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War On Sale 

Wednesday, Mar 19 2008
Remember when Bush was angling to invade Iran ASAP and televised news responded with explosion-laden road-to-war segment graphics? Way to salt the glass, guys. It's no secret that today's media isn't very hard-hitting in our various run-ups to war, bumping along on chaperoned military expeditions and politely waiting its turn with the White House press secretary. But the industry can take solace in the fact that it's been similarly gutless for the past 40 years. At least, that's the premise of War Made Easy, a documentary that details how the American media has "uncritically disseminated the pro-war messages of successive presidential administrations." Adapted from media critic Norman Solomon's book of the same name and narrated by Sean Penn, the film follows leaders from Lyndon B. Johnson to George W. Bush and draws many parallels between Vietnam and Iraq. "If you're pro-war you're 'objective,' but if you're anti-war you're 'biased,'" says Solomon. "Often a news anchor will get no flak at all for making statements that are supportive of a war and wouldn't dream of making a statement that's against a war."
March 24-25, 7:15 & 9:15 p.m., 2008

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Michael Leaverton


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