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Political Gateway - November 3rd, 2010
By Bob Hoffman
The media in the US are supposed to be our watchdogs. Our investigators. They are supposed to be for us, the people.
But do they do their duty?
Below are just 5 of the many things the media never covered in the election. They never cornered a candidate on any of them. The media brought into the light what the major political parties wanted. Many candidates refused to do any interviews with unfriendly media...on both sides.
1) Human Trafficking – Also known as slavery. From 14,000 to 25,000 human beings per year are brought into America as Slaves. This number may seem familiar to historians. During the height of slavery in the 1840s, the average number of slaves brought from Africa was 20,000 a year.
Media should ask - All of your candidates say America is the strongest best country in the world. How do you compare this with the numbers of slaves brought into the US every year? Why have you said nothing about it during your entire campaign or terms in office?
What they did ask? - Nothing. I remember not one question to a single candidate. Not one commentary. Not one pundit for the parties whether Fox News or MsNBC.
2) America at War – Iraq has around 47,000 American troops, Afghanistan almost 100,000. Afghan is in war mode, Iraq is still in civil disrupt mode. From 66,000 to 150,000 civilians have been killed in both countries (estimates vary). Our troops have been in a war zone for some 7 years with barely a break. Iran is being threatened, and threatening war. Pakistan is chock full of Al-Qaida.
Media should ask - What are you going to do about getting our troops home? Iraq? Iran? Pakistan? Afghanistan? Anything to do with anything war related? This even works on the local level for questioning relating to returning vets, disabled vets, and the dilemmas a vet's family is going through (foreclosure, loss of income, bills, love).
What did they ask? - A few questions were asked of incumbent Senators but only to gloss over some numbers. I found no hard questions. It was not an item for any news pundit, interview, or debate that I heard.
3) Oil & Gas Companies and Pollution – BP's Gulf oil spill is just one of many problems here in the US and all over the world. Ecuador, Alaska, Nigeria, the Gulf of Mexico, and it goes on. It has been reported that over 900 oil spills a year happen in Texas. Hydraulic Fracture mining is poisoning vast amounts of our water supply in America. In Nigeria and Ecuador they are responsible for mass deaths and support genocidal dictators.
Media should ask? - What are you doing in your district to protect the water supply? To protect residents from the toxins due to spills? How do you feel about what the oil companies are doing around the world? What about spills in the ocean and lakes? And about 1 million other questions for just about every candidate for office.
What did they ask? - Nothing. Not an issue for any candidate. Not a question for any media personality. Complete media fail here.
4) Real Estate – With obvious fraud throughout the entire land boom, bank fraud, foreclosure fraud, squatting, law breaking regarding foreclosures, some 20 million homes heading towards or in foreclosure, I think this a hot topic. There are 55 million mortgaged homes. An unknown amount, estimated 10 million to 20 million will be foreclosed the next few years. This does not touch upon the commercial real estate bust in effect right now.
Media should ask? - What are you going to do about lowering the county property appraisal prices of homes as they are still based on boom prices? What are you doing to protect homeowners and renters from illegal foreclosures and foreclosures of the wrong properties? What are you doing to help complexes like condominiums that are in duress due to so many in foreclosure? It has been 5 years since the bust started in Oct of 2005, what have you been doing about the entire issue for 5 years? Anything?
What did they ask? - Nothing. Many candidates complained about bailouts to banks, it was mostly rhetoric with no discussion. The media does keep bringing 'experts' who tell you 'now is the time to buy a home.' This is not a repeat from 2002 to 2009.
5) Legislation – Although there is much angst about healthcare and a few other bills, 1000s of pieces of legislation has been passed. You do not know about them, no one mentions, much less analyzes them.
Media should ask? - They should ask candidates about legislation they passed or voted on other than healthcare or bailouts. They should analyze some real dubious legislation from local to federal level. Each election a few bills are talked about and the rest forgotten. Remember the Patriot Act battle. After the election the whole issue has gone away and never fought over again.
What did they ask? - They only asked about a few things the Dems and Reps wanted to talk about. Healthcare, Finreg, bailouts and and few other 'funny named' bills. Nothing else was brought up, discussed, or even mentioned. The last congress passed a ton of bills. The media ignored all but about 4.
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