News from Network

News from Network

A monument dedicated to Paddy Chayefsky could rightfully be placed at the entrance of every media establishment. A solid image of the playwright author of Network would serve as a reminder, a talisman, the same as the Roman slave in the chariot standing behind an emperor waving to a cheering populace. The lowly man held up a laurel crown of victory over the imperial head while whispering a reminder in the imperial ear about the transitory vanity of his power. So it is with Chayefsky’s masterpiece.

☞ The writer’s icon at the doorstep of journalist covens would serve as reminder, especially for those working in what’s known as legacy (Some legacy!) media. Since power is forever transitory, it should be the major responsibility of the fourth estate to assess assiduously how it slides through the hands of those worthies pretending to key positions in politics and culture. Yet so many of the journalist pack who are bent liberal, educated in matters of relativity, argue there is no such thing as truth. Collaterally, truth is what you make of it.

☞ So not much logic is ever expressed in the bombardment of so-called information assaulting the public ear and eye. But even the suppressors must rely on some aspect of logic, or logistical strategy, in their own secret committee rooms. It’s just that, on the flip side of their Janus double face, when it comes to public consumption, logic is sayonara.

☞ The latest media tool, the hip pocket doodle box, is where Chayefsky’s famous line in Network shines through: “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this any more!” In it, the sagacious fellow had paraphrased every future tweet ever tweeting through disturbed air. A mutually hellish emotion for everyone to share, as well as the reaction it provokes. And the offices of information i.e. legacy media, depend upon it quite literally, like a crutch for a leg— or brain.

☞ Lessons in logic may still occur in the university, but you’d never know it. Courts both local and distant, for example, seem to have abandoned use of the powerfully plain logic in the Constitution. Legalistic ju jitsu is required to twist that text for a desired hit. But where the rape of logic shines (if that’s the word) most brilliantly is, once again, legacy media. Those heavy lights on talking heads glow with every unpredictable evasion of truth language affords.

☞ Textbooks on rhetoric, back in the dark ages when English was actually taught, would feature a section of some sort exposing the most common logical fallacies. Those studies were based on how logical fallacies subvert that straight line of investigation in reporting what Hemingway called the great what-is-what.

☞ In every menu of logical fallacies, standing out like a scarecrow in a windy field, is ad hominem. It translates literally as “to the man.” Rhetorically it signifies, before any other consideration, personal characteristics, the worse the better. It further shoves aside any valid statement or argument “the man” might have made in his defense. Well, what defense could be made from the mouth of a liar? Think Donald Trump, think Rachel Madcow on MS NBC. Her audience so well trained, all she need utter is the dread name of the Orange Terror and half her viewers break out in a rash.

☞ If once again returned to that mythical time when English was in bloom, one could have class assignments on MS NBC and viewing Rachel Madcow by properly trained students. The assignment, more specifically, would be to police her broadcasts for LF. Why? Because she provides endless examples of unsupported declamation, manufacturing her own brand of logic, spiced at the end with that potent smirk shot from the eye of the cyclops.

☞ The other fallacy R M and her cohorts use to spice up ad hominem is “poisoning the well.” In that one, personal background is poisoned; that is, that mean ol’ ad hominem has an evil background as well. How can you trust a man who has so many cases against him? Who else has led an insurrection on our nation’s capitol? But wait! Those wells of accusation are not proven to be poisoned. No conviction. Yet Rachel will still consider that well of accusations thoroughly contaminated— as contaminated as her powers of logic, with self-satisfied smirk locked in place.

☞ A favorite in the list of sickened logic is ergo hoc, propter hoc— after this, that happens. This fallacy follows the hit parade of far out consequences, consequences so far out the sun doesn’t shine there. After this, that will happen: Let’s take it for a test run.

If you practice unsafe sex, pregnancy will happen.

If you masturbate, you will go blind

If you don’t pass this bill, democracy is threatened.
If you vote Republican, democracy is destroyed.
If you cook with gas, Earth will be destroyed.
If you drive with gas, Earth will be sucked into a black hole.

☞ Ergo hoc is known more colloquially as “jumping to conclusions.” Yet, when Rachel and her coven crew have finished analyzing an unfortunately rowdy Jan 6 demonstration motivated by a questionable election, the coven has it a greater disaster than 9/11— a case of flying to conclusions. And when Jan 6 is compared to WW II or the Civil War, it’s a flying double back-flip somersault to conclusions.

☞ Another rather logically essential item mostly silent in the mouths of talking heads reporting from doodle box or cyclops: exemplum. Rarely is any example given to support why textor or textress is mad as hell and not going to take this any more. That’s the point where acting is essential. Emotional outcries of name-calling, or invective, are rallied. The gasp, the sigh, the scream, the cry out loud— they worked on Daddy, so why not on the world?

☞ Of the few examples that really seem to be a specialty in this species of reporter is the handy “guilt by association.” Confessing to very limited exposure to legacy media, yet whenever randomly viewed, the song-and-dance is the same. An annual viewing yields the same guilt by association with interchangeable names. Just expressing two names in tandem is for Rachel M enough said, topped off with the inevitable smirk. When Barbara Walthers interviewed scumbags like Yassir Arafart, she was hailed as an intrepid reporter; when Tucker Carlson interviews Vladimir Putin, he’s a Putin lover. Countless examples of this twisted logic would be along the lines of two officials who were obviously colluding because they were seen by certain “reliable sources” to enter the Men’s Room at the very same time.

☞ But then, how could anyone deal with these matters by logically argued sequence in a doodle box. The twitterer who tweets has only a smattering of characters? Not that there’s much chance users would take advantage of more characters if available. So a Mad-as-Hell emoji should suffice.

☞ One would think that I’m-mad-as-hell messages could go on forever. But even truncated gigo emissions by doodle box are subject to censorship. Recently over the wire comes an Epoch Times [6 March 2024] headline concerning questionable information: Social Media Companies Defend First Amendment Right to Censor. That is, the right to free speech extends to the right for doodle box maestros to censor that speech. If “First Amendment Right” pleading just cause for “censorship” doesn’t win the George Orwell award, it’s hard to find a better. Right along with the decree in 1984 that “War is Peace,” we now have “Censorship is Free Speech.” Follow that line of logic.

☞ Does any of it matter? Probably not. Clear logical thinking and honest appraisal against the pandemonium of electric static has almost become as useless as any monument erected to Paddy Chayefsky. No matter how much of a prophet he might’ve been about the mind-deadening affects of “the tube,” some mad illiterate bunch from Disgruntled Lives Matter would pull it down.

JoCo, 2024


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Add Comment

Required fields are marked *. Your email address will not be published.