journalism is dead

CNN Typist LZ Granderson Simply Does Not Care For Investigative Reporting

Jack NicholsonAmericans are so NOSY, you guys, what with their unrelenting interference in Vice Presidential matters and this bizarre obsession with “unsealing” classified documents to better understand the mistakes and triumphs of the past. Thomas Jefferson? Moron. James Madison? Hippie. And don’t even get me started on George Washington.

Via an Op-ed piece by CNN journalist typist LZ Granderson:

We are a nosy country. Though to be fair, it’s not entirely our fault. Between the 24/7 news cycle, social media and reality TV, we have been spoon fed other people’s private business for so long we now assume it’s a given to know everything. And if there are people who choose not to disclose, they must be hiding something. Being told that something’s “none of your business” is slowly being characterized as rude, and if such a statement is coming from the government, it seems incriminating.

Times have changed. Yet, not everything is our business. And in the political arena, there are things that should be and need to be kept quiet.

Couldn’t agree more. Interest in Kim Kardashian’s comings and goings is exactly like an interest in, say, the meeting minutes between oil executives and elected officials, or the reasons for firing federal prosecutors along ideological lines. EXACTLY THE SAME, especially when the government is just doing its darndest to Keep Us Safe.™ What is this, Iceland?

You see, freedom isn’t entirely free. It also isn’t squeaky clean. And sometimes the federal government deems it necessary to get its hands a little dirty in the hopes of achieving something we generally accept as good for the country.

Laws are made to be broken, amiright bro?  Freedom isn’t free, you can’t make a omelet without breaking eggs. Sometimes, you have to break the law to enforce the law, haven’t you seen Beverly Hills Cop?

Much in the same way, Project Wide Receiver and Project Road Runner — the earlier versions of Fast and Furious under President Bush — were executed with the hope that they will do more good than harm. Hardly anyone in the public knows the finer points of these programs. Were they legal? Hell no. Were they effective? Who knows? Were they done as a way to keep America safe? Yes.

Exactly. Laws are for little people. If you want to, say, sell a bunch of illegal drugs in the next town over and use the proceeds of those drug sales to fund a takeover of the taco stand down the street just in case the local grocery store runs out of prized natural resources, well, the most important question should be whether or not you’re doing all of that to keep you and your family SAFE.

But to go much beyond the criticism of these men runs the risk of learning that this great nation of ours is heavily involved in doing some things that are not so great. Think about it: We have allowed weapons to cross the Mexican border and into the hands of criminals for years. Many of these weapons were involved in killing innocent Mexicans. There’s nothing very admirable about that. But the truth is, it’s very American.

Duh, what is more American than killing innocent Mexicans, especially if we admit that it’s not admirable to have killed the innocent Mexicans? Like the Founders said, our nation’s values are best manifested in the strength of our resolve to kill innocent people in service of ineffective and inhumane policies that prop up special interests at the expense of poor and minority communities. Couldn’t agree more.

And maybe it’s better for us not to be so nosy, not to know everything because, to paraphrase the famous line from the movie “A Few Good Men,” many of us won’t be able to handle the truth.

And that, friends, is what it takes to be a regular CNN typist: a disinterest in investigative reporting, an unquestioning defense of authority, a disregard for the lives of people who aren’t American, and if possible, a heady dose of clichés and movie quotes.


About the author

Kris E. Benson writes about politics for Wonkette and is pursuing a doctorate in philosophy. This will come in handy for when they finally open that philosophy factory in the next town over. @Kris_E_Benson

View all articles by Kris E. Benson
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    1. scvirginia

      Seems plausible- this crap sounds like it was written by someone who took a few flies to the noggin.

  1. Barb

    "Interest in Kim Kardashian’s comings and goings is exactly like an interest in…."

    I Googled "who gives a shit?"
    My name wasn't in the results.

      1. Barb

        Hey Tundra! Let's tweet her and ask:
        Did it hurt when you fell off the whore tree and banged every guy on the way down?

      1. Boojum

        It's easy to get this confused, as this writer should obviously stay in the kitchen and make sammiches.

      2. sullivanst

        Indeed, LZ isn't just a typo of Liz. Probably stands for Lou Zer, would be my guess.

  2. Rotundo_

    CNN, becoming a laughing stock before someone's eyes. Theoretically at least. IF they're stuck in ATL because a duck walked across a runway and air traffic across the entire fucking eastern seaboard ground to a grinding screeching halt.

    1. Boojum

      If you are stuck in Atlanta because a duck walked across a runway and air traffic across the entire fucking Eastern Seabord grinds to a grinding screeching halt, does it make a sound?

