Mainstream media (MSM) are those media disseminated via the largest distribution channels, which therefore represent what the majority of media consumers are likely to encounter. The term also denotes those media generally reflective of the prevailing currents of thought, influence, or activity.
Large news conglomerates, including newspapers and broadcast media, which underwent successive mergers in the U.S. and elsewhere at an increasing rate beginning in the 1990s, are often referenced by the term. This concentration of media ownership has raised concerns of a homogenization of viewpoints presented to news consumers. Consequently, the term mainstream media has been widely used in conversation and the blogosphere, often in oppositional, pejorative, or dismissive senses, in discussion of the mass media and media bias.
Media organizations such as CBS and the New York Times set the tone for other smaller news organizations by creating conversations which cascade down to the smaller news organizations lacking the resources to do more individual research and coverage, that primary method being through the Associated Press where many news organizations get their news. This results in a recycling effect wherein organic thought is left to the mainstream that choose the conversation and smaller organizations recite absent of a variance in perspective.
March 10th, 2013
The mainstream media is absolutely giddy that the U.S. unemployment rate has hit a "four-year low" of 7.7 percent. But is unemployment in the United States actually going down? After all, you would think that it should be. The Obama administration has "borrowed" more than 6 trillion dollars from future generations of Americans, interest rates have been pushed to all-time lows, and the Federal Reserve has been wildly printing more money in a desperate attempt to "stimulate" the economy. So have those efforts been successful? Well, according to the mainstream media, the U.S. unemployment rate is falling steadily. Headlines all over the nation boldly declared that "236,000 jobs" were added to the economy in February, but what they didn't tell you was that the number of Americans "not in the labor force" rose by 296,000. And that is how they are getting the unemployment rate to go down - by pretending that huge numbers of unemployed Americans don't want jobs. Sadly, as you will see below, the truth is that the percentage of working age Americans that have a job is just 0.1% higher than it was exactly three years ago. And we have not even come close to getting back to where we were before the last economic crisis. For example, more than 146 million Americans were employed back in 2007. But today, only 142.2 million Americans have a job even though our population has grown steadily since then. So where in the world is this "economic recovery" that they keep talking about?
At this point, the "unemployment rate" has become so meaningless that it really isn't even worth paying much attention to. If you really want to know what the employment picture looks like in the United States, you need to look at the employment-population ratio.
As Wikipedia tells us, many economists consider the employment-population ratio to be far superior to other measurements of employment...
The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development defines the employment rateas the employment-to-population ratio. The employment-population ratio is many American economist's favorite gauge of the American jobs picture. According to Paul Ashworth, chief North American economist for Capital Economics, "The employment population ratio is the best measure of labor market conditions." This is a statistical ratiothat measures the proportion of the country's working-age population (ages 15 to 64 in most OECD countries) that is employed. This includes people that have stopped looking for work.
As you can see, the percentage of Americans with a job fell from about 63 percent to below 59 percent during the last economic crisis. Since that time, it has not risen back above 59 percent. This is the first time in the post-World War II era that we have not seen the employment rate bounce back following a recession. At this point, the employment-population ratio has been below 59 percent for 42 months in a row.
Yes, we should be thankful that things have stabilized, but as you can see there has been no recovery. The percentage of Americans with a job is essentially exactly where it was three years ago. Despite the trillions of dollars that the U.S. government has borrowed, and despite the reckless money printing that the Federal Reserve has been doing, the employment situation in the U.S. has not turned around.
Data for the employment-population ratio from the beginning of 2008
So is there anyone out there that still wants to insist that the employment picture in the United States is getting significantly better?
Anyone that wants to claim that "unemployment is going down" should at least wait until the unemployment-population ratio gets back up to 59 percent. Otherwise they just look foolish.Yes, the Dow is at an all-time high right now. But a bubble is always the biggest right before it bursts.
Most Americans understand that the Dow has been pumped up with all of the funny money that the Fed has been printing. Most Americans understand that the stock market really does not accurately reflect the health of the U.S. economy as a whole.
