08 December 2010

What a Fool Believes

Julian Assange is not the story. Neither is the honey trap, unless of course it is. Either the guy has a terrific PR agent, or someone else is unwittingly doing the work of promoting Wikileaks for him by incongruously calling attention to it by promoting a Swedish sex scandal. We all know that in this country it's not the steak that generates eyeballs, but the sizzle. This story has all that and more. But all this reportage of gossip and cyberwar is taking eyes and ears away from the substance of what is being released.

This is the Wikileaks story:
"The Nuremberg trials established the principle that political and military leaders would be held accountable for waging wars of aggression. Now however, we have a situation where invasions of other countries on manifestly false and manufactured premises in breach of international law, suspension of habeas corpus, unlawful renditions and detentions, torture and other breaches of law and international conventions are carried out without those responsible being held accountable."
Don't let all that other stuff take your eye off the ball.

Neither is Liu Xiaobo the story, but the total effort of the Chinese to discredit the Nobel Prize and squelch Liu's criticism of its repressive regime is making him the story and, at the same time, reinforcing his point—probably everywhere but on the mainland.

Meanwhile, while the former U.S. Vice President is not the story, Dick Cheney's corruption, venality, and criminality should be and always should have been.

In politics, taxes are not the story. Getting them out of the way so the Senate can get on to the business of ratifying START is. "Duck and cover" anyone? Mitch McConnell trying to make himself the story by blocking this truly monumental action should be the story as well.

And, speaking of BIG things, I ask again: why isn't the UNFCCC a BIG story? It should be.

Lastly, John Lennon is not the story, nor is his death 30 years ago. I never knew him except via his celebrity. I was saddened that he got murdered by a lunatic. But that's the point: it's not about celebrity; the man wrote and sang some lovely songs that have had a remarkable shelf life for pop detritus.

1 comment:

Frances Madeson said...

Keep your eye on the new CVSA rules for trucking hazmat expected to be issued tomorrow, Jim. Shrouded in secrecy, the truckers have not been consulted; should be a fascinating window into all matters economic, labor/worker health, environmental, etc. Not exactly a crystal ball, but something pert near.