  3. Callyson

    And in the political arena, there are things that should be and need to be kept quiet.

    Mittens agrees, and will only be taking questions about income inequality in a quiet room, for background only (no quotes)…

  4. Callyson

    We still don't have access to all of the messy facts surrounding the Iran-Contra scandal that erupted during the Reagan administration. All we know is that weapons were sold to Iran in exchange for hostages and that the proceeds from those sales were used to illegally fund rebels in Nicaragua who were supposedly fighting Communism.

    Yeah, why would we want to know anything else about that can of worms? It's not as if we still have troubled relations with Iran or anything…


    1. Tundra Grifter

      Largely because President Bush (41 – up to his eyebrows in the deal as Vice President) pardoned Caspar Weinberger before he could be brought to trial.

  5. StealthMuslin

    To quote the great R. Milhous Nixon: "If the President does it it's not illegal. So why bother asking?"

    1. chascates

      Yes, yes! The famous 'keep moving' statement. Or 'move along'. In either case Peggy didn't bother.

  6. Tyrannically_Joe

    And maybe it’s better for us not to be so nosy, not to know everything because, to paraphrase the famous line from the movie “A Few Good Men,” many of us won’t be able to handle the truth.

    Wasn't that quote actually the frustrated slip of the Bad Guy on the witness stand that inadvertantly revealed that US soldiers were torturing people, and which only came about because Our Hero goaded him into the outburst?

    I'm just asking, because it seems like that famous quote might actually be the literal exact opposite of how this CNN person I don't care about is trying to use it.

  7. Chow Yun Flat

    The Amerikkkan government has slaughtered innocent men, women and children; tortured people to get information that those tortured didn't have; made war on half the world because it could.

    Since the great majority of the media either supports or doesn't bother with these atrocities Liz Granderson knows what she is talking about. She should be the next presidential press secretary or the dean of the Columbia School of Urinalism.

  8. chascates

    Ah, the Drudge Report has been running a hede that CNN has the lowest ratings ever. It'll probably turn into a glitzy, celebrity infatuated network that just reports 'news' other people have already put out there.

    Oh. Wait.

  9. GuanoFaucet

    Jesus fuck was that dumb. Someone needs to give Granderson the journalistic equivalent of a Code Red.

    1. Boojum

      The journalistic equivalent of a Code Red is editing his copy with MEAN EDITING MARKS in red ink.

  10. BlueStateLibel

    "Hardly anyone in the public knows the finer points of these programs. Were they legal? Hell no. Were they effective? Who knows?"

    Yeah, who knows, only GOD knows. WTF, is this an Onion parody piece?

    1. Negropolis

      That was the most mind-blowing line. I honestly thought when he asked "were they effective?" that the answer was going to be yes, so that at least you could make the argument of "the ends justify the means." But, he didn't even give himself that lifeline. No, the line he gave himself was "well, good intentions are what matters." which is easily the flimsiet argument of any apologia ever.

  11. Lionel[redacted]Esq

    Let' face it, if there were any innocent Mexicans, they wouldn't be in Mexico, would they.

  12. Fairtackle

    Many of these weapons were involved in killing innocent Mexicans. There’s nothing very admirable about that. But the truth is, it’s very American.

    Right, because American exceptionalism. And since were are exceptional, that makes it all good … because we are exceptional … urm…LIberty!

    1. extreme_left

      One has to remember that in every Messican is a American trying to get out, so seen in this light and the American proclivity for shooting neighbors, fellow students etc it makes perfect sense.

      1. Boojum

        Been to Walmart lately? It looks like, in every American, there is a Mexican who just got eated. With a side of cheese nachos.

  13. docteur_giraud

    I've seen "Project Road Runner." It was an Acme program, and it ended in an explosion at the bottom of a canyon.

  14. BigSkullF*ckingDog

    Dear Editrix,

    Tomorrow, I humbly request at least one post that doesn't make me want to slit my wrists or move to Canada (almost the same thing, btw).

    Yours Truly,
    A very depressed and not-so-skullfucking dog

      1. Butch_Wagstaff

        Tomorrow should be SO MUCH FUN!
        I might have to stick my head under a pond somewhere and not breathe for a few hours.

    1. emmelemm

      Canada libel!

      Seriously, what would be wrong with moving to Canada if they'd have us? (They won't.)

        1. sullivanst

          Or scrubbing their tar sludge so they can shove it into a pipeline to spill all over the US.

