Online Journal
Front Page 
 Special Reports
 News Media
 Elections & Voting
 Social Security
 Editors' Blog
 Reclaiming America
 The Splendid Failure of Occupation
 The Lighter Side
 The Mailbag
 Online Journal Stores
 Official Merchandise
 Progressive Press
 Barnes and Noble
 Join Mailing List

News Media Last Updated: Jun 29th, 2006 - 00:57:20

The big brouhaha over nothing has ominous overtones
By Bev Conover
Online Journal Editor & Publisher

Jun 29, 2006, 00:54

Email this article
 Printer friendly page

Oh my, the big, bad New York Times did it again. It revealed another sleazy Bush not-so-secret secret snooping operation and the sky will surely fall this time. Or will it?

The only thing that may fall is a free press and we have the corporate-owned media to thank for that. By sucking up to and rolling over for the dictatorial Bush regime and its minions in Congress, instead of being the people's watchdogs and telling them the truth, the corporate media have put us all in jeopardy and now find themselves the object of condemnation and threats of prosecution under the Espionage Act of 1917. Today, it's the NYT. Tomorrow, it could be any one of us who shed light on the Bushies' machinations and abuse of power.

The NYT should take note of how the Bush regime, the GOP and the neocons thank their friends. There might have been no illegal attack on Iraq if it had not been for the NYT. It was the NYT, after all, that printed every lie and exaggeration about Saddam Hussein and weapons of mass destruction fed by Ahmed Chalabi, Dick Cheney and the neocons ensconced in Donald Rumsfeld's secret Office of Special Plans to reporter Judith Miller.

We have said many times that being a friend to the Bushes is perilous to your well-being. Congresswoman and former Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris, who was instrumental in helping George W. steal the White House in 2000, is finding that out. The Bush brothers, George and Jeb, instead of even pretending to offer her a hand up in her bid for the US Senate, have tossed her over the side.

Could the Gray Lady have learned its lesson? With Miller and former publisher Arthur Sulzberger, Jr., gone, might Executive Editor Bill Keller have had an attack of journalistic ethics and decided to live up to his First Amendment responsibilities? After all, while the cretins in Congress are as contemptuous of the US Constitution as the wannabe dictator in the White House, the press is the only private enterprise mentioned in the whole document and given special status by the First Amendment: "Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press . . ."

But the Congress critters, who have turned a blind eye to Bush's trashing of the Constitution, when they aren't aiding and abetting his treasonous desires and actions, don't get it. Instead, they bluster about revealing secrets in "wartime" and join Bush's jihad on the press.

Said Bush Monday, after calling the publishing of an alleged leak about the US snooping through personal international banking transactions "disgraceful," �We�re at war with a bunch of people who want to hurt the United States of America, and for people to leak that program, and for a newspaper to publish it, does great harm to the United States of America,�

Let's get a few things straight. First, according to Wayne Madsen, the "monitoring of SWIFT [Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, the world's largest financial communication network] by the National Security Agency (NSA)" has been going on for nearly two decades. "The Bush administration has expanded the program to monitor transactions involving smaller monetary transfers."

Now that may not make the Europeans very happy and Belgium has launched an investigation to determine "if the interests of certain Belgian nationals were possibly affected and if Belgian law was respected.'' And that won't make Bush very happy.

Second, Congress has issued no declaration of war -- not on Afghanistan, not on Iraq, not on a metaphor, such as a "war on terror" or a "war on terrorism." Congress abrogated its oath to uphold the constitution by allowing Bush to illegally attack two defenseless countries that posed no harm to us; by funding his illegal wars of aggression; by acquiescing in his disregard for the Geneva Conventions in the incarceration and treatment of prisoners; by stripping Americans of their rights via the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act, also know as the USA PATRIOT Act that has nothing to do with patriotism. And every member who voted for any or all of the above should stand trial, along with Bush and his whole regime, as war criminals.

Third, as Glenn Greenwald has documented, "There is not a single sentence in the Times banking report that could even arguably 'help the terrorists.'"

Greenwald noted, "George Bush and his allies in the right-wing media (such as at National Review) have been running around for the last several years boasting about the administration's programs for tracking terrorists and innovating our surveillance methods. In doing so, they have repeatedly -- and in detail -- told the public, and therefore The Terrorists, all sorts of details about the counter-terrorism programs we have implemented, including -- from the President's mouth himself -- programs we have for monitoring international banking transactions." Yes, it's much ado about nothing.

The great harm to the United States of America is being done by the criminal Bush administration, its sycophants in Congress and the courts, and the corporate media that have given them all a free pass.

Might the day of free passes be over or will the corporate media plead for their lives and promise to be good kiddies?

Copyright © 1998-2006 Online Journal
Email Online Journal Editor

Top of Page

News Media
Latest Headlines
Sebastian Mallaby�s distortions of what �every honest politician knows�
Mike Malloy is b-a-a-a-a-c-k
Bush�s absolute power grab
Truthiness and lies
The message will out
Wars and propaganda machines
Murdoch almighty: When public loses opinion
Ten anti-Castro "journalists" in South Florida on US government payroll
Keith Olbermann's finest hour
The art of lap dining: More from the liberal [sic] media
All the news that fits the Bush agenda
Out to lunch
Millbank launches attack on White House Press Corps veteran Helen Thomas
Kevin Barrett responds to Bill O'Reilly death threat
Free speech marked for death
Racism plagues Western media coverage
Israel�s shameful attack on Gaza
The big brouhaha over nothing has ominous overtones
Some might call it treason: An open letter to Salon
Open letter to the Canadian mainstream media