Skip to comments.The Separation of Press and State
Posted on 06/24/2006 3:32:47 PM PDT by jennivinson
The Separation of Press and State By Jenni Vinson May 21, 2005
America was premised on the rule of law. America was also premised on the idea that the nation would fair well with an open, honest and unfettered Press. The nation would have an Executive, Legislative and Judicial branch of government at the National, State and local level and a Press that would bear witness to how these entities carried out their jobs.
What the Founding Fathers envisioned was a Press that was completely independent of politics and not beholden to such interests. For the most part, the Press has been a pain in the butt to the carriage of our government in Americas history. Even on various battlefields as they walked through events in thembut not of them. Our Founding Fathers drew a distinct line as they established a separation between Press and State. That line has been breached for decades now.
The national elite media could once deny that an alliance existed between them and the Democrat Party, but the kid gloves came off during the 2000 Presidential election. Too much was at stake to allow for George W. Bush to take the White House from Al Gore. The kid gloves have been off since then but the 2004 election found the media quite willing to put on other glovesas they entered into the political ring ready to fight for John Kerrys right to reside at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue along with all of them.
The Press was supposed to archive events as they happened. They were supposed to bear witness to events and inform the public. They are called before the Court of Public Opinion to testifyto bear witness. We have trusted them to adhere to a standard of ethics and morals that dictated that they stick to facts and keep their own ambitions out of the Who What Where When and Why of things.
They are American citizens and as such they are subject to having individuals rights, but just as when one joins the military, when one joins the Press, they are also held to a collective standard of rules that apply to that group. They were supposed to keep themselves unfettered by politics and yet over 80% of Journalists ally themselves with the Democrat Party. They violated the separation of Press and State as they have long wanted to BE THE STATEto govern this nation through their own power and influence.
Now, we see that the Press willingly enters into the Court of Public Opinion and they offer testimony based on faulty, flimsy facts or sometimes testimony that is outright false. Dan Rather and his crew at 60 Minutes mired into a single story for five years. They went before the Court of Public Opinion days before a Presidential election in hopes that the story would stick and alter the election. Even though it was discovered that they relied on falsified documents for their grand story, the good folks at CBS insisted that it didnt matter that they documents were fakethe story COULD BE REAL. In 1998, Michael Isikoff of Newsweek had a story about then President Bill Clintons illegal affair with an intern young enough to be his daughter. Isakoff had the story nailed, but Newsweek sat on the story because even though the story was fully documented, the story might NOT be REAL. So Matt Drudge of the Drudgereport took the story right out from under Newsweek.
Isikoff was the first get the story on Bill Clintons problems with both Paula Jones and then with Kathleen Willey, but again, Newsweek opted to sit on both these stories and again Matt Drudge took the stories right out from under them. Poor Michael Isikoff had been graced with so many accounts of historical importance, but he and his editors took such pains to ensure they would not harm their man and their partythat they lost out on credits.
But, Newsweek did not hesitate to run with a recent story about Qurans being flushed down toilets at Guantanamo as a horrifying insult to Muslim detainees. It was another Isikoff story, but this time, no one held back even though isikoffs anonymous source simply said he had heard of this incident.
Even though the military account is that it was a Muslim detainee that attempted to flush the Quran to clog up his toilet and keep the guards busy, the Press was sure it was American soldiers who were insensitive, oppressive bruts. The Muslim world believed the American Press, rioted violently and 17 human beings lost their lives. After causing these deaths, Newsweek and their Press associates still insist that even though their source was wrong that they story is still TRUE because the American military behaved badly at Abu Gharib and were therefore capable of flushing a Quran down a toilet.
And so, Newsweek entered into the Court of Public Opinion and bore false testimony. It is indeed a slippery slope when lines are crossed and the separation of Press and State has been breached. It is not a Court of Judicial law, so we cannot hold the Press in Contempt of Court, but I put forth that we can clearly see that our elite media is in Contempt of Country.
In a transparent attempt to harm the Bush Administration and the American Military, Newsweek was all too willing to bear the brunt of serious consequences. Even after it was known that people had died, no one in the elite media seemed sorry. No one seemed altered and no one stepped up to take responsibility.
It was as if they were saying to uslookwe stood in a crowded building and yelled fire because we felt we had a responsibility to do so. The building was made of stuff that COULD burnso obviouslythere was a danger and we reported it. It isnt OUR fault that people panicked, stampeded and killed one another as they exited this obviously flammable building.
