Sunday, April 12, 2009

Controlling the Press

Every Administration tried to control the message it put s out to the public and the press. In years past there has been a healthy tension between the press and the government to keep government "honest." With the demise of journalistic integrity and evenhandedness made painfully clear in the last election, it would seem these days are over. This has been at least one factor in the demise of many newspapers.

This disturbing trend seems likely to continue with the revelation by AmSpec that the Left has been trying to manipulate the message with its own website:

...A few weeks ago, it was revealed that the Left has been manipulating the national news media via an online communication loop called "JournoList." As someone who follows political blogs closely, I had noticed how successful the Left was at (a) getting its favorite narratives picked up by the national media, and (b) discouraging coverage of narratives unfavorable to Democrats. Conservatives have long speculated on the role of back-channel communications between "progressive" activists and sympathetic journalists in this sort of coordinated messaging operation. The JournoList revelation exposed one of those back channels; that there are many others is easily inferred....(more)

At least a few people think that a similar thing is happening with the latest "Easter Seals" dispatch of the Somali pirates.

The AP breathlessly reports that:

The operation, personally approved by President Barack Obama, quashed fears the saga could drag on for months and marked a victory for the U.S., which for days seemed powerless to resolve the crisis despite massing helicopter-equipped warships at the scene. (more)

Well, not exactly. Blackfive gives some clarification:

...He did affirm the military's authorization to use force if the captain's life was in danger, but they already would have had that authorization as part of their standard rules of engagement. If there are innocents about to be slaughtered the same reasoning that authorizes self defense also covers an imminent execution unless the ROE specifically forbid it.The AP is making it sound like there was an active rescue ordered by the President. It was not, there was an imminent threat and the local commander gave the order to fire. Good on Obama for ensuring their authorization was clear, but let's also be clear that he did not authorize or order an active rescue attempt...

(FYI- ROE stand sfor Rules of Engagement.)

At one point I would have thought I was making a mountain ourt of a mole hill, that I was becoming a bit of a conspiracy nut. I don't know anymore....

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