The Daily Oklahoman remains obsessed about criticizing anyone who stands up against the gruesome, bloody Iraq occupation that has stretched on for four years now.
Right now that means the newspaper's editorials about the occupation are consistently criticizing and even making fun of about 70 percent of the American people and, perhaps, 50 percent or more of all Oklahomans, according to polls and estimates. (The Oklahoma numbers are related to President George Bush’s overall approval ratings.) It also stands opposed to a majority of Iraqis who want the United States to withdraw its troops.
As Iraq spins into further chaos, the newspaper’s editorials about it have become louder, sarcastic, and even nonsensical. The newspaper runs an enormous number of editorials about the occupation. These editorials always support the Bush administration. They never address opposing viewpoints or fully acknowledge the American death toll or the staggering costs. They merely parrot the Bush administration’s lies. Of course, those who are opposed to the occupation are never given a full voice in the newspaper’s columns.
Overall, the newspaper’s editorials on Iraq raise these larger questions: What would happen to our country if all corporate media, such as The Oklahoman, continued to back the lies of the most corrupt presidential regime in the country’s history? (Many media outlets have recanted their initial support for Bush’s invasion.) Is this what American fascism would look like? Can we learn something politically significant about red states by exploring this one media corporation’s distortions and omissions about the most significant, heinous world event in a generation? How do the newspaper’s editorials help create, sanction, and inform the era of The Big Lie and The Imperial Presidency?
The newspaper’s most recent editorial, “General confusion: Democrats try new bid to cripple Iraq effort” (March 12, 2007), comes from the immoral stew of lies and distortions cooked up this week by the Republican Party. The editorial sarcastically calls Democrats “generals,” accusing them of micromanaging Iraq, because the party simply wants to pass some legislation to bring the occupation to an end in some sensible and reasonable fashion.
The editorial, referring to a House bill, goes on to argue, “The House version, a house of cards designed to placate rabid anti-war Democrats as well as those who don't fancy pulling the rug from under the troops in the field, is so convoluted the Keystone Kops might've done better explaining it.”
Note the word “rabid.” Actually, it’s the pro-war folks who should be called rabid since they continue to support a botched occupation responsible for the deaths of American soldiers and innocent Iraqis on a daily basis. They seem more “rabid” to me, for example, than those who will gather for the Spiritual Walk For Peace this coming Sunday in Oklahoma City. But the main point I would make about the quoted material is that it consists of nothing but cliché-ridden generalities and hyperbole. We have the “house of cards,” the “pulling the rug from under…,” and the “Keystone Kops.” There is nothing substantive here. There is no debate. The editorial only mocks prevailing political views now held by a majority of Americans.
The obvious omission in this editorial is this fact: The country voted Democrats into power last November to stop Bush’s debacle in Iraq. There is no question about this. Democratic legislators are listening to their constituents and trying to build a consensus on specific bills. That’s how democracies function. Maybe the newspaper’s editorial writers have forgotten about this concept over the last six years.
War Protests Scheduled
Two war protests in the Oklahoma City area are scheduled for this coming weekend. The events mark the fourth year of the Iraq occupation.
A Rally For Peace will start at 10:30 a.m, Saturday, March 17 on the South Plaza of the State Capitol. A Spiritual Walk For Peace will begin at 1:30 p.m., Sunday, March 18 at the Episcopal Center at NW Ninth and Robinson.
For more information, check out Blue Oklahoma.