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A quote you see everywhere is Gandhi's line about being the change you want to see in the world. Since I'm a corny guy, I took that to heart. Here are some of the main problems with the establishment media that I want to help change:

1.    They are the establishment. They don't challenge the politicians, the government or the system. They are perfectly content to help maintain the status quo.

2.    They trade access for positive coverage. In order to get political officials on their shows, they treat them with kid gloves. The single largest factor in making political decisions is campaign donations, yet they almost never ask them about that or talk about it on any of their shows.

3.    They do non-stop talking points, yet no one ever says anything. It's just people talking past each other in a very boring, scripted movie we've seen before.

4.    They confuse neutrality with objectivity. If the Cowboys and Steelers play and the Steelers win 21-0, and you say the Cowboys and Steelers both played equally well - you have lied to your audience. You are neutral, but nowhere near objective.

So, we set out to do a political talk show where we break all of those rules. This is the beginning. We hope you join us somewhere down this road. Together, let's be the change we want to see in the media.

You Can Participate in the Show (Current, 7PM ET) By Clicking Here

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Comment Preferences

  •  Good luck with your show, Cenk. (13+ / 0-)

    The problem with media is just an example with the problem with our system: the wealthly rule.  Where corproate control does not always dictate specific stories, it limits the scope of acceptable coverage (don't crtique the system too deeply) and many in media share a class perspective of the 1%.

    I'm from the Elizabeth Warren and Darcy Burner Wing of the Democratic Party!

    by TomP on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 08:47:41 AM PST

    •  2nd that, and with a Rec. as well to the comment. (5+ / 0-)

      "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible, will make violent revolution, inevitable." - President John F. Kennedy (1917 - 1963)

      by LamontCranston on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 09:22:21 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  No. The Problem is the Bill of Rights. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Press freedom is specifically a corporate right, not a human right. Humans don't "press," businesses do.

      The 1st amendment gives those corporations sweeping carte blanche to promote their interests and to fight all others, including those of the people, the nation and humanity.

      There does not exist in our system a role of informing the people or of hosting civic discourse.

      The press are corporations; they're sponsored by corporations; some are owned by corporations.

      It's their Constitutional JOB to promote the corporate agenda.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 09:36:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  here is a clue (9+ / 0-)

    DONT have politicians or their stooges on your show.  WHats the point?

    Also dont have some talking head pundit? whats the point?

    If you have someone on, they should be an expert in that field who doesnt have skin in the game.  Talking physics, OK lets have a physicist on to talk about Higgs..but why oh why do we have to have the same talking heads on... Oh thats right, filler.

    Its all about just lazy producing, filling up the allotted time, so we can sell ad time.

    There is so much happening in this world every single day, and you never ever know it given 99% of our media.

    Cenk you guys do a good job, Ratigan, Keith, and Maddow do a good job, but you and they are the exception and to be honest, there are days even you guys seem to put the whole show on cruise control.

    Its just beyond crazy that we have the worst nuclear disaster in the world still unfolding, and its never,ever even being mentioned. WTF?

    There is so much to talk about, yet all the media chooses to grab is the lowest hanging fruit. Its pathetic, but then again it makes sense if you realize, they are the news, but just a channel looking to sell ad time, using news as the shtick and filler.

    Bad is never good until worse happens

    by dark daze on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 08:54:14 AM PST

  •  nothing changes until Media Central -- (5+ / 0-)

    the five or six corporate entities which own most outlets -- are broken up into thousands of local entities.

    If the FCC made a "1 corporation, 1 market, 1 outlet" rule, for instance; or if there were a drive to get local channels under local control through eminent domain; or a boycott of cable forcing them to breakup; or if there were systematic and serious license challenges... or all of these plus more... then we'd see real change start to happen.

    It's always been a delusion of the left that if we only had our own competing "liberal" media within the mass-reach media formats, we'd win. imo, that's nonsense and unnecessary.

    All we really need is to have enough variety of ownership that there couldn't be today's Media Central, where, either through the chance of common interests or through deliberate choice, the identical message is given to the entire population every day, all day long.

    "Whatever you do, don't mention The War." Basil Fawlty, while mentally impaired.

    by Jim P on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 09:00:24 AM PST

    •  That's Not Nearly All We Had Last Time the Media (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Jim P, Puddytat

      were reasonably journalistic. We had competition from the signing of the Constitution but outlets were functioning as quasi political parties, defrauding us into wars, throwing elections and trials, and promoting financial scams the whole time up to the New Deal.

      What happened then was the imposition not only of ownership limits, but of frequent licensing for broadcast outlets which required demonstration of programming in the public interest. To keep the feds hands off the lucrative entertainment programming, almost all outlets set up news departments and kept them insulated from sales. It was their news that they offered as proof of public service, and they had to run announcements soliticiting public comment about it to show to the feds.

      That was much more important than the "fairness" doctrine.

      I'm fairly sure that the rise of broadcast jounalism, which took away newspapers' ability to do breaking stories, pressured them to compete for in-depth investigative reporting that broadcast didn't have the time to do.

      What we should do today to try to restore that is nationalize the infrastructure of all distribution including cable and satellite so that FCC licensing could be required for all forms of broadcast.

      That would give us back the best journalistic environment we ever had. I don't know if modern economics could overpower it but that's the only scheme that ever came close to working here.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 09:42:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  yeah that's part of the freedom (0+ / 0-)

        free to incite...

