Bothering by the book: It's what helped killed journalism, but they still use that logic.

Journalism has a nasty strain of nerdism. They are frustrated bureaucrats who are like Les Nessman, sternly babbling about not seeing an invisible office where a cubicle is as if everyone else she indulge in that sort of lunacy.

They are binary. If you do not agree with the politics, then you must by default be on the opposite side.

No, I am a Radical Centrist. I am not going to follow your stupid rules that killed your profession. I look at reality. I look at facts. I look at the bottom line. Left and Right is not the full picture, thank you very much.

I was listening to the Square Panel Discussion on Moore in the Morning on News Talk 1010 this morning, and while they may call it round, the only ones spewing this morning were square.

Yesterday, you had a Prime Minister talk down to a premier out in public, and the various biased Lefty shills were all applauding his Majesty's behaviour like good little mindless minions.

And, of course, there was no one to challenge them.

I am a first generation Canadian, as in, raised by immigrants, and I find the federal regime's behaviour very destructive to the global equation. You have tens of millions of people seeking asylum in a handful of countries -- that doesn't just destroy the host countries who are in no position to accommodate this many people who have no resources -- many who are very ill, have no skills, and no means to support themselves as they bring various baggage with them -- but also to the countries they leave behind.

You have places such as Puerto Rico that are struggling to rebuild after a disaster because too many younger people just upped and went.

I would make it mandatory for every person who advocates bringing in illegal immigrants to take in one family -- and not one of their own choosing -- into their own homes and support them. Put your money where your mouth is (and for the record, when Civil War broke out in the former Yugoslavia, my mother did precisely that with granddad's home, taking in three families who fled from Bosnia).

But the panel on the radio show who have no idea about the reality or consequences, just spewed how great it was to be patronizing in public and that there are rules and obligations, so Canada has to follow it.

This is a real-life use of a trope known as Bothering by the Book.

You have Leftist regimes who made up rules and now everyone has to follow them forever.

No, they don't.

Once upon a time, you had politicians say it was against the law for women to vote; so do not cross that line in the sand.

You cannot use it as an excuse to hold people to rules created in the past that cannot account for the realities of the future. It is not divine decree.

Rules are meant to be tested, turned, and broken, even when it is not convenient to do so, and especially if there is a bad policy.

And this is as bad of a policy as you can get.

There is no questioning of whether it is better to turn people away, and then do something for their country of origin to ensure whatever the Big Problem happens to be, it is dealt with so people can stay. You tear familial fabric apart, and the ramifications of displacing a generation of people can be devastating.

It is not a moral thing to do. It is a highly immoral one.

But it is not surprising that the dead profession of journalism is advocating this lunacy.

They are still bothering by the book in their own profession and in their academic halls.

You cannot create change or bring in radical and innovative ideas to reflect changing times because there are rules, traditions, protocols, and other shackles a previous regime installed to rig a board to their own favour.

They played that game until they self-destructed.

Well-played, children.

Now you are trying to bring that toxic thinking to destroy countries.

Are you all out of your minds?

You cannot have TORTEE. You cannot have binary thought become your blinders to reality.

You cannot have over eighty million people around the world just up and go into a smaller space. That would be like two Canadas roaming around like nomads.

What would happen to Canada if half the country just picked up and wandered to another country, say Cuba, to seek asylum? How well would our economy turn out? How would Cuba handle it?

We never think to reverse equations or look at other places and times. No, sorry, we have obligations to a corrupt Establishment regime like the UN, so that's that, how dare you question or challenge it?

How dare you not?

You have homeless people sleeping out in the streets. Your shelters are overflowing.

Not just in Toronto, but in small towns.

And you think you can handle this influx without asking hard questions -- or thinking up solutions that would better serve the reason why people are fleeing?

Nice try.

But it helps when you deal with reality without a chip on your shoulder, something the current federal regime here seems incapable of doing...

F.R.E.E.D., Version 1.0.

Was Chaser Investigative News Services.

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And it was a wild ride to say the least.

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It was not your usual news site, and it wasn't meant to be.

It had its own rhythm and melody, and did what other media outlets didn't do: show audiences behind the scenes of news-gathering, showing all of my cards.

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It got media coverage, however. Not a lot, but it did.

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It even had rogue advertising all around the city that I did not sanction.

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Not too many news outlets can actually say they had an underground audience.

A youthful audience.

I wasn't even a WikiLeaks.

But I used a lot of psychology to get to the truth of a story.

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And those stories were highly unusual, such as art crimes.

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I wrote about a missing woman who vanished and showed up during a rally when a photographer unknowingly snapped her picture.

I revisited old stories I covered as a reporter. It was an experiment, and I was very dedicated.

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But it wasn't enough. I had my third book published during that era, a collection of short stories told in an epistolary style.

I was experimenting with my fiction and my journalism.

I could not get enough publicity, despite having a lot of hits and regular readers.

That was an absolute shame.

But I learned from Chaser.

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I cracked open the codes for both fictional storytelling and nonfictional work.

Would I count Chaser as a failure? It would be the same as taking in a kitten that needed some very specific dietary requirements that you had to access to getting for it -- no matter how hard you tried to love it and nurture it, the critical element was not obtainable no matter how hard you push, and in your heart you know this is something you love and dote over, but it is not going to make it.

If that is a failure, then it is what it is.

I knew I didn't have that one critical ingredient. There was no way I could get it without losing focus on the product. There was only one of me doing it.

But what if the next cat you find has the same problem?

What happens?

If you know going in what the trouble is, you can be better prepared. You can overcome it because you have the knowledge about what you absolutely need to get what you absolutely want.

That little life you rooted for always stays in your heart no matter what, but the new life doesn't play second banana or serve as a stand in. You love it for its own merits, but you have threads you begin to weave representing each little life you took under your wing.

And that is what I have been doing. Very slowly. Very methodically.

Chaser came a couple of years after my first two books and during my third.

F.R.E.E.D. comes during the release of my fourth book.

But it also comes as a cumulation of all my previous work.

I had time to sit and to think with reflection. Chaser was a reaction of everything I came off after researching journalism by being a journalist for years.

It still has the elements that worked best with Chaser. It has elements from A Dangerous Woman.

But it also has elements the other two lacked.

So it all comes together. 

And it begins to grow...

F.R.E.E.D. builds with facts.

Journalism could have been saved. I have said this repeatedly over the years, and I was not happy that it ignored good and kind-hearted advice to destroy itself.

But what is done is done.

It lost its way. It reminds me of Netherlands' football team's downfall: they held on to the past and never progressed.

Sometimes a profession becomes a living being of its own, and journalism was it.

It used to be a thing.

A very alert thing that had ideas and was on the ball.

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Sometimes I go back and listen to old radio broadcasts, watch old newscasts, and read old newspaper and magazine articles, and it sends chills down my spine how journalism could be a good thing, even when it was in a less savvy world.

I immerse myself just to make sure it wasn't a mirage or me remembering it with rose-coloured glasses.

It wasn't.

I was a news-savvy kid. I watched In the News with Christopher Glenn and also 60 Minutes. I read newspapers from all over the world.

Those days are gone. It is hard to believe that one profession can fall so low that they no longer remember what they used to do.

