Monday, July 13, 2020

The Paper Boy

There is a musical called Newsies about how young men delivered newspapers to homes all across the country. Back in the day it was often the first job young men (maybe young girls but nope) delivered papers to homes in communities. Subscriptions were reasonable and the cost of production was offset by ads. So it was also a way to find out what was on sale, what the local merchants had on offer or even learn about what was for sale nearby, for rent and of course all the movie schedules at the nearby theater. Today we simply glance at our magical 3x5 card or pull up the info on a laptop. Our news comes from others, largely aggregated and dissementated and we don't pay for it. We listen but we don't hear, we don't vest and more importantly we don't know.

Newspapers were the lifeblood, the were the Facebook or the Huffingon Post or the Yahoo News that came to your door, came into your home and went out into your community to actually police, to do the work so you did not have to. They went to the School Board meetings, to the Community Council ones, they asked questions, they found sources and sought information and exposed truths and more importantly lies. They wrote of life, death and everything in between. There is nothing that a newspaper does not report as all the news fit to print and all.  I never heard of news not fit and in today's climate, hookers, blow and sex are well news, it is just how it is written about that distinguishes the difference of fitness.

There are many online sources of news and information, some very valid and some less so.  Some is opinion which is not news it is opinion and some news as Emily Dickinson said:

“Tell all the Truth but tell it slant--
Success in Circuit lies
Too bright for our infirm Delight
The Truth's superb surprise

As Lightning to the Children eased
With explanation kind
The Truth must dazzle gradually
Or every man be blind--”

The slant is the way the story is told, hard or with a bend that enables one's own political or personal belief to establish tone and meaning.  It is not a tool to be used in conventional journalism but alas it is now; however, it always had as the work is often the reflection of the publisher and in turn often the owner of the paper.  Hearst newspapers of days gone by to the Murdoch ones of the present, one only has to see that name on the masthead to know what inside will have a tone, a voice that is more salacious and rapacious when it comes to certain subject.  And that also can be changed as even the Wall Street Journal wants to matter to black lives and to those who are not just denizens of Wall Street. 

With this or despite of it,  the press has been called The Fourth Estate for a reason, and without it we would have no idea what the flying fuck is going on in this land from sea to shining sea.  And there is a big land here and within it small towns, small cities and in them people who matter "irregardless" of their politics or beliefs.  For facts should matter.  And magazines and journals matter, and yes they too often reflect the owner and the publisher in tone and content, there has been a few these past few years the tech set has attempted to put its footprint on well established one.  And yet the failed to ask those who matter, those who write, edit and do the heavy lifting on how to make this viable and no it will never be profitable but like education it is for the masses. 

I look at many of the failed attempts by some of the rich and misguided to well do whatever they thought they were going to do, such as Jared Kushner and the New York Observer, when he for a hot minute was a publisher. Clearly as successful at that as he is Covid Ambassador, Middle East Peacenik, White House emissary in charge.  He has more jobs than a Jamaican Family. They at least did theirs better.   

But there are others who feel money makes up for stupid and some bilionaires are better at it than others but they love buying media. 

But ultimately when you rely on the social of media and the endless sites dedicated to whatever subject they deem important, I question the source, the legitimacy of the sourcing, if at all sourced and of course vetting and fact checking.  This from the Seattle Times discusses the end of Money magazine and yes even simple single subject magazines about tech, fashion and money matter.  And while all of them are undergoing a massive sea change with regards to diversity all of that should have come from consumers long before but there were few who actually purchased let alone cared.  Again with all this revolution happening I find it ironic that no one had ever "heard" of this racism, the Policing and and violence it brought into homes and communities. It took a pandemic where people were forced to stay home and watch a snuff film endlessly replayed for them to get woke.  Fuck that shit. Fuck you for mocking me, for ignoring others, for not giving a shit and then sitting in your living room watching a murder on a continuous loop to actually know what is happening down the street, in the city nearby, in a town, on a road, in a jail or in the country where you live.  Wow just wow, the stupid lives. 

