Larry Sakin RANTSThe Good NewsWed Apr 5, 2006 03:44
The Good News
4 April 2006
President Bush, right wing media types and the neo-conservative leadership have been complaining a lot that the mainstream media just doesn’t show enough good news about Iraq. Actually, they contend the mainstream media is ignoring the good news created by neoconservative policy all over the world. So being the fair-minded, liberal terrorist that I am, I’ve decided to shed some light on the good news the neoconservative set are so desperate to have exposed.
The Good News is that the mainstream media has not stayed on any of the Bush Administration scandalous affairs enough at any one time for the American people to understand just how damaging neoconservative policy is. A good example of this is the building of permanent military bases in Iraq. These bases are being built under contract by KBR, a Halliburton subsidiary, to the tune of $200 million in taxpayer dollars. One of these bases is being built up in the northern regions near the oil fields in Kirkuk, another is being built just outside of Baghdad, and the other is being built behind the Green Zone as a residence for various coalition and American diplomats. Of course Bush and his minions deny these bases are permanent, saying they are needed to house military personnel on a strictly temporary basis. However, that is a strikingly different tune than the one Bush sings in general, that an American military presence will be necessary until the insurgency is completely eliminated and that troops likely won’t be pulled out of Iraq before he’s out of office. But you won’t find any stories in the mainstream press about permanent military installations. A quick check of the Lexis-Nexis database shows the only references to these bases is in association with the denials of their existence. Maybe I’m wrong, but it seems to me that the general media ignoring this story in light of American discontent over the war should be considered good news by Bush and the neocons.
Let’s not just focus upon Iraq though. What happened to the spurt of media coverage on the so-called Black-Ops torture centers in Eastern Europe and the accusations about torture taking place at Guantanamo Bay, Afghanistan and Iraq? Gosh, one would think the press putting these stories of horrendous abuses to sleep would be awfully good news to Bush and his friends. Of course, the press barely even mentions our other war in Afghanistan, where the Taliban are rapidly gaining a foothold of the outer regions. And the story about the federal legislature’s move to legalize Bush’s wiretapping of American citizens has hardly received any play in the press. Considering that the authorization to use torture and the wiretap scheme are both impeachable offenses, I would think President Bush would be very grateful that the media has given such little mind to these very serious matters. And what mainstream media outlet has covered the situation in New Orleans recently, where Mayor Ray Nagin, Governor Kathleen Blanco and some White House staff have been putting together extra-legal commissions of white Republicans who are misallocating reconstruction funds, calling for elections but denying Katrina victims forced to move out of state ballots? That the general press has passed on this story in favor of the 2006 elections horserace must be very comforting to the Bush Administration.
Good news abounds, Mr. Bush. I’m sure it’s a bummer that the general media is constantly batting away at the numbers of US casualties in Iraq, the bombing of mosques and the ineptness of the supposed “elected” Iraqi government. I’m sure you feel a slow burn each time Iran responds to your hubris and saber rattling with their special brand of the same. And it must make you silently weep when a majority of the American people disagrees with your policies. However, think how much worse things would be if the American electorate really knew the extent of your harm. Think how many more people would call for your removal if the press actually reported the true casualty figures from Iraq, your plan for a permanent military presence there, your willingness to deny voting rights to Katrina victims and your continued approval of constitutional and human rights violations, none of which the mainstream media has reported on in depth. Maybe you’ve caused so much bad news in your tenure as president; you can’t appreciate how much good news you’re given through the quiet obeisance of the press.
Larry Sakin is a former music executive and medical non-profit administrator. He has published a number of articles in both fields and is currently writing a book about coping with loss. More of his work can be found on http://www.blogcritics.org, http://www.changeforamerica.com, and Charlotte’s Other Web.
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