do not like what others feel, but as long as they don't harm anyone they have a right to feel that way. Only time repairs such things, NOT laws!
And Pat is right. The Me! Me! Me! thing is fostered by people who make money out of it.
Look. The airwaves belong to the people. Back when we used to control what passed over them we had great entertainment, didn't we? Is anyone prepared to say that we didn't have great books and films in the 1930's? Nobody lost a thing because of controls. Nobody will if we reinstate them. Freedom of speech is an INDIVIDUAL freedom. It does not extend to a right of faceless businesses to use the airwaves (or the internet) owned by the people to actively promote immorality. But that's what is happening now. There are people who are actively working to undermine the moral stance of the government by abusing the First Amendment. We need to get up on out two hind legs and tell them they can no longer get away with it.
Taking a chance on being criticized for doing it, I'll take an example from Christianity to make the point better than I can.
Is it right to kill people?
The Bible says, "Thou shalt not kill."
But we do. We kill all kinds of people. We kill murders under the law. We kill someone who draws a gun and tries to kill a cop. We kill soldiers in a battle zone. We kill civilians in a war between peoples. We kill people!
How can we square that with the Sermon on the Mount?
Easy. Shown a coin, Christ said, "Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's, and unto God the things that are God's"
Clearly, two things come into operation here:
One is the word "thou," which is directed at us as individuals. It says, as clearly as it can be said, that as individuals we may NOT kill. And our laws reflect that exact point.
The other is the meaning of "Caesar," which is correctly interpreted to mean, "The government." So, once again, the meaning is clear. When we come together as a group, as a government, we are allowed to do what governments must do, and one of those things it to protect us. So we kill as a government, but as individuals we are forbidden to kill. Hopefully, one of these days people will heed the Ten Commandments and there will be no need to do it.
Just as clearly, the First Amendment was addressing the free speech right of individuals, not corporations. So when we tell a corporation we do not want them to lead our kids astray we have very right to do it.
Weren't we all born naked? (:
Adam and Eve were placed on earth naked.
The Reality, The number of people who believe that God exists, is dwindling. Self identifed Christians are still a majority of the population but the number of young people who do not believe is growing. Why? They see no proof that Christianity gives them what they want. They don't believe in a hereafter it's all about here and now. It's about me, it's about now, It's about why wait, and they are not getting the message that life is not about now.
Before you young ones challenge that, If you are 20, go ask someone who is 40 about decisions you are considering. If you are 30, go ask someone who is 60 about decisions your are considering.
So many of you have been taught that you are the future and what you want will come to pass, but they didn't tell you the truth and teach you the reality of life. Go talk to your Grandparents. Hopefully you have Grandparents. If you don't, find someone with gray hair and ask them about life.
"Adam and Eve were placed on earth naked."
Yes, and they donned clothes because they were not animals.
"They see no proof that Christianity gives them what they want."
They would if they were given a chance to see it.
I have always personally felt that "it is more blessed to give than to receive" really meant that giving felt so good, and so right, that it was all the reward needed. The trouble is that kids don't get much of a chance to experience that feeling in today's world because their attention is jerked away from the important things in life and focused on other things. All it takes to know you are leading the right life is to try it. The proof is in how it feels.
The kids don't have much to experience in giving because they always have thier hand out wanting something given to them.
That kind of experience depends on being shown how to give it.
If a parent has a child do something and then praises him for it, the result is that the child feels good. Anytime we feel good we want to feel that way again. It's a simple matter of letting children see what gets rewarded. That's the way I was brought up. Mom might, for example, ask (not tell) me to take out the trash. Then, when it was done she would always say thanks, and it was always easy to tell that she meant it. My two oldest brothers used to tell me that Mom had a lot of work to do because she was alone after Daddy died. They didn't preach at me, but they let me know that it was nice to help. They did, so they set an example. One thing both of them did was drop out of high school and go to work to support the family, and they were the only support. Both of them went to night school to get their diplomas. We learn that giving is better than receiving by seeing it, and doing it.
There is nothing stopping parents from teaching that now, but there is no one, anywhere, teaching THEM to do things, especially in the churches. The preaching is too vague and general. A few words here and there about how to put Christian ethics into the lives of children would be time well spent.
I will never forget the time over in England that it coming time for David's first holy communion and I asked the Catholic chaplain who was going to teach him his catechism. The answer? "How about you?" Like asking the blind to lead the blind. My level of knowledge was close to zero. What did he do for a living? He got married soon after; you tell me.
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