Brian Williams got caught in a fib, or two.
I really don’t care, and neither should you.
Verse aside, we seem to be faced with two systems here, and the one we should be focused on, but are so easily distracted from, is the truly troubling one. Brian Williams embellished his stories? Do I care? Not really – at least not in terms of credibility.
Here’s the thing: we live in a world that offers nearly effortless real-time access to global information, so it’s pretty easy to get a sense of the enormity of what could – and should – be covered by journalists. In reality, however, we live in an America where most of the primary media outlets, and their digital tentacles, are owned by a handful individual corporations. And each of these outlets has its own specific editorial agenda that shapes the information being disseminated by their ‘journalists’ so that this powerful medium advances the parent entity’s political and/or corporate agenda.
Think Fox News likes Republicanism, and hates the current administration. MSNBC leans forward toward liberalism, a far left Democratist agenda, LGBT issues and the like. CNBC (despite Rick Santelli’s refreshing clarity and voice) generally seems to spin everything economic toward Rose Colored Glassland, because they get that most of the economy, despite the figures, is driven by psychology. Etc Etc.
With that in mind, the actual consequences of an individual, albeit popular, journalistic personality changing his recollection and potentially undermining some sense of credibility is TINY – even laughable – when compared with the massively consequential long-term effects of limited choice, (often) artificial creation and private control of the information (nee, news) being directed THROUGH him. Let’s face it, Brian Williams is a mere conduit, a likable, square-jawed fellow through which information passes to an increasingly dulled and desperate audience by a remote corporate entity that uses so-called news as fodder to subtly mold public opinion and advance a private, for-profit agenda.
Long story short, the fourth estate is now run almost exclusively by the folks who live in estates.
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In an age when:
- Corporations write legislature and feed it through their store-bought senators and congressmen so it can be pork-barreled – conveniently below the news radar – into larger bills that serve smaller groups…
- Education is being privatized so that entire generations can be molded, quantified, data-mined and turned into drone like consumers…
- Conditioned apathy and a fear of speaking up truthfully keeps most folks in quietly desperate agreement about the state of the world…Does Brian Williams even matter?
And what did he do, exactly, to provoke such a manufactured sense of being offended for a news cycle or two? Do I care? Am I surprised? How many times when reporting so-called ‘storms’ have you seen the intense closeup and driving-rain camera-angle pull away to reveal some shiny reporter standing in a parking lot or on a street in an inch of water while pedestrians go about their business in the background? Credibility? Really?
What I’m saying is this – there is no credibility anywhere. Not anymore. So why crucify one guy, pay a lot of so-called, strangely attractive, ‘media experts’ to come weigh in and fill a news cycle that could instead be dedicated to Boko Haram, Syria, Croatia, a shaky China, or even our own unsustainable debt, poverty, social discord and infrastructure issues right here at home?
And yet, here’s the thing: because we’ve fast grown accustomed (some might say groomed) to our persistent, plugged-in smartphone soundbite-driven, short attention span universe, we now are easily, deeply distracted by every thinly-veneered-yet-oh-so-shiny supposed ‘scandal’, we scream about the stuff that doesn’t matter when we should be paying attention to the man behind the curtain.
So I say screw it. Put him back on the air.
Just iron his blazer and recomb his hair.
Unless Journalists are allowed to reemerge from their holes and tell their well-researched, reasoned and unbiased truth once again, the entire thing is a farce, and Brian Williams should be the least of our worries.