tv Breaking the Set RT July 29, 2014 2:29pm-3:01pm EDT
what's up folks i mean martin and this is breaking the set so last week the supreme court voted but hobby lobby is exempt from writing four types of contraceptives guaranteed by obamacare the ruling claimed the mandate violated the corporation's religious beliefs since the court sided with the false assumption that birth control equals abortion considering how you would be easing morning after pills are lumped into the exemption but despite the ridiculousness of the granting corporations religious rights supporters of the decision have responded that it's only a narrow ruling which only applies to those or types of birth control called into question right well it only took one day for that argument to fall apart to see
just one day after the ruling the high court ordered that appeal courts really hear cases where companies have previously fought to deny coverage for any type of birth control still sound like a constricted ruling to you that's not all because as many people have pointed out granting corporations religious freedom is an extremely dangerous precedent so it carpenter of the nation put it business owners now have a new basis for trying to evade anti-discrimination laws and their responsibilities to their employees religious liberty is already the rallying cry for conservatives looking for a legal way to discriminate against americans and further evidence of the why the flexibility of the ruling lawyers have filed motions on behalf of get the detainees asking officials to allow their clients to take part camille prayer during ramadan citing you guessed it their pov iraq. or ruling i mean they have corporations are protected by the religious freedom restoration act sure their client is actually a human being. should be two now while this move by get
a lawyer is actually positive it just goes to show you how the interpretation of hobby lobby is now totally up for grabs because no matter what the kings of the supreme court promise when it comes to legalizing discrimination there's no such thing as a narrow interpretation and let's break the. the please. please. please there are. lots of. you that are actually doing that are great they're looking. at least. lately.
earlier this year it was revealed that over half of all sitting members of congress are millionaires according to open secrets dot org that even with annual salaries of one hundred seventy four thousand dollars nearly triple the median household income in america many of them still complain they're underpaid never mind the fact that every years interest groups on lobbying firms and billions of dollars to help maintain the lavish lifestyle of many congressional members using legal loopholes in the system to ensure those expenditures aren't disclosed in fact the movement toward non-disclosure is so swift that during a closed door meeting of the house ethics committee last week members decided to no longer reveal the source of the funding for their all expenses paid travel that's right it seems congress was tired of the existing ban on lobbyists funding their trips so they just said screw. we're not going to tell anyone about it but lavish
trips abroad by public figures very easily kept secrets last year alone members of their staff took almost one thousand nine hundred trips totaling six million dollars a record since the ban was put in place in two thousand and seven take for instance north carolina congressman mike mcintyre took a fifty thousand dollars trip to australia financed entirely by the defense team in center an association of military contractors who are not technically lobbyists as things you would expect to be illegal in washington such as members of congress financially benefiting from their public service are actually perfectly legal if you go through the right loopholes check this out according to the one thousand nine hundred ninety ethics reform act members of congress are actually barred from using campaign funds for personal use this law held true until the advent of the leadership pac c. because a political action committee is technically separate from political campaign and it can be used for practically anything like the time former vice presidential
candidate john edwards used over one hundred thousand dollars worth of pac money to silence his mistress later prompting a federal investigation and those power funds remain available to even after they leave office meaning that upwards of fifty percent of outgoing senators and reps who leave capitol hill become a lobby is one of access to the money but perhaps the most shocking perk of all when it comes to our so-called representatives is the fact that congress is financially benefiting from insider knowledge all without the fear of repercussion see in theory congressional insider trading is the legal one of the two thousand and twelve stock act and after obama signed the ban on government officials trading on nonpublic information congress moved at the speed of light to overhaul it making it even more difficult to access any records that would reveal the extent of the practice when it comes to institutionalizing the loopholes that give legislators a financial advantage over regular americans bipartisanship is the name of the game because the. for that it was
a practice as plain as day like when congressman john boehner purchased health insurance stocks before kicking off the health care debate in congress or when house financial services committee chairman spencer baucus but on stocks that would rise if the market went down just one day before the u.s. treasury announced the global financial collapse netting as much as fifty thousand dollars in the process according to the hoover institute now despite fane reforms there's a new federal probe and it's into insider trading on capitol hill excuse me forcing the house ways and means committee to announce that legislators are meaning from subpoenas related to the probe wow now whatever happens this investigation will only reinforce that which we already know as long as the money controls washington no at this was insider trading bans are forced financial disclosures will keep our legislators from finding ways around the law.
