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‘This American Life’: A Retraction

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Posted on Mar 18, 2012
Procsilas Moscas (CC-BY)

“This American Life” host Ira Glass gave monologist Mike Daisey every opportunity to explain the lies in his “The Agony and Ecstasy of Steve Jobs” performance, which became the basis for one of the radio show’s most popular and talked about episodes. Daisey’s rationalization for lying turns out to be, like much of his show, bullshit.

Essentially, Daisey says that his monologue, which chronicles a 2010 visit to China during which he claims to have witnessed or heard about terrible labor abuses at Foxconn and other factories, is true—not by the standards of journalism, but by the standards of the theater. What an insult to theater.

Here he is in his own words: “Well, I don’t know that I would say in a theatrical context that it isn’t true. I believe that when I perform it in a theatrical context in the theater that when people hear the story in those terms that we have different languages for what the truth means.”

“This American Life” actually fact-checked Daisey’s show, but, as the host explains in the recording below, they were more concerned with confirming Daisey’s claim that Apple’s factories actually had terrible working environments, and they do. But they were not thorough enough when it came to Daisey’s claims of personal interactions, several of which later proved to be false. The whistle-blower in all this is Daisey’s translator, who is herself a character in the story and was tracked down by a skeptical “Marketplace” reporter.

“This American Life” devoted an entire episode, which aired this weekend, to retraction of the story, and it’s embedded below. In it, Glass confronts Daisey, who admits he wanted to make people care about an important story: “I’m not going to say that I didn’t take a few shortcuts in my passion to be heard. But I stand behind the work. My mistake, the mistake that I truly regret, is that I had it on your show as journalism and it’s not journalism. It’s theater. I use the tools of theater and memoir to achieve its dramatic arc and of that arc and of that work I am very proud because I think it made you care, Ira, and I think it made you want to delve. And my hope is that it makes—has made—other people delve.”

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It’s important to remember that the essence of Daisey’s story—that Apple drives a consumer-industrial complex that dehumanizes and abuses Chinese laborers—is true. And it is because of this that the performer’s lies are so offensive, because they cast doubt on the work of anyone struggling to dig up the truth on behalf of the powerless.  —PZS


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By Paul Kirk, March 20, 2012 at 7:21 pm Link to this comment

Yeah, that fine line between theater and social activism and wanting to be an investigative reporter. We’ve done a great job of conflating blogging, movie making, citizen journalism, music, performance, art and anything else, OTHER than, JOURNALISM, as a means to Americans’ so called consciousness and conscience.

There are projects out there to support investigative journalism, and schools of journalism working on the new convergent newsroom and citizen and community journalism. But investigative journalism is ebbing quickly, so we have to expect some clarity on a current topic from a performer?

Drats. Well, indeed, here in Seattle, those Sacred Cows of Boeing, Amazon and Microsoft, you find it hard to see clarity when it comes to mid-level reporting on those entities. But, the Steve Jobs show? What did you expect? Americans are famous for lying, for not living, for just being these reality TV wannabes.

But Steve Jobs, and Jeff Bezos, and, what is not an American thing—wanting the next obsolete app and i-thing is global now. People defecate in the streets of India while on their smart phones. American only in the huckster aspect.

For Foxconn, for the people abused by this i-orgasm, read some good stuff—hit the hyper-links too (kind of like watching The Cove at home and making sure to hit the extras). Here’s the dirt on you, me, the High Price of Free Shipping —a great piece in Mother Jones about our own US slave factories of Amazon.

http://www.alternet.org/story/154043/iempire:_apple’s_sordid_business_practices_are_even_worse_than_you_think

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adrienrain's avatar

By adrienrain, March 19, 2012 at 6:12 pm Link to this comment

I swear I didn’t try to leave that comment more
than once.

Report this

By heterochromatic, March 19, 2012 at 5:35 pm Link to this comment

jimmmmmy,
.... .  Regarding Emilez I will invoke rule number one
at this point.[ Rule #1 never argue with an idiot]
———


you can certainly disagree with EmileZ, but, while he’s
usually sarcastic as hell, he’s fucking far from being
an idiot.

