Author Topic: Freedom of the Press -- being Stolen by Defining "Journalist"  (Read 1624 times)

Trip

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Freedom of the Press -- being Stolen by Defining "Journalist"
« on: August 02, 2013, 12:49:55 AM »
Freedom of the Press being Stolen by Defining  "Journalist"

Today Drudge linked to a story by Kate Irby at McClatchy Washington Bureau about "Senators spar over definition of ‘journalist’ ".

This did not strike me as all that surprising, given the recent "controversies"  over the federal government spying on Journalists, the Department of Justice seizing the phone records of 20 Associated Press reporters over two months without any prior notice, and tracing the phone calls and emails of a Fox News reporter, in addition to the concerns over the numerous government "leaks" coming from government sources via journalists.

This is evidently the third time that Congress has considered a "shield" law for journalists to allegedly protect Freedom of the Press.

However as I read the story I became more and more concerned about what I was witnessing.

The McClatchy story describes these Arguments over what constitutes "a Journalist":

  • The Senate Judiciary Committee, looking to provide protections for journalists and their sources, ran into a roadblock Thursday when lawmakers couldn’t agree on the definition of “journalist.”

    Under the legislation, journalists wouldn’t have to comply with subpoenas or court orders forcing them to reveal sources or confidential information unless a judge first determines there’s reason to think that a crime has occurred and government officials have exhausted all other alternatives.

    ....
    The bill defines a journalist as a person who has a "primary intent to investigate events and procure material" in order to inform the public by regularly gathering information through interviews and observations. The person also must intend to report on the news at the start of obtaining any protected information and must plan to publish that news.

    But senators disagreed on how to define journalists, since some thought the bill’s definition wasn’t specific enough.

    Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., wondered whether it could be used to provide protections to employees of WikiLeaks, an organization that allows anonymous sources to leak information to the public.

    Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., suggested that the definition comprise only journalists who make salaries, saying it should be applied just to "real reporters." The sponsor of the bill, Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., was against that idea, since there are bloggers and others in the Internet age who don’t necessarily receive salaries.

    "The world has changed. We’re very careful in this bill to distinguish journalists from those who shouldn’t be protected, WikiLeaks and all those, and we’ve ensured that," Schumer said. "But there are people who write and do real journalism, in different ways than we’re used to. They should not be excluded from this bill."

    The Standing Committee of Correspondents, a group of reporters that issues congressional press passes, requires that reporters be full time and paid in order to receive passes.

Essentially what we're witnessing here is the government (Congress) arguing over the what constitutes "a Journalist", not really to 'shield' those Journalists, but to best suit the government itself, not the people and their freedoms.   If the resolve of Congress' discussions is anything like what the Standing Committee of Correspondents has resolved, above, then "Journalist" will be limited to those engaging in journalism full time, and being paid for it.   

This would remove protections on those who are free and independent bloggers over the new media of the Internet as having any real protection. 

This strikes me as a direct assault on the Bill of Rights.  The Bill of Rights, particularly the First Amendment, isn't there to detail the some sort of particular "Rights of the Press", nor particular rights of "Journalists", but rather to detail the rights specific to the people themselves!   

To no surprise whatsoever, it is the Progressive fascist Democrats, prone to unlimited government dictate,  that are all cited in the article has having serious "concerns" over the open definition of "Journalist".

The point of Freedom of the Press, being entirely in alignment with Freedom of Speech, is to protect the right of the people to speak the Truth, no matter what it might be,  even if those persons who released the Truth from being insiders in the Federal government might themselves be subject to prosecution under the law.   

If there is "shield" projection for "Journalists", those working full time as a journalist and getting paid,  prohibiting those journalists from having their phones tapped, and their records subpoenaed, should not that same protection be provided to each and every one of us as citizens?

I believe that it should be applied to each of us as citizens, and thereby prohibit the government from using citizen-journalists as a means to track and prosecute their government's own problems, and thereby ensure government secrecy and malfeasance, by instituting a general fear among the populace.

The Bill of Rights is not there detailing some sort of particular, special  rights of the "Press", or Journalists, but rather the common rights shared by each and every one of We, the People.   

The desire to define and limit "Journalism" to being those working full time as a journalist, and being paid,  is merely government's intention to transgress upon that Freedom of the Press, and every bit as egregious as if government had sought to re-define the meaning of "infringe" in the 2nd Amendment, so has to limit the right to Keep and bear arms (which the government has essentially done).

