I heard this on our local university station recently and missed taping it. When looking for something else, up pops this lecture on media and their role.
http://184.108.40.206/search?q=cache:ixG ... cd=4&gl=ca
This is the text of John Pilger’s speech at theChicago Socialism 2007 Conference on SaturdayJune 16 2007The paperback edition of his latest book, FreedomNext Time, has recently been published by BlackSwan.© John PIlger 2007Find more essays & book excerpts from John Pilgerat http://www.coldtype.net/pilgerbooks.html
Freedom Next Time
The title of this talk is Freedom Next Time, which is the title of my book,and the book is meant as an antidote to the propaganda that is so oftendisguised as journalism. So I thought I would talk today about journal-ism, about war by journalism, propaganda, and silence, and how thatsilence might be broken. Edward Bernays, the so-called father of pub-lic relations, wrote about an invisible government which is the true rul-ing power of our country. He was referring to journalism, the media. That was almost 80 years ago, not long after corporate journalism was invented. It is a history few journalist talk about or know about, and it began with the arrival of corporate advertising. As the new corporations began taking over the press, something called“professional journalism” was invented. To attract big advertisers, the new corporate press had to appear respectable, pillars of the establishment – objective, impartial, balanced. The first schools of journalism were set up, and a mythology of liberal neu-trality was spun around the professional journalist. The right to freedom of expres-sion was associated with the new media and with the great corporations, and the whole thing was, as Robert McChesney has put it so well, “entirely bogus”.For what the public did not know was that in order to be professional, journalists had to ensure that news and opinion were dominated by official sources, and that has not changed. Go through the New York Times on any day, and check the sources of the main political stories – domestic and foreign – you’ll find they’re dominated by government and other establishment interests. That is the essence of professional journalism. I am not suggesting that independent journalism was or is excluded, but it is more likely to be an honorable exception. Think of the role Judith Miller played in the New York Times in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq. Yes, her work became a scandal, but only after it played a powerful role in promoting an invasion based onlies. But Miller’s parroting of official sources and vested interests was not all that dif-ferent from the work of many famous Times reporters, such as the celebrated W.H.Lawrence, who helped cover up the true effects of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima in August, 1945. “No Radioactivity in Hiroshima Ruin,” was the headline on his report, and it was false. -............<snip>............So, a pattern was set. Impartiality was a principle certainly: a principle to be sus-pended whenever the establishment was under threat. And that principle has been upheld ever since.
This goes on to describe the role media played in history and also a detailed description of the lead up to the Iraq war 2, how MI6 was feeding the info but that was totally unnecessary because the media could have handled it all by itself. A little long, but an excellent read from-
John Pilger is a world-renowned journalist, author and documentary filmmaker, who began his career in 1958 in his homeland, Australia, before moving to London in the 1960s.
He regards eye-witness as the essence of good journalism. He has been a foreign correspondent and a front-line war reporter, beginning with the Vietnam war in 1967. He is an impassioned critic of foreign military and economic adventures by Western governments.
"It is too easy," he says, "for Western journalists to see humanity in terms of its usefulness to 'our' interests and to follow government agendas that ordain good and bad tyrants, worthy and unworthy victims and present 'our' policies as always benign when the opposite is usually true. It's the journalist's job, first of all, to look in the mirror of his own society."
Hopefully this is someone who we can trust and can't be corrupted.