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  1. #1
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    The Endangered Scoop

    The Endangered Scoop

    Stephen Pizzo
    [email protected]
    www.newsforreal.com

    Let's play the blame game. Whose fault is it, anyway? Seriously. Whose fault is it that:


    ..We still don't know who met with VP Dick Cheney five years ago to formulate the national energy policies that have now brought us record high energy prices.

    ..We didn't know in time that the Iraq/Niger/Yellow cake business was a scam – and three years later we still don't know who cooked it up,

    ..We didn't know in time that there were no WMD in Iraq, and there hadn't been for years,

    ..We didn't know soon enough that US troops were “mistreating” Iraq prisoners, even though reporters were "embedded" with those troops,

    ..We didn't learn for almost four years that the NSA was breaking the law listening in on Americans and reading our email.

    ..Why did it take so long to find out what Jack Abramoff and Tom DeLay were up to when the evidence has been laying around since at least 2002 just waiting for someone put it all together.


    Who's to blame for that dismal list of disgrace?

    Simple. My former profession, journalism, is to blame – hands down. Journalists are supposed to be in the show and tell” business. But over the past five years they have done neither very well -- if at all.

    Let's look at it another way. If the police failed to prevent by catching those who commit crimes, who do you blame – the crooks or the cops? I blame the cops. Crooks are just doing what crooks do – being crooks. They are those proverbial bears in the woods doing what's expected of them. It's the cops' job to make me safe as possible from them. If crime is running rampant in my town, it's the cops' fault.

    All the “crimes” listed above were committed by the Bush folk and, while it's despicable behavior, it's nothing we haven come to expect of them. Neo-conservatives, like al Qaida, have made it perfectly clear what they are all about. So I don't blame them for trying. I blame the media for failing to find out what they are trying and exposing it. Neo-cons like to say chant that “we are a nation of laws.” Shouldn't the media have known the same people were breaking those laws – and told us. And not after the damage is done, but in time for Americans to put their two cents in.

    What passes for news today too often belongs on the History Channel.

    Back in the old days, (yeah, yeah, I know how that sounds....back when I had to walk ten miles to work in the snow and put cardboard in shoes because I was so poor...,) reporters lived for the scoop. There was nothing worse than being assigned to cover a PTA meeting or a city council meeting – unless of course you caught a public official up to no good. Ah, the rush. It's the highest high on earth for a reporter to uncover evil-doers evil-doing. And to write that story and see it on the front page the next morning.

    That all changed, I believe, during the Clinton years -- which was also when cable news and the 24-hour news cycle really got rolling. Reporters, who once spent days pouring over public records and picking through campaign finance disclosures, suddenly found themselves chasing a puissant $29.000 real estate deal in Arkansas, women who claimed to have seen Willy's Willie's, and a blue dress with an unspeakable stain upon it.

    Many veteran reporters didn't like it. But the reading and viewing public seemed captivated by it. This was news with a twist, news that also entertained. This was news with the legs of a Mexican soap opera. There was something shallow, but titillating, in each day's reporting episode, teasing that something even more prudently jaw dropping tomorrow. Film at 11.

    I remember a different time -- a time when real investigative reporters stalked the halls of power, and meant business, and were backed by their employers.


    In the late 1980s I had the privilege of working with a great team of investigative reporters at the Arizona Republic. The paper had not only set up a separate budget for this team, but had taken them out of the newsroom and ensconced them in a secure, almost bunker-like, office in the basement. The team included it's own senior researcher, a remarkable man named John Doherty, now sadly deceased. John was Google on two legs. Anything I wanted to know John could provide. And we did some award-winning reporting back then John, Andy, Jerry and I.

    But you'd be hard pressed to find similar investigative teams today. Which is precisely the reason the Bu****es have gotten way with so much for so long. By the time Bush replaced Clinton in the White House damn few investigative teams remained. Media outlets had slashed their budgets for such labor intensive, time consuming and potentially litigious endeavors.


