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Journalistic Standards – My How The Mighty Have Fallen

NBC News has announced that chief fantasy reporter and anchor Brian Williams has been handed a six month suspension without pay. Wow, just imagine the totally awesome stories he will have to tell when he gets back!

I suppose this was the best move NBC News could make short of actually holding him accountable. The damage done to the credibility of their news network would have been much greater if they still had some, but frankly the bulk of that damage was already done before the Brian Williams thing came to light. At least this way NBC won’t have to add a laugh track to the evening news show.

What is really going on here, as Ben Shapiro over at Breitbart pointed out, is that the old media giants still have not woken up to the fact that their world has changed and the “new media” is now in charge. Gone are the days when “Uncle Walter” could simply pronounce something to be true and we would all just take it as the Gospel. As Dan Rather discovered, an army of media watchdogs is there to keep you honest.

Those of us who have been portrayed as sitting in our pajamas pretending to be journalists by the self-aggrandized “serious journalists” have had a lot of fun with Brian Williams and we can now do our victory dance. The victory however, is not to celebrate the fall of a fellow human being, it is to celebrate the fact that the field of journalism, which once held itself to a much higher standard, is now being forced to clean itself up, however grudgingly, by the very people it is supposed to serve.

Few people are aware, but the first School of Journalism in America was started at Washington and Lee University in Virginia by former Confederate General Robert E. Lee who is revered by many to be one of the most honorable men in American history. Perhaps it is time for those who call themselves journalists to study this great man and attempt to absorb just a little of the integrity he demonstrated throughout his life. Just to provide them with a little incentive to do so, the media giants should never forget that (in our best Walter Cronkite voice):

We Are There!

About James P Willis

James P Willis lives with his family in Blacksburg, Virginia. He is a Cold War submarine veteran, political activist, and retired industrial mechanic. James is currently an Editor / Contributor for NewsNinja2012, a freelance writer, and his blog can be found at

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