      •  Good points all. (0+ / 0-)

        The salient feature of today's Media Central is that the voices of ordinary people are kept out of any discussion. Sure, they'll do sound bites or emails and then move on to the next one with no follow-up or follow-through. But you'll never see a union worker or an office cleaner on any show concerning economics.

        It is very instructive to read various studies of the Press in Stalin's day. A few books have been translated into English which excerpt items from Pravda and Izvestia. You can see local party officials and big managers being charged in letters to the editor with corruption, all sorts of political rants, hell, even debates about proposed new laws. If someone were to say, "the state controls the message" you could point to tons of examples of people criticizing the state and key actors. (Except Stalin.)

        What you cannot see are the topics left out of discussion entirely; challenges to the orthodoxy of the day and to the establishment itself; exposés of how real power works... The entire enterprise was kabuki. Except for the heavy-handedness of the propaganda pieces, it was practically indistinguishable from the Press we have today. There's a bit more latitude in what our reporters can do, but if you are a Gary Webb or a Dan Rather and you pull the wrong tails... your career is over. No Black Marias arriving in the middle of the night, but then, they aren't needed. Everybody knows their place in journalism.

        "Whatever you do, don't mention The War." Basil Fawlty, while mentally impaired.

        by Jim P on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 11:37:08 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  I wouldn't be watching Current TV (10+ / 0-)

    If it wasn't for the pirate live TV feeds on the internet. Just so you know. In my household, and more and more others, cable TV is a non-starter.

    It would be a wee bit more modern if Current had their own live feed instead of trying to convince those cable TV providers to carry them.

    •  This is a great comment. (5+ / 0-)

      I cut my cable over the ridiculous pricing and because I took extreme umbrage at my cable company offering rates that are half of what I paid to new customers and offering a very paltry discount to me when I complained.

      I haven't missed it at all since it was basically 200 channels of mostly crap with a few worthwhile things thrown in. I have been very happy with catching local channels over the air and relying on Roku for the rest. We feel that our TV habits have altered for the better - less time watching but enjoying what we watch a lot more and money saved.

      BUT I was astonished to find that something I just took for granted- that I would be able to find live streaming news turned out to be an illusion for the most part. CNN and MSNBC are pretty much just a few podcasts. You can subscribe to a streaming CNN IF you have a cable company subscription!

      This is all just so shortsighted on the part of the channels that I just can't believe it. Lots of people are foregoing cable, especially young people who are getting their media almost exclusively from their notebooks, tablets, etc. If the channels have committed themselves to cable exclusivity, they need to rethink that policy ASAP.

      Do you know what is EASY to find as live streams on the Net? FOX NEWS!!! Also Al Jazeera has a live news stream and it's pretty good news with an international slant. But that's about it.

      If other people know differently, please post.

      “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.” FDR

      by Phoebe Loosinhouse on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 09:18:32 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  to get Current TV on FIOS here (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Puddytat, Crider, Phil N DeBlanc

      Id have to pay another 15.99 a month because of the way they bundle it. Right have I have a deal with Verizon where they basically threw in the cable.  If prices go up again I'm dropping cable

      Ive told them over and over consumers want a la cart choices. I'd pay for Current

  •  New show and new sets look great Cenk! (6+ / 0-)
  •  Good points. And good luck (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Puddytat, George Pirpiris

    One request: please talk about Tom Cruise more.  I love the way you take that fool apart!  :)

  •  Well Good Luck With Your Show (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lucy2009, Puddytat, George Pirpiris

    though I don't see any chance of changing the media very soon.

    But we need every prog voice we can get so I'm glad to see you coming back on the air.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 09:44:12 AM PST

  •  Sigh. (10+ / 0-)

    Another hit and run self promoting diary from someone who's too good to hang out with us riff raff.


    "That the people have a right to bear arms for the defence of themselves and the State ..."- Vermont Constitution Chapter 1, Article 16

    by kestrel9000 on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 09:46:58 AM PST

  •  LOVE YOUR SHOW, CENK!!!!! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Puddytat, George Pirpiris

    It's the first one I watch, and frequently the only one I watch all the way through.  

    Keep up the great work and keeping it real.

    Personhood Advocates, Forced Birthers, and GOP policies, ensure that for many, quality of life begins at conception and ends at birth...

    by Lucy2009 on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 11:07:18 AM PST

  •  by standing outside hollering.. (0+ / 0-)

  •  Glad to see you back on the air (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    George Pirpiris, Lucy2009

    We must get Current on basic cable.  I have to pay extra to get it on an upper tier package that requires a cable box (so I can only see it in the living room).

    There already is class warfare in America. Unfortunately, the rich are winning.

    by Puddytat on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 11:53:24 AM PST

  •  The title promised "how" we can change the media. (0+ / 0-)

    The content was only a list of complaints and an advertisement.  Please tell us how.

  •  I love your work work! From the beginning when (0+ / 0-)

    MSNBC decided to let you go I stood on your side while other gave their silly opinions.  Keep up the great work!

    I let HP know they're site is a tabloid site every time they prove me right which is everyday with their lack of courage to tell the audience how wrong a politician who is "popular" is. Especially with their misleading headlines and JHS attention getter "Watch this!" with tasteless links to a topless Sofia Loren.

    How about providing a list of reputable news sites?

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