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media

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Some things only flow one way


Like Bushco loyalty. I think the media is learning a lesson in that.

I’m not really sure why the media decided to hook themselves to the Bush wagon in the run up to the 2000 election - maybe they were bored with Gore (or figured he wouldn’t provide nearly as much material as Bush); maybe they were leaning over backwards to show that they really weren’t the “Liberal media”. Whatever the reason, many seem to have decided to take a pass on real reporting, even before they entered into their post-9/11 prostration. After 9/11… gah! unspeakable.

Still, even then there were some reporters who were going to do their jobs and hold power accountable, even if their corporate bosses weren’t too happy about it. Some, such as the New York Times, were perfectly willing to not only acquiesce to publishing total spin, through Judy Miller, but acceded to White House requests that they withhold stories that detailed this administrations illegal operations. (An exception to supine corporate bosses would be the Knight-Ridder corp - one of the few media organizations that pretty consistently did real investigative reporting and asked questions in the run-up to the war - but gosh, darn, for some reason it all of a sudden became imperative to the stockholders that this media organization be sold and broken up. And so it was.)

I have a feeling that some of this was in the form of an attempted inoculation… no doubt the press corps, more than most, knew the type of people who are inhabiting the White House. The stories that have made it through - on Abu Ghraib tortures, “renditions”, illegal wiretapping, excessive secrecy, corruption and more, are appalling. One can’t help but wonder what things are going on that we don’t yet know about. What ever it is… the Bush admin really, really doesn’t want us to find out.

So what, in the land of the free and the home of the brave, do you do when the press that you thought you had cowed and compliant, that knew their place, decides to start digging and keep digging?

Why, you threaten to prosecute them as spies, of course, under the Espionage Law.

Adam Liptak reports, in The New York Times:

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