Shorter David Sirota
But who can blame the conspiracy theorists for postulating that 9-11 was an inside job, when the FCC leaks "secret" information to lobbyists.
But while many of these conspiracy theories are offensive and factually unsupported, the underlying paranoia and loathing are not surprising, and the feelings are not motivated merely by a fear of the next bogeyman around the corner. The sentiments are symptoms of a deep crisis of confidence in our public institutions -- a crisis that is a predictable reaction to a government that now all but admits it breaks laws, hides information and disregards the public.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) provides perhaps the most pristine example of all. In October, the General Accounting Office (GAO) reported that this faceless alphabet-soup agency tasked with regulating the media business now regularly leaks secret information to lobbyists before that information is released to the public. The behavior undoubtedly feeds into the world of "political intelligence" -- a burgeoning cottage industry in Washington whereby well-heeled lobbyists gather inside government information for their corporate clients.
And to close:
In Scripps Howard's report on its poll findings, some experts expressed astonishment at the anger being expressed by the country. But really, we should be baffled if public opinion were any different. Considering what's going on, is anyone actually stunned that America is enraged? Is anyone really confused about why so many believe the government conspires against the public?