Friday, July 29, 2005


The Perils Of "Access"

Judith Miller went to jail not to defend the First Amendment, but to defend her "access". (She also went because she'd rather die than have it known just how deep her ties to BushCo and to Chalabi go, but that's another story.) But what does "access" get you, other than the excuse to put fancy dinners at overpriced Beltway restaurants on your expense account? Not much, according to Eric Boehlert. He notes that the access-ridden Newsweek scribes, staggering under the weight of Bush White House spin, got wrong pretty much every salient fact about Bush's Supreme Court nominee John Roberts -- even as non-access-laden regional papers such as the Miami Herald, and the bloggers that Newsweek cheerfully dissed in its Roberts profile, got all the salient facts right. If these guys really wanted to work White House sources, they'd skip the fancy expense-account dinners with Rove and crew and instead concentrate on cultivating the White House cleaning staff. For millenia, the rich and powerful have treated their servants as if they were furniture, but these folk have eyes, ears, and brains -- and a jaundiced view of their employers.

The only thing the high-profile insider journalists have increased access to is bullshit, if you will pardon my use of that ugly but certainly appropriate word.

Spinning for dollars is their game, all too frequently.

Where are the followers I.F. Stone now that we need more of the likes of him?
I.F. Stone's spiritual heirs toil over at Air America, The Nation, Salon, and the lefty half of the blogosphere.
The comments on the HuffPost are interesting. A guy claiming to have cabbied her around says she was always hanging with the "active chickenhawks." His advice: "Follow the aluminum tubes not the yellow cake."

An Atrios poster, whose handle is Mr. Murdes, says "Kadhim Mijbel's testimony on the aluminum tubes debunked their suypposed purpose...Mijbel's most important piece of testimony was in noting the fact arabaic was not used in any of their weapons programs. ... it shows two express purpose- uniform consistency in the programs, and security concerns to keep any developemnt away from of the any of the arabaic/wahhabi leanings of terror....The arabaic forgeries were Israel plants, most likely through Franklin and his close friend Mike Ledeen, whose wife worked in Congress on Senator Santorum's staff and shares close ties with Italian nationals from previous work in the diplomatic circles of global policy."

I believe Ledeen is where JMM has been leading us.
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