Report this
EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, March 19, 2012 at 5:28 pm Link to this comment

I can’t stay mad at you gerard (yet), but for the next few minutes at least, you are still on my shit-list, so beware.

I, EmileZ, am considering attempting to bring order and discipline to truthdig commenters.

I hope you are with me, if I go through with my plan.

At any rate, Mike Daisey is a stinkin’ liar. That is a permanent stigma that will always be attached to him entirely beyond my control and beyond the realm of this website at least until he comes clean.

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EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, March 19, 2012 at 4:59 pm Link to this comment

I think I will wishy-washy my big balls and gently dry them with a brand new towel, then spray them with something or other, and lie on my bed thinking happy thoughts about how wonderful it is to lie, and how it is not so bad to get caught after all.

I am in touch with uber-reality!!!

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EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, March 19, 2012 at 4:50 pm Link to this comment

Fuck you gerard

Report this
adrienrain's avatar

By adrienrain, March 19, 2012 at 4:44 pm Link to this comment

My god - it’s a one man performance piece! I’ve
written poetry on the same topic, and both
poetry and theater are art, which is, as Picasso
said, “a lie that tells the truth.” I suspect This
American Life is running scared about a libel
suit. It could all have been avoided by
acknowledging the piece as a theater piece -
period. Now here’s mine:

The Subject is Trade

The subject is TRADE
- it is not the prisoner working without hope
or the worker imprisoned by despair.
The subject is not the small boy who makes
bricks
or knots rugs for fifteen hours, or twenty -
no clocks there (nor schools or doctors, love or
hugs)
There is only TRADE: triumphant and free.
Or the little girl, who’s not the subject
but the Object of TRADE -
sold for her too-big eyes,
her too-young, too-thin figure
for whom Love and Hugs
are the shackles of a life in TRADE
which is - at long last - Free.

Once, TRADE was hailed as a Deity of Liberation
-
perhaps even by the Dissident
Professor, now so weak and ill
from torture and poor rations
in the prison factory
where he crafts bright, mocking flowers
and radios that never send for help
and toys for the blessed children of the USA
- still called Free
(even if they aren’t the subject, which is TRADE)
but who suck now the Blood of Slavery
Prey in their games on the traded lives of
children
who never get to play
or the mothers in rags,
sewing silk, watching their babies waste away
for TRADE. . .and only TRADE is Free

These American kids, unknowing,
Breathe the poisoned air of unclean cells
Bounce multicolored balls of misery
Play with lead-hearted dolls of prison make
(the very best that Daddy can afford,
now that he’s been down-sized
and Mommy’s job went South) American kids-
Sanding in the last, blazing rays
of the American Century
Dazzled by the Holy Light of Trade
look unseeing into future darkness -
What waits outside this pool of glare?
a slum? a desert? or just
an ordinary cell?
Or does it matter - since the
Subject, after all, is TRADE. . .
By adrien rain burke

DISCLAIMER!!! I don’t KNOW that hypothetical
professor, or the trafficked girl, or the enslaved
boy brickmaker. I’ve never met the Haitian
seamstress, or the daddy who lost his job, or his
two children with a murky future…........ (NOW -
whas that necessary?)

Report this
adrienrain's avatar

By adrienrain, March 19, 2012 at 4:44 pm Link to this comment

My god - it’s a one man performance piece! I’ve
written poetry on the same topic, and both
poetry and theater are art, which is, as Picasso
said, “a lie that tells the truth.” I suspect This
American Life is running scared about a libel
suit. It could all have been avoided by
acknowledging the piece as a theater piece -
period. Now here’s mine:

The Subject is Trade

The subject is TRADE
- it is not the prisoner working without hope
or the worker imprisoned by despair.
The subject is not the small boy who makes
bricks
or knots rugs for fifteen hours, or twenty -
no clocks there (nor schools or doctors, love or
hugs)
There is only TRADE: triumphant and free.
Or the little girl, who’s not the subject
but the Object of TRADE -
sold for her too-big eyes,
her too-young, too-thin figure
for whom Love and Hugs
are the shackles of a life in TRADE
which is - at long last - Free.

