The Paris attacks by the group known as ISIS have dominated news outlets, but if the goal really is to prevent the recurrence of such violence, then reporting that eliminates political context can’t be the way forward.
NYT (Mis)Spells Out Debt Problem for SYRIZA A New York Times report (1/29/15) by Liz Alderman suggested that Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis, from the anti-austerity SYRIZA party, doesn’t understand his country’s debt problems: When pressed to describe how Greece would pay for bonds falling due in the coming months without taking the €7 billion installment, Mr. Varoufakis replied, “Let’s not talk about details.” To SYRIZA’s detractors, such remarks might signal that the new government does not understand the magnitude of Greece’s financial challenges. Before becoming Finance minister, Varoufakis taught economics at Cambridge, the University of Athens, University of Sydney […]
Making ‘Torture’ Impossible When the Washington Post (12/9/14) described on the Senate Intelligence Committee report on the treatment of prisoners at CIA “black sites,” it said it documented “harsh interrogation measures,” “painful procedures” and even “seemingly arbitrary violence.” But what it didn’t say was that this treatment was “torture”—except when saying it was “deemed torture by program critics including President Obama.” And that was no accident. In a Post story (12/9/14) about the “old debate” about torture terminology, Philip Bump quotes the justification Cameron Barr (then national security editor, now national editor) gave to Brian Stelter (7/2/10) in 2010: “After […]
This week on CounterSpin: The current outbreak of the Ebola virus in West Africa is unprecedented in its scale. But while some media focus on experimental vaccines, health experts say we ought to be talking about fundamental inequities in basic healthcare delivery. We’ll talk about ebola with Laurie Garrett, senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations.
Also on the show: The largest environmental march ever brought hundreds of thousands into New York City streets, but the People’s Climate Watch was mostly ignored by the media. As was its companion action, Flood Wall Street, which targeted corporations behind climate instability with civil disobedience. Is the people’s voice on climate change being ignored by the corporate media just as it’s been ignored by corporate backed governments? We’ll speak with Anne Petermann, director of the Global Justice Ecology Project, and the Climate-Connections blog.
Beltway talk shows’ flaky climate coverage
On February 16, 2014, all three Sunday morning programs featured the climate change topic prominently. Unfortunately, quality didn’t match quantity, reflecting the “balance as bias” framework of years past, with scientists debating nonscientists and facts vying with opinions and political platforms—sometimes to the point of incoherence.