Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Sweet Little Lies

Bob's been documenting the atrocities much longer than anyone else, so he knows who has cozied up to the main stream media:

Which brings us to the current problem—the problem of telling/not telling the truth. Do Broder and Toner believe that Clinton made that statement? Because two major journalists, in the past week, seemed to say that their colleagues have been lying when they make this claim.

First to expound was Richard Cohen, in the June 3 Washington Post. Cohen said this, explaining why he’d hated the Democratic campaign: “I hate that Clinton's observation that Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated in June ran on and on when everyone save some indigenous people in the Brazilian rain forest knew what she meant.” If Cohen is right, then Broder and Toner were simply lying in yesterday’s Times. (Neither scribe lives in Brazil.)

Second up was Michael Kinsley, who didn’t seem to hate the lying at all. On Sunday, he bravely said this in the New York Times, knowing that Kevin and Josh and Duncan and all good pseudo-liberal house-brokens have accepted this evil conduct for years: “[A]t the end, when her own clumsy comment about Bobby Kennedy being assassinated in June was willfully misinterpreted to suggest that she was wishing that fate on her opponent, it served her right.” If Kinsley’s implication is right, then Broder and Toner were “willfully misinterpreting” what Clinton had said.

Do you see the problem that develops when people like Kinsley and Cohen start telling the truth about not telling the truth? Cohen said the dissembling was wrong; Kinsley seemed to approve of the lying. But both men are veteran journalists; they have lived for decades at the top of the mainstream press pack. And both men seemed to think it was obvious that people like Broder and Toner are lying—simply lying in your faces—when they write bullsh*t like that.

Were John Broder and Robin Toner lying on Monday? That’s what Cohen and Kinsley seem to believe. Needless to say, housebroken boys on the liberal web will know they mustn’t discuss such matters. But do you see the problem that quickly arises when major journalists start telling the truth about not telling the truth?

Next question: Did journalists really think something was wrong with Bill Clinton’s statement in South Carolina? Or was that just a “willful misrepresentation” too? Do you see the problem that quickly arises when we’re told, by two major scribes, that their colleagues tell you things they don’t believe? When John Judis tells you what he did about his colleagues’ view of Obama?

Housebroken pool boys will know not to speak. Despite their long-standing willful silence, can you see the problem involved here?

The problem is telling the truth.

A lot of people mistakenly thought my post yesterday was about Obama, but they have misunderstood the point. It is about the so-called left that has forgotten how to tell the truth about politics.

The atrocities, as Bob Somerby keeps pointing out with far greater patience than I could have thought possible, are the lies and the acceptance of them, the excuses made for them and the way in which public figures profit from them.

Blogswarming the few places left that are critical of the campaign and trying to scream and bully the authors into silence does not change the facts. Tying to counter a lie with a lie does not cancel out the first one, it simply reinforces the original need for the facts.

A significant the difficulty the left has when combatting the right is trying to combat the casual lies spread with the voice of certainty by the MSM who get it handed to them on a silver platter by the noise machine. This time around, the left eagerly lapped it up, those claiming to be the most progressive, the most radical, the most hard-core, unwilling to tolerate the bullshit lefties, the first and most eager to get the goods from Drudge.

Does anyone see the political problem when you ally yourself with a media unwilling to tell the truth? And if this media then turns on you with the same methods and brutality it used on your opponent? What happens when the lies that advanced your original cause are exposed as lies and are used to paint you as deceitful and dishonest?



Shainzona said...

Speaking of sweet little lies...I am outraged at the unified effort of Obama and Friends to intrude in our civil discussion here...and elsewhere.

We have people stealing e-mail identities and then group-grope messages (see "Colleen" in your previous post - adopting the persona of a "Military Mom") - as if these messages will somehow convince us to vote for someone who is simply an empty suit.

Hey...it's NOT going to happen. In fact it just makes me more convinced at what a loser Obama is.

The lies and trickery and fraud continues and I am sick and tired of no one in the MSM addressing it. This latest effort is a serious problem - forget it deals with HRC supporters - for all internet users.

And it is official BS from BO.

Wow. What a candidate!

lakelobos said...

The Daily Howler latest post does provide a ray of hope. It talk about Cohen and Kinsley that, in their convoluted way, do call the lies and speak the truth in their strange way.

BTD still claims that Obama is the media darling. Since I don't read papers or watch TV news and talk shows, I cannot challenge him despite the fact that I know that most of the media is right wing or downright stupid and, therefore will support McCain. Furthermore, the historic record doesn't support BTD.

I don't believe that the so-called Obama lefties know that they are lying. It is similar to a heavily drug person committing a major crime. Both lost their judgment and are totally impaired.

The Obama goons are Obama-comatose and when the media suddenly will turn on them, they will feel betrayed, abandoned and dejected. They will not attribute it to their own lies.

History is replete with examples of the Obama goons behavior. When Nazi Germany lost the war, untold number of Nazis continued to believe in the F├╝rher. Franco has died in 1975 but many Fracoists are still active in Spain.

Way too many nations have a precious one whose name is used for lies and worse. The Obama goons are not a new phenomenon.

Cathy said...

The problem lies that too many journalists, bloggers, and Obamaphiles have no perspective. Most have no respect for history, no contact with different viewpoints, and no recognition of their own limitations.