    That's why I put the ultimate blame for the misdeeds of the Bush administration has gotten away with directly on the media. They could have done more – a lot more. They should have done more. And, even now, with new bodies turning up weekly, they are still not doing that job.

    Take just Cheney's (secret) Energy Task Force: No national security issues to confuse the argument here. This just your simple, Journalism 101, open governance story. But we still know nothing. Reporters have reported. In the old days I can assure you we'd know who met with whom and what they said. How? By never taking no for an answer. Some reporter would have camped out in the back seat of some source's office until they spilled the beans.

    I knew reporters like that, and they are no longer welcomed in today's newsrooms. Why? Because they are pains in the ass – that's why. Real investigative reporters are born that way. They are pushy sons-a-bit.ches. They tend to go out of their way to intrude, to challenge, to storm out of meetings when they don 't get their way. In today's painfully politically correct, self-esteem-protecting, white bread workplace such behavior is the human resources director's worst nightmare.


    continued...
    Last edited by sojustask; 01-10-2006 at 05:11 AM.

  2. #2
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    The last investigation I did was for partisan Democrats. It was March 2002 and I uncovered DeLay's dealings with Abramoff. I couldn't even give it away. (That 2002 report is posted here) The point being most of the information now being peddled in the Times and Washington Post as "scoops," was readily available nearly four years ago. Why didn't they write about then? The only conclusion I can come to is that the media was afraid that launching a full frontal attack on the darling of the far right, even if justified,, would only reinforce the right wing fiction that the media is a lackey of the left.


    So most old mad-dog reporters are gone now, fired or retired. (Some can be even be found pecking pathetically away in blogland obscurity.)

    Meanwhile, back at papers that once broke history-changing stories, it's “hear, see, and write about not evil.” Instead of assigning a Mad Dog reporter to the biggest story since Vietnam, the New York Times assigned Mad Woman, Judith Miller. Who, rather than stalking the administration for leakers likely to tell her what was really going on, she became a press release service for the Vice President's office.

    But there's something even more disturbing than that in how the Times mishandled the WMD story. It's expected that a reporter will run into stonewalls when trying to unearth the truth from another organization, like the White House. But it says something very, very unsettling when the wrongdoing was happening right there under the noses of hundreds of reporters, right there in the New York Times own newsroom. Where were the other reporters at the Times while Miss Run Amok was running amok? Now that would have been a scoop worth bagging!

    Another problem is that the media is all lawyered up now. And so mistakes scare the hell out of editors. When Dan Rather pulled the trigger prematurely on the Bush/Air National Guard story everyone in the mainstream media ran for cover. The few remaining mad dog reporters were put on leashes and told to stick to reporting only what is already known.

    Which is largely the reason the NY Times sat on the NSA spying story for over a year.


    Memo to the Times: A year-old story is no longer a scoop.
    It's a badge of cowardliness and dereliction of duty.


    You see, the Times did not want to get itself "Rathered," especially since the paper now had a pretty good idea of what Judy "Hi there sailor" Miller had been up to. So when the president called and asked the Times to spike the story, they complied. Imagine that. If the subject of an investigation had ever called me and asked that I kill or hold something I had learned about him, I would have taken that as the ultimate form of confirmation. And, I would have redoubled my efforts knowing for sure now that I was truly onto something big.”

    If I had had a story as important as the NSA spying story was, and my editors refused to publish it the moment I had it nailed down, I would have taken it, or leaked it to, another paper. No real journalist would sit on a confirmed story that important for that long for the reasons being proffered.

    This is a good time to recall how the media responded when the Nixon administration got a court order blocking the New York Times from publishing the Pentagon Papers. The Times immediately knew that the right thing to do was to make sure that story got out. They put their own business and legal interests aside and passed that hot potato right off to the Washington Post, which published the material the next day.


    That's the way it was in "the old days," when journalists understood that their job – their ONLY job – was to keep the publics' business public.

    So...



    Memo to
    “The Media”



    From: The American People

    Re: Refresher Course in Journalism


    1) You are in the news business. You are NOT in the national security business. It is your job to find out what public officials are doing, and then tell us.

