T Nation

Buying the War

This Wednesday night on PBS, Bill Moyers’ Journal looks at how the mainstream media was complicit in selling the war in Iraq to the American public.

Remember Bush’s fake press conference right before the initial invasion, where all the questions were pre-screened and only certain reporters were called on. Does anybody even remember that, now?

Obviously Bush Cheney Rumsfeld Powell and Rice bear most of the blame for getting us into an unneccessary and unwinnable war (as George Bush Senior correctly knew it would be). But the mainstream media also played a critical role in selling the war to the public, instead of asking the tough questions that should have been asked before the fact, not after the fact.

[i]Journalists were “shocked and traumatized by the atrocities of 9/11, of people hurling themselves out of 50-story windows in the World Trade Center,” PBS newsman Bill Moyers says. “Their natural response was to rally around the troops, make sure the commander-in-chief got the perpetrators.”

But that led most news organizations to “suspend their skepticism” of an administration bent on war in Iraq, he says, and that contributed to the “great blunder.”[/i]

http://www.usatoday.com/life/television/news/2007-04-22-bill-moyers_N.htm

Queue the idiots that refute that by denouncing the “liberal agenda” of the American media.

In 3, 2, 1 …

Even if we charitably assume the idea was true, it would take an objective journalist to credibly attack subjective, agenda-driven journalism.

Bill Moyers does not have that credibility.

[quote]lixy wrote:
Queue the idiots that refute that by denouncing the “liberal agenda” of the American media.

In 3, 2, 1 …[/quote]

The do not really have a liberal agenda they just accept the status quo as God given, realists, i.e. mindless conformist corporate drones, that they are.

Since socialism was the collectivist pseudo religious fad of the 20th century they tend to see constructivist government interventions as the allmost natural order of things.

So in a way they have a liberal agenda by reflecting the views of societies elite.

[quote]thunderbolt23 wrote:
Even if we charitably assume the idea was true, it would take an objective journalist to credibly attack subjective, agenda-driven journalism.

Bill Moyers does not have that credibility.[/quote]

So you believe everything that the Bush administration told us about Iraq before we went, they believed themselves with the utmost certainty?

[quote]thunderbolt23 wrote:
Bill Moyers does not have that credibility.[/quote]

Bullshit. Moyers is one of America’s most respected journalists.

Oh sure, the batshit insane Ann Coulter wing of the Republican Party can’t stand Moyers. Big deal, they are in the minority.

Normal people who aren’t mentally unbalanced seem to respect Moyers a whole lot.

He has received well over thirty Emmys and virtually every other major television journalism prize, including a gold baton from the Dupont Journalism awards, a lifetime Peabody award, and a George Polk Career Award (his third George Polk Award) for contributions to journalistic integrity and investigative reporting.

If you want to know why the Right Wing hates Moyers, it’s all right there in the Commentary section at that link…

[quote]Beowolf wrote:

So you believe everything that the Bush administration told us about Iraq before we went, they believed themselves with the utmost certainty?[/quote]

Huh? Where in my statement did I say that?

I said Moyers doesn’t have the credibility to undertake such an examination. No more, no less.

Learn to read. Seriously.

[quote]Brad61 wrote:

Bullshit. Moyers is one of America’s most respected journalists.

Oh sure, the batshit insane Ann Coulter wing of the Republican Party can’t stand Moyers. Big deal, they are in the minority.[/quote]

Who cares what Ann Coulter thinks? I don’t - I can’t stand Coulter. Do you have anything other than a straw man?

[quote]Normal people who aren’t mentally unbalanced seem to respect Moyers a whole lot.

He has received well over thirty Emmys and virtually every other major television journalism prize, including a gold baton from the Dupont Journalism awards, a lifetime Peabody award, and a George Polk Career Award (his third George Polk Award) for contributions to journalistic integrity and investigative reporting.

If you want to know why the Right Wing hates Moyers, it’s all right there in the Commentary section at that link…[/quote]

Yes, the commentary does enlighten the point - Moyers the “journalist” has already made up his mind politically. He won’t go into the examination objectively - he has an agenda. He doesn’t want to speak “truth” - he wants to “speak truth to power” and he starts with an ideological viewpoint and works backward.

