Dr. Larry Burriss

This week December 7th is the 70 anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. Many people recall hearing James Daley make the news announcement about the attack, and today that tape is standard fare in history and broadcasting classes.

But what is also interesting is the effect the attack had on American media.

MURFREESBORO, Tenn.  --  I don’t know how many times we’ve said it, but let’s try again: the only thing worse than bad publicity is trying to cover up bad publicity. No, wait, there is something worse: being found out trying to cover up good publicity.

MTSU

MURFREESBORO, Tenn.  --  Ever since the early days of broadcasting, nearly 100 years ago, the law has had an almost impossible time trying to keep up with technology. Every time legislators think they have the technology figured out, a new wrinkle comes along that changes all of the rules.

Now Congress is trying to figure out how to prevent cyber-theft of movies, songs and consumer goods, which is a good thing, but in the process may end up shutting down innumerable legitimate web sites, particularly social media and user-generated content.

It’s hard to believe, but the Watergate break-in was nearly 40 years ago, but somehow it has become the scandal that keeps on giving.

Last week the National Archives and the Nixon Presidential Library unsealed 26 files that include secret transcripts from former president Richard Nixon’s grand jury testimony. The documents are important because they represent the only time Nixon was legally required to talk honestly about the scandal that brought down his presidency.

Dr. Larry Burriss

Murfreesboro, Tenn It’s been said that all politics is local, meaning the most important political decisions are really made at the local level, not the state and national. And if that’s true, then it follows that the most important examples of political and public information are also local.

So, let’s take a quick look at who can look at local public records, and what records are available to the local public.

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