“His response was to fight it with the only weapons at hand—passive resistance and open displays of contempt.” ― Kurt Vonnegut, The Sirens of Titan
I discovered the hard way that journalists are under attack in 2003.
And, as I watch the NSA, FBI and other alphabets attempt to frame narratives by coercing, bullying, and blackmailing journos- I sort of chuckle- because journalists as a professional class have become largely mere presstitutes, concealing real stories in order to solidify their fame in the bastions of history- getting the ‘scoops’ that are fed to them by official sources.
Real journalism is nearly dead in America, and framed on a par with espionage, as alternative media bloggers, and citizen journalists break the stories that count.
Mass media is feeling the strain. Here, the once great Salon.com virtually begs for support:
Unlike what I write-which is often a day-by-day narration of the incidents, effects, and descriptions of the ‘police state in covert action’, mainstream journalism attempts ‘edgy’ narratives, from within the secure compounds and remote enclaves of the established ‘normals’ of journalistic tradition. And that, backed by armies of lawyers.
Glenn Greenwald’s eloquent evisceration of Frank VanderSloot, the billionaire Romney donor who used legal threats to silence other media who dared examine his thuggish behavior.
Justin Elliott’s exposure of the insidious smear campaign aimed at progressive journalists who dare criticize Israeli government policy.
Our reporting staff’s comprehensive coverage of the Occupy Wall Street movement, extending into the winter months when the mainstream media has grown distracted and bored with the most important social movement of our day.
Andrew Leonard’s ongoing indictment of the greediest and most anti-American corporations and banks.
Alex Pareene’s wildly popular and deeply edifying Hack List, documenting the media’s most pompous, power-worshipping and consistently clueless talking heads.
Mary Elizabeth Williams’ harrowing saga of her participation in a cancer treatment clinical trial, which is not only a heart-rending personal tale, but a sharply observed report on the sickness of our healthcare system.
Mark Oppenheimer’s intimate profile of Maggie Gallagher, an architect of the national campaign against marriage equality.
Immy Humes’ compelling video series, “F**KED: The United States of Unemployment,” which gives a human face to the economic crisis.
Notice anything MISSING? I sure do- in that era, I was being subjected to a whisper campaign in a mid-western American town; AND taking notes, writing first hand accounts of the police state in action as they followed me with crew-cut agents, confidential informants, recruiters and a few of those fat white guys with exagerated long biker hair- and wearing sagging FUBAR pants, backward hats and hightops; each agency and each crew from the various alphabets has its own, um, style….
To them, I was a #badguy, for some as-yet-to-be-heard-in-court reason; they, to me, my personal bullies and blackmailers who broke every and any sense of the rule of law.
In my mind at least, I practiced ethical journalism. I gave even so-called and later convicted terrorists the benefit of skepticism, and the benefit of doubt. That benefit, practiced with care, can elicit information that even trained investigators miss.
It can also exonerate the innocent, expose corruption, and reveal plits against democracy that are in the publics interest.
The good guys don’t do any of that. But they DO create, and police narratives of power that keep them in the drivers seat, riding the national debt through the sky with their constantly morphing definitions of bad guys. And, journalists.
Here-have a look at how FBI Director James Comey has morphed the definition of a “terrorist” from a guy strapped with bombs and guns to virtually anyone who knows ANYTHING about FBI organized stalking, DHS bullying, or DEA, ICE et alphabet ass subversion of the US Constitution.
And especially, under President Obama- anyone with a pencil and paper and the will to use it for journalism.
See all those ‘fearless stories’ up there by Salon? Not one of them was written with a gun to the journalists head- or during an ICE raid on their homes after decades of black bag jobs.
But there’s a proper time, and place to tell my stories. And audience of course. You’re as welcome as ever to be skeptical of them, if and when I get it all written- but if you haven’t noticed by now? Others are writing them for me.
( quote post Iphone v FBI Comey on espionage/criminals here)
Another attempt to say it plain, which is, even then not simple.