Watching TVA: What Will The MSM Do?

by Steve Finefrock – [scriptwriter]

Such a lovely gift on Christmas Eve, as the most shining trophy of FDR’s confiscatory governmental scheming dumped millions of tons of industrial sludge upon its downstream neighbors. A coal plant for the Tennessee Valley Authority – TVA – kept years’ worth of accumulating grime and slime in a holding pond, which roared downsteam upon folks and fish when the faulty dam gave way. A mini Johnstown Flood. Only there is a difference, or two actually: no one was killed in this catastrophe, and the guilty organization is not corporate, but gummint.

You know what gummint is – a mispronunciation of ‘government’ by its detractors. Not that government is a target for full destruction, by conservatives, but government most certainly has gotten too big for its britches, and for tolerable taxation levels. TVA is a remnant of gummint under FDR, the man who put Japanese-American citizens in concentration camps, put Supreme Court justices on notice lest they oppose his schemes, and pushed aside all private electric utility development in the South via TVA policies as a monopoly via gummint.

An interesting note only recently discovered is that true story behind FDR’s opponent in 1940, the GOP-nominee Wendell Wilkie. Chris Matthews’ tingly leg expressions noted the ‘team of rivals’ character of Obama The One [OTO] decisions on his cabinet, observing that the republican nominee against FDR had cooperated after the election in a bi-partisan team scheme to support the war effort. Chris may be too ignorant to know this newly-discovered fact – after all, so was I – but before and after that odd nomination, Wilkie was a lifelong DEMOCRAT.

Wilkie’s’ ardent, public criticism of FDR’s TVA derived from Wilkie being an electric utility executive whose organization was quite effectively working toward providing electric service to the South. But FDR wanted political credit to keep his southern racist allies pleased with his administration, so the gummint pushed Wilkie and other utility leaders out of the picture. His loud dissent caught the attention of some Manhattan republicans, and voila – a ‘draft Wilkie’ movement found traction and the GOP nominated him as their standard bearer.

Now we see Wilkie’s Revenge: the TVA has given sludge and grunge to its citizen-customers. How will the Mainstream Media – MSM – treat this Southern Exxon Valdez event?

As gummint is the joy of our new tingly-legged politicians and journalists, the TVA will be a benchmark of their skepticism and anger when po-folk are hurt by massive institutional indifference and incompetence. And also worth watching is how our GOPster ‘leaders’ effectively point to this example of how FDR wasn’t such a fine feller after all. If the Bridge to Nowhere was such an effective club for the left – and sometime by some of our less loyal legions on the right – then TVA sludge should lead to a sludge-fest in the halls of political battle royale.

Will the MSM take to heart its supposed concerns, when the TVA is the target of those who write the supposed ‘first draft of history’? Will the most massive example of FDR’s massive expansion of gummint be as much a target as was Exxon when that oil spill hit Prince William Sound in 1990? Will this Superfund site get the telescopic sight focused on it by the MSM, or by the GOP leaders?

‘Tis too soon to tell – the holiday hiatus will keep the media quiet, regardless of their bias. But come January 3rd, will this bit o’ gummint miscreant indifference and incompetence become a salient symbol to serve as a bludgeon against OTO’s desires to be the Next FDR, to give us a New New Deal?

Will president-elect OTO flyover the TVA sludge scene? Or wade into its muck to prove his concern is superior to Dubya’s for Katrina victims? The scale of the two events is different, of course, but also you know well and fully that if this were a sludge-pile brought you by a GOP program – especially if it were attached to Halliburton or Cheney – that it would be the center-ring enthusiastic coverage event of the MSM and Chris Matthews, et al.

I’m getting a tingly feeling up my leg, that maybe our GOPsters will be effective, if subtle, in making the TVA sludge pile into a pile-driver to compel Americans to think twice about a very old new deal scheme.

I can hope, can’t I? ExileStreet

copyright 2008 Steve Finefrock Finefrock is founder of Hollywood Forum, a speaker-bureau and panel-discussion vehicle to “Bring the Potomac to the Palisades” on issues that overlap politics and culture with the Hollywood film-TV influence on such national concerns. His scripts have addressed politics [including a TV series pilot/bible package about state political combat, called “A State of the Union”], hazardous materials [from twelve years in emergency management, including six years managing FEMA’s Superfund curriculum for hazmat], terrorism, equestrian reincarnation, serial murderer killing journalists in the nation’s capitol, and fantasy about time-wasters. Finefrock is proprietor of PhoneBooth: The Smallest Space in Hollywood…

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