It's Acts of Journalism that Matter Not People Called "Journalists"

Tyler Durden's picture


Submitted by Michael Krieger of Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

It is the job of the Fourth Estate to act as a check and a restraint on the others, to illumine the dark corners of Ministries, to debunk the bureaucrat, to throw often unwelcome light on the measures and motives of our rulers. ‘News’, as Hearst once remarked, ‘is something which somebody wants suppressed: all the rest is advertising’. That job is an essential one and it is bound to be unpopular; indeed, in a democracy, it may be argued that the more unpopular the newspapers are with the politicians the better they are performing their most vital task.

- Brian R. Roberts from a October 29, 1955 article in the London periodical “Time & Tide”

Who is a journalist is a question we need to ask ourselves. Is any blogger out there saying anything—do they deserve First Amendment protection? These are the issues of our times.

- U.S. Senator Lindsay Graham

I am extraordinarily bothered by the manner in which the oligarch gatekeepers in the mainstream media and elsewhere are attempting to discredit Glenn Greenwald by saying he is “not a journalist.” While the powers that be are extremely unenlightened and unwise by their nature, they are masters at the art of deception and maintaining their positions of power and status. Thus, whenever they are dealt a crushing blow, they will regroup and fight back in subtle, manipulative and clever ways.  It appears their primary strategy in fighting back against truth-tellers, whistleblowers and journalists in the wake of Edward Snowden’s revelations is by attempting to control the definition of the term “journalist.”  This way they can then proclaim who is a “real journalist” and who isn’t.  Of course, those crowned “real journalists” by the government and mainstream media will be well known statist lapdogs who would never publish anything embarrassing to their masters in power. Those who are not crowned “journalists” by the state will be hunted down to the ends of the earth like Julian Assange and Wikileaks.  We must nip this meme in the bud before it starts to spread and gain acceptance, because not only is it a total fraud, but it also represents a serious threat to the First Amendment.

When fascist Senator Lindsay Graham stated the quote at the top it sparked a well deserved firestorm.  Of all the commentary on it, I found the most powerful to be the following written by Mike Masnick at Techdirt.  He wrote:

As we’ve pointed out, there’s a simple way to solve that problem: just make the shield law cover acts of journalism rather than target journalists. Many people may not be journalists by profession, but still, at times, perform journalism. And it’s not that difficult to figure out which is which. Otherwise, you’re carving out a special class of people in an arena in which people doing the exact same thing would face different rules.


And the problems of trying to carve out “journalists” instead of acts of “journalism” become pretty clear, pretty quickly. The last time the shield law concept was being debated, Senators Chuck Schumer and Dianne Feinstein tried to add a carve out that made it clear that Wikileaks should not be protected by the law. And that should scare people. Because when the government can magically decide that this kind of journalism is protected, while that kind of journalism which embarrasses the government is not protected, then you no longer have freedom of the press. At all.

Those two paragraphs right there describe perfectly the manner in which we must protect freedom of speech and the press in these United States.  We must see the power structure’s propaganda early on and counter it with truth.  There is absolutely no need to define who is a “journalist” and who isn’t.  What must be protected and defended at all costs are “acts of journalism” not a class of people defined as “journalists.” If we merely do the latter, then we are falling onto a very slippery slope toward creating certain privileges for people that fall into a certain category rather than defending the act itself, which of course is the most important thing to protect.


As most of you know, David Gregory is at the center of the current irrelevant debate over who is a journalist and who isn’t.  Not only did he question whether Greenwald should be charged with a crime on Meet the Press, but he also had this to say:

GREGORY: Well, the question of who’s a journalist may be up to a debate with regards to what you’re doing. And of course anybody who’s watching this understands I was asking a question; that question has been raised by lawmakers, as well. I’m not embracing anything. But obviously, I take your point.

One of Gregory’s main points and the point being made by much of the establishment media is that to be called a journalist you must be neutral.  Interesting, because clearly David Gregory is the furtherest thing in the world from “neutral.”  He is a lapdog to the establishment and a gatekeeper for the powerful.  As Ben Cohen writes in The Daily Banter:

Gregory has been a journalist for over 20 years, and a major public figure for at least 10 of them. Gregory has never been involved in taking down a powerful figure or putting his career at risk to reveal information to the public. Just take a look at Gregory’s Wikipedia page. His career is one long tribute to corporate and political power – a perfect resume in the eyes of Washington’s elite. He covers presidential elections, gets exclusives with prominent politicians, is married to a federal prosecutor and sends his children to the same school as the Obamas. Gregory is so popular with the establishment that George W. Bush threw a birthday party for him during the 2000 election campaign.

