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Sat

13

Oct

2007

Food For Thought - The Pernicious Hypocrisy Of Frank Rich Of The New York Times
Saturday, 13 October 2007 17:42
by Eric Larsen

Food For Thought - The Pernicious Hypocrisy Of Frank Rich Of The New York Times (Number 13, Part 1)

Today the US media serves as propaganda ministry for the government’s wars and police state.
— Paul Craig Roberts, “Conservatism Isn’t What It Used To Be” (Sept. 7, 2007)
We have rendered the nation deaf and dumb. We no longer have the capacity for empathy.
— Chris Hedges, “Iran, the Next Quagmire” (Sept. 4, 2007)
Remedy: In order to turn this trend around, the people of the US must begin to acquire the anti-authoritarian traits of empathy and engagement.
— Phil Rockstroh, “Q and A for the People of a Forsaken Republic” (October 2, 2007)
Oh, New York Times, oh, New York Times, are you infantile, criminal, or delusional?
— Eric Larsen, “Letter of Lamentation to America,” Part 3 (July 29, 2007)

1.

Just imagine this for a moment. Imagine that you could actually set aside the fear of and the burning hatred for the fraudulent, treasonous, and criminal leadership of the United States that any normal thinking citizen should be feeling right now. Imagine that you could set those feelings aside — maybe thanks to a sudden certainty that someone — inside the military, perhaps — really will prevent the Bush-Cheney junta from perpetrating, sometime between now and November 2008, another 9/11 followed by a declaration of national emergency and the locking down of us all down in a perfect and perfectly prepared-for police state. All of that, as if it needs saying, so that they could, happily unhindered by us, go about their adolescent games of bombing much of the middle east into oblivion in order to “save” it for oil.

I myself devoutly wish I could do exactly that, that I really could have faith in a good outcome and could therefore set aside my present terror, fear, hatred, and rage.

I can’t, though, knowing that it would be irresponsible because I would become immediately less alert. But I can pretend to do it, at least for a long enough time to get this piece written, under its title of “The Special and Poisonous Hypocrisy of Frank Rich.”

That is to say, I am now embarking upon the writing not solely of a political but also of a literary essay. And I’m doing so even as I continue to fear every new move of Cheney’s reptilian brain or every new deep-psychotic-triggered tic in The Boy’s behavior that might incline him the more readily to “Cut the Big One,” as the wonderfully clear-sighted and strong-hearted Sheila Samples put it.

Literary essay, did I hear someone snicker? Did I hear someone say, Ha! with scorn? Did I hear someone ask, Don’t I remember “Lapis Lazuli,” written in another year of dread and fear, 1938? And have I forgotten the start of the poem, where the argument is relayed that the arts are of no conceivable use or importance at a time when the realities of destruction and war loom?


To wit:
I have heard that hysterical women say
They are sick of the palette and fiddle-bow.
Of poets that are always gay,
For everybody knows or else should know
That if nothing drastic is done
Aeroplane and Zeppelin will come out.
Pitch like King Billy bomb-balls in
Until the town lie beaten flat.

All true enough. But that’s only the start of the poem. It continues, and as it does, Yeats produces a great and eloquent Nay, explaining that the arts remain just as important (how important? absolutely important) in time of threat and dread as at any other, and that even if world were about to end, even “should the last scene be there, / The great stage curtain about to drop,” even then those who “perform their tragic” roles,

If worthy their prominent part in the play,

Do not break up their lines to weep.

“If worthy their prominent part. . . ” I’m interested, as I’ve been my entire adult life, in knowing and emulating what it is that makes a person “worthy” in the sense that Yeats means here — and elsewhere. Reading the whole poem is always useful for anyone with an interest like mine. But the worthiness question aside, it’s obvious — isn’t it? — that if you’ve got a heart as big as Yeats’, then you’re going to see to it that the arts be made to stick around no matter what. And, I might add, you’re going to do all you can to make them stick around without their degenerating into the shallow, the cheap, or the political — as they’ve so largely done in our poor soulless Age of Simplification — but instead you’re going to see to it that they stick around the way they’re supposed to and the way they must: Big and grand and bold and high and essential to the heart, the self, and the mind.

