The following debate originally took place on my Facebook wall, upon my post, “Ironically, America’s First Black President Invades Africa“…
Rayn: 1st Black US President Invades Africa:
“Isn’t it ironic? Don’t you think?” Perhaps Obama should receive another Nobel Peace Prize, eh?
War = Peace
Freedom = Slavery
Ignorance = Strength
Jason R.: I think he deserves more credit than people give him.
Katherine C.: This is a bit extreme thinking & by the way, the whole going into Libya is not America’s idea, nor were we the first! This was mostly England and France. And besides which, the whole operation was turned over to the UN. And while it may be true that they want Qaddafi out as leader, what do you say to the rebels in Libya? Even some of them were glad international military was there because they said that hand to hand with Qaddafi’s army would’ve been a massacre. The US has actually tried to play a supportive roll in this operation.
Rayn: Jason, I think he gets more credit than he deserves. For example: the above mentioned Nobel Peace Prize, believing he would “end” the war in Iraq (or Afghanistan, for that matter), etc….
Personally, I have given Obama credit for EVERYTHING he DESERVES:
Under Obama, America’s Military Empire Continues to Expand:
Barack Obama – America’s FALSE Peace Candidate!
Obama is a warmonger, just like Bush, and most, if not ALL of the neo-libs and neo-cons out there. The false paradigm that is being presented as “choice” simply represents two sides of the same coin!
Rayn: Katherine… I think this latest war effort against Libya is more than a “bit extreme”… especially, in comparison to my opposition to war. And, I simply don’t consider the murdering of innocent civilians to be a “supportive roll” for the US in Libya, either:
As a real, flesh and blood human being, I am repulsed by naked aggression, disgusted by jingoistic hubris, incensed by military occupation, and absolutely sickened to the core by murder!
Now, when you stated that “the whole going into Libya is not America’s idea, nor were we the first,” you are applying a fallacious bandwagon argument to a situation we cannot really afford, financially, nor reputation-wise. We really have no legal business being involved in Libya’s affairs, militarily! Who cares what England, France do, or even the UN, for that matter? Are we leaders, are are we lemmings, here? The authorities you mention are not OUR authorities! The CONSTITUTION is the law of THIS LAND, and our GUIDE, not foreign governments, and corporatized legal bodies! Why is the Constitution not being properly followed, once again?
Here is what I have to say about these so-called “rebels”:
CIA Operative Appointed to Run al-Qaeda Connected Libyan Rebels:
Libyan Rebel Commander Admits His Fighters Have Al-Qaeda Links:
Libya: Al-Qaeda Among Libya Rebels, Nato Chief Fears
(Remember… Al Qaeda was created by, and funded by the CIA, all the way back when it was called “Mujahadeen,” then, even when it morphed into the M.A.K.)
What we are seeing here is very similar to America’s Operation Ajax! During that time, our CIA, at the request of the BRITISH GOVERNMENT (and its OIL companies), OVERTHREW THE *DEMOCRATICALLY-ELECTED* GOVERNMENT OF IRAN:
And, here we have the missing piece of the puzzle, which remains a NON-ISSUE in most discussions taking place within the mainstream media monopoly:
In 2009 Gaddafi Proposed Nationalizing Libya’s Oil
Genaire: I think we first have to ask our selves did we elect a dictator our a monarch or did we elect a president of the united states? The president job is to command the war not sanctioning the start of the war, that’s the job of congress and congress was left out the loop on this one.
Katherine C.: Rayn, I’ve come to expect that our views will probably be the same on the most essential issues, and differ in some approaches, and it usually seems to be about the war(s)/conflicts/military, whatever you want to call it, they all seem to be the same nowadays. In all fairness, I don’t have the time to look up all your sources, and I beg you not to take this the wrong way. I’m not trying to be condescending or say that your point is not valid, but I simply mean that I’m working full time and taking four classes and literally do not have time to research all the sources you quoted above. I did manage to sneak a peak at two of them. The first one you put from England kind of goes against your argument and the article itself says that the people in Libya are still greatful that the international military is present. And the other source I checked out from infowars.com is such a blatantly biased piece of reporting, which is not even theirs. Not one piece of it is original reporting, just pieces from other reports, which is fine and I understand, but then the final paragraph is total bullshit. How is that fair reporting?? They’re just telling you what to think. It’s the same stuff that you criticize so often, and even some of their reporting is not original either. It’s from a second party source, and you know what happens when these reports get passed down from hand to hand.