They used to care about the world.

And they used to chronicle it with care.

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But over time, something happened to the mindset of those chroniclers.

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It became a rote routine. They forgot about exploring within the profession, and not just the world they were covering.

And you can never forget about the world within you.

They forgot about Christopher Glenn. And Nellie Bly.

They forgot about all those journalists who got hurt doing their jobs.

They forgot about how journalists had to sneak out facts from censors and dangerous regimes during times of war.

They forgot and then they dismantled a perfectly good profession.

F.R.E.E.D. builds with facts.

It builds worlds. It builds the knowledge base for people.

It builds its own profession so that it doesn't collapse the way its predecessor did.

Because when you cover the world outside of us, you must also build the one inside of us as well, or everything comes crashing down for no good reason at all...

F.R.E.E.D. is minimalism explored to the maximum.

F.R.E.E.D. is not about showing people how clever you are. It is about making facts accessible and understandable.

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It is not about minimum effort, however. It about heavy lifting to find a solution.

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You want positivity? You will not get it through passivity.

You want to move people, you have to move obstacles obscuring truth and reality.

You find mileage in facts. Facts are the fuel that take you a long way. It is not about filling up pages with colour or spin.

There is a thousand pieces of knowledge and wisdom that comes from a single rock, for instance. It can be a tool or a weapon. It can be art or turned into grains. It's not just a boring old rock. Recently I went to a lecture about a couple who went to find the places where the Group of Seven painted, and they had stumbled upon a rock where one of the artists was photographed painting, and they went back frequently, but then came a day where the rock was missing -- it had fallen down a cliff, but they managed to retrieve it and put it back to its original place.

And it was but a mere rock.

We think we have progressed, but we haven't. We are always prowling for novelty, when we have abandoned countless facts because we never bother to explore or go deeper or pull further back to see the big picture.

F.R.E.E.D. gets maximum mileage from minimalist facts.

It is about finding truths to show us reality, and often we are satisfied thinking we found one fact, exposed it, and then walked away.

That's not what we are supposed to do. A single fact has infinite meanings and consequences.

We can even be bogged down by too many facts as we neglect the ones we have already found.

F.R.E.E.D. is the Creative Science of fact-finding and verification.

But also its exploration and dissemination.

We haven't even started yet.

And that's the first fact we can explore...

F.R.E.E.D. is not about hiding fearful reality. It is about facing it.

F.R.E.E.D. isn't about holding your hand to tell you everything is going to be okay.

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Journalism pandered to keep audiences from running away and screaming to their own destruction.

I gave a talk a few years back at the Burlington Art Centre (now known as the Art Gallery of Burlington) about the topic of art crimes in Canada and how Canada was vulnerable to it. I had mentioned many examples, including several heists and thefts of paintings.

After the talk, I had one woman come to me with confidence, saying that then it was far safer to keep your expensive art at home. I had informed her that was absolutely no better, especially as there were gangs who broke into houses of the well to do in places such as Montreal and stole those paintings. Galleries and museums at least had adequate insurance. Her swaggering airs just vanished as her faced blanched and she quickly walked away.

That wasn't what she wanted to hear.

No, sorry, there isn't a safe rule that will be an easy answer. You keep expensive art in your house and show it off, you become a target. There is no security system that can't be overcome. 

I thought a lot about that interaction. She was obviously in her mid-70s at least, and she still had some notion that life could be fair and the bad guys could always be thwarted.

I have known a lot people like her: the kind who think people get sick or robbed because they did something wrong, and then when those people have the same fate befall them, only then do they see that bad things can happen to anyone.

Like the old punchline to the joke, just don't step on a duck, and there will be no shackles placed on you in Heaven.

Except sometimes you get shackled to someone even if you are careful, just like the joke goes.

The joke makes light of the concept of a rig: no matter what you do, sometimes the same thing happens -- except in one case it is spun to seem like a bad thing, and the other, it is spun to seem like a positive thing.

But how positive is it to be chained to a resentful person for eternity?

No matter how attractive they are. Their ugly attitude can turn your Heaven into a Hell.

There is a lot of subtext in that silly joke.

Journalism eroded over time, and it begin to serve as a social pacifier, making bad things seem good, when they were horrible. People were trained to seek bad things for themselves, and be grateful for an environment that led to their ruin.

But if they got facts without any spin, would they be as happy with their environment?

No, because they would be facing reality. There would be no sophistry-based nudge to calm them down.

F.R.E.E.D. just provides facts so that we can see how much we should be satisfied with the current reality -- is it good, bad, ugly, or something to be feared?

If we face the ugly reality, then what truths do we need to solve it?

And then instead of being lulled into accepting something toxic, we seek to correct it, solving our problems.

There may be conflict and disagreement, but when there is a hard reality to face, explaining away facts as a form of misdirection becomes blaring.

The woman who ran away from my comments would have been wiser to ask me other questions, such as what would make her artwork vulnerable to theft to whether there were patterns to thefts to what resources or specialists were there to minimize the risk. I could have easily answered her.

If only she had been braver and more open to finding facts.

Journalism forgot about the power of facts, and thought opinion and spin was mightier.

And it never is...

 

F.R.E.E.D. is not about bravura. It is about facts.

Chest-thumping is not journalism, and yet that's all journalists do these days. Something in the world does not conform to a script or expectations, and journalists lose their minds.

That is never actually helpful.

We have enough of the hysterics on Twitter, a web site that ought to consider replacing the bird logo with something more appropriate, such as a crying baby.

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Rage is not a sign of power. It is a sign of resignation and helplessness.

And that's why we are seeing journalists throwing fits instead of reporting facts: they no longer have power, and now, like children who have no say in their lives, are being bratty.

And the more rage you have, the less you can see.

You can't be a job as a reporter when you are too busy hollering at newsmakers.

F.R.E.E.D. is not about bravura. It is about reporting facts. It is not about telling people how to think or what to do.

It is about reporting facts.

F.R.E.E.D defines objectivity, yet emotional literacy is just as important, but it is not about whining when reporting on bad news.

It is about using feelings to verify and find information, meaning that there are two kinds of objectivity: intellectual objectivity, but also emotional objectivity. 

Emotional objectivity comes from understanding the differences between reality and perception. Anger, fear, and hatred create mirages, and we see how badly rage influences the public.

F.R.E.E.D. doesn't contribute to those illusions. It exposes them as such.

That is what journalism was supposed to do, but when their power fell, the industry's attitude changed from objective to arrogant.

And you have no vision when your filters blind you with arrogance...

Dear Toronto Star Editorial Board: Don't talk to us about anything wearing those blinders of yours.

The Toronto Star gets perpetually snitty whenever someone says something that goes against their narrative. Their latest temper tantrum is a silly rant about White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders's comments that Canada has "taken advantage" US's "niceness."

That isn't entirely false, particularly when it comes to US media. Our television networks have been airing US shows for decades, and their journalism products have been scraping US media, too. Americans have been our employers for a long time.

Even our entertainers, from actors to singers to authors, made serious breakthroughs because the US market accommodated us, embracing us even though we are more liberal foreigners.

