Welcome to my blog, Justice For The Messenger. Like Gary Webb, in the 1990s I found myself studying the deep politics of the illegal drugs trade. The October 2014 opening of the film Kill The Messenger, which relates his heroic and tragic saga, has prompted me to revisit my own researches and archives, in order to publish whatever supplemental material I can add to support his contributions the scrupulously professional journalism for which he was both celebrated and vilified. Gary Webb paid a terrible price at the hands of those who vilified him; he found himself permanently exiled from his career as a professional investigative reporter, even though much of his controversial work was eventually grudgingly vindicated by the target of his inquiry. This blog is intended as an effort to add to that vindication. If all goes as planned, I anticipate having a lot of material to share with my readers.

I miss Gary Webb.

I only spoke with him twice: in the radio interview that appears elsewhere on this site, and in the phone call to set up the interview. They were memorable conversations. I wish I had followed up on them.

We had a lot to talk about. By the strangest of coincidences, for the previous three years, I been researching the same topic as Gary- the sordid hidden history of the American Drug War, focusing in particular on the topic of complicity between U S. government agencies and the illegal drugs trade. I had also taken the step of hosting a public affairs radio show devoted to the topic, on KDVS-FM, in Davis, California. I had been a music DJ on KDVS prior to that point; the show, titled Open Hearings, was my first foray into radio journalism. Readers may want to bear that in mind when reading the transcript of the interview on this site.

This is a new blog, and a work in progress. I’m building it from the ground up. Pardon my sawdust; you’ll probably notice some around.

IMPORTANT NOTE: I’m not allowing comments at this time.

The main reason for this policy is my loathing of comment spam, which is a perennial affliction of Internet comment sections everywhere, even those of large-budget publications. I’ve had a few blogs before; the proliferation of comment spam was discouraging, and probably a factor in my eventual abandonment of those projects. I intend to stay with this one.

My second reason for shutting down comments is that I have better things to do right now than reply to comments, moderate, or manage them. I enjoy dispute and debate in Internet comments quit a lot, actually. But it takes time and energy, and I prefer doing it in venues that draw enough readers to make it worth my while. I’m not about to get into stem-winding debates with comment writers unless this blog really starts attracting a sizeable readership. Even then, I may still decide my writing energies are put to better use in updating my blog. I feel no obligations to simply offer up comments on my posts to the public at large: the public at large includes every spam-bot, bloviating nutcase, axe-grinding partisan, and egomaniac troll with a keyboard. So, there it is.


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Justice For The Messenger

Gary Webb, American News Media, and the War on Drugs

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