Genaire: Katherine, Senator Rand Paul best sums it up in this 5 min video:
Rayn: Katherine, if you think the first article that I posted contradicts my points, then you’ve failed to understand my points properly. Allow me to reiterate them in order, for clarity:
“I simply don’t consider the murdering of innocent civilians to be a ‘supportive roll’ for the US in Libya.”
“I am repulsed by naked aggression, disgusted by jingoistic hubris, incensed by military occupation, and absolutely sickened to the core by murder!”
“We really have no legal business being involved in Libya’s affairs, militarily!”
“The CONSTITUTION is the law of THIS LAND, and our GUIDE, not foreign governments, and corporatized legal bodies! Why is the Constitution not being properly followed, once again?”
As you can see, my points have nothing to do with your assertion that “the article itself says that the people in Libya are still greatful that the international military is present.” Much like Thomas Jefferson, I also “abhor war and view it as the greatest scourge on [hu]mankind.” And, just as foreign governments and corporatized legal bodies shouldn’t be allowed, the feelings of the individuals of Libya should ALSO NEVER override the American rule of law! And, we since weren’t directly attacked, and Congress has held no vote on such matters, our current military campaign is illegitimate!
Rayn: Now, in regard to address you other comments, wherein you said that Kurt Nimmo’s InfoWars article was a “blatantly biased piece of reporting, which is not even [his]. Not one piece of it is original reporting, just pieces from other reports […] even some of their reporting is not original either. It’s from a second party source, and you know what happens when these reports get passed down from hand to hand.”
I believe that you are confusing normal “news reporting” journalism with “INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM.” These are two different divisions of journalism:
As you can read in the above link, “ ‘investigative journalism is critical and thorough journalism,’ according to the definition of the Dutch association for Investigative Journalism, VVOJ. Critical means that journalism is not merely passing on ‘news’ that already exist. It implies news, which would not be available without any journalistic intervention. This can be done by creating new facts, but also through re-interpretation or correlation of facts already at hand. Thorough means that one makes an own substantial effort, either in quantitative terms – much time spent in research, many sources consulted, etc. – in qualitative terms – sharp questions formulated, new approaches used, etc., or a combination of both.”
Rayn: Kurt Nimmo’s InfoWars article perfectly fits the description of “investigative journalism.” He simply cited six reputable articles, and summarized each in relation to each other (I have noted US-involvement in parentheses under each article):
Libyan Rebel Leader Spent Much of Past 20 Years in Suburban Virginia:
(CIA-trained Al-Qaeda terrorist, Col. Khalifa Hifter)
Libya: Who’s Terrorizing Whom?
(350 Libyan CIA trained terrorists are shipped into US, including Col. Khalifa Hiftar)
A CIA Commander for the Libyan Rebels:
(CIA-trained Al-Qaeda terrorist, Col. Khalifa Hifter)
Who are the Libyan Freedom Fighters and Their Patrons?
(US-trained, funded National Front for the Salvation of Libya (NFSL), US-sponsored National Conference for the Libyan Opposition (NCLO), US-trained, armed funded Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG), US-created Transitional National Council)
The Secret War Against Libya:
(US/UK Coup attempt in 1980s)
Conservatives Echo Qaddafi, Insist Al Qaeda Is Behind Libyan Rebel Uprising:
After Nimmo laid out the facts, these articles then served as evidence of his very accurate conclusion:
“Hidden in plain view is the fact the CIA and the establishment have appointed a former operative to run the so-called rebel army posed against Gaddafi. In other words, the resistance daily portrayed as heroes by the corporate media – itself controlled by the CIA and the establishment – basically consists of the same folks who opposed the Libyan dictator two decades ago.”
