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Sunday, May 29, 2005


The Moyers Strikes Back

Bill Moyers, journalist, commentator and liberal, has been under fire from the Bush administration, at least according to Mr. Moyers. Make of that what you will, I have no interest in attacking the man's character. He's been doing what he does, and what the CO invited me here to do for as long as I have been alive. You have to respect the man's success and longevity if not his opinion. My interest is in the content of his response to these attacks he's described. Nothing more.

It's my opinion that those who can't look at themselves through the eyes of their opposition are doomed to ultimate failure, regardless of whatever short term success they may achieve. With that in mind I suggest you read Moyers's speech if you haven't. It can also be found here where I first encountered it.

Whatever else one may say about Moyers, he comes across as a reasonable man. If for no other reason, I find his descriptions plausible simply because of that. Nothing is threatening to either party as a well spoken and reasonable seeming opposition. It's hard to demonize or ostracize such a person because they are so damn reasonable. People want to believe such a speaker. Finding consensus with a person like that tends to validate the human need to seem a part of something, to be in some way important and above the masses. Moyers is certainly that.

I alluded to this post as "sympathy for the Opposition" and that is what it's about. Moyers starts off by building the background of his tale, and naturally that background is about him. He captures my attention as the kind of liberal I think the country needs. A man who is standing up not because it's the thing his crowd does, or because he's got a bone to pick. He stands up because his principle demand it of him. And those principle demand he not simply claim to be right, but BE RIGHT. He comes across as a man who questions his course, and the course of his political affiliation. In short, he comes across as a man who would question his own party were it controlling the government.

More over, his description of PBS is exactly what I think it should be. His description of PBS news is the model I want out of so many news organizations and don't get. So I'm sympathetic to what he has to say.

I never watched NOW, so I don't know if he's telling the truth. TV is my enemy. I simply have no respect for television news. I regret that in as much as it prevented me from seeking out NOW and find out for myself if it met the standard I believe the news should aspire to.

Moyers pulls no punches. He doesn't trust the administration, and he believes he has reason not to. I don't expect conservative to come away happy with what he has to say. I certainly didn't.

Yet he summed up my feelings nicely when he said "I've always thought the American eagle needed a left wing and a right wing. The right wing would see to it that economic interests had their legitimate concerns addressed. The left wing would see to it that ordinary people were included in the bargain. Both would keep the great bird on course. But with two right wings or two left wings, it's no longer an eagle and it's going to crash." Perhaps he describes the Left as too people centric, too saintly, but the core idea is there. We need dynamic tension in the country for a number of reasons, and it seems the Neo-Conservative agenda is stomp that out.

---No matter where you go, there you are.

Next Time: “Another Fine Mess”

Ah I may have forgotten to mention it to you, but people can post other stuff on the Spectrum. I don't recall, my mind was running at about 20% when i was inviting people... as evidenced by someone who decided not to play after one round...
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