Furthermore, if Gregory interviewed Obama on his show do you think he would ask: “So since all you’ve done since you took office has been lie to the citizenry and destroy the Constitution, should you be impeached?”  No, of course he wouldn’t.  So does that mean Gregory is not a “journalist?”  Who cares, the whole debate is a red herring.

Journalists should be protected, but not because of who they are or the title next to their name, but because they are engaged in acts of journalism. At the end of the day journalism is much like porn, hard to define but “you know it when you see it.” Whether you want to call Glenn Greenwald a journalist or not, what he did in the Edward Snowden affair was clearly an “act of journalism” and therefore must be protected and defended at all costs.

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Tue, 06/25/2013 - 22:26 | 3693227 LetThemEatRand
LetThemEatRand's picture

Larry, Moe, Curly and Greg.

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 22:34 | 3693262 kliguy38
kliguy38's picture

David Gregory is a total DOUCHE BAG.......jounalist???  BWAAAAAAAAA

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 22:35 | 3693265 LetThemEatRand
LetThemEatRand's picture

Not that there was a question, but if anyone was curious whether major corporate owned media is in bed with major corporate owned America.....

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 22:56 | 3693344 SafelyGraze
SafelyGraze's picture

it's simple: 

if you haven't been certified by the Society of Journalism (Bar Association) (Medical Board) and issued a Licence to practice Journalisticity, you can't report on current or recent events.


Tue, 06/25/2013 - 22:59 | 3693355 Stackers
Stackers's picture

Wasnt David Gregory the same douch bag that broke the law by bringing a 30 round magazine into the city limits of Washington DC to use as a prop on his propaganda show ?

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:04 | 3693376 Skateboarder
Skateboarder's picture

Why report anything relevant when we can talk about abortion, religion, and immigration over and over and over again for the next jillion years. Wheeeeeee.

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:28 | 3693461 SafelyGraze
SafelyGraze's picture

that was a racist and homophobic thing to say, mister skateboarder

if that is your real name


Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:31 | 3693474 markmotive
markmotive's picture

Many still wouldn't give Snowden an inch for releasing the NSA info.

We are all obedient sheep. Baaaad Snowden, baaaad!

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:34 | 3693480 markmotive
markmotive's picture

“Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed: everything else is public relations.” -- George Orwell

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:40 | 3693498 highwaytoserfdom
highwaytoserfdom's picture

Homage  to Catalonia   moment   guess Fascist winning again.   

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 00:16 | 3693524 sunaJ
sunaJ's picture

The great thing about paying attention to all of these shenanigans is that where you may have had respect for someone like David Gregory a few years ago (which I did), he becomes so obviously exposed as a complete shill for military-corpora'merika.(tm)  I can't help that I see it and all I can hope for is that there are many others like me that percieve this hypnotic ideolgy that is causing our downfall.  Perhaps they percieve it later than me, because god knows that many have seen it before me.

Truth to power.  Gregory's silk robes exist only in the mind.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 00:17 | 3693590 BLOTTO
BLOTTO's picture

Real journalism is dead.


The question is - did it ever really exist?

I would say only the underground - subterrain journalism...where the rabbits go and dig and fall into.


'They' own the MSM - no need to explain that it is a massive tool/weapon.

'The Medium is the Message'~MM

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 00:30 | 3693600 Taku
Taku's picture

Seems like some kids in HK made a quick short-movie on Snowden events there.

Some bad acting/production, but oddly entertaining.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 03:35 | 3693783 James_Cole
James_Cole's picture


Who is a journalist is a question we need to ask ourselves. Is any blogger out there saying anything—do they deserve First Amendment protection? These are the issues of our times.

- U.S. Senator Lindsay Graham

Graham accidentally telling the truth. Congress now believes the first Amendment is 'up for debate' and is an 'issues of our times' AKA the first amendment is an issue now because it's finally found a venue to be voiced in the public square.

US gov has always loved talking about how much they support freedom - as long as you never actually try to use it.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 05:43 | 3693828 Manthong
Manthong's picture

It’s just a darn good thing that we can trust the government not to be keeping any kind of intractable, unimpeachable, official journal on journalists.

