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Sunday, August 26, 2007

Of U.S. Network Anchormen and Squid

CV: by John Kusumi August 26, 2007 01:56 PM EST

"America's network anchormen are squid, who can't pronounce 'Falun Gong'." Need I say more? Keen observers will have the background knowledge to agree with me, that U.S. network anchormen "resemble that remark." In addition to resembling that remark, they may also resent that remark. Hence I must explain it for those who need introduction to its background, and -- for network anchormen who become defensive or hacked off about it -- I must sound apologetic or soften the blow.

Really, I am the last one whom U.S. journalists should turn to for sympathy. I am the author of a book manuscript -- 'Genocidal Correctness' -- that when published will review the approach of U.S. journalists during a very dark time of U.S. history: that of political correctness, or PC-ness. It will in essence ream a new orifice for the U.S. journalism profession, along with the U.S. politics profession. At the same time that U.S. politics has become a sheer farce, I conclude that we in America have lost our news media -- to corruption.

A case study about the Chinese pro-democracy movement, U.S.-China policy, and the Falun Gong crackdown in China has become a vehicle with which to explore the decline of the U.S. politics and journalism professions. Besides the 'GC-ness' book, I have another project titled, "Nationhood, the DVD." Through exploring U.S. trade policy, I conclude that globalization is b.s., and that we in America have lost our nationhood. Does the word "America" still identify a group of people? Yes. However, the group is dysfunctional as a nation. America is challenged at its borders; at its all-but-forgotten economic boundaries; in its national security; and, by the appearance that America is too busy dismantling itself to defend its integrity as a nation and its respectability.

Did my study of Falun Gong teach me all of this? Not entirely -- two more good inputs are a study of trade deficits, and of the economic development of civilization. I am convinced that the input narratives, plus the analysis narratives, lead with intellectual rigor to the foregoing conclusion narratives. When I release "Genocidal Correctness, the book" and "Nationhood, the DVD," they will be solid, not sketchy. Someone such as Mr. Spock (the fictional half-Vulcan character on the original Star Trek TV series) will be able to kick the tires and to pronounce the reasoning to be logical.

On August 18, 2007, I took in the TV show, Fox News Watch. There, I learned that NBC's anchorman, Brian Williams, recently appeared on Sesame Street (a children's educational TV series). They played the clip, in which Mr. Williams was very concerned to identify squid for the watchful audience of children. I believe that he signed off by saying, "Good night and good squid." Hence, I learned that Brian Williams is able to pronounce the term "squid." I also learned that CNN's Anderson Cooper will follow down that trail, and will make his own appearance on Sesame Street in the near future.

Sesame Street is a place to get jazzed about things like "the number 9," "the letter M," and "squid." I wonder what term Anderson Cooper will pronounce? --Whatever term that is, I can predict that it won't be "Falun Gong." For those who need the backgrounder -- such as viewers of Brian Williams and Anderson Cooper -- let me say that Falun Gong is a spiritual group and practice that arose in China in 1992. It is a variant of traditional Chinese qi gong. Strictly translated, that means life force cultivation. Loosely translated, it means morning exercises. The exercise regimen is not far removed from Tai Chi, and just like Tai Chi, people used to do Falun Gong in the park every morning. In China, that's perfectly normal, and Falun Gong gained in popularity until about 100 million people were adherents. Then came the crackdown -- the persecution that Williams and Cooper won't tell you about.

Since 1999, the Chinese government has pursued a crackdown to eliminate this group. Within China, it is a genocidal rampage, and a holocaust of persecution that has been killing these people who became ensnared in the government's dragnet for Falun Gong practitioners. How deadly is this crackdown? --It is hard to fathom that this crackdown is larger than the one at Tiananmen Square in 1989. The China Support Network estimates that 3,001 people were killed in that earlier crackdown; the death toll in Falun Gong persecution is indeed larger, and continuing to rise.

Something is depraved about the craven indifference that U.S. networks have shown to this group (and, by extension, to the Chinese people and to Asians in general). Something is reprehensibly sociopathic about leaving a holocaust to be "business as usual." In U.S. newsrooms, they have done just that, and time and again, they have consciously chosen to bury the story of the Falun Gong. Is mine a strong term -- "reprehensibly sociopathic"? Yes, and I am coining another strong term -- "genocidally correct." The U.S. newsrooms have indeed been "GC," and through their omission they have arguably been tacit accessories to genocide.

Of course, opprobrium should also go to the U.S. Executive Branch, where they run a "GC" China policy that is akin to leaving the Jews in the gas chambers. I realize that what is at hand is not entirely the fault of America's network anchormen. They might feel better if they know that I have also referred to three recent U.S. Presidents as bent, craven, depraved, and as "wuss bunnies of moral cowardice." Beginning at the time of Tiananmen Square, they should have called evil by its name. After Tiananmen Square, China's bloodbath of human rights abuse did not stop -- it merely went indoors. That means the killing went "out of camera range." It has occurred in the prisons, in the labor camps, and in the Laogai system that is to China what the gulags were to Soviet Russia.

My point being that the killing did not stop, and China did not become better on human rights. America is a place where an outfit can be sorry and saddening, but then advertise itself as fair and balanced. American viewers of these "fair and balanced" networks might have the impression that China solved its human rights problem, because Jennings, Brokaw, and Rather stopped mentioning any Chinese human rights problem. Today, Williams and Cooper follow in the footsteps of Jennings, Brokaw, and Rather. I remain unaware of whether or not they are able to pronounce the term "Falun Gong," but I saw Brian Williams do a good job with the term "squid."

I could ask of these anchormen: Precisely what is "fair and balanced" about entirely omitting the other narrative about China? Perhaps some media moguls like Rupert Murdoch decreed that "China's sh*t doesn't smell, and keep with that narrative." However, that is so divorced from reality that it makes a network sorry and saddening as they deliver pretend and make-believe news -- with a sanitized (read fake) view of China. Heck, if anchormen are now going over to Sesame Street, I think they should stay there. Somehow, I relish the thought of anchormen, popping their heads out of trash cans. If they don't live in a trash can, they've missed their calling!

Before we lose all sense of perspective, let me say that my criticism of network managing editors is incidental to my criticism of the Chinese Communist regime, and to my advocacy on behalf of the Chinese democracy movement. (Chinese dissidents still exist -- now with more strength than in the 1990s -- and they too were "cut out" by Jennings, Brokaw, and Rather.) I would value it if America's network anchormen would put the lie to my article's opening. They could apply this occasion to prove me wrong -- or, I could simply be "right again, as usual."

I know that the anchormen can pronounce these terms: Chandra Levy, Jennifer Wilbanks, Natalee Holloway, Anna Nicole Smith, Paris Hilton. In each case, they have changed the format of their networks and gone "wall to wall" with coverage of those young women. The summer of Chandra Levy was actually a summer of protest against globalization. But the anchormen didn't tell you that, and neither did they tell you that the Falun Gong death toll was going up.

I am still making up my mind as to how I will conclude my book, "Genocidal Correctness." It may in fact be my conclusion that I call upon ABC, CBS, and NBC to shut their news divisions. I haven't quite decided yet. For now, I will simply speak their language and say: Good night, and good squid.

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