Sunday, June 01, 2008

What Happens When A Free, Courageous Press Isn't

From Glenn Greenwald at Corporate executives forced pro-Bush, pro-war narrative

Jessica Yellin -- currently a CNN correspondent who covered the White House for ABC News and MSNBC in 2002 and 2003 -- was on with Anderson Cooper last night discussing Scott McClellan's book, and made one of the most significant admissions heard on television in quite some time:

JESSICA YELLIN, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I think the press corps dropped the ball at the beginning. When the lead-up to the war began, the press corps was under enormous pressure from corporate executives, frankly, to make sure that this was a war that was presented in a way that was consistent with the patriotic fever in the nation and the president's high approval ratings.
Will these same Executives now personally apologize to the families of the slain?
This is the most vital point: this is not a matter of mere historical interest. This is not about how the media operated five years ago during an aberrational time in our history. This is about how they functioned then and how they function now. The same people who did all of this still run these media organizations and it's the same coddled, made-up personalities still playing the role of "journalist." Clearly, if these network media stars think they did nothing wrong in the run-up to the war and in their coverage of the Bush administration -- and they don't -- then it's only logical to conclude that they still do the same things and will do the same things in the future.

... As people like Jessica Yellin, Katie Couric, Phil Donahue and Scott McClellan are making clear, these media outlets are controlled propaganda arms of the Government, of the political establishment generally. For many people, that isn't a new revelation, but the fact that it's becoming clearer by the day -- from unimpeachable sources on the inside -- is nonetheless quite significant.
I would also recommend Bill Moyer's brilliant documentary, Buying the War.

Edward R. Morrow said this in 1955.

"We are currently wealthy, fat, comfortable, and complacent, We have currently a built-in allergy to unpleasant or disturbing information. Our mass media reflect this. But unless we get up off our fat surpluses and recognize that television in the main is being used to distract, delude, amuse, and insulate us, then television and those who finance it, those who look at it, and those who work at it, may see a totally different picture too late."


Youtube video from the film Good Night and Good Luck

Here is another
review. Both have good points to make.

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