I try to end each week with a break from the very serious subjects that often consume my shows and posts. John Fugelsang joins me on Thursday mornings to help us laugh about some of the craziness we have to face each and every day.
Today we didn’t have a lot of laughs. War hit very close to home this week. Yesterday, we learned that photojournalist Tim Hetherington was killed while covering the war in Libya. And yes, it is a war.
I only met Tim once, and it was via phone. I had the pleasure of interviewing him last November regarding his his Academy Award nominated documentary Restrepo, which he co-directed with Sebastian Junger. But the news of his death in Libya hit me hard. It was unnecessary.
Today, I replayed that interview with him, as my of honoring the man and his work.
Real journalists are a rarity these days in this country. Not for lack of qualified people, but due to the continuing corporate takeover of our media and its continuing quest for higher profits over substantive content. As I’ve said over and over, the news has been canceled here.
So, to find investigative journalist Greg Palast, one has to watch the BBC – or visit his website, or the other bastions of independent truth tellers like Truthout.org. That’s where I found his latest missive, “BP’s Secret Deepwater Blowout,” which he told us about on today’s show.
If you think that the internet is the last safe place for bloggers, would-be journalists and the rest of us to publish our thoughts, ideas and the product of our investigations, you might want to re-think the “safe” aspect of it. Pam Spaulding, editor and publisher of the widely-read Pam’s House Blend was just the victim of extortion. Although sleazy and unethical, this type of extortion is unfortunately legal.
As Pam explained (Is this the end of predator copyright troll Righthaven’s flight under the media radar?), she was targeted for copyright infringement by Righthaven, and settled with them for an amount that has virtually bankrupted Pam’s House Blend. But it could have been worse.
It’s a sickening story that’s played out too many times, but hasn’t been told because others are afraid of being similarly targeted. I’m not sure what that says about me, other than I’d better get to work scrubbing this site of photos. I guess I know what I’ll be doing this weekend…
So, that covers the oil spills, warfare, and websites. As for the wingnuts, John Fugelsang and I did spend a few minutes talking about Donald Trump and Andrew Breitbart’s recent media appearances. Enuf said.