Refusing To Take A Side Alienates Political Partisans-Podcast 623

A friend asked me the other day if I was trying to alienate my audience. The reason for the question? I refused to take sides during election 2016 and will not do the bidding of politicians, in Refusing To Take A Side Alienates Political Partisans-Podcast 623.

On The Road

Last year The Bob Davis Podcasts went on the road to cover the primary campaigns. I traveled thousands of miles back and forth across the United States. When you roll on the backroads you see a lot and you learn a lot. Once you do that, you never view politics in the same way.

Manipulation

We’re being manipulated. Constantly. Republican and Democrat. Did a podcast about that. Detailed how we get our news from social media. Explained how to tell if a story lives up to journalistic standards. Asserted the idea that bad information leads to bad decisions. Apparently asserting ideas like this can put people on the defensive.

If You Want To Know The Truth

To know the truth, don’t take a side. It seems like everyone in media these days is taking a side. Defending a position. Making an argument. Demanding they be followed. Most information defends a point of view. This is the essence of our national manipulation. People say, “I don’t have time to sort it all out”. That is why I am doing these podcasts.

Shooting The Messenger

There are many assertions in modern news coverage these days. Most of these assertions are little more than opinion. This doesn’t mean the facts might one day support one view or another. Sadly the first reaction is defensive when facts don’t support conspiracy theory, commentary, personality endorsements, wishful thinking or the need to feel secure about a decision.

My Style of Communication

I am passionate. Direct. Intense. When I direct that passion and intensity toward something important to a specific listener it can be disconcerting. The value is it is researched, honest and authentic. Not filled with small talk and an effort to ingratiate myself with people so I can finesse a politicians message. This style of communication has certainly caused me trouble, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

History and Peeking Ahead

In Refusing To Take A Side Alienates Political Partisans-Podcast 623, I take a look at talk radio and media history, and discuss aging and changing perceptions, personal growth. Also take a look ahead to plans for covering the next election cycles. Hopefully I’ll continue to ruffle some feathers and get some discussion and thinking going.

Refusing To Take A Side Alienates Political Partisans-Podcast 623

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Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621

Social Media Rules

More of us get our news from social media these days. Problem is most of the ‘news’ on social media doesn’t adhere to standards. Might feel better informed, but it’s hard to tell the difference between writing to a standard and propaganda. In Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621.

Internet Never Lies

People are in the habit of posting, sharing, liking and commenting on stories that support their point of view. People apparently believe anything published on the Internet that looks credible and comes from a site they visit often. We are floating on a sea of bad information.

Garbage In Garbage Out

News stories not written to standard assert things that turn out to be false. What’s worse, this kind of information poisons the discourse. Thoughts, insights and ideas based on bad information form into concrete assumptions and conclusions. Those conclusions drive people’s ideas about the world.

Propaganda and Manipulation

In Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621 I’ll provide some examples of story-lines that have not been proven. Most of the time these stories reinforce the right versus left thinking that ruins friendships and family ties. It’s what makes social media so angry and vitriolic.

There are standards. When you know the standards you can determine whether a writer lives up to those standards. Without standards we’re susceptible to a steady stream of propaganda and manipulation. It’s up to us to learn the standards and choose what we post, share, like and comment on accordingly.

Context and Perspective

A steady diet of Social Media, 24 Hour Cable News and Talk Radio is like junk food for the mind. This ruins a person’s ability to discern whether assertions are true or just opinion. When all we do is read stuff online, watch You Tube videos and listen to cable news and talk radio we lose the context of major stories. We don’t get the details to be able to master the issues. Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621  explains how to do that.

Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621

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Podcast 585-Goodbye 2016

Bob Davis Podcasts Radio Show Number 59.

In Podcast 585-Goodbye 2016 Guest Andrew Davis and I have a father and son discussion of some of the big takeaways from 2016 and a look ahead to 2017. This isn’t one of those big stories of the year countdowns that populate the media at the end of every year. Just some thoughts about the year from both of us. What we have seen and what we thought was significant.

