Top Leaderboard, Site wide
Winner 2013 Webby Awards for Best Political Website
Top Banner, Site wide
Apr 24, 2014

 Choose a size
Text Size


Lapland’s Mystery Moths Puzzle Science
The Key to 2014




The Divide


Truthdig Bazaar
States of Emergency: The Object of American Studies

States of Emergency: The Object of American Studies

By Russ Castronovo (Editor), Susan Gillman (Editor)

more items

 
Report

Away With Objectivity

Email this item Email    Print this item Print    Share this item... Share

Posted on Nov 7, 2011
Wikimedia Commons / SusanLesch (CC-BY-SA)

By Ruben Luengas

(Page 2)

The essence of journalism is for me the search for truth, which is not usually sitting in a corner waiting for the arrival of reporters to run into it, pick it up as it was found—chaste, pure, immaculate and free of contaminants—and then transfer it without subjective media interests, “professional, objective and balanced,” to the readers, the public and audiences beyond.

The great Polish journalist Ryszard Kapuscinski wrote that “to be a journalist, first of all, you have to be a good human being. Bad people cannot be good journalists. If you’re a good person, you can try to understand others, their intentions, their faith, their interests, their difficulties, their tragedies.” A good person, then, who exercises journalism can keep his eyes subjective, but honest, to describe what he sees from his specific place and tell from there what he sincerely sees, whether it is literally a physical place, or a social or economic context in which he is immersed.

I wonder, for example if anyone believes that the mainstream media had honest, sincere, professional, objective and balanced coverage on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. I contend that there was not even any coverage; instead, they had propaganda intended to stop other opinions from being voiced, turning the propaganda into “public opinion,” thanks to what Sigmund Freud’s nephew, Edward Bernays, a pioneer in the use of collective manipulation technique, called “the engineering of consent.”

Those who hold political and economic power are very comfortable with the journalists who claim to be neutral and objective. We live in a world where no one can be neutral, where neutrality is often confused with hypocrisy and indifference. 

Advertisement

Square, Site wide
How to be neutral between truth and falsehood, between hatred and love, between construction and destruction? How to be neutral with such impunity, so much injustice, so many repulsive acts committed by man against man? How to be neutral to the children killed in Iraq and Afghanistan? How to be neutral when so many demons, disguised as humans, are on the loose causing grief, pain and immeasurable suffering to so many people in this world who don’t deserve it? Do not ask me for neutrality, please; I plead I am partial toward the search for truth and all that may give us back a more human way of life.

I maintain that theologians who believe that so-called objectivity, balance and fairness are required to consecrate a reporter at the sacred altar of the “professional” have been successful in that many “journalists,” unconsciously nostalgic of when they were babies rocked with a pacifier in their cribs, today—with their news, interviews, features and reports—are mollifying a society that is in urgent need of waking up.

Journalism that does not make you uncomfortable is not journalism. Journalism that soothes and numbs instead of alerts and awakens is not journalism. For human beings, being awake is an indispensable requirement to realize our dreams, for if we take a good look at the world with sincerity and honesty, we can see how millions are living and others are watching with indifference, and we can see it is the corrupt and evil face of a nightmare.

Veteran Mexican journalist Ruben Luengas is host of Telemundo’s 11 p.m. newscast in Los Angeles and the program “Contragolpe” on KPFK 90.7 FM. This article was translated by Isabel Carreon Scheer.


New and Improved Comments

If you have trouble leaving a comment, review this help page. Still having problems? Let us know. If you find yourself moderated, take a moment to review our comment policy.

OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 15, 2011 at 6:27 am Link to this comment

Marian Griffith said:

Agitprop would be a welcome breath of fresh air in the dank atmosphere of mainstream media

Away with Objectivity! We need agitprop like a flower needs sunshine, yes, agitprop is the fresh air that we Leftists breath, it is the only way to advance the values and direction of the progressive agenda!

Report this

By ardee, November 15, 2011 at 4:29 am Link to this comment

OzarkMichael, November 14 at 5:22 pm

I did not mean to imply that you should ever stop your postings. Like your alter ego, IMax, you are a great advertisement for the values and direction of the progressive agenda.

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 14, 2011 at 11:12 pm Link to this comment

Is that a dogma I see before me?

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, November 14, 2011 at 10:06 pm Link to this comment

Any stigma will do to beat a dogma.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 14, 2011 at 5:22 pm Link to this comment

A pyschobabbler like myself can still make some pretty good jokes and have a good time doing it.

Sometimes I write stuff that is too complicated for you to understand, but other times I write stuff that is quite lighthearted, its ‘psychobabble’, its a joke, and you could understand it if you werent so dull that you cant laugh at your expense.

I like to exclaim “Away with Objectivity!” and attach various Leftist slogans to it as the situation and my quirky creativity dictates. Now that you comment upon it, ardee I will continue to do that now and then, expecially for you, for as long as i am here.

Dont forget what it means, and where it started, and why you need to keep hearing it.

Report this

By ardee, November 14, 2011 at 4:44 pm Link to this comment

OzarkMichael, November 14 at 1:10 pm

Psychobabble much?

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 14, 2011 at 1:10 pm Link to this comment

Away with Objectivity!

Let the Leftists slumber in a nest feathered with downy Agitprop.  Dont let foul Objectivity ruin such sweet dreams! Away, I say!

Take Objectivity where it is welcome, such as against conservatives.

Report this
blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 14, 2011 at 11:52 am Link to this comment

Libya: the toll Nato didn’t count
The justification for the bombing of Libya was to protect civilians. So why aren’t
casualties recorded?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/aug/29/libya-toll-nato-does-not-count

Hamit Dardagan
guardian.co.uk, Monday 29 August 2011 15.30 EDT

A rebel fighter walks inside a warehouse containing the remains of at least 50
burned bodies in Tripoli, LIbya. A survivor said they were civilians killed by
pro-Gaddafi soldiers. Photograph: Sergey Ponomarev/AP
No one deserves to die without their death being recorded. Except, it seems,
when they are the “collateral damage” of military interventions to “protect”
them. Answering a parliamentary question on civilian casualties immediately
before the invasion of Iraq, Tony Blair said that Saddam Hussein “will be
responsible for many, many more deaths even in one year than we will be in
any conflict”. Such an off-hand, fact-free, yet essentially quantitative statement
would never have gone unchallenged if it had concerned, say, taxation.

Blair’s prediction may have been wishful thinking, but he did at least address
the matter. Eight years on, Nato intervention in Libya holds itself to no
standard of measurement at all.

[...]

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 14, 2011 at 10:26 am Link to this comment

blog—-perishing 50,000 for a single person ain’t factual…...and you ca’t make it
factual….

you make the case that it was a single person rather than an army of goons
directed by the single person and that the objective wasn’t to remove the entire
structure headed by the single person….....


....and then we’ll talk about the number “perished”

Report this
blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 14, 2011 at 10:17 am Link to this comment

try earning some respect, sonny,,,,,

unmistakable voice of a pedant, long over due for delivery of a rewarding brow
beating - nevertheless…

still waiting (not expecting) any response directly addressing my central polemic:
perishing 50,000-plus civilians to get a single bogyman…  what say ye, approved?
tally-ho, bombs away!

Calling all dupes: WAR IS PEACE

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 13, 2011 at 1:51 pm Link to this comment

bluedog, sorry pal but it’s about a quarter of a century since I’v ebeen to a pub or
any other drinking establishment….....


” Gaddafi calls for elections in June” ——-after 42 years without any elections,
after making illegal ANY political activity other than his own——-after
criminalizing political criticism——AND WELL AFTER MURDERING people who
peacefully asked for political participation.

you publish such slurry and decry that you’re not treated respectfully….....


try earning some respect, sonny,,,,,

Report this
blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 13, 2011 at 1:39 pm Link to this comment

cited
http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=37626&Cr=Libya&Cr1;

based largely on unconfirmed reports - unreported is that many of the casualties
were security forces and that the protests were never peaceful - armed
insurrection form day one - why Gaddafi called for UN Fact-finders on the ground
- not CNN - they were never sent

Gaddafi also called for Western-style elections in June - declined - NTC knew
they’d lose

as for being unable to reply without expressing contempt… this too speaks for
itself - probably works best at the pub

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 13, 2011 at 1:23 pm Link to this comment

blogdog—-you can’t insist on anything from anyone when you post nonsense.

