YOU DON’T HAVE TO GIVE A SHIT WHAT SOMEBODY IN POWER TELLS YOU:
“I regret any error that ever got into the paper, but from where I sat, there was a total congruence — everything was coalescing around one message,” he said, noting that The Times was far from alone in its reporting. “I was suspicious, and perhaps I should have been more aggressive in pursuing that suspicion.”
Yes, you should have, given that being suspicious of what people in power say is YOUR ENTIRE GODDAMN JOB. You are not there for anything else. It’s one thing to report the message that government officials are putting out. It’s another to act like that message makes you helpless to say anything about it. God, what a morally bankrupt, cowardly little asshole. “Ooh, this guy said a thing, from a very big podium, which made it hard for me to open my mouth and use words to ask questions, because of magic and sorcery.” What in the fuck were you, oh great editor of the New York Times, afraid of?
And what COULD you have been afraid of that would have been worse than helping to prop up a war that left hundreds of thousands of people dead AND TURNED OUT TO BE BULLSHIT?
3 thoughts on “This Is Exactly the Problem”
It’s credited to Bill Walton, but I think it’s older than that: When everyone thinks the same thing, no one’s thinking very much. It’s also instructive to remember the culture around the White House during the Bush administration: First Amendment zones kettling dissenters away from President Bush’s appearances; Ari Fleischer ominously informing Bennett Roth in 2001 that his question had been “noted in the building” before not answering that question; access summarily cut off for reporters and organizations that got too nosey about administration goings-on; male prostitute Jeff Gannon/Jim Guckert getting the plum seat at the morning pressers, supplanting Helen Thomas; and on and on. And on.
And the stalwart bulldogs of the Fourth Estate swallowed it all down with nary a hiccup.
No one in charge at theNYT even asked themselves if Judith Miller and Michael Gordon were the right people to go after the story. They were sycophants to the right wing from the start, and people at theTimes should have figured out that Miller’s long association with Laurie Mylroie was a big red flag–especially when the civilians at the Pentagon brought Mylroie in to consult.
But, hell, one only need look at the print version’s advertising to realize for whom they’re writing–and it certainly isn’t the kid who’s forced by circumstances to enlist and fight in the wars theTimes helped start. TheTimes is written for the people whoprofit from war.
This was all symptomatic of the insane rush to cater to the extreme right wing in the name of being “fair and balanced,” which continues to this day. Judith Miller was a traitor and should have been treated as such. Yet she’s still celebrated as something great instead of being strung up by the heels and given the Mussolini treatment, which she richly deserved.
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