We paid for it in blood and we’re still paying so excuse me if I get frustrated when a little bold at the front desk of my local government facility.
The story of American History begins with a journalist who betwixt Biblical passages and applied them to the teachings of the day. He called it “Common Sense” and in it elaborated on the history of government. His argument was that God didn’t like "Kings" preferring the people to be free from tyranny.
The concept caught on well with George Washington – who read- liked the book and agreed with the precepts. A revolution began the price paid by our forefathers began – in blood – for those who wanted their children to live as God intended – Free.
Remember this was a time before the corporate press which would come into play much later. The King of England wanted press releases regurgitated instead of a free-thinking press demanding open-government “By the People, For the People.” A free-press served as an enemy against tyranny which the tyrants of the day didn’t like very much. As a deterrent to corruption and guarantee our God given freedoms would remain – the rights of a free press was drafted into the constitution – a fundamental freedom guaranteed through the Bill of Rights.
The right to press – meant the right to press copy not the right of an elite group of people as susceptible to corruption as any other.
As technology progressed new challenges faced those champions of democracy and the American Pharoah’s of the day who needed to appease them. The press grew. They were an elite group able to control the masses by limiting information or punishing government forcing their piousness or risking exposure to the people.
The corporations grew and became more powerful. They started wearing name badges to convince the uneducated masses they had special rights. In reality they were just citizens who excersized the right to press. As a local Branson newspaper editor told me, “The freedom of the press is limited to those who have the technology to use it.”
The cold war came and our nation’s fathers purchased brain power from around the world. They were afraid – afraid of the bomb. In order to make sure democracy thrived and America would live long after the dreaded “push of a button” wiped out a major city – the Internet was created. A network is only as strong as its weakest link.. As many of you know, the Internet has no central point of failure. Though one nuclear bomb could wipe out a major city – freedom’s bells would still ring in the Promised Land.
The Internet grew moving from a military and scientific application to a commercial free for all. At first only our allies had it, today everyone has access though some nations restrict its uses – China, with the help of Cisco, Google, Yahoo and AOL have been the most successful in helping them limit the right to press.
Those who capitalized on the Internet had flourishing stocks and traditional media companies who tried their best to ignore this emerging technology suffered economically.
At one point the consolidation of corporate media conglomerates threatened democracy itself and “fairness doctrine” was introduced – a good idea in principle (the idea that journalists should tell both sides of a political story) it limited the ability for the few to place politicians of their liking.
Radio – Television – Cable and finally the Internet – those who chose to exercise the right to press grew. They keep growing. More web pages are pressed than people in the world.
Matt Drudge came along showing that corporate media where there were kings with no clothes. Many websites became powerful. The government, “For the People, By the People” appeased them. The National Security Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation were some of the first releasing information to websites at the same time as the less sophisticated means of pressing.
Some governments didn’t like the idea. After all, this new press didn’t pray to the stockholders of companies they maintained interest in. The newspapers didn’t like it. It cut into their profits by people with far less talent and knowledge than their own staff. They had less control and less power to manipulate the few with “the badge.”
Finally, the newspapers embraced it and some are successful in outplaying the Internet publishers with greater writing talent, multiple mechanisms of exposure and greater integrity then many.
Elected officials caught on. They must have asked themselves, What do people really want?
They want what they always wanted….Freedom
Freedom to be self governed and access to the information they need to be free.
The Kings, Pharaohs and politicians of our day are using the Internet to communicate. The people are using the Internet to acquire information and access the materials produced by the press.
This website is used by citizens, radio stations, television stations and print (people who want to know what is happening in Branson) therefore I’m demanding the same rights they have.
Since some have chosen to dishonor my descendants by limiting publishing material to those dictated by the King - I’m taking a closer look into the documents produced at the people’s expense. I’m also requesting and publishing the Kool-Aid.
I’ve been nice and listened to you tell me to “call the Attorney General “if I don’t like your description of what corporations have the right to press.
Under the auspices of the Sunshine Law I’ve asked for digital copies of e-mails sent by our leaders. I’m asking for the information in the format they were created. Since my government leaders asked for me to draft a policy – one that helps us create a more open “Sunshiny” government I’m not going to the Attorney General. I am however asking that my request be obliged.
After all, we’ve already paid in blood.