Memo to New York Times: Who shilled for war more than you? Weapons of Mass Destruction? That was YOU. Enough about Facebook, you jealous tyrants.

The Gray Lady's anti-Facebook temper tantrum continues, with this propaganda fear-mongering:

Where Countries Are
Tinderboxes and
Facebook Is a Match

False rumors set Buddhist against Muslim in Sri Lanka, the
most recent in a global spate of violence fanned by social media.

The New York Times should have just gotten Judith Miller to write that diatribe with the headline, "Facebook: The Real Weapon of Mass Destruction."

Who sparked more wars than the press by just cribbing from press releases, and with rumours, bad and skewed information, and flat-out lies? The first Gulf War sparked when the babies and incubators hoax was reported as true. How about the fun and games Ruder Finn had spreading brazen illogical lunacy during the Civil War in the former Yugoslavia that the New York Times swallowed and regurgitated?

There should have been many New York Times' reporters sitting in The Hague for the bloodshed they enabled and outright caused. Do not think that everyone has forgotten.

Let us not pretend we never had such a thing as tensions, clashes, and war -- and that happened before the invention of the wheel and discovery of fire.

Gray Lady, stop blaming Facebook, and trying to use this as a way manipulative way to try to get back the power you squandered peddling lies.

Because you do not have the actual intelligence to fool all of the people all of the time...

 

Why journalism cannot come to grips with their demise.

Michael Goodwin has an interesting article in Imprimis about how the 2016 US Presidential race harmed journalism, and although there is much to go for it, Goodwin doesn't get it. Journalism had it easy for one reason: they owned the flow of information and speech, and he misses this point from the get go:

I’ve been a journalist for a long time. Long enough to know that it wasn’t always like this. There was a time not so long ago when journalists were trusted and admired. We were generally seen as trying to report the news in a fair and straightforward manner.

People had no choice back then. They gave not so much their trust, but their goodwill to the press. They complained about coverage even back then, but as there was an alternative, they let many things slide.

But the second they could bypass the press, they did so as fast as they could.

That's when journalists began to panic, and I agree with Goodwin that legacy media, such as the New York Times did go down the propaganda gutter -- but the difference was they were so focussed on regaining power that they forgot to hide their true motives: they weren't covering the news: they were rigging the flow of information to get the outcomes they thought worked int heir favor.

They could not keep up pretences and fight to reclaim their past clout at the same time.

Donald Trump won because he tweaked his nose at the press -- he has an uncanny ability to read the pulse of the collective -- something good sales people can do with ease -- and he used that untapped energy to win. He did what people wanted to do to the news media for decades, but couldn't.

It is like the servants being forced to listen to putdowns by their employers, and then go spit in their food.

Trump spat in the press's food in font of the world -- and the world cheered.

He merely stated what people had thought for years, but were too terrified of saying it.

The press saw Trump as a joke and dismissed him the way they dismissed all those broken down unemployed people in the Rust Belt -- the press created a kinship, but it was Trump who could read the crowds and the press and ride on those wavelengths.

He used Twitter to show how useless and powerless the press truly was, and now that same press is in a tizzy because they were exposed for being unworthy of the power they once held.

There are points going for Goodwin's piece, but his optimism blinds him in one significant way: he thinks journalism can be resurrected, but it cannot.

Journalism is unfixable and too corrupted. It is antiquated and not aligned with reality or the current state of technology and the world. Worse, journalists had a taste of that power and they will always be scheming to get that power back -- and that's not the point of their jobs. It is not about issuing royal decrees: it is about informing people with facts.

You cannot go home again. Journalism had problems long before the US election: what Trump did was hammer the final nail in the coffin, but the body in that coffin was already decomposing when he hammered.

What we need is an alternative to journalism -- something that gets away from the old rot so we do not have to have a replay of the ugly propaganda and social engineering that has held the world back for far too long...

Journalism's looking for free labour continues -- Big Brother style.

I love this headline for this article from the CBC:

Help CBC News investigate political ads on Facebook

How much are you paying for people doing your work for you? Oh, that's right, nothing.

ProPublica is behind this one, and has a similar headline to a similar article:

Help Us Monitor Political Ads Online

ProPublica launches a “PAC” to scrutinize campaign ads on Facebook.

What this extension is a way for media companies to monitor your online habits, without having to pay people a dime. How noble of you to exploit people's fears and labour as you get to look at what people are looking at so you can tailor-make propaganda in the name of being "journalists."

Nice try.

Remember -- ProPublica was founded by Democrat billionaires.

They aren't that rich for nothing, kids.

The New York Times pulled the same stunt during the 2016 president election -- and Trump still won despite the Big Brother monitoring of the partisan flock.

This is the sort of thing journalists howl at when other people do it -- but then they just do the same thing.

If they want to do some market research -- then they can pay for it like everyone else...

New York Times wins a Pulitzer for a story they suppressed since 2004.

Journalists love, love, love to give themselves awards and prizes. two_medals

These days, these awards mean nothing.

The New York Times won the big one for their "story" on Harvey Weinstein.

They had to share it with Ronan Farrow, who actually began the investigation before they did.

But they didn't exactly earn this one for a very big reason.

They passed on the same story in 2004 when Sharon Waxman's piece was killed.

Why didn't she win the Pultizer?

Because she was silenced -- and then the newspaper turns around and wins an award for something they were perfectly aware of for over a decade.

That's how much these awards are worth...

George Stephanopoulos interviewing James Comey: A study in partisan reportage.

I find it interesting that George Stephanopoulos interviewed former FBI Director James Comey, who was fired by Donald Trump and now is shilling his latest book. He was a political operative for the Clinton regime and Senior Advisor to the President in the 1990s. That is pure partisanship on ABC's part, and deliberately so. This isn't done for information sake, but to pander to the Left.

The atmosphere is interesting. The New York Times' sniffed in their book review that Comey's book was "very persuasive." The review is pure propaganda, but this is about Comey.

