Re: attrocious behavior

From: John St. Julien (
Date: Tue May 04 2004 - 10:17:52 PDT


Is the "international channel" you mention NewsWorld International
owned by Vivendi Universal? If so a new Reuters story out of New
Orleans says Al Gore is acquiring it to use as the basis for a new
liberal network. Tangential but interesting.


At 1:04 AM -0600 5/4/04, David Atencio, UNM wrote:
>Hi Mike,
>Your discussion about your students' challenge in finding themselves
>in the current tragedy reminded me of a documentary I happened upon
>late one night a couple of years ago. I caught the very end of a
>film that presented a video conference between Iraqian and American
>college students as they explored each other's culture in a
>"developmentally appropriate" manner. A film crew followed these
>young adults in their own environment so that each group could
>witness each others context from a perspective that was not tainted
>by the mainstream media. My recollection was that all students were
>amazed at how similar life was in many ways but how different they
>were in terms of how they saw themselves in this thing called life.
>It was on the international channel and I never was able to find out
>the title or source of this film. Is anyone aware of this film? I
>would love the opportunity to use it in my teaching.
>David Atencio
>Mike Cole wrote:
>>David, Eugene et al who have been discussing the situation in Iraq.
>>I have not engaged this discussion because I am uncertain how to
>>contribute usefully. The
>>situation is one which I forsaw, taught against, and of course, was
>>run over by.
>>Just two points of potential value.
>>1. As a professor of communication for the past 25 years, I have
>>been stunned over
>>and over again by the extent to which my students, the "top 12 1/2%" of high
>>school students in my state are in a state of incredible ignorance
>>about the world
>>beyond their immediate environment. Without going into detail, my
>>conclusion is that
>>they believe the picture of themselves and their country held up to
>>them by the
>>media. But in using the term media, I do NOT mean the major
>>networks or newspapes.
>>Despite the fact that they are COMMUNICATION students, they cannot see beyond
>>Friends, Buffy, and the Superbowl. When the Iraq crisis was
>>pushed to the brink of war I was teaching a course on
>>reading the news. My students could not identify where Iraq is in
>>the world, could
>>not explain why the US was pressuring Turkey, did not know why the
>>French were
>>involved, and, generally speaking, did not know ANYTHING about the
>>situation that
>>would allow them to have an informed, never mind critical opinion.
>>They also did not
>>appreciate being made aware of any of the circumstances of the situation.
>>2. Tonight, on the PBS Newshour (available, i assume, at or
>>some such address.,
>>there was a program with Ray Suarez that made me proud of the
>>American media. Seymour
>>Hirsh, a retired Marine bigwig, and an Arabic news channel person
>>discussed the situation
>>in terms that made very clear the bottom to top and top to bottom
>>cesspool of US culpability.
>>No holds barred, not excuses.
>>Given our slide into becoming our enemy, noted in this discussion,
>>I was heartened to see that
>>not all voices of resistence in the media have been silenced. And
>>give a thought or two to
>>Don Hewitt of 60 minutes, who others have tried to ease out of his
>>position. He has managed to
>>make the most watched program in the country say the unspeakable
>>routinely for many years and
>>hold onto his ratings. No mean trick.
>>Not worth a lot, but perhaps not worth nothing.


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