Radio transmission towers run the gamut from majestic to sinister to plug ugly. This one emits so much energy, if you live near it, you can’t turn your lights or your washing machine off even if they’re unplugged.
The Voice of America is this country’s government owned and run news channel. Its website is easy to find and easy to read. It’s radio waves are hard to pick up in this country because they’re on the shortwave bands but you can Listen on line. In several languages.
The VOA is not a government public relations arm, it is a legitimate and respected news source. President trump is trying to change that. He wants it to be his personal Al Ahram, Al Jazzira, Radio Moscow or something Hugo Chavez dreamed up.
Here’s an average headline from the VOA homepage: “Truckers Hit Road Bumps During Pandemic.”
Here’s how trump’s VOA would write it: “Road Conditions Improving, trump says.” Somewhere in the first couple of paragraphs, you’d read “President Donald J. trump told a meeting of Republican members of the House ‘we’re making great progress. Great progress in opening up some of those blue state roads that were screwed up by Obama loyalists.’”
Here’s another from the VOA:
WHO says Coronavirus May Be Permanent.
The trump version: “Wuhan Health Organization says virus may be permanent; trump says we’re taming it. We’ll get rid of it entirely by election day.” Somewhere in the story would be “Those yodelers in Geneva don’t know anything about America. Anything. Their brains have turned to Swiss Cheese.”
One more from the VOA: “Steps to Open Economy Vary by Country.”
trump version: “USA Leads the World in Restarting the Economy.” Don’t believe the lying Democrats when they say we’re behind Germany, the Czech Republic and Uganda.”
One of the steps in building a dictatorship is seizing control of the major media outlets. And where to start? Well, if you already own the VOA, move your pawn into the Executive Suite and up his rank to Rook, but not all the way up to Queen.
The Voice of America has almost 30 powerful transmission sites broadcasting in 27 languages. Do we want this in the hands of a politician? Any politician? Or political appointees, no matter how qualified.
NOTES FROM ALL OVER:
(NEW YORK) -- The best thing about reading Andy Borowitz in the New Yorker Magazine is that you don’t have to. The punchline always is in the title.
(WASHINGTON) -- The FBI is investigating US Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) seeking information on stock trades possibly based on insider information. Burr has stepped down as chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee. The FBI wants to know if he sold stocks before they tanked when the rest of the country learned of the Coronavirus.
I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
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© WJR 2020