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Thursday, January 05, 2006

Not So Good Times

The NYT's admission that it sat on the Dec 16th story about the President's legally sketchy authorization of wiretapping by the NSA without court-approved warrants keeps eating at me. The Times said it "delayed publication for a year." Obviously, liberals immediately jumped to the conclusion that the story might have been published before the 2004 election. What if it were true that the Times delayed the story to avoid potentially influencing the election? What's a public to do to stay informed in a timely fashion? Isn't it the responsibility of our news media to publish the truth regardless of the convenience of the story's timing?

For further reading on the Times' delay of the story, check out this Jan 1, 2006 piece from the NYT Public Editor and this from AlterNet yesterday.

4 Comments:

Anonymous Mark said...

If this program actually saved a few lives would you feel differently or is the fact that the government spied on 1000 or so suspected terroists (most U.S. citizens) just complete anathema to you?

Are you more upset about the program itself or the fact that the NYT held the story back.

Just curious.

"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

January 06, 2006 3:28 PM  
Blogger J said...

I'm upset about both the program and the fact that the Times held the story back. The program is illegal, and even if it had yielded any positive results in terms of catching terrorists I would have a problem with it. People with a lot more courage than me struggled for years to give us certain civil protections that I don't want to see pushed aside haphazardly. My understanding is that the law says that court approval can be requested up to 72 hours after the fact, and yet the NSA still didn't feel compelled to go to the courts. If Mr. Bush told them to do so he's guilty of the same kind of crimes that President Nixon committed.

The NYT holding the story is a symptom of a larger problem with our news media. I don't care who's in office. It's the responsibility of our news media to be a pain in the ass to the powers that be, questioning constantly. How else can we keep our leaders on the straight and narrow?

January 09, 2006 11:34 PM  
Anonymous Mark said...

I can definitely get behind what you are saying here. Not sure how a 72 hour retroactive approval works though. That alone seems pretty sketchy to me.

January 10, 2006 4:14 PM  
Blogger J said...

PS President Bush wasn't exactly truthful about his wiretaps in this appearance in NY from April 2004.

January 10, 2006 10:16 PM  

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