to keep our elected officials honest and to keep our government from overreaching its constitutional boundaries. On November 4, 2008, a “free press” officially died in the United States… tyranny cannot be far behind.
I must say… In many ways, the founding fathers of this country were brilliant men… their creation of a constitution, and later amendments providing for a “bill of rights” was genius. Within the Bill of Rights is the first amendment which provides for freedom of speech among other significant rights given the citizenry. While I am not a scholar, nor have I studied these documents in depth, it strikes me that the founders understood the true meaning of “freedom of speech”. Freedom of speech provides for free expression of ideas by citizens including providing for a way of keeping our government from usurping power thereby suppressing its citizenry. I believe the founders knew that “power corrupts” and by having a free press and an unchallenged press, provided a restraint on government confiscation of rights and priviledges of its citizens. Many of the founders had experienced first hand the tyranny of the British Empire. And I believe the first amendment in part was crafted in such a way as to provide a throttle on government’s insatiable desire to control people. To me, the press and our citizens having the right to speak their minds is essential to a fully functioning democracy.
Fast forward to 2008… assume for the moment my basic thesis is that our free press is a fundemental building block of our form of self-government… if the press does not perform its important function of shining a light on government corruption, government ineptness and issues facing the nation, the nation loses a critical and essential tool to prevent government abuse and absolute control over its citizens inalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
This past election period, we saw the press in this nation lose all objectivity and ability to challenge candidates and government actions, ie bank bailout. Today, regrettably I feel the press is unable to objectively monitor the activities of our government. The press has lost its objectivity and worse yet has in some cases become willing accomplices in promoting a certain ideology and promoting certain politicians. My friends, the press in the United States is no longer able to objectively inform the public nor is able to shine the light of day on corruptions, ineptness, stupidity and usurpation of our god given rights. And I am afraid that Congress and the President will move to stymie those lone voices who speak out against our government… which our founders knew was a lynchpin in maintaining a fully functioning democracy. My friends, the day is coming where we as a people must ignore the opinion papers posing as newspapers, and seek out answer on our own. And we have to find a new medium to communicate to our nation the abuses and the corruption of our government. While I think the Internet gives all of us the opportunity to voice our opinions and to create a national dialogue, my fear is that Internet has become polluted with so much inaccurate information… in addition to providing a staggering and overwhelming amount of information.. the Internet is unlikely to be successful in providing a “check and balance” on politician’s power grab and our governments desire to confiscate our god given rights.
But for the record, the year 2008 is the year the free press died in the United States. Now it is time for citizen action in the form of boycots of those media sources who fail to honor their duty to this nation of informing us of information necessary to keep our democracy fully functioning.