WikiLeaks Exposes the Corporate Media's Deference to Power
The State Department documents that WikiLeaks is making public expose the desire of many mainstream journalists and commentators to stand up and be counted as the dutiful water-carriers for the prerogatives of United States foreign policy. Rather than focus on the substance of the diplomatic cables, American journalists tend to either frame the story as being about the "over-classification" of documents or the personal motivations and private life of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
"I'm not advocating that we bring out of retirement the KGB proxy who, on a London street, killed a Bulgarian dissident with a poisoned umbrella tip. But it would be nice if people like Assange were made to worry every time they go out in the rain."
. . . CHARLIE ROSE: Are you admiring of him?
RICK STENGEL: I think what he's doing is extremely destructive. It's
certainly lessening U.S. security in all kinds of ways. On the other hand,
he is a kind of revolutionary figure, and there are bound to be all kinds
of people who admire him, who see him as somebody who is trying to rectify
this inequality in the world.
of hard power but soft power to use that calculation. Soft power is
information. So he looks at the U.S. and says the U.S. is a hyper-power in
terms of the amount of information that America has from its diplomacy,
from its espionage, from its intelligence, from its human intelligence.
everything in terms of that kind of information. So he would say that he's
trying to equalize it.
cut off from any kind of authority over his own destiny. So he's somewhere
the system, the establishment?
is against centralized power. He's an anarchist in that sense.
-- I don't know what he would say in terms of what his ideology is. I
think he's an anarchist in the sense that he wants to bring down
institutions, bring down centralized power, bring down governments. I
don't know --
know, that would be for the attorney general to decide. But --
bring down the U.S. government?"
example, I said we talk a lot about American exceptionalism these days for
all kinds of reasons, and you seem to be an American exceptionalist in the
sense that you feel that the U.S. is exceptional for being the source of
all evil and damage in the world. Do you accept that?
was actually a source of good in the world. He talked about the
constitution. He talked about it coming out of the French Revolution. He
talked about federalism and the United States as being a great model for
governments around the world.
imperialism, information imperialism, and diplomatic global political
centralized power. She succeeded admirably. He would -- he believes that
centralized power disenfranchises people and that insofar as he can
undermine that power, he's helping people.
exceptionalist in the sense that he believes that the U.S. more than any
other country is a force for this disequilibrium in the world.
say. I mean look at what he's talked about in terms of what he's trying to
expose. He said he's trying to expose American hypocrisy, American lies,
American deception. That's what he would say the leaks are about. . . .
The above tête-à-tête reveals establishment thinking at its most unconscious and internalized.