Representative Lamar Smith, Republican representative from Texas, has decided he needs to launch a [Media Fairness Initiative]. 

 

Like many Americans, I have become increasingly concerned about unfair reporting by the mainstream news media. The purpose of the Media Fairness Initiative is not to censor or condemn, but to encourage the media to adhere to the highest standards of reporting and provide the American people with the facts, balanced stories and fair coverage of the news.”

 

At this point, I have to note, this is the same Lamar Smith who sat on the committee for impeachment inquiry, and who, after hearing the legal and substantive charges against Bush and his administration, claimed he could see no impeachable offenses had occurred.  Upon making this statement, I wondered if Mr. Smith had just recently awakened from a prolonged coma, or if, he was just totally unable to grasp the evidence laid before him.  Personally, I think it must have been a coma.

 

Now it seems, since the radical right was firmly rejected by a majority of Americans, Mr. Smith believes the media should be controlled and made to report fairly, without bias, use balanced reporting, blah, blah, blah….

 

I can only assume this sudden interest, or recognition of media bias is simply a case of “when we do it, it is noble and just; if you do it, it’s a crime”. 

 

Mr. Smith, and others like him, saw no problem in the last eight years with the unfair, unbalanced, and many times misleading and outright misrepresentation of the [news], and had this to say:

 

“The Media Fairness Initiative (MFI) will strongly support a free press and not condone any form of censorship. Instead, we will examine the causes of one-sided reporting, develop strategies to combat media bias, promote an open dialogue between members of the media and elected officials, and remind the media of their profound obligation to provide the American people with the facts. We will avoid personal attacks or gratuitous criticism of media representatives.”

 

One sided reporting like on Faux News??  Personal attacks like those launched using the media by the right wing spin machine?  Ruppert Murdoch and his faux news channel have made a fortune off the Republicans expressly by doing the very things you now find objectionable, and none of you were remotely concerned with any kind of profound obligation to provide the American people with the facts about anything.  What you were concerned with was using the media from all sources to promote your divide and destroy policies and ideologies and as long as you controlled every word we heard, every piece of information whether true or not, and as long as you kept the upper hand, you found no problem with the media. 

 

Representative Smith evidently entered his coma about the same time that Karl Rove, a man who should be in jail for numerous reasons and who is now appearing on Faux news as some kind of commentator, began the high-jacking of not only our government, but also the media.  We endured eight years of pseudo news promoted, financed and provided by the Bush Administration via Rove, and were intentionally lied to, deceived and spoon fed deliberately misleading and false information.  But, it is only now as the public has firmly rejected the neo-con, holier-than-thou, ‘we’re only lying to you for your own good”, he seems to find problems with the media.

 

Here is what I believe Mr. Smith truly finds problematic:

 

The neo-cons were unable to sell their devastating ideology to a weary public that has tired of the vitriol, the nastiness and the censoring of the news to benefit this elitist segment of the country only to find out that little or none of what was reported to them bore any resemblance to the truth of the matter. 

 

When you take a look at who personifies the radical right, who their icons are, who promotes their anti-American views and policies you find some of the most repugnant and disgusting people at the forefront.  Coulter, O’Reilly, Limbaugh, Hannity and other TV and radio personalities who make their living, not by telling any kind of truth or reporting any kind of news, but rather, by delivering a twisted up version of what might have happened but most likely didn’t; or by carefully omitting the [facts] and delivering a carefully crafted series of messages meant to deceive the public. 

 

Representative Smith seems totally oblivious to the past eight years not only regarding the illegal activities of the Bush Administration, but also the manipulation of the news by the far right wing.  Give him some time….maybe as he progresses through his recovery from his recent and long term coma, he’ll come to his senses.  We can only hope.

 

© 2008 Marti Oakley