    2) If I want entertainment I have 500 cable channels pumping it right into my house 24/7. So stop trying to make news entertaining and get back to making it timely, credible and useful.

    3) Cut your entertainment and sports budgets if you must to find the money necessary to fund real investigative units. Staff them with hungry mad dog journalists – then stay the hell out of their way.

    4) When you learn something that's news worthy, report it. If someone tries to convince you not to report they just became part of the story. So, report that too.

    This Year's Assignment:
    Pin the list of missed scoops I list above. Pin them up in you offices, newsrooms and coffee rooms. Keep them there until you remember why it is you exist and why we should care whether or not you continue to exist.


    .

  3. #3
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    ..We didn't know in time that the Iraq/Niger/Yellow cake business was a scam...
    Bovine excrement we didn't. It was well known prior to the invasion that the documents were forgeries.

    ..We didn't know in time that there were no WMD in Iraq, and there hadn't been for years,
    He can speak for himself. I was telling people before the invasion that there was no evidence Iraq still possessed WMD. That's because there was no evidence Iraq still possessed WMD.

    On the rest of it, I'm more inclined to agree with the author.

  4. #4
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Quote Originally Posted by Yirmeyahu
    Bovine excrement we didn't. It was well known prior to the invasion that the documents were forgeries.

    He can speak for himself. I was telling people before the invasion that there was no evidence Iraq still possessed WMD. That's because there was no evidence Iraq still possessed WMD.

    On the rest of it, I'm more inclined to agree with the author.
    He checks this site occassionally. :)

    Namaste'

    Lady Mod

  5. #5
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Memo to: Pizzo

    From: the American People

    Re: When you point a finger, that leaves three more pointing back at you!

    1) Energy prices follow an ebb and flow that isn't centrally controlled by one puppetmaster. Be thankful that gasoline prices haven't risen at the rate of inflation; otherwise we'd be paying $8.32 per/gallon.

    2) Iraq sought yellowcake in Niger. The only scam was Joe Wilson trying to lie about the fact even after his report corroborated the meeting took place.

    3) Saddam himself was the greatest WMD in Iraq. Soon, there will be facts come out on how many terrorists were actually trained there. And, yes Steve, WMD has been found in Iraq.

    4) Troops mistreating detainees is not a normal practice and is not condoned by the government. Embedded reporters have done good work, if the truth that they have reported doesn't meet your delusional assumptions of reality, then I suggest a nap.

    5) The NSA has not been breaking the law. The NSA could care less about you and your webblog, unless A-Q is calling you on the phone or e-mailing you. If this is the case, then you deserve to be watched very closely.

    6) Please thank McCain/Feingold finance reform for people like Abramoff. His dirty monies have hit both sides of the aisle pretty hard.

    This years assignment:
    Stay off the sailboat, hang up the fake captains hat and turn off NPR and Air-America. Do some gumshoe reporting of your own and one-up these fools. Show them all how easy it really is. If you fail to get up off the sofa and do this, then go back to sitting on your brain.

  6. #6
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Thank God for raider, the Minister of Truth. Well at least he realizes that the rate of inflation is rising.

    The Ministry of Truth -- Minitrue, in Newspeak -- was startlingly different from any other object in sight. It was an enormous pyramidal structure of glittering white concrete, soaring up, terrace after terrace, 300 metres into the air. From where Winston stood it was just possible to read, picked out on its white face in elegant lettering, the three slogans of the Party:

    WAR IS PEACE

    FREEDOM IS SLAVERY

    IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH
    From George Orwell's novel 1984

  7. #7
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Quote Originally Posted by bairdi
    Thank God for raider, the Minister of Truth. Well at least he realizes that the rate of inflation is rising.
    LOL, loved the quote. I recognize the sarcasm in the rest, even if Raider won't. ;)

    Namaste'

    Lady Mod

  8. #8
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Quote Originally Posted by Raider
    2) Iraq sought yellowcake in Niger. The only scam was Joe Wilson trying to lie about the fact even after his report corroborated the meeting took place.
    I don't know where you get your delusions from, Raider.

