Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Chris Hedges

Posted on Jun 23, 2008
AP photo / Charles Dharapak, file

Tim Russert is shown speaking last year at the 60th anniversary celebration of NBC’s “Meet the Press” in Washington. Russert, 58, collapsed and died this month while at work at NBC’s Washington bureau.

By Chris Hedges

Washington has become Versailles. We are ruled, entertained and informed by courtiers. The popular media are courtiers. The Democrats, like the Republicans, are courtiers. Our pundits and experts are courtiers. We are captivated by the hollow stagecraft of political theater as we are ruthlessly stripped of power. It is smoke and mirrors, tricks and con games. We are being had.

The past week was a good one if you were a courtier. We were instructed by the high priests on television over the past few days to mourn a Sunday morning talk show host, who made $5 million a year and who gave a platform to the powerful and the famous so they could spin, equivocate and lie to the nation. We were repeatedly told by these television courtiers, people like Tom Brokaw and Wolf Blitzer, that this talk show host was one of our nation’s greatest journalists, as if sitting in a studio, putting on makeup and chatting with Dick Cheney or George W. Bush have much to do with journalism.

No journalist makes $5 million a year. No journalist has a comfortable, cozy relationship with the powerful. No journalist believes that acting as a conduit, or a stenographer, for the powerful is a primary part of his or her calling. Those in power fear and dislike real journalists. Ask Seymour Hersh and Amy Goodman how often Bush or Cheney has invited them to dinner at the White House or offered them an interview.

@ Truthdig


There is a saying "Never speak ill of the dead". That saying went the way of The Constitution I'm afraid.

Yaks are yaks, people highly paid to read from teleprompters, they too are not journalists.

It seems the line between journalism and yakdom is getting more blurry every day with the suck-up-manship on the part of the MSM always willing to appease the high and mighty all the while ignoring the reality that surrounds them of death and dismemberment in Iraq.

Ask yourself why we never see injured or dead troops on the teevee.

The yaks do not want you to know about the things that make turmoil in the World, instead they lead and distract to avoid the 'unpleasant'. That is NOT journalism, rather it is supportive of the Neo-Fascists to market BIG pharma, BIG oil, and other BIG interests. The News has become a marketing tool and anyone can tell you marketing is NOT journalism.

So what is a confused consumer to do? Well I can tell you what THEY want you to do, buy their products and enjoy your peacefull Prozac addled existence in what is left of the USA and you better not protest, or else.



DEN said...

Reminder: FISA debate and possible Filibuster in the Senate today.


micki said...

I get so sick and tired of the claim that Russert (or anyone else, for that matter)"asked the tough questions."

Their "tough questions" are directed to the WRONG person -- to the enablers, the spinners, the power brokers, the insiders, the mouthpieces for the cause.

What good does that do?

micki said...

The lily-livered Dems will titch-titch over the telcom immunity provision, hoping to cover their asses on their capitulation using that ONE provision as the reason for their (alleged) dissent) but, as Senator Russ Feingold said:

But you know what? Even worse are the provisions of the bill that will make it very easy for the government to essentially suck up the communications, all communications of Americans that go overseas, whether it’s an email or a text message or a phone call to a daughter, junior year abroad, or a child who’s in Iraq or a reporter or a business associate. This is one of the greatest intrusions, potentially, on the rights of Americans protected under the Fourth Amendment of the US Constitution in the history of our country.

And unfortunately, it’s going to go through with the help of some Democrats. So this is a very, very sad day for our Constitution and for our rights, and it’s not justified by the terrorism issue, because we do not have any problem at all with going after anybody that we have reasonable suspicions about. It has to do with sucking all this information into a huge database in a way that is very intrusive on the privacy of all Americans.

ò¿óarol said...

No on asks the politicians the hard questions. Everyone walks around on egg shells around them, as if they're afraid to hurt their feelings, or something. Russert did the same thing.

As for the telecom immunity thing Micki posted about, I've said it time and time again and it's absolutely true: We Are Doomed,

Alan said...

