". . . But the past does not exist independently from the present. Indeed, the past is only past because there is a present, just as I can point to something over there only because I am here. But nothing is inherently over there or here. In that sense, the past has no content. The past -- or more accurately, pastness -- is a position. Thus, in no way can we identify the past as past." p. 15

". . . But we may want to keep in mind that deeds and words are not as distinguishable as often we presume. History does not belong only to its narrators, professional or amateur. While some of us debate what history is or was, others take it into their own hands." p. 153

Silencing the Past: Power and the Production of History (1995) by Michel-Rolph Trouillot

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Listening to the Locals: North Dakota

Adam Blomeke, a blogger at the site, North Decoder, writes about Our State's political state on Daily Kos today.

Read it here.

He says, "It's exciting for North Dakota to finally be a player in the electoral college." Though I haven't lived in ND since leaving it at age 18, I feel the same way.

Ed Schultz and his liberal radio show (he bills it as "Where America Comes to Talk"), which he started on a Fargo radio station, has had a lot to do with this, it may well be. In other words, Air America has had an effect, despite its very low numbers, i.e. funding and access -- and even though it's gotten too limousine liberal for me, owned by the big real estate Greene family here in NYC now. It didn't start that way. It's shifted way right, er, centerist, since they took it over. It's all about Ariana Huffington, Robert J. Kennedy, Jr., Mark Greene and other wealthy Dem elite celebrities.

Nevertheless, it seems to me that the rank-and-file Air America crew has worked tirelessly and enthusiastically since its inception during the darkest days of the regime that seemed to be permenently installed as the single oligarchical ruling class, as the neoCONs blithely, publicly, declared was the Goal.

Starting with the splendid, highly educated, highly articulate Laura Flanders, who travels constantly around the nation, connecting activist communities to each other from Utah to Louisiana (and which it seems to me Ed Schultz has imitated with his "Town Halls", though he charges admission to them, like everything else in his heavily merchandized bully pulpit). She gave us hope. She showed us we were not as alone, as solitary, as isolated as we felt. And if we would get off our duffs, and connect again with our communities, we can make a difference.

It seems to me, since Air America gave Schultz its prime slot, the noon to 3 gig, is that he's far better than Tom Hartman, who had the slot prior to Ed (Al Franken had it first). Hartman started as a CON, before seeing the light, and it shows. He wastes far too airtime by giving it away for days at a time going to cover rightwing gatherings and letting them talk. The right wing owns the primary media; they don't need the air time -- and besides they loathe the Fairness Doctrine and got it repealed, allowing Limbaugh to thunder hate speech for decades now to all of the U.S.A that isn't pockets with more choice in radio listening like NYC.

Schultz, also, when times get really rough, as they did immediately post the mcpln bounce and coo, never loses faith. He keeps people going. And again, for anyone living where you have no choice in radio other than limbaugh and religous armageddon broadcast, Schultz and everything on Air America is a tonic beyond price. Even in NYC, with the largest public radio broadcasting station in the country, having an alternative to the corporate blandness and determination not to offend their big corporate sponsors and doners -- who are, well, corporations and definitely not leftist, much less Democrat -- Big Eddie and Air America can be a great antidote.

When they brought in Rachel Maddow, I quit listening to "All Things Considered." The bland lies ATC propagates, their slants of unexamined assumption and statement as facts things that are not, have just become too slimey to swallow without either gagging or yelling, and I don't want to expend energy doing either.

I just wish Ron Kuby were more of something or other, or less. I'm not sure. When I heard him the other day blithering on with a neoCON attorney about why the whole idea of a Fairness Doctrine in broadcasting in this day and age was risible, I had to restrain myself from going to the show's blog and writing a whole chronology of what has happened to the news media since the corporate media moguls got the Fairness Doctrine repealed. The consequences? Iraq, for one. The theft of one, if not two, national elections.

A proof? Today in the NY Times there's a story about the nervous nelly Dems who won't allow themselves to believe that perhaps the Dem candidate will become POTUS, despite the many favorable signs. The article blithely mentions in passing the reasons Dems are such nervous nellies this year, "one if not two elections stolen." This is the first time the NY Times has ever acknowledged that the 2000 election WAS stolen. If it wasn't for the repeal of the Fairness Doctrine they might have had to admit much, much ealier, because the news journalism on the old school public broadcasting networks would have said so, the alternate weekly papers (which no longer exist other than to provide adverstising to local communities for escort services, etc.) would have beat the drums about it, and so on and so forth. So this is why despite how obviously intelligent Kuby is, he puts forth way too often some really ignorant ideas. He spent far too much time as the only nonwhackorightwingnut with Curtis Sliwa. He still hasn't purged himself of all he's unconsciously absorbed from that long-time, lucrative gig. Time for him to get over it.

Air America also receives the accolade of providing the first Female, Lesbian, Leftist, Rhodes Scholar and Ph.D. in Political Science, political pundit, Rachel Maddow to the wider world of prime time television political punditry.

Laura Flanders and Rachel Maddow. That's pretty darned good. But the Greenes have determined Laura not rich / successful / celebrity enough to have a show on here, in NYC, the Air America flagship station. That is bad. Very, very bad. And stupid too.


K. said...

I agree with you about Hartman giving way too much time to the nut cases. Also, he throws his Christianity in our faces as if secular perspectives are somehow less valid. I do like the weekly Brunch With Bernie (Sanders) feature.

Whether in spite of or because of the clowning, I get a kick out of Stephanie Miller.

Can't say I'm an Ed Schultz fan myself. As with Hartman, there's too much self-promotion, plus he's so shrill.

Foxessa said...

You'd know Hartman a lot better and closer than I because he's from Seattle.

He started as a CON, and he's proud of it.

There are too many of those guys, who found the CON field too crowded and jumped. They weren't the best either.

Schultz is another one.

With Laura Flanders and Rachel Maddow there's none of that! They never have been, are not now, and never will be, no matter what, one of Those.

Love, C.