The FBI does go through a vigorous screening process; so I do not believe Comey is a stupid man. He would have to be cunning to make it that far only to be checkmated by a more cunning man. Comey played a game of chess, but his opponent was playing Go. I do believe he is spinning a yarn to justified his firing -- which I don't blame him -- but the vindictive and very careful spinning with hints is beneath him. He is playing in the gutter, obviously, and now it is akin to two bratty and spoiled brothers having a perpetual slap fight with each other.

The press is more than just salivating over it: they are being downright patronizing, with The Daily Beast instructing the little people how to watch and stream it, though they are not the only ones. The New York Times also has little faith in their readers' intelligence, proving crib notes of the interview.

Vox, ever falling for basic stunts, are babbling about Trump's tweets on it, even though those are nothing more than misdirections that really should have been ignored over a year ago.

As for the interview itself, it is not actually newsworthy. It is not explosive, but typical of what I would expect someone who isn't used to be scrutinized getting flayed in public: justifications of his actions, wallowing with self-pity, calling his former boss all sorts of dirty names as he gossips, and trying to retain some dignity in a sordid and unprecedented affair as he is assuring the legacy media that he and his family are Hillary Clinton supporters. Everyone else is wrong, and he is holier-than-thou, and he is full of excuses.

He does parse his words as he chooses them very carefully. When I worked as a journalist, that was always a huge red flag that the indirect approach was used to paint a narrative without direct proof; otherwise, the person would give you actual proof. I never liked slippery sources whose every word must be put on a scale and examined under a high-powered microscope.

The only difference between Comey and Trump is that Comey uses verbal sleight of hand to fight dirty, while Trump blusters on Twitter to achieve the same ends. I do not have confidence in either man's account. At all.

People are watching, hoping Comey can offer some new dirt so they can lose their minds, but ABC is pushing this as an "exclusive event", when it is an advertorial interview promoting a book. I see two huge alpha male egos clashing, and the loser of that territorial skirmish reduced to melodrama.

But I can understand why the Beltway had a meltdown with Trump's victory: they are all broken in, and used to go through the motions as they memorized the scripts -- and with a spoiler blustering in, all their old routines and rules have been thrown out the window, and now that they can no longer rely on rote hacks, their façade of superiority has been exposed as such.

Comey was a bit player in this sucker circus, and one of the earliest acts to get the boot: the interview ran too long, and was pure theatre -- and a very boring one at that...

The new beggars: How journalists try to exploit their own incompetence.

If you look at many journalism sites and their various barnacles known as "organizations", you will see a lot of begging for money. A lot.

Not just obnoxiously begging for money, but a manipulative little sob story how giving your money is absolutely essential for democracy to survive.

Screen Shot 2018-04-15 at 8.06.40 PM

And if it isn't begging for donations, it is a demand and threat to subscribe.

Screen Shot 2018-04-15 at 8.11.35 PM

This is a gambit: if they cannot get funding through advertising and people wanting to subscribe, then instead of making the necessary changes, passively take out your tin can and howl for cash.

And despite the circulation and viewership declines, the profession thinks a non-profit model will save them.

The New York Times certainly thinks so, making it a habit of musing about it here about the Guardian, openly cheerleading it here, and now doing free advertising for Report for America here.

These methods aren't working because the same corrupt elements are at play. The non-profit is a retreat strategy: they want to do the same thing, but trying to spin the optics to make it seem they are some sort of noble civil servants, and not broke and inept blowhards who still do not see what they have done to the profession.

It is obvious that this is a ruse to exploit their own incompetence into something noble, but to a dead profession, they will play any trick to pretend an archaic system to information corruption can be brought back to life...

When journalists do not know how to report on their own industry.

When I worked as a journalist, most of my stories concentrated on the business of journalism. It was not exactly an easy gig. There was a lot of egos and even more secrets, and that usually hinted that things presented were far more shaky and sketchy in reality. And those hints always turned out to be right.

The business end was always rickety. There was always some sort of scheme to prop up the true health of the industry, and it was always presented with a sunny spin. For instance, free newspapers were counted as part of the circulation, which was a very dodgy gambit meaning that those stacks of unread papers were counted as readership.

Journalism's fortunes were already on unstable ground back then, but now, it is in a free fall.

The journalism part and the business part are two separate problems, but because the journalism side reports on their business side -- and the business side has no qualms misusing the journalism side for self-promotion, score-settling, and lobbying, it is a good idea to look at how that toxic dynamic contributed to the profession's collapse.

For example, the New York Times has one of their gushy Great Man profiles on new Los Angeles Times owner Patrick Soon-Shiong. The puff piece is typical of how the Times perpetually shuts off its brain when doing free ad copy for a real or perceived Titan of Industry.

I go over this in more detail in my book, but the Times has a very bad track record of doing these kind of kid glove pieces, only for the test of time to prove they should have been more skeptical and critical in their coverage.

The headline is troubling to me as someone who has seen this game before:

L.A. Times’s New Owner Plans Big Moves. First Up, Relocating to the Suburbs.

When I wrote a profile of one up-and-coming newspaper owner, he tried to use the identical angle on me: "big plans" and some cutesy colour of how his wife thought they would have to "remortgage the house" for him to buy those pricey newspapers. I didn't bite at either angle, and his tenure was fairly short-lived, and proved to be the tip of the iceberg of a much more serious problem.

But never expect the Times to do anything that resembles genuine research.

The exit of Michael Ferro is presented in a threadbare manner: there is much more to say, but don't expect a Tronc property such as the Tribune to confess anything in regards to their own dirty laundry. Bloomberg's piece scratches the surface, referring to Ferro's tenure as "controversial", but what really went down is not going to be examined with any authenticity. Even the Wall Street Journal's article is milquetoast, calling his time as "short but rocky".

Not that other news media has a clue. WBUR attempts to look at the collapse at local news, but nary a word on how the profession sowed the seeds of their troubles themselves. It is shallow, self-serving, and cannot do a thing to resurrect the dead profession.

