Right to Know My Ass  

rm_Ptalk1155 34M
3428 posts
11/28/2005 9:24 pm

Last Read:
3/5/2006 9:27 pm

Right to Know My Ass

I heard a phrase yesterday that, when uttered, makes me want to fling things in random directions. Somebody on a news channel said, "the public has a right to know."
I. Hate. That. Phrase.

It is the most bullshit, non-existent nonsense to ever get its way interpreted out of the Constitution. It's not in there! Anywhere! It's not even implied!

Explain to me where in here it says "the public has a right to know":

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

You know what that amendment says? It says we have the right to say what we want, print what we want, and believe as we want without interference from the government. It also means in the event the government becomes a flaming pile of dog shit (like it is now...), we can tear the Constitution into little shreds, light it on fire, and dance around it naked and the government can't do anything about it.

It does not say that the press can camp outside places waiting to interview people. It does not say that they can stalk public figures and plaster their personal lives all over the news. It does not even mandate that the government tell us what is going on, nevermind some redneck in a podunk town who happened to get his 15 minutes.

Why do people even want to know? Why do they read that nonsense? Who the hell cares who Angelina Jolie is banging? Do I want to see Paris Hilton having sex? Is Michael Jackson's affinity for little boys news? (Does it really surprise anyone??) Do I care what some suddenly famous person's cousin's mother's best-friend's son's wife's sister's dog's puppy pissed on last week?

And what about the extrapolations? If I'm that suddenly famous person because I'm running for office, and that puppy takes a leak on the baby Jesus in some manger scene, how does this make me anti-Christian? Doesn't this kind of thing qualify as libel or slander?

Is anyone else fed up with the media in this country? I mean, they literally can stalk people under the guise of "the public has a right to know." I can get a restraining order against someone following me around, so long as they don't have a press badge, then I just have to put up with it. Hell, in Texas I could shoot a guy hanging outside my house with a camera if he didn't have a press badge.

The public has no right to know. It's none of the public's business, and the public can go find something to do with themselves so that they're not so bored as they'd want to do know what time of the day I eat lunch (usually about 4:30).

Also, I love watching the press people ask a political person (especially the President) the same god damned question over and over again in sequence. I remember the one that got my goat the most. When the shuttle broke up on re-entry, I'm sitting there, watching the briefing, and I heard 4 people in row ask basically the same question, which was "do you know what caused this?" They would just frame it differently, as if somehow "we don't know" means "suggest a possibility for us to confirm or deny." The guys giving the briefing knew the astronauts personally, and had to get up, within 24 hours, and have the press badger them with the same question over and over again for an hour.

Do they not understand that people (especially politicians) are prepped for these questions, and if they refuse to answer, asking them 15 times in a row is not going to get the answer they're looking for? Hell, half the time they've already answered the question in the briefing. Behind on all the clever wording, the press conference is really just this:
"Really really?"
"Are you sure?"
"I said I was."
"You're not kidding then?"
"Oh. So..you're sure then?"
"YES. I'm sure."
"Oh. So, how do you feel?"

That's always the kicker. "How do you feel?" Isn't that the best?
"Your house was just destroyed by a hurricane. All your personal belongings washed away by a flood and your house is submerged in liquid shit. How do you feel?"
I'd love to have seen someone go, "I feel great! My wife just filed for divorce and was going to get everything! You want my house now slut? You can have it! It's under 10 feet of water! Bwahahahah!"

Oh wouldn't that be great. This is why when I run for President nobody will vote for me. The first person to ask me a question that I already answered (either in the briefing or from another reporter) is going to be picked up by the Secret Service and literally thrown out of the building. The second person will be beaten with their chair. You don't want to know what happens to the third person. I'll even distribute a memo to the press core before the briefing to let them know of this policy, which they will no doubt violate by asking me about the policy.

Anyway, on a completely unrelated topic, if you've never seen The Ref starring Denis Leary, Kevin Spacey, and Judy Davis, make sure you catch it this year. It is by far the most fun holiday movie, ever. It's been on AMC twice tonight, and will probably be on again a number of times before X-mas. (We'll get to a rant on the PCness of 'Merry Christmas' a bit later.)

tillerbabe 55F

11/29/2005 3:51 am

I don't care about the "celebrities"....but I do care about the assholes in power...and I do indeed have a "right to know"

rm_Ptalk1155 34M
3450 posts
11/29/2005 7:46 am

wet: I'll let you know next time we're doing it.

Tiller: In the case of the assholes in power, I would consent to not so much a "right to know" but a "right to be informed". Neither are in the Constitution however, which is what the press always claims. But, either way, does that give the press the right to swarm around them and follow them from point A to point B asking questions and snapping photographs everywhere they go? Does that give the press the right to dig out every indiscretion, every mistake they ever made and splatter it all over the TV, no matter how irrelevant? Does it give them the right to camp outside their houses? Where do we draw the line?

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