The Media Are Wrong Again
A TvNewsLIES Analysis of Media Neglect - October, 2005
The Emperor Has No Clothes!
The corporate media, in its haste to appear objective, has failed the public again.
On the morning of October 13th, the Emperor took off all his clothes in front of the entire nation. He stood stark naked in the illuminating glare of television cameras and an international video feed, This time, there was no one around to throw a cloak over his exposed nudity or to convince onlookers that he was really robed. This time, the Emperor had no clothes on at all, and everybody saw it.
This time, there was no way to spin the story. The entire nation had witnessed the staging of an ‘impromptu’ conversation between the President and a group of soldiers in Iraq. Under ordinary circumstances, it might have been an embarrassing exchange at best or an outrageous misuse of our troops at worst. But in this case, the careful orchestration had been caught on film, and the proverbial cat was out of the bag. The Emperor was stark naked and he had nowhere to run
And so, the media were forced to deviate from their normal mode. They could not possibly give George W. Bush a free pass on this story, because there was absolutely no way to camouflage the event. They had to report what was evident to everyone who saw it. They had report it fully, to but they didn’t. Once again, the media didn’t get it right.
The very next day, most of the corporate media made an attempt to cover the story. They accurately stated that the much hyped ‘conversation’ had been staged. Finally, an overt criticism of this President appeared on the front pages of newspapers around the country and was featured on the TV news networks. But, it was far from enough.
Still, the mere fact that the media reported a story critical of someone in the current administration caused quite a stir. Pundits and bloggers read all sorts of things into this rare occurrence. Some suggested that the media were jumping ship and abandoning a crumbling presidency. Others hoped that reporters and news anchors had undergone an epiphany of sorts, and had discovered some of their lost integrity. Still others simply stroked their chins in wonder and could offer no explanation at all.
The truth is that they simply had no choice. The story was out there and they were not going to be left behind. It was going to be the most discussed topic of the day, and not a single reporter worth his or her pay could ignore it. There is no reason in the world to attribute any altruistic or noble motive to anyone who reported the story, because not a single reporter deserves it.
On the contrary, the corporate news media, in its haste to appear objective, once again totally failed the public.
THE REAL STORY
What the media failed to do was report the real story that took place in Washington. The real story was not about an awkward and scripted photo op for the President. The story was not even about the shameful exploitation of American troops. The real story was the motive behind the event itself, and the lies that were so blatantly told once again. The real story, as is par for the course, was completely overlooked.
With his personal approval at an all time low, and with support for his war seriously waning, George Bush needed a new stunt. In its coverage of a trumped up ‘conversation’ with some troops in Iraq, he NY Times, like much of the media, reported that President Bush “sought and won the assurances [of the troops] that Iraqi forces are up to the job of helping American troops provide security for the voting there this weekend.”
THAT WAS A LIE, as was the entire dramatization.
Each and every scripted question was designed to LIE to the American people once again. The organizers could not even hold to the truth in selecting the soldiers who appeared on screen. Remember Master Sgt. Corine Lombardo who just happened to have met the President in NY after 9/11? Yeah, right. MediaCitizen.blogspot uncovered that she was no ordinary ‘grunt,’ as portrayed on the screen. It seems that Lombardo works in public affairs for the military as spokesperson to the media. Surprise, surprise.
Each smiling soldier was primed to tell the nation that things in Iraq were just wonderful. Not only were the Iraqi people a happy and eager lot, but they were safe as could be in the hands of well trained and in-charge Iraqi security forces. Heck, the Americans were only subsidiary forces, tagging along for the ride. Even more insulting to the intelligence of any viewer was the Iraqi soldier who was called upon to gush over the man who had foisted a war upon his nation. Undoubtedly speaking for all his comrades, this happy warrior thanked the President profusely. “I like you,” he assured George Bush. How touching that was.
The entire session was nothing more than a series of lies, lies, and more lies. It was set up to reinforce the false image of success that the media have nurtured all along. It was a publicity stunt that stepped over the bodies of the 3,663 Iraqis who were killed in war-related violence during the past six months alone! And it dishonored the sacrifices of life and limb demanded of our military every single day of this useless war.
That was the story that should have made headlines. The headshaking should not have been limited merely to this shoddy attempt at pretense and play-acting. The media had the responsibility to point out and challenge the use of taxpayer money to stage-manage an attempt to deceive the American people. They had an opportunity to report that the responses by the troops were fabricated propaganda, and little more. But they failed to do that, once again.
And in the end, despite the revelation that all was not quite what it seemed, the stunt worked after all. Americans were once again left with the outrageous impression that we are making progress in Iraq. There are no deaths, there is no bloodshed. Our troops are smiling and happy, and life is good. The war in Iraq is right on target and a rousing success. Lies, all lies.
The media owed us this one. They owed us big time for their complicity in the lies that led to the war in the first place. They owed us the truth by now. Instead, they ran a story about a half-clothed Emperor, and got it wrong again. In fact, the Emperor in the White House had no clothes on at all, and the media could have made that crystal clear.
But they chose not to. One has to wonder if they ever will.
From the Editor’s Blog: George W. Bush, the Pretend President - George W. Bush has not had an original thought since he was born. His policies are created for him by the Project for a New American Century. His words are prepared for him. His questions are prepared for him. His entire presidency is that of an actor that needs to be taught his lines and reminded of them prior to each scene. He requires the use of a teleprompter or an earpiece to make it through a scene. He needs to have the play constantly explained to him because he had not even read the screenplay prior to his audition and he still has not read it after the show has been running for 5 years. He still does not know enough about the production to explain it in detail, only in little general descriptions as if you are watching a commercial for a movie where the commercial never really tells you what the movie is about, only that it is exciting and it will scare you!. It’s pathetic, it’s outrageous, it’s criminal and it is a complete sham.