It is plain to see that the promise of a united America with the presidency of the great “Uniter in Chief” — Barack Obama — did not happen. In fact it seems that his presidency made the divide in the U.S. even greater than before. This divide is not just political, but it spills over into every area of life. And each emotion of relationship between Americans has intensified, making the great divide even more obvious. Dislike is now disdain, disdain is now hate. What was benign acceptance has become intolerance, intolerance is now racism, xenophobia, Islamophobia, and sexism. You see the changes.
Although through human history interactions between people have always changed as life circumstances have evolved, those changes typically happen over extended periods of time. It is almost unprecedented for the social atmosphere of a nation to morph so dramatically so quickly. Why did it happen? Assuming that Barack Obama was the change agent, what fueled the sudden move from a mostly positive, kind, caring country to one uncharacteristically divisive and unseen by anyone alive today — at least seen in this country. I’m pretty sure I know: communications — specifically electronic communications via satellite and the worldwide web. The internet has changed all types of communication for almost all people.
What parent has not considered setting time limits on the use of electronics by their children? Many already have. What adults have not doubled, tripled, or even quadrupled their hours in front of the television now with the ability to surf hundreds of channels via satellite and wifi, Directv, DISH Network, Netflix, Hulu, Apple TV, Amazon, etc.? How often do you pull your smart phone out at a restaurant and check out the wifi availability? Be honest: have you ever asked a waiter for the wifi password in a restaurant? Electronic communications now dominate American life. And gone are the human emotional, sensitive, face-to-face two way communications between Americans that so filled our lives just a quarter century ago. And we don’t read anymore! The 40’s gave us radio for news and entertainment, the 50’s brought television, the 60’s and 70’s gave us improved equipment for listening and watching and cable television. The 80’s gave us computers and the internet. Cell phones came along in the 90’s along with satellite television. In the last decade, smart phones, online gaming and wifi pretty much did in the old communication ways of actually reading a newspaper, turning the channel knob between the only three television networks — ABC, CBS, and NBC — and actually playing sports. We watch EVERYTHING via satellite or online now.
We formerly received our news from a handful of radio reporters, our local newspaper or the NY TIMES, Los Angeles TIMES, Chicago TRIBUNE, or the WASHINGTON POST. And we had Walter Cronkite, Harry Reasoner, David Brinkley, Peter Jennings, and even
Barbara Walters from the three television networks. In this electronic communication era, we get our news from hundreds, even thousands of news sources. And while the news we got from those storied reporters listed above may have been
edited and politically manipulated, since there was no other news reporters or news with which to compare, we simply took their news as “truth.” Today there is no such thing — in either radio, television, or print. In this American’s opinion, this is where the angst in America primarily comes from.
How so? As never before in my 63 years the perspective of the person or persons reporting the news is now more important than the news itself, at least that coming from what I have lovingly termed the “Liberal Left Media.” No longer is it sufficient for these massive news organizations to scrub the Earth for real news, document those stories from every sector of human life, put in broadcast or written format, and give us in the news just “raw” facts. When we get those “raw” facts, they are no longer raw and often they are no longer facts. They have usually been filtered by the perspective of the news organization that distributes that “news,” and the applicable perspective for each story of the reporter or writer who presents it. Almost every major news outlet today has gone far left and therefore rarely gives unbiased, simple and factual news. And even the famous conservative news operations at FOX News — “We report, you decide” — often come now like never before with a narrative of the Fox reporter who presents each story.
Not so much from conservative news sources but those from the Left in transitioning their news operations from traditional journalistic principles to in-your-face liberal mantra have dramatically changed the news world and have changed the shape of communications between Americans. The fundamental reality of what liberalism is about dictates these drastic differences. The conservative perspective allows its constituents to think for themselves, be individualistic in their life choices, but in doing so to be responsible and mindful of all others, and “all in” with devotion to the U.S. The liberal perspective is that there need be very little getting along and acceptance of others who do not share a liberal perspective on all things. Liberalism comes with a mindset of there being one correct and therefore acceptable mindset for all. Liberals as a rule feel their way is the only way about all things American. This is dramatically illustrated in politics. And it has in the last eight years stolen the individual mindsets and creative thinking of many Americans who have simply turned their thoughts and communication over to others — to the Liberal Left. Liberals enjoy that wholesale transfer from everyday Americans. Why? Their mindset is that they and only they know what’s best for every American and that THEY can make better decisions than any Americans can for themselves.
No place is this more obvious than in television news today. One can put 6 televisions side by side each tuned to either ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, CNN, and FOX News to see the stark contrast. At the same broadcast times of day almost every day, ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, and CNN give their news about almost identical stories while FOX News is reporting completely different occurrences. When confronted with these differences, those 5 news networks all pretty much point out that FOX News is “way out there” and that the Liberal Left stations have the pulse of Americans and therefore their news is the correct news. Why? Because they said so. And Middle America told these Liberal Left news entities how wrong that thinking is in the November Presidential election. But even with that defeat, liberalism dictates a continued stubborn trek for communication control.
Is it too late to turn this large ship of communications in the lives of Americans back to style and substance to achieve better, more civil, and more accurate communications, even in news? Do we even need to try to do that? We desperately need to tackle that task. Why? “Low information voters” are Americans who each have a vote. And each of those votes plays a role in shaping what our nation actually is from election cycle to election cycle. We need a populace that is REALLY educated with facts, that no longer relies on others for their understanding of things in their lives, but investigate to get answers to their questions themselves, discuss those with others, and formulate life changing positions through their own communications.
Here’s the rub — and it’s really scary: if we do NOT do this, we will very quickly find ourselves living in a political state that is structured the way others want it structured in total disregard of the opinions of Americans. How is that possible? THEY know what they want and are willing to pay any communication price necessary to get it, using all the communication methods they have to do so. If Americans sit quietly and watch, we will watch the fundamental transformation of our nation that Obama swore to lead actually materialize. That nation state is Socialism.