Matt Taibbi's Ubiquitous Brilliance !
Matt Taibbi's everywhere this month, especially over the past few days. As some reading this may remember (going back over a decade at "the other place"), I've been a huge fan of his for a long time. I was active in Boston political media, back in the early 80's, when his father, Mike, was a leading local newscaster there; and I met him (and worked countless times with his tv station's news staff) a few times, as well.
Matt's promoting his new book, "Hate, Inc.," and as one YouTube commenter put it, Taibbi's two-part interview, "The Deep Rot of American Journalism," with Chris Hedges, over at RT.com, "...is better journalism than the last 10 years of Fox, CNN and MSNBC combined." Personally, I think the quality of this interview's commentary makes the previous comment an understatement!
Meanwhile, over at Rolling Stone, Thursday, Matt published this: "The Liberal Embrace of War."
"American interventionists learned a lesson from Iraq: pre-empt the debate. Now everyone is for regime change"
May 16th, 2019 2:41PM
...The new play in the Trump era involves recognizing Juan Guaidó as president and starving and sanctioning the country. Maduro, encircled, has been resisting.
The American commercial news landscape, in schism on domestic issues, is in lockstep here. Every article is seen from one angle: Venezuelans under the heel of a dictator who caused the crisis, with the only hope a “humanitarian” intervention by the United States.
There is no other perspective...
...Don’t want to invade Syria? Get ready to be denounced as an Assadist. Feel ambivalent about regime change in Venezuela? You must love Putin and Maduro.
People end up either reflexively believing these things, or afraid to deal with vitriol they’ll get if they say something off-narrative. In the media world, it’s understood that stepping out of line on Venezuela or Syria will result in being removed from TV guest lists, loss of speaking income, and other problems.
This has effectively made intellectual objections to regime change obsolete. In the Trump era, things that not long ago aroused widespread horror — from torture to drone assassination to “rendition” to illegal surveillance to extrajudicial detention in brutal secret prisons around the world — inspire crickets now.
A few weeks ago, the New York Times ran an exposé about Guantanamo Bay that should have been a devastating piece of journalism. It showed site officials building a hospice, because prisoners are expected to grow old and die rather than ever sniff release. One prisoner was depicted sitting gingerly in court because of “chronic rectal pain” from being routinely sodomized in CIA prisons.
Ten years ago, Americans would have been deeply ashamed of such stories. Now, even liberals don’t care. The cause of empire has been cleverly re-packaged as part of #Resistance to Trump, when in fact it’s just the same old arrogance, destined to lead to the same catastrophes. Bad policy doesn’t get better just because you don’t let people talk about it.
I'd continue on, but it's a busy day here for yours truly. So, enjoy, watch and read on!