Reason Number 1 To Hate Mainstream News: They Are Oblivous To Their Non Objective "Objective" Reporting

The News Is Hardly Objective

There are many problems with mainstream media, some of which are being addressed naturally through the rise of blogging. Truth be told, there will always be problems in some capacity in the way we receive news. But today's standards are pathetic.

For one, the conventional news media today is dominated by large scale journalistic organizations that are afraid to challenge the government in a legitimate way. The media should be the public's eyes and ears. That is their service. Yet why do they act as the government's sounding board for ideas?

The Central Intelligence Agency is a massive part of the government, demanding billions of dollars in funding and without accounting for its spending. We have heard repeatedly that reporters literally **send** their stories to the CIA if they contain information about the CIA to make sure the organization is okay with what is going to be printed 1). The CIA is part of the government! How is that keeping a check on power?

Journalists didn't do their due diligence after 911 nor the Iraq War. People look back now and say that the intelligence was faulty that led us to war. The problem with this argument, from the journalistic perspective, is that the journalists are supposed to be challenging the information that the govenrment provides as reasoning for war. They didn't check it out in the first place, but now they want us all to know the intelligence was faulty. Great…The news is also openly purchased by the President's administration 2). So they won't hold the government accountable…partly becuase some of the journalists are a wolf in sheep's clothing!

But the journalists aren't just in bed with the government. They are in bed with the businesses that make the products of war. Sometimes they **are that business**.

Take a look at NBC, one of the top news companies on television. They were majority owned by General Electric ( a recent merger with Comcast ended its tenor), who happens to produce numerous war materials. Don't they have a conflict of interest when they are reporting on the prospect of war 3)? Perhaps they are 'reporting' to us not to give us all the facts, but to skew the perspective just enough so that a majority of Americans support their bottom line, which happens to include war.

Indeed, when looking at the major news media conglomerates, we can see that their board members share interesting ties to other large multinational corporations 4) 5). If someone important on the board of a major news corporation also shares a board seat with Coca Cola, Boeing, JP MorganChase, Bechtel Group, et al, do you think they will make decisions within the media company that will harm their other organizations? Our guess is not.

All around, the new media machine is in trouble. They are losing their backbone when it comes to reporting on the tough stuff, like challenging government and corporate corruption. More and more do we see article written about the celebrity excitement for the week. But the follwing article is going to demostrate the hubris that exists within **the establishment**, so much so that you will see blatant bragging about public theft as though it is deserved. Prepare for the worst.

An Experience In Absurdist Journalism

The following article appeared in the Daily Gazette of Schenectady, NY, and follows up on the high profile marijuana trafficking arrest of Eric Canori (the head of the operation) and famous mountain bike rider Melissa Giove back in 2009 6). The problems with this artile are many.

There is an earnest attempt by journalists of the conventional persuasion to be as “objective” as possible. In their quest for objectivity they blithely cover atrocities of personal theft.

For instance, this article was written in September of 2014. The States of Colorado and Washington have legalized the sale and use of Cannabis. California has had numerous attempts to legalize it, but the apparent ease of obtaining medical cannabis for things like headaches or cramps means that they don't need it completely legal yet. The states of Alaska, Oregon, and Maine are primed to legalize the plant very soon 7). Nearly half of the states in the union have made medical cannabis available to their citizens 8) and that number is only expected to increase towards 100% in the near future. In addition, most states treat cannabis position as though it were a speeding ticket. The state of New York in which this article is written is a good example. Possession of cannabis in the state of New York for reasonable amount of bud, just under 1 oz, lands you a ticket worth $100. An ounce of weed would probably take the casual smoker 2-4 months to smoke and a habital smoker 2-3 weeks. The spectrum of punishment increases up to misdemeanors, much larger fines, and incarceration risks in less friendly states like Indiana 9) or Georgia 10). Thus, the picture of cannabis across the country ranges from it's a fully legal and medicinal product, to its only a medicinal product, to its not medicinal and its jail worthy. That's quite the spectrum.