Rayn: As for your other comments: “the final paragraph is total bullshit. How is that fair reporting?? [Nimmo’s] just telling you what to think”…
Here are the last TWO paragraphs:
“The other CIA front in Libya is al-Qaeda under the banner of al-Jama’a al-Islamiyyah al-Muqatilah bi-Libya, aka the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, LIFG. The LIFG was founded in 1995 by a group of mujahideen veterans who had fought against the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan. The mujahideen operation was run by the CIA, Pakistan’s ISI, and the Saudis. It eventually became al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and assorted jihadists.
They are right, but not in the way they think. The CIA is the driving force and al-Qaeda is just window dressing consisting of the usual dupes, patsies, useful idiots, and assorted psychopaths on the payroll.”
Based on all I have pointed out now, there is nothing inherently not “fair” or somehow “bullshit” about what Nimmo wrote. What he says is true, based on the six articles he provided, which, together, illustrate that all major parties involved in the Libyan rebel movement – even the very leader – are all US-controlled, US-funded, US-sponsored terrorists!
Lana C.: lol!
Katherine C.: Ok, I don’t have nearly enough time to go through each one of these, although I’d be more than happy to sit and discuss this with you after the end of May (after finals). Until then I’m already reading volumes of books at school. But one thing I’m sure of is that you cannot possibly disagree that the last sentence of that article is biased! And I quote: “The CIA is the driving force and al-Qaeda is just window dressing consisting of the usual dupes, patsies, useful idiots, and assorted psychopaths on the payroll.” How is that not biased!!? That is TOTALLY his opinion! That’s not objective reporting! That’s an editorial, and that’s part of what pissed me off about the article. Anyway, I know it’s ridiculously far away, but let’s meet and discuss in June…and I know you’re always up for a good debate 🙂
Katherine C.: And sorry to harp on that article, but that was not investigative reporting either. That was him lifting other people’s reporting and quoting them. Investigative reporting is what Woodward and Bernstein did for Watergate.
Rayn: But, Katherine… the CIA IS the DRIVING FORCE behind the Libyan Rebels!!! As Nimmo established using SIX separate articles, there are TWO – COUNT ‘EM – TWO AL-QAEDA CIA FRONTS TAKING PLACE AT ONCE WITHIN LIBYA involving these “rebels”! There is the CIA-trained, funded Al-Qaeda terrorist, Col. Khalifa Hifter, HEADING THE REBEL FORCE, and there is the CIA-trained, funded Al-Qaeda-based terrorist organization, “Libyan Islamic Fighting Group” (LIFG), having many numbers, and a large part of the rebel force!!!!! That is NO ACCIDENT! There is an OPERATION taking place here, which appears to be very much like “OPERATION AJAX”!
As for Nimmo describing these CIA employees as “dupes,” “patsies,” “useful idiots,” and “assorted psychopaths on the payroll”… while these words may SEEM like “opinions” to you, they are simply ACCURATE descriptions of both Col. Khalifa Hifter, AND the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group!!
Here are the definitions of these words. Do they not apply to these paid terrorists of the CIA?
“dupe”: one that is easily deceived or cheated : fool (Merriam-Webster)
“patsy”: a person who is easily manipulated or victimized : pushover (Merriam-Webster)
“useful idiot”: used to describe Soviet sympathizers in Western countries. The implication is that though the person in question naïvely thinks themselves an ally of the Soviets or other ideologies, they are actually held in contempt by them, and were being cynically used. The term is now used more broadly to describe someone who is perceived to be manipulated by a political movement, terrorist group, hostile government, or business, whether or not the group is Communist in nature. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Useful_idiot)
“psychopath”: a mentally ill or unstable person; especially : a person affected with antisocial personality disorder** (Merriam-Webster)
**”antisocial personality disorder”: a mental health condition in which a person has a long-term pattern of manipulating, exploiting, or violating the rights of others. This behavior is often criminal. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001919/)
Now, considering the fact that Col. Khalifa Hifter, and the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group are both being funded by the CIA, and are both considered terrorist and Al-Qaeda, this can only mean ONE THING (just as it has proven to be in the past): the moment the CIA is done USING these “terrorists” to overthrow the American-unfriendly government of Libya, they will quickly be dealt with as the terrorists they really are, so as to polarize the country, and help usher in the CIA’s new “choice” for the country’s “leader.” This formula has been used again and again by our CIA to overthrow governments, whether democratic, or not!