      1. new_pic_for_NEWTer

        As a semi-proud Canucklehead, and occasional ambassador to places that don't exist, I'm happy to help all you all Wonketeers immigrate.

        Just mention my government name and add the secret phrase "Go Leafs" and you'll be allowed straight in.

        You're welcome.

    2. scvirginia

      I wish I could think of something to cheer you up, but the best I can offer is that we're all in this together.

  15. SayItWithWookies

    Celebrity famewhores do everything they can to get details of their boring, useless lives into the press, abetted by lazy starfucking reporters who like to be spoon-fed gossip.

    Oliver North — and his cronies, all the way up to drooling moron Ronald Reagan, committed serial lawbreaking to do something they were explicitly forbidden to do, and broke an embargo their own administration had against selling arms to Iran in order to do it, and deliberately concealed it. This is neither right nor patriotic nor "American" (whatever the fuck Granderson means by that, unless bumbling stupidity is American).

    Fast & Furious was an ATF operation that went wrong. Holder disclosed to Issa all the details except those that might compromise current activities, yet Issa keeps pressing the idea that the administration is hiding something sinister, mostly for political purposes — smearing the administration and, as Nancy Pelosi pointed out, stopping Holder's actions against voter suppression.

    Why Granderson thinks there's any kind of equivalence among these three vastly disparate situations is a mystery, especially when it's his job to know what the hell he's talking about.

    1. scvirginia

      "…especially when it's his job to know what the hell he's talking about."

      He thought he was just s'posed to be processing words. Oopsie!

      1. SayItWithWookies

        First I thought maybe he was writing on deadline and got too far into it to change once he figured out it was a lousy premise. But then I read back over some of his stuff and it's full of oversimplifications and jumping to conclusions — so yeah, apparently he just spits out streams of ideas and stops when he thinks he's reached a conclusion. How sad that people get paid for that.

        1. scvirginia

          I'm sorry to hear that you had to read back over his stuff.

          I hope you will now give yourself permission to do something much more enjoyable & enlightening for the rest of the evening. Sleeping, perhaps?

          1. Boojum

            I know! Masturbating!

            Well, Hell, Grunderscum did it all over us, so it only seemed fair.

        2. sullivanst

          That's what happens when a major news organization thinks that working for ESPN qualifies someone as a journalist.

    2. HateMachine

      "especially when it's his job to know what the hell he's talking about."

      Sorry, Wook, I was with you up till right here, but this statement is wildly at odds with CNN's actual hiring pracitices. They haven't hired anyone to know what the hell they're talking about for at least a decade, mostly because facts are partisan.

      1. SayItWithWookies

        I guess I haven't been paying attention — I did notice a few months ago when half of their top stories were iReports though, and there are always lots of "dog falls out of airplane, walks 3,000 miles back home" and the latest amber alert kinda stories, but I thought that was pretty much all American news — like HuffPo without sideboob stories.

        1. scvirginia

          That's pretty cool about the dog walking 3000 miles- almost makes me wish I had CNN…

        2. HateMachine

          In its way, I sort of loathe CNN even more than FOX. FOX is a pack of lying assholes actively engaged in burning America down for fun and profit, but as my man Walter said, "at least it's an ethos." FOX at least has a(n apocalyptic) vision of America, and presents a stable worldview that, viewed in a terrible light by the willfully ignorant, could be mistaken for fact.

          CNN, in an effort to stake out "the center" and be "the voice of reason" just makes their newsroom a place where objective facts do not exist. They deliberately cut interviewees and debaters from both sides off right as they're about to make something resembling a substantive point, and then sew the segment up with a nihilistic little "well I guess opinions differ on the subject of gravity, who will ever be able to say for sure?" And yeah, all the iReports and Cute Dog Stories are handy methods for avoiding having to say anything worthwhile.

          CNN, in short, is all about masturbating furiously to a political horse race, as though there was nothing actually at stake in this besides either side's personal pride. And that aspect seeps out into the rest of journalism. I honestly believe they're a bigger net detriment to America than FOX. FOX lies, but a compulsive liar is a known quantity. CNN wants to pretend that nothing can ever be known.

          1. UnholyMoses

            I really wish I could give you more than just one upfist for that.

            Seriously. One of the best comments I've read … pretty much anywhere. Just perfect. Nailed. It.

            **standing ovation**

  16. rickmaci

    It's LZ Granderson folks and it's HE, not SHE. He writes this kind of nonsensical shit for ESPN most of the time, i.e. he is a sportswriter. They tend to be a bit on the obsequious side when it comes to established authority. Makes it easier to take the comp tickets and freebee press box chow. Nuff said.