It is not a well-oiled machine: one side of the equation should help improve the other side, but it is often used to hide the true state of affairs from the public. Journalism needed a better method, but when your own chroniclers of reality cannot unearth the reality of their own, there were doomed to crash and burn so horribly...

There is no more "great journalism". There comes a point when you have to face the truth about journalism.

Journalists are like the brat in this viral video who will eat an onion, insisting that it is an apple. [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ORdkyI43IRE?rel=0]

She is suffering, but no way is she going to admit the obvious.

That's the state of journalism.

They are antiquated, reactionary, primitive, corrupted, and kaput.

So when you have a dead profession tainted by denial and narcissism, they will scream that everything is wonderful.

You see the implosion. Dean Baquet, Executive Editor of the New York Times, will talk about a "crisis" in journalism, and how this is its "Golden Age" of it.

It isn't a golden age, and we are well beyond a crisis.

When you have journalists parroting press releases, you know the profession isn't an authentic one, and when you are mandated with chronicling reality, not being authentic is a very bad thing.

fb_img_15234484102221789962014.jpg

Instead of looking inward, journalists are spinning a lie about "fake news" being something outside of journalism. Nice try, but I wrote the book disproving that silly hypothesis -- three times over.

97

But journalists cannot help themselves, always spinning what they do as such a wonderful and selfless thing.

The Chicago Sun-Times chirping that their rivals Chicago Tribune's drive to unionize is all about "doing great journalism" is laughable.

It is about saving their jobs, not realizing unionizing in a dead profession won't do the trick.

Journalists will put up with the stench of their profession's needless death rather than admit the obvious.

It is time for a change.

And the time is now...

Watching journalism's implosion on Drudge.

Matt Drudge has been America's Editor in Chief for a couple of decades now -- the way old school newspaper and magazine editors used to rule back in the days when journalism was a thing -- or even Don Hewitt did on 60 Minutes. His machine has an uncanny pulse on the zeitgeist. The Left never had an equivalent rival or colleague because they are not in tune with reality the way he is.

But he is The One. We don't have a female Drudge, a black Drudge, nor do we have any foreign Drudge anywhere else on the planet.

We are talking about my entire adult life, and not even a Millennial Drudge or a AI Drudge.

There is only one Drudge.

And his methods are so effective, that the destruction of journalism doesn't impact him.

If journalism had a pulse the way he did, they would still be in the game.

But their arrogance is debilitating. They don't see that he doesn't use a cheesy motto about how important journalism is. He doesn't shake people down for donations.

He cuts to the chase, highlighting stories from various media outlets in a low-key and minimalist style.

So it is interesting to see what he picks for stories about journalism.

The stories, not surprisingly, chronicle its own implosion.

For example, the Right-leaning Townhall had this column:

The Liberal Press Rebelled Against Reality - and Lost

That's about half-right. The Right-winged outlets aren't exactly clued in, either. Even the article itself reveals its lack of news savvy:

These journalism students are specifically taught that they need to report on the sorrows of the downtrodden, represent the world as a fundamentally unfair place defined by poverty, disease, death; and that injustice cannot be vanquished but by rejecting traditional standards of morality. 

News is defined on reporting on what isn't working, not on what works. That's advertising. Cheerleading about a Great Man's success isn't news -- and contrary to the piece's assumption, reporters have spent a great amount of time fawning over real and imagined successes -- they built up the Kardashians. They made men such as Kenneth Lay to seem visionary and competent. Let's not pretend that we had journalists tell us where the faults in our society have been simmering. They supported Hillary's Clinton's flawed campaign, for instance, which, in fact, undermines the thesis of this opinionist.

It isn't just "leftist" vehicles that have a hard time confronting reality -- it is the rightist as well, as in the entire profession imploded, not just one faction of it.

Another very Right-leaning vehicle, the Gateway Pundit, brings up this nugget: a California senator introduces a bill that only "state-sanctioned" fact-checkers vet information going online. Obviously, this is covered by the Right, and not mentioned at all anywhere else. Aside from it being unconstitutional and makes no mention of other media, such as print or television, and it would something I would expect from those Russians that American journalists have an unnatural fear of. It seems that the government wants to control all of the information on the Internet -- and it is the reason why we will see a fifth medium much sooner than later.

Newsmax, yet another Right-wing outlet, is hiring a former Fox News Channel executive to position themselves into a more expansive presence. Despite legacy media's constant attacks on the online fringe, Newsmax is having an easier time than Breitbart that once seemed to have the definite edge with Steve Bannon.

However, fortunes come and go very quickly in this business, and the cycles of longevity keep getting shorter. Fox News' success was mostly thanks to the late and infamous Roger Ailes, who knew what would sell and then knew how to make it happen.

Perhaps sensing that the mood for social media is turning nasty, Twitter's Jack Dorsey is cultivating an image of being more meddlesome with his platform. The Fast Company story is typical fawning Great Man love -- and usually serves the Great Man's purpose than actually inform a public about anything.

The dysfunctionality is capped off with a horrible New York Times article already kicking iconic Vogue editor and current Conde Nast artistic director Anna Wintour to the curb as media speculate that she's leaving, though nothing is official -- and the source of the gossip comes from its rival the New York Post.

The headline is absolutely dreadful:

Imagining a World After Anna

Hello! She's not dead!

She is still in the world, New York Times. At least the Times chose that first picture where she is the best-dressed of the bunch, but the words chosen as well as the subject matter is not actually newsworthy.

But cluster the articles together, and a picture emerges: journalism imploded and we have anarchy. The government is trying to impose its will on Big Tech; Big Tech is trying to impose its will on its users. Fringe media has the same clout as legacy media, and everyone is just speculating.

Facts? Well, don't expect to find them in a news story. It is the reason why fringe outlets have the same weight on Drudge as the traditional outlets. Drudge did what Trump did years before: bypass the media to create his own success. In a world that is devoid of facts, but its illusion is one of having too much information, he reads the headlines the way a fortune teller reads tea leaves: there is no magic to it, just an ability to read someone's demeanour and body language to riddle out what is the problem -- and usually it is always the same problems that plague everyone.

He gets the rhythm of the world, and presents it in an easy-to-digest way.

Journalists never learned what the Internet required, and dismissed him.

And it is the reason the stories about them have turned out to be so distressingly unflattering and troubling...

And one more article that came late today from the New York Post about CBS worrying about the fallout from Charlie Rose's antics being exposed. Rose was #MeToo'd and according to the Post, those nondisclosure clauses are being used as a fortress to prevent any sins and complicity from being known to the public.

Journalists may thump their chests and pretend they are holier than thou, but when push comes to shove, their tactics are no different from those they pretend to expose...

Why journalism will learn nothing from Facebook’s privacy crisis.

The New York Post has a silly article about those pesky Millennials are not getting all scared by Facebook. They are seen as naive and their Live Out Loud philosophy means they do not care what people know about them. The implication is that nothing like that ever happened before those Facebook bad guys came along.

Not quite.

There was Farrell's Ice Cream Parlour.

f1

They compiled lists where children could give their vitals to get ice cream for their birthday.

A couple of young boys created a fake birthday boy, and when that fake boy turned of age, Selective Service sent him a reminder that he was liable for draft registration.

The boy only existed on the ice cream list.

This was 1984.

What does ice cream have to do with the military?

Having children fill out a form shouldn't give any government a clue how old they are, but the idea of personal data being used for other purposes is not new.

When the story broke, journalists were asking who else was playing those games.

And like Facebook, Farrell's said they had no idea what those lists were being used for at the time. It was a third party, after all.

Journalists don't seem to clue in that this whole using personal data for other purposes is not new.

As in totally not new.

But the press will keep trying to make it sound as if this was a Facebook thing rather than an old and reliable way of gathering information, learning nothing from history -- often chronicled in their old pages...

New York Times' Editor's grasp of journalism is out of control: Does anyone in the business understand they are irrelevant?

Journalism collapsed because those in the business never kept up with the times. They were the gate-keepers who once held all of the cards. Social media broke down those gates, but instead of seeing the depth of seriousness of their predicament, they went on as if everything was the way it was before.

They became increasingly irrelevant until the day a newbie politician used Twitter to become president of the US, and then they were no longer part of the public discourse.

Dean Baquet of the New York Times seems completely obliviousness that the world gave the Times its redundancy papers, and has the nerve to say that Donald Trump's rhetoric on journalism is "out of control."

No, it isn't. Trump saw an opportunity, and he took full advantage of it -- and won.

He didn't need journalists' collective blessing to win.

Once upon a time, if the press didn't like you, you were done. Now, it is a badge of honour, but within the foreseeable future, no one will care about even that one way or another.

Journalism is a concept that has run its course. This is not say we no longer need people finding and disseminating facts, but the model we have now is deficient, corrupt, broken, and inadequate.

Just as j-school deans have no clue, either -- and they are training people who want to enter a dead profession. They are lecturing Sinclair Broadcasting over their little promos -- and yet, it is thanks to their short-sightedness that the profession never changed or stayed relevant.

You have a rotted system that no longer functions -- and we have people in that profession blame everyone else for their woes: Trump, Russia, Facebook, hedge funds, you name it.

They never blame themselves. They think the same scripts, hacks, and cheats still work -- and because they aren't working, they want the entire world to change back to the old ways to accommodate their own life theories.

It has gone out of control. Journalists are losing their jobs in droves -- and instead of seeing what they are doing wrong -- they are still looking for scapegoats and whipping boys to take the blame.

Nothing will change. The jobs will vanish. The outlets will close.

And they will still blame everyone else except the real culprits.

The New York Times is a concept whose time has come and gone. We do not need a paper of record -- we need people who gather facts without narrative who aren't afraid of seeing reality and truth.

That is not something you will find in a dead profession, however.

It has to be made fresh from scratch...

Ideological Cleansing in an Age of Propaganda

During the Civil War in the former Yugoslavia, there was a PR-spawned and media-happy buzzword used to describe the fighting: ethnic cleansing. The term was meant to show that the region had become intolerant of other ethnicities: an area that had mixed groups would were rushing to "purify" the region. We don't use the term anymore despite other international conflicts. It never actually caught on: once the optics front was won, the term faded from our lexicon.

Except the concept itself is alive and well, and thriving on various communications platforms, from legacy media to social media.

There is no tolerance. There is no diversity. There isn't even plurality.

It is Us versus Them.

With no notion of in-between whatsoever.

It is an ideological war going on, and one with the mental maturity of a spoiled and indulged two year-old in soggy underpants. Suddenly, there is no skepticism, looking at evidence, rationality, or case-by-case examination of the facts. It pure, seething, and manipulative propaganda from both the Left and the Right, nullifying both schools of thought in the bargain.

On the one side of this little game, are men such as Tony Robbins who has decided #MeToo is a bad thing, and everyone who has claimed to have experienced workplace terrorism is doing it for self-serving reasons. There is no looking at facts. He issues an opinion as if it were divine decree, and that's that.

Anyone who disagrees must be removed from our space because they are defective -- and less than human. Hence, ideological cleansing seems like a moral and rational choice. Of course, it is irrational cowardice: we fear our beliefs will crumble; and so, we build fortresses so that we do not have to perceive the reality and truth of our weaknesses. If we do not face it, then perhaps it does not exist.

The irrationality doesn't stop there. The Atlantic decides Donald Trump -- the man who beat journalists and won the White House -- is still too stupid to have his own ideas; so naturally it is not his experience with institutions that makes him skeptical of them -- he is just a hapless and passive conduit of the 1970s.

But the New York Times opines that it is a good thing that the Denver Post is skeptical of the institution that owns them, and there is not a chance those editorial writers are a mere vessel of the decade they grew up in.

