Sunday, December 11, 2005

Moral Authorities
Edward R. Murrow . . . Gene McCarthy . . . Walter Cronkite . . . John Murtha? At Foreign Policy in Focus, Daniel Smith examines the reasons why and how support for McCarthyism, Vietnam, and Iraq all reached a critical point and began to decline. In the case of the McCarthy Red scare and Vietnam, it was the opinion of trusted media figures who caused the American public to say, "Hey, wait a minute. . . " In the case of Iraq, at a time when no such trusted media figures exist, it may be that an ex-military man and hawk with unquestionable moral authority (Repug swift-boating attempts aside) shakes the media out of its enabler's role, and into the Murrow/Cronkite role it honors only in the breach.

(It's fitting that Smith mentions the influence on Vietnam of McCarthy, the Minnesota senator and 1968 presidential candidate, who died yesterday. I've mentioned it before: When I was eight, and watching the Democratic convention from Chicago on TV, I remember telling my parents that I was for McCarthy. Out of the mouths of babes . . . .)

Quote of the Day: Over at the News Blog, Steve Gilliard suggests yet another point that the wingnut warriors saving Christmas have missed:
What the wingnuts don't get is that the secularization of Christmas is the triumph of Christian values, even if megachurch owners want to shut their doors on Christmas Sunday. Christmas has become such a part of American life that even non-christians respect it and in many cases practice some of its rituals.
For example, atheists such as myself--who will be helping The Mrs. drag out her collection of nativity scenes and decorate the Christmas tree later today.

At the Hits Just Keep On Comin' this weekend: For Radio Geeks and Sittin' When the Evening Comes.

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