None of this information is obscure or not talked about, and yet this author is writing of this high profile bust **and how the police forces of the area are going to divvy up Eric Canori's money**.

Throughout the article, the author assumes rather obviously that cannabis is a bad thing. He writes almost with excitement at how Eric Canori had to buy gold bars and bury them into the ground to hide his profits from selling cannabis. Now the police have caught him committing a victimless crime (selling cannabis) and they will take $12 million from him.

Here is how the breakdown of the police stealing Eric Canori's money:

  • Albany County District Attorney's Office – $103,000
  • Albany Police Department – $473,000
  • New York State Police – $471,000
  • Saratoga County District Attorney's Office – $122,000
  • Sartoga Springs Police Department – $467,000
  • Saratoga COuntry Sheriffs Office – $452,000
  • Schenectady County District Attorney's Office – $46,000
  • Schenectady County Sheriff's Office – $414,000
  • Schenectady Police Department – $471,000
  • Warren County Sheriff's Office – $499,000
  • Warren County District Attorney's Office – $46,000
  • Washington County District Attorney's Office – $46,000
  • Washing Country Sheriff's Office – $471,000

The Questions Of Journalism

Journalists need to satisfactorily answer the questions of who, what, when, where, why (and how) to write a solid article. A journalist should come across the case of Eric Canori and Melissa Giove and fully answer the question of, “what did they do?”

If they did that, they would say how they moved cannabis across state boarders with the intention to sell it. They should then ask themselves, is this in of itself a crime? Who was the victim? There is no victim. So they committed a victimless crime. Shouldn't our society ask bigger questions about victimless crimes? Why exactly do we treat those people as thugs and not worthy as a person?

Here are some of the caricatures of Canori from the article:

“Convicted marijuana trafficker Eric Canori led federal authorities to buried treasure; literally. **instead of making frivilous purchases** with proceeds earned from a multimillion dollar marijuana trafficking pipelin he ran…the frugal Canori invested heavily in precious metals that he then buried on property he owned…”

  • Right away, the article takes on the assumption that because Canori sold marijuana, all profits from that sale are automatically granted to the state. Canori made millions, and since how he made those millions was by a victimless illegality, all of his money is “treasure” for the government to gobble up.
  • Notice how the writer shows surprise that someone running a multi million dollar business would save their profit instead of spending it “frivolously”. The assumption here is that someone “dealing drugs” is stupid.

A quote from the DEA agent who was tapped for information in this case said…

“Canori reaped millions from the illicit sale of marijuana…contributing to drug abuse and drug addiction. Due to law enforcement's cooperation, those millions will now be used to stop drug trafficking, curb drug abuse and support law enforcement's ongoing efforts to keep our cities safe and secure.”

Interesting logic. Let's see how this looks with other products.

  • example 1: Philip Morris, JR Reynolds, and others have reaped billions from the sale of tobacco products, which has contributed greatly to American's abusing tobacco and being addicted to tobacco. Cancer has one of the highest causes of death for Americans, right next to heart disease, and lung, throat and mouth cancer from tobacco products are the scientifically proven leading force of these cancers.
  • example 2: Budweiser, Coors, and others have reaped billions in profits from the sale of alcohol products, which has contributed greatly to American's abusing alcohol and being addicted to it. Becoming addicted to alcohol is rather simple and causes liver failure, hepatitis C, cirrhosis, heart disease, and it causes the abuser to be violent, leading to murders, suicides, domestic abuse, child abuse, and societal problems.
  • example 3: Krispy Kreme, Ben and Jerry's, and others have profited immensely from the sale of doughnuts and other desserts. The over consumption of desserts can bring about obesity, diabetes, and heart disease, all of which kills Americans in great numbers. They can also become addicted to this food, as the sugar behaves like a drug of sorts within their system.

