You have probably heard about it by now. The president thinks we are all getting too much bad information from the Internet. Supposedly most of the information is stuff that doesn’t always “rate high on the truth meter.” Wait – isn’t this coming from the YouTube president? You know the guy who sent out Twitter updates on the campaign trail, recruited bloggers, and had volunteers update Facebook?
Everything from blogs, iPods, gaming systems—all are a distraction and a diversion. Of course they are. They aren’t a scripted (or more importantly) presidential-approved source of information. This is sad as it’s coming from the guy who sold himself to youth based on his hip tech ways. He seems to think he no longer needs some of those tools he used during the campaign, so all of a sudden no one does. What happened to the Tweets from a Blackberry, the Macbook, the new transparent government webpages? All we ever see anymore are numbers that have been so obviously spun that no one believes them anymore. (Did you catch the president refusing to take answers at the recent signing of the “Press Freedom Act”? I love the irony!)
No wonder alternative media is flourishing. People want to view all sides of a story and decide what they want to hear. Blogs and social media are how they do it. The president took advantage of these same tools before the election, how is it suddenly too much?
Maybe it isn’t too much. It really sounds like it is about control. The message from the president is starting to sound like “if the message isn’t from me, you don’t need to hear it.” That has been a common trend during this administration. Fox News has been a favorite punching bag in particular. The president went as far as asking Democrat senators to stop watching the news on the health care debate. Now while it is admittedly true that there are a lot of inaccuracies reported either on cable news or on the Internet, they don’t seem to get called out when it is supportive of the administration’s policies.
Just look around and check out some of the information that is coming out about what is actually buried in that health care legislation. The costs keep going up and up the more it is reviewed. Those are probably just the distractions the president says we don’t need. Of course maybe that means we need to have an Information Czar – you know, to make sure we don’t get distracted by the full story.
I’ve been rather flippant and lighthearted to this point, but this is actually a very serious matter.
Controlling information in the 21st century is the key to controlling people. We’re all so dependent now on the free flow of information that it is the basis for everyday decisions we make. If there is a terrible car accident on the highway, many of us will find out beforehand and take a detour. If there is a hurricane forming in the Gulf, residents across the southeast will start taking preparations days ahead. If food prices are soaring and experts are warning of shortages, we began to make plans to become food independent.
Obama recognizes this and in it he rightly sees that a more prepared, better informed public is one that is a greater threat to his tyrannical plans for the nation. Don’t fool yourself into thinking this is merely about controlling his daily political message so the White House stays out in front of the day’s news; this truly is about controlling the sheeple.