Thursday, May 29, 2008

Corporate owners forced media mouthpieces to promote White House lies

By Libby

I'm still on a heavy course of medication for the next couple of days so I've been laying low today. I have a couple of semi-coherent posts up at The Detroit News, one of which I'll expand here a little on Scottie McLellan's book.

The book itself is, as I said last night, too little, too late and is merely an attempt to distance himself from his own culpability in lying us into the occupation. John Cole has the video from an interview on MSNBC and a related item on group think that explains why even today, McLellan calls the administration misguided rather than willfully malfeasant. John also flags a timeless piece from 2005 on how these cretins reduced our international standing to "Not As Bad As" Stalin. A rather pathetically low bar from our glory days as leaders of human rights. Taken as a whole, it's a dramatically sad statement on how far into the gutter this White House has dragged us, against our will, under a false flag of freedom.

In any event, far more interesting than McLellan's sorry excuse for an expose, is the blowback it's produced among the media. Glenn Greenwald covers that story today at some length with testimonials from those in the media who paid the price for voicing skepticism about the erroneous claims prior to the invasion of Iraq and the major voices of protest that were ignored in the cheerleading during the run-up to this disaster.

Even more precious are the outraged howlings of the blithering, overpaid and always wrong punditry who insist they weren't mere stenographers for the White House party line. As Glenn reports:
Network executives obviously know that these revelations are quite threatening to their brand. Yesterday, they wheeled out their full stable of multi-millionaire corporate stars who play the role of authoritative journalists on the TV to join with their White House allies in mocking and deriding McClellan's claims. One media star after the next -- Tom Brokaw, David Gregory, Charlie Gibson and Brian Williams, Tim Russert, Wolf Blitzer -- materialized in sync to insist that nothing could be more absurd than the suggestion that they are "deferential, complicit enablers" in government propaganda.

I have little doubt that they would be telling the truth if they denied what Yellin reported last night. People like Williams, Gibson and Gregory don't need to be told to refrain from reporting critically about the war and the White House because challenging Government claims isn't what they do. And amazingly, they admitted that explicitly yesterday. Gibson and Gregory both invoked the cliched excuse of the low-level bureaucrat using almost identical language: exposing government lies "is not our job."
I guess on some level that is now true. Once our government gave six rich guys control of virtually the whole media, their job description changed to little more than trained monkeys banging their tin cups for the corporate bottom line. But there was time when it was not only their job, it was the defining mission of a formerly respected profession.

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Blogger expatbrian said...

I don't put any stock in this story one way or the other. It's not like, oh wow, what a revelation! Bush lied to us and followed his own maniacal agenda.

Hey, we've known that for years and let it continue. This is old, ho hum news.

The one part that is a laugh is McClellan trying to pass himself off as an innocent victim of misinformation just like the rest of us.
I just have a sneaking suspicion, and hey, call me crazy, but I gotta believe that if I was the guy IN the oval office WHEN these issues were being discussed, LISTENING to what was going on and had even half a brain, I might have REALIZED then that something was amiss. But that's just me. And I'm stupid. McClellan is much smarter than me. He's so smart he was Bush's press secretary. Means he had to be just as smart as Perino. And I'm sure you all agree that's damn smart.

6:25:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

It's so obviously an attempt to cash in when he's got nothing to lose, it makes me want to vomit with disgust.

5:03:00 PM  

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