CNN has decided this week to be the Cancer News Network. Just as it
was wrapping up its wall-to-wall coverage of Elizabeth Edwards and
the return of her cancer, the ethics of staying in the campaign and
then every pundit in the free world weighing in on the issue they
have now moved on to White House Press Secretary Tony Snow and the
return of his cancer. Now if Cancer News Network wants to do some
good, they'll talk about the real cancers in this country, and there
are plenty; no, not the tumors growing in Elizabeth or the lesions in
Tony Snow, but the terminal cancers festering in the political
system, in the heartland of America, and on the news networks.
First, let's talk about the cancer that is festering in the American
news media. It started small, but has become a giant malignant tumor
that is killing the news agencies. We'll call it non-surgical
protitizationoma. Our news is one step short of Entertainment
Tonight, Inside Edition or American's Most Wanted. Our journalists
don't ask tough questions, don't do much research, take press
releases as fact, report things from the web that have no basis in
fact, and if a celebrity OD's they go in to overdrive. And we, the
nation, are dying because of this. We are ill-informed, informed with
a bias, and have to search out many sources of news to try and figure
it all out.
I was in Ireland for St. Patrick's day this year...I go every year. I
sat at the Schoolhouse Pub with liberal commentator and friend Bill
Press. He was in town at my urging. There we sat, reading real news,
watching real news on Sky news, the BBC
News and even CNN International. We were discussing all the stories
we don't see in the United States about the United States, about the
coverage of Iraq that we don't see and how if we did see it this way,
the war would end in a week. Take the Sky News body count I saw on
Wednesday while there. Since Monday, 179 civilians killed, 23 troops
killed, so 200 plus innocent people dead. Insurgents? 17 dead. 200
good guys, 17 bad guys, yes, we're having our asses handed to us. Or
take Sky News feature "Inside Iraq Week." Their journalists don't
stay in Baghdad, they venture out to the real Iraq and show it on TV.
They interview a soldier, British, who asks Tony Blair, "Why are we
here, what are we doing? What is our mission and when can we come
home?" Don't see that much on our television. They gave cameras to
Iraqis for a week and then showed the video. A Sunni woman married to
a Shia who begs American mothers to not send their children in to
this troop surge. She thanked us for our help but said anyplace we go
there is violence and death and it is time for peace, or even if we
leave and there is violence, it is time the conflict take its course
and end. She was in tears. So was I.
I watched the news in Ireland and Britain all week and came home and
now I can't do my normal daily activities. Normally, I wake up, turn
on CNN in my bedroom, and MSNBC in the kitchen. Well, I can't.
Because I don't hear the news I want. So now, I use my computer and
stream the news over the web. The malignancy of profit driven news
agencies has consumed our media and it is on life support.
What about the cancer that is Washington D.C. these days? We'll call
it elected official fearanoma. I openly laughed this week when I read
the Chuck Hagels interview where he said that if things don't change
he's aware that impeachment is a possible solution. I laughed because
I thought about teaching math to a pig, it usually just pisses of the
human and frustrates the pig, but once in a blue moon the pig gets a
right answer. So, Mr. Hagel, you FINALLY read the Constitution? It
just dawned on you that impeachment is an option when the president
has become a dictator? Please, keep reading, it's a good document.
And then, do something. All of you, and I mean everybody in Congress
and the Senate, is so busy with their own agendas they aren't doing
anything. This bill to bring the troops home was, in fact, Political
Theatre and I hate when the monkey-in-Chief gets something right. It
won't pass the Senate, and if it does it will get Vetoed and when
that happens you won't band together for the rest of the country and
override the veto. So, back to square one. Weeks wasted while more
die. All because some of you are running for president, others
running for reelection and yet others living in some haze of
complacency. Your cancer is terminal. You are weakened by it and do
nothing. You're not taking aggressive steps to cure it.
And then there's the possibly terminal case of Lack of Reality
Carcinoma. We are at war and we, the people, sacrifice nothing,
demand nothing, expect nothing. Instead of tax increases, you get a
tax break. Instead of demanding that Hummer stop producing their gas
guzzling completely unnecessary vehicles for the self indulgent and
retool their factories to make the Cougar vehicles that are needed in
Iraq to keep our troops safe from IEDs you rent limos made of these
beasts so your daughter can arrive at her prom in style. In WWII we
made a plane an hour, yet, not one U.S. plant has retooled for the
war. Your light bill should be double, the same with gas at the pump.
Why? To make the companies switch to green fuels, renewable
resources. Most of you haven't called your power company to see if
you are getting greener energy, don't know your carbon imprint on the
planet, nothing. Why is this important? Because Osama attacked us
because we have bases is Saudi Arabia. We are at war in Iraq
protecting oil reserves and are about to go to war with Iran. We need
to leave the middle east entirely and that means leave their oil
behind. Not in 100 years, but now. We have the technology, but you
have to pay for it. And you won't. Do you go to city council meetings
and demand that all new construction in your city is energy self-
sufficient? Have you priced solar for your home? Do you drive a
hybrid if you can? What's the last thing you said to your
Congressman? Senator? Sacrifice, we simply haven't. Most of you
haven't even sacrificed your children, and that includes George Bush.
For most of you, it 's not your kids fighting. No, the cancer of
apathy, of gluttony, of conspicuous consumption grows stronger every
day. But hey, there are important issues out there. I mean, Sanjaya
is still on Idol and Heather Mills hasn't danced her leg off yet.
There are a lot of cancers in this country, and not just in Elizabeth
Edward's rib or Tony Snow's liver. No, cancers of all types are
creeping in to our every day life through the media, through our own
inaction, through our politicians. It has all become toxic, and no
amount of radiation is going to cure it. What is the cure? Ask any
cancer survivor. Resolve. Sacrifice. Action.
It is not a given that the U.S. will remain the world's super power
forever. In fact, history says it won't. If we don't cure these
aggressive cancers growing in our media, in our government and in our
society, we will fade away and become a shell of what we once were.
What about me? Well, I have a solar representative coming out to Park
Howard (my home) next week. I have called Southern California Edison
and asked if they carry green power. They said no, and I asked Why
not? And plan on pursuing that. I only drive my car three times per
week and walk or bike and have moved my studio to my home so I don't
need to commute. Every lightbulb in the house is energy efficient. I
have swapped out my dishwasher, stove and refrigerator for more
energy efficient models. I write my Senator and Congress person
weekly about issues, and I speak loudly on my show about these very
things. I have switched how I get the news so I am sure to get a dose
of what is really going on. I'm doing all I can to make sure that
these cancers that are growing don't spread to me as well. I am
fighting a good fight, like Elizabeth and Tony.
Editor's Note: Due to objectionable content, this post was edited by the author after its original version.