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Economy
See other Economy Articles

Title: Sh*tshow!: The Country's Collapsing and the Ratings Are Great --- book by Charlie LeDuff
Source: [None]
URL Source: [None]
Published: Jun 5, 2018
Author: David Weinberg
Post Date: 2018-06-05 21:37:25 by tpaine
Keywords: None
Views: 1031
Comments: 18

Sh*tshow!: The Country's Collapsing and the Ratings Are Great by Charlie LeDuff

The Insanity of Daily Life in America

Reporters are privileged. They get to talk to people in the street and at their homes. No one else can do that. They get to query politicians and corporate executives. They get to talk to the actors in standoffs, protests and riots. They visit people 20 years after their 15 minutes of fame in some crime or incident. They find out things that others can’t even imagine. And they have a platform to tell the world about it all.

Unfortunately, television news reporters like Charlie LeDuff then distill it down to a formulaic minute and a half, glossing over the truth and featuring any sort of violence as the main point (“If it bleeds, it ledes”). So the real truth doesn’t necessarily make it to air. A longer format show allowed him to fill in those details. Shitshow! follows him all over the country over the three years of the show. It made him into a war correspondent.

LeDuff describes himself as a “street reporter … The story was and always will be the American people scratching it out from Ferguson to Flint.” He proposed a series to Fox, his employer, that would be broadcast by its 18 owned major- market stations (as opposed to a cable network), and would focus on what was happening across the country at street level. He called it The Americans.

He found all kinds of commonalities on the street, including racism, frustration, boredom and above all poverty. The middle class had been melting away, as decent paying jobs became minimum wage (or less). The races clashed, but it was poverty that put them in that position. Even in North Dakota, where stories of fracking fortunes drew thousands north, he found pathetic poverty. Yes, some were making $100,000. But they were working the equivalent of three jobs to do it. And their expenses were enormous as everyone wanted a cut. And then there was government.

The government had betrayed everyone too many times to ever be trusted again. It cut their pay, crippled them with taxes, rolled back their pensions, took away social programs, robbed their tax dollars, kneecapped their unions and even poisoned their water. And if that weren’t enough, governments, in the form of police, were shooting at them.

As a journalist, LeDuff dug deep and was persistent, as well as creative. He got his stories, often at great risk to his own life and of his cameramen. He got into Cliven Bundy’s camp, and made it into Reynosa, Mexico, to talk to would-be emigrants. He was in Ferguson for the riots. And all the time, he was battling his employer Fox, which was redirecting his efforts, denying his expenses and calling him off when political pressure was applied. It was almost a race against not being able to complete the task. He quit the night Trump was elected, and has been writing this book ever since.

LeDuff is perceptive. On union-busting states, he points out there are only four non-union Volkswagen plants in the world: in Russia, China and Tennessee. Hypocrisy is a way of life in the USA. The everyday corruption is depressing. And Americans’ views are at best suspect: “The American is generally poorly instructed in his own history, not because it is especially difficult to learn, but rather because it is difficult to hear.” It all forms part of the shitshow he sees everywhere.

For a working definition of a shitshow, there is the story of a Detroit police sergeant, shot trying to stop a mad killer. In 20 years, he had never fired a shot on duty, and was both highly respected and effective. The police “brotherhood” and politicians took over his funeral and made the usual big deal of it, but his widow still had to pay for it. They promoted him posthumously to captain, but did not give the family a captain’s pension or benefits. They magnanimously extended his healthcare for the whole family, including his five year old son, but only for five years. Then they were on their own. That’s a shitshow.

Interestingly, while LeDuff looks like a Sean Penn, and writes like a Damon Runyon, he is actually largely black. He has a hard time filtering all the prejudice he sees, and is plainly disgusted with politicians as an entire class. The book is as breezy as his speech – street level, straight talking, and salty. It’s a reading pleasure that makes the content easier to take.

There is a running joke, at the expense of both Fox and officious security. Everywhere LeDuff went, he inevitably couldn’t complete his reporting without resorting to a fake Press ID he had assembled himself, printed and laminated to look official. It says “News Media Press Official Identification”. He had to kludge something together, because his Fox News employer wouldn’t issue them to the news team. It has his name, photo, and a barcode from a candy bar. It got him past absolutely everyone and in to see absolutely everyone. Again and again. For years. Another shitshow.

LeDuff is a fine storyteller, a hardworking journalist and an honest witness (with all the weaknesses of honest witnesses). I wouldn’t want him running the country (he actually recommended himself to Donald Trump as VP), but he’s a great one to have on your side.

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#1. To: tpaine (#0)

Hondo68  posted on  2018-06-05   22:28:29 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#2. To: tpaine, Vicomte13, Tooconservative, Pinguinite, sneakypete, Deckard (#0)

Yes, some were making $100,000. But they were working the equivalent of three jobs to do it. And their expenses were enormous as everyone wanted a cut. And then there was government.

