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Old 12-22-2003, 05:55 PM   #1 (permalink)
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The P.U. Litzer Prizes

Two Prize list for 2003
1. Announcing the P.U.-Litzer Prizes for 2003
2. Best of the Buried Stories


By Norman Solomon / Creators Syndicate

The P.U.-litzer Prizes were established more than a decade ago to give
recognition to the stinkiest media performances of the year.

As usual, I have conferred with Jeff Cohen, founder of the media watch
group FAIR, to sift through the large volume of entries. In view of the
many deserving competitors, we regret that only a few can win a

And now, the twelfth annual P.U.-litzer Prizes, for the foulest media
performances of 2003:

MEDIA MOGUL OF THE YEAR -- Lowry Mays, CEO of Clear Channel

While some broadcasters care about their programming, the CEO of
America's biggest radio company (with more than 1,200 stations) admits
he cares only about the ads. The Clear Channel boss told Fortune
magazine in March: "If anyone said we were in the radio business, it
wouldn't be someone from our company. We're not in the business of
providing news and information. We're not in the business of providing
well-researched music. We're simply in the business of selling our
customers products."


Interviewing a military analyst as U.S. jet bombers headed to Baghdad on
the first day of the Iraq war, NBC anchor Brokaw declared: "Admiral
McGinn, one of the things that we don't want to do is to destroy the
infrastructure of Iraq, because in a few days we're going to own that


According to a University of Maryland study, most Americans who get
their news from commercial TV harbored at least one of three
"misperceptions" about the Iraq war: that weapons of mass destruction
had been discovered in Iraq, that evidence closely linking Iraq to Al
Qaeda had been found, or that world opinion approved of the U.S.
invasion. Fox News viewers were the most confused about key facts, with
80 percent embracing at least one of those misperceptions. The study
found a correlation between being misinformed and being supportive of
the war.


A month after the invasion of Iraq began, CNN executive Eason Jordan
admitted on his network's "Reliable Sources" show (April 20) that CNN
had allowed U.S. military officials to help screen its on-air analysts:
"I went to the Pentagon myself several times before the war started and
met with important people there and said, for instance -- 'At CNN, here
are the generals we're thinking of retaining to advise us on the air and
off about the war' -- and we got a big thumbs-up on all of them. That
was important."


Over the years, ABC correspondent John Stossel became known for
one-sided, often-inaccurate reporting on behalf of his pro-corporate,
"greed is good" ideology. He boasted that his on-air job was to "explain
the beauties of the free market," received lecture fees from corporate
pressure groups, and even spoke on Capitol Hill against
consumer-protection regulation. In May of this year, when Stossel was
promoted to co-anchor of ABC's "20/20," a network insider told TV Guide:
"These are conservative times. ... The network wants somebody to match
the times."

"CODDLING DONALD" PRIZE -- CBS's Lesley Stahl, ABC's Peter Jennings and

On the day news broke about Saddam Hussein's capture, Stahl and Jennings
each interviewed Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. In step with their
mainstream media colleagues, both failed to ask about Rumsfeld's cordial
1983 meeting with Hussein in Baghdad on behalf of the Reagan
administration that opened up strong diplomatic and military ties
between the U.S. government and the dictator that lasted through seven
years of his worst brutality.

MILITARY GROUPIE PRIZE -- Katie Couric of NBC's "Today" Show

"Well, Commander Thompson," said Couric on April 3, in the midst of the
invasion carnage, "thanks for talking with us at this very early hour
out there. And I just want you to know, I think Navy SEALs rock."


In a Nov. 30 piece, Times columnist Friedman gushed that "this war (in
Iraq) is the most important liberal, revolutionary U.S.
democracy-building project since the Marshall Plan." He lauded the war
as "one of the noblest things this country has ever attempted abroad."
Friedman did not mention the estimated 112 billion barrels of oil in
Iraq ... or the continuous deceptions that led to the "noble"

____________________ _______________

Norman Solomon is co-author of "Target Iraq: What the News Media Didn't
Tell You."