Look at his wacky personal commentary - suggesting that if Kerry won the presidency in 2004, there would likley be a coup?

And you think he can report objectively on this topic?

Brad, you routinely set new lows for idiocy around here. Well done.

[quote]thunderbolt23 wrote:
Yes, the commentary does enlighten the point - Moyers the “journalist” has already made up his mind politically. He won’t go into the examination objectively - he has an agenda. He doesn’t want to speak “truth” - he wants to “speak truth to power” and he starts with an ideological viewpoint and works backward.
[…]
And you think he can report objectively on this topic? [/quote]

Given the guy’s stockpile of journalistic prizes, one would expect that he does indedd qualify as an objective reporter. In case you’re wondering, objectivity is the most important trait in his line of work and is supposed to correlate tighly with the prizes and recognition a journalist earns from the community and from his peers.

Try again.

Sigh.

[quote]lixy wrote:

Given the guy’s stockpile of journalistic prizes, one would expect that he does indedd qualify as an objective reporter. In case you’re wondering, objectivity is the most important trait in his line of work and is supposed to correlate tighly with the prizes and recognition a journalist earns from the community and from his peers.

Try again.[/quote]

Nonsense - tell me again how a biased reporter can objectively examine media bias?

You also make an interest choice of words - “one would expect” - yes, “one” would, but unfortunately, those expectations are dashed by the facts we have about Moyer and his ideological agenda.

His awards - whatever their worth - have nothing to do with what he is doing right now.

Dan Rather has his share of awards - if he did an examination of the Bush administration, would he be credible to do so?

Bothered that Brad took your award?

[quote]Brad61 wrote:
thunderbolt23 wrote:
Bill Moyers does not have that credibility.

Bullshit. Moyers is one of America’s most respected journalists.

[/quote]

Moyers has a medieval view of a modern capitalistic system. He blames ‘conspiracies’ when there’s nothing of the sort.

As economies develop, the typical worker who works with his back begins to lose out. Rewards begin more and more to be won by thinking. Witness the demise of our auto industry. The actuary wins over the assembly line worker. Those people who try to live w/o thinking are going to bitch and moan, and their voice is Bill Moyers: “Oh, the evil capitalists are ruining us!”

An advanced economy also has trouble competing with a young and growing economy, especially with regard to manual labor. Companies want to pay a Chinese person $3/day, as opposed to an American $20/hour. How is that a conscious conspiracy?

Mr. Moyers, to put it bluntly, is a microcosm of the hippie-dippy generation of the 60’s and 70’s, out to burn down the system because its ‘all evil’. He’s a clown.

[quote]brad61 wrote:
This Wednesday night on PBS, Bill Moyers’ Journal looks at how the mainstream media was complicit in selling the war in Iraq to the American public.

Remember Bush’s fake press conference right before the initial invasion, where all the questions were pre-screened and only certain reporters were called on. Does anybody even remember that, now?

Obviously Bush Cheney Rumsfeld Powell and Rice bear most of the blame for getting us into an unneccessary and unwinnable war (as George Bush Senior correctly knew it would be). But the mainstream media also played a critical role in selling the war to the public, instead of asking the tough questions that should have been asked before the fact, not after the fact.

[i]Journalists were “shocked and traumatized by the atrocities of 9/11, of people hurling themselves out of 50-story windows in the World Trade Center,” PBS newsman Bill Moyers says. “Their natural response was to rally around the troops, make sure the commander-in-chief got the perpetrators.”

But that led most news organizations to “suspend their skepticism” of an administration bent on war in Iraq, he says, and that contributed to the “great blunder.”[/i]

http://www.usatoday.com/life/television/news/2007-04-22-bill-moyers_N.htm[/quote]

Hello, bradley:

Nice try. Perhaps the journalists were like the majority of the rest of us. Perhaps they put two and two together.

Perhaps they realized that Iraq was and would always be a threat unless dealt with.

Oh, to think that Bush (who has always done media relations quite poorly) somehow “brainwashed” them, AGAIN shows this silly thing you dems have going on.

Bush is a moron in everything except selling the Iraq War.

So silly. So bradley.

On a side note, looks like Thunder is already slapping you around.

I ALMOST feel bad piling on.