Therein lies the real story to all of this. People died and the elite Press knows they cannot be held accountable. Its up to the Court of Public Opinion. Its up to us to withhold our support from such magazines and newspapers and to send them a clear message you are supposed to be the American Press, not simply an extension of the Democratic Party. You have violated the Separation of Press and State and you must step back or be replaced.
The Constitution lays out sketchy rights for the Press. When it comes to the release of Classified information during a time of war, the NY Times and their associates within the elite media are about to hauled before the Supreme Court. At that point, they'll find their rights refined and greatly curtailed. A reporter does have to devulge a source in certain cases and a reporter may well be tried for espionage in the near future.
Im Jenni Vinson. The Separation of Press and State is My Opinion. Thank you for listening.
This is a great article.
"a reporter may well be tried for espionage in the near future" --- I cannot wait.
There can be more shilohs and gettysbergs
I pray so - but ? source?
Excellent article, jennivinson! BTTT!
>They naively thought the same thing about judges.<
And the Commies could see all this so clearly. Take over the schools and libraries, take over the press, take over the judiciary and they are to third base. Be careful, America - don't let 'em steal home!
Great article! Mega BUMP.
Great article! Mega BUMP.
Thanks George! Sonny Rollins is a hero of mine. I was blessed to be a part of an interview with him. It's on my webpage in it's entirety. ( http://www.jvteditorials.com )
He was in Manhattan the day of 9-11. He is a sage, kind man. We could all learn from him.
You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org
"This is a great article."
it sure is. but I'll bet that before the sunday talking-heads are through tomorrow we will hear the (new?) "Separation of Press and State" catchy phrase a bunch of times and with a mythical meaning, far afield from what this writer intended. Hell, by NEXT weekend it may well be morphed into yet another (imagined) "constitutional" principle....
No one with who had bothered to actually study late eighteenth and early nineteenth century US political history would be ignorant enough to make such a statement.
The press of the Revolutionary period and the early Republic was often highly partisan and usually strongly aligned with political faction, so much so that the printers workshop was often the local party headquarters.
See, for example "The Tyranny of Printers: Newspaper Politics in the Early American Republic (Jeffersonian America)"
for accounts of such early "dirty tricks" as Thomas Jefferson's involvement in an attempted "cover-up" when a scheme to manipulate newspaper coverage of Alexander Hamilton was exposed.
The "honest" part is journalistic propaganda having no basis in the First Amendment. Nothing in the First Amendment gives any basis for the belief that journalism would be honest, and Jefferson and Hamilton sponsored newspapers in which to wage their partisan battles. That is the model for freedom of the press.
The problem is not tendentiousness in journalism; that was old in Jefferson's time. The problem is the naivete of the public which buys into the con that journalism is objective because journalism says it is objective. The other problem of journalism is government-licensed (obviously therefore unconstitutional) journalism. I have reference of course to broadcasting, which could not exist without censorship to enable licensees to be heard over long distances.
Journalism has been seized upon by broadcast licensees as an excuse for their existence as government-licensed, government-favored entities. The trouble was, of course, that objectivity is not readily defined (except in a retrospective view in the light of history). So what could broadcast journalism do but mimic unlicensed journalism? Hence we see broadcast journalism parroting The New York Times.
The conceit of journalistic "objectivity" is sustained not only by the need of broadcasting to propagandize about the "need" for "objectivity" which they provide (or at least make a pretense of providing while merely mimicking The Times) but by the willingness of journalists to go along and get along instead of competing for the respect of the public. If all go along, all get along and all are putatively "objective;" the alternative would be for persistent flame wars. Thus we see flame wars only between the institutions of "objective journalism" on the one hand and of "conservative talk radio" on the other.
Since objectivity is a virtue and it is arrogant to argue from the assumption that you have a virtue, frankly "conservative" commentators actually have the moral high ground in their positioning. For anyone who understands the difference between philosophy and sophistry, that is . . .
The Fathers were wise beyond what mere men could hope for - your elegant statement hits the mark perfectly, and begs the obvious conclusion: only a well-informed citizenry whom are mindful of their nation can be the best guarantor of Freedom.
And that, my friend - as you and we know all too painfully well - is where can be found our Achilles Heel.
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