Blogger Glenn Greenwald on C-SPAN tomorrow
One of my favorite reads, Glenn Greenwald of Unclaimed Territory, is going to be on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal tomorrow morning, February 6.
He’s appearing from 7:45 to 8:30 a.m., before the start of the Senate hearings on the National Security Agency eavesdropping issues. Glenn will debate the Bush Administration supporter Professor Robert Turner of the University of Virginia.
The big news is that Glenn, a stellar representative of the blogosphere, was able to get access to staff members of Senators on the Judiciary Committee, and they listened to what he had to say. That said, it’s clear that the politicians need a lot of education about bloggers.
There is a substantial misperception about what the blogosphere is. Most people who don’t read blogs regularly (and that is still the case for the overwhelming majority of people, even in journalism and national politics) basically see the blogosphere as being one big online Rush Limbaugh Show — nothing but uninformed, ignorant, irresponsible, angry populist ranting by the dumb, dirty masses. The more exposure people have to blogs and bloggers, the more that perception will breakdown, because the reality, as people in the blogosphere know, is the opposite — the discussions, analysis and even reporting in the blogosphere is at a much higher and more substantive level than that which takes place in what they consider to be the “respectable media” venues.
In Glenn’s post, the real ominous sign about these hearings is how unprepared the Democrats are to fend off the talking points devised by the Rove/Cheney machine. Cheney has begun the spin that the exposure of Bush’s illegal wiretapping did ”enormous damage to our national security,” and thus any discussion of it means Dems are in bed with Al Qaeda.
The Dems, yet again, are making it loud and clear they have no stones; they are running scared. Why is this such a broken record? All these bums need to be tossed out.
Intimidating and threatening people who expose wrongdoing and illegality are the hallmarks of street gangs and military juntas. The idea that anything meaningful was disclosed when we learned that our Government is eavesdropping without judicial oversight and approval (rather than with it) has always been frivolous on its face. But the statement from Cheney that this disclosure caused ”enormous damage to our national security” is dishonest trash, transparently intended — on the eve of the NSA hearings — to stir up populist rage against anyone who blows the whistle on misconduct by the Administration and to intimidate other potential whistle-blowers with threats of criminal prosecution and treason accusations from the highest levels of our government.
Disturbingly, all of this has an effect, even — perhaps especially — on the Democrats in the Senate. They are not foaming at the mouth with anticipation for these hearings to be begin. They are approaching it with trepidation and concern about being depicted, yet again, as allies of Al Qaeda — not just by the boundlessly dishonest and propagandizing Administration, but also by our “neutral” press which fails to convey the actual issues raised by this scandal, and which continues to propagate the false debate that this is about whether we should be eavesdropping on Al Qaeda.
Damn, Glenn, you are spot-on, and it’s too bad that you are. Between the professional spinners, slanted and scared-of-the-loss-of-access press and queasy stomach Dems, it’s an uphill battle. May we both be wrong tomorrow.