2. Best of the Buried Stories for 2003 from

THE BEST OF THE BURIED STORIES Note: The American press received a
dismal ranking of 32nd in the world for freedom of the press by
Reporters Without Borders,

* Dick Cheney’s Secret Energy Meetings: the stonewalling, the evasions,
the lawsuits, the challenges, the MAPS of Iraqi oilfields…..

* The Voting Machine Scandal: a relentless effort by the GOP to
implement a bug ridden, easily tampered with voting machine system,
eliminating a paper trail or any way of verifying an election’s outcome,
the promise by owner of a voting machine company to help deliver the
2004 election to George W. Bush...

* The Project for a New American Century: the players now in government,
the Iraqi war plans of 1997, their influence on the Bush Doctrine of
preemption and military domination of the globe….

* The Office of Homeland Security: Bush’s opposition to a cabinet post
of Homeland Security, coming under pressure, then taking the credit,
then doing nothing to make America safer…..

* The 9/11 Investigation: the opposition, the stonewalling, the lies
about having no idea planes could be weapons, the cover-up, the blacked
out pages….

* The Protest Against the War: the huge rallies all over the nation and
the world, the real numbers of protesters, their stories, their

* The Lies that Led to War: the false claim that Saddam Hussein was a
threat to the US, the false Al-Qaeda connection, the WMD lies, the lies
to the UN…..

* The Terrorization of America: The repeated references to“terror” and
“terrorist” by Bush and his entire entourage as a tool to gain support
for war in Iraq and justify the invasion of Iraq.

* The Civilian Casualtiesof “Shock and Awe” and its Aftermath: the
numbers of dead Iraqi civilians; the wounded; the maimed; - the order to
stop counting civilian deaths given to the Iraqi Ministry of Health.

* Ahmed Chalabi – the Real Story: his not having lived in Iraq since the
1950’s, the tens of millions given to him to foment internal revolution,
his connection to Paul Wolfowitz, the armed thugs he brought to Iraq,
his goals to be in charge…..

* Staging the Saddam Statue Drama : the staging of this PR event, using
Chalabi’s armed thugs to pose as elated Iraqi’s.

* The Women of Iraq: How Iraqi women were the most liberated of any in
the Moslem world, how they are now under Shia rule which has taken their
freedoms away, the rapes, the kidnaps, their fear to walk freely without
male escorts....

* The Debacle in Afghanistan: The failure to win the war against the
Taliban once Iraq diverted our military and our funds, the warlords
return, the heroin production that has been revived, the Taliban
revival, the numbers of civilian deaths…..

* The Coalition of the Billing: exposing the ridiculously small numbers
of military personnel from the touted 60 nation ‘coalition of the
willing,’ their rewards in contracts, in loans, in aid, in favoritism…..

* Hallibuton and Friends: the granting of unbid contracts, the
‘deferred’ payments yearly to Dick Cheney, the failure of school
rebuilding, the profiteering…..

* The Military Dead and Wounded: the real numbers, those dying in
hospitals, the numbers of injured and severity of wounds; the suicides,
the “non hostile gunshot deaths,” the accidents……

* Impeachment: distorting intelligence information as grounds for
impeachment, the statements of John Dean of Watergate notoriety,
petitions calling for impeachment of George Bush…..

* Bush and the World Community: how he has to travel with hundreds to
protect him in every country of the world, how he has to be kept away
from the people, the protests against Bush wherever he travels, how he
could not even visit with the people of the country he claimed to
“liberate” – on Thanksgiving…..

* The Wilson Leak: the criminal outing of a CIA operative by someone in
the White House, the Novak connection, the six week silence by the
President, the refusal to appoint an impartial investigator, the

AMBER ALERT - Missing - American Broadcast News Networks

Is it any wonder that George W. Bush’s approval rating is even in double
digits? If the people only knew! 2003 Rest in Peace. Not in War. Not
in Lies. Not in Bias. Rest in Peace. May 2004 Bring Truth to the
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