Democracy Now! (always worth watching, as Marcia says). You don't want to miss any of it but if you're concerned with the state of the mainstream media, pay close attention to
the interview with Laurie Garrett.
Headlines for March 14, 2005
- Army Report Details Killing of Detainees in Afghan Jail
- Report: Israel Draws Up Plans to Attack Iran
- Syria Pulls Some Troops From Lebanon; Protests Continue
- China Unanimously Passes Anti-Secession Taiwan Law
- Judge Bars Transfer of 13 Guantanamo Detainees
- Disabled Veterans Boo & Jeer GOP Lawmakers
- Systematic Looting Described at Iraq Weapons Plant
- Four Activists Face Jail For Pouring Blood At Recruiting Station
Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalist Laurie Garrett: "When You See News As a Product...It's Impossible To Really Serve Democracy"
We speak with Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Laurie Garrett, who resigned from Newsday and ripped the paper's parent company, the Tribune Company, for putting profit over quality journalism. Garrett says, “If you trim back your staff, if you trim back your costs, and you put out a lower quality product, your stock value goes up. All across the news industry, we have seen this same phenomenon."
State Propaganda: How Government Agencies Produce Hundreds of Pre-Packaged TV Segments the Media Runs as News
From the State Department to Agriculture to the Transportation Security Administration, federal agencies under the Bush administration have been producing hundreds of pre-packaged TV segments that have been broadcast on local stations as real news. We speak with John Stauber of PR Watch, which has been tracking the rise of government and corporate-produced news for years.
Pat e-mails noting Matthew Rothschild's "Khalilzad and the Neocon Cabal:"
It's old home week for the alums of the Project of a New American Century.
First, John Bolton gets the nod for U.S. ambassador to the UN. (See "John Bolton, Neoconman.")Then, Bush calls in Zalmay Khalilzad from the Afghan bullpen to start hurling from Baghdad.
Both come out of the Project for a New American Century.
Both come out of the neocon orbit of Paul Wolfowitz.
Both are protégés of Dick Cheney, whose filthy fingerprints are on almost every foreign policy move by Bush these days.
Like Cheney and Bush, and Condoleezza Rice, for that matter, Khalilzad has ties to the oil industry.
During the mid to late 1990s, he was on Unocal's payroll. "As an adviser for Unocal, Khalilzad drew up a risk analysis of a proposed gas pipeline from the former Soviet republic of Turkmenistan across Afghanistan and Pakistan to the Indian Ocean," noted corpwatch.org. "He participated in talks between the oil company and Taliban officials in 1997, which were aimed at implementing a 1995 agreement to build the pipeline across western Afghanistan."
That still may be a dream of his.
Speaking at--where else?--the American Enterprise Institute on March 8, he talked about recreating "the historic Afghan land bridge that will establish a single economic zone composed of Central Asia, South Asia, and Southwest Asia."
Markus notes that Jude at Iddybuddy "is discussing the John Edwards rumors:"
The Kerry-Edwards campaign pulled out of Missouri just three weeks before last year's election. John Edwards is being seen as making a thinly veiled criticism of ex-running mate John Kerry by stating that it wasn't his decision. A former Kerry strategist told NBC that campaign officials worked overtime to make sure all key players were on board when decisions to pull out of states were made. An Edwards aide insisted that it didn't work that way.
During the mid to late 1990s, he was on Unocal's payroll. "As an adviser for Unocal, Khalilzad drew up a risk analysis of a proposed gas pipeline from the former Soviet republic of Turkmenistan across Afghanistan and Pakistan to the Indian Ocean," noted corpwatch.org. "He participated in talks between the oil company and Taliban officials in 1997, which were aimed at implementing a 1995 agreement to build the pipeline across western Afghanistan."That still may be a dream of his. Speaking at--where else?--the American Enterprise Institute on March 8, he talked about recreating "the historic Afghan land bridge that will establish a single economic zone composed of Central Asia, South Asia, and Southwest Asia."
Over at The Daily Howler, Bob Somerby is dealing with a number of items today:
First: On the paper’s op-ed page, "liberal" pundit William Raspberry is making his latest confession. I got suckered by Alan Greenspan, the credulous Post liberal says. At long last, Raspberry says that Greenspan "does appear to be acting more as apologist for the Bush administration than as wise and independent elder." But the fiery liberal was slow to suspect, as he himself relates:
RASPBERRY (3/14/05): Maybe I should have suspected a shift in Greenspan's role early in George W. Bush's first term, when the longtime chairman's support of the president's proposal for a massive tax cut for the richest Americans virtually ensured its passage. But the Treasury was enjoying a heady surplus at the time, and I thought Greenspan was being merely pragmatic when he said we could afford to cut taxes and continue the debt reduction scheme initiated by Bush's predecessor, Bill Clinton.
According to eighth-grade civics texts, journalists are supposed to "suspect" the motives of big power brokers. But Raspberry -- the Post’s idea of a fiery liberal -- didn't suspect Greenspan's motives when he made his odd defense of Bush's tax cuts back. Instead, the Razz took Greenspan at his word—just as he later did when Colin Powell made that crucial speech to the UN in March 2003. At the time, Raspberry rushed to affirm Powell's brilliance (quotes below) -- a fact the liberal pundit obfuscates in this morning’s column:
RASPBERRY (3/14/05): Let me be clear: I was personally disappointed when former secretary of state Colin Powell used suspect evidence to back his boss's desire to launch a war against Iraq. But I understand that secretaries of state are members of administrations. They may argue against a policy behind closed doors. But once the president has decided, they are expected not to go public with their independent notions to the contrary.
"Let me be clear," Raspberry writes -- and then, he smudges what actually happened. In real time, Raspberry didn't show any sign of "understand[ing] that secretaries of state" may pimp a view they don't really believe. Nor did it seem to enter his head that Powell might be using "suspect evidence." Instead, Raspberry did hand-stands in praise of Powell. In real time, here's how he began his column about Powell's "tour de force performance before the U.N. Security Council:"
RASPBERRY (2/10/03): It was a spectacular performance, and by the time Colin Powell was finished, I was a complete convert.
Now that's a fiery Post liberal! In real time, Raspberry didn't question a single word Powell said -- on the contrary, he vouched for him totally.
Somerby's also addressing press coverage of Kenneth Starr and Sally Quinn (among other things). Worth reading.