Was the White House Corresondents Dinner just a reward for ‘good behaving’ members of the press?

by Glen Wallace

The annual White House correspondents dinner was tonight.  It got me wondering if this dinner was a reward for the reporters for being good loyal members of the Goebbels media.  The night was a big ‘thank you’ to reporters for exclusively lobbing slow pitch softball questions at the president and his cabinet.  It is a night where the members of the media can feel just like the members of the royal court that they normally cover.  I think they all know that if any reporter in the past year who had thrown even one hardball question at his royal highness or his royal cabinet, would be lucky to ever work in D.C. again, much less get invited to the correspondents dinner. 

Anyone who doubts the above premise should look around the dinning hall and the guest list and find even one that had asked a worthy question that is on the unwritten ‘do not ask list.’  For instance has anyone there tonight ever asked the Presidents defense secretary what could possibly justify our some thousand odd US military bases scattered around the globe.  And why, if defense spending cuts were made, wouldn’t those bases be good candidates for closures to save money and what possible negative effect on our nations defense would such closures have (or is the real reason for those bases not defensive but rather offensive military imperialism)? 

Who there ever brought up with Fed chairman Bernanke or Yellen the huge potential for a conflict of interest between the privately owned Fed, and the interests of the American public that the Fed has been granted broad governing power over in the realm of this countries’ monetary policy? 

Who at the dinner, ever brought up with the administration the multiple ironies of the appointment of Jeffrey Immelt, CEO of a corporation notorious for paying little to no federal taxes, to the presidents economic recovery board and the chairman of the Council on Jobs and Competitiveness.  The irony there being the criticisms by Democrats that Republicans keep blocking efforts to insure US corporations pay their fair share of taxes and not be able to avoid doing so through various tax loopholes.  Additionally under Immelt as CEO and Chairman of the board of GE, GE has relocated its X-Ray division from Wisconsin to China.  I bet not a single reporter sitting at one of those exclusive dinning tables, laughing at the jokes, ever pointed out in their reporting any of those ironies, much less direct those points at any members of the administration. 

Also ironic, during the dinner, on the cable channel H2, there was a new episode of ‘America’s book of Secrets’ where the topic this time was secret prisons.  While I just caught the end of the episode I think they brought up in the documentary a number of good points about the growth of this nations prison industrial complex and how the for profit prison industry lobbies for stiffer, longer prison sentences for more US citizens so that the for profit prison corporations can rake in more revenue.  Over the years of putting drug and other non-violent offenders behind bars for long terms, we have created our own Gulag, our own Nazi concentration camps.  Have any of those correspondents asked Obama & Co any pointed questions about the righteousness of throwing into cages non-violent citizens for years on end into the same cage as violent citizens? 

Lastly here, but unfortunately not lastly on the long list of worthy but largely ignored topics by the mainstream media, who at the dinner ever held Obama or anyone in his administration to philosophical account for standing watch while the allowing the rich to just rake in more riches while the rest of us struggle all the more? 

 

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