Once, TRADE was hailed as a Deity of Liberation
-
perhaps even by the Dissident
Professor, now so weak and ill
from torture and poor rations
in the prison factory
where he crafts bright, mocking flowers
and radios that never send for help
and toys for the blessed children of the USA
- still called Free
(even if they aren’t the subject, which is TRADE)
but who suck now the Blood of Slavery
Prey in their games on the traded lives of
children
who never get to play
or the mothers in rags,
sewing silk, watching their babies waste away
for TRADE. . .and only TRADE is Free

These American kids, unknowing,
Breathe the poisoned air of unclean cells
Bounce multicolored balls of misery
Play with lead-hearted dolls of prison make
(the very best that Daddy can afford,
now that he’s been down-sized
and Mommy’s job went South) American kids-
Sanding in the last, blazing rays
of the American Century
Dazzled by the Holy Light of Trade
look unseeing into future darkness -
What waits outside this pool of glare?
a slum? a desert? or just
an ordinary cell?
Or does it matter - since the
Subject, after all, is TRADE. . .
By adrien rain burke

DISCLAIMER!!! I don’t KNOW that hypothetical
professor, or the trafficked girl, or the enslaved
boy brickmaker. I’ve never met the Haitian
seamstress, or the daddy who lost his job, or his
two children with a murky future…........ (NOW -
whas that necessary?)

Report this
adrienrain's avatar

By adrienrain, March 19, 2012 at 4:44 pm Link to this comment

My god - it’s a one man performance piece! I’ve
written poetry on the same topic, and both
poetry and theater are art, which is, as Picasso
said, “a lie that tells the truth.” I suspect This
American Life is running scared about a libel
suit. It could all have been avoided by
acknowledging the piece as a theater piece -
period. Now here’s mine:

The Subject is Trade

The subject is TRADE
- it is not the prisoner working without hope
or the worker imprisoned by despair.
The subject is not the small boy who makes
bricks
or knots rugs for fifteen hours, or twenty -
no clocks there (nor schools or doctors, love or
hugs)
There is only TRADE: triumphant and free.
Or the little girl, who’s not the subject
but the Object of TRADE -
sold for her too-big eyes,
her too-young, too-thin figure
for whom Love and Hugs
are the shackles of a life in TRADE
which is - at long last - Free.

Once, TRADE was hailed as a Deity of Liberation
-
perhaps even by the Dissident
Professor, now so weak and ill
from torture and poor rations
in the prison factory
where he crafts bright, mocking flowers
and radios that never send for help
and toys for the blessed children of the USA
- still called Free
(even if they aren’t the subject, which is TRADE)
but who suck now the Blood of Slavery
Prey in their games on the traded lives of
children
who never get to play
or the mothers in rags,
sewing silk, watching their babies waste away
for TRADE. . .and only TRADE is Free

These American kids, unknowing,
Breathe the poisoned air of unclean cells
Bounce multicolored balls of misery
Play with lead-hearted dolls of prison make
(the very best that Daddy can afford,
now that he’s been down-sized
and Mommy’s job went South) American kids-
Sanding in the last, blazing rays
of the American Century
Dazzled by the Holy Light of Trade
look unseeing into future darkness -
What waits outside this pool of glare?
a slum? a desert? or just
an ordinary cell?
Or does it matter - since the
Subject, after all, is TRADE. . .
By adrien rain burke

DISCLAIMER!!! I don’t KNOW that hypothetical
professor, or the trafficked girl, or the enslaved
boy brickmaker. I’ve never met the Haitian
seamstress, or the daddy who lost his job, or his
two children with a murky future…........ (NOW -
whas that necessary?)

