Breaking News – Space Aliens Invade Cleveland

My parents did not have television or the Internet. When they were kids, if they were lucky, they listened to the radio in the evening and went to a movie on the weekend. Before them, their parents didn’t have movies or radio and had to rely on making their own music, reading a book or going to a dance for entertainment.

Today we are immersed in a media culture almost every waking moment. And although, like our great grandparents, we learn from personal experience, unlike them, a very large percentage of what we think we know comes from the media culture, TV, radio, newspapers, the Internet, film and commercial music.

Saucer AttackSo, what would happen if President Obama gave a speech, at 10 am when he started his day, and told us that Cleveland had been invaded by space aliens? And what if every major media outlet from the New York Times to ABC and Reuters, repeated that Cleveland had been invaded by Space Aliens?

Most of us would be forced to treat that as the truth since the President and supposedly reputable news sources confirmed that, indeed, Cleveland had been invaded by space aliens. Well, Perhaps a caller to the Rush Limbaugh show would say that he lives in Cleveland and he sees no sign of space aliens. And perhaps a Fox News reporter could tell Obama’s Press Secretary, Jay Carney, about the Limbaugh caller. What would happen? Jay Carney would simply say that any reports about there being no invasion were mistaken or falsehoods planted by an evil, racist, homophobic TEA Party who’s agenda is to see a Black President and Savior fail.

And that would be that. Years could go by and so long as the media kept up the full court press narrative about space aliens, that fabrication would serve as your reality. How could you know any differently? Sure, you might believe Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity when they told you the story was fabricated. But then some credentialed professor or other would come on TV and solemnly tell you that Rush and Sean and the rest were anti-intellectual and racist with an agenda of seeing a Black President and Savior fail. Jay Leno would make jokes about the space alien deniers who didn’t accept the Cleveland invasion as fact and documentary movies would be made about the invasion. TV sit coms would be made about living next door to space aliens.

I know the example is a bit silly. Or is it? Have you heard the story about the George Zimmerman juror who said Zimmerman got away with murder? Do you know that the juror’s statement may have been fabricated? Slate Magazine ran a story on July 26th claiming just that.  You would think that it would be big news that a trusted news outlet fabricated something. Nope. Even more seriously, how long did the news media run with the story that the Benghazi attack was triggered by an anti Muslim movie? If there were no alternative media, would you have any way of finding out that the unemployment rate for Black teens was 41.6%?

My point is that almost everything you know about the world outside of your personal experience you learn from the media culture, including music, movies, college text books and more. That isn’t a bad thing if reporters and entertainment industry individuals are honest and have integrity or if the media were intellectually competitive. But if the media are slaves to an agenda that make them fellow travelers  in a big propaganda campaign, your ability to know the truth about anything is almost zero.

That is why I advocate that you use alternative sources, check your facts and get involved in broadcasting what you learn and what you know to others. Here’s an example of an alternative source:


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