I spotted this picture on The Atlantic’s FB wall:Image

It also had a caption: “A reminder that you should read more than one newspaper—even when you’re using an iPad.”

“So where’s the news?” I asked myself.

Well, the news is that it was a reader who noticed this!
I was expecting, my mistake – I was presumptuous, a self serving sermon about modern era ‘militant journalism’ yet it was a glimmer of hope: people have started to think with their own heads.

And then I read some comments on the FB page. Quite a lot of people were not only taking sides – perfectly acceptable, everybody is entitled to have an opinion – but actually defending or defaming particular newspapers.

My conclusion? It seems there are still too many people who trust “their newspaper” while rejecting all the others. AND that too many journalists/owners continue to misuse this trust.

I started this post with “You can lead a horse to water but…” Some of you might get offended that I compare readers with horses, or, slightly better, with ‘stubborn’ horses who drink only when they feel the need. Some others might remark that horses are less gullible than some people. There is some truth in all these… but I had something else in my mind.

Good horse breeders never take their horses to water when there is no real need and certainly they don’t force anything down the throat of healthy animals. So why is this bullshit going on? I understand differences of opinion but crass manipulation is like purposefully damaging your herd!
Besides that, I know that horses are intelligent animals. OK, nowadays manipulation techniques are indeed very powerful but if a sizable – and growing – portion of the “herd” is able to see through them how come too many still refuse to have a close look at what is going on?

Simultaneously I have the distinct impression that the ‘manipulators’ consider that their habitat is so well protected from the rest of the world that they can do whatever they please, without any fear for the consequences their  acts might have. Are they really that thick, that disconnected from the hard realities of this world or are they delusional?

Well, no horse starts to drink before feeling thirsty!

Yes but we’re not horses! “Readers” and “writers”, we belong to the same species and inhabit the same Earth. Together.

For a funnier side of this subject you might try figuring out what really happened here.