Ok, don't choke when you see this...

Rove Rips NYT For Outing CIA Agent’s Identity And ‘Putting Our Country At Risk’

DEN said...

Feinstein sold us down the river once again with her statements regarding this BS FISA Bill!

I will vote for anyone(within reason) running against her and run her rich ass out of office.

micki said...

Holy smokes. Is Rove looking for a job as a satirist?

What gall!

micki said...

Yeah, CAROL, tough questions, my ass!

They provide a venue for the "enemy" to dispense their spin and lies and agree, in advance, to stay away from the topics that the interviewee doesn't want to touch.

One of the most pathetic aspects of these yakking head shows is that Cheney, Wolfowitz, Rice, Rumsfeld, et al spew their bullshit on Fox and the libs go ballistic, then Cheney, etc. go over to NBC, for instance, and say the same darned thing, but because Tim Russert asked the "tough questions" their answers are given more credence because they were grilled by the master of tough questioning.

Pass the bucket.

micki said...

...with that said, however, the WH "banned" any interviews with Peter Jennings because they were so pissed off at him for not marching to their drums in the lead up to the Iraq War of Choice.

micki said...

Man oh man. I sure love it when Mr. Walk on Water treats us like we have the attention span of a slug.

Less than a year ago, before he nabbed the nomination, he said in South Carolina, on
August 1, 2007, in his (now thrown under the bus speech) "The War We Need to Win:"

" This Administration also puts forward a false choice between the liberties we cherish and the security we demand. I will provide our intelligence and law enforcement agencies with the tools they need to track and take out the terrorists without undermining our Constitution and our freedom.

That means no more illegal wire-tapping of American citizens. No more national security letters to spy on citizens who are not suspected of a crime. No more tracking citizens who do nothing more than protest a misguided war. No more ignoring the law when it is inconvenient. That is not who we are. And it is not what is necessary to defeat the terrorists. The FISA court works. The separation of powers works. Our Constitution works. We will again set an example for the world that the law is not subject to the whims of stubborn rulers, and that justice is not arbitrary. "


I don't understand how his supporters can sit back and take this crapola.

DEN said...

Rockerfeller(AKA Lousy Rich Dem) calls Steny Hoyer a "pure saint".

Barf bag please! Think I'm gonna hurl!

DEN said...

Watching the Senate on the FISA issue further reinforces my belief that the idiots are running the asylum and as Carol has said, we are doomed.

DEN said...

House Democrats who flipped their votes to support retroactive immunity for telecom companies in last week’s FISA bill took thousands of dollars more from phone companies than Democrats who consistently voted against legislation with an immunity provision, according to an analysis by

In March, the House passed an amendment that rejected retroactive immunity. But last week, 94 Democrats who supported the March amendment voted to support the compromise FISA legislation, which includes a provision that could let telecom companies that cooperated with the government’s warrantless electronic surveillance off the hook.

The 94 Democrats who changed their positions received on average $8,359 in contributions from Verizon, AT&T and Sprint from Jan. 2005 to March 2008, according to the analysis by MAPLight, a nonpartisan organization that tracks the connection between campaign contributions and legislative outcomes.

Retroactive immunity could squash about 40 lawsuits pending against telecommunication companies that helped the government monitor the telecommunications traffic of Americans without warrants. The telecom industry has lobbied hard to insure that the provision is included in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act update Congress is currently considering.

I knew there had to be some reason and money is usually it.


Saladin said...

My goodness, it appears people are beginning to wake up to the reality that is the faux two-party system in this country. When your only choice for prez. supports that FISA bullshit you know there is something rotten in Denmark. I'm glad Carol said we are doomed so I don't have to.
Here is my "how do they say shit like that with a straight face" post.

