Sunday, June 05, 2005

Pardon my skepticism

The American news media, the American people, and the Democratic Party paid almost no mind when the former director of the nation's most influential neo-conservative organization declared publicly that the Bush team put together a plan to attack Iraq shortly after they arrived in office in 2000. Paul O'Neill, former Secretary of the Treasury for Bush, has also served as Deputy Director of the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, Chairman and CEO of Alcoa, Vice President for Planning of International Paper Company, and as a board member of Eastman Kodak, Lucent Technologies, and the Rand Corporation. Not exactly the resume of a "disgruntled employee."

When Richard Clarke declared publicly that the Bush team put together a plan to attack Iraq shortly after they arrived in office in 2000, the American news media, the Ameican people, and the Democratic Party paid almost no mind. Clarke, who served in various posts in both the Department of State (Deputy Assistant Secretary for Intelligence, Assistant Secretary for Intelligence, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Politico Military Affairs) and the National Security Council (Special Advisor, National Coordinator for Security, Infrastructure Protection, and Counter-Terrorism, Chair of the Counter-Terrorism Group), also detailed the mind-boggling extent to which the FBI has bungled the U.S.'s counter-terrorism program.

Now along come the Downing Street Minutes, yet another disclosure of the Bush White House's early plan to attack Iraq. Once again, the American news media and the American public are ignoring the evidence. This time, however, the Democratic Party--at least some of it--has rolled over from its endless nap to acknowledge that something is amiss.

Will something come of it? The news media would have to cooperate, something it has not done since the election of 2000, when it conveniently forgot to talk about Bush's Texas record of mismangement, corruption, Constitution-bashing, and polluting.

The ruin of Texas, the insider trading, the geo-political ignorance, the intimidation of voters in Florida, the multiple lies to the American people, the poisoning of America through pollution and the destruction of the EPA, the war against women all over the world, the assaults against the Constitution, the huge boost for the ultra-wealthy at the expense of every other citizen, the tossing of crumbs at veterans...The Bush administration gotten away with all of this, and gotten away with it easily. What makes anyone think there will be any real opposition now?


I've been wondering the same thing. Maybe because those books were too long. Only a few hard core liberals even bothered to read them.

The memo, otoh, is relatively short and sweet. Easily emailed to your brother-in-law, for example. Nor is anyone making money off the memo unlike the books. (Although most Americans are sadly deluded in thinking authors rake in the dough.)

Best I can come up with, anyway.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:16 PM  

I agree with you about the issue of length and the perceived issue of profit. But the news media pretty much left the O'Neill and Clarke revelations alone, and all they had to do was quote one sentence in each book. They knocked it around a little, but the White House was careful to have a lot of "real" news going on so that the O'Neill and Clarke stuff got buried.

For a long time, I blamed Republican ownership of news outlets for the lack of news reporting. I still think that has a lot to do with it, but I am also convinced that most of the so-called newspeople are ignorant jackasses. All you have to do is watch CNN and MSNBC to understand that there is a significant IQ deficiency within the industry.

The September 11 event brought out the worst in everyone, creating so much "patriotism" that international politics now resembles a Texas football game, and guess we could have expected that.

By Blogger Diane, at 4:30 PM  

It's so frustrating and makes me feel so helpless that I am dedicating myself to emailing all the major tv stations' news programs asking them to investigate the Downing Street Memo every damn day.

Yes, it's my personal exercise, probably a useless one, but it makes me feel slightly better.

I sure agree with you about the laughable mental midgets that now read the news (and comment with their embarassingly ignorant views, and put their stupid words in their interviewees' mouths, and look like they've been dipped in plastic, sorry... I get carried away).

Paula Zahn is a terrific example of this. When she interviewed Ward Churchill, I nearly went mental and did actually chuck a pair of shoes at the TV.

It's not whether or not I agreed with Ward Churchill - but at least I understand what his comments meant. While he was attempting to explain exactly what he meant by his phrase "Little Eichmans" - which was that Eichman wasn't a hands-on murderer of Jewish people but worked in an administrative capacity, behind the scenes, so to speak, much like the Americans in the Twin Towers; and such work, whether blindly or not, for the corporations who are responsible for death & destruction around the globe, are as just as much to blame for the indirect murder of people just as Eichman was indirectly responsible for the deaths of Jews.

Churchill merely tried to explain how this sort of willful horrid treatment of others by this country, whose administration is funded by these corporations, could be one cause terrorism and that the impression of the rest of the world is that we are responsible for the deaths of many around the globe.

Anyway, that's pretty much what he was explaining when a frothing-mouthed Paula Zahn began cutting in, rudely interrupting (she was actually turning a shade of red) contesting him using emotional outbursts about how many people's feelings he hurt without bothering to respond to even ONE of his points.

The concept of what he was actually saying was so beyond her limited intellect that the interview was beyond a train wreck. Churchill just ended up shrugging and staring blankly - I honestly think even he was shocked by her complete lack of comprehension. And this brand of 'interview' goes on all day every day ad nauseum on every major news channel... ugh.

I abhor this new brand of "newspeople." Remember the good ol' days when interviewers actually existed that DIDN'T put words in the mouth of his guest, and actually participated in a rational discourse?

Ahhh, those were the days.....

By Blogger Unknown, at 12:21 PM  

The strange thing about Paula Zahn is that when she worked for Fox, she actually acted like she had a brain.

I read on a message board the other day that the poster was very well acquainted with a reporter for a major international news group, and when s/he asked the reporter what her organization was doing with the Downing Street Minutes, she said she didn't know what they were and had never heard of them.

By Blogger Diane, at 12:30 PM  

Gee what a surprise. Well, if anyone is interested, here is the Zahn/Churchill transcript. I find it a really fun read and am amazed CNN even let it be aired:


By Blogger Unknown, at 5:52 PM  

My first response is "What an idiot." But to be fair, I can't imagine any American news media figure, with the exception of those from Now and Rolling Stone handling the interview in anything but an idiotic way.

By Blogger Diane, at 6:13 PM  

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