Notice what happens when we insert other examples of products that a) cause addiction b) abuse and c) deleterious health effects to Americans. Chances are you recognize and have an emotion related to one of those names, or at least to the kind of product they sell. Many of you will enjoy the products they sell. By inserting them into this Drug Enforcement Agency equation, you probably would wrinkle your nose at the DEAs perspective.

Should we really blame Budweiser for someone's alcohol addiction? No, we shouldn't, because that takes away the responsibility of the user, and the abdication of personal responsibility is a terrible idea.

Should we blame Krispy Kreme or Phillip Morris for the societal problems that have arisen from the consumption of their products? No and for the same reasons.

It is worth noting that cannabis is demonstrably less addictive and less harmful (it's a medicine with no overdose!) than any of the above mentioned products. With exception of food, all of the above are drugs with no necessary need in the human system. Nevertheless, marijuana has been historically categorized as a bad drug and therefore a DEA agent can state something like that above and it somehow make sense to some people.

One of the reasons this is so typical of mainstream journalism (and why I hate it) is because cannabis is in a multi decade turnaround toward social acceptance, and yet there isn't one whiff of that in this article. The mainstream journalists will continue to write articles like this, instilling old dogma and old beliefs, until it's completely legal everywhere.

Hard Work Pays Off?

There is a large contradiction within the article that goes completely unchecked by the journalist. Since they buy the argument that marijuana is bad, it is understandable how the journalist missed it, but it is still not excusable.

Initially, the story is told as though this case was busted by pure happenstance.

“…The trafficking [went unnoticed for years] until an Illinois state trooper stopped Tamara Geagley for speeding on June 13, 2009. The trooper's dog detected the scent of the marijuana Geagley was hauling in a moving trailer registered to Giove. The subsequent search led to the seizure of roughly 350 pounds of the drug.

Authorities unloaded the drugs but allowed the trailer to proceed to its destination…Giove flew in from Virgina…only to be arrested along with Canori…”

The story is laid out by the author to suggest that a routine traffic stop uncovered the drugs.

Why, then, are 33 agencies splitting up Eric Canori's bank account? Did they do the hard work to uncover a victimless crime?

“There were a lot of long and tedious hours spent on **something like this** and we're just starting to see the benefit now,” stated one police chief.

Here is the admission that this particular case they did not spend a lot of time or money to solve, but simply that the police have been working hard, and therefore, they deserve the bank account of marijuana dealers that they catch.

A different sheriff commented on on the half a million dollars awarded to his precinct. “It's a big advtange for us. This money will help us continue to fight drug crime in the country.”

As it has been covered earlier in this article, cannabis is a medicine which has no lethal overdose. It has been considered negatively for almost a century but that tide is strongly flipping over. To suggest that marijuana inherently brings crime is a misnomer. It brings about crime because the only people the federal government allows to do business in marijuana are de facto criminals. Remove the unnecessary law that makes a plant illegal and the “crime” associated with marijuana would disappear.

One sheriff puts it bluntly, “It's certainly good to have this money available to us, especially in this financial climate.” Here we have a sheriff openly saying they are taking this money because they need it. Perhaps the omitted thought (as it is in the entire article) is that taking this money is morally wrong because the “criminal” didn't provably harm anyone in there actions? I wonder what the sheriff would have said if someone, like the journalist writing the article, questioned the motive of these agencies gobbling up Eric Canori's retirement account.

Karen Heggen, assistant district attorney, put the nail in the coffin for just how intrenched our old beliefs are about marijuana being “bad”. She said, **“It's nice to use bad money for good”.**

To be clear, she is saying that it is nice to use 'bad' money, e.g. money made from the sale of a plant, towards ending more sales of that terrible plant. The government has made the sale of cannabis a crime, but it is a victimless crime. It's actually not bad at all. The use of stolen funds to promote this sort of behavior would be called 'bad', not good, by most people.

Considering what we have covered here, how is that not doublespeak?

Reason 1 I hate mainstream news. The continual reinforcement of old dogmas even during revolutionary times. How lame is that?

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