Holding Court – Gospel Of The 1 Percent

Holding Court Headerby Benjamin T. Moore, Jr.

I Was Offended!

What follows is the account of an encounter I had the other day in our local Meijer grocery store. I see this more and more frequently these days. Some Apostle of the GOP, spreading the gospel of Fox News and the 1%, will begin loud talking someone. Most often this is a person whom they perceive to be uninformed or under informed and they promptly get busy planting the seeds of their delusion in what they perceive to be fertile ground.

I do try and mind my own business… However, when someone is playing to an audience and seeking converts… I don’t do “audience” well. I tend to talk back, object and ask questions. Hopefully you will enjoy the following exchange and perhaps join me in pushing back against these charlatans who seek to pull the wool over the eyes of people they believe are beneath them. Enjoy!

Holding Court – Gospel Of The 1 Percent

The other day I had to go down to our “City Hall” to pay our property taxes… I’ve had several bad experiences with their security check point – read: damn near had to strip – so, I figured I’d put on some sweat pants and a sweat shirt with nothing on me other than my wallet, keys, checkbook, a pen and my smart phone. All in all? I looked pretty grungy.

Weather report called for sub-arctic temps, so I figured while I was out I’d swing through Meijer’s and grab a few items so I wouldn’t have to go out again for a couple of days. Thus it was, with visions of a glowing fireplace in mind, I found myself on the dairy aisle heading towards the eggs.

Holding Court - Dairy Aisle My first intimation of an unusual exchange came when I heard this older white guy talking in what I call his “holding court voice.” I’m sure you’ve all heard and experienced this. When people talk way too loud for a conventional conversation such that people 20 or more feet away can hear clearly and follow along whether they’re interested or not. The second thing I noticed was… damn if they weren’t standing dab smack in front of the egg section!

Let me paint the picture for you. The older white gent was wearing some designer jeans, loafers and something like a members only jacket. He had silver hair, was about 6′ tall and exuded wealth and power. The poor employee he had “buttonholed” was maybe in his late 20’s, early 30’s. Rather scraggly faced. Ponytail, tall and lean. I’d seen him around numerous times. He was always pleasant but quiet and reserved.

My intentions were to grab my eggs and get the hell out of there… glowing fireplace, remember? What stopped me in my tracks was, I heard the younger employee defending himself by saying, “Meijer made quite a profit this year… to me that means they ought to be able to give us employees a raise.”

My eyes narrowed as the alarm bells begin to go off. This older fellow must have been pressing the employee quite a bit because this isn’t generally the topic of conversation that goes well… *on* company time and on company *property.* The older fellow – again in his “holding court voice” – proffered, “well, all these grocery stores are running quite a lean ship and there’s just not as much money as you think there is…” He rocked back on his heels smugly and gave a knowing smile.

Holding Court - Silver FoxI slowly turned, looked at him and said, “you seem to be as old if not a bit older than I? I’m sure you recall when we grew up, things really weren’t all that bad… back in the days when the CEOs of corporations didn’t make 700 times what their front line employees make? We did pretty well back then didn’t we? Just because something is a certain way, doesn’t mean it has to be, or should be that way…” Jamie Dimon, the CEO of Chase just got a $20 million bonus package… this same year Chase paid out over $29 Billion in fines… but the board still gave him a $20 million bonus package.

I noticed his spine stiffen a bit. Clearly he had foreseen things going a different way. He was game however and immediately argued that, “the federal government almost put a gun to J.P. Morgan Chase’s head and made them buy several banks which is how they incurred those fines.” At this point I tried to sort of clue him in that it is unwise to judge a book by its cover… namely me. I informed him that I knew all about it as my wife happened to be an executive vice president for the bank. I then pointed out that this did nothing to explain the investigation being carried out by the U.S. Attorney General’s office into criminal wrong doing at Chase.

