Conservative television is poisoning local TV networks. Sinclair Broadcasting, which owns the highest number of television stations in the U.S., is forcing local affiliates to pump out pro-Trump, anti-media (and anti-truth) propaganda – often over their objections. See the CNN video and article below. The media can’t be free if one company owns a critical a mass of stations. This is poisonous slime and has to be resisted.
CNN article Sinclair promos
If you want to laugh, and simultaneously see a demonstration of Christopher Hitchens’ wit, you have to watch this fourteen minute video. A Christian radio show host (a Mr. Todd Friel) sets up a highly ridiculous premise for a game show called “What If?”. The game entails the said Christian radio show host pretending his beliefs are facts, and asking Hitch what he would do in particularly absurd circumstances. The amusing part is that Christopher treats each question as if it’s being asked by a legitimate journalist, answers the questions wryly and sharply, and does not get caught in any of the not-difficult traps set by Mr. Friel.
The funniest exchange happens toward the end of the interview:
Friel: Sir, is it possible that the reason you rage so much against God is because you just want to live your own autonomous way, living anyway that you want to, any lifestyle that you prefer, without being accountable to your creator?
Hitchens: I think that’s highly probable, yes
While China has made some great strides modernizing and engaging the world in the last several decades, it can still be relied upon to do some good old fashioned book banning. Once again, Orwell’s Animal Farm made the cut. They also banned the letter “N”, so don’t throw that letter around lightly if you are in China (that letter ban has since been reversed). Christopher was a great admirer of George Orwell and his “Why Orwell Matters“, as he would say, can be found at fine bookstores everywhere.
In this talk, Hitchens critiques the “Ten Commandments”, shows how they are man-made, and suggests three better, new commandments. The new suggestions start at about 35:00.
God is not Great: a great read, but if you prefer, you can listen to Hitch read it. Enjoy.
At the end of this event with Tony Jones, Hitch got rousing applause and did a sort-of encore, where he sang “The Philosopher’s Song.” Earlier in the interview he did parts of it, but here is the full rendition. If you have more time, the entire interview is excellent and finds Hitch at his best.
Senator Jeff Flake (Arizona) in his address to Congress on January 17th, made the point that dictators around the world are following Trump’s lead by calling any news they don’t like, fake. This CNN article examine’s its influence in Southeast Asia.
The most significant line in the article comes from a former Al Jazeera journalist (now a professor of journalism at Queensland University) who spent more than 400 days in captivity in Egypt after being convicted of spreading fake news, who said ” Trump has “shown no inclination to criticize or oppose (authoritarian) regimes.”
Full Article from CNN:
Asia’s strongmen follow Trump’s lead on fake news by Euan McKirdy, CNN