The sad decline and fall of 60 Minutes has been a long time coming, but now it is nearly complete. Just in recent months: the horrid hit on Americans with disabilities, the Lara Logan affair, and now tonight’s whitewash of NSA (and bonus slam vs. Edward Snowden), hosted by longtime FBI/police/NSA propagandist John Miller. Good night and good luck!
Here’s the complete transcript of tonight’s show. It’s got something to offend everyone. All that’s missing is an Amazon drone delivering a package of listening devices to an NSA agent in the field. Here's a much-needed and valuable factcheck from Spencer Ackerman at The Guardian. Good review at The Atlantic’s Wire highlights the NSA "minders" preventing any tough questions that might have been asked. Marcy Wheeler says John Miller should take that police job again and never work in journalism again. Also don't miss Kevin Gosztola with more on Miller's "revolving door journalism."
And in this interview, Miller explains his motivation: "Because this is really the side of the story that has been mined only in the most superficial ways./ We've heard plenty [emphasis his] from critics" of NSA.
[UPDATE: A Federal District judge ruled on Monday that the NSA's massive collection of phone records is likely unconstitutional.]
The response on Twitter and elsewhere on the Web to the 60 Minutes puff piece was swift and savagely negative. Glenn Greenwald tweets: “60 Minutes forgot to ask about how James Clapper & Keith Alexander routinely lied to Congress & FISA courts—just ran out of time.” And: “60 Minutes producer gushing about his NSA access: ‘It was like Star Trek…. My favorite room was the Black Chamber!’ ” Later he called it and "access-for-uncritical-reverence NSA propaganda piece" that "was a new low for US journalism."