1/12/2005

FAIR Media Action Alerts

Two good items from FAIR this week:
1. Media watchdog Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting asks people to encourage NBC Nightly News to expand its coverage of Social Security to include experts who believe Bush's claims of an imminent Social Security "crisis" are untrue.
2. Also, FAIR points out that from the media interest surrounding CBS's investigation into "Memogate," one would think that the credibility of the 60 Minutes report on Bush's National Guard service was the most pressing media issue facing the nation. In fact, the CBS review, headed by former Attorney General Dick Thornburgh (an appointee of Bush's father) was not able to state conclusively whether the documents were forgeries or not. The report also found no evidence that political bias was a factor in the network's journalism. Instead, the report documented a series of misjudgments on the part of several CBS
staffers. FAIR's position is that if "Memogate" had called attention to the general issue of credulous journalism, it would have performed a valuable service for the public. The hours of coverage of the Rather episode managed to ignore what should have been the central question: Did George W. Bush, in reality, properly fulfill his National Guard requirements? Because of
the focus on the CBS documents and the accompanying right-wing accusations of media bias on the issue, those stories-- and the important questions they raised-- were quickly dropped by a cowed press corps.
By contrast, other reporters have received much less scrutiny and punishment for offenses of far greater magnitude-- and with much more significant consequences to society. The New York Times, for example, published numerous allegations about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq that turned out to be false; the reporter most responsible for those stories, Judith Miller, was never sanctioned by the Times-- and indeed still continues to report on Iraq for the paper (and to show up as a guest on "Hardball").
FAIR says that The lesson of "Memogate" is that journalists may be punished for bad reporting-- if they have offended the wrong people. If they have merely helped steer the country into war under false pretenses, their careers can continue unimpeded.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry for off-topic comment, but I thought you might be interested. If you don't want Gonzales to be confirmed by the Senate link the phrase tortured logic to

http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2004/11/20041110-8.html

We are going to achieve a googlebomb

4:49 PM  

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