Ah, yes, grand thoughts. My heart be with the old poets†, that’s my view , as it’s been since I was a student. And that’s the reason why, even though the Bushiscti may be about to spark the blinding world-white-flash any second now (“The great stage curtain [be] about to drop”), even though they may be about to fill “this excellent canopy, the air”†† with cancerous malignancy and the dust of death — all for the sake of their snake-skin wallets and their phallo-centric-boys’ greed-lust — well, that’s the reason why, in spite of my terror at what the boy-bastards might do next, I’m nevertheless going to embark on a big and grand and bold and high literary essay. And it’s going to take on a big subject.

Namely? Well, in general, the subject will be those hundreds of thousands of men and women throughout the media who out-Faustus Faustus††† in their having made a pact with Mephostophilis himself although for what end I have no clear idea, other than to destroy the republic and bring ruinous harm to the globe and perhaps an end to us all. Whatever their reason, these legions and armies of men and women putatively serving the nation’s people have agreed — against ethics, against morality, against decency, against good — on a full-time basis to lie, deceive, occlude, obfuscate, distort, twist, ignore, to do anything, in short, so long as it’s not tell or speak or reveal to regular American people the least iota of simple plain truth about the secret, hidden, rogue, or “overworld” government that’s now malevolently and maliciously determining life-and-death matters for us all on the local, the regional, the national, and the international level. See Peter Dale Scott’s The Road to 9/11 for the most recent of the several indisputably important scholarly analyses of this awful truth.

†. “My ghost be with the old philosophers!”
(Christopher Marlowe, The Tragical History of Dr. Faustus, I,iii, 59.)
††. I have of late—but wherefore I know not—lost all my mirth, forgone all custom of exercises; and indeed it goes so heavily with my disposition that this goodly frame, the earth, seems to me a sterile promontory, this most excellent canopy, the air, look you, this brave o’erhanging firmament, this majestical roof fretted with golden fire, why, it appears no other thing to me than a foul and pestilent congregation of vapours. What a piece of work is a man! how noble in reason! how infinite in faculty! in form and moving how express and admirable! in action how like an angel! in apprehension how like a god! the beauty of the world! the paragon of animals! And yet, to me, what is this quintessence of dust? man delights not me: no, nor woman neither, though by your smiling you seem to say so.
(Hamlet, II, ii, 291-296; Hamlet to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern)
†††. Speak the speech, I pray you, as I pronounced it to / you, trippingly on the tongue: but if you mouth it, / as many of your players do, I had as lief the town-crier / spoke my lines. Nor do not saw the air too much with / your hand, thus, but use all gently; for in the very / torrent, tempest, and, as I may say, the whirlwind of / passion, you must acquire and beget a temperance / that may give it smoothness. O, it offends me to the / soul to hear a robustious periwig-pated fellow tear / a passion to tatters, to very rags, to split the ears of the / groundlings, who for the most part are capable of / nothing but inexplicable dumbshows and noise: I would / have such a fellow whipped for o’erdoing Termagant; / it out-herods Herod: pray you, avoid it.
(Hamlet III, ii, 1-16. Hamlet to the Players)


But back to those in the media. Liars on so massive a scale as we see among media people today — such absolutely enormous numbers of hypocrites and liars all busy at one concerted task may be a thing unprecedented in human history — outside, I quickly add, of organized religion. On top of the enormity in pure numbers, those among them who are actually on air or in print (not to mention their writers and producers and packagers) are so practiced and so devoted in employing their deceit that these wretched liars very, very often are able to deceive so skillfully and so subtly that they actually cause their audiences to experience both gratitude and an increasing fidelity to those very liars who are lying to them, who are misleading them, and who are blinding them to the truth of 9/11 and thus the truth of the malicious, dangerous, anti-Constitutional government that now has us under its control.

Shhh.

Some quiet and respect, please.

We’re going to talk about “poverty,” perhaps, or “gender issues” or “women’s rights” or “electoral reform,” etc., etc. — but, however reverently the “progressive” media people bow their heads to these “good” and “humane” and “democratic” and “fairness-centered” topics or “issues,” all of it — in light of the huge true and present danger — is nothing more than fluff, it’s chaff in the wind, it’s like those diversionary aluminum strips that used to be tossed into the high atmosphere to confuse radar by functioning as false targets, thus diverting enemy predators from aircraft. It’s snake oil. It’s hokum.

