Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Washing the Brain

I've been busy shoveling snow today and so the lateness of this post - but I just have to comment on the coverage of North Korea this morning by Anthony Kuhn and Steve Inskeep. Here are a few of the comments these two made during this lopsided story:

  • Kuhn: "...and you know there’s the question of whether North Korea really wants to disarm, there’s a question of what North Korea’s general strategy is, and that’s where a lot of skepticism is coming from right now."
  • Inskeep: "Does he [US negotiator Christopher Hill] think that he has an agreement that can be verified and that North Korea can be assured of actually following because of course they, they violated the last one."
  • Kuhn responds: "Yes, well that’s a very serious question, and that is something that there’s a lot of skepticism about, for example Japan’s foreign minister…has already questioned whether…it can actually be implemented…many Chinese analysts are skeptical about North Korea’s real intentions…and also the former US ambassador…John Bolton said…this was a bad deal…could set an example for Iran..."

Astounding how confident these two are in their misinformation. Inskeep states "because of course they violated the last one." Did they? On what does Inskeep base this statement? Selig Harrison in Foreign Affairs notes that in fact the alleged 2002 violation may have been another deception of the frequently dishonest Bush administration. And even if the North violated some terms of the agreement, Bruce Cummings points out that in the context of Bush aggression the violation was virtually guaranteed. If Inskeep was referring to the most recent accord of 2005, even Newsweek (!) notes that the US went out of its way to provoke North Korea.

All of Kuhn's comments and remarks are based on the assumption that North Korea is completely untrustworthy (and the US is the honest broker). But take a read of this piece from The Nation and notice how it is the US that nuclearized the Korean peninsula in the first place.

Last October Diane Sawyer scored an exclusive trip to North Korea, and was clearly stunned at how brainwashed the North Korean citizens she met were. One can sympathize with the ideological rigidity of the North Koreans - after all they live under a totalitarian repressive dictatorship, but what can explain the ideological rigidity of the people like Inskeep and Kuhn who seem proud of their ignorance, their unquestioning acceptance of US government propaganda on this issue, and their own refusal to critique the wacko policies of our own "Dear Leader"?

2 comments:

jules said...

No mention this morning either of the fact that the US helped arm Saddam during Iraq's war with Iran, or that "when the Shiite had finally had enough and rebelled" that it was the US that put them up to it, and the US that left them hanging. This, coupled with the disinformation yesterday of the 1953 Iran coup, with no mention of the CIA or BP. Yep, brainwashed is the word.

Porter Melmoth said...

Mytwords said: "but what can explain the ideological rigidity of the people like Inskeep and Kuhn who seem proud of their ignorance, their unquestioning acceptance of US government propaganda on this issue, and their own refusal to critique the wacko policies of our own "Dear Leader"?"

Well, one possibility is that these and certain other NPR persons are actually in league with our own 'Dear Leader'. I mean, really, they could be. No conspiracy, just a possibility. There are so many similarities between Steve Inskeep and Tony Snow. They're part of the same package. They and so many others in both the Administration and the media deal in the same sociopathic world of detachment and ideology. And the rewards are so enticing that, for any journalist who started out as an idealistic or conscientious thinker, the consequences of becoming brainwashed or corrupted are actually pretty pleasant, and great for the ego, too. Also, now that NPR has jacked up their salaries for their star players (otherwise they'd take off for Fox, or do double whore duty, like Mara), the money ain't bad, either. Ed Murrow and H.L. Mencken may still be admired, but their spirit does not live on in the fast lane of NPR. Every once in a while there might be a glow, but hell, they even dumped Ed's voice from the 'This I Believe' intro, a totally cheap and crass decision. Probably because some bozo decided that the listening audience wouldn't know who Murrow was, or any other dopey notion you might choose. I can't shirk in my duty to toss darts at the editorial and production team behind the voices of NPR. After all, their decision-making power is just as consequential as that exhibited by the on-air fluffballs.