Rayn: As for your repeated assertion that Nimmo’s article does not qualify, Katherine, the FULL definition of “investigative journalism,” which I posted before, states it “can be done by creating new facts, but also through re-interpretation or correlation of facts already at hand.” And, Nimmo did EXACTLY those TWO THINGS: REINTERPRETATION, and CORRELATION OF FACTS (or, as you so generously called it, “not original,” and “just pieces from other reports”). Remember, Nimmo put these “pieces” you describe together – to provide a BIGGER PICTURE of the Libyan Rebel forces as CIA-controlled!!!!!
With this in mind, do you FINALLY understand that “investigative journalism” is NOT LIMITED by the NARROW, LOFTY definition that YOU IMAGINE it to be, wherein “Woodward and Bernstein” are some sort of “gold standard,” simply because their PARTICULAR story required them to meet with, and utilize, anonymous sources, while bringing brand-spanking “new facts” to the public?
On the contrary, according to the ACTUAL definition of “investigative journalism” (not your own personal one), it is an effort to bring “NEWS” forth, whether through introduction of “new facts,” or through the sifting through of “old facts” in order to find undiscovered connections!
Investigative journalism can even indirectly serve as a form of “peer review” for journalists at times. While those facts that stand the test of time continue to be cited, sourced and revisited, those that have proven untrue are exposed, then discarded!
Rayn: This just in from the Los Angeles Times!
CIA Officers Working with Libya Rebels:
From the article, “CIA officers are on the ground in Libya, coordinating with rebels and sharing intelligence, U.S. officials say […] The CIA has been in rebel-held areas of Libya since shortly after the U.S. Embassy in the capital, Tripoli, was evacuated in February, U.S. officials say. Agency officials have been meeting with rebels to learn more about them, and in some cases they are providing them with information about Kadafi’s forces.”
Katherine C.: Rayn, I know what those words mean, and frankly no reporter or journalist worth their salt would ever write that! Are you so deeply embroiled in your own beliefs and convictions that you can no longer see a biased article when you read one?? I know you’re certainly smart enough, but I think your feelings are blinding you a little. Keep in mind, I’m not debating whether his point of view is right or wrong, I’m debating the fact that he put his point of view into his piece, which is frankly nothing more than a blog. Anyone could surf the net and copy and paste and put in their two cents at the end. It’s not that difficult. And furthermore, the fact that he has NO opposing sides is clearly biased! He doesn’t have not one thing in there defending these statements. I’m sorry, but when I read an article I expect an unbiased two sided story, because there are ALWAYS two sides, if not more. Good journalism should remain OBJECTIVE! I know it’s a standard that the likes of Fox News and MSNBC, among others, are no longer adhering to, but it’s still worth it to try.
Rayn: LOL. Katherine, I wrote up definitions under the belief that you might have become hung up on the term “idiot,” not realizing that it’s a political term. Anyway, what better words can you think of to describe the concept of “dupes,” “patsies,” “useful idiots,” and “assorted psychopaths on the payroll”? You can try, but you will be HARD-PRESSED to think of one!
Would you call a journalist “biased” for using any or all of these terms to describe an Islamic fundamentalist terrorist sympathizer? I SINCERELY doubt it! Now, before you even answer, take note of the fact that the link I sent for the term “useful idiot” shows an example of a MAINSTREAM MEDIA UK journalist “worth his salt” using the exact term to describe Islamic fundamentalist sympathizers:
And, if you would like, I can find MANY MORE real journalists using words just like these to describe THE SAME EXACT GROUP: Islamic fundamentalist extremists (CIA actors, or otherwise)!
Therefore, I not only DISAGREE with you about Nimmo’s use of these sorts of words, but you cannot view me as “biased” without also then acknowledging the fact that the MAINSTREAM MEDIA is ALSO “BIASED” as well, by your OWN STANDARD. Personally, I think that you are the one “so deeply embroiled in your own beliefs and convictions” in FAVOR of military action, that YOU are biased! Perhaps, “your feelings are blinding you a little,” eh? You DID say that Nimmo’s article, “pissed [you] off,” did you not?