“the Libyan Jamahirya” were all composed of people who served at the pleasure of
Gaaddafi…no dissent…no other party but Gaddafi’s own…and no elections.


you have ZERO understanding of the UNHCR stance on Libya’s governance. even
in the link to the report of the Working Group, there are, in the recommendations
to correct 57 deficiencies listed——27 of which the Libyan’s rejected.
the Working Group met last November and by February to full UN HRC
recommended suspending Libya’s membership.

http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=37626&Cr=Libya&Cr1;
you’re talking garbage and your attempt to posit a parallel with the US political
system is worthy only of contempt.

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, November 13, 2011 at 12:59 pm Link to this comment

heterochromatic—Some people can write thousands of pages without thinking at all.  If the writers and their readers share a particular axiomatic framework and set of assumptions, it’s especially likely that fundamental issues will be skipped over.  Hence Altemeyer can use ‘too much’ as a measure determining authoritarianism; all of his friends, colleagues, enemies, and other readers pretty much agree as to what ‘too much’ means, so why discuss it?

Report this
blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 13, 2011 at 12:39 pm Link to this comment

first, the language used to dismiss my posts implies maturity well under that of
an octogenarian, and of significantly less education than post graduate - more
fitting to a head-banger pub… again, civility please

I do not recommend ‘medals’ or ‘insist’ on anything - in fact I rarely post my
own words, mainly citations - as for anachronistic red baiting… speaks for itself

Casey’s quote widely cited from CIA staff meeting - UN HRR supportive of the
Libyan Jamahirya, consiting of thousands of local governing councils - they ran
the country - assuming the US superior, sending hundreds of representatives to
DC to be bought and sold, and that’s better democracy, is questionable -
Libya’s economic/social development record is unassailable - accusations that
the Gaddafi family looted the nation are wildly brandished, but the mad
scramble to find the booty is turning up no foreign accounts under the family
name - all in the name of the Libyan Jamahyria.

again, expected knee-jerk reaction: attack this as supporting a dictatorship
- wrong - merely pointing out the severity of the prevailing propaganda -
propaganda that precipitated over 50,000 needless deaths, immeasurable
human suffering and installation of a gang of ruthless, al qaeda-led cut
throats, in place of a peaceful, functional system, all for obvious ulterior
motives

again, the point of my polemic, which has yet to be addressed: the Libyan coup
d’etat and neocolonial invasion of Africa was achieved by NATO, initially
through armed insurrection and naked agitprop, so effective
Goebbels would envy it - once the civil war was rolling and NATO got legal
cover (which may not hold up, complaints being drafted) to bomb
indiscriminately, the coup was within reach - but, may be undone, as the NTC
has failed to win popular support and cannot control much of Libya’s
geography; moreover the resistance is regrouping and learning.

NATO disinformation war propaganda was very effective in demoralizing the
popular resistance; so today there is this:

[...]
“Libyan Liberation Front said in a statement, that they will soon launch a media
campaign called ‘‘information campaign Almthelman’‘, which will publish the
recordings documented on videos and photos, including some of its military
operations in areas of Libya.“

(correction: we found out that the statement of Liberation Front was false. No
persons, entity or group will be allowed to film, video or record activites of the
green army. The leadership and resistance of Libyan Liberation Front will not…
be delivering media speeches, interviews or appear in the media , no high
ranking official will be allowed to send messages without approval from other
operational cells, the army refuse to communicate with the media.)

[...]
...e.g. http://tinyurl.com/6m8u6bd
[...]
LATEST NEWS::  Heavy fighting in Zawya city and 30 new tanks with green
flags seen for the first time! are advancing with reports that Saif Al Gaddafi
[unconfirmed] is leading the fight! with Green soldiers. and Rebels are shocked
and don’t understand what is happening (confirmed on their pages)

NTC military spokesman confirm that they are fighting now against organized
army and not amateur volunteers!

[...]

recently this: http://allafrica.com/stories/201111110919.html

Libya: Liberation Front Organising in the Sahel

10 November 2011
               
Following the fall of Tripoli and the rise of the National Transitional Council, a
rejuvenated national resistance has begun on Libya’s borders, writes Franklin
Lamb.

[...]
Today the Sahel is providing protection, weapons gathering and storage
facilities, sites for training camps, and hideouts as well as a generally
formidable base for those working to organise the growing Libyan Liberation
Front (LLF). The aim of the LLF is to liberate Libya from what it considers NATO
installed colonial puppets.

[...]

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 13, 2011 at 10:35 am Link to this comment

Ana—-disagree with the guy all you wish, and I don’t buy everything that he’s
peddling, but “not thought through” is not even remotely likely. books and papers
get edited and revised and then circulated for peer review prior to appearing in
public….as well, you don’t churn out 200+ pages in a couple of days.

long gestation period on this thing.

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, November 13, 2011 at 9:45 am Link to this comment

Ozark Michael—Agitprop isn’t necessarily false.  The Civil Rights movement was largely agitprop, its core ideology being the proposition that (1) persons of African descent were being deprived of the liberal rights, and (2) this was wrong, and (3) possible to correct, a true proposition (in my opinion).  Once the proposition was widely acknowledged, the mechanism for correcting it was obvious and effective.  (I don’t mean by this that the shibboleth of race, and all its baneful effects, disappeared overnight; only that the state ceased to support it actively.)

As for the Casey ‘quote’, I don’t believe it, unless it was said in jest; it’s too silly.

heterochromatic—I think many repairs would have to be made to Altemeyer’s definition of authoritarianism, but I don’t think requiring access to state power is one of them.  I strongly suspect A. of not having thought things through before he started writing.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 13, 2011 at 7:04 am Link to this comment

blogdog insists we live and act by his phony quotations, that we never forget the phoney quotation.

Rather than provide a reliable source for his phony quotations, he changes the subject.

Rather than provide a source for his phony quotations, he launches one scurrilous attack after another.

The effect of the phony Casey quote has worked its magic over the years. Leftists today believe he really said it and they also feel that conservatives unknowingly support such a terrible program.

I have one word for that phoney quote, its widespread repetition, and Leftist acceptance of phoney quotes as fact: agitprop!

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 13, 2011 at 6:51 am Link to this comment

Errata: it was heterochromatic who stepped in and provided the helpful quotes from Altemeyer. i mistakenly assumed it was examinator. double kudos to heterochromatic!

examinator, you explained that your goal is to understand the ‘rumps’ of ‘both sides’ and you threw Altemeyer at me on the Right. Your other link was to Chomsky, who also provides analysis of the Right, and although his analysis was less severe(and more patronizing) I dont see yet where you achieve balance by similar critique of the radical left.

This is what I said in my response to heterochomatic, but I meant to ask examinator:

Did you recommended Altemeyer’s book already knowing that it had the bias? If you didnt know, thats ok. we are cool.

But if you did know of the bias beforehand, when would you have told me that it is biased against me? Or would you just let me simmer in some worry and guilt that i must be authoritarian, while you stand above me grinning? That seems to be the whole point of the survey and the book.

I would appreciate an honest answer to that question.

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 13, 2011 at 1:27 am Link to this comment

sorry blogdog, you’re probably not enough older than myself so that you’re
entitled to respect while you’re spouting nonsense.

however, should you be above 81 years of age, hold advanced degrees in history
or related fields and if you stop being too idiotic to post links that, such as the
one to the UN HRC that you done understand and possibly haven’t even read…and
which refute the point that you’re using them to make…..

I reconsider.

give Libya a medal..!!!....read the damned thing and figure out what it’s talking
about.

Report this
blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 12, 2011 at 11:44 pm Link to this comment

RE: By heterochromatic: blogdog, you can’t be f’king serious. 

First, a little civility please. I am probably older than you; know my history and I know this: your straw man, conflated point polemic belies characteristic knee-jerk thoughtlessness.

Gaddafi’s deserving or not to be ‘kicked out’ is not my point and not my call.  But, was he better or worse than the US’ Saudi buddies, where rape victims are beheaded (e.g. http://tinyurl.com/7mr76z9)? Were his assassinations of traitors more or less heinous than those of the US, Russia, Israel? As for prisons… well, no nation on earth jails more per capita than the US; foreign wars, Libya had them; again, compared to the US… well, that’s not really fair - no nation comes close.  Anyway, you make the call, based on your moral compass.

Then, read this: http://tinyurl.com/3z452wv

UN Report Offers Smoking Gun Proof of NATO and US Lies about Libya Posted on November 1, 2011 by nsnbc - By Dennis South

January 4, 2011 report of the 16th Session of the United Nations General Assembly Human Rights Council, Universal Periodic Review:

Report of the Working Group on the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya [Document A/HRC/WG.6/9/L.13] -  http://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/hrcouncil/docs/16session/A-HRC-16-15.pdf

Before NATO and the U.S. started bombing Libya, the United Nations was preparing to bestow an award on Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, and the Libyan Jamahiriya, for its achievements in the area of human rights. That’s right–the same man, Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, that NATO and the United States have been telling us for months is a “brutal dictator,” was set to be given an award for his human rights record in Libya. How strange it is that the United Nations was set to bestow a human rights award on a “brutal dictator,” at the end of March.