1st Amendment, 2nd Amendment, 4th Amendment..  what does any of that really matter in the new normal of the political economy, human action and  relations?

Just ask Nancy or Hillary.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 06:32 | 3693926 Manthong
Manthong's picture

 "since all you’ve done since you took office has been lie to the citizenry and destroy the Constitution, should you be impeached?"

usurpers are not to be impeached.. they are to be arrested.


Wed, 06/26/2013 - 06:39 | 3693939 eatapeach
eatapeach's picture

Why do the people of SC elect this fascist dandy?

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 08:16 | 3694088 ATM
ATM's picture

No shit. Fuckers like him and McCain are the most dangerous in Congress. With blantant communists like Obama, Pelosi, Holder, Reid, Shumer Brazill, and the lefties we at least know what they are. The Grahams and McCains are the real dangers. Communists cloaked in Conservatism. They are the Trojan Horses. 

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 08:51 | 3694211 flapdoodle
flapdoodle's picture

By using the word "Communist" you give away that you are still following the old Cold War brainwashing - John McCain, Obama, Schumer,Gore,Graham,Reid,Rubio are all in the same club and chasing after the same goal - its all about power and control, not some synthetic "left-right or red-blue" continuum.

The tragedy of the United States is that it has become a fascist dictatorship just as soon as it acquired the technical means to achieve it - so much for the US Constitution...

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 02:06 | 3693723 xtop23
xtop23's picture

True journalism does exist, but primarily only on the internet.

If you are one of the few with the motivation, intelligence, and patience required to properly use such a resource, the benefits are endless but also come at a price (stress / frustration / shock / etc).

The intentional reduction of the general populace in their ability to reason, focus, exercise patience, and translate interest into action, really is a quite extraordinary and massive undertaking. 

You have got to hand it to TPTB. They've been far more successful than I would have thought humanly possible.

Now for the first time in history, instantaneous exchange of ideas and rapid collaborative analysis is possible, at a point in time where world events are coming to a head and the itch to question is regaining survival value.

The ability to form your own conclusions (assuming you're capable of such a thing) from ALL of the available data, instead of simply being spoon fed a single pre-packaged narrative, is of incalcuable worth.

If we can keep it.

That is what they fear and why internet freedom must be destroyed. 

Thanks for the article, Tyler.


edit; Pontificate much, xtop?

Ignore me, it's the Primativo talking.







Wed, 06/26/2013 - 08:15 | 3694086 fallout11
fallout11's picture

That is why TPTB want to control the internet, and silence the bloggers. ZH itself has been previously cited as "baaaaaaaaaaad!" <sheep> by their drones.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 08:35 | 3694142 Chupacabra-322
Chupacabra-322's picture

The fact is that every single media host is nothing but JUDAS GOATS, they get their 30 pieces of silver each week and have convinced themselves that it is okay because if they do not do it someone else will, so why not them.

But of course that is what prostitutes and pimps say to justify what they do as well but at the end of the day they are ALL still pimps and whores, and that includes the media.

Being part of the mainstream media brothels is nothing to be proud of but actually everything to be ASHAMED of. If their friends and family had any honor and dignity themselves they would disown them until they stopped selling their souls for money.

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:37 | 3693490 Skateboarder
Skateboarder's picture

I was commenting on the death of journalism. Skateboarder is race/religion/sexuality-agnostic and only asks that people follow natural law. And natural law asks for clean journalism. Here in the 21st fucking century, with all these goodies and spoiled like brats, Western civilization still has the audacity to argue about taking away chunks of the the most fundamental things pertaining to individual freedom.

Fuck man.

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:39 | 3693494 SafelyGraze
SafelyGraze's picture

just tugging your chain

no offense intended

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 00:06 | 3693568 Skateboarder
Skateboarder's picture

Hehe, I knows, but I still gotta lay down the word.

Imagine a gay president.

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:30 | 3693471 azzhatter
azzhatter's picture

I wouldn't urinate on Gregory if he was on fire unless I could piss gasoline

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 00:41 | 3693650 glenlloyd
glenlloyd's picture

nicely said...he's a joke.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 01:17 | 3693689 crazyjsmith
crazyjsmith's picture

Good boy Gregory, good boy.  Now sit, here's a treat!  Such a good boy.  