Go back, and read your postings! Look how you have honed in on the MINOR details of a SINGLE article’s semantics to the exclusion of the MAJOR details of the FACTS within, and the facts within ALL OTHER ARTICLES I POSTED HERE! Aside from this, you have been systematically attempting to repeatedly and fallaciously “POISON THE WELL”:
First, it was InfoWars, then Kurt Nimmo, now, it’s me… *sigh* Yet, you have done virtually nothing to address the FACTS BEING PRESENTED! And, as you haven’t even mentioned the CIA’s involvement with Col. Haftar, nor the National Front for the Salvation of Libya (NFSL), you have yet to take the FULL TRUTH into consideration… *sigh*
Rayn: And, Katherine, while you claimed earlier that Kurt Nimmo was simply “lifting other people’s reporting and quoting them,” and now claim that “anyone could surf the net and copy and paste and put in their two cents at the end,” both of these characterizations of Nimmo’s article are UNTRUE, and PROVABLY SO!
Nimmo cited six articles, and summarized each in relation to each other. In some cases, he quoted direct sentences, and in others, he paraphrased, while, other times, he combined a bit of both. In doing this, he was able to pull and connect the facts between the articles, and illustrate that Col. Haftar has ACTUALLY BEEN a CIA agent all of this time! His logic is EASY to follow, as he is NOT THE FIRST to discover at least SOME of the connections (remember, this sort of thing has been going on in Libya since the 1980s)!
Let’s put it this way: if the so-called “Rebel Leader” Col. Haftar really actually spent the last 20 years in suburban Virginia… near Langley… and yet, was given free passage in & out of America, so that he pops up in Libya in 1996, meeting w/ the US-based Libyan National Army, in an attempt to overthrow the SAME Moammar Gadhafi that the US has been actively, covertly pursuing using the CIA since the 1980s… what does that make Haftar?
Now, after establishing the necessary facts through reliable sources, towards the end of his writing, Nimmo concludes with the following:
“Hidden in plain view is the fact the CIA and the establishment have appointed a former operative to run the so-called rebel army posed against Gaddafi. In other words, the resistance daily portrayed as heroes by the corporate media – itself controlled by the CIA and the establishment – basically consists of the same folks who opposed the Libyan dictator two decades ago.
The other CIA front in Libya is al-Qaeda under the banner of al-Jama’a al-Islamiyyah al-Muqatilah bi-Libya, aka the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, LIFG. The LIFG was founded in 1995 by a group of mujahideen veterans who had fought against the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan. The mujahideen operation was run by the CIA, Pakistan’s ISI, and the Saudis. It eventually became al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and assorted jihadists.
… The CIA is the driving force and al-Qaeda is just window dressing consisting of the usual dupes, patsies, useful idiots, and assorted psychopaths on the payroll.”
As you can see, Nimmo did not merely cut and paste throughout the article, while puting his “own two cents in at the end” of his work. He connected facts, and concluded by reiterating the hypothesis that he laid out from the beginning: the leader of the Libyan rebel force is a CIA operative, and the CIA is ultimately in control the Libyan rebel forces!
Rayn: Katherine, you may also CLAIM: “the fact that [Nimmo] has NO opposing sides is clearly biased!,” but is also UNTRUE, and PROVABLY! Nimmo DID have an opposing position AND even provided a link! Allow me to cut and paste it here:
“Meanwhile, over at the Soros operation, Think Progress, the libs are desperate to support Obama’s murderous new war and dismiss anybody who would even suggest the heroic rebels are connected to al-Qaeda and the CIA.
‘It’s necessary to have a public debate about the U.S. role in Libya, but it’s important to get the facts right — al Qaeda is not driving the Libyan resistance,’ the foundation and globalist liberals insist.”
