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Criticized on Seizure of Records, White House Pushes News Media Shield Law (NYT)
Under fire over the Justice Department’s use of a broad subpoena to obtain calling records of Associated Press reporters in connection with a leak investigation, the Obama administration sought on Wednesday to revive legislation that would provide greater protections to reporters in keeping their sources and communications confidential. Capital New York The administration opposed an initial draft of the Free Flow of Information Act, but eventually supported a compromise version that would allow federal judges to protect reporters from subpoenas for information, if the judge determined that the news value of the reports exceeded the government’s interest in uncovering the sources of a leak. HuffPost / The Backstory New York Times reporter Charlie Savage asked Attorney General Eric Holder, who had just announced he’d recused himself from the AP leak investigation, “Are you also recused from the Stuxnet investigation out of Maryland?” The New York Times has reason to be concerned about whether investigators are using similar tactics on them. The Maryland case is believed to be focused on Times chief Washington correspondent David Sanger’s reporting on how the U.S. and Israel helped derail Iran’s nuclear program through cyberattacks. Sanger’s June scoop, along with the Times’ front-page article on Obama’s terrorist “kill list,” spurred Congressional calls to investigate the leaks of classified information. The Washington Post / Erik Wemple Media Matters for America, a group that monitors the country’s conservative media for distortions and inaccuracies, fell in for criticism Wednesday over the Justice Department’s secret subpoena of the Associated Press’s phone records. Evidence of this Media Matters-Obama administration mindmeld? This piece here, which says: “If the press compromised active counter-terror operations for a story that only tipped off the terrorists, that sounds like it should be investigated.” The Daily Beast / Politics Beast David Brock explained all in a statement. “Media Matters for America monitors, analyzes, and corrects conservative misinformation in the media and was not involved with the production of the document focusing on the DOJs investigation,” he said. “That document was issued by ‘Message Matters,’ a project of the Media Matters Action Network, which posts, through a different editorial process and to a different website, a wide range of potential messaging products for progressive talkers to win public debates with conservatives.”
Posts Tagged ‘Carl Bernstein’
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There’s a special advance screening tonight of All The President’s Men Revisited at Washington D.C.’s Newseum, co-presented by the White House Correspondents’ Association. To be followed Sunday night at 9 p.m. by the feature documentary’s Discovery channel debut.
FishbowlLA’s favorite portion of this fascinating, highly recommended retelling of the intertwined stories of the real and Hollywood versions of Woodward & Bernstein comes around the half-hour mark. That’s when Redford himself notes the irony of the media’s efforts to expose the identity of Deep Throat leading, belatedly, to a street in the Bay Area called Redford Place.
Rachel Maddow shares some great comments in the Deep Throat segment, alongside Redford, Woodward, Bernstein, Jon Stewart and Tom Brokaw. Bernstein has the funniest line, noting that the only reason the secret of the Hal Holbrook-portrayed source’s identity lasted so long is because neither he or Woodward told their ex-wives. From there, the documentary moves to Marc Felt‘s daughter Joan, who recalls what it was like for her dad’s courageous “follow the money” efforts to finally be confirmed.
Long before Watergate and a starring role in All The President’s Men, Robert Redford knew there was something off about Richard Nixon.
Chatting last night with LA Times “Indie Focus” reporter Mark Olsen at his new Sundance Cinemas on Sunset Blvd. after a newspaper subscriber screening of The Company We Keep, the actor-director remembered the time he was presented at age 13 in Santa Monica with a high school athletic award. “I didn’t know who he was,” Redford said of the 1949-50 school year encounter. “He was just a guy in a suit. But it was Earl Warren, the governor, and Nixon, then a senator. When Nixon handed me the award and shook my hand, it was just a vibe. I thought, ‘I don’t like this guy.’”
There was also some great reminiscing during the Q&A about how Redford gradually became interested in the investigative efforts of Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein. ”When I read an article about them, I realized one was a Jew and one was a WASP,” Redford recalled. “One guy was a Republican, the other was a radical; one guy was a very good writer, the other wasn’t so good. They didn’t like each other, but they had to work together. I thought, ‘Wow, that’s fascinating, that’s a great story.’”
