Julian Assange: When is a journalist not a journalist?
WASHINGTON: Julian Assange is an activist not a journalist says Frida Ghitis, a former producer with CNN. There are others who have done so as well. The label police, of course, is made up of real journalists. (Julian Assange is an activist, not a journalist (Opinion) – CNN)
Suddenly the standards of journalism are written in historical legacy on a scale that matches Hippocrates’ standards for medicine. These arbiters of the canons of reporting apparently are blessed with special knowledge of those who may wear the badge of “Journalists.”
Julian Assange cannot be allowed to be a journalist if the forces opposing him are victorious in their righteousness.
Webster defines journalism as:
- A person who is engaged in journalism
- Any writer who aims at a mass audience.
- A person who keeps a journal.
Apparently, the label police don’t accept a degree in journalism as acceptance into the fourth estate. After all, the media grandiose like Chris Cuomo9 (CNN) who was a disgruntled lawyer before using his connections to enter media.
Mika Brezinski earned her BA in English (1989) from the Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts in 1989. Due to her connections via her Zbigniew Brzezinski. Brzezinski was a foreign policy expert and served as the National Security Advisor to President Jimmy Carter as well as Democratic presidents including Lyndon B. Johnson and John F. Kennedy.
What about Joe Scarborough? Joe is a graduate of the University of Alabama and the University of Florida School of Law. Like his wife, Mika, there are no journalism credentials in his MSNBC bio. However, according to Time Magazine and Vanity Fair magazine, Scarborough is among the most influential media personalities.
Charles Krauthammer – the greatest political mind of the 20th – 21st century
Charles Krauthammer (b-3.13.50 d-6.21.18) was an American political columnist. He had degrees in medicine, but none in journalism. However, in 1987 Krauthammer won the Pulitzer Prize for his “witty and insightful columns on national issues for his column in The Washington Post. A column that was syndicated to more than 400 publications worldwide.
Krauthammer was a panelist on the PBS news program Inside Washington from 1990 until 2013. He was also a contributing editor to The Weekly Standard, a Fox News Channel contributor, and a nightly panelist on Fox News Channel’s Special Report with Bret Baier.
Krauthammer received acclaim for his writing on foreign policy, among other matters.
So, what is the rule of who is a Journalist?
Was Charles Krauthammer a journalist.? Or something else? Do the same rules that apply to Krauthammer apply to Assange, or me?
The Supreme Court, the nine gods of truth and justice, has never “ruled” on who the press is as the First Amendment defines them?
And if those guys and gals can’t “interpret” the First Amendment then nobody can.
“There are laws to protect the freedom of the press’s speech, but none that are worth anything to protect the people from the press.” – Mark Twain
But Assange has been deemed, de facto, a non-journalist by the likes of Brian Kilmeade and Jason Chaffetz (Saturday morning on Fox and Friends) because of some alleged nefarious activities. Is that fair?
They are, of course, journalists because Fox News says they are.
Which begs the question: Is Tucker Carlson a journalist? While he has no journalism degree, he recognizes that Assange has acted as a reporter in journalistic fashion according to the Supreme Court and The Pentagon Papers decision.
So is Tucker just another activist like Assange? An opinion moderator like Sean Hannity? Or Rachel Maddow?
Or is he an entertainment talk show host, ala late night talk show host comedians Steve Colbert or Jimmy Kimmel who continuously bash the President under the guise of providing important news to their viewers?
Are they given journalistic protections under the first amendment?
What crime Assange?
But Assange, who exposed Hillary Clinton’s emails and her potential crimes (felonies), did not steal nor hack. There is no evidence yet that he received the information about her in any unlawful manner. But what he has done has angered her and her many “friends.”
So, the Democrats strike back. Right?
“The media is the most powerful entity on Earth. It has the power to make the innocent guilty and the guilty innocent, and that’s power, because they control the mind of the masses.” -Malcolm X
Well, yes, but, so do the Republicans. Ben Sasse and Tom Cotton have taken up the fight as well. Two United States Senators from middle America have joined Hillary Clinton’s ranks in a fight to protect the Washington power structure.
Assange will be an example to future would-be-journalists. And you can bet Sasse and Cotton are only the tip of the Republican iceberg. Nothing is more important to both camps of party hacks than their power.
And it seems apparent that many at Fox News have joined with their colleagues at CNN and MSNBC in the fight.
Where the political battle for America lies
The political battles today are not between Republicans and Democrats; nor between Right or Left. The battles are between small governments of a local nature and a monster power structure that wants to consolidate those local (sheep) governments into their control and a single bureaucratic government.
That power structure is in Washington, D.C. Once a beautiful local Southern city on the Potomac, now the headquarters for political party animals right out of Animal Farm, with the media a single conglomerate “Squealer,” Orwell’s Minister of Propaganda.
If journalism standards have reached the qualifying level of Hippocrates’ for medicine. Its first rule might fittingly be: “Do Harm.”