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View Diary: Mitch McConnell campaign bans reporter from their events. It isn't going well. (122 comments)

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  •  First Amendment doesn't guarantee access (0+ / 0-)

    It only guarantees the right to speak and write about the fact that you were denied access.

    "The great lie of democracy, its essential paradox, is that democracy is the first to be sacrificed when its security is at risk. Every state is totalitarian at heart; there are no ends to the cruelty it will go to to protect itself." -- Ian McDonald

    by Geenius at Wrok on Wed Mar 19, 2014 at 04:02:40 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Freedom of the Press? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Patango

      Singling out any reporter violates that.

      •  No it does not (0+ / 0-)

        Seriously, go read the First Amendment again and then come back and discuss.

        Freedom of the press is exactly and literally about the freedom TO PRINT, which in this day and age would include a wider variety of outlets that gets words and pictures out into the hands of citizens.

        Do not confuse that with the clause about freedom to assemble. They are separate rights and each is very specific. The freedom to assemble does not mean that reporters have the absolute right to crash a private event on private property.

        All that said, this incident does seem to violate the spirit of the law. Corporations and government officials have been "media trained" to the nth degree that they strategically try to blackmail reporters into reporting only agreeable stories, otherwise their access will be removed. And it is perfectly legal. Their PR advisers consider it a feature, not a bug, of the First Amendment.

        Many of us old-timers remember when reporters were the ones that had the upper hand. Government officials were obliged to not exclude based on the content of what a reporter wrote because otherwise they would be publicly shamed. Back in those days there was, minimally, a morning and evening paper delivered to almost every doorstep in every small town in America. People read.competing.news.papers. Then they watched Walter Cronkite on TV, who tried and mostly succeeded at following both spirit and letter of the Fairness Doctrine as it pertained to broadcast news.

        We live in a different world now. Reporting is still a badly paid profession but now it is being destroyed by the big corporations that own most media outlets. People don't read as much and they dislike being exposed to facts that contradict their political world view. So reporters that want to keep their jobs and their access are mostly stenographers.

        Corporations will not stop until they've abused or corrupted every amendment in the US Bill of Rights. And they will use and abuse the press as their main methodology (propaganda.) Public officials like McConnell are merely following SOP for the "new media" that these corporations have established. It's pathetic and alarming and very depressing. But it's (sadly) not unconstitutional.

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