The first statutory duty of straight speak for politicians and officials shall apply also to the media.

With photography and news stories, it's hard not to view what one is seeing - as reality. And yet these stories and images are mostly taken out of context, and elements are suppressed and magnified, and if reality remains in the final image - it is distorted. Less of an issue when multiple perspectives colour in the true reality - but seriously problematic when interests are manipulating these distortions and their audiences for nefarious purposes.

Why and how does our view of reality get distorted through our media? Who benefits from all this? In this episode we pick over the presence and absence of major issues, who owns the media in the UK; the role of the press and how it might be fixed.

Talking points:

The main lies - our environmental predicament

News as entertainment

Truth and "balance"

The Fourth Estate myth

News ownership and political power

The friend-enemy distinction

Diversity of media, ownership and corporate governance

Constitutional court as arbiter

Noble role of journalism

Citizen scrutiny in East Lancing, Michigen


Many books on the news media as political institutions(article)

Citizen scrutiny in East Lancing (article):

“Seaspiracy” - documentary on confusion and malice in global fishing (Netflix, 1 hr)

Former US intelligence director backs Turnbull and Rudd’s call for Murdoch media inquiry (Guardian)

Who owns the British media? (Wikipedia):

Book recommendation:

Re psychology, and us all wanting to believe something other than what is, including the politicians stuck in a dysfunctional system:

Jackson, Jodie. 2019. You Are What You Read. London: Unbound.

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