Just consider these numbers...
- The number of homeless people sleeping in homeless shelters in New York City has increased by 19 percent over the past year.
- The number of Americans on food stamps has risen from 32 million to 47 million while Barack Obama has been in the White House.
- According to the U.S. Census Bureau, more than 146 million Americans are either "poor" or "low income" at this point.
- Median household income in the United States has fallen for four consecutive years.No, the truth is that everything is most definitely not fine.If everything is fine, then why did the Federal Reserve inject another 100 billion dollars into foreign banks during the last full week of February?
The U.S. government and the Federal Reserve are desperately trying to prop up the entire global economy. Unfortunately, the global financial system has been built on a foundation of sand and the tide is coming in.Back in 2008, a derivatives crisis was one of the primary causes of the worst financial panic since the Great Depression.
So did we learn our lesson?No, the boys on Wall Street are back at it again as a recent article by Jim Armitage described...Historically, stock markets, being driven by humans, have tended to have a similar length memory of catastrophes, before making the same dumb mistakes again.But it hasn't even been five years since derivatives (on that occasion based on daft mortgages) blew up the world, and yet these exotic creatures have already returned. With a vengeance.Research from Thomson Reuters declared that banks were creating more derivatives known as asset-backed securities than at any time since before the Lehman Brothers crash. Of those, 22 percent were made up of – and forgive me the alphabet soup here – CDOs and CLOs. The very type of derivatives that exploded last time. At this stage last year, only 6 percent fell into those categories.
- In other words, banks are creating more of the riskiest types of the riskiest products.
- At some point, we will have another derivatives crisis even worse than the last one.
- When that happens, financial markets all over the globe will crash, economic activity will grind to a standstill and unemployment will go skyrocketing once again.
- But as you saw above, we have never even come close to recovering from the last crisis.
- So you can believe the mind-numbing propaganda that the mainstream media is trying to feed you if you want. Unfortunately, the reality of the matter is that we have not recovered from the last major economic crisis, and another one is rapidly approaching.I hope that you are getting ready. The Chart That Proves That The Mainstream Media Is Lying To You About Unemployment –
(NaturalNews) In yet another stunning victory for the alternative media (InfoWars, Drudge Report, Natural News, WND, etc.), the story of the U.S. government stockpiling huge quantities of ammunition (1.6 billion rounds and counting) has finally broken through media censorship and gone mainstream.
Forbes.com contributor Ralph Benko recently wrote a piece calling for a "national conversation" on why the U.S. federal government would need to stockpile enough ammunition to wage a 20-year domestic war against the American people.Remember, until this piece was published, the entire leftist media (NPR, MSNBC, CNN and countless leftist websites) all pretended these 1.6 billion bullets were imaginary and didn't exist. It was all a grand "conspiracy theory," we were told, and anyone who reported the truth on the government's ammo purchases was labeled a fringe lunatic.As it turned out, the leftist media was delusional, because the numbers don't lie: The Department of Homeland Security really has purchased over 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition, thousands of full-auto assault rifles, and thousands of armored assault vehicles -- all for use inside the United States, on the streets of America.Why is the federal government arming up domestically?The hardware build-up has been called a "domestic arms race," and it's starting to make even mainstream media journalists nervous. Benko writes that the 1.6 billion rounds of ammo being purchased by DHS represents "...a stockpile that would last DHS over a century. To claim that it's to "get a low price" for a ridiculously wasteful amount is an argument that could only fool a career civil servant."
He also points out that this huge arms race of weapons, ammo and armored vehicles by the federal government is taking place right in the middle of the claimed "sequester" which the government claims has sharply curtailed its ability to spend money. So while Janet Napolitano threatens to release criminals onto the streets of America, behind the scenes the government is actually building up an ammo stockpile so huge that it could wage a 20-year war against the American people.
