Hanif on Media

News Media, New Media, Politics, Culture & Spiritual Perspectives from South Florida to Infinity.

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It’s 3 a.m., but President Obama…

June 26th · No Comments · Barack Obama, Michelle Obama

…hardly need worry about this my first post at HanifOnMedia.com.

In fact, I’m asking you all not to phone the White House crisis line to bother him about it.

After all, the 3 a.m. crisis-call campaign ad was just another of then-Sen. Hillary Clinton’s political ploys that ensured she wouldn’t win the White House.

Americans have since made it clear that we want a different kind of politics: less cynical, more collaborative, more transparent.

(So does the rest of the world. Witness Iran, June 2009.)

Similarly, one of the great failures of our contemporary news journalism has been to present reporting and commentary as a monologue from on high. In contrast, our new media technologies and applications promote mutually informative conversation for any who use their G-d given intellect. Plus it’s ubiquitously available whenever people are reading, writing or answering the crisis line. Even at 3 a.m.

Meanwhile, President Obama is delivering on the New Politics  — although it’s a shame that so many media organizations and commentators are missing it. More on that to come in my columns and posts.

The president is not perfect. We can’t expect him to be. But there’s no better contemporary political model for our nation and world: a fine family man, inspiration and example for our children and others around the planet. To borrow the lyrics of a recent popular song: What a man, what a man, what a mighty good man.

One need not just take my word for it. It’s what I’m hearing from countless other Americans, and from citizens elsewhere, who admire his intelligence, his grasp of the complex problems he inherited, his moral compass, his balance, his humanity. The sentiment is another that I anticipate will be documented here.

It became clear early in his campaign that the hand of of the Almighty is on Barack Obama — through many of you. The following depiction of that fact, which the original sender dubbed “The Photo You Won’t See On TV!!,” has been my desktop wallpaper since a kind soul forwarded it to me. (Anyone who knows, please forward info to credit the photographer.)


“The Photo” illustrates that despite all there is to be said for leadership, leaders need support. Our president himself has acknowledged that his mission is bigger than him. What’s needed is for us all to support the aspirations for human excellence that we share for our nation and world.

That’s what we’ll be doing here at HOM, with your help: sharing the information that helps bolster human excellence. Whatever informs and uplifts the human intellect and spirit. From wherever. With emphasis on savvy reporting, smart analysis, essential links, global perspective that matters where we live, an your experiences.

We’ll highlight significant items, events, individuals and organizations that have not been given enough attention elsewhere. That which is glaringly absent in the popular media, or deserving more focus.

It’s going to be interesting to see where news journalism in particular goes from here. We’ll watch and discuss how the media landscape develops. We’ll examine the vanishing veneer of journalistic objectivity. And how godless we journalists are supposed to be. (Note: not me.) Just as important, we’ll lend our voices to try to influence that development for the better.

In addition to reading and writing at all hours, I continue to be out and about and could turn up almost anywhere to chronicle activities and events that others might have wanted to attend, or simply wondered about.

Let’s make HOM a place for rational discussion about it all. For collaboration rather than domination, on the model of our president. The political essence of today’s new media age, he was collaborative before it was on most folks’ radar.

A wise person said that the best people are those who are most useful to other people. Why not the best, here?

President Barack and First Lady Michelle Obama, their parents before them, and the sacrifices of countless good people through the ages, not only have set that tone, but also raised the bar. So to paraphrase the stalwarts of the American civil rights movement, ain’t gonna let nobody turn us ’round. At least not here at HanifOnMedia.com.

I know. All this — news media, new media, politics, technology, culture, spiritual perspectives, from South Florida to Infinity, and Obama too — is a big charge. It could suggest an unfocused panoply of topics and issues. I’ll be blogging on everything at HOM, right?

Nah, it’ll only seem like it sometimes. No need to worry that we’ll stray too far afield. As a writer and editor I have a record, demonstrated over nearly three decades, of incorporating if not highlighting the “different” view. If there’s value, we’ll entertain it here. But as an experienced editor, I will edit. Beginning with myself.

All this not only is part of who I am, it’s what I do. If you share some of the sentiment, and even if you don’t, join in. As much as I have thoughts and ideas to contribute, I love fostering the conversation even more. So let’s share. I’m still listening. Sometimes, even at 3 a.m.


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