Report this
adrienrain's avatar

By adrienrain, March 19, 2012 at 4:44 pm Link to this comment

My god - it’s a one man performance piece! I’ve
written poetry on the same topic, and both
poetry and theater are art, which is, as Picasso
said, “a lie that tells the truth.” I suspect This
American Life is running scared about a libel
suit. It could all have been avoided by
acknowledging the piece as a theater piece -
period. Now here’s mine:

The Subject is Trade

The subject is TRADE
- it is not the prisoner working without hope
or the worker imprisoned by despair.
The subject is not the small boy who makes
bricks
or knots rugs for fifteen hours, or twenty -
no clocks there (nor schools or doctors, love or
hugs)
There is only TRADE: triumphant and free.
Or the little girl, who’s not the subject
but the Object of TRADE -
sold for her too-big eyes,
her too-young, too-thin figure
for whom Love and Hugs
are the shackles of a life in TRADE
which is - at long last - Free.

Once, TRADE was hailed as a Deity of Liberation
-
perhaps even by the Dissident
Professor, now so weak and ill
from torture and poor rations
in the prison factory
where he crafts bright, mocking flowers
and radios that never send for help
and toys for the blessed children of the USA
- still called Free
(even if they aren’t the subject, which is TRADE)
but who suck now the Blood of Slavery
Prey in their games on the traded lives of
children
who never get to play
or the mothers in rags,
sewing silk, watching their babies waste away
for TRADE. . .and only TRADE is Free

These American kids, unknowing,
Breathe the poisoned air of unclean cells
Bounce multicolored balls of misery
Play with lead-hearted dolls of prison make
(the very best that Daddy can afford,
now that he’s been down-sized
and Mommy’s job went South) American kids-
Sanding in the last, blazing rays
of the American Century
Dazzled by the Holy Light of Trade
look unseeing into future darkness -
What waits outside this pool of glare?
a slum? a desert? or just
an ordinary cell?
Or does it matter - since the
Subject, after all, is TRADE. . .
By adrien rain burke

DISCLAIMER!!! I don’t KNOW that hypothetical
professor, or the trafficked girl, or the enslaved
boy brickmaker. I’ve never met the Haitian
seamstress, or the daddy who lost his job, or his
two children with a murky future…........ (NOW -
whas that necessary?)

Report this
adrienrain's avatar

By adrienrain, March 19, 2012 at 4:44 pm Link to this comment

My god - it’s a one man performance piece! I’ve
written poetry on the same topic, and both
poetry and theater are art, which is, as Picasso
said, “a lie that tells the truth.” I suspect This
American Life is running scared about a libel
suit. It could all have been avoided by
acknowledging the piece as a theater piece -
period. Now here’s mine:

The Subject is Trade

The subject is TRADE
- it is not the prisoner working without hope
or the worker imprisoned by despair.
The subject is not the small boy who makes
bricks
or knots rugs for fifteen hours, or twenty -
no clocks there (nor schools or doctors, love or
hugs)
There is only TRADE: triumphant and free.
Or the little girl, who’s not the subject
but the Object of TRADE -
sold for her too-big eyes,
her too-young, too-thin figure
for whom Love and Hugs
are the shackles of a life in TRADE
which is - at long last - Free.

Once, TRADE was hailed as a Deity of Liberation
-
perhaps even by the Dissident
Professor, now so weak and ill
from torture and poor rations
in the prison factory
where he crafts bright, mocking flowers
and radios that never send for help
and toys for the blessed children of the USA
- still called Free
(even if they aren’t the subject, which is TRADE)
but who suck now the Blood of Slavery
Prey in their games on the traded lives of
children
who never get to play
or the mothers in rags,
sewing silk, watching their babies waste away
for TRADE. . .and only TRADE is Free

These American kids, unknowing,
Breathe the poisoned air of unclean cells
Bounce multicolored balls of misery
Play with lead-hearted dolls of prison make
(the very best that Daddy can afford,
now that he’s been down-sized
and Mommy’s job went South) American kids-
Sanding in the last, blazing rays
of the American Century
Dazzled by the Holy Light of Trade
look unseeing into future darkness -
What waits outside this pool of glare?
a slum? a desert? or just
an ordinary cell?
Or does it matter - since the
Subject, after all, is TRADE. . .
By adrien rain burke

DISCLAIMER!!! I don’t KNOW that hypothetical
professor, or the trafficked girl, or the enslaved
boy brickmaker. I’ve never met the Haitian
seamstress, or the daddy who lost his job, or his
two children with a murky future…........ (NOW -
whas that necessary?)

