Last week, we talked about "The corruption of the 'news' media into the 'propaganda' media". In that context, I was interested to come across an article by my friend in meatspace and cyberspace, author Cedar Sanderson. I think she makes a very good point.
The death of critical thinking and logic in our culture has become more and more evident in the last few years, reaching a feverish peak during the recent crisis ... if we do not start exercising our abilities to think clearly, skeptically, and seek truth, we can and are giving up much of what our ancestors fought and worked so hard to gain.
We have got to figure out how to think for ourselves again. And it seems the first step toward doing that is to reach over to the remote and turn off the news. Also, switch off Youtube if you’re trying to use that for ‘news’ and definitely flee the flaming dumpster that is Twitter.
That’s a good question. A very good question, and one I don’t fully have an answer for ... When I hear some tidbit of information, I spend a few minutes to track it back and verify it. Yes, this is a lot harder than simply letting the talking heads fill my mind with what they want to allow me to hear and think. On the other hand, with the world wide web of information at my fingertips, and a little knowledge of how to read critically, I can be a lot closer to the facts and finding the truth than I ever can if I rely on the mass media to think for me.
There's more at the link.
Cedar quotes from an article by William Lehman, in which he considers the damage done to human society by the increasingly-cut-off-from-reality press.
There once was a time when the “traditional” press was in service to the community. Seems for the most part, that ship sailed. Newspapers, the oldest mass media existent, are going the way of the dodo… well, they helped themselves become extinct, and I shall not much mourn their passing. When the news existed to serve the community, and SURE, to expose corruption, and malfeasance, they served their purpose. After Watergate though, it seems like the press got drunk on their own power.
. . .
Where once there were thoughtful articles weighing both sides of an issue, the “USA TODAY” and others of their ilk developed the Splash box, the Text box in a box, and all of the other things designed in a most P. T. Barnum way to excite, to stir the emotion, to catch your attention for mere seconds and then on to the next thing, in the style of “THIS WAY TO THE EGRESS!” “SEE THE EGRESS!” “THE EIGHTH WONDER OF THE WORLD, THE EGRESS!” until you find yourself dumped out at the end having passed through to “the egress” which of course, means EXIT, knowing no more than you did when you started, and wondering, “just what happened here?”
In short, they forgot their roots.
. . .
I desperately want you to question. Take nothing, including what I say, at face value. Always assume there’s a motive, an agenda. My personal agenda I will be quite clear about, I want freedom, freedom for my nation, freedom for my people, and for my family. I want people to THINK. If I am trying to win your thoughts, it’s to cause you to question, to examine, and to reason. And I want you to question, including questioning me.
Again, more at the link.
I think both articles have the right of it. Recommended reading.