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As most who I dialog with within the pubs of Oxford know, the book that had the greatest influence on my life and beliefs was Lord Of The Flies by William Golding. Whilst not specifically a commentary on the pitfalls of allowing inexperienced ‘incomplete’ humans to be given the reins, (from what I understand LOTF was more a study of how cruel the young can be), it was a heads-up to related issues. That has has been one of the guiding concepts behind this blog. Events mainly involving the British media have reinforced this view considerably.

Today, we have yet another example of how unprincipled / incomplete individuals have been given positions of ‘power’ leading to initially privacy invading consequences, and then tragedy, or as I like to call it, murder by humiliation. (It should be noted that television programming like X-Factor, Dragon’s Den and Strictly Come Dancing that profit from schadenfreude rather than the performances are little different.)

Recently I made the decision to begin publishing opinions on this blog that stood a high degree of threatening my relationship with friends, mainly in the password protected CORETEX section of this blog. (This would be no huge loss, my core friends share my values, and whilst that doesn’t mean we are right, it does at least allow us to gain strength from shared principles, support others with the same opinions and dialog with those who disagree – creating a productive discourse.)

Well, I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest people of any age must have to apply for a license before they can be put into a position of power, whether it be pirate radio, a twitter account, a blog, a local rag, a major publication or national leadership. Said license to be based on similar characteristics to say an airline pilot whose behaviour effects the lives of quite a number of people. (For the record, I would happily apply for such a license for the right to publish this blog.)

Stanley Tucci as Caesar in The Hunger Games

© 2012 Lionsgate

Broadcasting or publishing is no different than owning/using an aircraft, dog, gun or high explosive and should therefore be treated such. Said license would not of course be based on political views, but on behaviour, with guidelines driven by the rule of law, including libel, health effects and other characteristics. Breach of such license should be punishable by a lengthy jail term, not a financial penalty, else a large entity may simply write off the cost against potential profits.

Freedom of speech is one thing, freedom to do anything you want to harm another individual without warrant is another.

Many have criticised Rupert Murdoch for what his publications did. Actually, he wasn’t in the loop and his YOUNGER staff engaged in unprincipled behaviour as was made fairly clear in the Leveson enquiry when Mr. Murdoch got to speak – under oath, if I am correct?

Entities that started out with grounded or ‘cool’ ideas have gotten out of control, bringing schoolyard behavior to the masses, humiliating and insulting people in public, breaching their privacy, making false or guilty until proven innocent accusations, not to mention public tittle-tattle that belongs in the toilet.

The issue today is that such a large proportion of the global population (in particular in the West) has been dumbed down, that few focus their energies on more pertinent issues, such as attacking or humiliating large corporations who are trashing the planet or (related) politicians who have vested interest in the dirtier way.

Fight back club: Support my suggestion for a license to broadcast no matter the medium, or at the very least, significantly stricter laws on what one can say about or do to other people without their prior permission and in the event of an accusation, a significan amount of legally binding proof.

Update: Sad to learn that a dignified broadcaster and all round (no pun intended!) super guy, Sir Patrick Moore has passed away. What a contrast between him and those this post is mainly about. And how much better our world would be if young people were able to watch his program rather than the trash that is shown during the healthier earlier hours of the day.


Written by Oflife

December 7, 2012 at 10:12 pm

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