It's handy deciding what is reported on the TV news and how it is reported. Here's a small example. I actually don't watch too much local news because it's pretty bad, very provincial. On comes a story about county supervisors who were "forced" to vote to close a number of fire stations because "voters" refused to pass a parcel tax to pay to keep them open.
A parcel tax is a homeowners tax, or property tax. These taxes on workers and the middle class are put on the ballot as the only way we can save education, save public services etc. I never support these taxes because they don't save what they are claimed to and it is simply continuing the assault on workers and the middle class and lastly, it makes it harder to build a united mass movement that can go after the minority who actually are stealing all the money.
So the reason that there are potential life threatening closures of fire stations is the voters won't increase their own taxes and reduce their disposable income. There is no way one could come away with a different conclusion and that's intentional, it was stated as such.
The reporter could have said: "Due to the 6 trillion dollars or so of taxpayer money that Washington and the Pentagon are spending on wars to secure profits for US corporations abroad, Americans will have to do without vital services at home."
Or he could have said: "Due to the massive accumulation of wealth by fewer and fewer individuals and their shifting of this wealth , more than $26 trillion of it, in to offshore tax havens, Americans will have to do without more and more public services."
On the other hand, the reporter could have quoted Business Week, a very sober and astute journal of the 1% that warned over thirty years ago, " It will be a hard pill for many Americans to swallow--the idea of doing with less so that big business can have more...Nothing that this nation, or any other nation, has done in modern economic history compares with the selling job that must be done to make people accept this reality. " Business Week 10-12-74. He then could have apologized but added that we can't say we weren't warned.
All the above would be true of course. But why tell the truth. As I reported on this blog some time ago, I was sitting in my bosses office in my capacity as a shop steward one day and as he was out copying some document I glanced at the book he was reading. I didn't get past the first page and the advice from the author who wrote:
"If you're going to strive to motivate workers through autonomy and empowerment, it's important to remember that the primary burden is to make sure employees believe what you say. Don't tell them you want them to be empowered to increase the company's profits. Tell them you want them to be empowered because it's the best way to remain competitive and guarantee everyone their jobs." Carl Robinson, Vice President, Organizational Psychologists.
But that's the advantage of owning the media and the means of information in society. It has a class point of view. It's not an accident that the dominant ideology in feudal times was the Divine Right of Kings. The king was king by the grace of the creator of all life. I wonder where that idea came from.
And the story immediately following the one about stupid voters that put their community in danger because they didn't want to raise their taxes? A detailed report on fraud and waste among public sector workers.
And there's no such thing as class war!