It’s all used as diversion from the one huge lie of omission, of towering importance. The truth is that none of those subjects matters a hoot in light of the far more enormous and more pressing truth that, thanks to the domestic policy of our present junta-“leadership,” we’re about to losethe entire republic itself and all our freedoms while our malignant and malicious “government” — a government that can be halted only and solely by the exposure of 9/11 truth — embarks upon its further plans not only for implementing the domestic prison-state but for achieving the even greater prison-state of permanent global war.

In a situation such as that — such as we’re at present all into about 9/11 truth, commission or omission — seems to me treasonous against the republic, against the Constitution, and against the American people.

To speak of such things is to speak of enormities. But it is also to speak the simple, plain truth. We are in a state of emergency such as our republic has never before in, and we are being lied to about it, massively and absolutely, by the entirety of that very element of socio-political society that at one time in history was the indispensable freedom-preserving element — namely, the “Fourth Estate,” now become “propaganda ministry for the government’s wars and police state.”

That the Fourth Estate is now our most vile enemy — more vile, by merit of being willingly in lying servitude to it, even than the traitorous and putrescent government it perversely nourishes, a government determined to imprison us all.

To say such things — to say them because they’re true — is, indeed, an enormity. So much so that it seems to me it would be a good idea, like taking a breath of fresh air, to put, at this point, another section-number on the page.

2.


The entire phenomenon of a lying media, then, will be my general subject. I’ve written about this before, not only in A Nation Gone Blind itself, but also in later pieces like my recent piece on Amy Goodman. That subject — of the overall media — will remain in the background, however, by merit of its being already so familiar to anyone likely to be a reader of this present essay. If I’m wrong about that in the case of anyone, I’d urge a look at A Nation Gone Blind.

My specific subject, on the other hand, will be a single and very powerful person who is at work within the media. That person is the outstandingly sophisticated master of mendacity who deceives for The New York Times op-ed page on Sundays, Frank Rich. I have chosen Rich in part, of course, because of his eminence and extremely high profile, and because these aspects of the writer serve to make him all the more repugnant in his effectiveness as a betrayer and misleader of the people. That he so willingly works to help keep in power the malignant and pernicious “leaders” who in turn seem aiming to destroy us — such apparent zeal raises him both in interest and in repugnance.

That he does his work with so apparently a perfect absence of the agenbite of inwit makes him simultaneously fascinating and abominable, as does the fact additionally that he does his treasonous work while, with masterly success, leading his benighted readers to believe that he’s is actually telling the truth and serving their best interests.

Before we get to specific analyses of Rich’s writing, though, I think I should clarify two points that I consider axiomatic and that will help show why I consider the matter at hand — our lying media — to be a matter so extremely, almost absolutely, important.

After following six years’ worth of study on the part of many gifted and dedicated scholars and writers, and after four years of study on my own part, I take it as a proper, just, and correct view, a view that would be taken by any intelligent, genuinely thinking, and seriously observant person, that the events of 9/11 indeed were, in Carolyn Baker’s words, “pre-meditated mass murder by the United States government.”

Exactly what elements of “government” executed the crimes is still inexactly known. Almost certainly, it was a “shadow” or “rogue” element, as Webster G. Tarpley calls it in his brilliant 2005 Synthetic Terror: Made in USA or an “overworld” element, as Peter Dale Scott calls it in his new and extremely important study, The Road to 9/11.

But although it may not yet be known precisely what domestic United States elements perpetrated the 9/11 crimes, still some elements did do it. And now, with that said, I come to the second point that I consider axiomatic and that, again, should help show the importance of the subject of the lying media. This point has two parts or steps to it, and the first has to do with what the purpose of the 9/11 murders and building-destructions was. And it’s now irrefutable that the purpose to scare and intimidate the American people so badly that they would permit their “leaders” to use any methods they wished in order to “protect” the republic and its people from the enemy that “attacked” them on 9/11.

That this “enemy” was fictional and the attack self-created and self-inflicted didn’t then matter. Americans were scared enough to believe that the enemy was real, and our criminal leaders immediately scared them further by making use of a frightening name, “Terrorism.” Thus the “War on Terrorism” was born out of falsehood and lies. The plan went forward to strip Americans of their civil and Constitutional liberties at home, and to wage unjust and illegal war without hindrance abroad.

