Viacom Puts The Gag On CBS News To Help Bush Win
Here's an example of how the corporate media takes a manufactured loss of credibility and then prevents important news from being seen before the election. After Dan Rather and CBS News allowed themselves to be bullied by the Mighty Wurlitzer into eating their story on Bush's pathetic performance in the Guard, without the White House or the Wurlitizer ever rebutting the premise of the piece, the corporate types at Viacom have now bullied CBS News into hiding a more important story until after the election.
CBS News has found the Italian source for the Administration's bogus claim that Saddam was buying yellowcake from Niger to ramp up his nuclear program, and has the first on-camera interview of this person. But Rove has succeeded in silencing CBS News with his trick on the Guard documents, as the GOP supporters in Viacom have told CBS News that there will be no more anti-Bush pieces like this before the election:
The Iraq segment had been ready for broadcast on Sept. 8, CBS said, but was bumped at the last minute for the segment on Mr. Bush's National Guard service. The Guard segment was considered a highly competitive report, one that other journalists were pursuing.
CBS said last night that the report on the war would not run before Nov. 2.
"We now believe it would be inappropriate to air the report so close to the presidential election," the spokeswoman, Kelli Edwards, said in a statement.
The CBS statement followed a report in the online edition of Newsweek that described the frustration of CBS News reporters and producers who said the network had concluded that it could not legitimately criticize the president because of the questions about the National Guard report.
According to the Newsweek report, the "60 Minutes" segment was to have detailed how the administration relied on false documents when it said Iraq had tried to buy a lightly processed form of uranium, known as yellowcake, from Niger. The administration later acknowledged that the information was incorrect and that the documents were most likely fake.
And that my friends is how to destroy a free press. You see, it's OK to lie your way into a war and thousands of deaths and injuries, but it is not OK to get caught being used by the White House and the Wurlitzer without ever having the core argument of your story invalidated.
In other words, it is OK for the Bush Administration to rely on false documents that have no basis in fact and they get to keep their jobs. But Dan Rather and the rest of CBS News are to be silenced and discredited because they may have relied on false documents which are still based in fact.
Viacom is very willing to allow CBS News is to be discredited for using false documents, but is not interested in holding the White House to the same standard.