They don't do it all for free, but they could have been a lot worse to this country, too. They could have made all sorts of frightening demands. Considering how lop-sided the dynamic has always been, Americans could have made it a living hell for us. Countries who are close to Russia, did not have the same freedoms and we are far less diligent and hard-working than the US, and we have still reaped a lot from that relationship. We are geographic captives. We have no place to go, and their size compared to ours should be a big hint that we have often taken Americans for granted, tweaking their noses whenever we get a chance.

So now there is an American president who doesn't cut slack. We are not owed that slack. We are a nation whose very survival hinges on the goodwill of our more powerful neighbours.

The Toronto Star should think very carefully before babbling something as ignorant and arrogant as their op-ed piece.

Sanders isn't wrong. Americans do not actually need Canada. They owe this country absolutely nothing. They can shut us out and not even feel it.

On the other hand, if the US were to slap us with sanctions or merely stop trading with us, and we become a Third World Nation in short order. We'd immediately have to deal with a surge of unemployed people, and our tax base would shrink, and considering how much we sink in social services, it would be a domino effect, and our comfy lifestyles would go right out the window.

The Star has always had some bloated swaggering ideas that do not align with reality. The sense of entitlement is obvious with their demands the federal government pay their bills or else democracy will end.

And now they are getting lippy with a country who has the fate of this country in their hands.

Canadians needed a press not throw fits. They needed a press to find facts without snarky and uppity commentary.

These are very volatile times for Canada, and we have a Prime Minister with a chip on his shoulder, arrogantly talking down to Ontario's new premier in publicfluffing off sexual harassment allegations even as he exploited feminism to suit his own political ends, among other things (voguing on the taxpayers's dime and having lavish conflict of interest vacations and then fluffing it off as if the rules do not apply to him).

This is a federal regime that spites its own provinces when they want to forge their own way. The vindictiveness is very open, and very authoritative.

Canadians need information, not haughty swipes. The Star honestly confuses its uppity ignorance for data. 

When Americans were in a good mood and there was no Internet to weak their clout, they could get away with not knowing the difference, and worse, getting it wrong.

These aren't those days anymore, and they still making the same toxic mistakes, refusing to learn anything in the bargain...

F.R.E.E.D.: Toward finding the path to a Creative Science

Storytelling and journalism have one deficit in common: they reject the notion of weaving the science when it is about 50% of what was needed.

When I began the concept of Matriarchal Storytelling as a distinct alternative to the Patriarchal, I used a lot of what I did when I was conducting research on journalism by becoming a journalist.

I used a modified form of experimental psychology. I have called it applied psychology, but if we are going to be precise, what I did was, in fact, employing Creative Science; i.e., a form of science that was in tune with the creative arts.

Journalism never did that and it destroyed itself. Storytelling has almost exclusively shut ant structure that is not Patriarchal and we are seeing book publishing languishing as a result.

F.R.E.E.D. and Matriarchal Storytelling both use creative science as the fuel to progress, innovate, and expand its tools and base. We need a special kind of science where the laboratory is not in a sterile Ivory Tower with people in lab coats.

But both take the empirical elements of science to modify them into delving for knowledge to understand the deepest truths of the universe to improve the harshest realities of the world.

Think how many times you made a mistake and hurt someone's feelings or missed out on a wonderful opportunity, and you say to yourself, If I could do it over again, I would have done it differently.

F.R.E.E.D. is the system where you do things differently under specific conditions in order to compare and contrast the outcomes, but also observe different groups of people under the same conditions to see their own outcomes.

F.R.E.E.D. is utopian scholarship: we stop stagnating at What If and begin our journey from What Could Be to What Is.

F.R.E.E.D. is not about believing lies or being satisfied with a status quo rut: it is about improving the world. It is based in practical idealism that trains people to be Altruistic Chroniclers -- but not Martyrs.

If you are out to make things better for everyone, you include yourself in that number. 

And your part of making things better is by liberating truth from the fortress of lies.

You present facts.

Matriarchal Storytelling creates the maps from those facts: this is where we are -- and here are where the next places are for us to reach.

And while we refine the artistic part, we do so by using Creative Science.

We work toward a clearly defined goal, but not by a set script.

F.R.E.E.D. is a superior alternative to journalism: it is built with not just the future in mind and at heart, but it also takes lessons from the past as it finds purpose in the present.

The Matriarchal shows us connections, overlaps, contradictions, parallels, convergences, and divergences.

The two go hand-in-hand to create a weave that is easy to comprehend at first glance, and those weaves become pages that inform us with not just the science -- but the art as well...

How egotistical is the Washington Post? They honestly think the Capital Gazette-Capital killer was an attack on journalism.

America has a serious violence problem.

The End.

The world has a serious violence problem.

Period.

There was a killer went and gunned down some people at a newspaper as if he had the right, just as a driver mowed down some people in Toronto -- a city that in a span of a few days, has had eleven people killed by gun.

Families get gunned down. Every day. Office workers get gunned down. Students get gunned down. A lot.

Estranged wives get gunned down. Neighbours, too. Parents, children, all get gunned down.

Gang member gets gunned down. Criminals gets gunned down.

Innocent people get gunned down. Elderly, children, teens all get gunned down.

Men get gunned down. So do women. Of all races. Of all nationalities. Of all sexual orientations.

That is everyday reality in many neighbourhoods during peacetime.

Journalists do not seem to be in tuned with the level of violence on this planet. They turn everything into some sort of convenient narrativebut never think in terms of hard reality.

They do not actually understand what murder is.

It is not a fodder to bring up ratings or circulation.

It is not about puking out endless murder shows of wives getting offed by their philandering husbands.

It is not a cause célèbre.

It is not some hypothetical construct.

It is not gossip.

It is a tragic never-ending nightmare that doesn't stop with laws, prisons, police, courts, therapy, or gun control.

Yet the Washington Post goes into full manipulation overdrive with this propagandistic drivel, with some self-serving idea that the killing of journalists in Annapolis was some sort of attack on women -- and "newspapers." Nice try.

No, you have a violence problem, and now it hits your demographic.

You are not special. At all. It is not worse because it was reporters. You are not some noble martyrs -- you have been not just exploiting murder to sell a product for decades -- you always liked to play up when some pretty white woman got slaughtered by her psycho cheating man.

And I am not even going to discuss the number of wars the press had demanded over the decades.

You call for bombing of people. Let us not pretend that other people's deaths aren't as important as yours. My grandmother's entire family -- including her baby sister who wasn't even a teenager -- died in concentration camps. This whole violence thing has been happening with global apathy for a long, long time.

But when you are the ones who face that same violence, you howl and try to milk it for everything that it's worth.

Violence strikes the wealthy as well as the poor. Sooner or later, every group becomes part of that statistic.

It was not some political statement about misogyny or about journalism. It was a ticking time bomb who finally exploded, despite prior and numerous warnings about a violent man who should not have been running loose on the streets.

Because no one wanted to actually do anything. People want to shrug things off, and just pretend there isn't a violence problem. They want that group called They do make those kinds of people go away.

And this time it hit a newspaper. It hit schools, churches, hospitals, and homes.

It hits everyone because you have a real serious problem dealing with violent people.

You either deal with a problem when you are stronger than it -- or that problem deals with you when it becomes stronger than you.