Do you see what I mean about YOUR bias? How did you overlook TWO paragraphs? You should probably read the articles before you begin writing about them emotively…
Either way, I completely agree with you that good journalism is objective. But, let us not forget that we are not just dealing with “journalism,” but “investigative journalism. And, GOOD INVESTIGATIVE journalism is FULL of ACCURATE SOURCES, and FULL OF PERTINENT DETAIL on the topic being UNCOVERED! OBJECTIVITY in INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM comes MORE through OPEN-MINDEDNESS, and the ability to COLLECT, CHECK and CROSS-REFERENCE ALL SOURCES without BIAS, as FACTS are known to be buried EVERYWHERE, and in EVERYBODY!
Allow me to prove my point with the following question and answer: have you actually read the works of Woodward and Bernstein in regard to the Watergate Scandal? No? Well, here are the FIRST THREE ARTICLES in their series:
Five Held in Plot to Bug Democratic Offices Here:
(Note the presence NOT ONE “opposing view.” The CLOSEST this FIRST article comes is with this SINGLE sentence, having LITTLE to do with OVERALL AIM of the article : “Rafferty said the five men didn’t have firearms and didn’t harm anyone, and should be released on bond.
GOP Security Aide Among Those Arrested:
(Note the presence of just two identical versions of an “opposing view”: “Mitchell said McCord and the other four men arrested at Democratic headquarters Saturday ‘were not operating either in our behalf or with our consent’ in the alleged bugging attempt. Dole issued a similar statement… […] Mitchell said: ‘There is no place in our campaign, or in the electoral process, for this type of activity and we will not permit it nor condone it’.” As you can see, this is similar to Kurt Nimmo’s “opposing view.”)
Bug Suspect Got Campaign Funds:
(Note the presence of just one “opposing view”: “While he was Nixon campaign chief, Mitchell repeatedly and categorically denied any involvement or knowledge of the break-in incident.”)
Try to understand this all through objective eyes, and you will learn MUCH!
Rayn: By the way, Katherine, check out the FIVE articles I posted on my wall today! They ALL relate to the topic we have been discussing. Here is a quick list of them all:
Libyan Rebel Leader Khalifa Haftar Spent Much of Past 20 Years in Suburban Virginia:
Flashback, May 1991: 350 Libyans Trained to Oust Qaddafi Are to Come to U.S.:
Flashback, March 1996: Unrest Reported In Eastern Libya:
Rayn: JUST IN TODAY – CIA Officers Working With Libya Rebels:
Like I said before: if the so-called “Rebel Leader” Col. Haftar really actually spent the last 20 years in suburban Virginia… near Langley… and yet, was given free passage in & out of America, so that he pops up in Libya in 1996, meeting w/ the US-based Libyan National Army, in an attempt to overthrow the SAME Moammar Gadhafi that the US has been actively, covertly pursuing using the CIA since the 1980s… what does that make Haftar? And, what does that make the “rebel forces”?
Katherine C.: Your quote: Anyway, what better words can you think of to describe the concept of “dupes,” “patsies,” “useful idiots,” and “assorted psychopaths on the payroll”? You can try, but you will be HARD-PRESSED to think of one!—> You shouldn’t describe them! That’s the point to objective journalism. And professionally, one doesn’t call them psychopaths anymore. And yes, I would call a journalist biased for using those words on ANYBODY! Even this one book I read on serial killers where the author was being so biased pissed me off. And just because journalists use their own opinions certainly doesn’t make it right. Like I said before, it’s a goal we should always aspire to, but unfortunately it doesn’t mean the journalistic world usually does. And like I said before, I AM NOT ARGUING OVER THE ISSUE BEING WRITTEN, BUT THAT HIS JOURNALISM IS CRAP! And there is no “my side”, nor am I hung up on military action. I’m not one of those people that are happy to go into other lands and bomb them. I wish we wouldn’t, but frankly I’m still up in the air with what the leader in Libya is doing. I would just like to get both sides of the story, which that article does NOT offer and the reason it pissed me off was mostly because he’s blatantly being biased. And as for Nimmo, it’s “sophisticated copying and pasting”. And in that paragraph you provided to his contrasting opposing view, he still throws in “Obama’s murderous new war”. Yeah, throw in a biased phrase in the opposing view…that’s the way! sheesh. And I know you want me to check out every article, but I don’t have the time, that’s why I’ve chosen to only argue that particular article. And even writing this is costing me dearly, but I just don’t understand how you can not see how it’s biased?!