Hedge funds are bad when they own decaying newspapers and have to deal with plunging readerships and advertising revenue, but hedge fund owner Madeline Albright is just fine when she writes an Op-Ed piece for the New York Times, openly plotting to "stop Trump before it's too late" -- that's up to the citizens of the US to do at the ballot when the next election comes.

Ms Albright, you may have gotten away with those barbaric games with the Serbs, but your disgusting notions of ideological cleansing are off-putting to say the least.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1FaPuBUY558?rel=0]

But in an Age of Propaganda, people behave like robber barons: greed it good, and we must buy up as much ideological property as we can to dominate the marketplace of ideas. Monopoly of thought seems like a foolproof plan: if no one objects, then truth and reality of our ideological flaws cannot possibly exist.

Except, of course, they do exist. You cannot cleanse away truth or reality. It is the reason empiricism is essential as is the never-ending search for facts: there is always a flaw that must be discovered and dealt with. Our theories must always be tested as the world changes and expands. Not everyone's life requirements are alike, and no, one ideology does not fit all.

Journalism was supposed to prevent propaganda from overtaking publicity discourse, but then it became infected and spread the disease, corrupting ideological and political debate to the point it has become useless.

There can be no right answer when the goal is ideological cleansing. It nullifies every argument on either side of the linear divide.

It is the reason why an alternative to journalism is needed: in a world filled with fanaticism, political atheism brings common sense back into visible reality, tearing down narrative, and exposing facts, no matter how upsetting those facts happen to be.

People with billions of dollars to their name are now openly clamouring for a civil war during prosperous peace times. This is no longer moral or rational thought. It is fascism.

And there is no hack or solution from either side of the line in the sand. A map is needed, but one the ignores the narratives and finds the facts to chart a productive route to better -- and more emotionally stable places...

Journalism was never about the facts. It was always about the narrative. That's why it's own story turned on them.

Journalism was a profession that was perpetually unaware of itself. An Op-Ed piece in the New York Times is a case in point. images-2

It is an an opinion is about journalism (with the headline "Some Reflections on Journalism"), but the knee-slapper is this passage:

That, however, is not what journalists are about most of the time. Their realm is facts. Stubborn facts, the kind that bring down governments, usher barbarians to judgment. We are living a great journalistic flowering, provoked by the contempt for the truth, and often for the Constitution, of Donald Trump’s White House. In the unending task of keeping the Republic, journalists have made a difference.
Perhaps that’s what it comes down to: making a difference, in some small but important way. Sure, journalism can be a “cheap shot” when it’s self-congratulatory, or voyeuristic, smug or shallow. (“Fake news” is not journalism). The journalist evokes suffering and moves on; the suffering tends to endure.

Journalism was never about the facts. It was about stories. Narratives filled with Us and Them, with a dash of They Should Help Us.

If it was about facts, it would never be about stenography: it would be about respect for empiricism, experimentation, and studying the deeper meaning of what is a fact. There could have been a science of facts. There could have been a science of journalism.

Instead, it was about putting no effort, slapping together a fact or two, and then dressing it up with some melodramatic narrative that never aligned with either truth and reality.

Yet again, the Times peddles another some mis-reflections on journalism, and explains why the profession lost its way for a long time with no signs of ever getting better.

 

Facebook is watching you, but so are those Loyalty programs. But there is no scandal with those...

The pummelling of Facebook continues with the latest being the "Memo"; this time Vanity Fair. BBC also takes them apart here. The Atlantic seems obsessed with the shallow PR-angle with its usual sophistry it is usually churns. Contrast them to the Financial Times musing that wonders how well Big Data is when ads never seem to quite align with what you actually want or need.

But there is an aspect of modern life that has that kind of Big Data -- loyalty card programs that keep a perfect track of how much you spend, where you spend, what you buy -- and then sends offers all based on your shopping profile.

And yet these loyalty programs somehow are excused from the Big Data Scare.

But then again, Loyalty Programs are not in direct competition with traditional media.

There are no shortage of places that keep track of you -- from the banks that know where you spend your money and where to government agencies who make you fill out forms with information that they already have on file. 

But none of them are competition to the industry. If the Facebook drubbing was sincere, we'd be looking at the big picture. 

But it's not looking for noble motives -- and that insincerity is newsworthy and worth examining...

Is #MeToo making any changes? No. Why? Because you cannot change a system. You can only build a fresh from from scratch.

Contrary to ABC After School Special indoctrinated opinion, you cannot actually change a system. It creates unnatural habits, takes advantage of the weaknesses you are not savvy or strong enough to admit you have, and it establishes rigs that favour those on top of the pecking order. It will always snap back to the status quo because the content is driven by the silent structure of thought. Western society is Patriarchal in thought. It is not egalitarian in thought. It is not Matriarchal in thought.

It is all about the One, and the One in this society will always be the white male.

It is the reason why you need a replacement for journalism. It is so entrenched in Patriarchal spin that it is very oppressive to anyone who is outside this stratified system.

Look at the New York Times' profile on Barry Diller:

Barry Diller knows your weaknesses.
He knows how to intimidate you, if he wants to, or charm you, if he chooses. Because he is a taskmaster and a visionary and a billionaire, people in Hollywood and Silicon Valley pay close attention when he speaks.
He has so many vests from Herb Allen’s Sun Valley retreats for global elites that they’re taking over his closets.
“There is so much fleece,” says the chairman of IAC, laughing. “I’ve been going for 30 years.”
On this rainy afternoon, by the fireplace in the Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired stone and wood living room of his dreamy mansion, Mr. Diller is all charm, with a healthy dose of self-deprecation. He’s dressed in a red checked flannel shirt, a burgundy Hermès hoodie, baggy jeans and black Tods loafers.

Spy magazine made fun of him. The New York Times defers to him as if his word was God's. Guess which publication is still allowed to exist. And this was written by Maureen Down, the Grey Lady's highest ranking female scribe.

