About being a good journalist

Part of Journalist Tools

Sorry.. this is quickly written up just so that you’d have something to read regarding this – Charles

There was a report that came out in the UK recently called the Chilcot Report that showed how the UK government completely failed when it decided to go to war with IRAQ. Of course this failure was not just in the UK.. it was originally the United States that started it all… and part of that failure was the media.. in a BIG WAY.

You have to understand the consequences of this failure. Millions of people have died as a result of us going to war with Iraq… the amount of terrorists and terrorist acts in the world has increased because of that decision.. the wars in Afghanistan and Syria, etc.. are all related to that decision.. so allowing the government to make decisions like that without being critical is a complete failure of our media.

On top of that, the estimates are that $6 TRILLION of our own money will be spent on the resulting wars! Enough money to provide Free Higher Education for everyone in the United States for the next 20 years or Free Healthcare for everyone for the next 20 years or free rent for everyone who rents for the next 20 years! The amount of money wasted and the number of people killed as a result are staggering!

Look at this recent tweet:

And look at the comments by the journalists in that tweet!

The point is, when the failure is happening, that is the time that we don’t noticed it happening. It’s only AFTER THE FACT that we notice it.

During the time that it is happening, all “common sense” points in the direction everyone is going.  Leading up to the Iraq war, these very smart journalists all took what the government was telling them to be fact and the American people went along with it as well.

The government tried to pull the same tactic when Edward Snowden came out with information on how our government was unconstitutionally spying on us all, and even to this day, many people still look at Snowden as a traitor.

I used to work in the financial world, I worked at Lehman Brothers (a company you may have heard of) long before it almost took the world economy down with it, so I have a unique understanding of how money works and how financial institutions are speculating ridiculously and are causing much of the economic pain and suffering we are all experiencing today. They caused the economic crisis in 2008 and the EU is suffering the most as a consequence of that crisis.

That understanding allows me to look at a large institution like the EU and to see the economic pain it is causing all its member states through admittedly failed economic policies that are destroying the very countries that are members of it. Their failed policies are causing unemployment to be as high as 50-75% for young people in the southern countries of Europe. It’s not the countries that are causing the unemployment, it’s the economic policies of the EU that are causing it.

It also allows me to see the propaganda the EU is spreading (the utopian idea of “one world”, let’s all live in harmony but if you are anti EU, you must be racist, anti-immigration, etc..)

You guys and girls are young, you have an optimistic view of the world, you want to believe that entities like that EU, or the US government, are there to protect us and to provide for us, and so on and so on.  And yes.. I am optimistic as well, I do believe that we CAN have that utopian world someday… BUT, I know that it is our job as journalists (if that’s what some of us want to become) to make sure that we are doing our job to make sure that that future will happen for us!

And that means, looking for those moments when everyone is reporting a certain way about something, when all common sense points one way, but having a gut feeling that, maybe I’m missing something here. Am I being misled by the powers that be? Is this one of those moments when we’ll all look back and say.. WHY DIDN’T WE QUESTION what was being reported?

Think Syria – is the leader of Syria really bombing his own country and his own people? Or is something else going on where certain countries are trying to cause another regime change within Syria?

Think Ukraine – did Russia really invade the country and force one half to succeed from the other? Or did another country or group of countries start the whole thing that caused Russia to step in to protect itself?

Think the 2016 US Election – is Russia really hacking our computers to try to get Trump elected?

Again.. remember.. these moments are NOT OBVIOUS when they are happening, so you have to be extra vigilant in trying to detect them. And it takes guts to act on those instincts, but those journalists that do act are the ones that go down in history as being amazing journalists.

– Charles