Monthly Archives: December 2012

Sunday comics reflect mass media’s desire to commercialize Christmas

On the Sunday before Christmas (or the Sunday after, when the celebration of the birth of Christ comes on Saturday) the color comic section is always full of the holiday. For example, today the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette offers 24 comics in

If violent movies and games are the cause for gun deaths, why are there so few in other advanced countries?

In his press conference on the Sandy Hook elementary school slaughter of the innocents today, Wayne LaPierre, the National Rifle Association’s (NRA) executive vice president, gave new meaning to the term American exceptionalism, the theory that there is something inherently

None of the four arguments against gun control make any sense when you analyze them

Through the years, I have read and heard four basic arguments by those who oppose gun control. Those who favor making it easier for people to buy and carry guns repeat these arguments with an almost religious fever, as if

Now’s the time for a rapid fire assault on gun manufacturers and elected officials

Now is the time to put the pressure on elected officials, gun manufacturers and the National Rifle Association (NRA) to strengthen gun control laws.  What I’m talking about is a rapid fire assault of letters, emails and tweets. Let’s prove

Instead of trying to stop voters from voting, states should stop semi-automatics

To think that the killing of 32 college students at Virginia Tech in 2007 once marked for many the epitome of the unspeakably horrific. Now we see even worse—the mass murder of 20 children aged 5-10 and seven of their

George Will plays the intellectual but tells the “big lie”

George Will told “The Big Lie” in his column this week, which I read in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review as “Off the cliff of credibility.” Long-time followers of the pseudo intellectual Will know he is capable of telling a whopper.  His

The right wing persists in using failed slogans and attitudes

It’s amazing that the right-wing ideologues in the news media continue to use failed slogans and continue to take repudiated positions. It’s as if there has been a message retrenchment to the basics of Romneyism among media stalwarts. I didn’t

Universities should increase merit scholarships, but end athletic ones, plus stop giving breaks to legacies

One of the minor threads in the vast patchwork quilt called anti-intellectualism in the mass media is the assault on merit scholarships for college students.  For example, the New York Times used today’s report on the effort of the University

Why is all the talk about cutting payments to the poor and elderly? How about cutting defense?

So far, the mainstream news media and the Conservative propaganda machine both agree that the payments to the poor and elderly should be the focus of public discussions of a deal to cut government spending to go along with the

Falling birth rate is not a problem if we embrace immigration and income redistribution

The recent study by the Pew Research Center that found the U.S. birthrate is falling has transformed a lot of economists and economic writers into Chicken Littles, running around the barnyard waving their wings furiously and shouting that “the sky