over the weekend the washington post broke the latest n.s.a. leak by whistleblower edward snowden this time revealing just how many ordinary people are swept up of the dragnet surveillance court of these select documents for every one and tended surveillance target nine so-called incidental or inadvertent targets are caught up in the spying net but beyond the overwhelming amount of ordinary americans being targeted or leak contain other startling revelations such as the fact that the fires the courts intercepted communications were not beyond snowden's reach as government officials have claimed the last year demonstrating just how and secure these data centers really are and shockingly obama himself has catalogued over a thousand times within the documents along with other high ranking government officials making it clear that there are no restrictions on how far the n.s.a. will go well earlier i spoke. one journalist at firedoglake i first asked him to
break down some content i was indiscriminately swept up and archived by the agency . what really sticks out is that you have the washington post mentioning that there are medical records academic transcripts you've got people who are doing a job hunting z. of resumes that work swept up and then you have photos you have photos of like they mention a girl standing outside of a mosque in a dress or you have more risque photos which seem to tap into maybe the voyeurism of the n.s.a. analysts where you've got people who are posing in a bikini tops for photos and none of that information seems to have any relation to anything that i can think the n.s.a. would need to have to do anything really kevin the general counsel for the office of the director of national intelligence flippantly dismiss the report claiming that all it means that each valid foreign intelligence targets talk to an average
of nine people what's your response. but i think that that's quite a deflection i mean first off what they're saying is not that they talked to nine people that on average started such a nine people to saying that ninety percent of this surveillance on average from this sampling that the washington post got to look at thanks to snowden is information that is seemingly unrelated to any of the targets so i don't know if he seems to be mistaken in the way that he's interpreted in that this is a reflection of the number of people someone talks to i mean i can say if they talked to twenty or thirty people it would just mean that it was an even higher percentage of people who were having their information swept up in the dragnet another disturbing revelation that i found was how easy it is to authorize spying fernand parkins by simply labeling them as foreign talk about the methods used to bypass bypass privacy safeguards here for millions. americans haven't. yet and
what's important to note is that barton gellman and timing julie tate who published the story you know in their article that it seems to be deliberate deliberate way to get around protecting privacy so say you have a foreign language in an e-mail you can say that that. foreign that's from outside the united states if you're in a play a location on the internet with an ip address or your computer transmitting and i dress that's foreign then you can suggest that that's evidence that that person is outside of the united states or you go to a chat room and a bunch of people are talking and it seems to be foreign regardless of whoever else is in mary you might just collect all the content inside of the chat room. right yeah i know and there is a lot of a lot of dragnet going on with all these different methods have been fascinatingly enough and these communications were collected during a time that the n.s.a.
was expanded under obama what does this say about how pfizer now operates with this specifically under section seven zero two. what it says is that we're not really having the right debate so far and it's a critical thing that this sort of information is the kind of information that snowden decided to provide to the washington post because we can talk in the abstract about capabilities and we can talk in the abstract about what sort of laws and rules are in place and the safeguards when it all comes down to whether we're going to permit this kind of surveillance we need to know more about the information that is being collected on a daily basis and from this story of alone we begin to get a very good glimpse at the fact that the n.s.a. contains a lot of data that has absolutely nothing to do with fighting terrorism with pushing economic interests which fight it with fighting drug dealers fighting human trafficking whatever that else the n.s.a. is doing much of this information would seem to have no bearing on the fact is that
they're still keeping us in the database and then the issue becomes that it's in the database and what can other agencies and government do does the f.b.i. and the cia or other organizations or other intelligence agencies get the ability to search and use this for their own criminal investigations senator ron wyden seems to think so and kevin you just wrote an excellent breakdown in firedoglake analyzing this latest leak and you compare the n.s.a. of today and the justification for this dragnet to minaret program church committee first talk about men or what minaret was and explain how it relates to what we're seeing go on today was oh basically minaret was a watch list that was put together the n.s.a. and other intelligence agencies were concerned about foreign involvement and antiwar and civil rights movement so they were putting people's names on less people who ended up on the list where people who. we're just just demonstrating a fleeting interest in being involved in activism or having a fleeting interest in political organizing and so now what i pointed out of the
post that i put out the breakdown was basically that you had the n.s.a. making the same defense of that program back in the one nine hundred sixty s. or back in the one nine hundred seventy s. when the church committee was formed and it's very similar to today with them justifying it on the basis defending the incidental collection of information by by saying that it is just incidental and so you know i would say to you that if ninety percent of the information being collected is incidental then we don't have a targeted surveillance apparatus and that's been shown by a massive dragnet that is sweeping up all people's communication yeah almost the exact same terminology they're cavanagh thanks so much for breaking it down coming to stall a firedoglake really appreciate your work. thank you. coming up i'll speak with a former producer of sixty minutes about why he left the program so to me. that's where we've been able to do twenty years best by the progression of
derivatives trading is that now they've got the ability not just to move the price of a stock but to move the price of a country in the case of greece to other countries or ukraine what's america doing in ukraine they want to gas us nuts let's roll under the bus let's use every frickin derivative trick we can under the book let's bring in jill political turn just bring it all in. iran like syria has been george very harshly on the leaves and and the constant battle for change so isn't it justified the game and it's not pursuing to have a weapon down raising to spectrum of percent or eleven would lead to one you know. same time you see worries grouping nuclear weapons in the home probably commune spews did you did they want to see you. to be married in full makeup and swim. we would be stupid not to take you.