There is no politically correct narrative that aligns with reality with some message or binary solution.

So let's stop the narcissism and begin with reality for once before another group gets slaughtered just because someone wants to do it...

The New York Times loves their journalists unethical.

It was exposed that one of their journalists Ali Watkins had an affair with a source -- and that is a serious conflict of interest when she was with another publication, and when it broke out in public, the New York Times, shuffled and dawdled, and then "reassigned" her to another beat with the condescending promise that the adult woman with be assigned a "mentor."

So the Times does not just employ the immoral, but stupid, too.

The story would have made a passable porn flick twenty years ago.

If the Times stoops to have to assign babysitters for their journalists, they are nothing more than a farce.

But the Times always had a penchant to stand by their unethical ones -- meaning what they produce is mere partisan lip service, nothing more...

Why journalism cannot correct itself: Their ideological corruption consumed the core. Sorry, Whole Story you just can't get it right.

When I wrote Don't Believe It!: How lies become news way back in 2005, I had advocated that journalism should have been reinvented as an offshoot of psychology to become applied psychology. I showed how journalism's lack of knowledge in human behaviour made them vulnerable to lies, hoaxes, propaganda, and the like.

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When I went to j-school in 1995, I was first student the program accepted who had a psych degree, and I was told that no student ever applied with one, either.

I was their first.

In 2003, I also wrote a commentary in my alma mater's magazine about how journalism and psychology went hand-in-hand.

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And before I forget, I had given a speech before that about how the psychology helped the journalism -- the psych faculty at my alma matter asked to reprint my entire speech for their website, and, in turn, one editor of a psychology text asked to reprint part of that in their textbook.

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So let us get that fact out of the way.

And now that we have established that Alexandra Kitty has been publicly advocating the fusion of both psychology and journalism for over twenty years, let me also establish that when I had insisted on this fusion to both j-schools and the industry, I was ignored and rudely dismissed.

I was not dismissed by people in the Psychology field. I was not dismissed by other academics.

So it is not as if I had a bad or silly idea. I had an innovative and original idea that was accepted by others, but not the very people who needed to hear it.

The Whole Story is a web site that is just another pseudo-journalistic sophistry machine that thinks doublespeak can cover up the blatant sophistry:

Our mission is to spread the practice of solutions journalism: rigorous reporting about how people are responding to social problems.

Except it is the same old garbage repackaged with some differently-worded babble.

"Solutions journalism" is as Orwellian as one can get. Journalism is not about feeding "solutions" to people. It is about giving people facts so they can make use of those facts to find or make their own solutions -- if they wish.

Because you cannot assume you actually know what everyone's solutions will work for them.

The Big Brother vibe here is not pretty. It is patronizing and presumptuous. Even the name The Whole Story is a misleading form of authoritarian doublespeak: it makes a grand assumption that they can give a "whole story." Nice try. This is a very patriarchal mindset.

Patriarchal is all about the One. The Whole Story: we will spoon-feed it to you, children, and you need not bother to look any more than what this site presents to you.

It is a vile assumption that only goes downhill from there.

But there is one article that is particularly instructive on how journalists are trying to exploit the Age of Propaganda. The very title itself says it all:

Complicating the Narratives

What if journalists covered controversial issues differently — based on how humans actually behave when they are polarized and suspicious?

So right off the bat, we see a very deliberate skewing that is instructive and is trying to rig a board.

"How humans actually behave when they are polarized and suspicious?"

Wow.

That is a very distorted and loaded assumption, which is doublespeak for "how can we persuade people who voted for Trump to think the way we want them to think so we can go back to lording over people the way we thought we did in our glory days?"

It goes back to the same obsessive journalistic tantrum of November 2016: journalists were going to swagger in, tell the little people to vote for Clinton, and they would listen. All of them. Every single one.

Everything spewed from US journalism since that election has a single mandate of getting back at the man who proved that journalism is no longer a thing. It is the reason the profession has zero credibility now.

To immediately classify people as "suspicious and paranoid" means you believe these people are mentally unbalanced

That is one hell of an assumption to blare as a headline.

It would be akin to calling a woman who was tortured and raped "suspicious and paranoid" whenever people tried to blame her for being tortured and raped because they do not want to imagine a world where anyone can be harmed out of the blue.

Right in the headline we know this is not an article to inform. It is pure propaganda that cannot even hide what it is, but thinks it has mastered the facade of neutrality.

It is no different than asking a man when did he stop beating his wife.

The article gets more manipulative with its base assumptions from there.

The very long and rambling piece begins with discussing a 60 Minutes piece that interviewed people who supported Trump and Clinton, and the writer of the article thought it was boring:

What went wrong? How could one of the most successful, relatable interviewers in American history create such uninspired television?

Uninspired? What? No Kardashians? No pundits making things "pop"? Perhaps some CGI or car chases?

Do we understand that the point of informative disciplines is not to entertain, but simply inform?

And reflect reality.

Journalism has lost its credibility, and hence, lost its power. To discuss an interview as being "uninspired" misses the mark. A corpse has uninspired behaviour -- it just lies there rotting away.

So what went wrong?

An entire profession imploded but are still too arrogant and oblivious to see it because they are still chasing after trivialities looking for inspired.

It is reminds me of house hunters to pass on a solid house that has dated wallpaper and buy the rotting bricks that has chrome appliances.

But the sophistry and backwards thinking has just begun:

As politicians have become more polarized, we have increasingly allowed ourselves to be used by demagogues on both sides of the aisle, amplifying their insults instead of exposing their motivations. 

This is "people are brainless sheep" theory that journalists believed. Politicians pander. They are not visionaries or original thinkers because if they were, they would be too novel and unfamiliar and people will not go for something untested. They are like the therapists who merely repeat what the crowds express is their primary concerns.

If people have no jobs, they are going to look for someone who promises to spark jobs. It is why politicians bribe voters with their own money: people name their price and the politician who can read the zeitgeist and ortgeist can win.

Because that is precisely why Hillary Clinton lost. She tried to (a) vote shame people into choosing her, (b) had a platform that did not speak to what certain critical voting blocs made absolutely clear they needed and wanted, and (c) then decided to insult those people who were screaming for political attention as deplorables.

If you are dependent on the goodwill of the masses to get a position of power, then you cannot risk belittling them. Clinton made the same structural assumption as the author of the drivel did, and she lost an election that should have been an easy coup for her.

Clinton's own incompetency prevented a victory. The Left should have seen it coming. Journalists should have seen it coming. Clinton keeps making the sae mistakes, but expects a different outcome.

And now people who put their money on the losing side are angry that a Sure Thing wasn't a sure thing.

There is no polarization. The people who are pretending to "resist" and be "woke" are slumbering dutifully in their own delusional fantasies because that is their own rote habit. Most of the world would celebrate if they had the same freedoms, opportunities, and prosperity as the Left is enjoying right now. There is nothing to "resist": you have a country with countless organizations, lobby groups, PR firms, social media, laws, special programs, and elections that can help people steer their politicians in the direction they choose, and they are behaving as if they are living in some destitute Third World dictatorship that has no human rights, elections, or even running water.

And who are these "resistors"?