The first step in the point I take as axiomatic, then, is that 9/11, a fraud through and through, was the visible starting point of — and the faked excuse for — a concerted program of reactionism, theft, treason, crime, and illegal, unchecked global militarism.

The second part of the point I take as axiomatic is very simple and I think indisputable. The Bush junta is responsible now for a six-year-long string of crimes. That it has proven itself unstoppable for that length of time is a grim gift that we owe thanks for to a corrupt, bought-off, and complicit congress that has either approved or at the very least failed to hold the junta accountable for a single one of those crimes — with the exception of one very, very, very important crime, the crime that made all the subsequent crimes possible, namely, of course, 9/11.

This is why I said before (and got most confusedly “criticized” for) and why I say again that only the exposure of the truth about 9/11, followed by appropriate measures holding accountable those responsible for the crimes of 9/11 or for enabling those crimes (Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Air Force general Richard Myers, just for three) or abetting them (Giuliani, Rice, and Powell, just for three more).

One of the significant things about this point — that 9/11 truth alone can slow the junta, make it accountable for its crimes, or end it — is that six years is long enough to prove that no established branch of government or of law inside the United States is going to expose this truth or begin prosecutions because of it. Therefore? Therefore, the job must be done — and can be done only — by the nation’s people.

The central facts of the case in the heinous and witheringly cold-blooded 9/11 crimes, in spite of certain remaining unknowns, are evident, transparent, and eminently provable. Any thinking, reading, intelligent, and observant person can discover this inexpressibly important fact simply by taking the time and mustering the interest to familiarize him- or herself with even some of the essential scholarly work that has been done on the history, the truth, and the facts of 9/11.

The situation is this:

Nothing less than a third of the population of the U.S. doubts the “official” story about 9/11 and either suspects or is convinced that 9/11 was an “inside job.” Even though a person wishes it were two-thirds instead of one, this number is momentous and significant.

Let’s hypothesize for a moment how we might reasonably classify the American population into the smallest number of groups possible without there being overlap among them. This is a good and useful exercise in rhetoric, thought, and logic of the kind once included during fall semesters in English 101 classrooms all over the land but is now as likely to go untouched. I’m going to propose, given our interest here and now, that all Americans can be distinguished as belonging to one of three groups, and that these groups will be distinct from one another yet will leave no one out. Hence:

1) Thinking and observant Americans.
2) Blind Americans, those for whom the media determine most if not all “reality” (cf A Nation Gone Blind)
3) Bought, guilty, complicit Americans, those who continue to deny and suppress 9/11 truth while at the same time knowing that truth.

Anyone who went through a good English 101 course knows that these groups need not be and very likely will not be equal or anywhere near equal in the number of their members. And that’s true here. The likelihood is that Group 2 will be the largest, since the polls telling us that one-third of Americans embrace or lean toward 9/11 truth suggest simultaneously that two-thirds don’t. It follows that that two thirds must be the less-informed, the less-observant, the less-inquisitive two thirds. I’m going to call them “blind.”

And so where does this leave us? Two thirds of Americans — roughly — are blind. One third of Americans — roughly — is thinking, observant, and inquisitive. This means that only the leftovers fill up Group 3, making it clearly, patently, and obviously the smallest group of the three. And yet, though the smallest, it is also — as things stand now — the most powerful.

It’s the most powerful, and it’s also the group that could be renamed the group of liars, the group of deceivers, the group of falsifiers and repressors, the group of those who are complicit in the crimes of 9/11 by merit of hiding the truth of those crimes, the group of those who are treasonous by merit of covering up known crimes of treason, and, finally, they could be renamed the group of explicit enemies against the entirety of Group one, while simultaneously being implicit enemies of all of Group two (even though those in Group two don’t know that, since they don’t understand that those in Group 3 are liars but believe them to be truth-tellers).

And exactly who is in the criminal Group 3? Well, Amy Goodman is in it, Frank Rich is in it, Nancy Pelosi is in it, Harry Reid is in it, John Conyers is in it, all the media people I mentioned before as choosing to be liars are in it, Adolph Giuliani is in it, Elliot Spitzer is in it and Larry Silverstein is in it — and so on. See also here.

