Friday, April 07, 2006


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We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. When the loyal opposition dies, I think the soul of America dies with it. EDWARD R. MURROW

We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason if we dig deep in our history and doctrine and remember that we are not descended from fearful men, not from men who feared to write, to speak, to associate and to defend causes which were for the moment unpopular. We can deny our heritage and our history, but we cannot escape responsibility for the result. There is no way for a citizen of the Republic to abdicate his responsibility"


A great many people think they are thinking when they are really rearranging their prejudices.

Everyone is a prisoner of his own experiences. No one can eliminate prejudices - just recognize them

Most truths are so naked that people feel sorry for them and cover them up, at least a little bit.
Edward R. Murrow

No one can terrorize a whole nation, unless we are all his accomplices.
Edward R. Murrow

Our major obligation is not to mistake slogans for solutions.

When the politicians complain that TV turns the proceedings into a circus, it should be made clear that the circus was already there, and that TV has merely demonstrated that not all the performers are well trained.

The speed of communications is wondrous to behold. It is also true that speed can multiply the distribution of information that we know to be untrue.

To be persuasive we must be believable; to be believable we must be credible; credible we must be truthful.

We cannot defend freedom abroad by deserting it at home.

We cannot make good news out of bad practice.
Edward R. Murrow

Edward R. Murrow was a journalist who had integrity & the courage to fight for the democratic beliefs many leaders espouse but do not practice. Such men are rare in our society of self-interest , apathy & greed. Few journalist today are willing to take on those in Power even though it should be their duty to do so.
Here are some things I gleaned from the net on Edward R. Murrow.

EDWARD R. MURROW ( 1908- 1965)
U.S. Broadcast Journalist

Edward R. Murrow is the most distinguished and renowned figure in the history of American broadcast journalism. He was a seminal force in the creation and development of electronic news gathering as both a craft and a profession. Murrow's career began at CBS in 1935 and spanned the infancy of news and public affairs programming on radio through the ascendancy of television in the 1950s, as it eventually became the nation's most popular news medium. In 1961, Murrow left CBS to become director of the United States Information Agency for the new Kennedy administration. By that time, his peers were already referring to a "Murrow legend and tradition" of courage, integrity, social responsibility, and journalistic excellence, emblematic of the highest ideals of both broadcast news and the television industry in general.

David Halberstam once observed in The Powers That Be that Murrow was "one of those rare legendary figures who was as good as his myth." Murrow was apparently driven by the democratic precepts of modern liberalism and the more embracing Weltanschauung of the American Protestant tradition. In Alexander Kendrick's Prime-Time: The Life of Edward R. Murrow, for example, Murrow's brother, Dewey, described the intense religious and moral tutelage of his mother and father: "they branded us with their own consciences." Murrow's imagination and the long-term effects of his early home life impelled him to integrate his parents' ethical guidelines into his own personality to such an extensive degree that Edward R. Murrow became the virtual fulfillment of his industry's public service aspirations.

Ed Murrow's rich, full, and expressive voice first came to the attention of America's listening public in his many rooftop radio broadcasts during the Battle of Britain in 1939. In words evocative of America's original founding fathers, Murrow frequently used the airwaves to revivify and popularize many democratic ideals such as free speech, citizen participation, the pursuit of truth, and the sanctification of individual liberties and rights, that resulted from a broader liberal discourse in England, France, and the United States. Resurrecting these values and virtues for a mass audience of true believers during the London Blitz was high drama--the opposing threat of totalitarianism, made real by Nazi bombs, was ever present in the background. Ed Murrow's persona was thus established, embodying the political traditions of the Western democracies, and offering the public a heroic model on which to focus their energies.

Murrow's most-celebrated piece was his 9 March 1954 telecast, in which he engaged Senator Joseph R. McCarthy in a program "told mainly in [McCarthy's] own words and pictures." In the aftermath of this episode, the descriptions of Edward R. Murrow and his tradition quickly began to transcend the more secular cast that appeared in response to his championing of democratic action and principles in Britain during World War II. In his review of the now legendary McCarthy program, for instance, New York Times' TV critic Jack Gould reflected an ongoing canonization process when he wrote that "last week may be remembered as the week that broadcasting recaptured its soul."

for a short history of the Television Documentary see:
-Tom Mascaro
And here is a bit about Mccarthyism often depicted as a dark period in American History though Neo-Cons more often than not see it as a Golden Age like those Rockwell paintings the kids at a swimming hole a kid carrying a fishing rod though of course they want to turn the clock back to before Roosevelt’s New Deal of the 1930s. To a time when corporations weren’t regulated to the degree that they are today.


Throughout the 1940s and 1950s America was overwhelmed with concerns about the threat of communism growing in Eastern Europe and China. Capitalizing on those concerns, a young Senator named Joseph McCarthy made a public accusation that more than two hundred "card-carrying" communists had infiltrated the United States government. Though eventually his accusations were proven to be untrue, and he was censured by the Senate for unbecoming conduct, his zealous campaigning ushered in one of the most repressive times in 20th-century American politics.

While the House Un-American Activities Committee had been formed in 1938 as an anti-Communist organ, McCarthy’s accusations heightened the political tensions of the times. Known as McCarthyism, the paranoid hunt for infiltrators was notoriously difficult on writers and entertainers, many of whom were labeled communist sympathizers and were unable to continue working. Some had their passports taken away, while others were jailed for refusing to give the names of other communists. The trials, which were well publicized, could often destroy a career with a single unsubstantiated accusation. Among those well-known artists accused of communist sympathies or called before the committee were Dashiell Hammett, Waldo Salt, Lillian Hellman, Lena Horne, Paul Robeson, Arthur Miller, Aaron Copland, Leonard Bernstein, Charlie Chaplin and Group Theatre members Clifford Odets, Elia Kazan, and Stella Adler. In all, three hundred and twenty artists were blacklisted, and for many of them this meant the end of exceptional and promising careers.

During this time there were few in the press willing to stand up against McCarthy and the anti-Communist machine. Among those few were comedian Mort Sahl, and journalist Edward R. Murrow, whose strong criticisms of McCarthy are often cited as playing an important role in his eventual removal from power. By 1954, the fervor had died down and many actors and writers were able to return to work. Though relatively short, these proceedings remain one of the most shameful moments in modern U.S. history.

Also see:
Edward R. Murrow and the Time of His Time
By Joseph Wershba
Veteran journalist Joseph Wershba joined CBS News in 1944 serving as writer, editor and correspondent. He was a producer of the renowned "60 Minutes" from 1968-1988.

The Center for Public Integrity
Ongoing investigative research and reports on public policy issues in the US and the world. Searchable databases include the Media Tracker which shows who ... -

ON Mccarthyism see:
This witch-hunt and anti-communist hysteria became known as McCarthyism

So anyway that brings me to where my discussion begins with the idea of Journalistic Integrity which I shall continue in my next post. One wonders if almost anyone in the profession of journalism , at the present time, can have integrity since they appear to be too close & chummy with those in power. They appear to be too easily manipulated by those in power. This applied more to the United States than to Canada but it seems our journalist are trying very hard to catch up. This will be interesting to watch with Prime Minister Harper appearing to mimic George Bush’s style & possibly his militarism & expansionist agenda .


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