Wealthy Hollywood actors whose careers have faded.

Rich people ranting in limos is not a "resistance."

And we have Millennials having, not any "woke" impulse, they have gotten old before their time. When you have advertisers pushing kids to grow up early, they still go through the same cycles of life, only sooner, and yet it is a youth-focussed society. Add the inflated expectations of being able to be rich and famous through social media that never materialize, and burning out youth with endless lessons and camps that focus on arts for fame, you have people with broken fantasies throwing in the towel at the age where they should be still clawing.

If you ever watched the third season of The Killing, the minor character of Twitch best reflects what happened to those twentysomethings. 

They are now having an artificially-induced premature mid-life crisis, and this champagne socialism phase is merely the same rants their parents are having about social security.

This isn't the beginnings of a social revolution, let alone a precursor to civil war.

This a rare time in history where the Left are the old burned out reactionary youth swapping places with the older Right who were using social media for different purposes. One wanted to use it for themselves to make themselves famous with a me-focussed message; the other used it to disseminate a more you-focussed message.

And journalists hedged their bets wrong, and are now trying to incite a generation who are limping their way into rocking chairs left open by older generations who got off their duffs and went to the voting stations. Youth are grousing about the government the way well-heeled retirees living it up in Florida did during brunch quaffing mimosas and downing key lime pie.

This is not a question of "polarization." This is mere societal growing pains and confusion that is happening because humans have to still adjust to the liberation of communications, otherwise known as the Internet.

Journalism is trying to exploit a mirage because they never had to actually actively think or observe their surroundings. They are banking on a write-off generation who indulge in life-sink activities on their smartphones and then honestly wonder why their lives aren't fulfilling.

This isn't a question of politics. This is a question of gullibly believing a bill of goods you are sold to pacify you in order not to ask hard questions.

Had journalism bothered to ask hard questions, we wouldn't be seeing the rapid aging and deterioration of a lost generation: they would know what was out there, and what they could realistically achieve given their talents, environment, skills, education, and attitude, and what would be a healthy timeline to have to earn their place in the world. They have now aged to be older than their own parents.

And when you age before your, anyone older than you who has an eternally youthful and ambitious disposition is painful to endure.

Those "Indigo" children are imploding, not exploding. Socialistic tendencies is not a sign of rebellion, but a sign of defeat and exhaustion, and if you have youth who are exhausted this early and when they have opportunities, supports, and comforts no other generation of the history of mankind ever had, that means they are a write-off, and it will be up to those older and younger to pick up their slack, and neither side will be able to relate to them.

We always had two groups in society: the ones who push forward, and those who retreat. That's not politics; that's the cycle of life. The only difference is the young and old have switched places, and with new generations growing up, they will not behave in the same manner because they will have the middle generation of their morality tale of what not to do.

In other words, where journalists see "polarization", what they actually see is a cycle of life. They are the ones who are trying to create polarization. Politicians pander. The public makes their demands based on their wants and needs.

It is journalists who try to present it as something binary and patriarchal, making this observation from the article a dubious one:

Long before the 2016 election, the mainstream news media lost the trust of the public, creating an opening for misinformation and propaganda. 

Creating an opening for misinformation and propaganda? Darling, the press were the creators of misinformation and propaganda.

Don't Believe It! proved that hypothesis over a decade ago.

But their verbal sleight of hand to make it sound as if journalists were some sort of victims doesn't play in the real world.

Which makes the next quote instructive:

“Conflict is important. It’s what moves a democracy forward,” says journalist Jeremy Hay, co-founder of Spaceship Media, which helps media outlets engage divided communities. “But as long as journalism is content to let conflict sit like that, journalism is abdicating the power it has to help people find a way through that conflict.”

That is an interesting assumption that journalists do not stir up conflict or have vested interests in presenting reality as conflict-based. Wars are sparked by journalistic propaganda. Many wars could have been prevented if the press presented facts than sensational brawls.

And then the arrogance explodes:

But what else can we do with conflict, besides letting it sit? We’re not advocates, and we shouldn’t be in the business of making people feel better. Our mission is not a diplomatic one.

If there is conflict, you should present the facts of it. You are not a social engineer. That's it. The mandate was always to present facts. 

Not pick sides, editorialize, or misinterpret reality.

The article is not to inform, however. It is a sell, and an indirect sell, and usually the indirect sell has a purpose: to try to persuade people into a bad deal. If the sell was a positive one for the audience, then just spit it out.

And the sell of the article comes like this:

To find out, I spent the past three months interviewing people who know conflict intimately and have developed creative ways of navigating it. I met psychologists, mediators, lawyers, rabbis and other people who know how to disrupt toxic narratives and get people to reveal deeper truths. They do it every day — with livid spouses, feuding business partners, spiteful neighbors. They have learned how to get people to open up to new ideas, rather than closing down in judgment and indignation.

Yes, speaking to patriarchal authorities who have had a very bad history of brokering lop-sided deals. For anyone who had to go up against authorities with any of those professionals, you know going in that those people are not going to step on the toes of institutions where they have to keep having business to do with them long after your problem is resolved by decree.

So, in other words, here is a reporter trying to advocate for a pro-authority status quo.

Let's go back to the good old days, kids, where journalists had clout, told the Great Unwashed what to do, and they would do it without question, regardless of what a bad deal it was to them.

It is an indirect approach for a reason.

It is not impressive to speak with Establishment-enablers for months. 

That is appealing to authority.

What journalists have always been doing.

And here is an article pretending to do something different than other ones.

But the author must love the way she writes:

I’m embarrassed to admit this, but I’ve been a journalist for over 20 years, writing books and articles for Time, the Atlantic, the Wall Street Journal and all kinds of places, and I did not know these lessons. After spending more than 50 hours in training for various forms of dispute resolution, I realized that I’ve overestimated my ability to quickly understand what drives now people to do what they do. I have overvalued reasoning in myself and others and undervalued pride, fear and the need to belong. I’ve been operating like an economist, in other words — an economist from the 1960s.

Memo to Amanda Ripley: you obviously did not learn a single thing in those fifty-plus hours. Not one. You are doing the same thinking you did before, and the same thinking that destroyed journalism.

Then she pulls the same studies way too many writers use as a hack:

For decades, economists assumed that human beings were reasonable actors, operating in a rational world. When people made mistakes in free markets, rational behavior would, it was assumed, generally prevail. Then, in the 1970s, psychologists like Daniel Kahneman began to challenge those assumptions. Their experiments showed that humans are subject to all manner of biases and illusions.

Kahneman and Tversky were two psychologists who conducted flawed, but not entirely useless studies. Their work on heuristics was my first psych essay I wrote as a first year undergrad so that I wouldn't have to be a guinea pig in a grad student's experiment. When a writer wants to sound as if they know something, they break out those names, without questioning the studies. It is just a given to parrot them, especially out of context.

A hack or a shortcut, in other words. Just throw those names out there and you can believe you sound as if you did research and cannot be questioned. Don't kid yourself.

And notice that the author states that to believe that humans are rational is a wrong-headed thing, opening the door to the assumption that people need a better-quality of person to guide them.