[...]
______________________

and this: about the hit on CIA whistle blowers returning to DC to roll up a drug ring.

The Truth about Lockerbie, and Pan Am 103, and Drugs  http://www.welfarestate.com/panam103/ The C.I.A. drug trade through the Syria and Iran was going pretty sweet for Syrian C.I.A. contractor Monzer al- Kassar.

He gives the suitcase, C.I.A. agents clear the suitcase through to New York.  When the suitcase of drugs was switched for a bomb in Dec 21, 1988, it was cleared as usual. Central Intelligence Agent Charles McKee was aboard, as were 4 other agents, all killed. At the crash scene, CIA agents posing as Pan Am employees walked away with a suitcase.

First, the press had word of a Syrian or Palestinian suspect, but when wind of the C.I.A. involvement began to surface, the C.I.A. needed a scapegoat. The socialist isolationist country is always the best bet, because they are enemies of the U.S. by their mere existence, so bombing and/or sanctions always needs a good excuse. C.I.A. killed two birds with one stone, and pinned the Flight 103 bomb on Libya.

______________________

and this:

German TV exposes CIA, Mossad links to 1986 Berlin disco bombing  http://100777.com/node/101 By a German correspondent 27 August 1998

A documentary broadcast August 25 by German public television presents compelling evidence that some of the main suspects in the 1986 Berlin disco bombing, the event that provided the pretext for a US air assault on Libya,  worked for American and Israeli intelligence.

[...]

_______________________


finally, my polemic: starting an armed insurgency - without broad popular support - ginning up a pretext for a massive bombing campaign - more ordinance than the Luftwafe dropped on England -  bombing essential to your proxy’s victory and deposition the so-called despot and massive civil terrorization, butchery, looting -  all tolled, that’s a war crime against humanity - perishing over 50,000 to get a single strong man

NATO are currently the world’s premiere war criminals

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 12, 2011 at 10:40 pm Link to this comment

Ana—-seperate out the “leaders” who weren’t exercising unchecked state power
including military and police and we’re left with Alexander and ..maybe….Marcus..

hope that helps to solve the possible problem .

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, November 12, 2011 at 9:47 pm Link to this comment

All right, so let’s take a few examples from history, or at least legend.  Jesus, Gautama, Socrates….  Alexander the Great, Marcus Aurelius, Luther….  Abraham Lincoln. Gandhi. Martin Luther King.  Absolutely devoted followers.  Obedient lieutenants.  Were they giving the leader of their choice ‘too much’ power?

I trust you see the problem here.

Now, as to the Left, it depends what definition of ‘Left’ you’re using.  Clearly, if the Left is the party of peace, freedom, and equality—not someday or ‘after the Revolution’ but immediately, right away, here and now—a lot of great leaders of the supposed Left are going to have to be kicked out.  I’d like to see that myself, but I don’t think it will go over too well.  Which I think points out another problem, the thirst for leaders, pseudo-parents, authorities.

What we seem to have at the moment—until we apply the knives of our logic—is that ‘authoritarian’ is someone we don’t like, along the lines of ‘fascist’.  But we already have enough terms of abuse.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 12, 2011 at 9:29 pm Link to this comment

The Leftist variations were in included, so kudos to heterochromatic for finding a more balanced approach.

I notice that Altemeyer was listed in the bibliography because of his “Right-Wing Authoritarian” book so i guess he is an authority figure in the field, bias and all.

A young political science major, or a sociologist, or a psychologist, might try to construct a battery of questions to explore the authoritarianism of Leftists.

That would be a great project.

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 12, 2011 at 8:28 pm Link to this comment

Ana—-“too much” as in just about all…..whether the
power is freely given or seized and the obedience
compelled ......the amount of power hold by an
authoritarian leader is not compatible with democracy
or with political freedom.


Authoritarianism===


“a style of government in which the ruler demands
unquestioning obedience from the ruled”—-Oxford
Dictionary of Politics

” concentration of authority in an individual or
small group ” American Political Dictionary


here’s a little overview——

http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1G2-3424300067.html


(note the citations)

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, November 12, 2011 at 7:54 pm Link to this comment

I don’t think much of Altemeyer’s definition of authoritarianism: ‘Authoritarianism is something authoritarian followers and authoritarian leaders cook up between themselves. It happens when the followers submit too much to the leaders, trust them too much, and give them too much leeway to do whatever they want….’  ‘Too much’ according to whom?  And by what measure, and under what circumstances?

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 12, 2011 at 6:45 pm Link to this comment

blogdog, you can’t be f’king serious. 

you must have been born yesterday and never knew who
or what Gaddafi was and what he did during his life,

before you do any other posting about this sh1t, try
explaining why Gaddafi SHOULDN’T have been kick out.

how did he come to power?
and
why hadn’t there been any elections in the more than
40 years of his reign?

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 12, 2011 at 6:29 pm Link to this comment

Oz, Casey was a rather unrestrained sort of guy and I
find it not too difficult to believe that he would have
said it.
What he meant, and what he was trying to communicate is
certainly obscure, but I’m intrigued.

Who published the quotation?

Report this
blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 12, 2011 at 6:25 pm Link to this comment

Gaddafi calls UN for sending facts finding mission to Libya
Tripoli : Libya | Mar 02, 2011 at 5:28 AM PST BY
http://tinyurl.com/5ug4fpl

Colonel Muammar Gaddafi urged the United Nations to send a mission to Libya to investigate the facts relating to the popular revolt against his government.

[...]

There Was No Libyan Peaceful Protest,  Just Murderous Gangs and Nic Robertson

By Jay Janson
http://www.truthdig.com/report/commentreceived/away_with_objectivity_20111107/
16 June, 2011 - Countercurrents.org

Nic Robertson and Anderson Cooper are surely aware of their achievement in promoting the human carnage of civil war and the destruction of a beautifully well-kept and prosperous nation, the 53rd highest developed country in the world with free health care and education. A standard of living that was higher than nine European nations, including Russia, is no more, thanks to their having daily led our entertainment with their war mongering of purposely distorted reporting, misreporting, disinformation, and blacking out of information that would have made this massive loss of human life impossible. They’ll not be able to wash this off their conscience.

1. There were no peaceful protests!

2. CNN, covering the Danish Cartoons anniversary demonstration that was cooped with an announcement from London to make it into a “day of rage against Libyan leader Gaddafi,’ showed us camera panning of a modest size crowd (mostly men) jumping up and down shouting against Gaddafi (not against Libya’s high standard of living).

3. There were armed attacks on police stations (even traffic police) and vicious attacks on Chinese and Korea construction workers already two days before,  and during the anniversary of the Danish Cartoons or “day of rage,’ executions of 50 captured Libyan soldiers, one beheaded, some hung along with police officers. And who knows how many ordinary Libyan civilians harmed by tough guys brought in to Benghazi and other Cyrenaican towns. This was reported by Reuters and BBC, but not CNN.

4. CNN showed a video of a small amount of people scattering, running at twilight, cell phone camera jerking around in confusion with the sound of shooting from completely unidentified sources. There was Anderson Cooper and Nic Robertson crying out that “Gaddafi’, was “targeting, shooting, bombing his own people who only want democracy. At the same time a flood of anti Gaddafi reports were coming in from well funded Libyan exile backers in various countries.

5. Imagine! On Feb. 21 a bare four days after the overseas calls for “day of rage’  U.S. media’s UK counterpart, the Telegraph reported that ” the International Federation for Human Rights said Libya’s second city along with Sirte, Tobruk,  Misrata, Khoms, Tarhounah, Zenten, Al-Zawiya and Zouara had all been taken by protesters. “Protesters?” We were given to see these tough hombre heavily armed “freedom fighters’ in their fleets of pickup trucks looking nothing at all like protesters.

6. While, very quickly, heavily armed insurgent gangs, always described as “ordinary citizens who had dropped their office jobs a few days before to fight for freedom,’ were efficiently overrunning towns and airports, Cooper and Robertson kept excitedly exclaiming cities were being bombed from the air - civilians targeted - showing viewers the same single bomb crater in a field outside of a town for five days running as proof, though oddly admitting no one had been injured.

[...]

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 12, 2011 at 6:12 pm Link to this comment

@heterochromic:

Nevertheless, as a good Leftist, you must never forget that Casey said it.