At this point he became almost apoplectic! I had to step back a bit to keep from being sprayed as spittle formed at the corners of his mouth. “Eric Holder is a criminal he spat!” I did try to make allowances even though I felt myself begin to do a slow boil… nevertheless, I pushed the fury down, looked him directly in the eyes and said, “he’s the United States Attorney General and I choose to respect him as such.” A more prescient man would have detected the edge in my voice and noticed the fire that had begun to flicker in my eyes. Not so with this fellow…

“Well then he needs to start prosecuting criminals he bawled!” He had just crossed the Rubicon and there was no going back now. The game was afoot! Okay, I said. “Tell me which crimes he isn’t prosecuting.” “Well he can start with all those guns coming in from Mexico!” “Uh huh,” I said, “that’s ‘Fast and Furious’ and that was under George Bush.” “Next? Have you got anything else???” He turned beet red and began to sputter. No time like the present to start my evisceration of this fool. “Your problem” I said conversationally, “is you get all your news from Fox News. Studies have shown that people who don’t watch any news at all, actually know more about the news than people who watch Fox.”

At this point he literally began to shake, his fist clenched as he exclaimed, “I don’t watch Fox news… and I don’t watch CNN, ABC, CBS or NBC… furthermore, *watching any other station is useless!”* The more agitated he grew, the calmer I became. Lowering my voice a level I said, “so you’re a liar! You do get your news from Fox! You just admitted to it.” His mouth flew open and he began gulping air. Attempting to recover, he exclaimed, “no I don’t! I don’t watch any of the news channels!” He was shaking now… and I had him. Time to deliver the coup de grâce. “So where do you get your news?” I asked pleasantly. “Or do you just pull it out of your ass???”

I didn’t think it was possible for him to become any more red! He began to shake and then with the almost plaintive wail of a child, he said, “I get my news from sources…” “Which sources” I pressed. “Sources that *I* trust!” At this point I looked over at the employee, spread my arms, shrugged my shoulders and with a smile and a nod I said, “Fox!” I shook my head and calmly walked away, eggs in hand, to get the rest of my items.

A moment or two later the employee located me, walked up to me, shook my hand and said, “thank you so much. I really can’t debate these people while I’m working.” I smiled and said, “no worries, I had you covered.”

DOJ Media Probe – Why We Don’t Care.

DOJ Media Probe Headerby Benjamin T. Moore, Jr.

trea·son (noun)

1. Violation of allegiance toward one’s country or sovereign, especially the betrayal of one’s country by waging war against it or by consciously and purposely acting to aid its enemies.

DOJ Media Probe - Koch Brothers

Charles and David Koch

It is very disheartening to realize that effectively, there is very little difference between the Koch brothers and those who own and run our media outlets. In both cases you have extremely wealthy people who have agendas and the means to pursue those agendas in a manner that excludes competing viewpoints. Yes, everyone has a voice. However, when you’ve got wealth, you have a megaphone that allows you to shout down competing positions.

DOJ Media Probe - Cable News NetworksWe recently became aware that the Department of Justice obtained the phone records of reporters working for the Associated Press. If you had asked me to speculate on the odds of Fox News, Huffington Post and MSNBC all being in agreement on an issue, I’d of put those odds right about even with Hell freezing over. Imagine my surprise when I awoke one fine day to discover that all the News channels were in complete agreement on an issue.

DOJ Media Probe - Attorney General Eric Holder

Attorney General Eric Holder

Any issue that could make Fox News and MSNBC see eye to eye, simply demanded further investigation. Even more so as more and more media outlets began to pile on. As usual – for Fox – their target was Attorney General Eric Holder. I will admit, based on the reporting it was disturbing to think that the Federal Government would acquire the confidential work product of renowned news reporters… in secret!

Having been burned a time or two, I’ve learned to look prior to leaping based on some media outlet’s say so. What I discovered was shockingly simple. Contrary to the impressions being spread, there was good reason for what was done and it was in fact a matter of National Security.

There is a distinct difference between a “whistle blower” speaking in confidence to our “free press” and someone using the press to reveal “Top Secret” information. Information, that once revealed would weaken our nation, put at risk the lives of those who work with our assets on foreign soil and ultimately put at risk the lives of Americans right here at home.

