Terror Threats: News Media “Should Be More Aggressive & Skeptical,” To Avoid Being Manipulated

By Brian 

An e-mailer wonders: “Will any of the cable nets expose this ‘terror threat’ situation for what it is? More Bush lies to rally Americans around him when his approval rating is in the toilet. I’ll be watching to see if the cable news nets investigate this.”

Craig Crawford takes a similar angle with a guest post on the CBS Public Eye blog:

“Pardon my skepticism at the breathless warnings on Thursday of yet another ‘specific threat’ to our safety — in this case, the danger to New York City subway riders,” he says. “…I worry at how the news media seems to feel forced to take these dire warnings at face value despite the pattern of politicians provoking these episodes at suspiciously opportune moments.”

(Now why won’t more pundits say this on TV?)

Crawford concludes: “The news media should be aggressive and skeptical from the outset about the possibility of manipulation in these moments, so that public officials are not tempted to play games with terror threats as yet another news management tool.”