Author: has written 5300 posts for this blog.

Jill began blogging for Feministe in 2005. She has since written as a weekly columnist for the Guardian newspaper and in April 2014 she was appointed as senior political writer for Cosmopolitan magazine.
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12 Responses

  1. Danakitty
    Danakitty April 19, 2008 at 9:19 pm |

    If McCain gets elected in November, I’m moving out of the country. This is too disheartening.

  2. Walker T
    Walker T April 19, 2008 at 11:36 pm |

    This sounds like it could be part of some great work of fiction. Or maybe that’s just me wishing it was. This is apalling and just imagining what else remains in shadow gets that cold sweat going.

  3. kate
    kate April 20, 2008 at 8:17 am |

    Frankly, while disheartening indeed, the fact is that the press is not “Wooed” by government leaders, celebrities or any others who hold positions of power. Nor is there any excuse for any press anywhere “not being told” of anything as it is their responsibility as journalists to do their research.

    If the entity that found the above information and can offer evidence to back it up, then it stands to reason that the press can too. It is their job to do so and when they don’t, they don’t they are no longer journalists, period.

    Fact is, we need a critical, fact checking, research hounding, root rutting press to keep power in check. Since the American population on average will change the channel when the facts get too thick, the press, all run by corporate entities, will then get lazy and not do its job. Facts don’t pay the bills. Fluff sells.

  4. Arianna
    Arianna April 20, 2008 at 8:44 am |

    The only thing that’s cheering me up a little, teeeny bit is that the above is from the NYT. A rare case of self-examination, it seems.

  5. MikeEss
    MikeEss April 20, 2008 at 10:15 am |

    The meme of American exceptionalism has always posited that the “bad things” that occur in other countries – unaccountable and dictatorial government, spying on citizens, a legal system that functions only as the servant of government, imperialist foreign policy, suspension of civil rights, suspicious voting practices, and the assumption that any and all “news” and “information” is probably propaganda – those things could NEVER happen in America.

    Somehow, the fact that some people 230+ years ago founded the nation on some then fairly unique principles gives most Americans that feeling that we have been granted a lifetime exemption from governmental tyranny, and it’s not necessary to concern ourselves with monitoring government and making corrections when it goes astray.

    But while most of us have looked down our noses at examples of governments gone astray in other countries, telling ourselves that the citizens of those countries are less evolved, less educated, and that they’re unable to see the evil in men’s (it’s almost always men) hearts – there have been those among us who’ve instead taken notes…

  6. Greup
    Greup April 20, 2008 at 11:24 am |

    Jill, a great piece. Im just no agreeing with the “lazy” part of the opening sentence.
    “indicative of yet another failure of a lazy corporate media and a twisted, absolutist government that seems to be taking its cues from fascist regimes:”

    The Corporate media is not lazy, it fulfills the function its tasked to do: to keep america asleep and support for Bushco high. Thats the lesson of the Vietnam war; control of the message is everything.
    Im bettin that the same economic pressures on examplified above also applies to the reporters and news anchors. Ask the wrong questions and your career is over. Play along and your lavishly rewarded.

  7. Danakitty
    Danakitty April 20, 2008 at 1:52 pm |

    Let’s not forget that the government is a powerful entity that has ways of making it difficult for the press to get information. For example, when they have private jails and private contractors, the press cannot FOIA them for info, since they’re technically private.

    The press is being constantly weakened by a government that has learned the ethical lines of journalism and will do anything to make sure journalists don’t and can’t cross those lines, while in the mean time stepping over its own ethical boundaries.

    Government has been very threatening to the press, and as you can see, its own PR. While I’ll admit part of it is corporate (conservative) media, part of it is inherently the government’s fault for being deceitful and opaque.

  8. Mnemosyne
    Mnemosyne April 21, 2008 at 1:14 am |

    The Corporate media is not lazy, it fulfills the function its tasked to do: to keep america asleep and support for Bushco high.

    Given that current polls show that Bush’s disapproval rate is about 75 percent, it’s not exactly fulfilling that function, either.

  9. MikeEss
    MikeEss April 21, 2008 at 8:42 am |

    “Given that current polls show that Bush’s disapproval rate is about 75 percent, it’s not exactly fulfilling that function, either.”

    Mnemosyne, he hasn’t exactly given them a whole lot to work with.

    It’s a lot easier when things are going well, but it’s pretty difficult to keep telling everybody that stinking pile of garbage is a five-star meal and make them believe it. It’s only the hardcore Koolaid-drinkers left now…

  10. Hannah
    Hannah April 21, 2008 at 7:23 pm |

    The Bush administration is dishonest? WHAT?

  11. Anna Van Z
    Anna Van Z April 21, 2008 at 11:14 pm |

    Great piece and great comments. MikeEss, I think you’re probably right about the remaining Bush KoolAid Brigade – even so, isn’t it mind-boggling that there would even be 25% of respondents that claim to support Darth-n-Duh-bya? I wonder what it would take for these folks to DISapprove!

  12. Janet M
    Janet M April 22, 2008 at 10:27 am |

    A well-researched, well-expressed piece, and wonderful comments.

    Sad that the public is left to twist in the wind between a conniving, deceitful government and media too cowardly and/or too lazy to do its job. Fear of losing one’s job is no excuse. And the public is not blameless, either, in its complacent swallowing of whatever self-serving lies corporate media and the government choose to feed us. That unholy alliance wants to sell to us in order to profit – it’s what corporations do – and what it’s selling is propaganda.

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