Can almost see his strings, David Gregory, what a fraud

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 06:26 | 3693914 malikai
malikai's picture

If you could piss gasoline Exxon would buy your dick for a hundred million bucks.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 08:28 | 3694117 General Decline
General Decline's picture

Most likely they would cut it off and lock it up in a highly secured warehouse never to be seen again.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 08:04 | 3694070 richard in norway
richard in norway's picture

You would need to watch out for blow back!!

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:30 | 3693470 DeadFred
DeadFred's picture

In order to get that certification one must either sell ones soul to the establishment or to the devil. The question of whether there is a difference between the two may be up to a debate with regards to what they’re doing.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 08:18 | 3694092 ATM
ATM's picture

There is no difference. Never has been.

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:01 | 3693369 macholatte
macholatte's picture


This is how it began:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.


This is where it went:


Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.


This is how it was to be enforced:


Amendment II

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.




Tue, 06/25/2013 - 22:45 | 3693296 otto skorzeny
otto skorzeny's picture

Gregory is another Zionist who achieved his exalted status because he is a card carrying Tribesman.

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 22:55 | 3693340 LetThemEatRand
LetThemEatRand's picture

Plenty of non-Zionists came out in favor of the "spy on everyone because everyone is a suspect" liturgy.  Get over your fucking prejudice and hatred and focus your mind on something useful.

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:01 | 3693367 otto skorzeny
otto skorzeny's picture

don't lecture me you knee-jerk cunt.

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:02 | 3693374 LetThemEatRand
LetThemEatRand's picture

Don't say stupid shit and I won't lecture you.

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:18 | 3693417 The Thunder Child
The Thunder Child's picture

Fact is stupid, truth is anti-semetic we all know this

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 23:32 | 3693476 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

Giving LTER a green, my how did it come to this!

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 06:26 | 3693912 Henry Hub
Henry Hub's picture

Greenwald in one his responses to the interview made the perfect description of Gregory: He is a "Press Courtesan".

The distinction we needed to make is between Journalists and Courtesans.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 08:58 | 3694227 flapdoodle
flapdoodle's picture

Gregory a high-class presstitute? More like a press trollop, although "press strumpet" sounds cooler...

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 12:38 | 3695429 FreeSlave
FreeSlave's picture

David Gregory is a Jew (from wikipedia: Although his mother was not Jewish, he was raised in his father's Jewish religion and is a practicing Jew today). 

What is wrong with the jews? It looks like almost all of them want to make thigs worse in the US.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 12:30 | 3695430 FreeSlave
FreeSlave's picture


Tue, 06/25/2013 - 22:37 | 3693269 ACP
ACP's picture

God damn right. Excellent article.

Freedom of Speech is not Freedom of Approved Speech.

Tue, 06/25/2013 - 22:42 | 3693290 booboo
booboo's picture

Ahh, you are correct but the real reason for this fake hand wringing by the approved press is to push for a new government czar that will need to stamp your press credentials. Watch and learn.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 02:48 | 3693763 Rip van Wrinkle
Rip van Wrinkle's picture

It is now. Where have you been the last decade? And what did you think Bush meant when he said 'if you're not with us, you're against us?



Wed, 06/26/2013 - 07:57 | 3694059 highwaytoserfdom
highwaytoserfdom's picture

Dont forget Ron Brown. Clinton. Reno. Holder Albright. Oh yea papa Cia Bush and  Kuwait oh lets not forget McCains papa and Gulf of tonkin..    Need we go back further?  We learn nothing...

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 03:31 | 3693784 reload
reload's picture

A friend of mine who was until recently a senior Journalist at The Guardian resigned when it was announced that they would be doing away with the job tittle `journalist` and instead moving to `content provider`

He said it was without doubt another step along the road to an imminent time when they just re phrase publicity hand outs from .gov / corporation media depts / approved lobby groups and the Police etc.

With that backdrop I have been amazed what GG has managed to publish these last few weeks, which has made me a bit suspicious about the ES story - much as I wish him well and want to believe he is the real deal.

Wed, 06/26/2013 - 01:00 | 3693327 prains
prains's picture

a really smart dude once said;

"control the medium, you control the message"


this was a relatively long time ago in comparison to the problems to date, but nobody listened, least of all americans but it's funny just like climate change

you will drink it

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