The purpose of "Freedom of the Press" is to protect the people's right to "free speech" in a public forum so as to be able dispense knowledge and educate fellow citizens as to what's going on, and not to recognize a particular right for a limited, privileged group known as "the Press".


« Last Edit: August 02, 2013, 01:04:00 AM by Trip »

Offline kramarat

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Re: Freedom of the Press -- being Stolen by Defining "Journalist"
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2013, 05:25:05 AM »
Completely agree.
Every one of us is a "journalist", with the right to publish anywhere we want to.

I can understand the government going after "leakers" that release information that ties directly into national security, and have compromised information that could lead to damage to the country; BUT, when those leaks identify illegal/unconstitutional behavior on the part of the government, in regard to it's relationship with it's citizenry, the "leaker" should have immediate immunity, and the only punishment being meted out to the government officials that participated.

The Obama administration's sustained attacks on all whistle blowers, is completely unacceptable.

Offline Solar

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Re: Freedom of the Press -- being Stolen by Defining "Journalist"
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2013, 05:51:10 AM »
In Franklin's day, anyone with a pen and access to a printing press was considered a Urnalist, by comparative extension, that makes anyone with a computer and access to a mkt full of readers, a Urinalist.

It also extends to each and everyone of us on this forum, and by % have written more articles than most reporters, therefore we are more qualified than the so called journalist, which mostly is a flooded mkt of liberal bull shit, echoed by more so called journalists.

The media is changing, and the leftists are in a panic that they no longer control it.
#WWG1WGA

Offline kramarat

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Re: Freedom of the Press -- being Stolen by Defining "Journalist"
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2013, 05:42:47 PM »
In Franklin's day, anyone with a pen and access to a printing press was considered a Urnalist, by comparative extension, that makes anyone with a computer and access to a mkt full of readers, a Urinalist.

It also extends to each and everyone of us on this forum, and by % have written more articles than most reporters, therefore we are more qualified than the so called journalist, which mostly is a flooded mkt of liberal bull shit, echoed by more so called journalists.

The media is changing, and the leftists are in a panic that they no longer control it.

CNN seems be doing actual reporting lately. Not only will their ratings increase, but Chris Mathew's head might explode.

This CIA/Benghazi thing, is pretty damned big. It's looking like even lib journalists get tired of eating shit every day and reporting lies.

Trip

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Re: Freedom of the Press -- being Stolen by Defining "Journalist"
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2013, 06:07:06 PM »
CNN seems be doing actual reporting lately. Not only will their ratings increase, but Chris Mathew's head might explode.

This CIA/Benghazi thing, is pretty damned big. It's looking like even lib journalists get tired of eating shit every day and reporting lies.

The CIA benghazi thing has basically been known by those paying attention. Whether the Obama admin is actually covering up something even bigger is the question..

I think this NSA story which Snowden broke about the British spy agency GCHQ being brought off, and acting for the NSA, to do what the NSA itself cannot legally do in this country, is a far bigger story, and yet people are ignoring it, even though I spelled it out.   

Maybe I didn't get the point quick enough,  and viewers are thinking it's only about the NSA paying money to GCHQ.




Offline kramarat

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Re: Freedom of the Press -- being Stolen by Defining "Journalist"
« Reply #5 on: August 02, 2013, 06:40:09 PM »
The CIA benghazi thing has basically been known by those paying attention. Whether the Obama admin is actually covering up something even bigger is the question..

I think this NSA story which Snowden broke about the British spy agency GCHQ being brought off, and acting for the NSA, to do what the NSA itself cannot legally do in this country, is a far bigger story, and yet people are ignoring it, even though I spelled it out.   

Maybe I didn't get the point quick enough,  and viewers are thinking it's only about the NSA paying money to GCHQ.

Incredible. I'll read it through tomorrow.

I hadn't seen it yet. Like many conservatives, I actually have to go bust my ass all day long, and try to keep the bills paid. I'll check it out, and prepare myself for more depressing news.

We still don't know exactly what was going on in Benghazi; but Obama arming rebel, (Muslim Brotherhood), forces, is a pretty good bet.

I'm not going to be surprised to see Obama either pulling prison time, or going into exile.

Offline RGCheek

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Re: Freedom of the Press -- being Stolen by Defining "Journalist"
« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2014, 08:36:14 AM »
Given Obama's tactic of going around Congress with the use of executive orders, ignoring laws he doesn't like, etc, is there a way he might do another end run and implement this via EO's?

 

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