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Operation Prism: The state has no place in the chat rooms of the nation

With the recent palaver over Operation Prism in the United States, the leaking of secret information by Edward Snowden and subsequent media frenzy, I couldn’t help but think of former Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau. In 1969 he mentioned that the citizens have a right to privacy and was referring to sexual orientation when he said “The state has no place in the bedrooms of the nation”. In the present case of the US government spying on citizens’ Internet and mobile phone usage,  perhaps the following is more appropriate!

 

PETrudeauPrism

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CNN lets it hit the fan

Shit happens on CNN in prime time.

Shit

I couldn’t help but notice that CNN has recently gone outside the box, has been living on the edge, has turned the cable news watching world on its ear. How so you may well ask. Simply by allowing people to express themselves on TV as they would normally; yep, I’m talking about the use of the word shit.  It all started when on a couple of episodes of Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown the host uttered the word. Then during the show about Montreal someone said “merde”; French for, you guessed it, shit.

Not since Tweety Bird’s mother shouted “Scat” while wielding a broom at  Sylvester has such a torrent of scatological expression been let loose on prime time viewers.

Not since Tweety Bird’s mother shouted “Scat” while wielding a broom at  Sylvester has such a torrent of scatological expression been let loose on prime time viewers. Bourdain may have opened the shit floodgates –  metaphorically one prays – but it didn’t stop there.  Coverage of the devastation caused by the tornadoes in Oklahoma included a very well spoken, proper-looking gentleman pointing out that though it is often said tornadoes don’t hit the same place twice, having lost two homes he could vouch for that being “Bullshit”.

Tweety

Did the sky fall? Did the world as we know it cease to exist? Was there a furor over these folks talking like folks? Believe it or not, there wasn’t.  For anyone who remembers the ballyhoo that followed Janet Jackson’s Super Bowl wardrobe malfunction you’ll be pleased to hear that maturity has entered the building. (For those not familiar with the Jackson incident, during a Super Bowl halftime performance a few years ago it was alleged she exhibited a nude nipple for a nanosecond. Much like the Zapruder film of the Kennedy assassination, to actually see anything untoward requires the film to be slowed down, blown up and computer enhanced. Yet a media frenzy ensued.)

Much like the Zapruder film of the Kennedy assassination, to actually see anything untoward requires the film to be slowed down, blown up and computer enhanced.

CNNIf the Bourdain and Oklahoma experiments are deemed successful, there’s no telling what’s in store for CNN viewers. Will meteorologist Chad Myers describe a low pressure system as shitty weather? Will commentator David Frum state that Democrats are full of shit and will Paul Begala counter by pointing out that Republicans have shit for brains? Will Dana Bash, after listening to a Senator’s elusive response to her question tell him it’s a crock of shit?  Can we expect Wolf Blitzer to comment on the tense situation regarding North Korea by saying the shit’s going to hit the fan? Does Piers Morgan call the NRA shitheads? The next time Anderson Cooper finds himself reporting from a storm will he say holy shit it’s windy?  The possibilities are endless.

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