Of course in the United States, the big story of the year was Election 2016. Father and son talk about the winners and losers this year and how to stay informed going into 2017. The biggest loser of 2016 was traditional broadcast and cable television news and what is generally referred to as the mainstream media. This year though, you could add broadcast talk radio to the list. The biggest offense for these outlets was the penchant for predicting the future, picking a winner and endorsing a candidate.

From the media perspective the biggest winner was social media and You Tube. According to a recent study by Pew, more people got their news from social media and You Tube than ever before. This is a tectonic shift away from broadcast radio news and news delivered over traditional sources like broadcast television and cable television. This shift has provoked efforts to control what news and links people see and hear on social media sources.

In Podcast 585-Goodbye 2016, the biggest surprise in 2016, for traditional media and politics in 2016 was Trump’s Electoral Victory. For political elites inside the beltway and those who believed what old line traditional media told them, the emergence of Donald J. Trump in the primaries, his nomination as the Republican presidential candidate and his electoral victory was a shock. The biggest factor in politics in 2016 were the misconceptions fostered by terrible reporting and analysis.

Late in the election season the Clinton campaign and the White House introduced the idea that the Russians somehow ‘hacked’ the US election. While a convenient explanation for bereft democrats, even at this late date proof of a Russian Interference is lacking. Moreover, proof the alleged Russian intervention resulted in actually effecting the outcome of the election is even more elusive. Father and son disagree on this topic. This disagreement that carried over from the radio show to intense discussions with friends well into the evening.

With change back on the front burner in 2017 our discussion turns to how to get good information. There will be a need to evaluate the performance of the Trump administration and arguments against its initiatives. With so called fake news, opinion journalism rather than good investigative journalism, having good sources is more important that ever.

Once you have goos sources, you also need context. Good sources include source materials such as reports, think tank studies, documents, and live video. Context comes from reading history, source documents, non fiction books on various topics and your interests. Both of us caution against pop culture books which are nothing more than the same type of rehashing and alarmist coverage you see in social media, cable news and talk radio. They are designed to persuade, rather than inform. Certainly one can say think tanks have biases, which are usually fairly obvious, but reliance on source material from different parts of the spectrum and academic interests gives you the background and context to understand the biases without being manipulated.

Finally, the big issues in 2017 to watch will be the Trump Team’s transition, foreign policy issues including the South China Sea, ISIS, Europe, Russia and China, foreign trade, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Israel’s role in US foreign policy, United States Economic policy. Politically what the 115th congress does and how it does what it does will be significant stories in 2017. Supporters of the new President will be hard pressed almost from day one to defend his actions, and the opposition is treading through brand new territory. Both sides will need objective facts.

Finally, we have a little fun with the millennial obsession with smart phones and the hand wringing over ‘so many’ celebrity deaths in 2016 and thank the sponsored, supporters and listeners to the Bob Davis Podcasts throughout 2016. Happy New Year. See you in 2017.

 

Podcast 498

In Digital Media It’s All News. A tour through YouTube videos that predict the end of the world, a collision with a massive planet on a 3200 year elliptical orbit through our solar system, a massive conspiracy that includes mind controlling top entertainers like Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Coldplay and Kei$ha, FEMA camps and Walmart, and much much more. More of us get our news from videos on FaceBook, Twitter and YouTube on their smart phones everyday. As our devices get more and more powerful and sophisticated, digital media grows in reach and importance. Conspiracy theory videos some might think are ridiculous get millions of views. As we act more and more like tribes, we derive our information from sources our tribe approves of, sharing facts with only those in our ‘newsfeed’, or our list of friends, our tribes. In Digital Media It’s All News. With so many people watching it all, can our subconscious minds tell the difference between media designed to manipulate and media designed to give us facts? Do we have the discernment necessary to understand facts and context? What is the difference between the ‘real’ news and a conspiracy video on YouTube. Sometimes the videos on YouTube are done just as well. What is the difference between CNN and Fox and RT? Or InfoWars? Or a blogger you like. What prevents the kind of political action that solves problems. What happens when you go against your tribe? Are fear and ignorance driving the country, politically. You can’t stop it. No law passed will turn it off. We’re going to have to go through it, and somehow maybe learn the art of discernment. Meanwhile, gotta get back to the video about this planet coming it on the outer edge of our solar system. It’s gonna wreck everything. Sponsored by Hydrus Performance and Brush Studio in the West End, Saint Louis Park, Minnesota.

