23 January, 2006

Rhinocrisy Guide to Being Evil, part II

I woke up to NPR's Morning Edition. Evil, demonstrated.

It would be evil to contemplate aggressive war, which violates the most basic international law. It would be really evil to discuss it as if it were no big deal. No big deal at all. Not only that, but to ignore other options other than about 10 words at the beginning of the story referring to vague "diplomatic options." And at the same time to ignore the fact that diplomacy can not work while nuclear states get respect and non-nuclear states get invaded.

It would be evil to discuss how to reduce the horrors faced by coal mine workers while offering cures that still essentially place all responsibility for safety on individual workers, rather than on mine managers. Rather than enforcing mine safety laws that already exist -- the Sago mine had over 200 violations in the year before 12 workers died there -- so the cure is to provide more oxygen tanks and electronic tags to keep track of exactly where miners are. Electronic tags, of course, will also help bosses fire people they think are lollygagging. And oxygen tanks? Yeah, that will do a hell of a lot of good against fires and collapses. Relegate structural solutions to silence. What's good for the mine owners is good for America.

And most of all, it would be evil to wake up millions of Americans with a 7 a.m. newscast that spouts so much sinister nonsense. Time to go walk in front of a bus.


I'm not sure which you're pinning as the source of evil here. If NPR's trademark tone is your no-big-deal-at-all, I'm a little confused. I found it perfectly alarm-bell-ringing and drowsy-dream killing. I'm not too keen on the wake-up-to-the-news school of alarm clocks, not being easily charmed awake by the genteel dross that's usually playing by the time I used to get up. But I don't think there was anything in this report that didn't say to someone remotely serious about the topic, "wake up--we've got problems." I suppose there's a crime in being brief about this, when brevity is so dangerous, but it is a morning news magazine. What annoyed me about the news report was this: there was no discussion of the actual information  in the McCain lede quote (as opposed to seeing it as newsworthy in itself as a presentation of his opinion), informatin that nonetheless seeped into a lot of people's bleery brains. But it's not remotely clear to me that "they already have the missiles to put 'em on." 

Posted by Saheli

First of all, I don't know why someone would trust my opinion on good and evil, considering my own ambiguous status on that continuum. But what horrified me was NPR's treating agressive war as just another news story. The tone was identical to the one they use when reporting on toad races. If I had been reporting that story, my tone would have been something closer to this:


Posted by hedgey

oh cool! you can nuke san francisco ! that's more in hedgehog's tone of panic. 

Posted by david

I think that NPR does a lot of good by airing King George's daily, "The American people hired me, and as CEO, I can do whatever the hell I want," statement. The one that had me huffing this morning was his unrepent stance on warrantless domestic wiretaps, "The program's legal, it's designed to protect civil liberties, and it's necessary." One needs a dose of this to shake the brain to more inportant matters as one decides which cream-colored cardigan to wear. 

Posted by echan

anybody who thought exposure would cause the program to stop or apologies to flow hasn't been awake the last 5 years.

but this comment is really related to something sec'y rice said relating to the palestinian vote result. she said, "you cannot have one foot in politics and another in terror."

however, as the president is allowed to do absolutely anything he likes and "cannot" is non-op in the faith-based universe, here are the conditions under which you can plant feet that way:

1. you're us.

2. you're a friend of us.

3. you're an enemy of an enemy of us.

4. you paid us good money for the weapons you're using.

5. you're not anti-corporate.

most situations fall within those 5. thank you for doing semantic business with the united states of america. 

Posted by david

The problem with NPR going


is that I would stop listening. As it is, they get to be calm and I get to go


and lose all appetite and risk losing what's left of my midnight snack. 

Posted by Saheli

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