    3) Saddam himself was the greatest WMD in Iraq. Soon, there will be facts come out on how many terrorists were actually trained there. And, yes Steve, WMD has been found in Iraq.
    Raider's prediction for the future. Wonderful.

    And please explain what "WMD" have been found in Iraq. I'm just dying to know.

    4) Troops mistreating detainees is not a normal practice and is not condoned by the government.
    You might want to explain all those legal memos condoning the practice, then, as well as policy documents, such as Rumsfeld's authorization for such practices.

    Embedded reporters have done good work, if the truth that they have reported doesn't meet your delusional assumptions of reality, then I suggest a nap.
    They're "embedded" reporters. That doesn't tell you anything?

    5) The NSA has not been breaking the law.
    The NSA has been conducting warrantless surveillance of American citizens. That is absolutely a violation of the law -- the Constitution, in particular.

  9. #9
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Quote Originally Posted by Yirmeyahu
    Bovine excrement we didn't. It was well known prior to the invasion that the documents were forgeries.



    He can speak for himself. I was telling people before the invasion that there was no evidence Iraq still possessed WMD. That's because there was no evidence Iraq still possessed WMD.

    On the rest of it, I'm more inclined to agree with the author.

    You believe that saddam, when ordered to destroy his weapons by the u.n., simply complied? Why? And then commit violations regularly, repeatedly, until invaded? Does that ring true? Just because he is mad as a hatter? C'mon...try to visualize him on the phone to his flunkies, telling them to destroy their weapons...it does not pass the smell test. Here are some books by people who were there:

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/047...books&v=glance

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/074...books&v=glance

  10. #10
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Quote Originally Posted by pwrone
    You believe that saddam, when ordered to destroy his weapons by the u.n., simply complied?
    All evidence indicates Iraq's WMD were destroyed unilaterally in 1991. There is no evidence that Iraq possessed undeclared WMD after that date.

    Why?
    Various theories exist. Iraq had been trying to improve relations with the West. He calculated that the US would not respond to his invasion of Kuwait. In fact, he informed the US of his intentions and was told by the US Ambassador that the US "has no opinion" of his conflict with Kuwait.

    Then, of course, came the Gulf War, then sanctions and inspections. Iraq's CBW was probably destroyed to prevent the weapons inspectors from learning the full extent of Iraq's WMD capability, as well as the actual quantities of CBW used against Iran. Along with the weapons, documentation was also destroyed, most likely to hide the numbers.

    And, of course, there were the sanctions that would not be lifted until Iraq was rid of WMD.

    If you were a heroin addict and the cops came knocking at your door, you'd most likely flush your stash down the toilet, too. That's precisely what Iraq did.

    And then commit violations regularly, repeatedly, until invaded?
    To comment appropriately, I'd have to know what "violations" you refer to.

    Look, I'll say it again. There was no evidence prior to the invasion that Iraq possessed WMD. If you are aware of any evidence that Iraq possessed WMD, please share it. I'd love to see it, if any exists.

  11. #11
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Hasn't it become obvious by now that RatTurd and his little dopplegangers, Grime-17 and Pwroff are not for real? They are simply here to waste everybody's time by diverting serious people from other more productive pursuits. These little weasels betray their true intentions by the persistent, shrill lunacy of the crazed, shameless, fascistic sewage they wantonly spew around here. Only a raving psychotic who spends the day shuffling around a nut ward in a bathrobe, being constantly observed by a crew of orderlies wearing white coats and carrying butterfly nets would exhibit the level of intractably bizarre dementia that we see displayed from their chronic, obstinate disconnect from reality expressed here.