World Net Daily has also covered the story, saying, "the federal government's extraordinary buildup of ammunition looks even more ominous than critics already have portrayed it."In 1997, WND exposed the fact that 60,000 federal agents were enforcing more than 3,000 criminal laws. In 1999, Joseph Farah warned there were more than 80,000 armed federal law enforcement agents, constituting "the virtual standing army over which the founding fathers had nightmares." Today, that number has nearly doubled.
In 2008, WND reported on proposed rules to expand the military's use inside U.S. borders to prevent "environmental damage" or respond to "special events" and to establish policies for "military support for civilian law enforcement."
It's time that government-worshipping leftists stopped behaving as if they were delusional children in a make-believe fairy land and started facing reality. It's time we all asked the question loudly and repeatedly: Why is the federal government arming up against the American people? Who gave the order and what is the purpose of it all?
And at what point do Alex Jones, Sarah Palin, Joseph Farah and others get their long-deserved apology for accurately and courageously warning the public about all this, even in the face of being labeled lunatics for telling the truth?
Finally, what has become of journalism in America when people who ask real questions are attacked and marginalized while those who parrot government lies are looked upon as "authoritative" sources?Learn more: HERE | Government ammunition stockpiling story breaks through media censorship and goes mainstream - 3/13/2013
19 Mar 2013
By The Daily Beast, Winston Ross11:31PM GMT
Only she wasn't referring to the victim, or even to the crime, but to the "two young men that had such promising futures, star football players, very good students," who "literally watched as they believed their lives fell apart."On the screen as correspondent Poppy Harlow spoke was the headline, "Two high school football stars found guilty." Not, as some critics have pointed out, "Two rapists found guilty." Harlow's comments and the rest of the segment have ignited a whole new firestorm in an alreadysensational case that has garnered international attention and the ire of vindictive hackers, while creating a deep divide in the battered steel town of Steubenville.
Less than 24 hours after the verdict, the focus has shifted, sharply, from the contents of the five-day trial to the coverage of it and the reaction from some to its conclusion. (CNN didn't respond to repeated requests for comment.) Harlow may have come across as sympathetic to the convicted rapists, Trent Mays and Ma'lik Richmond, but others made no attempt to hide that they disagreed with the verdict.Responses like this have horrified people across the country. By Monday morning, the largest of three petitions on Change.org demanding an apology from CNN for its "disgusting" coverage had collected more than 30,000 signatures.
"The criminals were almost becoming the victims," said John Szarowski of Corinna, Maine, who started a similar petition on Change.org. "Now their lives were destroyed. There was no mention at all of their victim, and the life they destroyed." Harlow's report was part of a six-minute segment that mentioned the victim only in passing. After her opening statement, the reporter went on to recount the dramatic blow-by-blow of what happened next, as she sat three feet away. "It was very difficult to watch," Harlow said. "Ma'lik's father got up and spoke. Ma'lik has been living with guardians, and his father, a former alcoholic, has gotten in a lot of trouble with the law. He stood up and told the court 'I feel responsible. I feel like I wasn't there for my son.' He came over to where his son was sitting, he approached him, hugged him, whispered in his ear. Ma'lik's attorney said to us 'I have never heard him tell his son 'I love you.' But he just did today.' This was an incredibly emotional day." Host Candy Crowley nodded sympathetically. "Regardless of what big football players they are, they still sound like 16-year-olds," she said.
Ohio teen football players found guilty of rape 17 Mar 2013Less than 24 hours after the verdict, the focus has shifted, sharply, from the trial to the coverage of it.The victim's mother, Harlow pointed out, made a statement after the sentencing, saying she had "pity for you both." Twitter exploded with displeasure.
Rachel Dissell covered the trial for the Cleveland Plain Dealer. She was in the courtroom when the verdict was read, and she backed up Harlow's description of the scene as an emotional one. "They didn't get that part wrong," Dissell told The Daily Beast. She says she can also understand the network keying off of the footage it had to work with. "If they had video of the victim crying, they would have keyed in on that." But still, Dissell found the CNN segment surprising. "After watching all of that testimony, [it looked like] they've come to the conclusion it was just these boys who had their lives ruined." Richmond's attorney, Walter Madison, defended the network's handling of the verdict.