Nothing new, but the author seems to be trying to find a way to repackage the old with a new spin by comparing the flawed assumption of economics (who never quite see when a crash is coming) with the dead profession of journalism:

Journalism has yet to undergo this awakening. We like to think of ourselves as objective seekers of truth. Which is why most of us have simply doubled down in recent years, continuing to do more of the same kind of journalism, despite mounting evidence that we are not having the impact we once had. We continue to collect facts and capture quotes as if we are operating in a linear world.

You are not having the same impact because the Internet broke down your gates. If an isolated town has but a single restaurant, everyone will go there, no matter what slop is being served. Open a dozen more who a superior menu and choices, and the old dive goes out of business. The End.

But the sophistry takes a chilling turn:

If we want our best work to have consequences, we have to be heard. “Anyone who values truth,” social psychologist Jonathan Haidt wrote in The Righteous Mind, “should stop worshipping reason.”

Social psychology is fraught with problems, which I will not go into here, but this is a clear advocation of social engineering journalism. We should stop giving facts because they are boring. We have irrational audiences who aren't listening to us, and we should stop using reason in our work, as if we ever did. 

You want to be a politician without having to run for office. You want to make decrees. that people have to obey. This is as close to being a manifesto advocating propaganda as you can get.

And it gets worse:

We need to find ways to help our audiences leave their foxholes and consider new ideas. So we have a responsibility to use all the tools we can find — including the lessons of psychology.

Hello, Ms Ripley! Why are you assuming that just because people do not believe what you believe that they live in a foxhole? How arrogant are you? How unfeeling?

Who are you to tell them what to believe? Shame on you.

#MeToo was a rebellion by women being told they live in a foxhole just because they did not want to be sexually harassed.

And if you are hoping to use psychology to help manipulate the little people, it doesn't work that way.

And the writer's penchant to quote other people as if someone else's words would bolster a shoddy argument, let me counter-quote from those fabulous punk Swedes the Hives form their song Dead Quote Olympics:

 It doesn't mean it's good 'cause you found it at the library

The article goes at length to appeal to authority and commit one confirmation bias after another. The hypothesis of this manifesto is flawed and self-serving, and everything that follows does nothing to prop it up:

The lesson for journalists (or anyone) working amidst intractable conflict: complicate the narrative. First, complexity leads to a fuller, more accurate story. Secondly, it boosts the odds that your work will matter — particularly if it is about a polarizing issue. When people encounter complexity, they become more curious and less closed off to new information. They listen, in other words.

There are many ways to complicate the narrative, as described in detail under the six strategies below. But the main idea is to feature nuance, contradiction and ambiguity wherever you can find it. 

No, the lesson is get rid of the narrative. Complexity is mere illusion and a fortress people build to deflect attention away so they will not have to change their behaviour. Nuances are grains used as a misdirection so a person gets dragged in deeper into the rabbit hole and create an illusion that a situation is more difficult than it is, and that there are bigger differences between groups than there actually is.

Just as the author of this drivel is doing with reckless abandon.

This is an ineffectual propagandist's manual on trying to manipulate people, based on a fairy princess narrative. Find out what people are thinking in order to exploit it to push an agenda. There is babble about breaking narratives, and yet the writer of this piece wants everyone else to break a narrative, save for those in her own dead profession. It is a truly chilling and mystifying piece as it is infuriating.

But it all goes back to sticking it to Donald Trump for showing the world journalism has become a sham.

Experimental psychology has many benefits, but only if it is used properly in its structure and core mandate. Ripley wants it to be some magic wand to Make Journalism Great Again.

It is a self-serving piece meant to play the same toxic games, but present it as being more enlightened: maybe if we have some psych, we can manipulate people into obeying us again.

The ship has sailed, and it couldn't speed away fast enough.

That is the reason journalism cannot correct itself: the core has been corrupted beyond repair. You don't eat rotten meat and expect to get anything of nutritional value: you are lucky if you don't die of food poisoning.

Once upon a time, you had idealists in journalism. You had beautiful souls who understood it was about facts and risked their lives to get them to people. They pushed and pushed.

You had Nellie Bly go undercover in the worst possible places to find the truth. You had Daniel Pearl who died digging for the truth. You had reporters who had no trouble with this concept.

If you had those people in a more empirical structure, their work would have been more powerful. We would be in a very different place, and Alexandra Kitty would have been happily writing a book called Why Journalism is a Beautiful Thing.

The problem stemmed from the lack of evolution in the industry, and then it became overrun with people who decided journalism was their castle and they crowned themselves kings and queens, issuing edicts to those little peons and plebs.

Journalism used to be a thing, but it's not anymore. It is articles like that one that is infuriating as it is ugly.

It is because of that horrific thinking that journalism has nothing left to give: it is diseased beyond curing.

You want to inform a public?

You need a clean slate. You need a new mandate, focus, method, structure, and goals so that it is not infected by the same corrupting arrogance and expectations of a profession that destroyed itself.

And still doesn't know it cannot be saved...

How playing the Theremin got me thinking about how to build a better way than journalism.

In the last year, I was inspired by the television show Midsomer Murders to pick up the theremin because of their distinctive theme song. I liked the sound, but it was the fact that it was the only instrument you do not touch to play.

It looks something like this.

You hook it up to an amplifier, and then move your hands around the antenna to make your music.

I have played numerous instruments over the years: organ (not my thing), guitar (my hands were always too small), violin (something I went out of my way to play badly because it was more fun), the left-handed tuba (my personal favourite that I played extremely well, and the keyboard (for my undergraduate thesis, and picked it up fast and could play by ear), but nothing was like the theremin.

The older I got, the better I could play an instrument I chose, but I realized I had a way with instruments when I deliberately mangled my violin-playing to tweak my nose at my teacher at the time. My mom knew I wanted to learn the violin as a hobby, but my teacher didn't understand that not everyone wanted a career in it. I got good at making sound effects with it, and enjoyed the experimentation. My protests turned into real audio experimentation.

But my teacher cringed at my playing. I learned to never play the same bad way twice. You'd think she'd clue in that maybe I wasn't an unteachable ditz, but someone who could get worse in creative ways every week. I never made the same alien noise twice. She had a "talk" with my mom who clued in what I was actually doing, and became amused by the complaints. My teacher thought my mom was clueless to not to see how "serious" it was. She thought my subversive musical protests were adorable, and didn't put a kibosh on my lessons, wanting to hear what ungodly and comical noise I was going to play at my next lesson.

I could play music on the violin. but it came to the point I no longer wanted to play songs, but sounds. The violin and I were partners in mischief. I was a very well-behaved young lady -- but the violin allowed me to express myself in a more snarky way the same way a puppet allows a ventriloquist to have something else unleash his sarcasm. My puppet was the violin, and it was game for it all.

The tuba was different. I loved the tuba and the tuba loved me. I would love to take it up again as I miss it.

When I began to play the theremin, it was as if my two great instrumental loves came together: the distinctive noises of the violin meshed with the simplicity of musical sound of the tuba. I am picking up as quickly as I did the keyboard, too.

But it is an odd instrument to play. It is literally hands off, and how you move your hands and where takes awhile to master as is controlling the sound you produce.

