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Reporters who helped push police state now complain about politicians controlling the media

Police state

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(NaturalNews) There have been exceptions, of course, but for the most part the mainstream media has enabled extra-constitutional behavior during the presidency of Barack Hussein Obama through acts of omission, if not outright commission, largely ignoring various scandals and some of the most heinous abuses of power. Mind you, this is the very same media that went after George W. Bush with a vengeance -- for legitimate abuses of power, in some cases, but in others with outright fabricated stories, such as former CBS News anchor Dan Rather's now-debunked 2004 report that Bush was AWOL from his Air National Guard unit in the early 1970s.

That said, after an initial flurry of reports, the mainstream press has largely dropped subsequent developments in the Benghazi case, Operation Fast and Furious and the notorious IRS scandal involving improper targeting of conservative and Tea Party organizations applying for tax exempt status prior to the 2012 election. Many press outlets have simply written off the stories as Republican-driven conspiracy theories.

So it is with great irony, then, that a number of media have begun to wake up to the fact that the Obama Administration, which has been oft-protected by the Washington-centric press corps, is filled with authoritarians and "control freaks" who guard government-related information as if the media and the general public have no right to it.

In fact, Democrats in general -- who often claim that Republicans and conservatives are hostile to the media -- were acting as though they have plenty to hide at a recent retreat in Philadelphia, according to a recent report in Politico.

Escorting press to the bathroom

The left-leaning site reported:

Reporters covering the House Democrats' retreat in Philadelphia this week are having a much different experience than when they're on their home turf on Capitol Hill.

Reporters are being escorted to and from the restroom and lobby and are being barred from entering the hotel outside of scheduled events, even if they've been invited by a member of Congress.

Indeed, the site noted, during remarks by Vice President Joe Biden (who is known for making verbal gaffes), reporters were made to be escorted by a junior member of the gathering's press team, even when they had to use the restroom or go to the lobby of the hotel venue in which the retreat was being held.

In addition, the center where the media were to file their reports was located in a separate hotel, so access was necessarily limited to Democratic members of Congress specifically made available to the press.

Translation: The message was tightly controlled because access to the messengers was tightly controlled. No way to accurately report what was being discussed in the retreat, in other words.

"It was a police state. It was absurd how heavy handed the capitol police and Democratic staff were in trying to control everywhere the press went," said New York Times reporter Jeremy Peters.

He went on to say that, at one point, he was prevented from entering the hotel where the retreat was being held, even though he had an invitation to dine with a member of Congress for breakfast.

"I was an invited guest into this hotel, into the restaurant of the hotel. The staff from the Democratic caucus refused to let me into the hotel, and the Capitol Police told me to leave, even after the congressman went to them and said 'no, he is my invited guest,'" Peters said.

"Enemies of the state"

He added that another staffer said the press was being escorted to prevent them from talking to Democratic congressmen.

Politico added that the treatment of reporters was similar to treatment during a Clinton Global Initiative conference in September; then, reporters were escorted by staff right up to bathroom stalls.

In recent days, former CBS News investigative reporter and author Sharyl Attkisson testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee as they questioned Loretta Lynch, President Obama's nomination to replace outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder, that the administration's treatment of reporters has been abysmal.

She said administration officials "bully and threaten" journalists who don't report the White House line or who try to dig deeper into stories when following leads.

"The message has already been received: if you cross the administration with perfectly accurate reporting that they don't like, you will be attacked and punished. You and your sources may be subjected to the kind of surveillance devised for enemies of the state," she told the committee.





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