The June 25-July 1 issue of Business Week carries a completely pointless cover story on the xxx business of pornography. But inside in a different article are some very insightful comments from Congressman Gary Ackerman, a Democrat from New York who is stepping down, and also from Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine.) Ironically, now they can speak the truth that they dared not speak while in office. They are quoted this way:
ACKERMAN: "Society has changed. The public is to blame as well. I think the people have gotten dumber...I mean everything has changed. The media has changed. We now give broadcast licenses to philosophies instead of people. People get confused and think there is no difference between news and entertainment. People who project themselves as journalists on television don't know the first thing about journalism. They are just there stirring up a hockey game.
SNOWE: "Because what we are trying to build what I describe as a sensible center, you don't have a base in terms of raising money. You are almost always confined to the MSNBC or Fox News prism. That's the way I describe it because it's true. People see you in one channel or another and nothing in between."
ACKERMAN: "We are probably the only ones who watch both Fox and MSNBC. The public watches either one or the other, and they watch one or the other hoping that the guys on my side will kill the guys on the other side. You can accuse any and every one of us, at least at times, of going for the ratings and doing and saying things that are popular or to try to raise more money so that we can get re-elected. The media does that in spades."
My key takeaways:
--The media has allowed itself to become ideological-ized. That's wrong.
--The media is putting people before the American people who don't have knowledge or skills. They just look good.
--The media is not trying to create a sensible center. That doesn't sell. So it bears responsibility for the polarization of our body politic.