"There wasn't a dry eye in the courtroom," Madison told The Daily Beast."I think what really tapped into people's emotions is the fact that they sat in the trial for those five excruciating days, that their inherent sense of equity and proportion was off. They didn't hear Ma'lik Richmond's name very much." Madison did not expect a guilty verdict, he said."We didn't prepare a statement from Ma'lik. We were not prepared for what we heard, just because of the lack of evidence we felt was against him," Madison said.
And yet, even when that verdict was read, Richmond got up, walked over to the family in the courtroom and apologized, "under such stress and emotion which would not have given him an opportunity to reflect. What you saw was his first instinct, even when his life and his liberty was in jeopardy. His first instinct was to show compassion for somebody else. Either he's a hell of an actor, or he was sincere. I think everybody in that courtroom who shed a tear, every news reporter, not just CNN CNN, God bless them for having the courage to report what they saw. That was part of the day. They didn't make it up." They didn't make it up, but Harlow made a choice other news outlets didn't.
3/21/2013ABC News' coverage from Alex Perez in Steubenville did mention Mays and Richmond crying in court, but only after noting that prosecutors might bring more charges against others who failed to report the rape. And after describing "tears of pain streaming from both sides," Perez pivoted to "emotion and compassion prosecutors say Mays and Richmond should have shown before."CNN feels sorry for Steubenville Rapists - 3/20/2013
March 21, 2013Media Now Calling Patriots "Hate Groups" HERE | SAME OLD RHETORIC: Media Calling Patriots “Hate Groups” [VIDEO] - 3/21/2013
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) on Thursday said leaks to the media have hurt the progress of the Senate’s closed-door talks on immigration reform.McCain said the leaks are damaging because they don’t give the public the whole picture of how the negotiations are proceeding.He is a member of the Gang of Eight senators involved in protracted discussions over an immigration deal that the group hopes will be completed by the end of the month.“I’m not discussing what we’re discussing,” said McCain to reporters gathered near the Senate’s subway.“One of the things, frankly, that has hurt us, is the selective leaks that have gone on. It’s been very unhelpful to the progress we’ve been trying to make," he said.“Sometimes the leaks are accurate. Sometimes they’re inaccurate. Sometimes they have to do with ongoing discussions we’re having. It never helps to have selective leaks on any issue that I’ve ever been involved in, until you get the final product and then everybody has a whole picture.”
The other members of the group are Sens. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.).Leaks from the senators have been minimal and revealed only how the talks are developing, with little mention of the details.Republicans have heavily criticized the White House's leak last month of a draft copy of the president's immigration proposal.Earlier Thursday, Schumer told reporters that the group was meeting for several hours over the course of the day and had made significant progress.A sticking point for the senators is how to deal with differing opinions on the number of high-skilled temporary guest-worker visas to grant.
Senators are considering raising the current cap on visas from 65,000, which does not include an additional 20,000 for immigrants with advanced educational degrees.Another problem arose on Thursday when a spokesman for the Building and Construction Trades Department at the AFL-CIO said that the union does not support the Chamber of Commerce’s desire to increase the number of low-skilled guest worker visas that are granted. The union spokesman told CQ Roll Call that expanding the number of “W” visas would hurt American construction workers.
McCain said the Gang of Eight’s final proposal would not please everyone and that each side needs to compromise.“I’m sure that whatever we agree to will not satisfy anyone, because we have to make compromises in order to get a broad bipartisan agreement,” McCain said. “I’m sure that everyone will want something better.”
March 21, 2013
Southwest border violence has reached such a dangerous boiling point that both Mexican and American journalists forsaken their reporting about the heinous crimes due to their legitimate fear that the drug cartels will retaliate against them and their families, according to a public-interest, watchdog group on Wednesday.
This fear of retaliation by reporters is leading to a situation in which Americans will be kept in the dark about the crisis along the porous and increasingly dangerous Mexican border since the Obama administration is telling Americans the border with Mexico is becoming more peaceful, according to narco-terrorism expert and drug enforcement official Donald Kubisty.
