Tuesday, October 28, 2014

The Myth of the Free Press

From TruthDig, a new Chris Hedges essay:

If the CIA was funneling hundreds of millions of dollars in drugs into inner-city neighborhoods to fund an illegal war in Nicaragua, what did that say about the legitimacy of the vast covert organization? What did it tell us about the so-called war on drugs? What did it tell us about the government’s callousness and indifference to the poor, especially poor people of color at the height of the crack epidemic? What did it say about rogue military operations carried out beyond public scrutiny?

These were questions the power elites, and their courtiers in the press, were determined to silence.

More here.

Hey, did you know that the CIA was running TONS of cocaine into the US during the 1980s in order to fuel their clandestine and illegal war against Nicaragua? Yeah, I didn't think so. The story, broken by San Jose Mercury-News investigative journalist Gary Webb, was totally denounced by the big boys, the NY Times, Washington Post, etc., whose reporting on the story was essentially to go ask the CIA if what Webb had written was true--of course, the CIA denied it, which made it "not true."

Webb then lost his career, and, facing foreclosure on his house, committed suicide in the mid 2000s, a total disgrace. Then a Congressional investigation exonerated him and established as fact once and for all that the CIA almost by itself caused the crack epidemic of the 1980s, which devastated ghetto communities from coast to coast, and ramped the "War on Drugs" up to Orwellian levels. Too late for Webb, of course, but nobody in power gives a shit about a reporter who has exposed their lies and complicity. Good riddance. And Webb's exoneration didn't even make the front page.

What does all this mean? Journalist Chris Hedges understands and articulates what's happening in twenty first century America better than anybody else, bar none.

You'd be a fool not to check out what Hedges has to say.