Fox Analyst: Iraqis ‘Owe Us’ 100-Year Leases On Their Oil, ‘We Ought To Take It’

Think Progress
Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Last week, the New York Times reported that four Western oil companies, Exxon Mobil, Shell, Total, and BP, are in the final stages of negotiating no-bid oil contracts “to service Iraq's largest fields.” These contracts would run for one to two years, and give the oil companies a “foothold” in bidding on future contracts.

But one-to-two year service contracts aren’t enough for analyst Bob Beckel, a Fox News liberal. On the O'Reilly Factor last night, Beckel said that “what we ought to do is get Iraq to give us a 100 year lease” for exploring their oil fields:

BECKEL: OK, now, what we ought to do is get Iraq to give us 100 year lease on their unexplored, they're the second largest source of oil in the world. Known reserves. Give the United States oil companies 100 year leases. Let us explore. We can get it quickly. It's through sand. It's the fastest way to get oil.

Beckel justified giving U.S. oil companies a century of business in Iraq by claiming, "The Iraqis owe us, Bill. We ought to take it.”

As the New York Times notes, such no-bid contracts play into the suspicions of those who believe that the U.S. invaded Iraq “precisely to secure the oil wealth these contracts seek to extract.” It’s uncertain what role the U.S. played in negotiating the four no-bid contracts.

If U.S. companies were given 100-year leases like Beckel wants, more people would likely agree with former Centcom Commander John Abizaid’s 2007 claim about the war in Iraq: “Of course it's about oil.”
They OWE us??? WOW.

DEN said...

Faux pundits exceed the ignorance of the other networks by a bunch.

After brutally killing a million innocent Iraqi's, we owe them, not the other way around.

Once again the DEAD are overlooked for self interest.

Disgusting human trait, disgusting TV.


micki said...

Watch Obama explaining his unforgiveable new position on FISA

It's pathetic.

His explanation is so convoluted and weak that it makes my head spin.

Horse-trading in the Senate on energy issues is bad enough, but on the BILL OF RIGHTS?!

Wasn't he a Constitutional Law professor?

º¿carol said...

A Dem would sell us down the river for a paltry $8,359? Huh? That's downright weird.

Gotta scratch. Have a mosquito bite on the left side of my jaw. One also bit me thru one of the holes in the seat of a wrought iron chair on the pool deck this morning. Arghhhhhh....!

DEN said...

Hajji, BIG O is in trouble with the FISA thing.

Something between his handlers and his self. Tight rope walking might get dicey.

More personal definition needed.

Stand up BIG O! Show America who you are and what you stand for.
We are fed up with BS pal.

Otherwise find another line of work.


DEN said...

Health Tip of the Week: When you first discover a mosquito bite do the following,
Cut a paper towel into 4 equal pieces.

Fold all the pieces four times until it is about an inch and a half or so square.

Soak one with Hydrogen peroxide, leave slightly wet and apply to bite with a rubbing motion then hold it on it for a few minutes.

After that it should stop itching.

Mosquitos are dirty little vampires and the peroxide kills the bacteria they have on their suckulators.


DEN said...

Oh yea, save the leftover pieces for the next bite.

fairly disgusted said...

barley-n-hops time, anyway!

micki said...

Stand up BIG O! Show America who you are and what you stand for.

Errrr....ahhhhh...ummmmm....he never stood for what his myth-makers manufactured.

micki said...

I'm being serious.

It has occurred to me that if Mr. Walk on Water's supporters mounted a full-court press (ugh, those sports thingies again) and held him accountable BEFORE he might be elected, we might get someplace.

I've written to him and his campaign and tried to get through to their campaign number -- many times -- but was told repeatedly that "messages are not being accepted" right now. WTF? made a promise to hold him accountable if he were to be elected.

How 'bout before? I hope you're working on this. You wore out your shoes for him, go get him!

Saladin said...

Constitution? My friends, that was flushed down the toilet roughly 137 years ago. Obama is a CFR, AIPAC ass kissing traitor just like the rest. What will it take to wake the people up? How many taser shocks do they need? The Death of our Republic is a bit too late dontcha think? Resurrection is a fantasy, especially for fallen empires.