DOJ Media Probe

DOJ Media Probe - Underwear Bomber

Underwear Bomber

Most of you will recall the “Underwear Bomber.” What most do not realize is how close he came to succeeding. Unlike the “Shoe Bomber” who paused to say his prayers first, allowing enough time for a vigilant Stewardess to “Cold Cock” him before he could put a match to the fuse of the bomb hidden in his shoes, the “Underwear Bomber” was successful in setting off his device. Fortunately for everyone on that plane, rather than detonate as planned, it simply burst into flame, burning severely some rather sensitive portions of his anatomy.

DOJ Media Probe - Anwar Al-AwlakiThe people we’re at war with, are not stupid. They analyse what went wrong, and seek to improve their devices for their next attempts. It turns out, we were fortunate enough to capture and get our hands on one of their new and improved devices. It was whisked to our labs over here for examination and analysis. The “intel” from that device would have given us a lot of information. How their bomb making techniques have improved. What chemicals they’re currently employing. How they’re triggering the new device and most importantly, whether or not our current security protocols and technology would be able to catch these new devices.

"DOJ Media Probe - FBI Crime Lab

FBI Crime Lab

That information is only good so long as “They” don’t know we’re on to them. Nobody with the clearances to even know we had one of their devices, nobody with the clearances to analyze their device, should be spilling the beans to ANYBODY, let alone a reporter(s) working for an international news agency.

When the DOJ read the AP article in March of 2012 outlining the operation, stating that our CIA had seized the device and that it was being examined and analysed by the FBI, as you might imagine, there was an immediate investigation launched behind the scenes. This was information that had to of come from an inside source.

DOJ Media Probe - Espionage

We’re talking about espionage.

When people make honest mistakes, they do not seek to cover their tracks. Clearly whomever leaked the information was not an amateur nor was his or her leaking of the information accidental. If it had been, they would have discovered the person responsible and dealt with them. The “DOJ Media Probe” is mute testimony to the serious nature of this situation. They had to approach it from the media end and work backwards. Now they’ve got a double headed situation. If they’d walked through the front door of the Associated Press and made their request. The reporter may have tipped off his or her source that they were on to him. This may have provided time for the destruction of evidence and possible escape. They needed to know whom was in contact with the Associated Press. Someone who would also have had access to, or the security clearance high enough to have access to sensitive information at that level.

Yes, the DOJ Media Probe truly is a matter of national security. This has nothing to do with “Whistle Blowers” or weakening the First Amendment protections of our “Free Press.” This truly is a matter of National Security. It is important to note, the DOJ actually showed an amazing amount of restraint. They could have easily seized AP offices around the country, put everyone out, padlocked the doors and then combed through all of their files at their leisure. Instead, they did not even record the contents of the conversations of the AP reporters, they simply made a log of whom they were talking to.

Media Reaction

This entire scenario has given us a wonderful insight into what is wrong with our “for profit” News outlets. At one time they taught in journalism classes, the goal of any news report is to answer four questions:

  1. Who?
  2. What?
  3. When?
  4. Where?

A Journalist adds one more question, “Why?” No opinions, just the facts as you know them to be. The Newspapers did add Opinionated Editorials which we abbreviate as “Op-Eds.” These were entertaining and provided food for thought, but we understood these were the opinions of the writer and not necessarily based in fact. We weighed them as such and there was no attempt to pawn these off as “News.” They even had their own section in the Newspapers.

DOJ Media Probe - Andy Rooney

The late, great Andy Rooney

Today we have opinion masquerading as news! Andy Rooney’s segment at the end of “60 Minutes” was an Op-Ed. He made no bones about it. Everyone understood that Andy was not reporting on the News. FOX News, MSNBC and CNN have more “Op-Ed” shows than they do actual News shows. When it comes to actual News, I’d give the edge to CNN. The other networks are basically all opinion unless there is an actual breaking story unfolding. Even then, most often they fill empty air with “talking heads” who proffer their opinions about what is unfolding. It’s all entertainment.

