Meanwhile our leader is pressing newspaper editors to kill stories about secret prisons and domestic spying in the name of "national security".
What have we learned from all this?
From Fascism Anyone:
- 6. A controlled mass media. Under some of the regimes, the mass media were under strict direct control and could be relied upon never to stray from the party line. Other regimes exercised more subtle power to ensure media orthodoxy. Methods included the control of licensing and access to resources, economic pressure, appeals to patriotism, and implied threats. The leaders of the mass media were often politically compatible with the power elite. The result was usually success in keeping the general public unaware of the regimes’ excesses.
- 7. Obsession with national security. Inevitably, a national security apparatus was under direct control of the ruling elite. It was usually an instrument of oppression, operating in secret and beyond any constraints. Its actions were justified under the rubric of protecting “national security,” and questioning its activities was portrayed as unpatriotic or even treasonous.
UPDATE: I just found this item in WaPo:
Bloggers, Money Now Weapons in Information War
U.S. Recruits Advocates to the Front, Pays Iraqi TV Stations for Coverage
Not only did the US pay Iraqi TV stations to air favorable news about the US' bombing the shit out of Iraq, a Marine officer in Iraq recruited a blogger to go there and write the good stuff that was coming out of Iraq.