As I began to play, it got me thinking about why journalism can't get it together: they have no control over their own noise. They are entrenched in narrative, wanting to meddle in how their audiences ought to think about things and different people.

That isn't their place. That's social engineering and deliberately rigging perceptions to generate a desired outcome, no matter whether or not that outcome would hurt the very people who are supposed to see the world a certain way.

The theremin is all about frequency and having a feel for those frequencies. It forces you to literally touch sound and move it. You don't feel those frequencies with your hands -- but you feel it emotionally.

You are literally sculpting sound -- and it completely gets you to understand your perceptions and your senses in a completely different way.

It is all counter-intuitive, but only because we are so trained by the rules and routines of traditional instruments that the revelation that there are other ways to make music.

And if journalism cannot reorient itself, then why not create a system that is made to reorient your senses, perceptions, and interpretations of reality?

I discovered it can be done -- and I have done it.

Journalism is yesterday's method: the method that is no longer in tune with a changing world. 

Creating a new method opens new worlds and ideas to us -- something we can embrace as our world suddenly opens up a whole new universe for us to explore -- and chronicle as we hear every note and song the deepest truths of that universe has always wanted to give us, but never could as we were led to believe our world was small, predictable, and shackled by the narrow narratives and roles journalism told us were divine and unchanging reality...

When the winds of war spoke to me, I didn't fear its fury: Liberating information from the monopoly of journalism.

We can be creatures of habit, and it is all too easy to get stuck in a rut.

All the signs that we ought to be trying to break away from the shackles of rote complacency are always screaming all around us, but there is comfort in being able to predict things by repeatedly doing the same things in the same way. You think you know the results, and that must mean we are smart.

Until the day something happens that shows just because we are slaves to habit, doesn't mean reality is confined in the same way -- and we do the same things, but instead of bringing us predictable results, it throws us into chaos.

Our theory is proven wrong.

War is an extreme circumstance where there is nothing but broken theories amid the ruins of chaos. One day, you are walking home form work to your family at your house; the next, your family has been rounded up and slaughtered, and your house has been bombed into rubble -- and to add insult to tragedy, the people who did it blame you because you are so evil that you had it coming.

Did your habits see this storm coming? How did predicting the world around miss this turn of events?

Did you feel the winds of war? Did they speak to you?

Or did you turn your head away, fluffing it off?

That is what happened to journalism. The winds of war screamed at them over the years, but they ignored it.

They ignored women, treating them as eye candy -- just look at magazine covers that had for decades had women showing a plunging neckline gratuitously while the men wore dashing three piece suits.

They ignore people who weren't Caucasian, always in some dismissive, patronizing manner.

They also ignore people under thirty, having headlines such as "Are your children safe at school?" and not "Are YOU safe at school?"

It created rage as innocent people were maligned. Richard Jewell was a security guard whose quick-thinking helped a lot of people when there was a bombing in Atlanta during the Olympics...but once the police decided he was guilty because he was a little different than the scripts, he was painted a villain until reality set in, but the damage was done, and he did die young.

The press didn't tell people about the press releases they used in war zones. They didn't tell them a lot of things. Hoaxes were reported as fact, but people's suffering wasn't making the news.

The Internet allowed people to finally talk without having the press filter and interpret their points of view.

The winds of war spoke to the profession of journalism, but they didn't hear the fury.

And they lost their way, and their credibility.

But we have a black hole. We have a single model of fact-gathering for a general audience, and it was one that was tone deaf to those ill winds.

Reality and truth -- the two things we need to know to navigate through the world, are not always easy to find. Journalism was supposed to wage a war against lies in order to liberate the truth, but when the industry ignored those winds, it showed they were slaves to their own habits and rote routines.

When the winds of war spoke to me, I didn't fear its fury.

I had a piece of my mind to say to it.

There were injustices being ignored because it was more important to applaud someone with fake hair and a dress they rented on the red carpet than save from torture and abuse.

There were grifters getting accolades as they stole millions of dollars, bankrupting entire cities and ruining families forever.

There were First Nations women getting slaughtered without anyone noticing in my own country, and it was going on for years without anyone doing anything to stop it.

There were so many fallen fellow human beings, and no one could hear their screams.

The winds of war's rage drowned those voices, and I had had enough.

I heard those winds loud and clear.

And then I saw the fury was just smoke and mirrors.

And there was a way to confront those winds early enough to stop those wars from exploding.

It meant breaking the old habits of journalism, and then building some other system that took those winds into the equation.

No one should ever ignore the fury. No one should ever fear it, either.

But we have to liberate the truth from lies to see reality -- so we can make plans to make the reality of tomorrow kinder than it was yesterday.

In order to do that, it takes breaking habits today...

Kintsugi, Persian Carpets, and the art of creating an alternative to journalism.

I am known mostly for my writing, but I am also an artist, and my main passion is Kintsugi.

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I combine different broken elements and use alcohol ink and other metal objects I make as I am also a metalsmith.

Kintsugi means "fusing with gold" in Japanese, and it is an absolutely brilliant art form in that it is almost the only one with an actual philosophy attached to it.

The no mind philosophy that flaws are to be embraced, and the history and usefulness of an object is to be respected, or as one Kintsugi artist has said, broken is better than new.

I also am a fan of the other art form with an embedded philosophy, Persian carpet making, where the makers deliberately put in a flaw as so not to offend the Creator.

These two forms are essential for those who are innovators and visionaries because it teaches us that we do no ignore flaws and that we never fear to incorporate flaws in our work. You deal with the reality of the broken. You do it with humility. You have pieces you put together with a noble metal. You create art, but as the Art Nouveau artists reminded us -- you create something practical and useful with it all.

Bravery compels us to create knowing we will make mistakes -- but we still create something beautiful and complex. Pragmatism compels us to put something back together -- and make it better and more valuable than it was before.

Journalism never had art, let alone philosophy or even philosophical art. It was always cold and harsh.

And with an assumption that you had to be without flaw in order to expose other people's flaws, which is absurd. You express, even if your grammar is less than perfect. You ask questions even if you do not know the answers ahead of time.

Journalism still tries to pretend it is without flaw -- meaning it is not just offending the Creator -- but also competing with the Creator.

You cannot lord over a society that you live in. You are part of it, and you have your flaws -- but you still notice and address your own mistakes as you dig for facts.

Humility is essential as if the love for creating something new, or re-inventing something old. Both are to be cherished.

And both have wisdom and stories to tell.

An alternative to journalism is one that requires not just a scientific methodology, but also an artistic one. Trees are beautiful (the art), but clean our air and give us life (the science).

We always need reminders of that balance and not veer too far one way or another. We find common ground on two seemingly opposite elements, and from there, we weave a whole together to move forward as One and as the Infinite.

One as a Persian carpet. The Infinite as a Kintsugi plate. There needs to be a philosophy and then a psychology behind it.

Because art compels you to celebrate different media, colours, textures, styles, techniques, and expressions. You don't want just a white painting: you want more than one brush stroke or scenery.

Journalism didn't just push away the science, it belittled the art to its absolute devastation -- but we do not have to make the same mistake ever again -- because this world may have its flaws, but we can always get better because in the end, the world is beautiful, and it sings...

