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John Swinton
Former chief of staff for the New York Times.

The media print lies.

“There is no such thing, at this date of the world’s history in America, as an independent press. You know it and I know it. There is not one of you who dares to write your honest opinions, and if you did, you know beforehand that it would never appear in print. I am paid weekly for keeping my honest opinion out of the paper I am connected with. Others of you are paid similar salaries for similar things, and any of you who would be so foolish as to write honest opinions would be out on the streets looking for another job. If I allowed my honest opinions to appear in one issue of my paper, before twenty-four hours my occupation would be gone. The business of the journalist is to destroy the truth; lie outright; to pervert; to vilify; to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell his country and his race for his daily bread. You know it and I know it and what folly is this toasting an independent press? We are the tools and vassals of rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks; they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes.”

Source: Bill Clinton: Friend or Foe? by Ann Wilson, 1994, pages 172-173. Also: “But Surely, If This World Conspiracy Were True I Would Have Heard about It in the Daily News!” Free American Newsmagazine, February 1998, page 53. Also: Why a Bankrupt America? by Devvy Kidd, 1993-1994, page 30.
Hardcopy: Copy of pages 172-173 from Wilson’s book, page 53 from the Free American, and page 30 from Why a Bankrupt America?
Where: While making a toast at the New York Press Club.
When: 1953.
Contributor: AIM.

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