FAIR founder Jeff Cohen's Park Center for Independent Media has decided to give its new Izzy Award (3/4/09) "for special achievement in independent media" to Glenn Greenwald and Amy Goodman, specifically lauding the "two pillars of independent journalism" for "pathbreaking journalistic courage and persistence in confronting conventional wisdom, official deception and controversial issues":
Week after week, in meticulously documented and detailed blog posts, [Salon's Glenn Greenwald] skewers hypocrisy, deception and revisionism on the part of the powers that be in government and the media…. With devastatingly crisp arguments, Greenwald has inveighed against torture and defended constitutional rights for all, whether they be "enemy combatants" or American protesters. He has toughly criticized both Republicans and Democrats, and his blogging frequently sparks debate in major media and on Capitol Hill.
Over the past 12 years, Amy Goodman has built Democracy Now! into the largest public media collaboration–it can be found on television, radio and the Internet–in the country…. Democracy Now! offers a daily cutting-edge broadcast featuring issues, experts and debates rarely heard in corporate media, including the voices of both policymakers and those affected by policy. Through timely interviews with heads of state, opposition leaders, artists and organizers, Goodman in 2008 maintained an ongoing, tenacious focus on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, U.S. violations of the Geneva Conventions, racial justice issues such as the still-displaced poor of New Orleans, and political repression overseas.
The Izzy Award itself "is named after the legendary dissident journalist Isidor Feinstein 'Izzy' Stone, who launched his muckraking newsletter I.F. Stone's Weekly in 1953 during the height of the McCarthy witch hunts." An influential figure in the formation of FAIR's journalistic ideology, "Stone, who died in 1989, exposed government deceit and corruption while championing civil liberties, racial justice and international diplomacy." See our 20th Anniversary issue of Extra!: "On the Shoulders of Giants: The unbroken tradition of press criticism" (1-2/06) by Robin Andersen.