Thursday, June 26, 2008

Hopeful News

Of the four stories in today's RealNews, this is one of two hopeful pieces (the other one is about President Michelle Bachelet banning whaling from Chilean waters):

For (often selective) information, many - perhaps most - voters rely on television, whose programming is sustained (even Public Broadcasting) by interested corporate Under Writers.

I sustain RealNews - I, along with a whole bunch of other people who make little donations occasionally. Not that I completely suspend disbelief, but I don't feel as if fast hands are disclosing Miraculous Truth from somewhere, as I feel sometimes watching news on my actual TV set - the recognition that this is just another huckster's sales pitch.

But maybe we hear only what we already suspect.

On the other hand, perhaps you saw Jon Stewart interview LARA LOGAN:

She may (clearly) have a pitch too, but she seems to be a departure from rules set for embedded journalists in the past seventeen years of my lifetime.

I hardly ever turn on my TV set these days, except to watch the Red Sox or as a monitor for my DVD player.

Oh - the Sunday morning Gasbags are entertaining sometimes, like the Big Time Wrestling stuff we'd watch when we were in sixth grade.

And now this.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Fathers Day

As promised I will now write the eulogy for my father. (Sorry Pat) I will temper it some because of Ellwort, who is a great dad to his kids and I can see a big difference that makes for one's self esteem. Also to be a single mom in America was really bad when mom took on all seven of us kids when my dad turned his back on us. He never helped her, monetarily or in any way. A few short times when she was kicked out of her house he grudgingly took some of us in. My sister Pat remembers that time as years, I remember it as months. I lived with my dad alone for a few months in the summer of '69, as I had run away from the family who had taken me in and they'd had it with me.
He got me jobs- horrible jobs- I worked so hard that I would cry from tiredness and abuse from the "Mom and Pop" duo that owned a beachfront breakfast place in the hotel where we lived. He told me I'd better save some money for school clothes because he didn't have the money. OK. He then took my pay and then "got" me a second job so that I could afford my school clothes. That one in addition to the daily grind, which was washing dishes in the main restaurant of the same hotel 7pm to 11:30 pm. I quit the first day and just cried and tried to think of a way to get out of living with him.
The West Palm Beach pop festival was coming up and it was three days! I told my dad that I was going. He said what about your job(s)? At my age14, I had run away twice. Once with a schyzophrenic twenty year old, hitch hiking across the entire US, stayed in San Francisco in the summer of love, (1968) and hitched back across the southern part of the US. Another time my girlfriend and I ran away to the Florida Keys to join a commune. So there I was- my dad trying to tell me what to do. He was a scary, violent, person, so I listened, halfheartedly. He said I could go to the festival if I did my job in the day and came back at midnight? Wha?? I had a nerdy boyfriend at the time who, when I told him- said OK, we can do that! Wha?? Go to a three day concert and come home every night? Unheard of! Well we did that the first two days but stayed all night on the last night because the Rolling Stones did not come on until 4:30 am. So we raced back after that only for me to be locked out. We slept on the beach. Anyway, happy father's day Dad- hope you come back as a better person in your next life! More to come... There were a couple of good bones in his body, for example he worked in the civil rights movement, but right now I need to vent for Mom's sake.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

National Council For Media Reform 06/07/08

Archie’s Journal NCMR June 7, 2008

This morning began at 6:30 AM in the Minneapolis Hyatt with a scramble to get up, get fed, get presentable, and walk the two blocks to get over to the NCMR conference auditorium to see Bill Moyers's Morning Plenary Address.

Then we had a short break to complete our waking-up and processing of the address and to shop for a few protein and water supplies.

At 11:30, we sat in a large assembly room watching Norman Solomon open a meeting with Phil Donahue (who has just produced the amazing film Body of War), Amy Goodman, Naomi Klein, Sonali Kolhatkar (Bleeding Afghanistan), and Hip Hop Caucus Rev. Lennox Yearwood on Media and the War: An Unembedded View. It was excellent and it was packed; in fact at least 3,500 people showed up for the conference this year, reflecting the annually growing number of activist bodies showing up to reclaim and put the “free” back in free press. At one point, Rev Yearwood dismissively apostrophized the Fox News contingent who was there among a number of other corporate press reportbots and who had made a nuisance of itself after the Moyers thing earlier.

Short break – don’t remember what we did, other than we were out on the street some.

At 1:00 we went to the big ballroom to have Lunch With the Thousands. Folding chairs around formica-top tables; one line for tacos and one line for subs; plastic knives & forks (but not paper plates).

After lunch we went to find a store to furnish our hotel room with wine and spirits.

A little later – 2:30 – we sat in a partitioned-out assembly room attending to the observations of the two excellentest FCC commissioners, Michael J. Copps and Jonathan S. Adelstein. US House Representative Mike Doyle (D-Pa) was on the panel to add his thoughts on his propitious efforts to promote (by means of local low-power FM radio) the voices of the people – you know: the local folks who live nearby, your homeys.

Dinner: Staccato – little pizza and some Italian pasta dish (& steak if you wanna) place with booths, a couple of tables; music-themed d├ęcor since it’s near the symphony-oriented emporium.

8:00 – 11:00: Keynote. Awesome and inspiring, and with any luck rabble-rousing. Since it’s 1:52 AM Minnesota time right now, I can’t even begin to take on a summary of the whole biz. A salient recollection is Naomi Klein observing that (during a power imbalance similar to today’) popular pressure compelled Franklin Roosevelt to confront powerful corporate lobbyists with the ultimatum that either they accept the New Deal or the nation would face a revolution. Yes.
(only available keynote footage so far. more maybe on YouTube soon or on Democracy Now! Monday)

Fading fast.

What do you think?

NCMR June 7, 2008