Breaking the tropes and stereotypes that journalism. entrenched.

How many times does the press write a headline Grandmother mugged.

That's all she is to the press: someone's elderly nana.

She is a woman. It doesn't matter that she is a grandmother.

Grandmother skydiving is also a common soft news story as if there is something newsworthy about an older woman taking a physical risk.

If she were treated as a woman, would it even make news?

Of course not. The story implies everyone in that age cohort sits in a rocking chair and knits.

F.R.E.E.D. does not play into tropes and stereotypes. It reports facts. If a pattern emerges, it is something to note and cover, and if it is an outlier, that is also of importance.

But it does not make assumptions about people based on age, gender, race, and the usual offensive preset notions that have yet to be empirically proven...

Finding the balance.

How do you go about finding the truth?

For many people, it is finding meme posters that confirm their beliefs.

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Journalism forgot it did its best by not pandering to an audience's biases.

It couldn't sustain itself with the Internet, and then tried to out-opinion forums and tweets.

F.R.E.E.D. is about balance and staying in the core. It is radical centrism that creates a map. Where people choose to travel is up to them, but the point is not to rig a map, but to reflect the surroundings...

Building an alternative to journalism requires a sense of levity, even in darkness.

Humour is often misused to put down people, as well as ridicule their beliefs and shame them for their actions.

It was one of Saul Alinky's Rules for Radicals, and everything from The Daily Show to Saturday Night Live to even late night talk shows do nothing but use humour as a weapon.

False humour has a thread of arrogance: it makes assumptions that the comedian knows everything and can make decrees of what is acceptable and what is not.

It is pure patriarchal.

F.R.E.E.D. uses constructive levity to show facts and building a map of solutions -- and more than one.

There is no sink or swim fallacy. There is no forced choice. There is no fear-mongering or shaming.

It is about bringing rationality without the arrogant pecking order assumptions to it.

It is not a comedy routine. It is not about trivializing serious issues.

But it is about opening paths to reveal new facts, and giving enough time and space for rational and emotionally literate reflection...

Getting back to the primal.

It is easy to over-intellectualize a person or situation. Journalists are doing nothing but over-intellectualizing their collapse right now, using every scary story they can conjure. They are merely the middle man spewing press releases that can be directly given to people through social media.

But war propaganda doesn't work through over-intellectualization. It works by manipulating our most primal instincts.

F.R.E.E.D. explores that realm. It is a system of finding truths with emotional intelligence, bringing rationality and preventing manipulation by dealing with our primal core.

It begins with the base and works its way up, and uses facts that speak to more than just the intellectual, but the primal.

How safe are you? How much can a family thrive in a given climate? Those are the questions F.R.E.E.D. begins to answer in a direct and straightforward way without manipulation or terrorizing news consumers in the bargain...

Journalism is dead, but that doesn't mean an alternative cannot be created to reflect a different world.

For all the talk about resistance and rebellion, it is truly remarkable how by-the-numbers people are. 

Let's take journalism, for example.

I worked as a journalist. I covered the business and ethics of journalism. I even wrote books about the problems plaguing journalism.

Books that sit in the libraries of Ivy League universities. Books cited in numerous other books and academic articles.

I have studied this profession for more than twenty years, and I have seen more than its decline.

I have witnessed its collapse.

Was the collapse necessary? Absolutely not. Was it preventable? Yes, completely.

What killed journalism. I outline it all in my book When Journalism Was a Thing.

I have had people read it and then get in some sort of bizarre denial mode: it can't be that bad, they say.

Except I use actual facts and plenty of them to back up my observations. Yes, it really is that bad, even if that is an inconvenient truth for you.

As for who killed journalism, the answer is simple: journalists. They were not vigilant. They were not innovative. They still think "Digital is the future."

No, digital is the present. It has been for the last twenty years. Some other medium is the future.

Why and how journalism destroyed itself can be gleaned from all three of my books: the first two read like a doctor giving a grim diagnosis to a patient who refuses to listen. The latest reads like a coroner handing in an autopsy report on the same patient who thought he was very healthy.

Journalism is no longer a thing. That industry was always sloppy, and its refusal to re-invent itself caused its collapse, but now there is an information void. We don't have an alternative. No one has bothered. Citizen journalism is the even sloppier and less disciplined version of journalism, and if the legacy press made fatal errors, the amateur version is making the same errors, only worse.

But we need that alternative, and it is something I discuss a lot here on my main website.

It is absolutely crucial for a younger generation to understand what they have been denied because the old model of journalism failed them.

And it is absolutely crucial for people like me to use my observations, expertise, and unique skill set to bring alternatives when I very well know how badly the old model failed us all...

Journalism made its own crisis. F.R.E.E.D. is the clean slate

Bob Schieffer has a lot of nerve with a temper tantrum disguised as a speech.

He is behaving as if journalism was a divine and godly profession that could never be replaced or that democracy is threatened if it must suffer the consequences of its own follies:

The crisis in American journalism, Schieffer says, is really a national security issue. "If people don't understand why the government takes the policies that it takes, it's very difficult to build support for those policies.

Journalism cribs from press releases. It does not verify information. It reports on trivialities with greater importance than the most pressing issues it gleefully ignores.

Yes, the public needs information, but journalism is the antiquated way of giving it to them.

It is a monopoly model that remained static and it has sparked wars, meaning journalism is a threat to national security.

The Guardian is still stuck in the same rut. They are the first spouse who cannot believe their mate upped and walked away, thinking people cannot live without them. People do not need a free press: they need a superior method of getting information.

We have all sorts of crying about how journalism is under attack and it is all a Very Bad Thing.

And all the rumours, innuendoes, propaganda, lies, hoaxes, and the like that were reported as news was a Very Worse Thing.

The Toronto Star is throwing the biggest and most melodramatic hissy fit of them all, claiming journalists are being demonized leading to a toxic atmosphere.

Yes, Toronto Star, you should know all about demonizing people all sorts of people of various nationalities, religions, and the like. What goes around comes around.

Journalism is a profession filled with clueless people who think they are beyond reproach. They are used to being king-makers and telling people what to think and how to think about it.

That's not today's reality.

It is very much like an old sexist ad that no longer plays.

sexist ad.jpg

Show news consumers that it is a journalist's world.

This delusional thinking will never change. The habit was set, and those in the profession were rewarded for far too long to see that once a shift has happened, there is no going back.

They are stuck in the past. 

But the world has moved on, and it needs a form of information dissemination that reflects that new world.

F.R.E.E.D. was created in this era. It is not beholden to the glory days and the rules created by it..

Journalism never had to be in crisis. It willfully chose it. It was a series of conscious decisions to ignore the reality and truths of the world. No one tricked them. No one forced those choices. No one kept them in the dark about.

Now they want not just a bailout, but they want to go on being oblivious, and even frighten people into sticking with their broken system.

There is no need to '"demonize" journalists: they created their own demons all by themselves, never listening to people who warned them, and never looking past their own wicked egos.

F.R.E.E.D. has none of that baggage or stench to impede it. It is a tabula rasa and a method created with the innovations and breakthroughs that have unfolded -- the same ones that journalism looked down on and ignored.

Their loss is F.R.E.E.D.'s gain...