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 12, 2011 at 5:57 pm Link to this comment

Casey is alleged to have said that in a CIA staff
meeting…and the authorized transcript of the meeting
doesn’t seem to be available on-line.

can’t find who it was that circulated the quotation.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 12, 2011 at 5:49 pm Link to this comment

blogdog asks: “please expose this agent provocateur - said agent need be known - so as to avoid the taint of his/her provocations - a source please

OK blogdog, sources are exactly what is required.

Whats your source for the Casey “quote”? I mean if you are going to ‘remind everyone’ about an important truth, surely you have a reliable source to prove the quote is factual? Everyone will then have complete trust that Casey really said it.

Do not try to push the burden of proof to me.  Its your damned quote that you want eveyone to never forget. The onus is completely on you.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 12, 2011 at 5:31 pm Link to this comment

quote]To expand the debate to another area, let’s go here:

“And that’s off the record.”

DR Zing followed that with an interesting exposition as to why nothing should be “off the record”. i am thinking, “well, thats a standard, thats an approach you could take and I would agree with it.”

But then he winds up his post with this:

Instead of playing stupid when interviewing Wall Street occupiers, journalists should be joining the movement.

That can only mean assistance. That can only mean help. Such help would involve accentuating the good, downplaying the bad. Downplaying the bad means certain shady events become suppressed. Certain bad things that Occpiers say which wont appeal to the masses end up “Off the record”.

At which point we should realize that DR Zing’s whole complaint about “off the record” goes down the crapper. Now I am thinkin,. “DR Zing, you Leftist hypocrite, you almost had me fooled.”

Report this
blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 12, 2011 at 5:29 pm Link to this comment

RE: ...quote: “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when
everything the American public believes is false.” — William J. Casey, Director of
the CIA (1981 - 1987)”... was fabricated by a Leftist agent provocateur…

please expose this agent provocateur - said agent need be
known - so as to avoid the taint of his/her provocations - a source please

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 12, 2011 at 5:25 pm Link to this comment

blogdog—-they’re probably not in jail for life—-the
OCCASIONAL sentence for murder——because they were
not convicted of murder.

—-”...presently severe provocations in Syria -
recently in Libya - both to launch civil
wars -...”


some people believe that governments using artillery
and other bombardment to kill people protesting their
government’s denial of human rights is a pretty
severe provocation….but I doubt if either the
former Libyan regime or the not-yet former Baathist
regime in Syria was doing all the slaughtering in
order to launch civil war.


but who knows, those wacky, fun-loving governments in
the Middle East sometimes get misunderstood.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 12, 2011 at 4:54 pm Link to this comment

allow me once again to remind you of 3 things to never forget:

3. “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the
American public believes is false.” — William J. Casey, Director of the CIA (1981
- 1987)

Allow me to remind you that the “quote” above was fabricated by a Leftist agent provocateur, and has been spread all over the internet by agents provocateurs.

But since they are Leftists we cant call them out as agents provocateurs unless we are prepared to be called ‘fascist’ for exposing the truth.

Which i am ready to endure, because thanks to years of dealing with folks like Altemeyer I am used to being called fascist for no good reason. So do your worst, blogdog, you lying hypocrite, you agent provocateur.

Report this
blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 12, 2011 at 4:39 pm Link to this comment

RE: ...“the Weathermen” blew away in the wind…Occupiers who run around
vandalizing property…

get a clue kids - the easiest way to discredit any movement is to send in
agents provocteurs to incite violence - or simply blow something up
and phone in a credit for your targeted group (see Operation Gladio) - best of
all if you’ve got ‘patsies’ with ‘legends’ to take the fall (see 9/11) - oldest trick
in the book (see Nero’s Great Fire of Rome) - look into Bill Ayers and Bernadette
Dohrn, as to why they’re not in jail for life - the typical sentence for murder -
http://tinyurl.com/88wrtj5

presently severe provocations in Syria - recently in Libya - both to launch civil
wars - and seen in most so-called ‘color revolutions’ from the Maghreb to
Pesharwa similar mission - chaos, war, failed states

allow me once again to remind you of 3 things to never forget:

1. “Deception is a state of mind and the mind of the state.” - James Jesus
Angelton - Director of CIA Counter Intelligence (1954-74)

2. “The Central Intelligence Agency owns everyone of any significance in the
major media.” - William Colby - Director of the CIA (1973-76)

3. “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the
American public believes is false.” — William J. Casey, Director of the CIA (1981
- 1987)

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 12, 2011 at 3:34 pm Link to this comment

I must say that i was surprised at your very good response, examinator, which shed light on the question of double standard.

But someone who lived in a country long ruled by Communists and who ardently supported the Communist Party would also be one of my psychological
right-wing authoritarians even though we would also say he was a political left-winger.

What Altemeyer is intent on finding are what Leftists on Truthdig already call “right-wingers”, and he admits it. It takes a totally different mindset to start and carry forward Anarchist, Socialist, and Communist revolutions, and more importantly the mindset of the many, the common Leftists who would support moving in that direction and eventually desire and act for such a system. None of those people show up as a blip to Altemeyer. Not one. Even a young Stalin(before obtaining power) would look like an angel on that survey. You explain why from his quote:

You could have left-wing authoritarian followers as well, who support a revolutionary leader who wants to overthrow the establishment. I knew a few in the 1970s, Marxist university students who constantly spouted their chosen authorities, Lenin or Trotsky or Chairman Mao. Happily they spent most of their time fighting with each other, as lampooned in Monty Python’s Life of Brian where the People’s Front of Judea devotes most of its energy to battling, not the Romans, but the Judean People’s Front. But the left-wing authoritarians on my campus disappeared long ago. Similarly in America “the Weathermen” blew
away in the wind. I’m sure one can find left-wing authoritarians here and there, but they hardly exist in sufficient numbers now to threaten democracy in North America.”——

So only Left wingers who knowingly line up behind Mao or Lenin(after the fact, after millions dead) are counted as authoritarian. Really?  As long as they dont follow or appeal to a known mass murderer they arent dangerous?

“there’s your argument OZ, he doesn’t overlook them. he dismisses them as too few to be harmful…...”

That dismissal is justified by delineating the authoritarian Leftist down to only those who knowingly follow mass murderers, which succeeds in defining Leftist authoritarianism down to almost nothing. Not a very imaginative or inquisitive method.

I want to know, examinator, if you think these Occupiers who run around vandalizing property would score high on Altemeyer’s scale for authoritarianism.
I think they would score like any other Leftist angel, especially compared to peaceful me, a conservative. Apparently I have much more to be ashamed of.  Apparently I am more dangerous. Such is the judgment of Altemeyer’s scale.

His bias makes the judgement useless.

Altemeyer’s goal is to show that conservatives are bad, and his strict questions were admittedly biased to that end. Yet he cant find a way to apply his method of analysis to his own beliefs. That inability to be strict with himself is the hypocritical double standard which the Left has used for decades, and its getting worse.

Did you recommended Altemeyer’s book already knowing that it had the bias? If you didnt know, thats ok. we are cool.

But if you did know of the bias beforehand, when would you have told me that it is biased against me? Or would you just let me simmer in some worry and guilt that i must be authoritarian, while you stand above me grinning? That seems to be the whole point of the survey and the book.

There is a tendency for Leftists to play little games like that. Except the rules are so obviously slanted that it isnt much of a game, its more like a trap which captures a hated class of people too dangerous to be not be watched very carefully, and justifies clamping chains on their wrists in the future.

Christians would be wise to understand where Leftist rhetoric and social science is leading them. Its been done before and we must not allow it again.

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 12, 2011 at 1:41 pm Link to this comment

Oz, i read as far as


—-“Authoritarianism is something authoritarian followers and authoritarian
leaders cook up between themselves. It happens when the followers submit too
much to the leaders, trust them too much, and give them too much leeway to
do whatever they want—which often is something undemocratic, tyrannical and
brutal. In my day, authoritarian fascist and authoritarian communist
dictatorships posed the biggest threats to democracies, and eventually lost to
them in wars both hot and cold.”—-

and wondered how you can say that he overlooks non-fascist authoritarians.