But I'm torn as to the effect of this problem. Yes, the "media" took Hillary down this election by apparently denying her the nomination. But the voters still choose her. They won't poll her numbers any more but I have not seen Obama's go up in any significant manner. That means he's not pulling her voters over.

In the Old Soviet Union, most folks ignored Pravada and official government pronouncements. Here most do as well, though it's unclear if it's lack of time, lack of interest, or lack of trust. I used to believe that it was the first two, but now I'm seeing number three rising up the list.

That doesn't rob us of our responsibility to call out the worst offenders. But maybe we need to reconsider some weapons. Hillary really played to local tv/radio in the states she swept. Obviously cost control played a big factor. But it also probably helped cement her support since more people identify with local anchors over soulless national news that only seems to involve folks screaming at each other.

If we are going to survive a Bush or Obama presidency, we will have to build local grassroots effort since national party gone. It's too easy to have national groups (blogs, Air America) coopted.

ex-pat said...

“Although blasphemous, immoral, treasonable, schismatical, seditious or scandalous libels are punishable by the English law . . . the liberty of the press, properly understood, is by no means infringed or violated. The liberty of the press is essential to the nature of a free state; but this consists in laying no previous restraint upon publications, and not in freedom from censure for criminal matter when published. Every freeman has an undoubted right to lay what sentiments he pleases before the public. To forbid this is to destroy the freedom of the press; but if he publishes what is improper, mischievous or illegal, he must take the consequences of his own temerity. To subject the press to the restrictive power of a licenser as was formerly done, is to subject all freedom of sentiment to the prejudices of one man, and make him the arbitrary and infallible judge of all controverted points in learning, religion and government." Sir William Blackstone

What Blackstone meant by “blasphemous, immoral, treasonable….” was of course, anything the crown or the government deemed it to be and he was no advocate for free speech for the common populace. The First Amendment, ratified in 1791, incorporated
Blackstone’s theory and was arguably, the beginning of the end of what many Americans understood freedom of speech to mean and led to the passing of the Alien Sedition Acts in 1798.

Jefferson struggled with the First Amendment and although he was apt to rail against “the licentiousness of the press” and according to Geoffrey Stone, once observed that a
few strategic prosecutions of prominent editors would have a “wholesome effect in restoring the integrity of the presses”. What Jefferson wished above all is that a free press would present a barrier to government encroaching on the rights of the populace.

"No government ought to be without censors, and where the press is free, no one ever will. If virtuous, it need not fear the fair operation of attack and defence. Nature has given to man no other means of sifting out the truth whether in religion, law or politics. I think it as honorable to the government neither to know nor notice its sycophants or censors, as it would be undignified and criminal to pamper the former and persecute the latter." --Thomas Jefferson to George Washington, 1792. ME 8:406

In essence, A man may be allowed to keep poisons in his closet, but not publicly to vend them as cordials.

Most people, including most journalists, would be at a loss to explain the meaning of a ”free press” today. With the cost-cutting decimation of regional and urban print media, the internet was hailed as the godsend of free expression - perhaps it started that way, but it has devolved, with a few notable exceptions, into “The Lord of the Flies”, warring packs trading in lies, rumours and innuendoes, watch dog pamphleteers turned hunt and attack dog propagandists. Together with the incestuous corporate media, television and print they tell us what to wear, what to weigh and who to vote for, and the public, no longer able to discern, and in
spite of whopping percentages of said public saying that they do not trust the media, continue to watch and read in record numbers. The Fourth Estate is still, what Henry Fielding said it was in 1752 “a mob”. I

A man may be allowed to keep poisons in his closet, but not publicly vend them as cordials.

You and Somerby and the few others of your caliber, cannot do this alone…as Gina Gershon succinctly says in The Daily Howler’s video link, “these - these journalists are not accountable for anything.” Until they own that their closet poison is being publicly sold as cordial and risk their multi-million dollar careers, they will remain unaccountable. My hope is not large.

femB4dem said...

What I don't get is how the same voices that cried out in the wilderness that the media helped lie us into Iraq (Judy Miller, anyone?), were so willing to embrace that same media when it embraced Obama. I read a comment somewhere today that if Obama said let's stay in Iraq for 100 years, the blogger boyz would all jump to, telling us what a visionary idea it is, and crying out what is wrong with the rest of us who don't see it as visionary. Even worse, the mainstream media would agree -- best speech since Lincoln, best idea since sliced bread. UGH. Is this what happens when a nation falls for a personality cult? We can only hope that the great mass of Americans who do not blog, and who pay little attention to the media, will save us in November.

Clare said...

Honestly, Clinton was not my idea of a good candidate. I was hoping the Dems would come up with a better idea. Really.
But! When I looked on the "progressive" blogs for the communal commentary I found...hatred!
I was appalled by the vitrolic commentary which so often echoed the previously-decried rightwing narratives. Whoa!
I just couldn't support any candidacy that brought out such poison in its supporters. You don't have to be a Bible reader to know that "by their fruits ye shall know them".
That's as valid now as it has ever been, and like the Golden Rule, has a variant in every belief system.
Clinton benefitted from this in that she got a second look from me. As it turned out, her campaign style definitely got stronger. The "fake" Hillary image that I disliked was replaced by the genuine strong clear voice speaking for policies that make sense to me.