Saturday, September 17, 2005
GenderGappers 2005 - 038
Arguably, one of the most important and jaw dropping occurrence regarding the media has been sadly overlooked as the horrors of Katrina occupies the attention of almost everybody. Initially it did have a great effect – many people were so surprised that they did a double take, especially when tuning in to FOX News.
Some even wondered if the end of the world was coming. Even members of the media were aghast. That is, until they slowly comprehended that gosh oh gee, that is what reporting the news is all about. That is journalism. That is what reporters are supposed to do – hunt down the facts and present all the information to the American public.
NBC’s Brian Williams noted that a lasting legacy of Katrina for journalists may be the end of an unusual four year period of deference to people in power. Most of the rest of us were first astounded and then delighted to see the former hoards of media suck-ups actually go after the Bushies hammer and tongs.
It seems that reporters were seeing things that they could not justify by the Republican Party line; things that caused them to start thinking like journalists and for the first time in many years they started working on behalf of their country, not as sycophants of Bush-Power. Nothing like close contact with human misery and death to sound a wake-up call.
Embedded and secluded as they were, and still are, in Afghanistan and Iraq, reporters never seemed to get the full force of the horror of these Bush wars, but they “got it” in New Orleans. Remember how every appointment or nomination by President Clinton was vetted by the media to find and expose every item in the past of these people?
We have just been shown a fresh example of how the press has been laying down on the job for six years. We learned that the former head of FEMA lied on his resume. The media never questioned or investigated but rather took the credentials of “Brownie” and every other appointment to be just what Bush declared them to be. Of course, it didn’t matter until Brown screwed up so badly with Katrina.
One can only hope that the media in its new found mission will now investigate the Bush government “without deference to people in power”. What of the other Bush appointees? Will a media that has located its testicles and taken its cranium out of its rectum continue to serve the American people or will it lapse back into its old lazy habits.
Democratic leaders must continue in the manner of Rep. Nancy Palosi and challenge reporters who take the Bush spin to be fact. Like Palosi, they should ask interviewing reporters if they are on the Bush payroll since they are espousing their causes.
Reporters showed us the facts, but the network and cable head-honchos are stillsucking on the Bush-Power teats. CNN’s Wolf regularly interviews people insisting that they “defend” why they embrace viewpoints that are contrary to the Republican Party line. Tim Russet, likewise -- unbelievable! Meanwhile, Chris Matthews wobbles on the fence.
Now that we have had one miracle, it’s time for another really big one. That is to destroy the secrecy that the Bushies have wrapped everything in to prevent us from knowing what is being done to us. Just as the Bush administration covered up the truth regarding the pollution of air and water caused by the attack on 9/11, it is now covering up the true facts regarding the air and water pollution in New Orleans.
So far we are prevented from learning the death toll and the true cost of Bush bungling because of his inept choices of leaders for EPA, Homeland Security or FEMA, for starters.
This invasive secrecy is terribly costly to every American and to the country and its environment. Now is the time for the media to stand up and continue to break down walls of silence and demand the truth. WE CAN HANDLE IT!
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