NPR, Rush, Hannity, and Me: Reflections on a PBS Documentary & a Ride Worth Taking

I find the whole politics thing to be exhausting.  I feel like it’s a media full of talking heads touting half truths, and mostly just rhetoric to sway our under-educated public–who has been intentionally trained to NOT think critically–for personal agendas.

On one hand, I forgive them because they’re just trying to make money.  Everybody likes money, even when we hate it, we like it.  On the other hand, I am disgusted & totally overwhelmed by the task of sussing out the truth.  I am not willing to take anybody’s word for it.  My dad believes everything Fox News & Rush Limbaugh say.  Fella believes everything that comes from sources he perceives as “liberal” or “socialist.”  I find myself holding my breath and suspending judgement most of the time.

Last night, Fella and I watched a Frontline documentary that examined the national debt.  The documentary explained that the budget deficit creates the national debt over time, and that there have only been 4 of the last 50 years in which there was actually a budget surplus, and so the national debt shrank instead of grew.  These were four of Clinton’s years.

Between Williamsport and Harrisburg, there’s a seriously sketchy public radio section, so today I thought I’d try out the AM dial, because I love me some talk radio.  I would rather listen to talk–even conservative pundits–than classical music or country or top 40, which were my options.  P.S., AM radio ads are completely hilarious.  It was like being transported back to 1962.

Hoo doggy.  I got to hear Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity.  The only one I absolutely WON’T listen to is that crazy Mormon, Glenn Beck.  I would laugh at his verbal hijinks if I could, but mostly I find him to sound like a poorly informed conspiracy theorist.  It’s no wonder that most of his books are made of pictures & hopelessly skewed infographics.

So today, I heard Rush say that Obama is single-handedly responsible for ruining the economy.

WTW?  Pretty sure it was less than a year into his presidency when he had to make a pretty hard decision about allocating public money for some banks, the auto industry, and a ridiculous number of American Mortgages.

How is that ANY politician’s fault?  Even Bush’s?  That was a economic tsunami that didn’t just well up overnight.  That thing was YEARS–and I would posit Clinton/Bush years–in the making.

I heard Hannity say that Obama’s approval rating is at 43%, and that only 27% of Americans identify themselves as liberal.  Pretty good, Obama!

Hannity’s thing was that people are so disgusted by the connotation of the liberal label that they will call themselves anything but.

I mean, maybe that’s true if you’re Hannity, but I’d be a lot less embarrassed to say that I’m a liberal than to say I’m a tea partier.  I’m neither, truthfully.  I call myself a libertarian, but only because it’s so extreme that I don’t have to marry a single ideology, and because I love the IDEA of a very, very tiny government–but culturally, we’re way past that.  Much as I want to, we’ll never be back to the 1890s governance, or lack thereof.

Most accurately, I’m sympathetically unaffiliated.  Whatever I call myself, I can’t vote in primaries–which are the ones that matter–unless I call myself Rep or Dem.  Which I can’t.

Then, when I finally got close enough for WVIA (Williamsport’s public radio), I heard them talking about how the smear Mitt Romney campaign is in full effect EVERYWHERE, and that the Republican ticket is looking weak sauce regardless.

Whatever.  I like listening to Obama quip.  I think he’s wicked smart and/or he has awesome speech writers.  I think he’s also got a terrific sense of humor & must be the most insanely logical person in the world. I love that we haven’t heard about him schtupping interns, or lavishly vacationing on a golf course in Tahiti.  So if he’s doing those things, at least he’s got it on the DL.  If we have him for another 4 years, I’m good with that.  If we get a republican, that’s okay, too.  I don’t think that the political affiliation of the nation’s leader really matters at all because our political system is BROKEN.

As we watched that Frontline documentary, they aired clips from CSpan after Obama submitted his healthcare plan, and it seemed to me like congresspeople and senators are just a bunch of whiny, entitled, rich people who only care about continuing to be in the public eye and arguing over what insanely off-kilter thing they believe their constituents to want, even though they’ve never asked them.

What the hell?  They’re not the reasonable, articulate, well-researched negotiators they should be, they’re middle school students on a playground in very expensive suits who’ve apparently mostly forgotten their very expensive educations.

The only people who really have a voice are the people who have enough money to buy powerful ears.  That’s not most of us.  So I’m just going to buckle in for the ride, and try to get less fat so if shit goes too bad, they’ll let me into Switzerland.

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Author: April Line Writing

Writing about whatever the f*ck I want.

1 thought on “NPR, Rush, Hannity, and Me: Reflections on a PBS Documentary & a Ride Worth Taking”

  1. Yeah, the secret hidden underneath the bickering is that each side, liberal and conservative, gets some things wrong and some things right. Unfortunately, the “disciples” of both sides don’t see that. Nice blog!!

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