There’s a new kind of “journalism” being conducted in our country today.
It has little to do with the kind of reporting and editing I was trained for 30 to 35 years ago.
For instance, this new “journalism” is often funded by wealthy foundations and underwriters who have some kind of ideological ax to grind.
It also doesn’t require those conducting it to interview subjects of the investigations.
It doesn’t require any kind of balance or truth-seeking whatsoever.
In fact, it relies instead on the most vicious kind of propaganda techniques, name-calling and guilt-by-association (or even non-association) imaginable.
A prime example of this kind of pseudo-journalism can be found here – subsidized by the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation and directed by the John Jay College on Media, Crime and Justice.
In this amazing smear, you will find my news organization, WorldNetDaily, characterized as a terrorist organization.
What has WND done to warrant such a label?
These are good questions. I’m still trying to figure it out.
What is clear from the very poorly crafted piece of prose is that WND is somehow linked with an organization called the “Army of God.” Given that I have not heretofore ever heard of the “Army of God,” this was quite a surprise to me, as the founder, editor and chief executive officer of WND.
Nevertheless, the case being made here is that WND is some kind of anti-abortion terrorist organization. (See the second chart on the linked story if you doubt what I am saying. It’s called “Network of Anti-Abortion Domestic Terrorists.”)
It follows a “nearly” incomprehensible paragraph that reads: “Nearly ideologically-driven ‘anti-abortion terrorist cells’ conducted nearly 50 percent of all domestic terrorist activity in 1984 and 1985. Groups like the Army of God, Lambs of Christ, Missionaries for the Preborn and the various Operation Rescue splinter groups created from internecine power struggles, all espouse the violent rhetoric, paleo-conservative theocracy and hyper-militancy typically used to describe armed anti-federalist militias and racist groups. And, like other terrorist groups, they are highly networked.”
The Guggenheim Foundation, by the way, says it gives grants to “scholarly research.” Apparently “truth” and clear and concise writing are not among the criteria for such grant-making largesse.
How does one respond to being labeled a “terrorist” – or part of a “terrorist network”?
Maybe you have a suggestion.
Ironically, the director of this project, Joe Domanick, is someone who actually reported for me many years ago when I served as executive news editor of the Los Angeles Herald Examiner. Somehow, over the last 30 years, he apparently lost his moorings and any semblance of what constitutes responsible journalism.
I fear, however, that this kind of raw sewage is what will increasingly pass for journalism in the years to come – as the traditional media find it more difficult to pay for traditional reporting and ideologically driven billionaires step in to pay activists to write extremist commentary pieces and call them “investigative reporting.”
It’s called “public journalism.”
It’s a bad idea. It ought to be called “bastard journalism.”
It’s the exclusive domain of the extremist left.
Ironically, it is the anti-capitalist left that gets all the corporate funding, all the foundation grants. Isn’t that ironic? The capitalists are still selling the Communists and socialists the rope that will be used to hang them, as Lenin once observed they would.
But just for the record, in case anyone is interested, WND and I have no connection to terrorism – either domestic or foreign. We’ve never spoken to or heard of the “Army of God.” But none of that matters to the pseudo-journalistic terrorists who assemble mudslinging smears like this. Truth is not even a concept they believe exists – so why worry about it?
That’s a taste of the sad state of what passes for journalism today.
Amazing! You can’t even appreciate it unless you’ve been a victim of it, tarred by its broad, sweeping and hyperbolic brushes of falsehood.