if you drive people away from the dollar many people now it must be sitting there saying gosh if we have u.s. dollars and the u.s. decides they don't like us they're going to put sanctions on us so people more and more people would say maybe i should use the u.s. dollar. sixty minutes as one of america's most celebrated journalistic and situations c.b.s. news magazine has won over one hundred and the award since the program first launched in one hundred sixty eight and is revered for its investigative reports have revealed everything from government corruption and military cover ups like the
majority of corporate news today the program has largely succumbed to its paymasters and government sources most recently airing infomercials for the n.s.a. and amazon also producing widely debunked reports eleven dollars the embassy attack and subsidies for green energy companies but according to one former sixty minutes insider the program has been long seen by conflicts of interest and turned censorship charles lewis is a former producer for a.b.c. news and sixty minutes and in a new piece for politico taken from his new book titled why i left sixty minutes he outlines the reasons why he rejected a successful career in the corporate media to start his own investigative journalism institution so to discuss his time at sixty minutes as well as the future of investigative journalism i'm joined now by charles lewis themself founder of the center for public integrity and author of the new book. nine hundred thirty five lies the future of truth in the decline of america's moral integrity thank you so much for coming on the next year olds so in your book you outline your experience that a.b.c. news sixty minutes and a.b.c.
refused a promotion to work with rolled over vera how could you. have the sixty minutes you want to preside in due to censorship talk about the circumstances that led you to completely resign in the corporate media. well with the a.b.c. case i didn't want to work with geraldo rivera he had done some kind of crazy things not crazy but a little bit over the top and i didn't feel comfortable and it would have doubled or tripled my salary but i said no which was you're not supposed to say no to the executives i discovered so my name was mud there for the rest of my days there so i got a call one day from mike wallace i joined sixty minutes as one of his the best care producers and you know he was he was a sensational reporter an interviewer to be fair to him but i also noticed there were certain stories that he and the show didn't want to do which they technically have a right to do they're my bosses but i noticed we were on our ponchos were not doing certain subjects or certain people's names would be not in
a script and at any of those the thing that did it at the end was. i had someone who was basically one of the founder of sixty minutes his best friend was involved in a company that we were reporting on and they kept not approving the story that was to perishable it had to air at a certain time sequence over a period of weeks and i was near the end of that so if it would if we didn't air soon i'd lose the piece so. i had to take his name out of the script and i resigned the next day. i think yeah wow amazing you know obviously every news every newsroom there's heated debate over you know how to cover stories and and what stories to cover what stories not to cover what specifically was it about the culture. all of these news rooms that kind of made you disgusted. well i. there were basically we were not really doing serious invesco reporting we were
doing stories about investigations that others were doing like the government but there was no i wanted to actually do original investigations i went to do interviews with folks who were directly involved i want to go through the documents myself i didn't want to come in after newspapers had written about it and just do morality play based on a few key people's and somebody is article so i had a difference of what i thought we would be doing you know that's a really good point because i even when i cover topics like on this show people say well i didn't read about that the new york times or see it on c.n.n. so how do i know that that's the truth and that's exactly what you're going with what you're saying is that when you do original investigation people still want to have it confirmed by all these other places where they do i would write memos and say you know this is about to happen it was a big big story several times this happened and they'd say well i didn't read the new york times and i'd say that's not my job to read the paper and tell you what's in the paper my job is to find original things but they would be insecure about it
they didn't really want to venture out and also honestly they don't want to spend the money to have someone like me look at something for six months or a year and be out of commission to do any other subjects. is extremely time consuming extremely expensive you know over the years of course you've spoken out against the corporate media apparatus but why did you decide to write the story now well i have been working on this book about what had happened information and truth that's been bothering me for many many years this book took nine years three manuscripts to publishers it was a hard thing to write i also you know i'm friends with lowell bergman and course when the insider thing came out with the industry and internal censorship by c.b.s. in that instance you know there were i could have talked about it then but i didn't want to be seen as pie. going on in the middle of the thing although lowell would have liked me to have said something on the other hand i i i so i waited until i felt it was time to talk about it so i can do
a book about truth and information if i don't acknowledge it occasionally the media's great see watergate see the pentagon papers see met some other things but occasionally the media itself has not quite done what we'd like it to do it would have all the well you know. it's amazing because sixty minutes i grew up as a kid watching sixty minutes i was like one true investigative news program and you saw it on. you know every week and you're really excited to see what they're going to cover and it just seems like it's denigrated so much today we're you know airing essentially infomercials for the n.s.a. drones the benghazi attacks special i mean what do you think are the factors contributing to the once venerable programs decline well i mean part of the problem is you know t.v. audiences are getting much younger for advertisers yet sixty minutes while it's still in the top ten shows which is unbelievable and roughly forty years later more