JeffR

[quote]thunderbolt23 wrote:
His awards - whatever their worth - have nothing to do with what he is doing right now. [/quote]

On the contrary. His immaculate credentials give him plenty of authority to comment on the inner workings of a system he’s only too familiar with.

Strawman.

Re-Sigh.

[quote]lixy wrote:

On the contrary. His immaculate credentials give him plenty of authority to comment on the inner workings of a system he’s only too familiar with. [/quote]

I’ll remember that the next time I bring up Henry Kissinger to you.

Plus, awards don’t mean anything when he has already made it clear what his position is.

You can watch Moyers’ report all you want, that is fine - just don’t try and pretend that the report is some definitive piece of objective journalism giving us the unbiased “real truth” as to the state of media w/r/t Iraq.

If you want a real expose, you have to find someone who has the broad credibility to be fair and objective. Again, Moyers ain’t that guy - and he makes no bones about it.

Um, no. I did not invent a position you didn’t have and then attack said created position. Keep up.

I am asking a comparative question: Dan Rather - an accomplished journalist with many awards - recently got into trouble for his crappy, biased work on the Bush National Guard scandal. Despite his resume, he exposed himself as taking partisan sides in the “news”.

Now, if he tried to do a report on the Bush administration today - despite his journalistic accolades up to the Bush National Guard brouhaha - would anyone honestly believe he is giving an honest, fair, and disinterested look at the situation?

If you said no - then apply the same answer to Moyers. If you said yes - you are an idiot and a partisan hack and no one can help you.

Credibility.

Perk up, Lixy - after this last post, you are back in the running.

But…wait… they had all this evidence…Fuck it can’t defend bush or his cronies on that one.

[quote]Brad61 wrote:
thunderbolt23 wrote:
Bill Moyers does not have that credibility.

Bullshit. Moyers is one of America’s most respected journalists.

Oh sure, the batshit insane Ann Coulter wing of the Republican Party can’t stand Moyers. Big deal, they are in the minority.

Normal people who aren’t mentally unbalanced seem to respect Moyers a whole lot.

[/quote]

Wrong. Moyers is known to be about as biased as you can be and still hang, barely, within the bounds of “mainstream” journalism.

Thunderbolt has already mentioned some of his rantings about this administration, but Moyers was also the author, while working for the Johnson campaign in 1964, of the “Daisies” political commercial that said America would suffer nuclear apocalypse under Barry Goldwater. One of the cheapest and nastiest political attack ads ever.

[quote]GDollars37 wrote:

Wrong. Moyers is known to be about as biased as you can be and still hang, barely, within the bounds of “mainstream” journalism.

Thunderbolt has already mentioned some of his rantings about this administration, but Moyers was also the author, while working for the Johnson campaign in 1964, of the “Daisies” political commercial that said America would suffer nuclear apocalypse under Barry Goldwater. One of the cheapest and nastiest political attack ads ever.[/quote]

Moyers is a tool, but Tony Schwartz made the Daisy Ad.

I just watched the doc and all I can say is WOW!

Well worth the time. If nothing else, watch it for the restrospective look on the events. Gives a whole new meaning to the word “build-up”.

[quote]GDollars37 wrote:
Wrong. Moyers is known to be about as biased as you can be and still hang, barely, within the bounds of “mainstream” journalism. [/quote]

I invite you to nonetheless watch the program. He talks to people on all sides of the story.

The conclusion of “Buying the war” is: Don’t go to war based on a suspicion. Can’t argue with that, now can you?

[quote]doogie wrote:
GDollars37 wrote:

Wrong. Moyers is known to be about as biased as you can be and still hang, barely, within the bounds of “mainstream” journalism.

Thunderbolt has already mentioned some of his rantings about this administration, but Moyers was also the author, while working for the Johnson campaign in 1964, of the “Daisies” political commercial that said America would suffer nuclear apocalypse under Barry Goldwater. One of the cheapest and nastiest political attack ads ever.

Moyers is a tool, but Tony Schwartz made the Daisy Ad.
[/quote]

Yup. Wikipedia says you’re right, but I could have sworn reading in a Goldwater biography that Moyers had something to do with it. Maybe he greenlighted it within the Johnson campaign.