Upon receiving the latest homicide statistics that revealed over 70,000 Mexicans were killed since 2006, Mexico's new leader, President Enrique Pena Nieto, announced on Mexican television that a brand new national police agency will be fully deployed by December 2013 and will be comprised of at least 10,000 officers when they kickoff law enforcement operations.
"If the media are too scared to cover the violence and bloodshed on both sides of the southwest border, then who can we rely on for full disclosure. If Border Patrol agents speak to the media -- or anyone else for that matter -- about the true conditions, they stand a good chance of being harassed at best, or fired at worst by their superiors," said Kubisty."We certainly can’t expect the truth from the government. Remember that the nation’s Secretary of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, insists that the region is 'as secure as it has ever been.' This delusional assessment has been repeated by Napolitano over and over again in a seemingly desperate effort to make people believe it," claims Judicial Watch.According to Judicial Watch's Corruption Chronicles, without truthful and accurate information from the media to counter Obama's and his minion's version, "the public is likely to swallow the government’s less than accurate assessment.
Originally it was Mexican journalists, who were either victims of drug-cartel violence or frightened, and therefore stopped reporting crime in the region. But now, according to J.W., American journalists located in U.S. border cities allegedly followed suit and now appear to have stopped reporting on drug-related violence, at least from the scenes of the crimes and mass graves.“Mexican journalists, because of fear for their own lives and the safety of their families, are increasingly reluctant to cover drug cartels’ violence and mayhem,” according to Lee Maril, the director of the Center for Diversity and Inequality Research (CDIR), a university group that studies human diversity and social inequality. Maril recently published a piece on the topic in a Homeland Security news site.“What has occurred in recent months is that American reporters located in American border cities also have stopped reporting on drug-related violence across the border for the same reasons as their Mexican counterparts,” Maril noted.
That means no one really knows the true magnitude of the violence, though it’s apparent that the U.S. government is downplaying it. “It would seem that drug violence only stops at the Mexican border in the imaginations of Washington politicians,” Maril says, offering a recent example in Reynosa, the twin border city of McAllen in south Texas. A small local newspaper's reporter dared to publish this: “Fear and panic filled the streets as rival gunmen battled during a three-hour firefight that saw automatic weapons and grenades used.”For the most part American reporters have stopped crossing the border into cities like Reynosa because they are afraid, according to Maril. National journalists from major newspapers like the Washington Post and New York Times simply ignore major stories of drug-cartel violence like what just occurred in Reynosa, says Maril who monitors the coverage closely with his group of academic researchers.
"For years, Judicial Watch has reported on the discrepancy between reality and the administration’s line that the Mexican border is secure. The truth is that overwhelmed federal agents are increasingly attacked by heavily armed drug smugglers and the U.S. Border Patrolhas ordered officers to avoid the most crime-infested stretches because they’re too dangerous and patrolling them could result in an “international incident” of cross border shooting," officials at the Judicial Watch web site state.
The war on drugs launched by former President Felipe Calderon, who was in office from 2006 to 2012, left about 70,000 people dead in Mexico, according to the latest government figures.The Mexican news media estimate that more than 12,000 people died in violent incidents linked to organized crime gangs in 2012 alone. On Tuesday, the Mexican government released an official database of missing people. It reveals that 26,120 people disappeared between December 2006 and November 2012. That number is separate from the 70,000 deaths.
April 3rd, 2013
Top 10 Reasons To Keep Kids Off The ScreenPosted: April 3rd, 2013
There’s a commercial running for a little while now, a promotion for a new t.v. show that’s about to air. About aliens violently invading our planet, whereupon the world becomes a dystopia of overturned cars and utter panic. In it, after showing scenes of deranged-looking aliens (CGI, no less) ripping humans apart and plasma cannons blowing through architecture like micro-tsunamis, a little boy, not even looking up from his Game Boy, simply, effortlessly, and casually says to his dad, “I just want everything to go back to normal.” Not because his friends and family are one by one being targeted by homicidal space-beings (which exist) or that he’s homeless and been forced into a game of survival, he offers the emotional content as if he just said “I don’t want to eat a lollipop right now.” Doesn’t that piss you off?
