"The press is overstepping in every direction the obvious bounds of
propriety and of decency. Gossip is no longer the resource of the idle
and of the vicious, but has become a trade, which is pursued with
industry as well as effrontery." Law professor Louis Brandeis and
businessman Samuel Warren wrote that indictment in the Harvard Law
Review in December 1890. Brandeis went on to become one of the
heavyweights of the Supreme Court before a university assumed his name.
The second column I wrote for WorldNetDaily was read January 12,
1998. The headline was "Selective reporting and the state of the
Advertisement - story continues below
I started with an Aubrey T. DeVera quote, "prejudice, which sees what
it pleases, cannot see what is plain." I asked then, as I do now,
despite the obvious liberal bias of the mainstream media (becoming more
and more obvious even to the casual observer), when and how will either
embarrassment or territorial imperative compel the dominant media to
return to the journalistic foundation of actually reporting Who, What,
Where, When rather than obfuscating the Why and the How, and/or
committing mortal sins of omission?
The Columbia Journalism Review recently noted, "The vocabulary of
criticism has ascended from the polite cough to outright condemnation.
The press is widely charged with being malicious, negative,
self-serving, mean, vulgar, shameless, biased, vindictive, belligerent,
aggressive, disingenuous, and vicious. The complaints are as diverse as
the critics: intrusion, inaccuracy, refusal to admit or correct error;
under-representation of minorities; neglect of the community by faceless
conglomerates; incitement to hate, mostly on radio; the 'tabloidization'
of news, notably on television since TV news became a profit center; the
dramatization of the trivial half-truth at the expense of
enlightenment." Excuse me! The "vocabulary of criticism" is growing in
proportion to the egregiousness of the malfeasance, manipulation, and
propaganda, which is peddled as journalism.
Today's examples are different (albeit cumulative) to the litany I
included over two years ago, but the nexus of the sin is constant.
- The Million-Mom March will have concluded by the time you
read this. Donna Dees Thomases (hereinafter referred to as DDT) has
been profiled, showcased, and shake and baked into celebrity. She has
been craftily positioned as just "A New Jersey Mom." Just a Jane Doe
soccer mom trying to do something to stem the tide of gun violence.
Paul Harvey could have a field day telling you "The Rest of the Story."
None of the mainstream co-conspirators, not ABC, CBS, NBC, or CNN have
either discovered, or chosen to report the close, symbiotic ties DDT has
with the Clinton regime. I can't recall any mention of Mother DDT
having worked for either CBS or NBC ... she did. A listener to my radio
talk show asked in a recent email, "... was this a purposeful omission
meant to help disguise the fact that she is a democrat activist insider,
or was it the result of journalistic laziness?" The answer is in the
- The Media Research Center has a great special report by Geoffrey
Dickens who in addition to having the good grace and class to spell his
name properly, offers a superb statistical analysis of "How the Network
News Media are Spinning the Gun Control Debate."
You will note a startling consistency to the percentage of pro-gun
versus anti-gun stories. In fact the combined study (covering 4 years)
shows 514 anti-gun stories (57 percent), 46 pro-gun stories (5 percent),
and 337 neutral stories (38 percent) arguably intended to maintain the
fiction of objectivity.
- Col. Dave Hughes, West Point grad and subsequently West Point
instructor reports that a captain on the West Point faculty thought the
Associated Press story about the alleged "No Gun Ri" massacres in Korea
was wrong. So this young officer did what presumably any high paid
journalist could do, and he investigated. The AP report regarding No
Gun Ri vilified 70-year old men who deserved better. Reporters
interviewed over 150 members of the 7th Cavalry Division. All but three
reported the alleged incident never happened. The three who "confessed"
to machine gunning civilians were never at No Gun Ri when the incident
was alleged to have happened. Associated Press won a Pulitzer Prize for
this b.s. story. Tom Brokaw of NBC flew the mentally ill Ed Daily to
Korea for a tearful mea culpa photo opportunity. Read more.
Advertisement - story continues below
I often complain about those people who don't want to be
confused with facts, which contradict their preconceived opinions. Folks
incorrectly assume that the warm, smiling demographically focused
grouped mainstream media is reporting objectively. They are NOT. I
have written at some length about the indictments, jail sentences, and
the ever popular game of "Name the unindicted conspirator" (second in
popularity only to "Name the indicted Cabinet member").
I once asked if the presumed keepers of the fourth estate would ever
acknowledge their responsibility and report a full and complete journal
of the facts, and permit we the people the luxury of making our own
fully informed decisions.
The "New Media" may offer us a new beginning ... or at least the
opportunity to counterbalance the behemoth disinformation/misinformation
campaigns masquerading as journalism. No "New Media" is not a panacea
for the cancer eating away at reportage. We have our warts and
blemishes too. The ease of dissemination of information on line is both
a blessing and a curse. Just because you read something in a newsgroup
or in a forwarded message doesn't make it any more true and accurate
than if you see or hear it from Tom Brokaw, Peter Jennings or Dan
New Media offers the "opportunity" to report and disseminate
information, which has become bridled, hobbled, restricted and/or
manipulated by the government-media cabal. We have an extraordinary
opportunity I pray we do not squander or misuse.
Ambrose Bierce said, "Politics is the conduct of public affairs for
private advantage. This current regime has elevated that axiom to an
art form. Sadly, they have successfully co-opted most of the mainstream
media as co-conspirators. I have continued to hope and pray (in vain)
that journalism has not regressed to the point where it has been reduced
to merely reporting selective facts for private advantage.