Freedom needs Fourth Estate

One of the most disturbing characteristics of Trump’s nascent presidency is his browbeating the “legitimate” press (Main Stream Media) and glorifying propaganda tools such as Breitbart.
___The MSM are our greatest (only?) source of knowledge about the almost-certain to be unprincipled and dangerous and oligarchic antics of the Trump administration. The Washington press corps need our support.  A case in point:

Hohmann, James. “Monica Crowley losing White House job shows that the rules of politics still apply for Donald Trump.” Washington Post. January 17, 2017. Web.

There have also been so many developments related to Trump’s cabinet appointees that . . . stories that might have doomed past nominees have drawn less attention than Trump’s early-morning, made-for-cable tweets.
___For the past 10 days, the poster child for this phenomenon has been Monica Crowley, a TV talking head who despite a dearth of serious experience was appointed as the senior director of strategic communications on the National Security Council:     ___A steady stream of stories since the weekend before last has revealed pretty egregious examples of apparent plagiarism over a period of several years, from a 2012 book to her PhD dissertation and op-eds.
___[. . . .]  The transition team put out a statement saying, “Any attempt to discredit Monica is nothing more than a politically motivated attack that seeks to distract from the real issues facing this country.”
___[. . . .] Finally, because a handful of reporters doggedly pursued the story, the pressure became too much. Yesterday afternoon, Crowley sent a statement to the Washington Times to say that “after much reflection” she’s decided to stay in New York. She made no mention of plagiarism.   More . . . . 

We all know Hallie Jackson isn’t the only one who wants to see Trump’s taxes. She needs to know we “have her back,” that we appreciate her attempts to get information.  The goal of this blog is to publish and keep up to date various kinds of contact information for

  • major news organizations: MSNBC, CNN, NPR, PBS, others (even FOX)
  • newspaper (online) editorial pages
  • human rights organizations
  • watchdog groups

___We will regularly identify news stories that MSM need to be commended for, questioned about, and/or prodded to cover more completely. We will post information about those news items here with suggestions for media outlets and personalities to contact.

It will be helpful if you “follow” the blog. Building up a group of followers is the best way to begin to have the blog appear in internet searches.

Norton, Helen. “The Government’s Lies And The Constitution.” Indiana Law Journal 91.1 (2015): 73-120.

The government’s lies can be devastating. This is the case, for example, of its lies told to resist legal and political accountability for its misconduct.
___[. . . .] The substantial harms threatened by some government lies invite a search for ways to punish and prevent them. At the same time, however, the number of lies, the diversity of reasons for which they are told, and the variety of their effects combine to suggest that efforts to enforce blanket prohibitions against the government’s deliberate falsehoods would be both difficult and unwise.
___[. . . .]  The harms of lies in general and lies by the government in particular center on the liar’s effort to manipulate the listener in ways that are inherently disrespectful of the listener’s autonomy and dignity. As Harry Frankfurt explains:

The most irreducibly bad thing about lies is that they contrive
to interfere with, and to impair, our natural effort to apprehend
the real state of affairs. They are designed to prevent us from
being in touch with what is really going on. In telling his lie,
the liar tries to mislead us into believing that the facts are other
than they actually are. He tries to impose his will on us. 
(Harry Frankfurt, “On Truth, Lies, and Bullshit.”  The Philosophy of Deception 37.
Clancy Martin, ed., 2009).

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