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View Diary: The Return of the 19th Century (209 comments)

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  •  Good point! (22+ / 0-)

    Every man for himself leads everyone downhill fast.

    Nothing beats organization.

    So, what cause do we need to organize around?

    I have lost confidence in political campaigns - at best, they achieve minimal defensive results along the lines of minimizing damage from the wealthy elite.

    There needs to equally be an offensive line of action

    As Matt Taibbi put it in one of his articles

    If America is circling the drain, Goldman Sachs has found a way to be that drain — an extremely unfortunate loophole in the system of Western democratic capitalism, which never foresaw that in a society governed passively by free markets and free elections, organized greed always defeats disorganized democracy.
    •  Start with Corporate Monopoly on Narrative and (14+ / 0-)

      Value-Making through the mass-reach media.

      After 20 years of 'the internet will replace television' pipe dream what we actually have is that people still watch as much television as they did before the internet (maybe a half-hour a day less, depends on which figures you use.)

      So the web has just been added to the existing forms of media. And it's just a form where everyone goes to see what they want; and if nobody goes they don't know. It's a bunch of political and informational bantustans.

      But mass-reach: it gives every single person in America the identical impression and the same preoccupations within a day or two. And that's even if you don't own a radio or tv, because (and you just have to look) almost every topic discussed on the web starts with a Corporate story.

      And this goes way beyond just news/public affairs programming. It includes entertainment and advertising. Knowledge and Values.

      For example, the normalization of torture which happened with 24. The constant "i'm me, and in your face' value system of perpetual adolescence. The constant ads which show people who betray and scheme against their families and friends to get hold of the desired product.

      Open up the mass-reach media to content and narrative made by everyday people, and we've suddenly got a whole different America happening.

      And it would be very easy to do in a short time, as almost anybody who is politically/socially aware, whatever their politics, completely despises corporate media.


      Actual Democrats: the surest, quickest, route to More Democrats. And actually addressing our various emergencies.

      by Jim P on Mon Sep 30, 2013 at 06:15:21 PM PDT

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      •  Hmmm.... (0+ / 0-)

        Then you were safe against being beaten up by a cop in the days before television? No one was ever tortured before mass media made it popular?

        The mass media exist primarily to make money. To make money, they have to appeal to the tastes of their audiences -- tastes that their audiences already have. They are not the problem; they reflect the problem, which has been with us for a very long time, far longer than the mass media.

        "They smash your face in, and say you were always ugly." (Solzhenitsyn)

        by sagesource on Mon Sep 30, 2013 at 09:05:56 PM PDT

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        •  Yeah, I'm sure the billionaires who control (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          voicemail, jlb1972, gjohnsit, Jim P

          the five major trusts that dominate 80% of the media we consume probably don't ever give up a potential nickel in order to push narratives that will protect their power and influence.

          Meanwhile, no one has ever made a movie adaptation of The Jungle.

          In over 100 years.

          "But the traitors will pretend / that it's gettin' near the end / when it's beginning" P. Ochs

          by JesseCW on Tue Oct 01, 2013 at 01:53:53 AM PDT

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        •  Actually, to make money... (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jlb1972, gjohnsit, native, Jim P

          The media has to appeal to their customers.  Their customers are the ones who BUY the advertising.

          Politicians, pharmcuetical companies, oil companies and financial industries are the largest purchasers of advertising.  They determine the content.  

          We are merely the commodity in which the media outlets sell.

          "Perhaps the sentiments contained in the following pages, are not YET sufficiently fashionable to procure them general favour..."

          by Buckeye Nut Schell on Tue Oct 01, 2013 at 06:07:14 AM PDT

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          •  In a way, mass-reach television is selling us (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Buckeye Nut Schell, jlb1972, marina

            to ourselves. We "buy into" the various narratives presented to us via the powerfully hypnotic medium of TV. We identify with the characters and situations as they are acted out -- and of course this includes all the advertising which brackets, and pays for our entertainment. The commercials are inseparable from, and interwoven with the programming.

            What is being sold on contemporary TV is not primarily the products per se, but rather ways of acting, dressing, talking, thinking, and living. The advertised products (insurance, drugs, cars, whatever) are presented within the showtime context of staged scenarios that we are already (mentally and willingly) a part of.

            TV is like a mirror into which we gaze, that says "this is us" and we believe it. It is very persuasive. It is also distorted and highly manipulative. What TV is selling us is an imaginary, hypnotic vision of who and what we are -- also who and what we should be, or could be, if we were to buy certain things, or act in certain ways.

          •  AIG, RBS- Royal Bank of Scotland (?!) and anyone (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Buckeye Nut Schell

            as big as that advertising on regular daytime TV to people like me who are not looking to use their services always tells me there's some other reason that they need some warm fuzzy name recognition & PR. Their CEO is in trouble or something.
                 I remember when Frontier and Qwest were dueling it out in commercials. Did they think I was going to buy their stock? Maybe forget to notice Enron for a moment? Or was it more about the fiber-optic cable wars?
                Why is Morgan Stanley spending money on ads to make us like them these days? And Travelers can stick their big umbrella where the sun don't shine.

            We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

            by nuclear winter solstice on Wed Oct 02, 2013 at 05:09:58 AM PDT

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        •  This is the naive view to be sure (0+ / 0-)

          Airtight logic, leap to leap. The media only reflects?????
          Think on.

          I'm from the Elizabeth Warren wing of the Democratic Party

          by voicemail on Tue Oct 01, 2013 at 06:44:14 AM PDT

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        •  You are ignorant of the history of mass media. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          marina

          Willfully so. Not the first time you've made that kind of comment, and after you take the trouble to look at how things are actually done, how decisions are made, you'll stop making such comments.

          Start here, which details how psychologists have been used by media, big business, the intelligence apparatus, and politicians for 90 years now (downloadable BBC documentary, legal, and free, 4-part series). Here's the transcripts: http://www.centuryofself.com/

          Power and media have worked hand in hand since the days of Queen Elizabeth I.

          It's shameful a person would have an opinion and not take the time to actually know anything about the topic.

          And it's not just about public affairs. I myself worked as a typesetter who would do conference materials for gatherings of the largest advertising agencies in the world. The topic: How to reshape public values.


          Actual Democrats: the surest, quickest, route to More Democrats. And actually addressing our various emergencies.

          by Jim P on Tue Oct 01, 2013 at 12:38:32 PM PDT

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