Report this
adrienrain's avatar

By adrienrain, March 19, 2012 at 4:43 pm Link to this comment

My god - it’s a one man performance piece! I’ve
written poetry on the same topic, and both
poetry and theater are art, which is, as Picasso
said, “a lie that tells the truth.” I suspect This
American Life is running scared about a libel
suit. It could all have been avoided by
acknowledging the piece as a theater piece -
period. Now here’s mine:

The Subject is Trade

The subject is TRADE
- it is not the prisoner working without hope
or the worker imprisoned by despair.
The subject is not the small boy who makes
bricks
or knots rugs for fifteen hours, or twenty -
no clocks there (nor schools or doctors, love or
hugs)
There is only TRADE: triumphant and free.
Or the little girl, who’s not the subject
but the Object of TRADE -
sold for her too-big eyes,
her too-young, too-thin figure
for whom Love and Hugs
are the shackles of a life in TRADE
which is - at long last - Free.

Once, TRADE was hailed as a Deity of Liberation
-
perhaps even by the Dissident
Professor, now so weak and ill
from torture and poor rations
in the prison factory
where he crafts bright, mocking flowers
and radios that never send for help
and toys for the blessed children of the USA
- still called Free
(even if they aren’t the subject, which is TRADE)
but who suck now the Blood of Slavery
Prey in their games on the traded lives of
children
who never get to play
or the mothers in rags,
sewing silk, watching their babies waste away
for TRADE. . .and only TRADE is Free

These American kids, unknowing,
Breathe the poisoned air of unclean cells
Bounce multicolored balls of misery
Play with lead-hearted dolls of prison make
(the very best that Daddy can afford,
now that he’s been down-sized
and Mommy’s job went South) American kids-
Sanding in the last, blazing rays
of the American Century
Dazzled by the Holy Light of Trade
look unseeing into future darkness -
What waits outside this pool of glare?
a slum? a desert? or just
an ordinary cell?
Or does it matter - since the
Subject, after all, is TRADE. . .
By adrien rain burke

DISCLAIMER!!! I don’t KNOW that hypothetical
professor, or the trafficked girl, or the enslaved
boy brickmaker. I’ve never met the Haitian
seamstress, or the daddy who lost his job, or his
two children with a murky future…........ (NOW -
whas that necessary?)

Report this

By gerard, March 19, 2012 at 4:38 pm Link to this comment

Isn’t it fiction that is supposed to be truer than life?  Or is it, true to life?

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EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, March 19, 2012 at 3:20 pm Link to this comment

You appear to have got yours (cake) and are eating it too.

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mrfreeze's avatar

By mrfreeze, March 19, 2012 at 2:46 pm Link to this comment

jimmmmmy - I believe Friedrich von Schiller’s famous words apply to A LOT of people today…In fact, our whole culture IMHO has lost is marbles. Through our consumption, we knowingly collude with cut-throat merchants to enslave 10’s of millions of workers throughout the world. We do it and we rationalize it by believeing that “we’re making their lives better.”

In the end, the moral (or supposed) moral OUTRAGE (don’t you just love that word???) over the henious lies of Mr. Daisey are what the Media would have us focus-on, not the brutal, ugly and uber-uncomfortable truth….....we really don’t give a shit as long as we’ve “got ours.”

Report this

By jimmmmmy, March 19, 2012 at 2:24 pm Link to this comment

Good responses Mr. Freeze .  Regarding Emilez I will invoke rule number one at this point.[ Rule #1 never argue with an idiot]

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mrfreeze's avatar

By mrfreeze, March 19, 2012 at 1:44 pm Link to this comment

EmileZ - Indeed! Thanks for that!

“Against stupidity, the gods themselves contend in vain!”

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EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, March 19, 2012 at 1:33 pm Link to this comment

@ Mr Freeze

OK buddy.

I feel the rage deep down in my exeedingly large you-know-whats, just like you.

A turkey is a turkey.

Nothing on god’s green earth can change that.

And we my friend, have been dealt a turkey.

