I’m a big fan of the Diane Rehm Show, despite the fact that it allows listeners to call in. I’m also a big fan of Diane’s corrections of callers who whine about how the “mainstream media” has failed to cover a story. Yes, the media fails to cover big stories. That’s why you’re reading a blog. And the media blows coverages. So does Darrell Revis. It’s usually not that big of a deal.
What does irritate me is when news shows invite on “experts” who offer uncontradicted opinions on controversial issues. Al-Jazeera, which I watch from time to time because it offers a different bias from the other channels, certainly stepped in it last night by inviting on someone from the International Solidarity Movement (ISM) to discuss the Mami Marmara fiasco. The man was not on the ship, though his wife was on another ship in the Marmara flotilla. Everything he said was at best second-hand. Still, being starved for information on the incident, I understand Al-Jazeera inviting the man on. But when he then claims that the commandos rappelled from the helicopters because doing so allows them to shoot while rappelling, I lost all confidence in the AJ segment. To the best of my knowledge, there is no way to shoot while rappelling; the ISM spokesman was just making stuff up as he went in order to attack his enemies (who, to be fair, he claimed had “bruised up” his wife).
I can’t fault the AJ anchor for failing to correct the man (I’m guessing she’s not an expert in rappelling), but don’t you ask these people what they plan to say before putting them on TV?