Previous posts in this discussion:
Postre: US: Ex-Senator Ted Stevens Dies in Plane Crash; on Judgments and the Press (Bienvenido Macario, Philippines/US) (John Eipper, USA, 08/12/10 7:49 am)
On 11 August, Eugen Solf wrote:
I know nothing about Senator Stevens other than he died in a plane crash and hence know nothing about the legal case. But I think Bienvenido and Cameron (both from 11 August) are implicitly talking about two different things.
Bienvenido Macario responds:
Eugen is correct and so is Cameron. From the legal point of view the system worked, because ex-Senator Ted Stevens did not go jail. But he was found guilty in the trial by publicity and acquitted as if on appeal during the actual trial of the case. My point is we are not dealing with an ordinary citizen here. Ted Stevens was a US Senator when he was charged. And if this could happen to a sitting US Senator, what more to ordinary citizens, corporations and organizations.
There seem to be a reign of error or terror (by the media?) that has been going on for quite some time now. Here are three quotes about the media that I find interesting:
"To the press alone, checkered as it is with abuses, the world is indebted for all the triumphs which have been gained by reason and humanity over error and oppression."--Thomas Jefferson
It's time we questioned such power in the hands of a small and unelected elite. The great networks have dominated America's airwaves for decades (before cable TV). The people are entitled to a full accounting of their stewardship."--Spiro T. Agnew
"If newspapers are useful for overthrowing tyrants, it is only to establish a tyranny of their own."--James Fenimore Cooper
JE comments: The Press since its infancy has been pillorying politicians. (Politicians came earlier, but prior to the Press there was always gossip in the agora.) Jefferson himself was often the subject of his enemies' printed ire, as was Andrew Jackson. In the case of the late Senator Stevens, his own colleagues (from both parties) asked him to step down, including Senators McCain and Obama. A question: was it ever proven that Stevens did not accept illegal gifts on his home renovations, or was the case thrown out only on technicalities?
Admittedly, as someone with two vintage houses in constant need of work, I wouldn't mind a contractor's freebie or two...