News media must investigate issues
In this aftermath of the 2008 economic disaster, with its slow and miserable recovery and subsequent political polarization, is it any wonder that the issue of fracking has also become so very polarized?
On one hand, we are promised financial windfalls, massive job creation, cleaner air and even national security benefits.
On the other hand, we get dire warnings of permanently contaminated water supplies, boom-and-bust community development, the disappearance of peaceful rural life and renewable energy setbacks.
I am struck by how similarly these issues _ the fracking debate and the economy debate _ are being covered by the mass media. Instead of investigative journalism, where documented facts and reliable information are paramount, we are being spoon fed "he said _ she said" journalism that makes little attempt to challenge the accuracy of either side's claims, but caters instead to our lowest instincts and confirmation biases.
As a result, more and more people are being lured toward news sources that just say more of what they want to hear and less of what the other side has to offer. Just pick any hot issue and count how many people are aware of the other side's facts, arguments and points of view.
Unfortunately, being considered "well-informed" today has undergone a dark and dangerous partisan transformation.
Our institutions (government, education, radio, television, the print media) which in the past have been fairly reliable as truth tellers (albeit not always in a timely manner and not always at the same time), are now so heavily influenced by wealthy power brokers and the corporate bottom line that an individual is left pretty much on his own to discover the truth.
How tragic that in this time of the Internet, social media and mobile communication, truth seems increasingly so difficult to come by.
Graveyard theft was despicable act
A few days before Memorial Day, my son and I went to Glenwood Cemetery to be sure of the number of plants we needed for our containers at the grave. We were overwhelmed to find that the two concrete urns were not there. The caretaker said he knew nothing about the removal!
Those urns had been there for more than 40 years, as they were purchased at the time of my mother's death. My father and my dear husband, Wes Coddington, who was a tail gunner on a B25 with the Flying Tigers in the CBI Theater during World War II, are buried there, also.
My son and I purchased two more containers with beautiful red flowers in them and took them to the grave. My son put metal spikes in them so they would not blow away, as I did not purchase concrete ones again.
Last Thursday, my son called and said the flowers and containers had been stolen again.
How can anyone do that and why would anyone do that? Is it for fun or just being cruel?