Western reporting on Iran is an example of our fascinating but increasingly tenuous connection to reality. Overall, media coverage is now so ritualized, restricted by convention and laden with hidden assumptions that it increasingly resembles Japanese classical drama or Balinese shadow-puppetry. A century from now, when scholars sift through the ashes of our civilization, they’re in for lots of fun.
In brief, much of what’s reported as happening usually isn’t, what’s happening and is reported usually doesn’t matter much, and what is missed altogether would usually be helpful for us to know. The reason is partly ideological; by the time that reporters peer through the umpteen dusty lenses of our Progressive values, and impose them on other cultures and systems, we can’t see clearly enough to find the lavatory much less puzzle out how to run a vast empire. Let’s focus on the Iran. [Read more...]