Friday, April 20, 2007

Must See TeeVee

My friend J. emailed yesterday to tell me about an upcoming Bill Moyers Journal that will examine the conduct of the American press in the lead-up to the Iraq war. It's scheduled to run next Wednesday, April 25th at 9 PM on PBS. (Check your local listings here.)

Editor & Publisher has a piece up about the show now, too. Here's a taste:
[Former CNN head] Walter Isaacson is pushed hard by Moyers and finally admits, “We didn’t question our sources enough.” But why? Isaacson notes there
was “almost a patriotism police” after 9/11 and when the network showed civilian casualties it would get phone calls from advertisers and the administration and “big people in corporations were calling up and saying, ‘You’re being anti-American here.’”

Moyers then mentions that Isaacson had sent a memo to staff, leaked to the Washington Post, in which he declared, “It seems perverse to focus too much on the casualties or hardship in Afghanistan” and ordered them to balance any such images with reminders of 9/11.


(You know, as an aside, I don't get why the press always fawns over Isaccson. Is it because he's reasonably attractive? Is it because he's what passes for a public intellectual in America? Because he writes books? (Shit, Tom Delay wrote a book.) I don't get it. This guy ran CNN and as best as I could tell at the time, his big accomplishment was building a "Today Show" copycat studio facing the street into which tourists could peek. )

Anyway, read the rest of the E&P piece for a preview ("Two conservatives for every liberal" -- "Going to War, almost light" -- and more.)

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