Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Corrupt Media

Glenn Greenwald has a piece today, titled “Inept Stenographers,” about journalists who not only limit themselves to writing what is given to them by the people they write about, but allow those people to review and edit the quotes before publication. One commenter added a note about how “the need to publish it fast is more important than the need to get it right,” which I think is also a point which is worthy of attention. An additional point is editorializing by selective reporting.

CBS News reports every evening on its “news” program about the civil war in Syria, reporting only from one side of course, that being the “freedom fighters.” They get it wrong more often than they get it right, and I have no doubt that they do so on purpose much of the time. Last month they were reporting a massacre as having been perpetrated by “government supported militias,” while German, British and French media were reporting that it was an ethnic massacre carried out by Sunni militias which are with the rebels.

This past week they were reporting another massacre which “could not be confirmed” but was reported “by sources which are usually reliable.” My thought at the time was that if they could not confirm it they should not report it until they were able to do so and, sure enough, it turned out that the casualties were actually the result of a pitched battle between government and rebel forces.

Our news media is hell-bent to shame our government into active intervention in Syria, preferably military intervention, and legitimate reporting is not going to do that, so…

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