Sunday, October 02, 2005

Judith Miller, martyr?

If you're not up to date on the Judith Miller saga, it might be interesting to read a little more on it. Miller, a reporter for the New York Times, was sent to prison after refusing to reveal a source before a grand jury. Apparently the source waived his confidentiality rights which releases Miller from her obligation to keep quiet. This all relates to a CIA leak last year or something, and now people question whether Miller even knows anything or not. While that is a hot issue, the other issue is Miller's principles. She went to jail for refusing to reveal a source: that's integrity. Yet now, though the source (I. Lewis Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff) has waived confidentiality, there are concerns that Miller has sold out her principles. But she went to jail! There is a suggestion that perhaps she had things other than the truth in mind:
"Fellow source-hoarder Matt Cooper's thrilling tale of a last-minute reprieve had seemed cinematic at the time. Good stuff, we thought, but what's a book about being a journalist martyr without sleeping on cement and not being able to watch CNN? When Miller stayed clammed up while Cooper sang, people wondered what she knew and now it's clear: She knows the dollar value of minor humiliation and anecdotes about prison laundry" (from Wonkette). This story, to me, just got a little interesting. It turns out that Miller is far from a reputable reporter, according to Alexander Cockburn. Is this a tale of journalistic integrity, upholding the rights of the media? Or could it be that everything is a production and we (more specifcally, I) are caught up in it like it's the latest episode of Survivor? I'm sorry, but I've fallen for the hype.


Scott McC said...

I've enjoyed reading Matt Welch's dispatches on this story:

Who Gets to Play Journalist?

Shield Journalism, Not Journalists"

Hope those links work. See you this weekend, dude.

Scott McC said...

Here's another one on the related issue of "are bloggers journalists"? Well, Chubby?

Shield laws are for you, not me