Rayn: Rethinking Objective Journalism
From the article:
“The problem with U.S. coverage is not political bias but a misplaced adherence to a shallow definition of objectivity.
Yet these three examples — which happen to involve the current White House, although every White House spins stories — provide a window into a particular failure of the press: allowing the principle of objectivity to make us passive recipients of news, rather than aggressive analyzers and explainers of it. We all learned about objectivity in school or at our first job. Along with its twin sentries ‘fairness’ and ‘balance,’ it defined journalistic standards.
Or did it? Ask ten journalists what objectivity means and you’ll get ten different answers. Some, like the Washington Post’s editor, Leonard Downie, define it so strictly that they refuse to vote lest they be forced to take sides. My favorite definition was from Michael Bugeja, who teaches journalism at Iowa State: ‘Objectivity is seeing the world as it is, not how you wish it were.’ In 1996, the Society of Professional Journalists acknowledged this dilemma and dropped ‘objectivity’ from its ethics code. It also changed ‘the truth’ to simply ‘truth.’
As E.J. Dionne wrote in his 1996 book, ‘They Only Look Dead,’ the press operates under a number of conflicting diktats: be neutral yet investigative; be disengaged but have an impact; be fair-minded but have an edge. Therein lies the nut of our tortured relationship with objectivity. Few would argue that complete objectivity is possible, yet we bristle when someone suggests we aren’t being objective — or fair, or balanced — as if everyone agrees on what these words all mean.
One result is a hypersensitivity among the press to charges of bias, and it shows up everywhere: In Oct. 2001, with the war in Afghanistan under way, then CNN chairman Walter Isaacson sent a memo to his foreign correspondents telling them to “balance” reports of Afghan ‘casualties or hardship’ with reminders to viewers that this was, after all, in response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11. More recently, a CJR intern, calling newspaper letters-page editors to learn whether reader letters were running for or against the looming war in Iraq, was told by the letters editor at The Tennessean that letters were running 70 percent against the war, but that the editors were trying to run as many prowar letters as possible lest they be accused of bias.
…According to numbers from the media analyst Andrew Tyndall, of the 414 stories on Iraq broadcast on NBC, ABC, and CBS from last September to February, all but thirty-four originated at the White House, Pentagon, and State Department. So we end up with too much of the ‘official’ truth.
This is not a call to scrap objectivity, but rather a search for a better way of thinking about it, a way that is less restrictive and more grounded in reality….
Mindich shows how ‘objective’ coverage of lynching in the 1890s by the New York Times and other papers created a false balance on the issue and failed ‘to recognize a truth, that African-Americans were being terrorized across the nation.’ “
Rayn: “You shouldn’t describe them! That’s the point to objective journalism.
Not really… Objective journalism, especially investigative journalism, is under no obligation to take a passive role, or passive voice in order to deliver news. Regardless of your complaints against semantics, a patsy is a patsy, and a psychopath is a psychopath! These are very specific terms, irreplaceable by other words, and necessary in order to accurately illustrate the dynamics of the story being uncovered. Let the facts speak for themselves! There is no excuse to downplay the roles of these CIA operatives under the weak, passive GUISE of so-called “objective journalism.” We have allowed this to go on in the mainstream media for FAR TOO LONG, and it simply doesn’t CUT IT as a MODE to TRUTH! It is not the JOB of journalists to ARTIFICIALLY CREATE or EQUALLY PUSH ALTERNATIVE POSITIONS simply in the interest of the most RIDULOUSLY SHALLOW definition of “objectivity” I CAN POSSIBLY IMAGINE, wherein fact takes a back seat to sentimentality, and the illusion of political correctness!
Your assertions about the words “patsy,” “dupe,” “psychopath,” and “useful idiot” having no objectively journalistic integrity are simply INCORRECT!
