A new book accuses the corporate media of acting as propagandists for capitalist states.
Dan Hind’s The Return of the Public cites the backing of the Iraq invasion and the failure to hold financial establishments to account before the credit crunch as examples of the media acting on behalf of the political and economical elite.
He argues that the media have both withheld information from the public and acted as propagandists for capitalist (and imperialist) states. The author calls for the “public commissioning” of investigative journalism.
“Their failure to challenge state mendacity is as predictable as the mendacity itself,” writes Hind, adding that the only way news media can truly hold those in power to account is by “working for the public”.
Reviewing the book for the Independent, Boyd Tomkin writes: “The prospect of 3,000 extra investigators working on ‘matters of interest and concern to the general population’ ought to excite any profession as close to the abyss as serious journalism is in Britain today.
“Those who find his proposals fanciful or utopian – which, in a harsh light, they undoubtedly are – should still sit up and pay heed. Intellectually, far more than just financially, the major media have fumbled too often at pivotal moments in the recent past to hide behind a fraying status quo.” (Source: The Independent)
This article appears in issue 254 of Media Digest.