Bill Moyers Calls for Vigilant, Independent Press
And in TV news, Bill Moyers is retiring tonight from his show Now on PBS. Over the past three decades, Moyers has won over thirty Emmys and produced a string of groundbreaking documentaries. Upon his retirement from Now, Moyers told the Associated Press, "I'm going out telling the story that I think is the biggest story of our time: how the right-wing media has become a partisan propaganda arm of the Republican National Committee." He went on to say, "We have an ideological press that's interested in the election of Republicans, and a mainstream press that's interested in the bottom line. Therefore, we don't have a vigilant, independent press whose interest is the American people."
Some PBS stations air Now on Saturday or Sunday, so check your own listings (http://www.pbs.org/). Last chance to see Now with Bill Moyers with Moyers at the helm. (It will continue as a half hour show anchored by David Brancaccio.)
What will Moyers' last show focus on? From PBS's web site:
Bill Moyers looks inside the right-wing media machine that the conservative NEW YORK TIMES columnist David Brooks called a "dazzlingly efficient ideology delivery system." The program examines how a vast echo chamber that is admittedly partisan and powerfully successful delivers information Â and misinformation Â with more regard for propaganda than fact. Founding father to the conservative movement, Richard Viguerie tells Moyers, ÂThatÂs what journalism is, Bill. ItÂs all just opinion. Just opinion.Â
Since 9/11 and the start of the war on terror, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has been one of the leading voices in the fight for the protection of civil liberties. They have taken on cases when no one else would touch them, cases involving foreign nationals living in our country whose rights were violated in the early round-ups post 9/11, or cases where law enforcement infiltrated groups of U.S. nationals in our soil, only because they disagreed with our government's policies. Most recently they have been in the news for making public a series "of U.S. Navy documents that reveal that abuse and even torture of detainees by U.S. Marines in Iraq was widespread." Bill Moyers speaks with Anthony Romero, executive director of the ACLU, who will talk about life amidst an ongoing war on terror and the delicate balance between protecting civil liberties and national security (http://www.pbs.org/now/thisweek/index.html).
From The Nation:
Week after week, NOW has offered consistently bold and revealing examinations of issues ranging from the threat to environmental protections posed by international trade agreements, to the damage done to basic liberties by the Patriot Act, to the abuses of politics by special interests. Moyers, who is 70 and wants to turn his attention to writing, has every reason to be proud as he prepares for his last broadcast on December 17. At a time when TV networks--including PBS--were bowing to commercial and ideological pressures that were antithetical to journalism, Moyers created a program that many viewers recognized as the only reason to turn on the TV in the Bush era (http://www.thenation.com/doc.mhtml?i=20041227&s=editors2).
Matthew Rothchild weighs in on social security:
At Bush's so-called economic summit, which was more like a valley, he did what he does best: instill fear about a false threat.
And he made clear who his constituency is: the financial markets.
Even before the gathering of rightwing economists began, Bush set the tone in his weekend radio address when he said, "The system is headed toward bankruptcy down the road. If we do not act soon, Social Security will not be there for our children and grandchildren" (http://www.progressive.org/webex04/wx1217a04.html).
Yes, (as Kara and Ben have pointed out) Paul Krugman is dealing with social security in today's NY Times' op-ed and in addition to that, you can check out The Daily Howler today http://www.dailyhowler.com/dh121704.shtml.
Shirley has pointed out that a blog entry from Thursday has vanished. I don't know what happened or where it is. I'll add it right after this and then later tonight try to edit it into Thursday (unless it reappears on it's own between now and tonight).
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