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A Faerie's Farthing

Flitting through the internets looking for sparkly bits. All content mine and not to be reproduced without permission.

Location: All Material Copyrighted, United States

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Media Culpa

Media Culpa

I guess I might as well actually, like, post to my blog 'n stuff. But not before moving other pieces over here. that should prove interesting, seeing as how much of it is a lot older. but that's the beauty of the internets, i guess.

where to start...where to start...I know! since baghdad judy is sprung and has sung, I'll start with this diary originally posted at dkos:

Kos's front-page piece on the lower-than-touted Iraqi vote count caught my fancy for what it says about our news media and the role these shill conglomerates play in politics. We all know that FOX is far more influential than it has any right to be; the sins of the lapdog media are old news to us.

But, as Kos reiterates, the obvious isn't quite so obvious with at least 60 million 'Murrikans. Why isn't the obvious obvious? Because the populace is bombarded by JINOs (journalists in name only) spouting shrubCo agitprop from white house press releases in an incessant loop of debilitating jingoism.

And I do mean debilitating - look at the costs of the Iraq adventure: $200 billion so far; who knows how much more and the let's not forget the deficit, financed largely by China. Beyond the costs, let's look at the destruction: U.S. soldiers' lives and families; 100,000 Iraqis, their country; relics of ancient Babylon. We have strained long-standing traditional alliances to very dangerous points and Iraq is now (but wasn't before) a wellspring of jihadist extremist fundamentalism. Our actions in Iraq have, in short, endangered the world.

And the media facilitated those actions every step of the way. So I'm wondering if it's at all possible to hold them accountable for their role in enabling a reckless foreign policy. Hell, some of them are still claiming Saddam had WMD; I'm sure it would be pretty easy to demonstrate that they have been consistently promoting information that was demonstrably false at the time.

The question is: could anything come of it? Are there any legal standards for what comprises "news"? Can media outlets be held accountable if they are proven to have propogated known falsehoods? The fantasy behind all these musings is that some worldwide class-action lawsuit could be levied against the worst offenders. It cannot be denied that their lack of fact-checking standards biased their message. These messages, in turn, misinformed millions of people on matters of global significance. Their influence directly contributed to the invasion of Iraq and pursuant devastation.

I would really love to hear some legal-minded opinions on this. I know it's kinda pipe dreamy, but there just has to be some way to take the media to task for being such indolent toadies. In the event that this is just idle fantasy, what can be done to instill a sense of responsibility in these news organizations?

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