For more than a decade, I have been saying in all kinds of venues, in my written journalism, in speeches, and in interviews, that the most bizarre and surreal aspect of American journalism is that getting caught lying is no barrier to advancement and success. Specifically, I’ve long said, as long as you lie for the right people and causes mainly to advance the interest of neo-liberal global economic institutions, or do the bidding of the U.S. security state, then, I said, you can lie for as much as you want and it will not have any impact whatsoever on your career in corporate journalism.
But that formulation that I’ve long endorsed is far too generous to the point of being misleading. Indeed, it’s actually untrue to say that getting caught blatantly lying has no effect on one’s career in corporate journalism. I was wrong about that. It does have an effect, a very big effect. Namely, the more you lie on behalf of power centers, the more advancement, promotion, and success you will be guaranteed in the world of corporate journalism. Indeed, even that amended formulation still does not go far enough. It is really not hyperbole to say that if you really want to rise to the top of the heap of corporate journalism, lying on behalf of power centers is a requirement. Conversely, if you’re unwilling to lie for those power centers, then success in corporate journalism is all but impossible. It’s a requirement for the job. It’s really astonishing because it’s literally true, the journalists who lie most frequently, casually, and aggressively on behalf of government and economic power centers, are the ones who shoot at the top of the corporate journalism ladder