NBC020915The fact that Brian Williams lied about being fired-on in Iraq is more accidental, and less consequential, than the substantial deception, manipulation and misleading, of viewers and readers, that goes on regularly at NBC News — and other news outlets in the U.S. — with real consequences.

In his book The Greatest Generation (Random House, 1998) Tom Brokaw, formerly anchor NBC News, says that he “felt a kind of missionary zeal for the men and women of World War II, spreading the word of their remarkable lives.” He added that telling their stories “had the effect of a chain letter that no one wanted to disrupt.” Today, the same zealousness and mind control is being exercised by American news organization in areas ranging from vaccines to Ferguson and Aleppo.

One of the members of Mr. Brokaw’s “Greatest Generation,” George H.W. Bush–41st President of the United States, is said by Brokaw in the book to have “an unequaled record of public service within his generation.” This is the same man who initiated one of the greatest crimes of the 20th century, the 1990-’91 Gulf War, a war that destroyed countless lives and added to the proliferation of Islamic extremism, which began to re-emerged in the area with the U.S. arming of the mujahedeen in Afghanistan during the ’80’s.

The widespread disorientation and disorder in American society has many parents, not the least of which are media/news organizations, and their zealous reporters, working for the government, advertisers and personal glory — rather than serving the truth.

Photograph: Stephen Wise