—- a little later——-pg 9


” But someone who lived in a country long ruled by Communists and who
ardently supported the Communist Party would also be one of my psychological
right-wing authoritarians even though we would also say he was a political left-
winger. So a right-wing authoritarian follower doesn’t necessarily have
conservative political views. Instead he’s someone who readily submits to the
established authorities in society, attacks others in their name, and is highly
conventional. “


—-pg 10——


  “You could have left-wing authoritarian followers as well, who support a
revolutionary leader who wants to overthrow the establishment. I knew a few in
the 1970s, Marxist university students who constantly spouted their chosen
authorities, Lenin or Trotsky or Chairman Mao. Happily they spent most of their
time fighting with each other, as lampooned in Monty Python’s Life of Brian
where the People’s Front of Judea devotes most of its energy to battling, not the
Romans, but the Judean People’s Front. But the left-wing authoritarians on my
campus disappeared long ago. Similarly in America “the Weathermen” blew
away in the wind. I’m sure one can find left-wing authoritarians here and there,
but they hardly exist in sufficient numbers now to threaten democracy in North
America.”——


there’s your argument OZ, he doesn’t overlook them. he dismisses them as too
few to be harmful…...

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 12, 2011 at 1:21 pm Link to this comment

In the conclusion on page 239 of Altemeyer’s online book, he recommends that right wing Christian fundamentalist types need to be aware of their ‘score’ in this or that scaling of fundamentalism or authoritarianism. I was only scanning the book, but that seems to be the point.

I am familiar with some of the experiments and scales he references. There are at least two major loci of bias in Altemeyer’s work that i think unravels his conclusion.

Constant, repeated reference to the Nazis as the model of all authoritarian regimes thoughout his book betrays one Altemeyer bias. He overlooks the fact that there are other types of authoritarian regimes which have a completely different social psychology to them.

The field of questions would have to be worded very differently to capture a Leftist type of authortitaianism. But Altemeyer doesnt see the need to capture the authoritarian failings of the Left.

Nevertheless, we see that a Leftist movement(Occupy Wall Street) is more violent, more insistant, more confrontational, less democratic, and more likely to damage society as it pursues its holy cause. Yet because of the wording and emphasis of Altemeyer’s questions, Occupiers would score sweetly low on the authoritarian and fundamentalist scales. Yet such people propel us toward a state no less authoritarian than the Nazi. Why is there no tool to assess that?

Altemeyer would need assistance phrasing the questions in an entirely different way to capture the particular Leftist flavor of authoritarianism. He would need assistance from someone like me, the very type of person who is so dangerous according to his own work. I have to say the irony is sweet. His work deserves to be incomplete.

What i have written is only a brief overview, made after a quick scan of Altemeyer’s online book. No doubt my brief assessment does not impress anyone, but then again Leftists dont recognize insightful criticism of their own ideas.

I would need to devote weeks of my life to take Altemeyer’s book apart properly, line by line, down to its foundations. There was a time when i would work on such a challenge fearlessly, testing myself to see what was wrong with me and my own beliefs. I have already gone the distance many times. But that earns me no credit, and it would not make difference to Altemeyer or any of you. How well i know it.

Unfortunately, not one Leftist ever attempts to apply their strict analytical methods against themselves, and i notice that the stricter they are with me(Fundamentalist Christian) the more lenient they are with themselves.

I can only conclude that Leftists consider their point of view to be the absolute truth and thus any questions about their own bias is irrelevent to them.

If that isnt bias, i dont know what is. It is a hypocritical double standard. One ought to wonder what future purpose these Leftist analysis of conservatives and Christian fundamentalists are meant to lead to. I have wondered for years and here is a poetic expression that sums it up: you are ‘forging chains’ for me.

The tone of your post about objectivity was kind, examinator, but the meaning is bitter. Realizing that this will eventually become an existential struggle, I express the truth of the matter as best I can, and must hurl those chains back in your face.

Report this
examinator's avatar

By examinator, November 11, 2011 at 9:21 pm Link to this comment

OzarkMichael,
Fair point,
In some countries there are disclosure requirements, however,they aren’t always adhered to.

The key point is often the source of the ‘news’ and the economic cost both direct and indirect (upsetting a good advertiser) of producing the ‘news’ copy. In business terms News organizations are primarily in the advertising businesses,( i.e. making money)information or educators is a poor back runner.
Specifically many news items are direct from press releases etc in which case the information is usually spun something chronic to start with.
Because investigative journalism and specialization is expensive the media prefers generalists which are under enormous pressure to produce ‘grabbing’ stories(read sensational or ultra simplistic). This is invariable necessitates writing to an audience inclusive of their prejudices/biases.

With the business ethic in mind a very wide view of truth is implied. “its better to say sorry than not try it on at all”...i.e. it’s only wrong if caught.

I hold the view that truth knows no source bias e.g. even Tea Baggers have some truth sometimes. No one is right or wrong all the time, sadly even me.
Therefore, I’m neither convinced that more stringent disclosure would make an enormous difference BUT it wouldn’t hurt especially for the less intellectually active.
One needs to understand the real rumps of both sides not just the ‘intelligentsia’ (?)
I find the following helpful.
http://members.shaw.ca/jeanaltemeyer/drbob/TheAuthoritarians.pdf
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2zYaKXeyXE&feature=related

FYI, I now run my own business/marketing/security consulting company(its more of a co-operative)
I have tertiary qualifications in Business/marketing,Computer programming and project management. I am an *avid eclectic reader* (information Junkie).

I’ve been a long term volunteer Crisis intervention counsellor; been chair and/or executive to several community organization;  have even been on/ advised election committees for CANDIDATES who I considered were the best available 7 for 9 successes….and here’s the kicker I don’t belong to or automatically support any political party.In fact I don’t support party governments
I am a-religious as opposed to atheist…simply because some key atheists feel the need to be anti-religion which I’m not. I am a consistent critic of any proselytising from either side.

Hope this answers your questions

Report this

By ardee, November 11, 2011 at 9:39 am Link to this comment

gerard, November 10 at 7:58 pm
The sole exception to the rule are my comments, of course.  But then, you already knew that, didn’t you?  Hello!

Witty, Gerard, if you are not serious…..

Before I begin worshiping at your feet wink
I would note that the “articles” are editorials for the most part, and comply to a differing standard than a purported news article.

“What’s in a name?”

Further, the worth of TruthDig does not lie in revelations due to reading what is presented, but in providing for the exchange of information and ideas among those who post beneath those editorials. I refer ,of course, to the serious folks with honest intent.

Report this

By gerard, November 10, 2011 at 7:58 pm Link to this comment

Before this line goes to bed, may I offer a fresh perspective:

Truthdig is neither truthful nor a dig “beneath headlines” or anything else.  Truthdig takes most of its reports from other news agencies, many (perhaps most) of which don’t worry overly much about “truth” because “truth” is so hard to ascertain.  Some people say it doesn’t even really exist, while other people contend that they are the only ones in the world who have a bead on it.

Digging is hard work.  It consists of far mor effort-consuming elbow grease than merely surfing other tertiary, secondary or primary “sources” and then individually researching to verify the verifiability of th ose “sources”, many of which decline to have their names publicly known. 

Ergo, Truthdig is a euphemism and a propagandistic term implying accuracy but not necessarily taking it seriously.  Many of the comments found on Truthdig are patently untrue, but interesting.  Some of them are both untrue and boring or silly.  The sole exception to the rule are my comments, of course.  But then, you already knew that, didn’t you?  Hello!

Report this
D.R. Zing's avatar

By D.R. Zing, November 10, 2011 at 7:23 pm Link to this comment

Again, this article nails it. 

To expand the debate to another area, let’s go here:

“And that’s off the record.”

This is a little game spokespeople, CEOs, politicians and generals
play with the media—and the media play along.  Say my cellphone
rings. It’s President Obama on the line.  I turn to a journalist
standing next to me and say:  “Each time he calls it feels like piss
is running down my leg—that’s off the record.” 

Statements similar to that, which were not taken off the record, cost
a general his job last year when he and his staff were speaking to a
writer working for Rolling Stone.

More recently, recall this exchange about Israeli Prime Minister
Benjamin Netanyahu:

French President Nicolas Sarkozy: “I can’t stand him anymore, he’s a
liar.”

U.S. President Barak Obama:  ““You may be sick of him, but me, I have
to deal with him every day.”

The salient point:  Many journalists heard this comment and were
not going to report it
because it was considered off the record. 
It was only after a smaller news outlet published the quote that the
bigger news outlets were forced to report it. 

Beyond the issue of Netanyahu’s character, the issue becomes:  What
happens when journalists are tasked with suppressing information? 

The answer is self-evident:  We get propaganda and distraction, not
news and information.  Journalism is in a pathetic state.  People who
defend journalism are doing so in a crowded theater that is on fire
and they are afraid to scream “fire” for fear of yelling “fire” in a
crowded theater. The problem is, it’s not a crime to yell fire,
particularly if you’re a journalist, when the theater actually is on
fire. 

