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Where realism and idealism meet Tony Brasunas, author of Double Happiness

My Take on 2020 and This Wild Election

This is not what you’re expecting. In other years at this time I’ve sent you extensive breakdowns of every important race, measure, and proposition Northern Californians are voting on.

This year is different. Politics have turned topsy-turvy, I haven’t had time to research more than a handful of races, and I’m spending what little free time I have writing a book about media distortion, propaganda, and fake news. It’s a fascinating topic. But a number of you have reached out recently and asked for my take on current events and the election. Rather than one long post, I’m covering the election in this post, and my thoughts on the craziness in the media in another post.

This 2020 Election

PRESIDENT

Yes there is this race between Donald Trump and Joe Biden and some never-mentioned third-party candidates. I watched the debates, and I’ve been watching American presidential politics closely for over 20 years, and I can honestly say I’ve never been less excited about the candidates. This must be rock bottom. Even the Green Party candidate, Howie Hawkins, isn’t particularly good. The Libertarian, Jo Jorgensen, might just be the best of the bunch, which is saying very little. But you’re probably not reading this far to learn about my weak preference for Jo Jorgensen. Perhaps you’ve already voted anyway. Or perhaps you believe in QAnon or Russiagate and your mind is already made up. Our brutally rigged political process means only Trump and Biden have a chance of winning. We all know that. And they’re both very, very bad candidates to lead this country, so bad that the infuriating and surprising truth is…  I don’t have a strong preference between them. That’s right. Maybe this isn’t what you expected, maybe this even enrages you; this country is so divided right now that both sides see the other side as an existential threat to everything sacred about life. So, before you shame me or others who don’t see it the way you do, before I lay out the nearly infinite reasons each man is unfit to lead, I’ll let you know I do see reasons for supporting both Biden and Trump, and I’ll list them so that maybe, just maybe, we can all understand each other a bit more and rage and fear a little less. I hope you’ll consider that there are reasons to support that other old, white, corrupt, racist, rapist — the one that you don’t support.

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Posted in Balanced Media Diet | Covid Pandemic
by Tony Brasunas on October 30, 2020

Tracking Media Distortion on the Virus & Lockdowns

I’m spending what little free time I have writing a book about media distortion, propaganda, and fake news. It’s a fascinating topic. But a number of you have reached out recently and asked for my take on current events and this upcoming election. Rather than one giant post, I’m putting my thoughts on the election in another post so that this can stay slightly smaller.

The election is crucial, but it’s even more important is to see that today our great nation is suffering from media distortion run amok. The mainstream corporate media has been an utter nightmare this year. There’s so little honest reporting it’s as if every type of distortion I’m writing about in my book is happening this year right right before our eyes. Or maybe I just see it more clearly because I’m looking.

So, the most important thing to do in 2020: Broaden and balance your media diet! I get specific on how to do that below.

In my forthcoming book, I document the levels of distortion used to sell the Iraq War in 2003, the perspectives suppressed, the journalists silenced and fired. This distortion today in 2020 about this virus and these crippling lockdowns has already blown that era out of the water. I have been astounded at the level of censorship and bias in the mainstream media.

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Posted in Balanced Media Diet | Covid Pandemic | Politics | Red, White & Blind
by Tony Brasunas on October 29, 2020

A Month of Coronavirus: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

It’s overwhelming, isn’t it, this sudden change in American life? It’s been a month now, and it’s utterly thrown me off balance. I’ve been unable to put my thoughts together, and when I’ve tried to write I’ve often found my ideas out of date by the next day.

But as the number of cases in the United States has swelled to somewhere around 0.1% of the population, approximately the remaining 99.9% of us are suffering from hypochondria, fear, and panic about our health, our job security, or our family. This is partly because the corporate media has been on full-scale freak-out mode for the entire month, and while it is important to be informed, it isn’t healthy to be in the constant state of anxiety and fear the mainstream media channels apparently cannot resist instilling in us. So today I’m finally writing, from the perspective of the 99.9%.

There’s actually some very good news to discuss, as well as some bad news to more thoroughly understand, and there’s some other news, some troubling developments I’m calling “ugly.”

So here’s what I’m calling the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly about this whole pandemic, trying to put the good news and the bad news into perspective. Think of it as a summary of where we are today in this bizarre and hopefully short chapter in American history.

THE GOOD

Well, to start off, some really good news about this virus has emerged recently, if there can ever be “good news” about a virus. I’ve been tracking several streams of data for weeks, from a variety of sources, including raw numbers, projections about new cases and deaths, and news about transmission, treatments, and cures. All of it took a turn for the better this week.

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Posted in Covid Pandemic | Politics
by Tony Brasunas on April 11, 2020