WMD: Weapons of Mass Deception (Danny Schechter)
There’s no irony behind why this movie had to be made. Today it is the works of documentary filmmakers that bring issues to the forefront: the outsourcing of American jobs, the failures of an administration after a terrorist attack, the plights of the people in Sudan, the gross nature of how corporations operate, and a detailed look into one of the culprits for ignorance in this country, the American media itself like Outfoxed and The Control Room.
ABC, NBC, CBC and some newspapers have over the past twenty years, become less of a resource for reporting facts as they happen. Especially in the years since Bush first took office, they operate more like an extension of the White House press staff, crafting facts into a nice, federally approved package for all of use to hear.
It is Danny Schechter who finally brings the story behind the news to us. The guy’s got plenty of experience in the media world, having been on staff at ABC and CNN, and winning an Emmy-Award winning as a producer. He seems to be one of a handful of the real journalist we depended on growing up, the ones who weren’t afraid to go after the real story, ask the tough questions and get us answers we may not be happy with, but when is the news ever good? And, at least they were doing their friggin’ job.
Schechter takes us frame by frame through the intricate web our government has woven to ensure that the stories that reach the public are on message with their message. That everything is happening according to plan, and what has led to this puppet like actions of the media where no one questions the many blatant mistakes this administration has made or the lies they’ve woven.
WMD confirms many of our suspicions and why, if we really want to know what’s going on in the world around us or even in our own country, we need to turn off the set and get online or pick up a paper. It also brought up some of my own questions, like, “Why is there a U.S. version and a separate International version of CNN online?”
I had come across this during a phone interview with of all people, Paul van Dyke. I had mentioned that there seemed to be some type of controversy behind our media, and that we weren’t getting all the facts. He let me know that it wasn’t a controversy, but a fact. The way he travels from the U.S. and to Europe, often times he’ll be in both places in a given day. The news he hears back at home is widely different from what we’re spoon fed.
As an experiment, I went online to CNN International and CNN U.S., and sure enough, the Abu Ghraib prison scandal was front page on the international site, while the U.S. site, Bush smiled brightly after a successful meeting with the 9/11 commission.
What blew my mind was the information he provided on how journalists are being targeted in Iraq. And it’s not the terrorists behind these attacks.
This movie is powerful and a must see for anyone who gives a damn about more than the Scott Peterson trial. The tag line of “fair and balanced” used today is nothing more than a marketing slogan for a company selling a product. WMD enables us to more clearly understand what is happening, why it’s happening (money of course), and challenge us to do something about.
It could be a simple boycotting the news and all the commercials that come with it. And letting them know that they can’t sell us a bag of goods anymore.
Just in case you didn’t know, there’s a few things the government did recently that I myself didn’t happen to hear on the news. How about how the U.S. Senate has joined with the House to fund a federal program that the the the Association of American Physicians & Surgeons (AAPS) says will lead to mandatory psychological testing of every child in America – without the consent of parents. Needless to say, the AAPS wasn’t too happy with that one, nor should you be.
You’ve heard about the fight over the intelligence bill. But did you know that there is a provision in the bill that would allow staff members of congressmen and senators to look through any American’s tax returns? We can thank Rep. Ernest Istook (R—Okla.) for that one.
To contact Rep. Ernest Istook:
2404 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515-3605
Phone: (202) 225-2132
Fax: (202) 226-1463
Main District Office:
120 North Robinson, Ste. 100
Oklahoma City, OK 73102
Phone: (405) 234-9900
Fax: (405) 234-9909
To contact the media:
Go to www.cbs.com – scroll to the bottom of the main page and click on “Feedback”
500 S. Buena Vista Street
Burbank, CA 91521-4551
Phone number: (818) 460-7477
Email Audience Relations Department at email@example.com
NBC & MSNBC
After five or six clicks, I came to the one page that links to the various email addresses for each department: http://www.msnbc.com/news/435157.asp#msnbc
Go to http://www.cnn.com/feedback/ and choose which CNN property you want to send comments to, CNN.com, CNN TV, CNN International, or CNN Headline News. On the CNN TV page, there were links to all the various reporters and one specifically for news on Iraq.
Short list of other news resources: