Time For ‘Toons!

The time has come to share some of the political cartoons from the past week with you guys.  I must say that as much as we are bombarded with political drama, environmental crises, social disruption, it is a boon for the political cartoonists who NEVER have to go digging for a topic these days!  Oh, if only I had some artistic talent!  But alas … a five-year-old child can draw better than I can!  These ‘toons and artists show that we CAN find humour, even in the darkest of times.

We The People v Fox ‘News’ Corporation

During the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s, the New York Times published an ad for contributing donations to defend Martin Luther King, Jr., on perjury charges. The ad contained several minor factual inaccuracies.

The city Public Safety Commissioner, L.B. Sullivan, felt that the criticism of his subordinates reflected on him, even though he was not mentioned in the ad. Sullivan sent a written request to the Times to publicly retract the information, as required for a public figure to seek punitive damages in a libel action under Alabama law.

When the Times refused and claimed that they were puzzled by the request, Sullivan filed a libel action against the Times and a group of African American ministers mentioned in the ad. A jury in state court awarded him $500,000 in damages. The state supreme court affirmed, and the Times appealed.

When the case reached the U.S. Supreme Court, the Court ruled that when a statement concerns a public figure, the Court held, it is not enough to show that it is false for the press to be liable for libel. Instead, the target of the statement must show that it was made with knowledge of or reckless disregard for its falsity. Brennan used the term “actual malice” to summarize this standard.  This was a landmark case and decision that has probably saved this nation billions of dollars in lawsuits over mistakes made by the press.

Fast forward to 2021 through present and consider the information we recently learned that Fox ‘News’, with full knowledge that the 2020 election was a fair one and that President Biden was the legitimately elected president, perpetuated the Big Lie that the election had been “stolen” from one Donald Trump.  Not only did the reports like Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham know that they were telling lies, but the CEO of Fox Corporation, Rupert Murdoch, also knew that his employees were selling the public a grab-bag of very harmful lies!  And Murdoch allowed this to go on for two years.

Dominion Voting Systems, the company that manufactures the electronic voting machines used throughout the country, is suing Fox ‘News’ for libel, and it seems to me they have a pretty darn good case, based on what we have seen of the private communications among the Fox hosts.  However, I don’t think it should end there.  Certainly Dominion suffered harm from Fox’ lies, but so did the people of this country.

Fox ‘News’ is the most-watched cable ‘news’ channel in the nation.  Though I personally do not understand this, according to New York Times’ David Brooks, rural America sees Fox as their ‘community’, as the people who understand them and their problems.  Some, perhaps millions of people, never see any news outside of Fox’ control and may still not be aware that they were blatantly lied to for two years about the results of the 2020 election.  Those people are voting, based on what Fox tells them, against their own interest as well as against the interests of the nation.  They … and we … have been harmed by the lies that Fox hosts repeatedly told, lies that were believed and acted upon, by their viewers.

It seems to me that Dominion isn’t the only one who should be suing Fox, but that We the People have grounds for an enormous class action suit against the company.  Because of their lies, we had January 6th.  Because of their lies, millions if not billions of dollars of taxpayer money has been spent on recounts and lawsuits.  Thousands of hours of personnel time have been dedicated to debunking Fox’ lies.  And nearly every state in the nation has seized on the false notion that there was significant voter fraud in 2020 to warrant them passing voter suppression laws that will hurt us all.

Oh yes, we can prove ‘actual malice’ in this case.  Fox cared only about one thing … its ratings, not losing viewers and thus advertising money.  Murdoch’s and Hannity’s and Carlson’s and Ingraham’s personal bank accounts and investment portfolios meant more than the trust of the public and thus they betrayed that trust.  What’s to stop the people of this nation from filing a lawsuit?

The Conservative Curse of Gullibility

Y’know, folks, I really think Republicans should have to wear tinfoil hats so we can identify them and keep our distance! Jeff shares a post by Jerry, aka Grumpy, that will either make you laugh, growl, or at the very least shake your head! Thanks, Jeff & Jerry!!!

On The Fence Voters

Our good friend Jerry over at Grumpy’s Grumblings has a post that I’d like to share with you. I’ve included a link at the end to continue reading on his site. Thanks Jerry!

Ronald Reagan said, “The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they’re ignorant; it’s just that they know so much that isn’t so.” When he said that I absolutely agreed with him. Liberals live in a fantasyland where beliefs supersede facts, I believed. What my bias prevented me from seeing at the time was that what might be true, to some degree, of liberals was to a much greater degree true of me and my conservative compatriots.

Sure, every human tends to succumb to confirmation bias, but I’ve come to see that it’s also true that we can overcome those biased beliefs through open-mindedness and objective, fact-based education. And, as I’ve increasingly observed, liberals—generally being better…

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