    1. SayItWithWookies

      Oh great — I can't wait for his novel, The Five War Criminals You Meet in Heaven.

      1. Negropolis

        Mitch does try so very hard, bless his heart. People in Detroit either love him or hate him. He's a better community organizer than he is a writer, let's just say that.

    1. Butch_Wagstaff

      Sorta like someone who dresses as a homeless person and screams at people can now be called a "singer".

  17. James Michael Curley

    If Holder is in contempt of Congress and he has to release all those documents, will we find out where Neilist has been for the past six months?

      1. James Michael Curley

        I don’t know but it’s probably noisy. Blaat, Blaat, Blaat, Blaat (poorly rendered sound of an AR-15 with the auto limiter ground off.)

    1. sullivanst

      Indeed. Extremely highly recommended, as it highlights the fact that everything the GOP has been saying about F&F is a lie.

  18. iburl

    As a liberal, I don't often say this type of thing, but, if you don't like our citizens questioning our government…


    This article is almost stupid enough for me to want to arrest Holder too.

  19. EatsBabyDingos

    I heard that out of the 3,947 toads in existence in the world, 4 of them will get you buzzed if you lick their butts. Oh wait. 5 toads, but I can hardly get my little tongue into his fartbox. THIS is CNN.

  20. Blueb4sunrise

    In related News News: NPR had on some Astrologers and/or Tarot Readers to predict what the SCOTUS would rule. I don't know what they predicted because I almost broke the car radio trying to get that shit off.

    On the return trip, I gave it another try and they told me that Defense Contractors employ a lot of people and they're worried that the impending cuts would mean people would be laid-off. And WE CAN"T HAVE THAT!!!! Also, John McCain.

    1. Butch_Wagstaff

      Thankfully I didn't hear the Astrologer/Tarot Reader/Fraud thing. It would have sent me over the edge.
      I know ya got to fill out a show but…really? Why not just have some people examine the turds in a cat's litter box to predict who's going to win the Presidential election?

    2. fuflans

      ha! the answer was: yes and no.

      apparently they disagreed over whether or not mercury was in retrograde.

      not even a little making that up.

  21. Estproph

    "Hardly anyone in the public knows the finer points of these programs. Were they legal? Hell no. Were they effective? Who knows? Were they done as a way to keep America safe? Yes."

    With this logic, why not kill everyone who isn't an American? Not that there aren't people attempting to do just that…

  22. Crank_Tango

    Jeeze, if only CNN knew who was to blame for the 24 hour clusterfuck news cycle…the internet?

  23. sezme

    Did I pay for the house my family and I live in?
    Do I have the legal right to keep the former occupants imprisoned in the basement?
    Beats me.
    Am I doing what I think is best for my family?
    Shut up and iron my shirt.

  24. scvirginia

    Telling readers that they can't handle the truth is just a lazy ass way to say LZG can't be bothered to find out the truth. I hope he's not calling himself a journalist.

  25. ElPinche

    I'll say it again. Since no one trusts the black guy (Holder), I say we pluck George W from the safety of his Dallas home and Cheney from his sarcophagus and we clear all of this Fast & Furious stuff up , right quick.

  26. Antispandex

    " And maybe it’s better for us not to be so nosy, not to know everything …."

    Ignorance Is bliss?

  27. bikerlaureate

    …the hope that they will do more good than harm.

    Well, dang, if that's good enough for the Most Righteous Bryan Fischer, it's good enough for me.

  28. Negropolis

    This country is so incredibly not curious about the things that really matter, that it's not even funny. Really, it's not funny; it's scary. If Americans were nosy, we'd probably be in one less war than we are, Dubya wouldn't have become president, etc…BTW, never liked LZ.

    The road to hell is paved with good intentions..and cheap asphalt, because your city hired a shoddy contractor hoping to keep a long-term contract with the city for the work.

  29. HistoriCat

    Man, I remember when CNN was the go-to source for big news story.

    How the mighty have fallen.

  30. starfanglednut

    Like I said to my best friend just the other day:

    "Did I steal the money from your wallet? Hell Yes. Does this mean I am a shitty friend? Who knows? Was it done to buy pizza? Yes."

    "So don't be so nosy, because you can't handle the truth!"

  31. Boojum

    Doos it meen we suk win we ly? Yus. Doos we cair? Fuk no. U can't handl usrs troofs.

    I HATE stupid people.

