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The Tally Ho

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

The Morning News

So I woke up late this morning. On the radio was BBC World Service. The talk was about the ABC News Story featuring Sgt. Samuel Provance that there is indeed an ongoing cover up of prisoner abuses at Abu Ghraib. Not only that, but it was not a “few bad apples (did you really believe that in the first place?).” The guest commentator was Michael Goldfarb of WBUR, Boston. He discussed how talk radio has been pushing the “few bad apples” talking point, and how influential US talk radio is. In reference to this, Goldfarb also commented on how Americans like to believe their own myths. Perhaps that is why there is more outrage in Britain about not finding any stockpiles of WMD, or movable trailers, or whatever reason was given to invade Iraq – and then not executing a real occupation plan. Also speaking on his war experience is Sgt. Jimmy Massey in this article from the Sacramento Bee. Thanks to Daily Kos diarist Wes F.

I have become increasingly interested in visual media/visual culture and the impact that it has on opinion. One of Brian Lerher’s guests this morning was Chris Hedges, author of War Is a Force that Gives us Meaning. Hedges was booed off the stage a year ago as the commencement speaker at Rockford College (click here for text). Check the archives for the full interview. One part of the interview caught my attention. Mr. Hedges commented that not seeing what has happened to the wounded or dead influences our opinions. The wounded we see are not usually the ones that survived a car bomb but were severely wounded (also check out his article in The Nation last year). It made me think about the impact of the prison abuse pictures, pictures of the Vietnam conflict, school shootings, and the photos of New York City tenement houses by Jacob Riis. Why is it that we seem to be more moved by the visual image as opposed to the written word? Obviously this is one reason why there was an uproar over Ted Koppel reading the names of our deceased soldiers and the refusal to show pictures of caskets.

Incertus blogged about Jon Stewart's graduation speech at William and Mary.

Nick is in fact alive and well. He has had technical problem, and now a customs problem! He should be back soon.

Update: This is the latest This Modern World...


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