Intel's Ronler Acres Plant

Silicon Forest

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Mass Media

Marcel put up a post decrying the Hobby Lobby ruling this morning, and it prompted me to start a comment:
I do not understand the fuss over the Hobby Lobby ruling. Of course, there are a lot of things that are immensely popular (like Facebook and professional sports) that don't interest me. I suspect that the chattering classes need something insubstantial to chatter about, and this is this week's topic.
But starting down this track got me to thinking, and maybe there is something more substantial going on here.

Warren Meyer put up a post the other day (via Dustbury) that pretty succcinctly covered the foolishness of this uproar: Hobby Lobby wasn't trying  to prohibit the use or purchase of contraceptives, they simply did not want to pay for them. To my mind the cost of contraceptives is miniscule, but as my kids so often remind me, my perception of cost and value are miles away from theirs.

A couple of weeks ago there was another Supreme Court ruling (Abramski v. United States). On that one I agreed with the losing side. In my little universe, most people agreed with me. But when I did an internet search on the topic I was surprised to find that most all of the coverage agreed with the illogical position taken by the majority.

Here we've got another story that focuses our attention on another obscure issue, and once again, most all of the coverage on the internet is on one side of the issue.

After the Abramski  issue, I was tempted to write to some of the prominent reporters and columnists and ask them if they took that tone in their story because it was:
  1. what they truly believed, or
  2. what their publisher told them to write, or
  3. they knew what kind of story their publisher would pay for.
Just now I realized there was another possibility: they each wrote one story applauding the decision and one deriding it, and let the publisher choose which one to 'print'.

So, yes, I do believe the media is being manipulated by someone(s) with an agenda. I think it's the same agenda I grew up with, and that is that:
  • every life is important, so we should try to ensure the health and well being of everyone, and
  • we don't need any more people, we already have plenty, so we should try and restrict the number of babies being produced.
It's kind of a nice pleasant dream, but it's not working out so well. Not everyone agrees with these points, some people agree with one, but not the other, so we have long, bitter arguments about this. Africa is my favorite bad example (because it is far away and I have no first hand knowledge of the place, besides, it's full of people who aren't Americans). George Bush the 2nd set up some kind of vaccination plan that saved five million lives. At the same time, there was a war going on in central Africa (a series of wars actually) that killed five million people, mostly through disease and starvation.

Sometimes I think the Amish and Christian Scientists have the right of it. Maybe our high-tech society is destroying our physical and mental fiber. Whenever that happens, I go have a cup of coffee and a donut and sit down at my computer and write a diatribe about whatever's bothering me, and then I feel better.

Previous post on the Abramski case.

No comments: