Class Warfare Blog

November 22, 2017

How the Media Keep Failing Us

The Nation published an article under the miswritten title: How the State Can Make Inequality Worse by Steven Teles and Brink Lindsey. The subhead was “From zoning and licensing boards to bank bailouts, the state has often been captured by corporations and the wealthy.”

I have not read the article. (I used to subscribe but I had to trim back such expenditures.) But I am writing about the piece’s title and the mistaken impression it gives.

For one, why “can”? Why not “does.” There are myriad examples that show that the rules of our government, “the state,” have been manipulated to benefit the elites and disadvantage ordinary citizens. Can implies possibility, does implies certainty.

For another, the use of the term “the State” makes it sound as if some collective institution is responsible for the activities described. This is in the same vein as when conservatives use the word “government” as if it were some alien system imposed from outer space, instead of a stand-in for “us.”

Allow me to re-write their title to make it more clear as to what is going on. How about?

“How Corporations and the Wealthy use the State to Make Inequality Worse”
“From zoning and licensing boards to bank bailouts,
the state has often been captured by corporations and the wealthy.”

That seems to be much closer to the truth. And you can use the same subhead.

The media seem to be oh, so polite when addressing the elites. If this keeps up, soon it will be mandatory. Speaking against the elites will be made a crime. (It has been done before and is currently in use in religious hierarchies).

I hate to bash The Nation as it seems to be one of the few newspapers dedicated to publishing the truth, but if such obfuscatory journalism establishes a beach head there, we are probably all doomed to being citizens of an oligarchy.

 

 

 

1 Comment »

  1. We no longer have professional journalists/reporters in ‘Merikkka. What we have, and have had for many years now, are stenographers. Now, please do not misunderstand me, stenographers do useful work in offices, or at least they did. I am not sure if such a position still exists in any companies or large corporations today. They may have been replaced by some handy recorder, but at some point, somebody has to enter this information into a computer or type it all out for distribution.
    I think it was I. F. Stone, but may be incorrect in this quote. Any way, some smart human once said that the press should comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. That no longer happens in ‘Merikkka. We are all the worse off for this serious lack.

    Like

    Comment by Walter Kronkat — November 22, 2017 @ 3:58 pm | Reply


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