Reality Reports

August 21, 2013

newsmanDeep ground fog this early Wednesday up here along California’s north coast — no ‘Blue Moon‘ seen in these parts.
Just a bad moon rising — ha!

And stilted moonshine is blinking on assholes who call themselves journalists, but yet are waging a war against journalism — mostly because of money and power, I suppose. DC beltway pencil-pushers of the ‘he said/she said‘ brigade hate real reporting — entails something called actual ‘work.’

(Illustration found here).

Journalism used to be a vital and interesting profession — and it still is in some places — but the DC-powered arm of the reporting game have been sucked into the combo of high-salaried lovers of people in high places. In this twilight era of government over the people, news coverage has become a divided camp — on one side, assholes piously slamming those who want to report reality, and the other side, ah, reporting reality.

A couple of instances the last few days reveal how shitty the situation become — first, on Saturday Michael Grunwald, a senior writer for Time magazine, Tweeted: “I can’t wait to write a defense of the drone strike that takes out Julian Assange.”
The backlash was so immediate and so right-on, Grunwald deleted it.
One Tweet in return was cute: I think Assange is pretty much an enormous douchebag. Interestingly enough, you’re clearly an even bigger one.

Amy Davidson at The New Yorker points out the horror:

It was troubling, too, to read Grunwald’s tweet on a day when journalists were being threatened, detained, and set upon in Cairo—accused of being terrorist sympathizers, spies, or underminers of public safety—for reporting on the violence of the government’s assault on the Muslim Brotherhood.
Would words like those have appeared in Grunwald’s defense of a drone strike?
This is a dangerous time for journalists; Time itself sends people places where missile strikes and bombs are not just rhetorical ammunition.
Journalists are in legal danger, too.
The Obama Administration has, in its practices, embraced the position that the leaking of classified information to reporters is a problem properly addressed with the Espionage Act.
Bradley Manning was convicted under it even though the government failed on a charge of aiding the enemy.
Edward Snowden, the N.S.A. leaker, has been charged with two violations of the Espionage Act, for starters.
Snowden’s leaks made a crucial discussion about the N.S.A.’s overreach possible.
President Obama said in a press conference last week that he didn’t consider him a “patriot”; others have openly called him a traitor.
And the Administration has come close to calling reporters who work with leakers members of spy rings.

Such bullshit — and the second came yesterday when Jeffrey Toobin, a blowhard, nit-twit at CNN, compared David Miranda to a “drug mule” when he was detained for nearly nine hours at Heathrow Airport in London. Miranda is friend to Glenn Greenwald, the journalist with all the Ed Snowden scoops.
Toobin appeared on Anderson Cooper’s show just after Miranda and Greenwald.
From HuffPost:

Asked if he thought the British were right to detain Miranda, Toobin said, “I sure do.”
“I don’t want to be unkind, but he was a mule,” he said.
“He was given something, he didn’t know what it was, from one person to pass to another at the other end of an airport.
Our prisons are full of drug mules.”
“They knew who he was, they knew he wasn’t connected to some terrorist group,” Cooper pointed out.
“If terrorists know how we surveil their cell phone call, how we surveil their texts, that could be useful to terrorists,” Toobin said.
“But couldn’t any information published by journalists be used by journalists in some way, and can’t that excuse be used to detain journalists?” Cooper asked.
“It would have to be classified information of this kind,” Toobin said.
He later added that “the word journalism is not magical immunity sauce that you can put on anything and eliminate any sort of liability.”

And, of course, Tweeters made fun of the dumb-asshole:

— I have changed my whole opinion on Toobin because he just gave us all “magical immunity sauce”
— I’m not leaving home to do journalism without my bottle of Magical Immunity Sauce ever again.
— “Magical immunity sauce,” said in the voice of Gob Bluth.

Just a few — reporting reality of calling a shithead, a shithead.

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