Glenn Greenwald Nails The Corporate Media

Let me begin by stating that I enjoy watching Erin Burnett. She was one of the reasons I began watching CNBC and paying attention to the stock market. Yes, I guess I’m that shallow.

Glenn Greenwald is one of the best investigative journalists today. He is a fearless writer who speaks uncomfortable truths.

Greenwald is a progressive, and I often disagree with what he has to say. But he makes you think and re-examine your own biases. He is Mr. Civil Libertarian: a man who criticizes the Obama administration just as fervently as he went after the Bush administration.

This week, Greenwald tackles the media culture. Specifically he focuses on CNN’s Erin Burnett, the new host of Outfront and a woman who made her bones as a Wall Street reporter. Burnett, Greenwald says, is a puppet for Wall Street. A sample:

[On her debut show Monday} She featured a video clip of herself explaining to one of the protesters that the U.S. Government made money from TARP, and then demanded to know if that changed his negative views of Wall Street.

This is far from the first time Burnett has served as spokesperson for Wall Street; it’s basically what her “journalistic” career is.   She angered Bill Maher a couple years ago when arguing that the rich have suffered along with the poor and middle class as part of the financial crisis, and that it would be wrong to “soak the rich” because they’re already paying so much taxes.  She caused Rush Limbaugh to gush over her when she argued on TV in 2007 that all Americans benefit when the rich get richer: “the majority of Americans directly benefit from what happens on Wall Street,” she proclaimed, just over a year before the financial collapse.

Greenwald eviscerates the cozy relationship Burnett and other financial reporters have with Wall Street CEOs. Burnett is engaged to a Citigroup executive and is friends with numerous financial big wigs.

This is not just Burnett’s problem; it is a symptom of the modern corporate media culture. Gone are the days of ink stained reporters who were middle class and lived the lives of Average Americans. Instead, “journalists” make lavish salaries, are treated as big-shots, attend the same parties as those they cover, eat at the same restaurants and take their kids to the same schools.

They occupy the same milieu, in short. Objectivity, no matter how much journalists deny it, is thrown out the window. For what journalist will admit that he’s friends with the people he’s covering? When does that announcement enter into someone’s analysis? The only time I can remember is when a spouse is working on one side or another-e.g. Nina Easton announcing that her husband works for Mitt Romney.

The corporate media is in bed with the Establishment: From Wall Street, to Capitol Hill to the Pentagon. The media do the Establishment’s bidding. They are little better at “objective” reporting (whatever that’s come to mean) than Pravda used to be. Especially when a Democrat occupies the White House.


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