Saturday, June 14, 2008

For Tim Russert: He died the semi-ultimate upper-class white male’s death*

Bob Somerby at The Daily Howler has far more class than I. He is dutifully waiting a respectful period following Tim Russert’s sudden death before once again waging war against the awfulness that is corporate media in America, including NBC, including MSNBC, and including Tim Russert.

My condolences to the Russert family. At least you won't be waging battles with the US Department of Veterans Affairs.

However, since MSNBC and other news outlets are playing pretty much nothing but Canned Yam all day today, screw the respectful pause. They’re just catapulting the propaganda about the guy who catapulted the propaganda.

At the time of his death, Tim Russert had a very, very cushy job -- complete with contracts and clauses and subclauses and pension funds and bonuses and, ironically, excellent medical insurance. He was not worried about foreclosures on any of his houses; his son had gone to college; his elderly father was being well attended.

It was good to be Tim Russert.

It was especially good to be Tim Russert in the America that Tim Russert helped to create by enabling the political facilitators and facilitating the political enablers. Propaganda doesn’t just catapult itself, you know; media narratives don’t just create themselves and endlessly repeat by themselves, you know.

Tim Russert did not die of malnutrition or dysentery or cholera or untreated cancer or untreated diabetes or friendly fire in a war zone or unfriendly fire in a war zone or drowning due to broken levees or PTSD-related suicide. Nor was he mistakenly gunned down to nothing but shredded human skin, as this little Iraqi girl’s family was.

No, Tim Russert died the honorable if wasteful death of so many middle-aged Americans: coronary artery disease. In Russert’s case, I suspect his arteries were clogged not with the usual cholesterol but with the detritus of so many decades’ worth of political bullshit.

The hack is dead. Long live the hack.

*The ultimate upper-class white male's death would, of course, involve coronary artery disease, a fatal drug interaction with Viagra, and a high-class prostitute (male or female).

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