Not the turkey the workers at Foxconn have been dealt, but a turkey nonetheless.

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mrfreeze's avatar

By mrfreeze, March 19, 2012 at 1:23 pm Link to this comment

EmileZ - I’m afraid NO ONE is “keeping tabs” on the MSM when it comes to MSM and the utter bullshit and lies it manufactures each and every minute of each and every day. Who is holding the Media’s feet to the fire whilst they vomit out their mountain of crap facts, idiotic opinions, etc. I’m still thinking about that yellow powder C. Powell brought to Congress. Why no “journalistic retribution?” Why no heads rolling. Why not outlets shut down?

I find it odd that Glass, whom I do respect, let Mr. Daisey’s story pass as “journalism” in the first place. I was sitting there listening to the tale the first time it was broadcast in January. For me, he wasn’t telling a tale that hasn’t been told for over 25 years. What’s so disturbing is that he apparently needs to LIE IN ORDER TO GET EVERYONE’S ATTENTION. And now, because he’s a “liar” Americans can go back to purchasing all their shit from China and feel better knowing that the slaves are still operating at full capacity…....

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EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, March 19, 2012 at 12:52 pm Link to this comment

@ Mr. Freeze

As a man in possession of big balls, I am intruiged with your idea for “This American Life”.

However, there are so many organizations that already keep tabs on Fox and Rush Limbaugh, and such, that it may not make for such an interesting broadcast.

As for most of the rest of your comment, I am with you balls and soul.

I think the real issue here is truth insofar as it can be ascertained.

You can have all the legitimate complaints in the world about “the news” from whatever source it comes.

It changes nothing about this particular case in my opinion. In fact it makes it that much worse.

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mrfreeze's avatar

By mrfreeze, March 19, 2012 at 12:15 pm Link to this comment

I will repeat my question:

IF, IF Glass had the balls to pick FOX News reporting and broadcast it in the same way he broadcasts most of his programs (many of which are more social commentary and not really “journalism”) would he be “going after the lies?”

Now that Glass (and seemingly other Media outlets) have “got religion” about jounalistic integrity (whatever the fuck that is), are we going to see reporters go after each other? Are we going to see the propaganda machines (pretending to be news outlets) shut down or re-branded as propaganda?

To this day I’m still waiting for NPR to explain why it did not challenge the Bush Administration’s lies about Iraq and Afghanistan. Heck, NPR couldn’t even bring itself to utter the term “torture” because it was too “highly charged and controversial a term.” But now, to call a performance artist provocateur out for lacking journalistic integrity is patently ridiculous.

Report this

By allen, March 19, 2012 at 11:43 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

jimmmmmy wrote:

“There are much more important issues that truth dig should be spending resources on than this “story.”

Almost certainly true.  However, I think one large lesson emerges from this (small) story:  lies and misrepresentations, no matter which side of an argument they are intended to support or which end of the political spectrum they issue from, ultimately serve only to introduce distrust and skepticism into what might otherwise be a productive dialogue.

Never a good outcome, you might agree.

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EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, March 19, 2012 at 11:11 am Link to this comment

@ jimmmmmmy

I don’t have any soldiers thank you very much.

Time for you to take a long walk off a short pier don’t you think jimmmmmmmmy my boy????

Grow some balls dude, big one’s if you can manage it.

Then you will not have to resort to such silly nonsense.

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By jimmmmmy, March 19, 2012 at 10:59 am Link to this comment

Emilez . So that includes killing your own soldiers?

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By jimmmmmy, March 19, 2012 at 10:57 am Link to this comment

Mike Strong. Great response. There are much more important issues that truth dig should be spending resources on than this “story”

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By Mike Strong, March 19, 2012 at 10:09 am Link to this comment

A small irony here. “PZS” is who? Please don’t assume that I am so “in the know” or that you are so well known that I would automatically know who PZS is without looking it up or that I know PZS’ position with Truthdig. It should not be that hard to spell out “Peter Z. Scheer, managing editor” as a matter of practice. Otherwise it joins a fairly recent general practice, one I detest, of anyone abbreviating anything on an ad hoc basis SADIGAS, wasting my time and attention.