  32. lisawines

    Here's what Blake Hounshell, editor of Foreign Policy magazine and Radley Balko, senior writer at Huffington Post tweeted about Granderson's article: @blakehounshell Horrible stuff RT @radleybalko: A journalist wrote this. How embarassing.

      1. sullivanst

        So apparently Granderson's main gig is for ESPN. I find that revealing, but maybe I'm just being nosy.

  33. scvirginia

    "Many of these weapons were involved in killing innocent Mexicans. There’s nothing very admirable about that. But the truth is, it’s very American."

    Why duz LZ Granderson hate America? Why?

  34. barto

    Whenever someone says "think about it" I cringe, because I know what's coming next is something they probably really haven't thought about at all. To go the next step and put it in writing…

    1. Negropolis

      It'd be irresponsible not to speculate.

      I kind of saw this coming, though. Whenever the nation gets whipped up in a hysteria about a new drug, the story is usually more complicated than they want to report. And, maybe it just had to do with the fact that the dude that did this looked crazy, to me.

      1. not that Radio

        But but but "whacked out on drugs that we deliberately misunderstand" fits our media narrative, while "languished for years beneath our failed medical system and didn't receive treatment for mental illness " does not. It's just not very sexy. If you were a teevee news producer, you'd know that, and we wouldn't be having this conversation.

  35. Boojum

    So, with this talk of killin' n all, I am forced to wonder why some fine young man with an exceptional piece of machinery and a very steady hand has not yet taken a bead on the Koch brothers from 500 or 1000 yards out. Lancing a major boil, as it were.

    With surveyors' marks and a high powered vote delivery system, of course.

  36. James Michael Curley

    As the morning dawns whereby all the greedy, self serving f*ckwards of the republican persuasion may get what they want from the increasingly biased Dancing Bears, just a reminder that James Michael Curley and almost eight million will become eligible for Social Security and Medicare over the next two years.

    As we age and become more enfeebled don't you wish we could have afforded the ridiculously exploding cost of primary health care over the last thirty years? Sure would have drastically reduced that burden you are going to see sucked out of your taxes in the next ten years.

    1. Negropolis

      Where we are on this day is a perfect example of what happens when you water down something that was already a Republican plan to the point of where it becomes completely feeble.

      It's crazy that Mitt "Father of Obamacare" Romney may actually get some kind of advantage out of whatever is ruled on, today. This is why you don't play the Republicans game to begin with. If we weren't going to have a public options, the very least that could have been done was to make the funding mechanism a clear tax so as to avoid it coming to the Supreme Court.

  37. telecustom1972

    Just for the record, I am far more interested in Kim Kardashian's "comings" than "goings".

  38. ttommyunger

    Based on our History, killing brown people, or any people, for that matter,is very American. (whimpers)

  39. sullivanst

    Y'know, when I was growing up a long time ago, "none of your business" was always considered at least as rude as "shut up".

    Turns out, though, the more we learn about Fast & Furious, the more we learn that it was trying in completely legitimate ways to combat a serious pre-existing problem without doing anything to exacerbate it in the attempt to fix it. We totally CAN handle the truth, although Issa, Grassley &co. clearly can't, and wouldn't even be able to identify it if it slapped them repeatedly in the face with giant rubber gloves while wearing a 4-ft high neon sign reading "I'm the truth".

  40. DerrickWildcat

    I believe that there are certain things that we are not meant to know. Such as, where did that thing come from, (It wasn't there a minute ago) why Spiders can't fly or where garlic comes from. These are examples of why living life is good. I think the person who wrote this story understands that.

  41. outragedcitizen

    I believe the Jack Nicholson character in "A Few Good Men" turned out to be an insane, self-serving, megalomaniac. What does that make the people Granderson is saying we should not question?

  42. neiltheblaze

    This guy has simply encapsulated CNN's own journalistic standards in a way that even Wolf Blitzer can comprehend.

  43. gurukalehuru

    To tell you the truth, I hated that movie.
    One easily quotable shouted line by Jack Nicholson does not make up for the boredom of watching Tom Cruise be a lameass playing a lameass for two hours.
    And the line doesn't even make sense, in context. I mean, if the truth was that brain-sucking aliens were poised to annihilate the human race, if the truth was that Hitler had survived, got a sex change operation and was better known today as Betty White, those would be things that are hard to handle.
    A couple of marines beat the shit out of a retarded marine and their commanding officer is an asshole? What's not to handle?

  44. Diabeetis

    Even though I think the GOP outrage over Fast and Furious is the b.s. that it is, it is pretty funny and ironic how Granderson doesn't sound much different here than a pro-Bush Republican circa 2003.

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