In short, members of the Bush administration, members of the houses of congress, and the huge numbers of people who work in the mainstream media — these are the members of Group 3. What do you suppose their actual numbers come to? How many of them do you suppose there really are? Well, there are one hundred in the Senate and 433 in the House for a total of 533.

What shall we say for the number of people constituting the Bush administration, including cabinet members, close advisors, ambassadors, and so on? How about five hundred, for a running total now of 1,033. And how many work in the mainstream media, print, video, and radio — including NPR, Pacifica, and the like? Let’s estimate that those working in or near the editorial side of the media come to something like 25,000, including everybody from the tiniest little radio stations in the tiniest little towns, every reporter in every paper, every advisor in every station, every announcer, every editor, every columnist. If we’re at all close, we’ve got a total now for the membership of Group 3 that comes to 26,033.

Now we’ve got to add every corporate owner of the media, the membership of every corporate board that controls the media, and every head of and influential staff in pertinent agencies from, say, the FCC on through the Motion Picture Association of America.

Let’s say there are a thousand people — a well-dressed yet sleazy reptilian in-group of schmoozers and their like-minded “friends” who make up among themselves the membership of all the most important corporate boards in America. That means we’re up to 27,033. Let’s triple — no, let’s quadruple — the total just to be sure we’ve got everyone, including high elements of the military and of the numerous intelligence agencies. Quadrupling gives us a grand total of 108,132.

Now. Those hundred-thousand people — they’re our enemies. They’re the obvious enemies of Group 1 and, as I suggested, the enemies also of Group 2, though Group 2 doesn’t know it.

What do you think? Let’s say there are 300,000,000 people in the U.S. We know already that 100,000,000 of them are in Group 1 and either know, suspect, or lean toward 9/11 Truth. Even leaving Group 2 out of the argument for the moment, that suggests that 100,000,000 people are being held hostage by 108,132!.

I, for one, hate being ruled by gangs. I, for one, hate being ruled by thuggery. I, for one, hate being ruled by deceit, deception, cover-up, lies, thievery, criminality, treason, and fraud. I, for one, hate the “left gatekeepers,” some of whom you can see as listed here by the great Barrie Zwicker in his equally great book, Towers of Deception.

I, for one, agree with Zwicker when he writes (on pp. 238-239, in Towers of Deception) that

Revealing the fraud of 9/11 in my opinion is the single most important task faced by civilization today. That it was dared is the supreme Achilles heel of the Fourth Reich. If enough people could be awakened to the enormity of the crime, and who its perpetrators are, they become a politically-relevant constituency. Then the possibility of a cleansing transformation would emerge. [emphasis added] Every worthwhile initiative you can name, be it environmental, social, political or economic, would benefit from politically-relevant exposure of the Great Deception.

I agree also with Webster Tarpley when he writes the following:

But as long as Bush can keep his base of 30-35% of the US population, he can wage war in Iraq indefinitely, and possibly widen that war to Syria and Iran. Bush’s hold on his base is due largely to the power of the 9/11 myth over certain parts of the American people. Whenever Bush is held accountable for anything, his response is to cite 9/11. There is only one way to erode Bush’s hard core base, and that is by attacking the 9/11 myth. Destroy the 9/11 myth, and the September criminals may be called to account. Destroy the 9/11 myth, and Bush will be neutralized. Peace-loving governments and institutions around the world must address this task, with a campaign of denunciation, exposure, and political education on the truth about 9/11 and the nature of terrorism. One vehicle for this would be an Independent International Truth Commission on 9/11, modeled on the Russell-Sartre Tribunal for Vietnam. The convocation of such a truth commission for 9/11 is more urgent than ever, and should be top priority for anti-war forces well before the Congressional elections a year from now. [Written in 2005 — EL]

And I agree with Paul Craig Roberts when he wrote a month or two ago that:

Unless Congress immediately impeaches Bush and Cheney, a year from now the US could be a dictatorial police state at war with Iran.