Now, as to Mr. Daisey. We should really not bring theater into journalism as reportage. It is hazardous for the separate integrities of both enterprises. I didn’t listen to This American Life so I can’t comment on Mike Daisey’s squirming. I might make something different of it than you. You seem to have taken a specifically ferocious swipe at him and I don’t know whether I would take the same swipe.

However, the other irony, is that we, all of us. get more of a sense of the world around us, and our own (what I will call) “personal operating reality” from fiction, more so than the full accumulation of factual (or “factual”) reportage and history. For that matter, even the military torturers decided to take lessons from episodes of “24” about how to treat prisoners.

Which brings up a third irony (there are probably more than I can count) in that while Daisey’s supposed theatrical version of truth (often where we go to present truth we can’t present in news because we don’t have the testimony) will be used to smear the accurate accounts of Apple and Foxconn’s ugly treatment of workers it may have a more effective message than straight reportage - had it remained within the realm of “entertainment.”

That said, I am glad to note that most commentors have not lost sight of the crimes against humans perpetrated by Apple. Maybe we could have a review of all of Steve Job’s great works of charity and his courageous stands on human issues - a very short list (irony from me).

That brings me to something I find nearly incomprehensible and certainly reprehensible of so many in news media, the use of Apple computers to put out news, photos and video. Jobs long ago showed how intolerant he was of freedom of speech at the same time that Gates promised hands off Slate (at its formation) to Michael Kinsley and kept that promise.

Despite my disgust for Gates’ monetary weight directed at schools and GMO issues (obviously never taught in classrooms and thinks he knows too much overall, just because of money and position), Gates has often been villainized for things he should be praised for while Jobs was given pass for things he should have been called-on for - sometimes reversing credits due.  Clearly, for news organizations, holding to high principles ends at the “cool” of using Macs for too many working journalists. Watch out for how much glass goes into building those houses of publication.

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By EmileZ, March 19, 2012 at 10:05 am Link to this comment

The war on disinformation is the kind of war in which I am more than willing to accept pretty much any and every “casualty”.

Body Count - Body M/F Count

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o32dMsxClSI

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By jimmmmmy, March 19, 2012 at 9:41 am Link to this comment

emilez. I get your point Truth in journalism is important. However you are missing mine. I think this expose would have been better left to Hannity or O’reilly If a guy is passionate enough for his cause so that he’ll ruin his own credibilty among his peers, he just becomes another causualty in the on going war of disinformation.

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By EmileZ, March 19, 2012 at 9:25 am Link to this comment

@ jimmmmmyy

You are obviously confused, are not familiar with Daisey’s work, his appearances on UP and Democracy Now, This American Life (a radio program), or anything else that is relevant to the point being made by this A/V booth (hint) entry, which in no way diminishes any fact-based criticism of Apple (a company which, unlike worshipful yet critical Mike Daisey, I personally despise).

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By jimmmmmy, March 19, 2012 at 8:58 am Link to this comment

Emilez. The fact is that Apple products are built by slave labor. That is the point of the article period. The critique of the article is just trying to make those that profit from this state of affairs feel better about the horrors that their greed produces.

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By jimmmmmy, March 19, 2012 at 8:50 am Link to this comment

This love affair by media for the “Slaver” Steve Jobs is disgusting. He like Edison and Gates were self promoters more than they were inventors and all of them actually held back progress until they were paid and glorified. Thanks to Jobs and Gates millions of Americans have lost their employment to Asian slave factories. Thats a hard fact. One has to wonder about the motives of Ira Glass. Maybe he has some kind of christo -capitalist man crush on Jobs.

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By EmileZ, March 19, 2012 at 8:41 am Link to this comment

@ jimmmmmmy

I don’t know about Farley Mowat, but Daisey passed off his “literary” endeavor as the truth and lied to conceal his sources, then lied some more. Then he came back and lied yet again.

I don’t like being lied to.

I think Ira Glass (I have only heard his show a couple times, it isn’t my thing, and I almost never listen to NPR) did the right thing in calling him out, and am greatful to him for spending as much time as he did trying to get to the truth.

