Since I take in a LOT of news across the spectrum, the current situation brought to mind a bit of poetry by Dr. Seuss.
“Oh, the jobs people work at! Out west near Hawtch-Hawtch there’s a Hawtch-Hawtcher bee watcher, his job is to watch. Is to keep both his eyes on the lazy town bee, a bee that is watched will work harder you see. So he watched and he watched, but in spite of his watch that bee didn’t work any harder not mawtch. So then somebody said “Our old bee-watching man just isn’t bee watching as hard as he can, he ought to be watched by another Hawtch-Hawtcher! The thing that we need is a bee-watcher-watcher!”. Well, the bee-watcher-watcher watched the bee-watcher. He didn’t watch well so another Hawtch-Hawtcher had to come in as a watch-watcher-watcher! And now all the Hawtchers who live in Hawtch-Hawtch are watching on watch watcher watchering watch, watch watching the watcher who’s watching that bee. You’re not a Hawtch-Watcher you’re lucky you see!”
In America, we think of the Fourth Estate – the news media – as our watcher over our busy bees in
government and politics. If we watch them diligently and honestly, it is believed that our public servants will do a better job. Probably true.
But what if the watchers are not watching diligently and honestly? What if the watchers make excuses for the bees – or side with them? What if the watchers are becoming the very people we think they are watching on our behalf?
In watching over our republic, we hope – and often believe – that the watchers in the press are giving us the facts in their daily reports. Not only do they “report” but they have increasingly interpreted the facts. And now they claim to check the facts. The fact-checking function is nothing less than telling us what to think and believe.
Since there are no fact-checkers – watchers – watching the watchers, they gain a monopoly on information. Like propagandists for despots, they use their unique powers to mold public opinion. They can actually make us believe things that are not true by spinning the facts in their biased narrative centrifuge.
The news media has become so corrupted by their own partisan self-interest that we need to fact-check the fact-checkers. We need to watch the watchers.
If you take the time to watch the watchers – and do your own fact checking – you will learn that a very high percentage of the so-called news is inaccurate at best – propaganda, at worst.
We could be kind and speak of errors and inaccuracies in the daily reporting, but the misinformation is so one-sided that one can only conclude that it is strategic and intentional. In many cases, they spread false information and even lie. Mendacious partisan narratives are crafted around selective or out-of-context reporting, tactical partisan spin and outright lies.
Unlike the people of Hawtch-Hawtch. We do not have institutional watchers to watch all those watchers – unless it is we the people. We do not have any vast profession of people who will watch all the news and reveal every error and count every lie in their so-called newscasts.
Who is keeping a count of every inaccurate statement that comes from the lips of Mika Brzezinski, Larry O’Donnell, Rachel Maddow, Anderson Cooper, John Lemmon and Jim Acosta? And yes, I singled out MSNBC and CNN folks because they are the most egregious in spreading false information and mendacious partisan political narratives – propaganda-as-news. I know that because I – for one – have been watching all those major watchers for a very long time.
So, there ‘tis.