Petition the Complicit Media

CBS took two weeks to fire Don Imus for his “nappy headed hos” comment, but it only took them two days to fire respected retired Major General John Batiste for speaking out against Bush and the war.

Batiste, a Republican, commanded troops in Iraq in 2004 and 2005. He left the Army so that he could speak out against the president’s reckless policy in Iraq, and CBS hired him as a part-time consultant to comment about it.

Last week, he appeared in a VoteVets.org TV ad speaking out against the president on Iraq. (Watch the ad here on Youtube.)

Just two days later, CBS fired him, claiming that it was because he engaged in advocacy. However, they’ve got other consultants engaged in advocacy — yet all for pro-Bush or pro-Republican causes. CBS is sending a message that you can’t be a consultant to their network if you’re critical of President Bush and the Iraq war. That’s political censorship — nothing more.

Sign a petition here, and tell CBS that this double-standard is not acceptable.

11 Replies to “Petition the Complicit Media”

  1. I got that email from MoveOn.org, too. I’m of two minds about it. Yes, I agree that the double standard is unacceptable and if that was all the petition said, I would sign it without hesitation.

    But what the petition is asking for is for CBS to re-hire Batiste. And I don’t know exactly how I feel about that. MoveOn.org complains that Nicolle Wallace shouldn’t be allowed to “push White House talking points”, but cries “unfair! unfair!” at Batiste’s elimination. If you’re going to ask for free speech, that needs to cover everyone.

    I would sign a petition that demanded CBS cease censorship based on political bias. But I can’t sign Moveon’s petition as it currently stands. I don’t like it when organizations I want to support use the same tactics as the other side and fail to see (or acknowledge) the hypocrisy.

  2. The call to re-hire is based entirely on the fact that Wallace et. al. are permitted to continue. They’re asking for a level standard. I don’t have a problem with that. I’m not seeing any calls from MoveOn to ask CBS to fire Wallace.

    Part of the reason why liberals and progressives always end up being drowned under the conservative wave is because the average conservative doesn’t second-guess and over-think situations like this. They get behind and push, and things get done.

    Sadly, “using the tactics of the other side” is neccessary. When one side shows up behaving as if they’re fighting a war, and the other side behaves as if it’s a reasoned debate…..guess what happens?

  3. I’ve been increasingly suprised by MoveOn, with regards to the phrasing of their emails and petitions. I read through this notification, was upset, horrified, angry, and then in the end didn’t sign the petition, either.

    I did think that in this case, it seemed like they were saying “Wallace does this for one side, Batiste does this for the other, and only Batiste was fired – that’s wrong!” Not necessarily, “Batiste should get to say what he wants, but Wallace shouldn’t.”

    My problem with their email petitions in general is that they seem extremely reactionary and just as black-and-white as any neocon talking point. I understand the need for some far-left reactionaries, but I percieve this is a newer development for them (meaning, in the last year or so). If I’d had this impression of them in the first place, I wouldn’t be on their list.

  4. The problem with that senario is that then we have a new regime that turns out to be just as blind and reactionary and oppressive as the ousted one.

    A long war, with reason and integrity maintained, is better for as complex a society as ours than a coup in which no compromise is desired or possible.

  5. Also, the “culture war” is fought by the fifteen percent of the population on either far side of the debate. The majority of Americans are in the middle. Poll after poll will back this up (specifically I’ve done the research regarding gay marriage and abortion as major examples of culture war pivot points). When one side fights the other side with vitriol and harsh rhetoric, only their own compatriots are listening. The middle percentage doesn’t agree with either argument made by either side.

    I know that when I read a forward from some conservative relatives lambasting Barack Obama for being a muslim spy who’s going to destroy our republic from within, I don’t do anything but laugh. The same goes for MoveOn and people who don’t already agree with them. To convince the populace at large, we can’t rely on reactive, inflammatory rhetoric and demands.

  6. The majority of Americans are in the middle.

    The majority of Americans don’t give a shit about anything, as long as they can have gas under $4 bucks a gallon, and American Idol on the tube. That’s hardly a recommendation.

    Liberals have been arguing that they should “take the high road” for the past 30 years. We can all see what our high-minded principles have brought us. We’ve been considering, and thinking, and equivocating….and the far right has been deciding and acting. It *has* been a war, and we haven’t bothered to even show up.

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