    I think they should just be ignored since it's clear, especially in the case of RatTurd and Grime, that they don't deserve the time of day. These scumbags probably work for some psy-ops program conducted from within Bush's spying operation and they are logging every anti-Bush Regime response that's offered to them by reasonable and sane people of good faith. This is the only thing that makes sense as I'm sure the Administrators of The Nut House would never let any of them within a 100 yards of a network computer.
    :D
    Last edited by dante; 01-10-2006 at 05:08 PM.

  12. #12
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Quote Originally Posted by Gazza.
    You have a nice way of contributing to a thread which makes the whole thread meaningless.

    You are insane!

    Or stoned!


    Or both.

    Well..well.. Now that was a useful and on-point contribution, wasn't it? So, now piss off and go bury your nose back in your favorite fascist's butt while you think of some more meaningless drivel for us to ignore.
    Last edited by dante; 01-10-2006 at 05:48 PM.

  13. #13
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Quote Originally Posted by dante
    Hasn't it become obvious by now that RatTurd and his little dopplegangers, Grime-17 and Pwroff are not for real? They are simply here to waste everybody's time by diverting serious people from other more productive pursuits. These little weasels betray their true intentions by the persistent, shrill lunacy of the crazed, shameless, fascistic sewage they wantonly spew around here. Only a raving psychotic who spends the day shuffling around a nut ward in a bathrobe, being constantly observed by a crew of orderlies wearing white coats and carrying butterfly nets would exhibit the level of intractably bizarre dementia that we see displayed from their chronic, obstinate disconnect from reality expressed here.

    I think they should just be ignored since it's clear, especially in the case of RatTurd and Grime, that they don't deserve the time of day. These scumbags probably work for some psy-ops program conducted from within Bush's spying operation and they are logging every anti-Bush Regime response that's offered to them by reasonable and sane people of good faith. This is the only thing that makes sense as I'm sure the Administrators of The Nut House would never let any of them within a 100 yards of a network computer.
    :D
    I agree. I’ve been ignoring their drivel for a long time now. The good news is that all their frenzied keyboard pounding has not resulted in winning one single convert to their cause. Not since I’ve been following here anyway.

  14. #14
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Quote Originally Posted by Gazza.
    EEEEEL KABONG!!!!!! SPROING!!!!!

    GO BACK TO SLEEP, QUEECKS DRAW!!




    Just kidding! ;) What cause is that?
    ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

  15. #15
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Quote Originally Posted by Gazza.

    Just kidding! ;) What cause is that?
    The "become a Bush zombie" cause. :D

    Lady Mod

  16. #16
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    Re: The Endangered Scoop

    Quote Originally Posted by dante
    Hasn't it become obvious by now that RatTurd and his little dopplegangers, Grime-17 and Pwroff are not for real? They are simply here to waste everybody's time by diverting serious people from other more productive pursuits. These little weasels betray their true intentions by the persistent, shrill lunacy of the crazed, shameless, fascistic sewage they wantonly spew around here. Only a raving psychotic who spends the day shuffling around a nut ward in a bathrobe, being constantly observed by a crew of orderlies wearing white coats and carrying butterfly nets would exhibit the level of intractably bizarre dementia that we see displayed from their chronic, obstinate disconnect from reality expressed here.

    I think they should just be ignored since it's clear, especially in the case of RatTurd and Grime, that they don't deserve the time of day. These scumbags probably work for some psy-ops program conducted from within Bush's spying operation and they are logging every anti-Bush Regime response that's offered to them by reasonable and sane people of good faith. This is the only thing that makes sense as I'm sure the Administrators of The Nut House would never let any of them within a 100 yards of a network computer.
    :D
    Since I had a thoughtful retort and stayed on topic to the pizzo "piece", I assume you are countering your inner demons or some such nonsense. If your real name is Steve Pizzo, then I might be able to allow leeway for your tourette's outburst. If in fact you are only the simple dantechriste, then it was fun to watch you give an expose' of rhetoric. Upping the meds may control the muscular spasms that burn-up your keyboard, however please take heed that increasing the suggested doseage may lead to more obvious mental outcries! Please consult your physician before taking any advice off of the net. No one here wants to be held libel. :cool:

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