commentary: Without a Clue
The Public is Pretty Much at the Media's Mercy
John W. Ritenbaugh
Given 07-Jul-12; 14 minutes
The other day, Evelyn had quite a long phone conversation with her sister, who is 3½ years older. She's a very sweet lady and also fairly religious. She regularly attends an Evangelical-type Protestant church. They eventually began conversing about events that are in the news—things like the unusually hot weather we are having, the immoral state of the American public, and then came the political campaign. I think that her sister would most likely vote Republican, more out of a sense of force of habit than anything else. But there is in her, without doubt, some level of interest in politics, enough so that for many years, she has given her time on Election Day to work at the local voting place, seeing that things there are going smoothly.
This year, she will not work because of an effect of old age that has nothing to do with her brain. However, Evelyn discovered that her brain is virtually vacant—ignorant—of things pertaining to Barack Obama, except what she hears on the evening news: CBS, NBC and ABC. She has no involvement with computers or the Internet. One result is that she knows nothing about the continuous stream of lying by President Obama regarding his birth and background, his very deep involvement in socialist causes, his membership in the anti-Semitic so-called 'Christian' church of the false prophet [Jeremiah] Wright.
She apparently knows nothing of the missing college and university records, or his apparently illegal Social Security number. She has only at low level knowledge of the tremendously huge deficits he's accumulated, or of how bad unemployment is, and how he is lying about those figures virtually every week. She knows nothing of his sociopathic, narcissistic personality that blames everybody else for everything that goes wrong and absolves himself from any blame whatever. He is almost totally focused on himself. I could go much further, but I think that you get the point.
I believe that she is pretty close to the average American citizen, and most especially when she is compared to the youngest voters and the very elderly. In her case, I think that she would like to know more, but in her circumstance she has very little chance of getting any of it. Now, why? Because she only gets her information about what is going on in the world from the major newspapers and television stations.
You ought to know the answer to this question, but I will ask it anyway: Do you know what the word "moral" means? It's really simple. It means, "conforming to standards of what is right or just in behavior." What is very important, though, is who sets the standards of what is moral in this culture of ours. Sixty to seventy years ago, it was clearly the churches, and they in turn, got their standards from God's Word. Today, moral standards are largely set and distributed from secular universities, the public school system, motion picture entertainment, television, and perhaps the most pervasive of all (because of the people involved in it), is television and its newscasters. And the reason why they have so much influence is because they are heard almost every day by somebody, somewhere in the United States.
Here is a little bit of history that you may not know. In 1917, J. P. Morgan, whose name you may recall—he was a steelmaker, very wealthy, a banker—gathered 12 men together, all connected with newspapers and magazine publishing business, and he asked them to list the most influential newspapers in America. They presented him with a list of 25 names. He then proceeded to buy those newspapers, one by one. He then hired editors to set and control the newspapers' policies. His purpose was to establish each newspaper so that the public received information from it that was in conformity with J. P. Morgan policy. This so angered one of the congressmen that he had it entered into the Congressional Record—this was in 1917—what J. P. Morgan was doing so that the people in Congress would be warned. He had enough vision to see where this was headed.
J. P. Morgan has been dead for a long time, and I am pretty sure that his newspapers slipped into the ownership of others. But today, virtually every large media organization in the United States of America, plus the motion picture industry, plus music companies—all of them communicating messages involving news and conduct—is owned by only five corporations. You could probably name them once you begin thinking about it. You see the names every day. Not one of them is even close to godly standards. They are driven by the profit motive. All news is shaped to conform to their editorial design.
Richard Salant, the former president of CBS, publicly stated, "We do not give the public what they want, but what we decide the public gets." The famous anchor, Walter Cronkite, also stated that all news anchors have a liberal bent.
Not many years ago, 240 news anchors were polled regarding what they believe concerning moral issues. The results are sobering. 47% believe that adultery is okay, even though to this very day in 29 states it is still on the books as being illegal and worthy of prosecution. But of course, the laws are no longer enforced in any state because the whole culture virtually has sunk to that level. As bad as the adultery percentage is, an astounding 76% believe that there is nothing wrong with homosexuality, and an incredible—at least to me—90% believe there is nothing wrong with abortion.
Of that group of 240, 86% reported that they seldom went to church. Where, then, do their standards come from? What is the source of their moral values? Well, I think the answer is obvious. It is either other man or themselves.
In 2002, 20,000 people assembled in Washington, D. C., to protest gay marriage. Are you aware that nobody has ever found a reference to gay marriage in the entire history of civilization? This is 6000 years. Homosexuality—of course. But gay marriage—never! Well, the day of that protest and the day following, neither CBS, ABC, or the Associated Press reported anything at all about the 20,000 people who were gathered in Washington, D. C. to protest. However, they did publicize with pictures and positive comments the 300 gay people who appeared to protest with banners against the protesters. They said without saying it: The gays were the good guys.
What I am getting at is that news reporting is clearly being manipulated because the media is on the same side and the same general level of selection of behavior values as those in governmental authority. In addition to that, the public is pretty much on the same level as well. It is so bad that blatant, persistent lying—which is immoral—is considered by government figures as minor and acceptable as long as the ones lying are on the same team.
Can you understand why, when God sent prophets to reveal truth about the people's attitudes and conduct, the Israelites almost invariably killed the prophets. This is the direction we are headed. The ones telling the truth get killed.
I believe that my sister-in-law is a typical example of the public. She would easily be considered as a good citizen, and even in the biblical sense, probably an upright person. But she will not hear the other side of the story from the normal media. Unless God chooses to make a change and the issue is is left totally in the voters hands, I perceive that so many people are blinded by the spoon fed news prejudices, there is only a slim chance that there will be any change.