02 Apr At CNN, journalism is not Job 1 (a nonpartisan analysis)…
CNN is the epitome of corporate news and they typically do the bidding of the corporatocracy and our neo-fascist, white-supremacist establishment. They marginalize the most authoritative experts and all independent voices in favor of industry mouthpieces and government flacks. They systematically obscure the most pressing issues of our time and promote the narratives of the MIC, PhRMA, AHIP, the American Petroleum Institute, AIPAC, Wall Street, etc. — generally at the expense of journalism, the marginalized, democracy, the environment, and world peace.
CNN’s birth virtually coincided with the selling of the first Iraq War. They pushed propaganda every bit as bad as FoxNews, including the “babies tossed from incubators” nonsense hatched in a Western PR firm, sold by the Kuwaiti ambassador’s daughter.
Then, as now, they did not subject warmongering claims to scrutiny, but promoted them 24/7. They did not, of course, cover the fact that GHWB (Bush I) had given Saddam the “green light” to invade to Kuwait — that it was a trap designed to lure Saddam’s forces into Kuwait and ultimately give the U.S. military bases in Iraq (following the attack on U.S. troops secretly based in Saudi Arabia, Washington and Riyadh wanted our troops out of the KSA). CNN also downplayed the fact that Kuwait had been “slant drilling,” effectively stealing Iraq’s oil. Instead, CNN favored the warmongers’ “Saddam is Hitler” refrain… a comparison that was patently insane and completely detached from any reading of history.
CNN covering the Iraq-Kuwait story’s key facts — rather than pushing baseless warmongering propaganda — would have been JOURNALISM. But that’s not primarily the business they’re in. The primary business they’re in is promoting the U.S.-based corporatocracy and its interests — at the expense of all else, including the lives of every living thing on Earth.
(All of this should come under the category of “DUH!” — but in the age of partisan reality-TV “news,” Americans have chosen sides and gotten all defensive… when the truth is that CNN/MSNBC/FoxNews, etc., are all in the same business and represent the same interests. The rest is mere branding. Duh, duh, DUH, for Chrissakes!)
Even so, while CNN is badly corrupt from a journalistic standpoint — and a dedicated agent of history’s worst empire — they do plenty of reliable, decent reporting. I readily concede that fact. While their anchors are vacuous, amoral careerists, they actually employ dozens of real reporters. It is their editorial policy that makes so much of their programming worthless.
As Jon Stewart said for years, CNN promotes “he said, she said” debates without sorting out the facts for their viewers, effectively propagandizing and dividing Americans while failing to illuminate important stories. Jon Stewart’s excellent Daily Show skewered CNN mercilessly for routinely promoting warmongering, neoconservative claims without investigating them. And on that front, in 2019, they’ve only gotten worse. Like MSNBC and FoxNews, they put one “analyst” after another on their programs, without revealing that they are HIGHLY PAID employees of neocon think tanks, the MIC, PhRMA, and other industries. It’s called dishonest reporting in the service of modern fascists.
My primary objection to their corrupt model of “journalism” is that CNN peddles pro-corporate propaganda that destroys millions of lives, through war, environmental destruction, and other forms of corporate predation.