America is burning, burning in a perpetual state of war, burning with
a corrupt financial system, burning with a destroyed ecosystem. 
Journalists are playing the role of objective observers who will go up
in flames with the rest of us, but unlike the rest of us, their speech
has more protection in the constitution, and they are trained,
ostensibly, to be more observant than the rest of us are.   

Instead of playing stupid when interviewing Wall Street occupiers,
journalists should be joining the movement.  The financial
transactions that have consolidated the national and international
media into the hands of a few corporate titans have emasculated
journalists, forcing them to play the “on the record, off the record”
game and making them majors players in the game of hiding information
from the public. 

Journalists are good people. Right now they’re being fucked by
corporations, just like the rest of us. 

Dig peace. Don’t bury it. 

Zing

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 10, 2011 at 2:09 pm Link to this comment

Away with Objectivity! Away with the knave who insists on truth!

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 10, 2011 at 8:43 am Link to this comment

====Whatever you write probably isn’t the truth if you
don’t have a fresh perspective.===

for how long will you believe that, truthfully?

Report this

By Jorge X. Rodriguez, November 10, 2011 at 6:07 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Does Fresh Perspective come in a box?

Report this

By amongthepeople, November 10, 2011 at 4:57 am Link to this comment

Without a fresh perspective, you’ll get the wrong
impression about everything.

As I stated, objectivity is primarily about having a
fresh perspective on the subject.

Whatever you write probably isn’t the truth if you
don’t have a fresh perspective.

Report this

By solimiansky, November 9, 2011 at 10:53 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

grande ruben!

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 9, 2011 at 10:00 pm Link to this comment

amongthepeople,
Objectivity is primarily about having a fresh perspective on the subject.


THAT’S a damned fresh perspective. No doubt about it.

Report this

By amongthepeople, November 9, 2011 at 9:46 pm Link to this comment

Objectivity is primarily about having a fresh perspective on the subject.

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, November 9, 2011 at 9:31 pm Link to this comment

Basically one would want to be able to identify reporters (not necessarily by their street names) and get an idea of their veracity, beliefs, tastes, prejudices and so forth over time by comparing their work with what one knew directly or could reason out, and with other reporters’ work.  (The concept of ‘reporter’ would not necessarily have to refer to an individual.)

In this age of hackers and crackers, one would also want some way of positively identifying the source; a lot of work has been done along these lines using public-key encryption, I believe.  (Actually, authorial impersonation was a problem long before the cybernetic age.)

All of this presupposes a much less passive and credulous audience for news than we now seem to have, generally speaking.

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 9, 2011 at 9:04 pm Link to this comment

Ana—not your fault. After you brought it up I read at least 10 reports pulled from
newspapers and web sites and every last one stank… None of them were clear and
not a single one reported anything to make anyone understand what really went
on in the appeal.


It was all reported as “right to lie” rather than giving any more depth.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 9, 2011 at 8:41 pm Link to this comment

examinator, I have a little idea about your profession, and I would like to run it by you.

What if every article(not just opinion pieces) was not only signed by the author but also had ‘full disclosure’, and by that i mean the author would have to reveal their opinion on the issue at hand, their political affiliation, who signs their paycheck, etc.

Then the reader could judge how well the journalist managed to be attain objectivity, and some reporters would gain more trust and honor for attaining excellence towards presenting the facts in a truly balanced way.

Journalistic objectivity might be the gold standard, but the pretense of objectivity is fool’s gold. A little disclosure might go a long way to washing out the paid advertisement which passes for journalism.

Its good for other professions, why not yours?

Feel free to flame this, since i dont know if its a practical or good idea.

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 9, 2011 at 8:29 pm Link to this comment

if it was hedges’ Pulitzer, inciteful might serve.

Report this
examinator's avatar

By examinator, November 9, 2011 at 8:05 pm Link to this comment

Oops It should read “insightful genius” not “inciteful” wrong word, my bad.

The point being that one swallow doesn’t necessarily infer Spring.
Even Einstein went down the wrong path despite getting a Nobel prize. To me a thinker is only as good as their current piece.

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, November 9, 2011 at 7:40 pm Link to this comment

I thought the case actually went to the US Supreme Court.  But perhaps they merely refused to review it, i.e. figured the Florida courts were on the mark.  The conclusion (publications are free to lie) seems obvious to me anyway, although people were quite excited about it back in the day.

Report this
examinator's avatar

By examinator, November 9, 2011 at 6:43 pm Link to this comment

This article reads to me, as a journalist attempting to both justify and elevate their “profession”, in effect a lengthy advertisement using the tools of their trade.
I guess it all depends on what you think the point of journalism is i.e. To inform, entertain, indoctrinate, report, make money, fame, influence et al, as to if it gels.

One of the many problems with this and much journalistic endeavours is what it leaves out specifically, things like competence in the area of reporting, responsibility, proportion, integrity and appropriateness et al.

The definitions and justifications as they are are coveralls they could be used to justify a myriad of sins. I’m sure that journalists working for News Corporations would claim they too produce high quality journalism. To me that’s a bit like arguing that because a tea bagger ad or with it’s errors in fact, proportionality, selectivity of facts, bias, lacking in anything approaching analysis, emotive fearmongering are valid journalism.

The author throws terms like passion, truth etc with generous abandon but assiduously avoids both a definition or any sense of responsibility for those views.

The the article is based on a false premise i.e. that freedom of speech is an inalienable one and as such bears no responsibility for it’s probable consequences.

Lets be clear here ‘there is no such thing as a free lunch’ the other side of “free speech” is responsibility (this comes from “the social contract”. i.e. to use this “right ” in is beholden on the the user to abide by the law and by “reasonable man test” and there in lies the grey area)
In reality Free Speech in absolute doesn’t/can’t exist in a civil society.

NB I’m not talking censorship per se but my simple test of what IS in the best interests, need to know ... i.e. do we NEED (to know) an interview distraught victim family member or neighbour of a horrendous event?...a betrayed wife’s grief embarrassment humiliation (what has she done to *necessitates* public humiliation? the if it bleeds it leads concept (sensationalism)?
How can one justify tapping peoples telephones, looking over fences et al most of us would go ballistic if it happened to us.
My point here is that contrary to the author’s lofty ideals most day to day ‘journalism’ is more about making money, down in the gutter than up with the angels and to hell with the consequences.

One only needs to take a critical eye to Fox news (sic) to see that “truth, justice and the American way” (superman principal) is at best subjective,at worse propaganda.

Now we come to my favourite competence. I’d like 10 Cents for every bad science journalistic report I’ve read. e.g. AGW scientists describe this as part of a *process* not the *end result*  Anthropomorphic Climate Change is that.
The point is hardly moot to a scientist but “sensation sells.” bugger the truth.

Many journos are simply not qualified or competent to disseminate complex topics.
Lord Christopher Monkton is an extreme example. But what is the scientific factual basis of giving him media O2 ? he’s controversial does he or the plethora of professional (paid) phoney anti ACC spokes persons/ foundations etc add to the the knowledge/competence to intelligently decide, of the great unwashed?  Clearly they don’t, their sole purpose is to obfuscate and spread misinformation and fear.
Do journalist’s spend the time effort to sift through the hyperbole, fear of the tea baggers concerns to find the truth?..no
One side rubbishes them outright   the others fuel their fears with the above self interested misinformation.
Well no more space or enthusiasm….simple conclusion this article is like most journalistic endeavours overly simplistic and superficial when in depth analysis is required.
BTW a Pulitzer doesn’t confirm absolute inciteful genius merely a good article in comparison to the others submitted.

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 9, 2011 at 6:39 pm Link to this comment

Zing——


You need to re-think things if you think that it’s news reporting when the
reporter inserts his opinion into the story without labeling it as such.

      “A powerful political figure made a slanderous bigoted statement that
neither science nor history supports. The lie was: “One-legged eskimos
who live in Montana are subhuman.”


reporters aren’t lawyers and they don’t have an expert opinion as to what is
slanderous….good reporters solicit and insert expert opinion and tell the
readership where the source of the opinion.

Report this
D.R. Zing's avatar

By D.R. Zing, November 9, 2011 at 6:30 pm Link to this comment

heterochromatic,

Thank you for replying to my post. Your reply is
interesting.

Zing

Report this
tocynic's avatar

By tocynic, November 9, 2011 at 4:22 pm Link to this comment

Perhaps a more fundamental issue is that there is too much balkanization in news delivery; we each run to the sources closest to our positions, and the opportunities to see reporters and experts/pundits with differing opinions confront deceitful, or simply bad reporting, is severely diminished.

Worse, in this environment, false reporting is encouraged since there is reduced humiliation risk from peddling lies, being caught, or being confronted by those who could say that the reporter had been corrected and is deliberately pushing an issue they know to be false.

