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Tuesday, March 28, 2006

The Fear is in the Room: Inside Our Unbrave Media World

by Danny Schechter
NEW YORK ? There is a scene in the movie Good Night and Good Luck about an outbreak of insecurity that nearly ended the late CBS News legend?s broadcast challenge to red-hunting Senator Joe McCarthy before it aired.
 
A few hours before the historic moment that demonstrated that newscasters can take on demagogic politicians and deceptive policies, Edward R. Murrow?s colleagues were having second thoughts.
 
One pointed out that McCarthy would likely lash back. Another worried that the program would be seen as a mere gesture and accomplish nothing. A third wondered if it was worth jeopardizing the show and CBS News by going after such a high-profile figure so forcefully.
 
Murrow listened with growing despair at timidity packaged as pragmatism.
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