I don’t agree with Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, the tragically disappointing John Conyer, with Hillary Clinton or Barrack Obama or John Edwards, with Adolph Giuliani or Elliot Spitzer or Larry Silverstein, and I don’t agree with

[i]ndividuals and media outlets that . . . include David Corn and The Nation; Amy Goodman of Democracy Now!; Chip Berlet, senior analyst at Political Research Associates in Somerville, Massachusetts; David Barsamian of Alternative Radio; Michael Albert of Z Magazine; Alexander Cockburn; Norman Solomon; The Progressive; Mother Jones; Alternet.org; Global Exchange; PBS; South End Press; Public Research Associates; FAIR/ Extra!; Counterspin; Columbia Journalism Review; Deep Dish TV; Working Assets; Molly Ivins [R.I.P. — EL]; Ms Magazine; Inter Press Service; MoveOn.org; Greg Palast; David Zupan; Northwest Media Project. . .

And guess who else I don’t agree with. Hey, you got it on the first try! I don’t agree with Frank Rich.

In the spring semester of 1960, when I was in my second freshman semester of college, I began learning about writing, even though half the time I didn’t know I was learning. And then much later, sometime in the early 1980s, in a seminar at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, the seminar leader happened to ask me — it was a mixed seminar, and I was there as a literary member of it — how I would define writing. He knew that I was a writer of both fiction and non-fiction, and I knew that any good definition of good writing would necessarily be equally applicable to both (and, I would say now, also to poetry). And what I found myself telling him, not knowing before that moment that I’d already formulated the definition, possibly over the span of a couple of decades, was this:

Writing is telling the truth in a way that itself is also true.

It’s a literary definition, but I did tell you that this was going to be a literary essay — and, besides, all writing should be literary writing.

Now, as we draw ever closer to the narrow subject of Frank Rich, I would like to ask readers to consider what things I learned when, on Sunday, September 17, 2006 — just a bit over a year ago — I opened up the Times and found this passage in Rich’s op ed piece, “The Longer the War, the Larger the Lies”:

You’d think that after having been caught concocting the scenario that took the nation to war in Iraq, the White House would mind the facts now. But this administration understands our culture all too well. This is a country where a cable news network (MSNBC) offers in-depth journalism about one of its anchors (Tucker Carlson) losing a prime-time dance contest and where conspiracy nuts have created a cottage industry of books and DVD’s by arguing that hijacked jets did not cause 9/11 and that the 9/11 commission was a cover-up. (The fictionalied “Path to 9/11,” supposedly based on the commission’s report, only advanced the nuts’ case.) If you’re a White House stuck in a quagmire in an election year, what’s the percentage in starting to tell the truth now? It’s better to game the system.

Just for information’s sake, I mention that the next paragraph of Rich’s piece beings with this sentence, providing an excellent early example — there will be many, many more in Part 2 of this essay — of Rich doing the exact thing (lying) that he’s simultaneously accusing others of doing: “The untruths,” says he, “are flying so fast that untangling them can be a full-time job.”

I’ll say. What I argued a year ago when I wrote about this piece is worth going back to — and I’ll do that in Part 2. For now, though, let’s just take care of that question — the question of what a person learns from reading this one paragraph and a sentence of Frank Rich.

Another question as a way into the first one: Is Rich a writer, by our definition?

And it’s impossible — isn’t it? — for the answer to be anything other than “No.” Is Rich telling the truth in a way that itself is also true?

No, you can’t be a writer by that standard and at the same time use smear and innuendo; assert half-truths as though they were whole truths; and — at the end — twist things so as to allow yourself acquittal for doing the very thing you’re condemning others for doing.

Let’s pin this down. The smear and innuendo lie in the cheap and slummy phrases “conspiracy nuts,” “cottage industry,” and “the nuts’ case.” Now, just consider this fact: By September 2007, I know with absolute certainty (because I myself read them or had read them at or by that time) that, at the very least, these books on 9/11 had been published, were in print, and were available for anyone to read; and I know also that any single one of them would reveal to a serious and open-minded reader that research into 911 truth is hardly the domain solely of “nut cases” but is predominantly the domain of serious, principled, dedicated, broadly experienced researchers, scholars, commentators, and historians:

Ahmed, Nafeez Mosaddeq. The War on Freedom: How and Why America was Attacked September 11, 2001. (2002)
Ahmed, Nafeez Mosaddeq. The War on Truth: 9/11, Disinformation, and the Anatomy of Terrorism. (2005)
Chossudovsky, Michel. America's "War On Terrorism. (2005)
Griffin, David Ray. The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions and Distortions. (2005)
Griffin, David Ray. The New Pearl Harbor: Disturbing Questions About the Bush Administration and 9/11. (2004)
Hicks, Sander. The Big Wedding. (2005)
Morgan, Rowland, and Ian Henshall. 9/11 Revealed. (2005) .
Ruppert, Michael C. Crossing the Rubicon: The Decline of the American Empire at the End of the Age of Oil. (2004)
Tarpley, Webster Griffin. 9/11 Synthetic Terror: Made in USA. (2005)

If Rich is writing in late 2006 and is still making cheap shots at the 9/11 truth movement with smears and half truths — “arguing that hijacked jets did not cause 9/11” is at best a peripheral and minority aspect of 9/11 thinking; by alluding only to it and in a quick and phony dance-step ignoring the central concerns of most 9/11 scholarship, Rich lies by putting a half truth in place of a whole one — if he’s still doing that sort stuff in late 2006, what does a person learn about him?

Well, a person learns that he’s 1) either a far, far greater liar even than he seems, since he’s claiming not to know things he really does know; or that 2) he’s a dismal mediocrity if not outright failure as a reporter, since he’s failed totally to make contact with or any use of the most visible and essential of research materials relevant to his subject; or you learn that he’s 3) neither a writer of principle nor a man of principle, since he’s willing to slur, smear, defame, lie, and present truth as falsehood (after all, the 9/11 commission really was a coverup) — all because his owners tell him that’s what he’s got to do if he wants to keep his job.

What was that definition of writing — something about telling the truth in a way that itself is also true, I believe?

And here what do we have instead of someone fitting that definition? The actuality looks pretty grim. We’re dealing here with the one subject — 9/11 truth — that’s more than just arguably the single most important matter that exists in political and cultural affairs today. Whether the free republic will become a police state within the next ten months depends on it; whether the cultural, artistic, and literary life of the nation will continue its decline into the empty and ephemeral rather than strengthening once again depends on it; whether genuine care and husbanding of the planet itself will actually occur depends on it; the lives themselves of millions, and the safety from fear, disease, penury, suffering, and starvation of millions upon millions more in countries abroad depend on it; and the historic grounding, the dignity, any part of what may still be left of human and common good in the United Sates, depends on it. All of these things and more depend on the exposure of the high crimes of 9/11 and the holding accountable of those responsible for them.

It seems to me one of the most, if not the most, important matter in the world today. And what do we have in Frank Rich when he looks at this matter? Well, a year ago we had 1) a dishonest, contemptuous, smearing clown who either really was totally ignorant of the truth of his subject, or 2) a person who was lying monstrously about something he did know, claiming not to know, or 3) a person who was the true and complete whore, performing anything whatsoever that his paying customer, in this case the New York Times, asked him to do — oral, anal, animal, other — and doing nothing whatsoever that that customer would not pay for, however true, serious, honorable, and important that other thing might be.

This is not a matter of telling the truth in a way that is also itself true.

Instead, this is — well, being struck speechless, let me leave the work to you. I suggest that you choose one, none, some, or all of the following:

  • This is fraud;
  • This is hypocrisy;
  • This is treason;
  • This is the aiding and abetting of monstrous criminality;
  • This is frivolity, depravity, poisonous non-seriousness;
  • This is total inconsideration for the welfare of an entire nation and its people;
  • This is conscious enmity toward an entire nation and its people;
  • This is a vivid example of the moral penury, the absence of conscience, and the wholesale depravity, fraud, and deceit, of the mainstream media today and of those working within it.
And so we pause. For a year or so, since September of 2006, I’ve followed Rich’s pieces on the Op Ed page in the Sunday Times. In Part Two of this piece — in Part Two of this literary essay — I’ll take up some of what I’ve found there over that time.
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Dwight Van Winkle said:

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I choose all, summed up in wholesale depravity, fraud, and deceit
The perfidy of these so-called liberals and progressives needs to be exposed, and you have done that with the eloquence and integrity of a true intellectual.
 
November 14, 2007
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