Teaser 188: Faux News

It was back to reality when we returned. Drake shared some papers he printed from web pages, transcripts of interviews or articles with Nancy's participation in my absence, my defacto defender. I couldn't believe some of the shit they were dredging from the past and Nancy's responses were always brilliant. She even tangled with one of the Faux News people, well known for hosting a show which often descended into shouting matches, the host, of course, doing most of the shouting. This was the state of civil discussion as presented by the “Noise” people. The credo of the Noise people is: if we can't defeat them with logic, rationality, and reason, beat them over the head by a louder noise through constant roaring interruption; that way, only our view is heard. Thus, they are the Noise people. They were a new breed of human, mutated through self-indulgence and wide-eyed ignorance. They were pretty boys and girls, talking heads and second-level political hacks who couldn't reach the top in that arena so they moved into a television studio where they could scream at uncontrollable levels and stir up the confounded and confused whose blood was already near boiling. Such a worthy goal to which to aspire. They had a very strong following because many dinner table discussions had degenerated to this level for decades. It was a brand of familiar sights and sounds. You can hear the confounded and confused cranking the squeaky gears as they observe, “They're just like Mom and Dad. I miss them.” While Mom would often go to bed at night bruised and beaten and replace the dishware set every other year was only a coincidence.

When Nancy returned my call I asked, “So, my love, have you been attending school for your law degree?”

Nancy laughed. At least she still had a sense of humor. I couldn't always count on it with Nancy. “This was never part of my job description at the House, Gregory, serving as one of our favorite author's agent, manager or publicity hound.”

“You are in the wrong line of work, Nancy.”

“You need to get back in the boxing ring, Gregory. You're taking a beating and you're not even in the ring to defend yourself.”

“I met a reporter from the BBC before I left Mali. Ever hear of Roland Hodges?”

“He's new, but he already has a reputation for digging into the truth. Let me think...he's about twenty-six but began his investigative reporting while he was a young under-classman at Oxford. He exposed a rather sordid relationship between one of their professors and a communications company and documented it very thoroughly. It led to a censure from the university but the professor is still there.”

“What do you expect? The new development in modern society, which is as old as civilization itself, is the higher up you go, the less you're held accountable. Like I said, it's not new.”

“All true, Gregory. Hodges does have respect as honest, fair and hard-working. The most persistent rumor about him is he has a deep-seated personal disdain for dodging by those who should be held accountable. He might be a good fit for you.”

“He wanted to interview me then but I didn't have the time so I offered to meet with him soon. I asked him what he thought I was doing in Africa, since it's how he started it. What do you think he said, Nancy?”

“No idea.”

“He said I was putting myself in harm's way.”

“And you're not, Gregory?”

“I like him, Nancy. I'm gonna meet with him and when we talk about the meeting, I'll ask him to bring along any and all of these dredges from the past and I'll explain each one. I can't believe how petty the Faux News people can be, but I find it so hypocritical. I read your tangle with Fiction boy, Nancy. He attacks me on integrity? The man whose picture next to the definition of sexual harassment is used to provide effective visual evidence is going to attack me on integrity? He doesn't know what the word means. Although, to be fair and balanced, he does understand the word karma.”

- Just Desserts, Segment Twenty-ThreeA Magnet’s Attraction” by Gregory R. Schussele, © 2021

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