Eyeing a vacation in Africa

Published 1:05 am Thursday, March 16, 2006

By By JOHN EBY / Niles Daily Star
THREE OAKS - Becoming “a nation of spectators” enables government to keep secrets from its constituents.
Artz argued that major U.S. media “constitute essentially a private ministry of information and propaganda. The structure of the media is part of the problem. We have fewer journalists. Media are closing their news desks around the world. When Clear Channel consolidated eight radio stations in the Chicago market, the very first thing that happened was seven working journalists were put out of work. That's seven fewer people there to tell us what's happening. Media's a business that works at a margin of 20 to 40 percent. When Knight-Ridder was only working at 19 percent return, it was put on the auction block and just got sold last week. One of the first things they're doing is selling eight papers.”
Sale of Knight-Ridder to McClatchy for $4.5 billion affects 32 publications owned by the nation's second-largest newspaper company.
Artz offered examples he said support his contention that the press is too complicit in government actions.
While there was an uproar over New York Times reporter Jayson Blair fabricating stories, “Nobody was upset about Judith Miller and all the stories she told us on the war on Iraq” based on a source paid by the U.S. State Department. “There was plenty of information that there were no weapons of mass destruction. The New York Times knew it and didn't print it. I did a study of the New York Times coverage of the war. In the first five days” three years ago this month, “240 pictures, two-thirds presented the troops as if they were on a holiday party. Not one showed a U.S. soldier firing a weapon at anyone else. Not one of those pictures showed anybody dying. This is the ‘liberal' New York Times?
Artz said when the Telecommunication Advisory Board meets four times a year, it enjoys a teleconference with President George W. Bush and one face-to-face meeting at the White House. It's made up of media leaders, including AT&T and Nextel, “which, by the way, were two of the groups that participated in the wiretaps of American citizens.”