The Lincoln Plawg - the blog with footnotes

Politics and law from a British perspective (hence Politics LAW BloG): ''People who like this sort of thing...'' as the Great Man said

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Saturday, December 31, 2005

Judith Miller - well, well, well...


Miller is positively paleolithic; mentioned here just to note the Mnookin and Auletta pieces on 'The State of the Times.'

The affairs of the NSA bugging (NYT) and location of 'torture' camps (Post) seem to invite plus ├ža change comparisons with the way things were done in the good old Cold War days.

(And let's not forget CBS's compliance with a DOD request to delay its Abu Ghraib broadcast for two weeks.)

There has never been the slightest doubt (not since the days of Hearst and McCormick, at least) that the media has definitively picked sides. Not for every case - the NYT's vendetta against Clinton is an obvious exception to the rule. But the default - or knee jerk - decision is to go along with USG.

The current dudgeon is, therefore, strictly for the tourists.

(I finally got down the Edward R Murrow bio Prime Time during my layoff - the suits' gradual squeeze on CBS News, from the glory days of See It Now in the early 1950s to the I Love Lucy incident in 1966 that was the straw that broke Fred Friendly's back, is a catalogue of going along in the so-called Golden Age of Television.)


Has anyone produced an economic model of media insurgency?

Imagine the Post were to decide to treat USG as a hostile witness: no more anonymice, no more so-called objectivity. The SOTU on A1 factchecked line by line in the text with supporting facts in a sidebar and inside.

That sort of thing.

Could it be made to pay? My guess is not in a million years: the pressure on advertisers from USG and friends would be immense, a large contingent of subscribers would dump the paper straight off the bat, many key journos would take fright and jump ship.

It's a no-brainer.

So why do nice folks get conniptions when evidence emerges of USG and the Fourth Estate hand in glove - and hidden from view of the paying public?


While I'm recording URLs, not to miss Michael Massing's pieces The End of News? and The Enemy Within.

On a scan in their dead-tree versions, they seemed rather old hat for those following the US media scene with any attention. For story so far purposes in the future, they will likely prove invaluable.

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