Proof There Is Really Little Difference Between The Networks

The DOJ Media Probe has certainly provided proof that there is really no difference between the major Cable News outlets and many of the Printed and Electronic Media outlets. If any of them had gone back to the fundamentals of News Reporting and Journalism, the whole DOJ Media Probe wouldn’t have been much more than a 5 minute piece. Who? What? When? Where? Why?

The true story had nothing to do with the DOJ Media Probe. The true story was whether or not one of their own was complicit in treason? Isn’t it interesting that they all seem to be ignoring this angle of the story? It is this very uniformity in their approach that gives cause for pause and raises one’s suspicions. When News Agencies who have a track record of disagreeing on almost every issue they focus on, suddenly line up and fall in step? That’s not just unusual, that’s like waking up tomorrow to discover that the Sun is now rising in the West and setting in the East. You might want to seriously examine, what happened over night while you were sleeping.

Mind Control And Media Manipulation

DOJ Media Probe - Mind ControlMost people never stop to realize that one of the most powerful tools of mind control and manipulation is the News Media! You turn on your television each evening and you’re not only being told what is important, but what you should think about it. The world is a big place. History is being made around the globe everyday. There simply is not enough time to cover everything. Thus, someone has to go through, pick, choose and aggregate what should or should not be covered. This is where the mischief begins.

No problem! We all agree this is necessary. However, have you ever wondered whom decides what is presented? What criteria do they use? Take the Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting for instance. Absolutely tragic. The liberal media – MSNBC in particular – have used this tragedy as an excuse to run anti-gun pieces night after night after night. Almost each show on MSNBC devotes some portion of its time to beating the drum for gun control. It’s no longer news. Anybody who was interested or not, now knows everything that happened surrounding the shooting. Well, the official story at least.

DOJ Media Probe - Mind Control RepetitionHow many children died? Around 20? Presumably, it is out of concern for the children that MSNBC, night after night, like a broken record on a record player you cannot unplug, gives all it’s viewers their daily overdose of anti-gun medicine. Clearly they’re no longer reporting the news. They’re not even engaging in legitimate “opinionated editorials.” What they’re endeavouring to do is manipulate society and cause it to move in the direction that they have chosen. Incessant repetition is one of the main tools of brain washing.

Why do I call this, “attempted societal manipulation?” If MSNBC or for that matter, any of the Cable News Outlets were really concerned about children, they’d be discussing the nearly 20,000 children that die every single day because of starvation or treatable disease. Every day, 1,000 times more children die than were murdered in Sandy Hook Elementary school. Yet, not a peep from the liberal media. By way of analogy, it’s like someone on the Titanic complaining about a leaky faucet in their Stateroom.

Either you care about children or you do not. MSNBC’s hypocrisy knows no bounds or, what they’re actually doing is using their platform to advance an agenda. In this, they’re no different than the Koch brothers or other monied interests on the “Right” who use their wealth to buy elections and purchase politicians. The end objective is exactly the same. Subvert democracy and shape society to their liking. Perhaps it is because the nearly 20,000 children who are dying are not white? Maybe it’s because they weren’t shot with a semi-automatic rifle? Maybe somehow they’re less dead because they weren’t shot?

Why We Don’t Care About The DOJ Media Probe

I am happy to report that as of today, the American people have not completely succumbed to the mind control methods being employed against them. Based on the polling, we get it! The American people know that one of the primary functions of government is to provide for the safety and welfare of the American Citizens. When a News Agency begins to publish top secret information that could ultimately cause the deaths of innocent American Citizens, we not only expect our government agencies to take action, we demand that they do.

DOJ Media Probe - Associated PressIf anything, the Justice Department under Attorney General Eric Holder, may have shown too much restraint. By giving a “heads up” to the terrorist, the Associated Press may have caused the bomb makers to refine their methods and technologies such that their next attempts will meet with success. The blood of all the innocent victims of the next attacks, will be laid at the doors of the Associated Press.