#MeToo has changed nothing. We now have a movement that has youth and their fears being exploited in them begging for their rights and freedoms be revoked because they don't see the simplicity of their own solution. They have their future in their hands alone, but somehow it seems easier to ask the Establishment to think for them as they restrict them.

#MeToo may be about unleashing women from the shackles of workplace abuse and rigs, but #NeverAgain is about deferring to authority. It is a conscious decision to be reactionary in mindset, meaning it seeks a Patriarchal solution to a problem that requires an alternative approach.

And who better else to be the "breakout star" to a Patriarchal movement than the white boy who swaggers and speaks in an authoritative voice.

Daniel Hogg's surname is eerily appropriate as he reminds me of George Orwell's Animal Farm. The lad could not be less original with his words and voguing, but he is the one getting to be the face and the voice -- something that #MeToo never truly had.

He is mistaken if he thinks the "people in power are shaking" -- no, Mr. Hogg, they are salivating at taking away personal freedoms of their citizens, especially when they are demanding to be enslaved just to have a mere perception of security.

This is textbook propaganda: find the white boy who wants to be the centre of attention, and then let him rant as if he were qualified to know something. Humanity has been down this path repeatedly. Nothing has changed.

And that should worry feminists. #MeToo did nothing to challenge the structure of thought -- the very rigs that always was a trapped to spring on challengers when the timing was just right, and make no mistake: it was been set off.

The Great Men are still seen as Great Men whose opinions matter -- notice that Maureen Dowd didn't interview a Great Woman about #MeToo because such an entity does not exist in Western culture.

And now, who gets the attention to an well-orchestrated trap to take away the rights and freedoms of a future generation?

The Great Man in Training.

The dead profession of journalism hasn't changed one bit. Women's battle tactics are failing their future. The propaganda hasn't budged one inch to give way to the truth and reality of an issue.

And it cannot change. If you want a better system, build a new one from scratch. Keep the rot away. Social media destroyed the gates, and now there is a void -- a perfect time to begin something new to move away from the same old stories that are nothing more than lies of convenience...

Yes, journalism covers the Elite. That is not news. That the elite still managed to destroy journalism despite their best rigs and advantages is newsworthy.

FAIR has a very interesting -- and thoughtful -- article worth reading about how journalists from publications such as the New York Times are elites themselves, meaning they walk lockstep with the robber barons they drool over as they lick their boots. This is the suffocation theory of journalism: you never allow the fresh air of new or novel theories, facts, or ideas to ever make it over the airwaves or in print; therefore you suffocate people's critical thinking skills, and they accept the staleness of bad ideas as being a natural and divine mindset that is logical, moral, and normal.

It isn't, of course, and we have seen these rigs throughout history: who had rich men decree that women were property -- and that it was God's will; so to question this very convenient power grab was just horrific and ridiculous.

And women marched to this scam for centuries, until you had enough women see the men have all the fun, money, and power, and snapped right back to their senses and then had to fight for something they should have never had to fight for in the first place.

We celebrate women who were forced to be distracted on removing rigs, when we really should be livid that these women could have spent their brains and focus on something better -- like, finding a better way to do journalism, finding the cure for cancer that doesn't involve poisoning, butchering, and torturing the sick, or improve the way we live our lives in general.

We will now be forever denied those innovations because those same women had to dedicate their entire lives on a stupid game.

To be Elite is to be a hoarder of power, control, and health. The central problem of capitalism has always been turning a blind eye on people who could bypass right based on their psychological weaknesses of (a) hoarding, and (b) pathological selfishness that manifests itself through deceptions, trickery, bullying, narcissism, anger control, cheating, and being an out and out psychopath.

Had capitalism taken mental health into consideration from the get-go, we would have a very different outcome. Capitalism rewards bad behaviour and penalizes the good.

But that was not the intent of capitalism. That was the oversight that was its unintentional flaw.

It also didn't anticipate a press who would cheerlead these kinds of destructive behaviours, and spin them to look as if these were Great Men, and visionaries.

The problem with rigs is that they are dependent on accepting rules. If someone turns over the rule, it become fragile and breaks. Break too many rules, and the rigs collapse, exposing the true nature of a system's flaws.

That's why it is important to constantly question and improve a system instead of accepting it as gospel.

The Elites, despite their every advantage, screwed their prime vehicle to spin propaganda to the masses. Journalism still collapsed because people would rather admire their social media feeds than admire people who have more money than they do.

Advantages are only there so long as everyone agrees what you possess is an advantage: dilute it or make it mundane, and then the advantage turns to a liability.

It is the reason journalism has collapsed: its intentions were corrupted from informing the people to pacifying them so that they don't start asking hard questions about those Elites.

The article brings up a few good points, but that Elites control old school journalism isn't news.

What is news is that they messed up playing their own game, anyway, and that calls the competency of an profession into question...

The Most Oblivious Place on Earth: Not even Captain Obvious can save the journalism train wreck.

What made North American journalism ultimately broke it. It is Patriarchal narrative. Journalism promised facts and information along with cogent arguments and logic as time went on, but those were just the excuses for what was the lure for the profession: the authority to set the terms of debate and the story with labelling people, elevating those who agreed with the narrative, and casting off those who didn't.

For those middle-class denizens wishing to sound learned without having the benefit of acceptable pedigree or the proper pragmatic education in the minutae complex societal dynamics, their "cheat sheet", so to speak, was newspapers such as the New York Times, where they could have the acceptable opinions on the issues of the day without having actual deep knowledge on the matter. They could nod at the right moments, and side with the "correct" side of the issue without looking like the rubes they always imagined their working class or lower class parents to be.

Times have changed, but the propagandistic spine of journalistic narrative never did. The Internet didn't just open the floodgates of a sea of previously ignored voices, it broke the monopoly the press had, forever shattering the stranglehold they had on those same middle class script followers.

And now they are, in the pages of the Op-Ed section, trying to scheme and work out how they can regain control without having to change a thing.

