Friday, June 28, 2013

American Pravda

Trey Smith

The Edward Snowden leaks have revealed a U.S. corporate media system at war with independent journalism. Many of the same outlets — especially TV news — that missed the Wall Street meltdown and cheer-led the Iraq invasion have come to resemble state-controlled media outlets in their near-total identification with the government as it pursues the now 30-year-old whistleblower.

While an independent journalism system would be dissecting the impacts of NSA surveillance on privacy rights, and separating fact from fiction, U.S. news networks have obsessed on questions like: How much damage has Snowden caused? How can he be brought to justice?

Unfazed by polls showing that half of the American rabble — I mean, public — believe Snowden did a good thing by leaking documentation of NSA spying, TV news panels have usually excluded anyone who speaks for these millions of Americans. Although TV hosts and most panelists are not government officials, some have a penchant for speaking of the government with the pronoun “We.”
~ from Snowden Coverage: If US Mass Media Were State-Controlled, Would They Look Any Different? by Jeff Cohen ~
I grew up watching Walter Cronkite and Huntley-Brinkley.  I couldn't wait to read the morning and evening editions of the Kansas City Star newspaper.  News reporting was different back then.  Reporters actually challenged government pronouncements.  Imagine that!

I must admit that these days there are almost no mainstream sources that interest me anymore.  They just repeat government talking points.  If I do happen to read or watch them, I discount about 90 percent of what they have to say.

The newspaper I read most often now is The Guardian (which includes the magnificent Glenn Greenwald).  Other news sites I frequent include David Sorota's columns at Salon.com, CounterPunch, The Smirking Chimp, This Can't Be Happening, Conor Friedersdorf at The Atlantic, Matt Taibbi at Rolling Stone and, of course, The Young Turks.  In addition, there are numerous other sites and writers I check in with less frequently.

I'm not interested in what almost amounts to state-run media.  What about you?

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