There’s a reason why midgets filled Teletubby costumes or why cartoons always cast a female voice actor to play any boy character. Because a real kid would screw that up, too. Kids don’t belong in the entertainment industry for myriad reasons, many having to do with the instant diminishing of enjoyment that comes with having one on a set, having to be responsible for one. Maybe it’s just a pet peeve, but these terrible child actors speak for themselves (when they really shouldn’t). Here is a list of the top ten reasons why the kids should stay the hell out of the picture:(Warning: if you love children and every single thing they do, read no further. If you’re a mom that insists on repeatedly dragging your kid to a talent agency because you’re proud of your only true creation, stop. You’re a terrible person.)
10 LegalitiesReason: They are legal hell.Simply put, a working child under the age of 18 must adhere to labor laws, laws which require constant breaks and limited working hours in a day. Such restrictions are not conducive to a film schedule, which often consists of full 12-hour days. Then there’s the concern of subject matter, say involving sex scenes, that must adhere to age-oriented decency law. Jodie Foster, for instance, was about 13 when she played a hooker in Taxi Driver. Of course, hookers have sex, perform certain explicit duties, duties no thirteen-year-old is inherently qualified for (her much older cousin actually filled in during the suggestive scenes). Even still, this child actor must be aware of what’s going on, given the informative nature of a script, and, as such, out goes innocence. Nowadays, such sexual awareness is constantly finding its way to younger and younger ages, to where innocence hardly has much of a chance to take a first breath out the womb. At any rate, a kid can only slow down adult-oriented momentum, to where that kid shouldn’t be present at all.
9 NepotismReason: They are often cast through industry nepotism.Jayden Smith, son of the Fresh Prince, is a movie star in his father’s rite. Hell, even Will’s 9-year-old daughter has a paid-for career making terrible pop music (like father, like daughter). Even funnier, SHE looks JUST LIKE HIM. It’s true what they say, the business is ALL about connections, but rarely do those connections make for a direct funnel of talent (quite the opposite in fact). Did we need to have a karate kid remake? About as much as another actor’s kid needed to provide a supplementary income in Summer blockbuster royalties.
8 AnnoyingReason: They are always the least interesting/most annoying character in a movie made for adults.For one, an adult in the film industry just can’t seem to write a part for a child with any sense of believability, discounting John Hughes (if you call a teen a child, and you should). The most terrible example in recent years is the part of Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s chubby little sister in (500) Days of Summer. Everything about the movie is swallowable, except for her character’s posture: she continuously talks down to him as she feeds him advice and life wisdom, as if she’s seen everything but a Hello Kitty backpack and the Jonas Brothers 3D Concert. And it’s obvious that kind of condescension and general knowledgeability is ill-fitting for a girl her age, because the little girl who plays her can’t give a credible performance. More despicable yet, is how this girl has a stable film career, continuing on in a vein of ill-fittedness (as ill-fitted as her transition out of prepubescence) from role to role in movies like Kickass and Let Me In. Damn it, cast her out already, or at least in something more fitting, (perhaps a poncho?) as an extra.
7 CreepsReason: Creeps make online countdowns.It is inevitable that a female child star appearing on screen (e.g. the Olsens) is going to one day turn eighteen, and leave it to online creeps and pedophiles in training to await the day their fantasies can no longer be deemed illicit (doesn’t make them anymore okay for the middle-aged bachelors who make an unofficial hobby of flipping through high school year books…from recent years.) It doesn’t help that the oft-sheltered and impressionable screen stars are made to believe that with teenage comes public sexuality (as demonstrated by a determined Miley Cyrus, fighting her way to make the Disney Channel a platform for misbehavior, her co-star washed-up musician-dad reaping the benefits all the while).