The government had betrayed everyone too many times to ever be trusted again.

All those suckers working themselves to death, made a fundamental error.

They should have been born with a silver spoon in their mouth as independently rich. They would not have to work one day in their life, their untaxed wealth would grow exponentially and other poor suckers would worship them.

Have some Kool-Aid

A Pole  posted on  2018-06-06   13:59:30 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#3. To: A Pole (#2)

Have some Kool-Aid

You don't live in America. Why do you care?

Maybe you should head out to your local Polish death camps where millions of Jews and others were murdered and have some Zyklon-B.

Tooconservative  posted on  2018-06-06   14:17:30 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#4. To: Tooconservative (#3)

You don't live in America. Why do you care?

I am citizen of the world.

Maybe you should head out to your local Polish death camps where millions of Jews and others were murdered and have some Zyklon-B.
You want to gas me? ;)

A Pole  posted on  2018-06-06   14:49:19 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#5. To: A Pole, *Neo-Lib Chickenhawk Wars* (#4)

You want to gas me? ;)

It's for your own good.

~We had to gas the Syrians to save them.

Hondo68  posted on  2018-06-06   15:07:28 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#6. To: A Pole (#4)

I am citizen of the world.

Then go back to Mars.

Tooconservative  posted on  2018-06-06   15:21:59 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#7. To: hondo68 (#5)

It's for your own good.

I know, I know

A Pole  posted on  2018-06-07   2:48:07 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#8. To: hondo68, tpaine (#1)

Hondo, have you (or anyone else) actually watched this interview with Martha McCallum?

This author claims America is "Angry". ALL OF IT. But he makes no distinction WHY.

He portrays himself as some kind of Lewis and Clark of America, neutral observer, a "Yoda" of sorts, gauging American morale, politics and the economy and discovering "A-HA!" moments about this country.

Here's the problem: He's a fake, a phony, a propagandist. (Why didn't he write a book about his hysterics and "revelation" during the 0bama Regime that absolutely CRUSHED the Middle-Class, sold out American security, and enabled a corrupt Deep State?)

When "Trump" (who is pumping UP the US economy and morale) is blamed co-equally as part of the overall problem on a par with Bernie Sanders; When Dem-led Communism is ignored and systemic corruption of Democrat-controlled cities LIKE DETROIT is rife (the city where he dramatically plays golf from one end of the cratered Dem-city to the other)...

If there is NO mention of it or direct blame of Dems -- you KNOW this "report" is 100% BS and misdirection. Yes, more propaganda.

America is "angry" over punks like this who "kinda spread the fake news around". Blaming Trump for ANYTHING is the dead give-away. McCallum EPIC FAIL.

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-08   12:35:36 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#9. To: A Pole (#2)

The government had betrayed everyone too many times to ever be trusted again.

All those suckers working themselves to death, made a fundamental error.

They should have been born with a silver spoon in their mouth as independently rich...Have some Kool-Aid

Can you clarify your context?

I interpret it to mean the whiny author is delusion if his premise is that EVERYONE deserves or merits $100k per year/"Silver Spoon", otherwise the economy is a "failure".

Yes, the gummint HAS betrayed us -- ESPECIALLY those DEMOCRATS/RINOs espousing Socialism-Communism -- but basically every gimmint in history has -- precisely because of systemic corruption and elitism. The USA has indeed been LESS prone as even the poor have traditionally arisen to become wealthy. So...really, what IS the author's real beef? Is he just about selling books and nuke-blaming capitalism equally with Communism?

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-08   13:25:28 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#10. To: Tooconservative, A Pole (#6)

("I am citizen of the world.")

Then go back to Mars.

Hilarious exchange.

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-08   13:26:28 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#11. To: A Pole (#4)

You want to gas me? ;)

You wanna know who would??:

The Dem-Commie 0bama-Wing/NWO-Deep State machination. UNLESS you/we agree to embrace their Big Lie and become their vassals, serfs, and slaves again.

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-08   13:29:47 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#12. To: tpaine, Tooconservative (#0) (Edited)

LeDuff describes himself as a “street reporter … The story was and always will be the American people scratching it out from Ferguson to Flint.”

He proposed a series to Fox, his employer, that would be broadcast by its 18 owned major- market stations (as opposed to a cable network), and would focus on what was happening across the country at street level. He called it The Americans.

He found all kinds of commonalities on the street, including racism, frustration, boredom and above all poverty. The middle class had been melting away, as decent paying jobs became minimum wage (or less). The races clashed, but it was poverty that put them in that position.

The author (where is the link to the story?) is a shill.

LeDuff. What an agitator. Exactly what is LeDuff's "job"? No, I mean his REAL "job"? How has HE made a living? Anyone know? How about THAT exposé?

