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View Diary: CBS has just curled up and died (161 comments)

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  •  Court Decisions in the 80's/90's Made It (19+ / 0-)

    impractical to conduct investigative journalism against businesses. And if news organizations go up too hard against government, they lose access.

    The American free press concept doesn't work, it can't work in our kind of system.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed Dec 04, 2013 at 08:26:34 AM PST

    •  Note sure I agree about the government angle (7+ / 0-)

      While the liability decisions might have made it no longer cost-effective to do investigative journalism directed at private industry, I don't think I agree about the government side of it.

      I'm pretty sure that Dick Nixon wasn't inviting Woodward and Bernstein to golf weekends, but that didn't prevent them from digging up the facts and reporting them. In any organization as large and diverse as the federal government there are always going to be sources who will provide information to the media, as long as somebody is looking for them. You can get the press briefing information from the video feed if you think it's worthwhile, and I guarantee that nobody in a truly sensitive position is going to tell a journalist something just because the journalist is polite.

      Personally, I think the real issue is that the media outlets are no longer primarily driven by reporting actual news. Since the internet has made most reporting a commodity there isn't much drive to develop your own material, and if you have a corporate umbrella you don't even have to turn a profit. GE has a nice PR firm in the guise of NBC and can put out (or suppress) whatever stories they need to make the overall enterprise more profitable.

      •  Watergate pre-dated the 80's & 90's (14+ / 0-)

        And the absurdity of the new & improved White House Correspondent's Extravagaza every year just reinforces in my mind how much "access" is valued these days. Reporters seem to be beguiled by the perks of being "in" with the right crowd, as opposed to skulking around in the shadows trying to expose the rot that lies within. They just appear, for the most part, to revel in it along with the scoundrels they are supposed to be keeping "honest".

        As for whistle-blowers in government - the present administration has an awful record on that account.

        Our "news" media has long ago ceased to be the watchdog the public needs. Infotainment is about the best that be said about most of it.

        "one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm, and three or more is a congress" -- John Adams

        by blue armadillo on Wed Dec 04, 2013 at 09:16:06 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I agree that it's been a long time (5+ / 0-)

          I was in 5th grade when the Watergate hearings were on TV and I remember being fascinated by them. First, my younger self knew that Nixon was a Bad Guy, partly because my Momma would never have voted for him and partly because even I could see the 5 o'clock shadow on our cheap TV.

          I remember back in Gulf War I when there were a few intrepid reporters who decided to head out cross-country to get reporting that was potentially more accurate than that delivered by the embedded journalists. At the time I thought that they were both crazy (given the danger) and essential to getting the story out. Unfortunately they were still overwhelmed by reporting of Iraqis stealing incubators, but at least somebody was trying to commit journalism.

    •  It's a two way street. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      If pols want their stories bullshit lies spread to the American people they have to go to the media. Access works both ways. It's long past time the media took back their power.

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