than whatever it is at this point spend on a long long time on the longest running top ten news show in the history of television but there are there are there viewership is actually older folks over fifty there are some very fine producers i have very close friends who worked with me who are still there who do great work when they can do the that work i think some of the shows in the past season have been not good and i thought some of the ones you've mentioned earlier were not up to their standards having a former government official do a story about the n.s.a. and some of the other stories that's just plain poor judgment appeared in some cases to be flattery regarding one or two companies and that is you know that has to do with management as much as the. as with line producers and researchers internally it has to do with who decides what goes on the air and where the checks and balances there. so anyway i i see here's the weird thing it's still the best
news magazine show probably in the united states to this moment even though it has had it has slipped i think it's fair to say in this past year but i also know great journalists there who do great work that is sure had a very i say a rough year. doesn't do you think that has anything to do with kind of a corporate pressure of now this corporate media apparatus where we have about six corporation controlling essentially ninety percent of americans see hear and read could that be adding some pressure to kind of the sensationalism or essentially this puff pieces that is when i was there as an investigative producer for mike wallace i would do four stories a year i know that in the last few years they moved that up to six stories a year that means less time on the story you find easier stories that means you're doing book reports you're but you're also doing interviews with gets you know some news maker that will make news on monday morning after the show and you're not doing investigative things that take time and cost money and so that part of it is
that it is more stories less time part of it is. the attention span of the media and part of it is we live in a real quick world now shorter soundbites everything shorter and faster and yet sixty minutes is still doing eleven to thirteen minute segments and holding a story in the can for six months now is almost unimaginable and that's the old model so it's very hard for them to do a story that's not real time like something that happened last week in iraq or wherever it is so they're tethered to reality a little well how to bridge this kind of old dinosaur media not to go sixty minutes out of you know times and executors and a long form investigative journalism how do we marry that with kind of the shorter attention spans of. kids now learning about why investigative journalism is crucial and needs to be continued. i mean i'm probably not objective in this regard i've
been in the nonprofit space i started the public integrity at my house after i quit sixty minutes and it's been around twenty five years just want to pulitzer prize and there are now one hundred nonprofits newsrooms with one to two thousand journalists who used to be in the commercial realm and moved to that space the pro publica is the center for investigative reporting the first one in the u.s. even before my organization and i now have a reporting center at american university there are eighteen at universities teaching young people how to do it as students but also working with the new york times the washington post leading out the front line and other places so i see in call creating these values with a new generation but i also see partnerships we jointly hard a reporter a pulitzer prize winner with the washington post we didn't have enough money to arm ourselves my invest a reporting workshop the posted and so we did it together and we're sharing his salary a lot of creativity now in finding new ways to do deeper longer better stories the media landscape around america is very barren i mean you have virtually no funding
for organizations like yours i mean how do you train people who are working with the center for public integrity to operate without conflicts of interests for future practices you disclose for a nonprofit you disclosure of donors it's very very important you do that you make sure that money is either general support just for the act of doing your best care boarding or it's subject areas are so broad it's not pegged to a specific story you make sure that the folks you're working with are not so closely tethered to an agenda that it will impugn your own integrity those are the kinds of things you try to do and you work on a story for one or two years and you go through ten data sets a very source and you cross mash and you show the public the records as well as the written story and they can make their own judgment. and to wrap it up we have about a minute left but i want to talk about your book really quickly nine hundred thirty five lies you out you outlined various ways in which the government has lied to people for the past four decades of wind journalism it's crucial to uncover the
lies i want to give just the most egregious examples that americans may not know about and why that kind of leads into what you're doing today. the three i think the three most obvious one hundred thirty five lives from all the statements by the george w. bush administration the top eight officials over two years three hundred eighty thousand were database we actually tracked every false erroneous statement that turned out that wow that's a lot it's not good we know it's that forty years ago the same thing happened with vietnam we were actually not it not attacked by north vietnam we were provoking an attack against them or getting them to attack us for months we didn't find out till nine hundred seventy one years later when the pentagon papers and of course the worst lie of all time in the twentieth century worse than the world war two or anything that happened with all the things is is tobacco hundred million people died from smoking tobacco lied about its product to the public for sixty four years so those are three but we have. hundreds of law i know you are right i
breaking news on our t.v. e.u. members have officially announced a new barrage of sanctions against russia targeting all sectors of the country's economy including energy in the sense. of profit images emerge from residential areas in eastern ukraine with a care home for elderly people coming under deadly army shelling but claims emerging matthew training on me is using heavy ballistic rockets. the u.s. secretary of state says kiev is ready to bring about a truce in eastern ukraine that's while finding in the area run the malaysian plane crash site least foreign police unexpired stranded.