I don’t know where to begin raving about the book #NEWSFAIL by Allison Kilkenny and Jamie Kilstein, partners in Citizen Radio — there is simply too much cogent insight and common sense from which to excerpt without reprinting the whole damn thing. You need to read it.
Having taught journalism, I am not one to heap unwarranted or extraneous praise where it is not deserved. Still, these darn kids have a shockingly facile gift for sharp, lean and factual analysis and writing that is laced with satire and pointedly illuminating. I should be so talented.
It’s wholly conceivable that critics and hacks will dismiss their work as leftist or propagandist: likely both and then some. Yet the truth is their examination of the media and by extension the democratic ideals from which it emanates is, in reality, quite centrist and fundamental to civic-minded society. The America its citizens were supposedly building as a working model of enlightened humanity for themselves, their children and their global neighbors has been commandeered insidiously by the powerful and moneyed, who are armed with influence over corporatized media that is well lubricated to obfuscate fact with fiction (cue Chomsky’s “Manufacturing Consent”). Do not be afraid; the authors see right through the orchestrated performances and walk us around the veils of deceit.
In a time where U.S. democrats have decidedly turned right of center and republicans are all the way down the block, rampaging and bulldozing ever further toward conservatism, Kilkenny and Kilstein offer a clarion call to moderate the insanity infecting the media and point out the path for restoring the common people to common sensibility.
It’s a quick read so go do it already. And tell everyone you know that the future is still alive and has not been forsaken if only we will engage with our neighbors and the world compassionately and with integrity.
p.s. Simon & Schuster—you need to promote this!