Now throw in the abrasiveness and crassness that passes for debate from the sabath-gasbags and their like; this does not encourage moderation in reporting.

The point of all this is that maybe journalism is warped as much by external factors as it is by declining standards, and to the extent this might be true, journalism might be destined to an increasingly minor role on the entertainment spectrum.

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 9, 2011 at 4:07 pm Link to this comment

Ana—-what I’m seeing is that it was the FLORIDA courts…...nothing about
SCOTUS.

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, November 9, 2011 at 3:45 pm Link to this comment

If you Google ‘fox monsanto supreme court lie’ you will find a series of stories about the decision, what led up to it, and the aftermath.  As is usual, there are different perceptions from different points of view.  However, it seems to me that any notion of free expression must include freedom to lie, except in special cases (slander, giving evidence, under oath) so I don’t find the decision surprising.  However, requiring one’s employees to lie might be questionable unless it were specified before hiring, since many people have personal or religious scruples about lying.  I suppose common sense would say that they should not be working in the mass media or government, or for a political party, in the first place.

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 9, 2011 at 3:10 pm Link to this comment

Ana—-I didn’t realize that the Supreme Court decided any such thing concerning
FOX and lying…....


if you have a link to the SCOTUS decision or something, please post it for me.


I do remember something about the liars at FOX either admitting that they lied or
claiming that FCC regulations didn’t absolutely debar them from lying, they said
the reg only told them that they shouldn’t lie…...

but that was an fed Court of Appeals that they weaseled their way past.

Report this
blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 9, 2011 at 2:16 pm Link to this comment

RE: ”...permissible for a news-reporting organization (Fox) to lie…”

suspension of 4th estate privileges at best, one would think (at least in the US) -
if real damages result from the willful public disinformation, there is legal
recourse - thousands of law suits are now being compiled by victims of NATO’s
Libya bombing campaign - will be interesting to see if Reuters, et al get named as
well, considering the massive media propaganda used to leverage R2P, UN should
be named - certainly CAMERUIN, SHARKOZY & OBOMBER will

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 9, 2011 at 2:03 pm Link to this comment

Zing (forgive me for using your handle here)


Zing spoke today in front a small group of folks and told them ” “One-legged
eskimos who live in Montana are subhuman.”


——This done, the obligation codified in the constitution is to report
accurately:

“  Zing , a powerful political figure made a slanderous bigoted statement that
neither science nor history supports. The lie was: “One-legged eskimos
who live in Montana are subhuman.”——-

Nooooooooo…....... That’s an OPINION piece…....let’s report this news and
include what we journalist-types learn when we go to check the claim…...

=======
Truthdig contacted several of the world’s most prominent geneticists and
anthropologists.,,,,

None agreed with the statement from Zing. Instead they said that there was
absolutely no evidence to back up the claim and a massive amount of scientific
evidence showing that eskimos are fully human.

Dr H. Chromatic, Huntz Hall Professer of Biochemistry at one of the world’s
most renowned universities, Irwin Corey College of Medicine, said that Zing’s
assertion is “Bizarre, unbelievable and probably the result of ingesting
improperly stored peyote (Lophophora williamsii )buttons.


(Several attempts to contact Zing for comment in response to Dr Chromatic’s
statement were unsuccessful and messages were left for him at his home and
office.)

==========

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, November 9, 2011 at 1:26 pm Link to this comment

Speaking of the Constitution, the Supreme Court decided several years ago (2003) that it was not only permissible for a news-reporting organization (Fox) to lie (about Monsanto), but to require its employees to do so, on pain of firing if they did not.  Just something to keep in mind.

Report this

By Erica Deutsch, November 9, 2011 at 12:47 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

As an attorney, the model of presenting two sides of the story to reach the “truth” resonates with me.  However, that is a model to resolve legal disputes - often with unclear facts.  To me, what Mr. Luengas proposes is that as a journalist he must be an advocate for the truth.  His client is the public, and his duty is to provide them truthful and accurate information.  Anyone who has seen Mr. Luengas’ reporting knows that he does not disguise fact as opinion as suggested by some comments.  He reports the facts, asks difficult questions - backed by uncontroverted evidence, and searches continually not only for the truth behind each story he reports on but also consistently seeks the truth of what is news and newsworthy.  His rejection of the conventional norms of contemporary journalism serve to provide us with stories and perspectives many of us would otherwise never know.

Report this
D.R. Zing's avatar

By D.R. Zing, November 9, 2011 at 12:34 pm Link to this comment

Forgive me, heterochromatic. but I believe you are missing the point. 

Suppose I say: “One-legged eskimos who live in Montana are subhuman.” 

A responsible journalist would:

* Check with scientists.  Do genetic tests indicate a subhuman species? 
No.  Are these tests sound?  Yes. 

* Check in with history. Have tyrants of the past used such broad
swipes to degrade, torture and kill?  Yes. 

* Check my wallet and my crotch.  Would I report this
statement if it were the words of a psychotic person I met on the
street? Do I have the balls to put this in context if it is a
statement from the chairman of a major political party?

This done, the obligation codified in the constitution is to report
accurately: 

“A powerful political figure made a slanderous bigoted statement that
neither science nor history supports. The lie was: “One-legged eskimos
who live in Montana are subhuman.” 

Ironically, the HBO series—a fictional work— The Wire said it best,
something like:  A lie is not a point of view; it’s just a lie. 

Mr. Luengas knocked this one out of the park.  One reason our nation
is in such a mess, one reason voters consistently vote against their
own self-interests, one reason the country has been able to systematically
destroy the ecosystem supporting human life, is that the news media
consistently report lies as if they were a point of view.

The point is not to have opinionated blowhards acting as reporters; the point
is to give journalists the editorial authority to name liars and detail
their lies when they report the news.  Otherwise, it’s not news; it’s
propaganda. And we have plenty of that, my friend. 

Dig peace. But don’t bury it.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 9, 2011 at 12:05 pm Link to this comment

We dont need no steenkin’ Objectivity! We are the 99%!

Report this

By felicity, November 9, 2011 at 10:30 am Link to this comment

Today’s media journalists seem to follow the practice
of getting an issue’s ‘spokesmen’ to present their
opposing sides while leaving the reader/viewer with the
belief that the (tacit) truth lies somewhere between
the two extreme views.  Of course, most of the time
this is pure nonsense.  In fact, the consumer is led to
believe that the truth does lie between the two views.

Report this

By heterochromatic, November 9, 2011 at 9:47 am Link to this comment

Luengas misstates

‘the journalist should be “impartial, objective, balanced and fair” as a
prerequisite for being a true “professional.” ‘

and then goes about bashing the misstatement.

It’s not the journalist who is supposed to be impartial. That’s neither expected
nor required.

What is expected and required is that a journalist, when he’s reporting news,
reports what happened with as much accuracy and factual information as
possible and that he doesn’t deliberately deviate from accuracy or fact.

Luengas asks
if journalista would thereby be “....required, for example, to take the point of
view of Hitler and the Nazis to be fair.” 

and of course Luengas is wrong to suggest that they would.

What would be required is that if reporting the POV of Nazis, the journalist
reported it factually and accurately,,,,,,,If Nazis tell a journalist that Jews are
sub-human and must be cleansed from Europe, a professional journalist must
report that Nazis say Jews are sub-human and must be cleansed from Europe.

and that’s what professional journalists reported.

 


Journalism isn’t all news reporting, however, and journalists are given to voicing
their opinions…frequently.

What is asked of them is that when they are writing opinion pieces, they clearly
label them as such.


Away with Luengas and away with the loathsome practice of reporting opinion
as fact…..that’s sort of the Nazi POV, Ruben, in my opinion.

Report this
blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 9, 2011 at 9:42 am Link to this comment

RE: By Billy Pilgrim, November 9 at 6:27 am
          The CIA comments by Blogdog…

not comments, quotes - items about which we need not speculate, we have it from the source

moreover, consider adding National Propaganda Radio and Hypocrisy Now to your list; in particular in light of certain ‘untouchable’ issues (e.g. 9/11, the most heinous false flag provocation of all time, and the phony global war of terror it launched) and most recently both institution’s shamelessly uncritical regurgitation of NATO propaganda to launch and execute its neocolonial invasion of Africa

Report this
tocynic's avatar

By tocynic, November 9, 2011 at 9:32 am Link to this comment

Perhaps journalists should be licensed? Other professionals, doctors, lawyers, teachers, and accountants are, and many have oversight groups to chastize them for ethical misconduct.

