Lewis opens Amos Fortune Forum series

Talk on decline of America’s moral integrity, Friday

This Friday, July 11, the Amos Fortune Forum opens its 2014 season at the Jaffrey Center Meetinghouse with a talk by Charles Lewis on “The Future of Truth and the Decline of America’s Moral Integrity.”

Charles Lewis speaks of how facts are and must be the coin of the realm in a democracy where government “of the people, by the people, and for the people,” in Abraham Lincoln’s words, requires an informed citizenry. But Lewis asks how can “self-governance” work in a representative democracy if citizens don’t actually know the unvarnished truth? He reports that professional journalists are now outnumbered four-to-one by public relations personnel and that “the people” are being repeatedly lied to by government, by various corporations, and by other organizations. He concludes that citizens of this republic hardly ever have access to “real-time truth” about the most egregious abuses of power.

Lewis has been a national investigative journalist for more than 30 years. A former producer for ABC News and CBS News “60 Minutes,” he founded the award-winning Center for Public Integrity and its International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, the first global network of premier investigative reporters to develop and publish online multimedia exposes across borders.

About the new book by Charles Lewis, “935 Lies: The Future of Truth and the Decline of America’s Moral Integrity,” veteran muckraker Seymour Hersh says, “If you like straight talk, unvarnished history, and are not interested in being politically correct, this is the book for you.”

Former Washington Post executive editor Leonard Downie says the author “takes no prisoners in a deeply researched exploration of outrageous lying to the public and too-often ineffectual commercial news media by the American government, politicians and corporations.”

He is the co-author of five Center books including “The Buying of the President” (1996), “The Buying of the Congress” (1998), “The Buying of the President” (2000), “The Cheating of America” (2001), and “The Buying of the President” (2004), a New York Times bestseller.

He was awarded a prestigious MacArthur Fellowship in 1998, and in 2004, he was given the PEN USA First Amendment award. He is a professor and founding executive editor of the Investigative Reporting Workshop at the American University School of Communication in Washington, D.C.

The Amos Fortune Forum series is free to attend but donations are appreciated. The talks begin promptly at 8 p.m. with a reception following. For more information, visit www.amosfortune.com.

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