Seems like his self-described job as a "Street Reporter" is subsidized by a nefarious employer. TheIf we "scratch" a bit, will we know the tentacles of the "Communitah Organizer" org?

People have been "scratching" for a living since Adam and Even and Cain were banished from Paradise. As is the natural course for the vast majority of humanity, including America.

Lastly, we should note that using vulgar, shock-value language (in this case "Sh*t-Show", a title to a book) is the trademark of the Dem Liberal-Left.

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-08   13:43:35 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#13. To: Liberator (#12)

LeDuff. What an agitator. Exactly what is LeDuff's "job"? No, I mean his REAL "job"? How has HE made a living? Anyone know? How about THAT exposé?

I'm not subscribing to cable these days so I don't see the full dose of FNC (I just download some YouBoob vids of Tucker Carlson for fun but that's it).

But looking at this guy and reading the article makes me think he's another of FNC's really dicey guests. They've certainly had some over the years.

Tooconservative  posted on  2018-06-08   14:23:45 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#14. To: Tooconservative (#13) (Edited)

Looking at this guy and reading the article makes me think he's another of FNC's really dicey guests. They've certainly had some over the years.

Yup. In their attempt to appear "fair and balanced." Some of the guest on Tucker's show are certifiably insane. Bad enough they actually pay Comrade Juan Williams to be an annoying lying weaselly Leftist shill.

I'll watch FNC occasionally these days, only because the MSM is lying their azz off

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-08   14:47:32 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#15. To: Liberator, Fake anti-establishment prez (#8)

If there is NO mention of it or direct blame of Dems

When "Trump" (who is pumping UP the US economy and morale) is blamed co-equally as part of the overall problem

Because they're only half of the D&R uni-party. You seem to think that Trump and the Republican half of the party talks a good game, but they're equally part of the problem. It has to be bi-partisan for all this evil legislation to pass, and for the deep state to survive this long. It's still growing and becoming more totalitarian every day.

Inflation and unemployment, opioid & other drugs are rampant, and the President's tariff tax increases and sanctions are adding fuel to the fire.

Trump has the policies of Hillary/Obama and the cabinet of George W. Bush.

Jeb! and Chelsea must be very pleased with him, not to mention Moochelle.

Hondo68  posted on  2018-06-08   14:48:07 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#16. To: Tooconservative (#13)

You can watch these shows on youboob afterward.

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-08   14:48:26 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#17. To: hondo68 (#15) (Edited)

("If there is NO mention of it or direct blame of Dems")

Because they're only half of the D&R uni-party.

Makes no sense for the conspicuous omission of Dems AND conspicuous blame of Trump -- especially when the economy is roaring under Trump.

You seem to think that Trump and the Republican half of the party talks a good game, but they're equally part of the problem. It has to be bi-partisan for all this evil legislation to pass, and for the deep state to survive this long. It's still growing and becoming more totalitarian every day.

Yes, "more totalitarian" -- thanks to 0bama, Dubya and the Klintoons. And then there's been the ongoing Deep State coup against TRUMP...Where have you been??

NO WAY are is the GOP remotely as much as "problem" as the Dem Party. Do you even realize the majority of Dems are now COMMUNISTS??

And though it's obvious that the GOP is divided between 0bama-enabler GOPe/RINOs (like McCain and Ryan), and the pro-MAGA conservative wing, you still don't grasp this. OR the ongoing coup against Trump.

Inflation and unemployment, opioid & other drugs are rampant, and the President's tariff tax increases and sanctions are adding fuel to the fire.

Once anyone mentions something like, "opioid & other drugs are rampant", I know they get their talking points from Tee-Bee. And Fake News networks like the "Comedy" Channel, MSNBC and CNN. 8 years of 0bama CREATED THAT PROBLEM. Hullo.

"Inflation? Yup, you can blame/"credit" Dubya and 0bama again. That's 16 years of Globalist First policies.

The FAIR tariffs levied by savvy buisness man/Prez Trump haven't begun to take effect and here you are again parroting establishment Dem/RINO talking points.

Do you even understand WHY Trump is compelled to levy tariffs? Why do you support Euro/ChiCom tariffs on US imports of 30%, but on US tariffs of their good, only 10%?

Trump has the policies of Hillary/Obama and the cabinet of George W. Bush.

Move way to the back of the class. You're obviously not paying any real attention, are you?

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-08   15:05:01 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#18. To: Liberator, Deep State coup, against Joe Sixpack, tariff tax increases (#17)

Do you even understand WHY Trump is compelled to levy tariffs?

Because he loves big stupid government and needs to raise taxes to grow & protect the deep state.

Your dollars are worth less every day, so the Donnell needs more of them to keep his Deep State ponzi scheme going.

Tricky Donny Trump, keeper of LBJ, 0bama, Dubya and the Klintoons Deep State

Hondo68  posted on  2018-06-08   16:28:05 ET  (1 image) Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


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