I see little risk from freedom of speech issues, since they’re not telling the truth for the most part anyway.

Report this

By California Ray, November 9, 2011 at 9:27 am Link to this comment

Here’s one thing you won’t see on cable TV:  Uncle Sam owns and operates a vast and purely-socialist health care delivery system (hospitals and clinics) that actually works.

It is not a fee-for-service system.  Rather, the beating heart of that system is government ownership, not business or private enterprise.

Socialized medicine in the U.S.A.?  Impossible, right?
This seems to go against the free-enterprise model and pretty much everything America stands for; so it would be news if it were true, right?

Is it newsworthy?  No, it is the Veterans Health Administration.

Report this

By California Ray, November 9, 2011 at 9:12 am Link to this comment

When it came free of charge and there were no subscription fees, TV was heavily criticized because it allowed John Q. Public to see the Vietnam War in all its criminal and immoral particulars.

Now most television programs are supplied for a price, and John Q. Public is shockingly uninformed.

When it comes to information, these days, you don’t get what you pay for.

Report this

By Exponus, November 9, 2011 at 9:05 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Who, what, when and where—reporting, news.  Why and how—editiorial, opinion.

Report this

By California Ray, November 9, 2011 at 8:50 am Link to this comment

How many newspapers, television news shows, etc., examined America’s use of force against Iraq in the context of international law?

It can justly be said that the biggest casualty of the Iraq War was Uncle Sam’s respect for international law.  Congress authorized a preventive attack on a weaker nation in clear violation of international law, including the UN Charter which the U.S. had vowed to observe and uphold.

Sadly, this point was seldom raised in the U.S. news media before, during, or after the Iraq War.  More often, the U.S. media acted as a conduit for President Bush’s wildly nonsensical argument that, by attacking Iraq, the U.S. was upholding the integrity of the UN Security Council.

Report this
D.R. Zing's avatar

By D.R. Zing, November 9, 2011 at 8:38 am Link to this comment

At a glance, my freakishly bad vision told me this
article was written by Eugene Robinson. What a mistake
that was! 

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, November 9, 2011 at 7:16 am Link to this comment

You don’t need agitprop—you’ve already got plenty.  The question is whose.

However, even purely descriptive material must be derived from finite, particular perceptions, and must be framed in some system of understandings and values to make any sense, which render the profession of complete objectivity highly questionable, if not a sure sign of deception.

Report this

By Marian Griffith, November 9, 2011 at 6:58 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

@OzarkMichael
—-Away with Objectivivity! We need agitprop—-

Agitprop would be a welcome breath of fresh air in the dank atmosphere of mainstream media. Which tells more about the msm than it does about the desirability of agitprop…

However, Objectivity is not “presenting all opinions” but simply “not letting your personal opinion colour or taint the presentation of facts as they can be determined”.

Of course it is ironic to discuss objectivity on a political blog, which is about the diametrical opposite of objectivity.

Report this
Billy Pilgrim's avatar

By Billy Pilgrim, November 9, 2011 at 6:27 am Link to this comment

The CIA comments by Blogdog appear to have been
incorporated into the raison d’etre of Fox News not to
mention other phony objective news organizations like
the Times, Washington Post, CNN, etc. I’m not sure
about MSNBC; however, they too must be considered with
a jaundiced eye.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 9, 2011 at 6:25 am Link to this comment

Away with Objectivivity! We need agitprop!

Report this
David J. Cyr's avatar

By David J. Cyr, November 9, 2011 at 5:55 am Link to this comment

QUOTE, Ruben Luengas:

“Those who hold political and economic power are very comfortable with the journalists who claim to be neutral and objective.”
____________________

Yes, the journalistic norm is the creation of “both sides” stories — corporate-state myths that falsely portray the corporate party’s (R) & (D) factions as having different goals… while imposing a blackout on coverage of non-corporate alternatives.

Objectively, the corporate party’s rash Republicans do carelessly seek immediate catastrophe in their time.

However, the corporate party’s Democrats also seek the same catastrophic strategic goals that Republicans do, but the intelligent liberals do so patiently, circuitously, incrementally, cold-bloodedly, in hopes that the consequences of liberal managed corporate catastrophes will fall upon future generations — not their own.

“Democrats are the meanest bunch of motherfuckers I’ve ever come across.”
— James Ridgeway, former Washington correspondent for The Village Voice

Voter Consent Wastes Dissent:

http://chenangogreens.org/home/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=498&Itemid=1

Report this

By ardee, November 9, 2011 at 5:51 am Link to this comment

“Free access to information is the oxygen of Democracy”.

The inanity of the comment of Ozark Michael, an increasingly irrelevant contributor notwithstanding, the media has demonstrated a right wing bias, one that increases. Some of this may be due to the ownership of said media by fewer corporations, thus a sameness of reportage is found across the board.

Some is the result of news becoming a profit center. It was only a few decades ago when the news depts. of our TV and radio networks were considered a “loss leader”, a public service exempt from the demands for profitability. That is no longer the case.

It is important to add that I find truth to be rather persistent, and it still can be found by those who consider it important, but the search becomes more difficult as this trending towards reporting only quotes and opinions sans attribution rather than the real journalism of investigation is more common.

Report this
EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, November 9, 2011 at 4:30 am Link to this comment

@ amongthepeople

A tricky presumption on your part, but in the cause of being open minded, perhaps not without some credibility.

Is a person to (purposefully or otherwise) entirely forget his or her knowledge of past situations and developing developments???

This is the crux of the biscuit.

Report this

By amongthepeople, November 9, 2011 at 4:02 am Link to this comment

Actually, objectivity is a matter of being open-minded
and seeing things without prejudging or bias.

Report this
blogdog's avatar

By blogdog, November 9, 2011 at 1:33 am Link to this comment

3 things to never forget:

1. “Deception is a state of mind and the mind of the state.” - James Jesus
Angelton - Director of CIA Counter Intelligence (1954-74)

2. “The Central Intelligence Agency owns everyone of any significance in the major
media.” - William Colby - Director of the CIA (1973-76)

3. “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the
American public believes is false.” — William J. Casey, Director of the CIA (1981 -
1987)

Report this

By Rescoldo, November 9, 2011 at 12:18 am Link to this comment

“Balance and objectivity” has always been used by the media to suppress the truth and silence the voices of dissent.
We should be thankful to have a journalist like Ruben Luengas, that as early as 2002 was the almost lone voice denouncing the upcoming aggression to Irak as a sham.
It is obvious that OzarkMichael does not get it. Or maybe he does: he probably works for Fox News.

Report this

By Wildeye, November 8, 2011 at 9:50 pm Link to this comment

The irony is that the very idea of a completely “objective” journalist obviates the need for a journalist; a stenographer would serve just as well, if not better, to fulfill the ideal. Or maybe that’s the idea…

Report this

By Mina Tepes, November 8, 2011 at 7:27 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I’m fortunate enough to know three languages and I’m able to view Mr. Luengas on
Telemundo to find out what is really going on in the news in the US plus around the
world. I am on his Facebook and enjoy the many commentaries from him, his staff and
the many followers. I’m glad to see his audience grow. Mr. Luengas keep up your
integrity, honesty,  humility, and charisma.

Report this

By rumblingspire, November 8, 2011 at 6:58 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“I contend that there was not even any coverage; instead, they had propaganda intended to stop other opinions from being voiced, turning the propaganda into “public opinion,” thanks to what Sigmund Freud’s nephew, Edward Bernays, a pioneer in the use of collective manipulation technique, called “the engineering of consent.” “

i remember bill o’reilly gloating in the immediate days before the bombing of Iraq, menacingly stating that opposition would be “shut up”.  thank goodness al frankin came along.  he was the first i remember to break the ice for the wider audience.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, November 8, 2011 at 6:53 pm Link to this comment

Here is how newpaper reports must be written:

“Hurray for the Left! Truth and Light shall be victorious!”

Go Go, agitprop!

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, November 8, 2011 at 6:38 pm Link to this comment

I am surprised, though, that the well-beaten dead horse of journalistic objectivity—off or not—has not remained dead.

Report this
EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, November 8, 2011 at 6:19 pm Link to this comment

The more I hear from Mr. Luengas, the more I like him, and the more I want to hear more (if that makes any sense).

He doesn’t beat off around the bush.

Report this
Newsletter

sign up to get updates


 
 
Right 1, Site wide - BlogAds Premium
 
Right 2, Site wide - Blogads
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 
 
 
Right Skyscraper, Site Wide
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 

A Progressive Journal of News and Opinion   Publisher, Zuade Kaufman   Editor, Robert Scheer
© 2014 Truthdig, LLC. All rights reserved.