I knew Seattle was a hot mess of white liberalness and having moved back there from San Francisco it was a simple transition and I just went back to not giving a flying fuck in anything but my living room. But it was not until I moved to Nashville to see the parallels about how systemic and institutional racism, oppression,  and more importantly MONEY falls into forcing compliance by building ignorance.  Seattle has as many educated but utterly ignorant people living there.  They have done the right thing, got a degree and a job and of course build the bubble in which they live. They eschew church and instead embrace a liberal leaning sense of politics but little changes. The election of the Socialist to the City Council is a disruption and she has a voice but is anyone really listening.  The endless parades of Mayors of color, of sexual identity have been singular.  The one black Mayor, the one Gay Male Mayor whose term ended on scandal replaced by a female version makes Seattle the checklist city in which to prove how forward, good and progressive they are.  I even remember the debate over liberal versus progressive.  Good times!

And for the record the current murder of a protestor has been largely buried in the press as the assailant was black and now it has become a blame the victim for being on a major road, at night, no discussion that the entrance to the road was blocked, Police were present enabling the protest to continue and that a man in a white jaguar came up the wrong entrance, likely on purpose, and it appears to drive deliberately into the two people, drove away and was stopped by one of the protestors who had a car parked as a type of shield to prevent such incidents, jumped into, chased the car, blocked it for Police to catch up.  Upon arrest the driver said, "Are they alright?" Really is that what you do when you drive up in the dark, on a road blocked the wrong way, drive into people as they have no business being on the road and then drive off?  Really?  When I read the once hard core liberal leaning The Stranger cover the incident and the comments I knew I was right to leave there. (Seriously a fight between two drag queens right there is "very Seattle")  This was not the case in Charlottesville and that was a white male in the daylight who drove in reverse at high speed and killed a white woman, so on that note what was the Strangers' slant then? 

We can read one press to confirm our biases or read many to get a full picture.  Artists and writers work from a perspective, they show it from full frontal to below like a child looking up, or from above in a God like watchful eye.  And it is why we have press so we can hear/see all of them.  I read the NY Post and Daily News every day as in between the hilarious titles and rants is actually local news and information.  It is written with a certain tone and in a specific voice but it is well written and in fact filled with facts buried in the opinion.  I don't think today many of us know the difference.

I have linked an article, called The Last Reporter in Town Had One Big Question for His Rich Boss, about a newsman in a small town whose paper has closed its doors, it still exists as a ghost and its death was at the hands of a venture capitalist who has no interest in anything but money. They are vultures in every sense of the word as they pick away at the bones of corpses and return to their manses and penthouses without concern. They are waited on and upon and they don't give one flying fuck about any life other than their own.  If there is one thing I learned in Nashville was that the rich like it that way as who else would do the dirty work, the heavy lifting and in turn maintaining the status and the quo. And when they cannot they rely upon the autocrats, the dictators and the President to do it for them.    If you were reading newspapers, magazines, knowing the news and information about where you live, shit you might go protest or something and that would be disturbing the way of life for those whose life you never know.  When the Big White Daddies let everyone back in the gates and toss silver coins at you, you will forget George Floyd's name and his black life along with all the others who have died at the hands of Police.   News should be free and it is on television on public radio and they do ask for donations or at least some type of cable hook up to get that much yet those who reject that pay for endless streaming services.  Ah, Hulu has a local news link to some of the networks and the nightly news.  Oh fuck that shit bitch I got to post shit on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to show I am realz and the shizznit.    Ah yes being ignorant is what they want and it is why they give you those tools for free but they mine you for something far more valuable and its cost to you is endless you fucking dipshit.  A paper costs 2 bucks but then again when you are not paid a living wage, your housing costs absorb most of your income that whatever you have left you need to buy expensive purses, shoes and shit that people see. As what you look like matters more than what you know. Being stupid is cheap and if you don't think that look to who controls you and the purse strings, they may be stupid but you let them do it.




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