Thoughts On News, Healthcare And SCOTUSJune 29, 2012 - Author: newscoma - Comments are closed
As we sat and waited to hear how SCOTUS was going to rule yesterday on healthcare and the complete numbnuts handling by the mainstream media, I found myself mildly irritated. I wanted to know the facts of this moment in American political history but everything got muddled.
And then when I saw that actually finding a nuts and bolt old school journalism take on the ruling was going to take a bit of time. Lots of punditry, mind you, but a breakdown took time. I understand that, the ruling was nearly 200 pages long. First is the not the definition for right. In this day and age, it’s 30 damned seconds in this new world of journalism and sometimes it shouldn’t be. It still took time to find a story that wasn’t about the politics of the decision and not the facts of what SCOTUS did.
Jeez Louis, CNN and FOX both botched up their coverage of the ruling so badly that its going to be a joke for a long time to come. (Kudos to CBS and Scott Pelley who were reasonable and explained the ruling very well. I need to remember that when I want national news in the future.)
During all this every photo meme in the world (so many of them highly inaccurate I might add) was being shared on several social media platforms, I had to back away from the computer. And honestly, I felt pretty good about that the Affordable Care Act ruling although I know there are flaws in it, but I do believe it is a start. Congratulations where absolutely in order, and for those folks who were disappointed, it’s everyone’s right to complain.
When the memes become more important than what actually happened though, it got a bit much. So I decided to educate myself and read the pdf of the decision (which took awhile) and contacted a couple of journalists I knew who are non-partisan to get their takes on it.
You see, I’m not a lawyer but I want to know what this means so when people ask me (and they have because of what I do for a living) that I can give a reasonable and factual answer.
And, damn, I love snark better than anyone but right now there isn’t any actual conversation happening about this on either side of the aisle. Policy is a weird thing and when it makes it to the Supreme Court, it gets a lot more complicated. Healthcare, and I think Charter Schools will fall into the category, is a tricky when it comes to conveying the message about what is actually happening in a reasonable way. Snark is snark, but it isn’t news.
It was Plato who said “No law or ordinance is mightier than understanding.”
I have learned that just because you have a computer and access to funny pictures or memes doesn’t mean those things are accurate. Hell, I’ve fallen victim to some of the rhetoric before as well and I own it, but the whole bottom line is that when folks are more concerned with being clever, there is a lost opportunity to educate about things that matter.
The message is lost and dammit, regular people need to know the facts not a bunch of punditry and today everyone is a pundit.
I think this Washington Post story is probably one of the better things that I’ve read about what will and won’t happen when it comes to the SCOTUS ruling.
I get a little heat from time to time that I believe there is a way to communicate with people that are different from me. Hell, my grandfather was the chair of the Republican Party at one time where I’m from and his best friend at the time was head of the Democratic local branch. They were buddies and teased each unmercifully but they respected each other. Politics was different back then. I think it goes without saying that there is a big difference between Eisenhower and someone like John Boehner.
They respected and believed in government and politics.
My point is that no one is going to listen to anyone if they are being insulted. And there is a great deal of purple voters in this state that honestly really do want to vote for what’s right and only want to feel like they matter, that they are validated. If that is ignored, then everyone loses. The thing is when being given so many different fragmented issues, the message gets not only muddled but lost completely. And in many ways, that is what I saw yesterday.
For everyone hammering Chief Justice John Roberts, my take is simple. I want every justice to follow the constitution and the law. All of them, each and everyone who sets on the bench should honestly not be political at all and should be about the law. It’s OUR constitution. And honestly, I want each Justice to do what is right for this country. I lost a lot of confidence in them the past 12 years and I’m still not happy in the least about Citizens United. So when you see friggin’ pundits like Glenn Beck selling T-Shirts about Roberts calling him a coward and then the fact that he will profit off this moment of pop/political culture is just gross.
Pundits aren’t news either.
I know. Teal Deer but I can’t help but think of all the opportunities we are losing in educating real Americans about how politics actually works.