The latest knee-slapper piece "When Smug Liberals Met Conservative Trolls" shows just how out of touch every US publication is. The editor of Reason magazine -- a smug Libertarian rag, is dispatched to tell the little people all about it: that there is stalemate in the ideological war because the Left and the Right malign each other and won't listen to reason -- and this is why we have a growing base of political "independents."

We have always had independents. People like me are radical centrists, but we aren't radical centrists because we are sick of two pretentious political churches babbling nonsense. We aren't sandwiched between two groups of ideologue -- we rose above it for years -- the problem is, this is now a childish war for ideological control where the goal is to have all the plebs walk lockstep and applaud the "winning" ideology, but it is not happening, no one is "winning" the mind control battle; so now one side is looking at the holdouts, trying to win converts by acknowledging them, and then speaking to them, pretending to validate their existence; so maybe a strategic coalition can be formed, and then get rid of that big old meany Donald Trump so journalists can pretend they aren't in a dead profession.

Nice try. The piece is insincere on every possible level imaginable. It still is firmly entrenched Patriarchal narrative. Bringing in someone who seems non-aligned with either political side is a ploy, and a very transparent one at that.

This isn't a science fiction movie where everyone from a certain planet all look, talk, think, dress, and act the same way. Individuality and variation is normal. The Internet was a rude shock to journalists because it put out in the open what was always there all along: that people had their own beliefs in their head, and were given almost no choice in many regards; and so, they made what they could with the limited resources they were allotted. Those feelings were always there; the problem was there was no way for people to put them out in a public forum.

It also isn't as if people didn't try to tell the press of their feelings. They did. They wrote letters and made phone calls to complain, and the press either ignored them, ridiculed them, or wore them as a badge of honour for going against them.

So here is someone who is an editor of a national magazine discussing an ancient dynamic as if it were some sort of a new phenomenon. It's not.

This isn't news. This isn't some sort of jaw-dropping revelation or a new-fangled belief. This is clearly Captain Obvious speaking. This is the press still seeing the world in binary terms, but then trying to win converts in a obvious way: to court those "independents", they are spared a label such as "smug" or "troll." It is truly a shameless attempt at courting a segment that refuses to be courted, as there is an attempt to co-opt their voices.

They are independent because they do not wish to be courted or co-opted. They are not looking for applause or a clubhouse to play in: they are looking for facts and action.

And a place other than the New York Times to get informed so they can make their own decisions for themselves. They aren't going to be recruited to save a dead industry, either.

And for people like me, I am looking to create something new, not give life to something that expired a long time ago.

Is it time for the New York Times to finally ditch Opinion?

Vanity Fair has an article on how the New York Times' Opinion pages is causing "embarrassment" to their newsroom, even though their own shoddy reportage and haughty attitude doesn't embarrass them at all. They want to seem hip and with it, but they want to play it safe. They want to be on the cutting edge, but they do not want to court controversy, expect they do, expect they want the politically correct kind version of it.

They want to see their backsides on two chairs.

To be controversial means you are an outsider. When you are the Establishment, you are not an outsider. The Times wants the image of being an outside, while being an Establishment paper.

They hired and then fired Quinn Norton in a day because they wanted a safe version of her, which cannot exist. She was controversial, but that was because she had a pulse with an underground, which was her area of specialty...which made her an outsider. Wired noticed it, as did I.

The Times didn't vet her, and her politically incorrect tweets made the Times panic and fire her. They didn't have her back. She was their window-dressing, meaning if people made a fuss about their choice, she had to go.

If they had hired her to find and interpret truths and reality, they would have stuck by her, and explained that, yes, as a muck-raker, you have to get down and dirty to find those hidden truths.

They didn't, and that's all you need to know.

Once upon a time, opinions were supposed to be provoking, and not acceptable, but these days, they must be acceptable, and not provoking. The Times should get rid of the Opinion pages entirely, as they do not want to offend anyone, and opinions, by definition, will offend somebody.

They do not get what it is that they are supposed to do -- be young and brash in a familiar and innocuous way is not actually an option.

It's hedging your bets, and that's not journalism.

 

The Gray Lady is a mean ex-girlfriend: Trump, Weinstein, and now Google. Why their love affairs always turn sour.

The New York Times went all nuclear on Google in this hatchet piece. This isn't exactly objective journalism: there is an agenda as traditional media got their collective backsides whumped by Google, Twitter, and Facebook. Even the headline is kind of cute:

Critics say the search giant is squelching competition before it begins.

And who are these critics and competition? The Gray Lady, perhaps?

It wasn't always like this. In fact, the New York Times has a very interesting habit: they chase after Titans of Industry and Great Men with shameless fawning...and then somewhere along the way, the love affair turns sour, and then the Gray Lady has public tirades disguised as investigative pieces.

Which means that they ignored red flags, kept certain things to themselves, and then lash out when things go south.

Let's start with how they once loved, loved, loved, Donald Trump (I have mentioned this one before, but let's mention it again), when they first wrote about their heartthrob on November 1, 1976:

He is tall, lean and blond, with dazzling white teeth, and he looks ever so much like Robert Redford. He rides around town in a chauffeured silver Cadillac with his initials, DJT, on the plates. He dates slinky fashion models, belongs to the most elegant clubs and, at only 30 years of age, estimates that he is worth “more than $200 million.”

Wow, he looks like Robert Redford! He has nice teeth! And a cool ride! And goes where all the cool kids go! Yay, Donald!

But when Trump called the Gray Lady and her little friends "fake" and then won the presidency without her drooling over him, she was very angry. How dare Mr. Nice Teeth kick her to the curb like that?

By 2017, she was always calling him crazy and immature, as in here, here, and here, for example.

How many exes have I heard diss their former sweeties by calling them crazy?

But their fan cheerleading wasn't just over Donald Trump: they also had their cutie crush on Harvey Weinstein.

But with Weinstein, it is a different matter: the paper nixed an exposé on his harassment of actresses way back in 2004...but aside from one article assuring readers that he wasn't going to be charged with one "groping incident" in 2015, you'd never know about that dark side.

