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Thursday, September 17, 2015

Dan Blather, new media and Truth

What a crock!

Dan Rather was known for many things but one thing he is not is objective, open minded or truthful. But don't let the truth get in the way of a good fiction.

Some background. First, Dan Rather hates the Bush family, especially George W. Bush.

Then in 2000, Rather, at the last minute, brings out a 25 year old DWI incident on George W. Bush. On November 2, 2000, a couple of days before the election. And he had that news for months, but for some reason he waited till he could really hit Bush and W would have not time to react.

Now we go to 2004. Rather and Mary Mapes put out a story in saying George W Bush didn't perform his drills for the Texas Air Guard. And as backup they use Bill Burket's supposed letters to himself, that were again, written in the mid 70s.

Now I find it curious that the same objective media looks at a possible question if Bush conducted drills in the early 70s, but they will not even check into he background of our current president? But they send over 100 reporters to Alaska the day after Sarah Palin is announced at the Republican Vice Presidential nominee. And they are doing their best to destroy every Republican candidate this year. But I digress.

Now we have the propaganda from Robert Redford, a movie called Truth. Orwell is smiling now. But Redford is not explicitly saying it was "true", but that the corporate big wigs (like him) fell to pressure from the Bush campaign.
TIFF: Dan Rather Chokes Up at 'Truth' Premiere, Praises Film for Accuracy

"A film called 'Truth' should be accurate," the iconic CBS news anchor said of director James Vanderbilt’s movie about his 2006 exit and the events leading to it.

Iconic CBS news anchor Dan Rather on Saturday praised the Robert Redford-starring Rathergate movie Truth for its accuracy and performances ahead of its world premiere at the Toronto Film Festival.

"Naturally I was pleased, and pleasantly surprised. This film is very accurate. A film called Truth should be accurate," Rather told The Hollywood Reporter during a prescreening party. James Vanderbilt's movie centers on Rather's 2006 exit from CBS after a 60 Minutes investigation two years earlier into President George W. Bush’s alleged draft-dodging during the Vietnam war.

Rather praised the performances of Redford as the famed CBS newsman and Cate Blanchett as his CBS 60 Minutes producer Mary Mapes. "The acting is superior. I think it's an emotional film. Of course people will say I found it emotional because it's about me. But I say that as objectively as I can," he said.

The movie, which played to a standing ovation at the Winter Garden Theater, paints a highly sympathetic picture of Rather's role in the scandal that cost him his job at CBS. After the screening, Rather appeared on stage with director Vanderbilt and actors Elisabeth Moss and Topher Grace (Redford did not attend).

Rather choked up when asked by an audience member if he would have done anything differently in his career. "Journalism is not an exact science," he said, adding that there were "plenty of things I would do over."

Since his exit from CBS, Rather said he had "spent a lot of time practicing humility … and tremendous gratitude." In the film, Rather and producer Mapes are depicted as crusading journalists whose story is attacked by critics with a political agenda. CBS News chief Andy Heyward is depicted particularly negatively.

The clear suggestion in the movie is that Rather and Mapes were fired to appease the Bush White House and to protect the CBS financial bottom line. Before the screening, Rather looked beyond his exit from CBS to stress Truth was less about him, Mapes and President Bush and more about the broader corporatization of the news business.

"In recent years, lobbyists, very large corporate executives and political operatives have begun to influence the news people get far more than people realize. In my years in journalism, this is the biggest development — the corporatization, the politicization and the Hollywoodization of news," he said....

Now what caught Bill Burkett and destroyed the credibility of the story was bloggers and other web sites looks at this supposedly 30 year old note and noticed the test was multiple sized.

Letters are different widths, such as an "I" is not as wide as a "W". However, in the early 70s very few typewriters had this feature, they set all letter widths to a standard size. There were some models that had different widths, but they were expensive and used for things like newspapers. I know this because in high school when I was in Air Force Junior ROTC we had two of them and used them to produce the squadron news paper, The Cadet. We would type the draft and then on each line mark it "-6" or "+5", meaning we would have to add a add or subtract spaces to make a right side adjusted. Took forever. Something you do by clicking a button now.

Bloggers and other web sites immediately looked at this and said "Wait, this looks like MS Word default settings and you will never get that from a typewriter." Within days Rather and Mapes were put on the defensive and left to saying "Well, there is no proof they are wrong." Now if his ego had not gotten in the way, Rather could have slipped out of it by saying, "We've got a few issues with our evidence and we'll get back with you..." but he couldn't do that. His hatred of the Bushes overrides anything and it finally bit him in the ass.

One of the major outcomes of this was the slap in the face it was to the major media. For ages they had great power in what was covered, but more importantly, what was not covered. Now with social media, Internet publishing and the deluge of new media their monopoly is gone. And they don't like that. But you can't stop the flow of time and your time is up. For Dan Rather, and the old time major media.

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