Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Hiding From The Truth

Even as two-thirds of the nation is once again buried in a winter horror story, the western third of the United States continues suffering the worst drought in 500 years. Whether it's the blowing snow or the unseasonable heat, we're reasonably certain that millions of Americans have called in "ill" to their workplaces today, so they can hide out at home.

Many of those Americans may just be practicing for their next job though - as either professional cowards for a university search committee, or as lying members of the incompetent national political media. It seems that both kinds of louses have been making appearances in the news lately, though Tuesday appeared to be the day the professional media hacks were scheduled to drop their lies, then run and hide.

From propaganda outlets like Fox and The Daily Caller to incompetent buffoons like Luke Russert and Chuck Todd on the left, much of the political media yesterday exposed just how amateurish they really can be. Effectively, those hacks took Twitter-sized glances at the CBO's 175-page, detailed budget outlook for the next decade. Then they pounded out a click-bait headline to entice the rubes online, dumped a few hundred barely researched words into an article, and left work early, to get to their next massage appointment on time.

Meanwhile, truly competent journalists from Josh Barro on the right to Greg Sargent on the left, along with a host of talented other journalists, made the facts of the CBO's report quite clear. Yes, thanks to Obamacare, the government could earn billions from the program right-wing media is calling the "Obamacare bailout program." No, Obamacare is not a job killer - and in fact, the law's discouragement of people from working crappy jobs just for health insurance is a positive feature, not a bug.

Maybe it would have been better for the media hacks if they'd just stayed hidden, like their allies in ignorance, those individuals advocating for secret search committees for university presidents.

In our home state of Nebraska, just such a search is about to take place, to find the replacement for current University of Nebraska President J.B. Milliken. Milliken's leaving this summer to become the Chancellor of City University of New York, after ten years in his current position. That move comes at a time when the regents over the University of Nebraska are looking at budget cuts of $4.65 million dollars for the system's flagship Lincoln campus.

At the same time, Nebraska state Senator and former University of Nebraska administrator Galen Hadley has proposed a new bill in the state legislature that would keep any leadership picks for Nebraska's university system a secret, until the individual was already hired. Because, of course, why should the taxpayers of a state have any kind of say in the people who will be spending millions of their tax dollars on their own state secondary educational institutions?

Officials in Nebraska aren't the only ones to be trying this kind of secret chicanery. Officials for the state university systems of both Michigan and Louisiana have also recently tried to conduct what should be very public business behind closed doors.

What both the incompetent media hacks and the gutless university cowards have in common is not just a distain for the truth. They also share a distain for all those they don't believe belong inside their inner circle, like members of the aristocracy, looking down on those they consider peons.

What the hacks and cowards seem to have forgotten is that Americans today no longer live in an age of aristocracy. Maybe the media and university folks have just lost their heads, temporarily. We suggest they get back to work and come into the light if they'd like to prove their heads are screwed on straight.