In 2012, he was portrayed as a busy man about town, making a serious foray in Broadway with the help of his friends, like Bono:

Now he is relying on the advice of many, including reviewers and friends. Bono and the Edge of U2 saw the show early on; beyond friendship they were returning a favor, because Mr. Weinstein offered feedback on their Broadway musical “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark.” Bono suggested a joke about the local Leicester paper, which got laughs, while the Edge talked about tightening the storytelling. The composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, the Broadway theater owner and producer Jordan Roth, and the Tony-winning actor James Corden were among others weighing in.

Yes, he was a Great Man as another article gushed from 2013:

Seven minutes before Sunday’s premiere screening, Mr. W himself was out on Yonge Street, a foot from the red carpet, buffed and beaming. He didn’t look like a man who had been up all night, fending off competitors and buying up distribution rights to “Can a Song Save Your Life?,” a festival darling that was herded into the Weinstein fold on Sunday.

And in another 2012 piece, the saccharine sugar mode was in full blast:

The Punisher. The Boss. God. Harvey Weinstein earned a lot of nicknames during the Golden Globes, not least among them “Winner.” So when the Bagger saw him at the Weinstein Company afterparty...we naturally asked: what was his favorite nickname of the night?

...“My favorite nickname,” he said, “ is Dad.”

You mean, not "monster"?

Only when Ronan Farrow started openly nosing around why Weinstein was called a "monster", did the Gray Lady rush to beat him to the punch with their own exposé on him as she turned on him.

There are others, but let's get back to Google.

While the Gray Lady was always a little wary of the brash young Google, she still had her crush.

Wasn't there anything Google couldn't find? Google was always efficient and knew what they were doing.They were future-focussed visionaries. They were in demand with "quirky brilliance". They were almost godly in so many ways.

They were decided titans in 2003:

In the last few years, Google has risen as a force on the Internet by offering its smarter, faster searches as a free public service. Now the band of technoinsurgents who run the company are striking a blow against the business strategies of giant Web portals like America Online, Yahoo and Microsoft's MSN by rewriting the rules of Internet advertising.

Emerging as a powerful new marketing medium, Google has found a route to profitability that stands apart in a Silicon Valley that is still crippled by the dot-com crash.

Today? Not so much.

The love affair has turned into a hate fest.

That the Gray Lady is fickle is an understatement. She adores you one day, and then wants to break you into pieces the next.

That is not journalism. That is a mood swing.

It is one thing to be wrong about people in the beginning. There is a lesson to be learned about not relying on spin or publicists, and then doing what you need to do: find facts as they are, and then reveal them. Lay off the superlatives. Perhaps polished people seem great on first appearance, or maybe they take a wrong turn. That's more than possible, but sooner or later, when it happens one time too many, you have to start questioning how you are presenting information.

In the case of Weinstein, they were already given the memo. Even if they didn't share that memo to their readers, it should have been a reminder that cheerleading isn't reportage, and it should have stopped. It didn't for another thirteen years.

It is for that reason the profession lost credibility. The narratives were directives, telling people how to frame their perceptions of reality, instead of just presenting reality as it was.

The Gray Lady has issues. She goes from publicist to vindictive revenge-seeker, and it is time her temper tantrums were called out and she gave her flip-flopping opinions and narratives a permanent rest.

Bari Weiss, Othering, and Journalism's Cannibalization: why a profession makes a mockery of itself.

The New York Times' Bari Weiss wrote something very bigoted when she quoted a line from Hamilton on her Twitter feed:

“Immigrants: They get the job done.”

It was in reference to an American-born Olympian whose parents were born elsewhere.

As someone who is a first-generation Canadian, I can tell you that I am sick and tired of othering: an act of micro-aggression where people let you know in no uncertain terms you are not one of them.

I was born in Canada. I lived in Canada all my life in a city with a population of half a million people. I did not exclusively hang around other immigrants.

I have people asking where do I come from because they say they detect an accent.

No, you don't. No one asks me over the phone about my accent. In fact, people have asked about my accent even when I never opened my mouth.

They see my Eastern European features, and then ask something bigoted, and when I point out that I am Canadian, they ask about where my parents came from.

Even if I have an accent, listen to what I am saying, not how I am saying it.

Because it is an act of othering.

And Bari Weiss was othering, and it is a very bigoted thing to do. She was wrong to do it. For all the talk about how bigoted Donald Trump is, he twice married women who were born in other countries than the United States.

We have people on the Left, who in 2018, still make bigoted comments, even when they are pretending to be praising the little "foreigner" in question. Left-handed compliments from a Left-winged person is still bigoted. Stop making reference to a person's nationality, accent, and skin-colour. Do not put yourself on the top of the pecking order where your praise puts you on top.

Praise is fine. Just make certain you are not misusing praise to insult someone else as you lecture him on not doing the very thing that you are doing with your fake kudos.

So Weiss isn't as clever as she thinks, but the rest of the news media has been feasting on the New York Times.

The New York Post was gleeful with the fallout of this mess.

The Huffington Post reported on leaked transcripts of the affair with their own snarky spin on it.

Meanwhile, various fragmented and rambling pieces from banally titled The Outline to the equally banally titled The Forward either defend or wax poet in their disdain.

The problem is opinionists actually do not understand their jobs anymore. They let the title go to their head, and they never bother thinking about what they are supposed to do. Other opinionists jump down their throats when Twitter (which is not the entire world, by the way) gets in a tizzy, even if opinions expressed in that venue do not always reflect the consensus at large.

Journalists have always been othering. It is a byproduct of a patriarchal structure: if you are not The One, then you are The Other.

It is time to quit that game in a world where information is global. Stop othering, and stop trying to make your own dysfunctional outlet seem superior with your own take on it. Journalism is broken beyond repair, and it needs more than stomping on another ignorant columnist whose arrogance blinds her to the obvious.