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By jimmmmmy, March 19, 2012 at 8:24 am Link to this comment

There is nothing new here .Corporate journalists are staus quo appologists. I remember this tactic being used on Farley Mowat in the 60s when he pointed out the plight of the northern natives in Canada. He endured years of smearing by mainstream media, for using factualy inaccurate literary devices to under score the truth of there situation. The same thing is happening here.

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By WR Curley, March 19, 2012 at 7:49 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I listened to the original broadcast with the usual
skepticism one is obliged to bring to all things NPR.
For reasons best known to their editorial boards, the
several “news” and entertainment elements of NPR and
the NYT have been systematically trashing all things
Apple for some time now. The Pope, Assad,
Achmedinajad, Steve Jobs, monsters of the moment for
the masters of your worldview.

What’s troubling is obvious…pretty much everything
you buy is made in Chinese factories contracted to
American and transnational capitalist enterprises. So
why single out Apple? Do the workers churning out the
Android fare any better? Does your Black and Decker
toaster pop off a more humanely organized assembly
line? If in fact a contrast can be made, might it
not have been useful to have reported these differing
conditions?

No, as in the article above, for reasons we cannot
divine, the MSM neocon propaganda machine has singled
Apple out from the pack.

I also listened - admittedly transfixed - as the
terminally self-absorbed Mr. Glass’s posted his
recantation this past Saturday. He hauled this fat
fraud Daisey out onto the rack and slowly, publicly,
disembowelled him for the delectation of his
listeners. I’ve always thought Mr. Glass was a bit of
a creep, but I hadn’t guessed he could be so petty
and so cruel.

“This American Life” indignantly posits that the
program and its fans were the parties injured by
Daisey’s lies. Well, dudes…how about Apple? Did it matter more that Glass was lied to than that Apple was slandered? Where was the in depth follow-up investigation aimed at getting the facts straight? Ought not such an exercise have been TAL’s professional obligation as the “journalists” they pretend to be?

Nah. What matters is the message, not the method. The
media machine that pre-digests your reality for you
planted a distaste for all things Apple deep within
the entrails of its audience. That’s what counts.
Suckers.

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By mrfreeze, March 19, 2012 at 7:08 am Link to this comment

When, I wonder, will Ira Glass and all the rest of the “journalists” out there come clean about the lies the allowed the GWB Administration to tell about Iraq and Afghanistan?

Glass has spent a lot of time trying to cover his ass (for his own faulty “fact checking” whatever the FUCK that means today).

Finally, as a thought exercise: What if Ira broadcast Fox News Network programs once a week. Just pick one. How many of them would turn out to be lies, lies and more lies….and yet they are allowed impunity from their “kin?” I’m just asking…..

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By carl quinlan, March 19, 2012 at 5:26 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I listened to Ira confront Mike Daisey. After the confrontation, Ira spoke to a nytimes reporter about the real abuses. The reporter said workers often worked sixty or so hours a week. Ira replied “but is that so bad?”

It made my stomach turn. I’d like to see Ira spend 60 hours working in a factory, then file a report about it. See if he still wonders if “it’s so bad.”

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By ardee, March 19, 2012 at 4:52 am Link to this comment

I confess to having missed this, but state that I love “This American Life” and try hard to listen to it each Saturday.

I had a crew trimming some of my trees this weekend and was otherwise occupied, darn it!

One thought though; the state of journalistic integrity in this country seems to have fallen to the point wherein Mr. Daisey believes himself correct in using lies to make a truthful point.

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By EmileZ, March 19, 2012 at 1:58 am Link to this comment

Ira Glass did a really great job confronting Daisey.

He pinned him down over and over, yet in the end, Daisey still wouldn’t come clean.

It was painful to listen to the man continue to behave like such a jackass after given repeated opportunities to admit to his lies.

He should cancel the show and apologize.

Wake up Mike Daisey, you have been exposed.

Don’t make things worse than they already are.

If you really give a shit about exposing the evils of global capitalism and “making people care” you will gracefully bow out.

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