Hollywood has been noticeably silent over the News of the World phone hacking scandal that has Rupert Murdoch‘s media empire backpedaling. Reuters says our town is “gloating silently” over the affair, due to the fact that Murdoch’s Fox Television network and 20th Century Fox film studio employ more than a few people ’round these parts.
But there are more than a few people in Hollywood who have every reason to cheer the paper’s demise. Media Matters compiled a nice roundup of Hollywood’s past clashes with NOTW. Included in the list is this fascinating little yarn. When actor Hugh Grant wore a wire during a discussion with a News of the World reporter a few months ago, this is what he was told:
So I was sent to do a feature on Moulin Rouge! at Cannes, which was a great send anyway. Basically my brief was to see who Nicole Kidman was shagging – what she was doing, poking through her bins and get some stuff on her. So Murdoch’s paying her five million quid to big up the French and at the same time paying me £5.50 to fuck her up . . . So all hail the master. We’re just pawns in his game. How perverse is that?
Kidman, incidentally, is reportedly the godmother to Murdoch’s two youngest daughters.
He deemed Brokaw one of the best speakers to have graced the event, right up there with Colin Powell, Ken Burns, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein. He also noted that Brokaw, during a dinner held immediately beforehand, suggested that Ronald Reagan‘s terms as California Governor dealing with Jessie Unruh and the Legislature prepared him better than most for the challenges of the U.S. Congress. Writes Lesher:
It is interesting to me that in their visits to “Newsmakers,” Brokaw, Bob Schieffer, Lesley Stahl and Powell all had anecdotes about Reagan that were central to their talks. One can recall when it was downright hip to criticize the Gipper as being unintelligent, superficial and the like.
Carl Bernstein, “What bothers me… and I also think that there’s a little too much nostalgia about maybe a golden age of ‘investigative journalism’ that never really existed.”
The unsurpassed anonymous source that brought down the Nixon administration and fueled vigorous debate for decades as to his true identity, has died. Mark Felt, the FBI’s ‘number two’ man, a protege of J. Edgar Hoover, gave information to young WaPo scribes Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein about the break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate complex.
Woodward always said that the identity of Deep Throat would not be known until after he died. Our money was on it being Pat Buchanan (but put that in the pile of things we’ve been wrong about). But in 2005 – they let the proverbial cat out of the bag and for a month all we could read about in the newspapers were the phrases ‘deep throat’ and ‘number two man’.
The porn industry-strewn San Fernando Valley was in mourning yesterday when word got out that “Deep Throat” director Gerard Damiano had passed away in Florida.
He was 80.
Damiano died Saturday at a Fort Myers hospital, his son, Gerard Damiano Jr., said Monday to the Associated Press. He had suffered a stroke in September.
“He was a filmmaker and an artist and we thought of him as such,” the younger Damiano said. “Even though we weren’t allowed to see his movies, we knew he was a moviemaker, and we were proud of that.”
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RADAR posts their Winners and Sinners list but Charles Kaiser sounds more like a gushing fanboy than any sharp media critic. He squashes some low-hanging fruit, like Deborah “Didn’t I Ask That?” Solomon, but practically wets himself in praising the unwatchable mess made by director Julie Taymor:
Winner: Julie Taymor for Across the Universe, a charming musical starring adorable newcomer Jim Sturgess. The movie uses more than 30 Beatles songs to propel us through a story that touches all the stations of the ’60s cross. One bad creative decision: Revolution Studios head Joe Roth tried to shorten the movie by 30 minutes. Taymor went berserk and got it all put back. At 133 minutes, the movie is exactly half an hour longer than it should have been.
Most of his praise is reserved for household names, like Carl Bernstein, Arthur Schlesinger, Jr, Lara Logan, Jeffrey Toobin, and most of the New York Times. Really, it’s like he’s superpoking his Facebook roster, should one exist.