We can no longer trust that our journalists are reporting the news without underlying corporate or governmental agendas. The US government deregulates radio and right-wing Clear Channel gobbles up available frequencies. Journalists are embedded and the war in Iraq is a noble one. Whether the information is fabricated, one-sided, or illegally obtained, recent scandals like those involving Judy Miller and Robert Woodward only serve to underline the point that journalistic integrity is not what it used to be.
Enter Jeffrey St. Clair and Alexander Cockburn, who have not only kept the tradition of muckraking alive, but have reinvented and reinvigorated it for our times. Their newest effort, End Times, presents a detailed scrutiny of the “quality” print press and leading corporate media in the last decade, detailing a disastrous sequence of misrepresentation, suppression, ignorance, and willful embrace of the government’s agenda. These essays trace the impending disintegration of what is now “old media”—the traditional and now potentially tainted sources of our daily news—and looks toward the emergence of an entirely new landscape of mass communications: one that includes a more populist approach to information dissemination.