New York Times REPEATEDLY uses the word PSYCHOPATH, regardless of your very narrow definition of “objective journalism,” and your assertion that fact take a back seat to PC nonsense:
Teasing Out Policy Insight From a Character Profile:
The Talented Mr. Madoff :
Here’s Slate.com using the word, “psychopath”:
The Depressive and the Psychopath:
At Last We Know Why the Columbine Killers Did It:
Here is the New York Times repeatedly using the word “dupe”:
SCUDDER GOT $10,000 FROM ANOTHER DUPE; Philadelphia Firm Also Paid the Swindler, Posing as London Banker, to Float Bonds:
ARTIST DUPE IN SWINDLE; Mexican Had Kaulbach Paint His Portrait, Which Got Credit for Him:
North Korea Didn’t Dupe U.N. Office, Report Says:
PAYROLL ROBBERS DUPE CHIEF PLOTTER:
Here is the New York Times repeatedly using the word “patsy”:
A Geek, Sure, but No Patsy When It’s About Research:
Fordham Debate Team: From Patsy to Powerhouse:
ON LANGUAGE; WHO’S A PATSY?
IRAN-CONTRA HEARINGS; A FALL GUY YES, A PATSY NO, A PRESIDENT’S SERVANT SAYS:
Rayn: I don’t mind being the one to tell you this, Katherine, but BY DEFINITION, a serial killer, is INDEED a psychopath, so you really had no cause to be angry upon reading the term being used to describe any one of them. It is a very specific type of pathology that requires catergorizing, as it conveys a highly dangerous type of human being, in dire need of special intervention in order to healthily cure their “boredom.” It is only for PURELY POLITICAL reasons that this word would become somehow unacceptable to use, as it is a scientifically observed behavioral condition, even resulting in physiological differences in the brain and body chemistry, effecting up to 6% of the population. The word itself technically means “pathos of the psyche (mind),” which is perfectly adequate in decription…
I have researched the topic of psychopathy extensively… There are a few things that really distiguish these PARASITES from even the average criminal mind…
Much like sociopaths, psychopaths typically show a “lack of remorse or guilt, meaning a lack of feelings or concern for the losses, pain, and suffering of victims; a tendency to be unconcerned, dispassionate, coldhearted, and unempathic. This item is usually demonstrated by a disdain for one’s victims.”
Both groups also exhibit, “callousness and lack of empathy, meaning a lack of feelings toward people in general; cold, contemptuous, inconsiderate, and tactless.”
(Here’s a little test on psychopathy, to get an idea: http://www.arkancide.com/psychopathy.htm)
The many scientists and researchers that distinguish sociopathy from psychopathy see the main difference between them being that sociopaths are more nervous individuals, and also develop a shallow form of care for at least one group of individuals (family, friends, gang, co-workers, etc), while psychopaths are highly charming, empathize with no one, and behave in a purely predatory manner towards all other members of humanity, carefully planning every step of their manipulative agenda. Also, psychopaths typically collect “souvenirs” from their victims, while sociopaths typically do not.
CLASSIC PSYCHOPATHS often admit to the following upon being caught by police – first, they describe their sense of boredom, then, their behavior as predators, luring a chosen victim into a trap using friendly charm, then, their ritualistically violating and abusing their victim for entertainment like some sort of “plaything,” while showing no remorse, and finally, extracting a trophy of some sort, as a way to relish in the dark ecstasy of their original deed, again and again! They are an active DANGER TO SOCIETY, and IN DESPERATE NEED OF ROUND-THE-CLOCK INTENSIVE PSYCHOTHERAPY! It would be FOOLISH to discard the term that describes such a SPECIFIC SET of behavioral traits in some misguided attempt to be more “professional” or “objective.” If anything, we need to ALL, as a SOCIETY, stop using the term SO LOOSELY to describe ANY SORT OF abberrant behavior we see, so that it will really STICK when we call serial killers, murderous dictators, war/drug lords, gang leaders, mob leaders, hired assassins, corrupt politicians, police and CEOs “psychopaths.” We must not allow the “seduction of language” to lure us into a false sense of what we are dealing with here, lest we let our guard down to the WORST of the CRIMINAL MINDS!