[guest post by JVW]
The New York Post today provides some interesting tidbits from the forthcoming book by Sharyl Attkisson, Stonewalled: My Fight for Truth Against the Forces of Obstruction, Intimidation, and Harassment in Obama’s Washington which is set to be published on November 4. Faithful readers of Patterico’s Pontifications will recognize Ms. Attkisson as the brave reporter who has done more than anyone in Big Media to hold the Obama Administration accountable, only to see her efforts thwarted by her bosses at CBS News.
There are plenty items of interest in the Post’s reporting. One of the things that comes through loud and clear is the degree to which the Obama Administration expects meek cooperation from Big Media:
Another White House flack, Eric Schultz, didn’t like being pressed for answers about the Fast and Furious scandal in which American agents directed guns into the arms of Mexican drug lords. “Goddammit, Sharyl!” he screamed at her. “The Washington Post is reasonable, the LA Times is reasonable, The New York Times is reasonable. You’re the only one who’s not reasonable!”
Not only do Obama operatives throw-up roadblocks in the path of whom they perceive as unfriendly reporters, they also make use of their contacts within CBS management to run interference for them, including blood ties:
When the White House didn’t like her reporting, it would make clear where the real power lay. A flack would send a blistering e-mail to her boss, David Rhodes, CBS News’ president — and Rhodes’s brother Ben, a top national security advisor to President Obama.
And, of course the infamous Washington social circuit:
[Attkisson] was turning up leads tying the Fast and Furious scandal (which involved so many guns that ATF officials initially worried that a firearm used in the Tucson shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords might have been one of them) to an ever-expanding network of cases when she got an e-mail from Katie Couric asking if it was OK for Couric to interview Eric Holder, whom Couric knew socially, about the scandal. Sure, replied Attkisson.
No interview with Holder aired but “after that weekend e-mail exchange, nothing is the same at work,” Attkisson writes. “The Evening News” began killing her stories on Fast and Furious, with one producer telling Attkisson, “You’ve reported everything. There’s really nothing left to say.”
The book also calls-out by name the CBS News executives who are in the tank for bureaucratic progressivism in general and the Obama Administration in particular, and allow their political preferences to override any interest in reporting the truth:
Reporting on the many green-energy firms such as Solyndra that went belly-up after burning through hundreds of millions in Washington handouts, Attkisson ran into increasing difficulty getting her stories on the air. A colleague told her about the following exchange: “[The stories] are pretty significant,” said a news exec. “Maybe we should be airing some of them on the ‘Evening News?’ ” Replied the program’s chief Pat Shevlin, “What’s the matter, don’t you support green energy?”
Pre-order the book from Amazon. And never trust the hacks at CBS News to report honestly on politics.