Podcast 446

Media Manipulation. Checking out the news cycle before and after the debates, and in the last few weeks it sure feels like we’re being manipulated. You can’t say anything about anyone these days without a stream of tweets and posts about what’s politically correct, or charges that ‘you’re in the tank’ for this or that candidate. New story lines about Donald Trump are actually laughable. After his comments on the San Bernardino Terror Attack (not the San Bernardino shooting, as Hillary Clinton likes to characterize a terror attack) Trump was a racist, a fascist and a demagogue. Now that a new poll has been released showing Trump breaking through forty percent, with his closest challengers as much as twenty points behind, the story line is its the fading middle class, or dumb white high school only ‘blue collar’ workers who support him. Or, that Ted Cruz is suddenly ‘the nominee’ because he beat Trump by one point in a poll in Iowa. Because people in Iowa don’t know that they’re being surveyed, interviewed and chronicled to death as they ‘pick the next president’. Meanwhile not a vote has been cast. Kudos to the Cruz campaign for working hard in Iowa but let’s not forget Iowa (which is somewhere down there between New York and Los Angeles, for those of you in the media) Republicans voted for Mike Huckabee in 2008 and Rick Santorum in 2012 and gave Michele Bachmann a big boost in the Straw Poll in 2012. Were any of those people the Republican nominee, or even president? At the same time, almost no ink has been devoted to Hillary Clinton’s compulsive lying or Bernie Sanders’ fairy tales about how to fix the economy, or solve all of America’s social problems with another government program. While the pundits and commentariat blabs on and on trying to predict the future, manufacturing is in a recession, government and corporate debt are at record levels, companies are merging to pump up their fourth quarter earnings, Chinese officials admit making up economic numbers, commodities are depressed  and the Fed is about to raise interest rates. Iran has pulled its troops out of Syria because they’re getting their ass kicked by ISIS, which by the way is expanding into Afghanistan where they will get an assist, no doubt, from the guy we had locked up in Gitmo, but let go to get a deserter back. Don’t worry about that right now though, Anderson Cooper is on talking about Carly Fiorina’s dress, Donald’s smack down of Jeb! and the Cruz Rubio rivalry. Hey did the Wild win? Maybe we’re better off with astrologers. As long as its Vedic astrology, right? Sponsored by Pride of Homes and Luke Team Real Estate and Hydrus Performance

Podcast 387

Noise and Unconscious Thought. What do you think about when you don’t know you’re thinking? Everyone has an unconscious stream of thought. It’s never ending. Most of the time we don’t even realize our brains are running, our minds are talking to us. Truth is, that unconscious stream of thoughts is often the well spring of good ideas and insight. It can be a gold mine of creativity, or a window into a person’s deepest motivations. Yet, everywhere we go these days is a video monitor, music playing, or a TV hooked up to one of the twenty four hour news channels. With all that ‘content’ being delivered everywhere, we don’t get a chance to experience silence long enough to actually experience our thoughts moment to moment. One could ask, ‘Do you ever listen to your thoughts’? Thing is, its near impossible for people to hear themselves think, because whether you’re putting gas in your car, going into a coffee store or restaurant, sitting at a bar, even doing your laundry at a laundromat, ‘content’ is always there. What they don’t tell you is, all that content is designed to use your emotion to persuade, or to hook into emotions to cause you to listen longer, watch longer and remember. With celebrities, politicians, even terrorists playing into the media for attention and persuasion, our thought streams are manipulated, and we don’t even know it. So for this Independence Day weekend in the United States, hopefully people can get a little slice of silence long enough to hear themselves think. What will you think about? Sponsored by X Government Cars