6 SeedyReason: They often fade into a seedy oblivion.If a child star doesn’t get washed-up and vanish swiftly and quietly, after causing an unrepeatable and very short-lived sensation (e.g. Gary Coleman, Anthony Michael Hall, etc.), he usually spirals violently downhill and makes a sort of alternative career out of being a tabloid tragedy (e.g. anyone from the eighties named Corey), pursuing drugs, drunken assault charges, and a lifestyle of debauchery. Followed by the cold epiphany of being old hat, old news, old.
5 CorruptReason: It’s corrupt.It’s a common dream for a kid to say he wants to be a movie star when he grows up, but to force him into the lifestyle, with everything that comes with it, before he even gets the chance to grow up, or even enjoy the innocence of childhood, is just messed up. No kid has the wherewithal to badger agencies into finding “work” in Hollywood, as if a kid is looking to work when he needs not pay for anything himself; no, it is parents looking to exploit their children, whom they find adorable as all hell and insist others must too, so they can pay the bills without having to actually do hard work themselves. Yes, they “deserve” to get a criminal cut of that child’s earnings to “reimburse” the expended effort being professionally overbearing. Remember when Maculay Culkin’s parents robbed his future savings blind because he was in no legal position to argue? Yeah, that’s what happens when you trust your parents to do what’s in YOUR best interest.
4 EgoReason: They develop egos at an age when the super-ego should be kicking in.Michael Jackson is a prime example of why a child needs a normal childhood (though in his case his father was the one pushing him into the spotlight). The real world just doesn’t seem to exist in that kind of bubble-oriented environment. As such, real world implications don’t matter, only the implications of fame, success and the nature of a self-satisfied business.
3 TragedyReason: Tragic decline.Dakota Fanning. She’s the modern-day equivalent of Maculay Culkin. The latter starred in movies both mature and innocent in subject matter, at an age of innocence (The Good Son and Home Alone, respectively). He was a “movie star” who hadn’t even reached puberty yet, but was some kind of public darling. Likewise, Fanning has appeared in Doctor Seuss movies as well as one involving a dad with a sadistic split personality, and recently as a slutty rock star. It’s the tragic decline of innocence that comes with a preteen actor/actress growing up in the clutches of an exploitative industry, the kind that rewards shock value with an ongoing career, in lieu of a swift dissolution into obscurity (The Brady kids did it the right way, letting Alice sweep their futures in show business under the carpet.). Someone needs to stop selling movies to delusional parents who watch child stars grow up on screen as if they were raising them themselves. Who else tracks a career beginning in the womb?
2 UndeservedReason: They don’t deserve it.Envy gives birth to resentment, sure, but how many talented kids, that might have actually been raised in a militant household that placed emphasis on craft-honing, are over-looked in pivotal casting calls for the cutest one in the bunch? There are some kids that grow up in t.v.-free, Puritanical households, who read books and gain wisdom while most kids are beating their heads into pulp with video games and the stimulation orgy that is Cartoon Network’s idea of child entertainment. For instance, that British kid from the Willy Wonka remake, the one that seems a few decades too mature for his timid frame. Mostly though, it’s just flat out obnoxious for any working artist seeing some little kid get swept into fame and fortune with no teeth being cut in the process (at least none that the tooth fairy won’t compensate).
1 ActingReason: They can’t act.And there’s a reason for it: no kid has accrued the required life experience necessary to breathe life into a dynamic character, especially when characters aren’t (or shouldn’t, anyway) two-dimensional. It might make sense that a child can supply a child’s experiences to the role of a child, but even that requires a grasp on transference, and the actualization that you need to be another person through an excerpt of identity-informing lines. But more than words, a kid needs to know how to recall/supply emotions to appropriate occasions, beyond having some grip squirt tear drops in their eyes during all the “sad” scenes. In the case of a character taking on the self-assuredness and maturity of someone much older, the kid has to be able to supply a sense of origin, the disposition through which those traits can become evident. Otherwise, you just have another terrible kid actor making a joke of a serious scene and destroying the fourth wall out of clumsiness and poor casting. “I just want everything to go back to normal.”
by Ryan Thomas