subnormal magazine was the punk rock magazine from way back when…when being a liberal and radical meant QUESTIONING AUTHORITY–not being the lap dog for authority. When being cool meant being smarter and having a BETTER argument than the enemy based on facts–not whining like a baby to get someone fired or censored because their words hurt their freaking feelings.
Image of mural art by: Muzammil, source: WikiMedia
We are NOT your safe space….
punks NOT dead
One Dove Star Dot Allison Returns with Exquisite Solo Record
Dot Allison releases Heart-Shaped Scars, available July 30th on SA Recordings. Upon the first few seconds of hearing Dot, I was happily stunned. Her voice is shockingly exquisite; a breathy, powerful whisper-like melody reminiscent of Tori Amos and Joni Mitchell. I will definitely be coming back to explore her work more fully, and I suggest you do as well.
The Failure of Mainstream American Media
By Bruce Edwin
Throughout time, new technologies have changed the way we give and receive communication. With the advent of radio, and later film and television, the propensity to be influenced by “mass media” has exponentially grown. With the advent of the internet and now “smart phones,” the ability for the individual to be consumed with, persuaded by, and unknowingly or covertly influenced by mass media is at an all-time high. Yet, during the onset of Covid19 beginning a little over a year ago back in late 2019 and predominantly in 2020, we have shockingly seen an American media we once knew to have political bias and agendas go from the current status quo of covert bias to overt propaganda and censorship. In this brief essay, we will discuss the most apparent nature of those facts and some of the impetus behind this dangerous new direction in mainstream American media. More importantly, we will discuss what we can do about it. For discovering we have a problem is only the first step. The second step is solving it.
As suggested in Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky’s 1988 book “Manufacturing Consent,” mass communication largely operates within a propaganda model fueled by various means, of which I will here speculate upon from a current, modern perspective.
According to “Business Insider” and “Fortune” magazine several years ago, just six corporations today control 90% of the news that Americans consume, headed by 15 billionaires. Today, 100% of American mainstream media is controlled to some degree by The The United Nations, of whom China is their Security Council President.
The World Health Organization for example–now dictating Americans freedoms or rather lack thereof through “forced” posts on private social media accounts of all U.S. citizens–is under the umbrella of the U.N.
Fact Checking In Decline
Since the ever-increasing popularity of the internet, with news stations and newspapers now online in addition to their other platforms, fact-checking has declined. This is largely the result not of incompetency, but more-so the result of greed.
Rush For Speed with Internet Makes Work Sloppy
The unbridled urge for one news outlet to get the “scoop” faster than their competitor, or if they fail to originate the story, then the urge to get it at least right after their competitor—whether that story is fact checked or not–is the new impetus for online media, which has replaced professional standards that formerly were upheld. Speed of publication seems senior to accuracy, with many news outlets. Thus, their failure to deliberately fact-check, results in them putting out a story that falls below the professional standards of journalism they know to be true; a story they never fact-checked. Never mind that countless typographical errors can be found on a regular basis in any mainstream media’s online work. The real problem is an “error of ideas.”
When ideas are misrepresented, distorted, or put across as true when they are not; lies result, and a culture is harmed.
Calling Opinions Facts
The second failure of today’s journalism is their propensity to posit stories as being true, when in fact they are merely opinion. And that is an extremely dangerous thing, when a false narrative or false story propagated or reinforced by media is put across to society as true.
Conversely, many media and news outlets aim to discredit truths and facts as being “false,” “fake,” or propaganda,” when they are not. In actuality, the words they use to describe their opponent is the very thing that they themselves are guilty of.
Whereas such as story may be a great story on the opinion page, large percentages of the news outlet’s content are now opinion, without stating they are. As such, viewers and readers are left to wrongly conclude that the story is a fact, when in actuality, it is not necessarily.
And while some readers or viewers are sophisticated enough to know when they are being lied to by media, many are not. One can often hear well intentioned, fairly educated people posit their argument of why they are “right” based on an article or news story they saw on their favorite news program or publication. These often well–intentioned persons abandon reason, investigative research, and fact checking what they read themselves, and blindly “assume” that their preferred source of news is telling them the truth. In reality, we can no longer safely assume that the media is accurate.
Facts are checked against multiple credible, un-biased sources until one can unequivocally state and know that it is fact. Facts are tested. Facts are true and don’t change. They are proven. President Kennedy was shot and killed. Fact. Why? Millions saw it on live TV. They were not “crisis actors.” Yet countless times in today’s so called “news,” mainstream media tells us things that are not true, that are true. Or they tell us things that are a lie, that are fact. Or—they simply tell us that one is bad, or a “conspiracy theorist” if one attempts to question what they are being told. The very nature of a free society is the freedom to question what we are told. Without that freedom of individual inquiry, democracy and freedom are dead.
Glenn Greenwald, former publisher of the scholarly liberal online publication “The Intercept,” stated this week in his blog, “(…) the prevailing mentality in left-liberal politics is that even grave life-destroying accusations are to be treated as true without the need for any evidence.” Referencing that trend that began with the “Me Too” movement, Greenwald–who incidentally is a minority as a gay man–continues; “They casually and with apparent glee ruin people’s reputations and lives without batting an eye the second someone utters an allegation of sexual misconduct. ” He continues, “And one is required to mindlessly accept such accusations as truth — never ask for evidence if it is true — if one wishes to remain in good standing in those circles and to avoid being smeared oneself as an apologist for sexual misconduct.” Further, we see the same media mindset applied not only to allegations of sexual misconduct, but to allegations motivated by political rivalry, whether one is in the political arena or not.
(note: This in no means references factual, court proven cases of criminals such as Harvey Weinstein or Bill Cosby, and in no way demeans the important and factual cases that have gained attention thanks to the Me Too movement).
Indeed, we are ALL in the political arena today, whether we like it or not. And that political arena is a mud filled slop house of lies, trickery, and treachery, where truth is buried, and evil chicanery reigns supreme.
Bias Due to Advertising
The third problem in todays’ media, is media letting corporate or political interest groups or entities persuade themselves to soften, change, censor, or release a biased story. If you own a news outlet, and an advertiser offers to give you a million dollars to advertise their product, you happily may take the money. Then one day may come along hundreds or even thousands of people who claim they have been injured by that very product. But let’s say you already spent half the money, and really want the rest of the money. What do you do? If you are the mainstream media, you would generally tend to ignore the stories that came to you of those injured persons, at the peril of not only those very victims harmed by the product, but of future, potential victims that the product may harm who may see it from your ad. This is not only against the professional standards of journalism, but also reckless and immoral.
And yet, this is exactly what happens with regards to the pharmaceutical industry, and why many throughout the world are understandably concerned about potential adverse effects of vaccines, when particularly:
A, Major pharmaceutical manufactures have a less than ethical history in terms of dealing with their consumers and communicating risks of their products usage to their consumers, and
B, The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 (NCVIA) and its subsequent reinforcement by Supreme Court Justice Scalia argued in 2010, shamefully deciding in 2011 that vaccine makers are essentially “above the law,” and cannot be sued.
Additionally, when a media outlet is owned by one person or a corporate group whose most powerful member(s) supports one side of a story, but not another, they may literally set the agenda for the news outlet, and literally forbid anything that goes against the narrative they believe in or support. Major news outlets have had phone calls “leaked” in which their top CEO tell their newsrooms how to attack one person or side of a story, and to ignore another side. Another news organization just had a leaked phone call in which one of their top producers admitted that the agenda of the organization was to defeat a politician and do whatever necessary to make that happen. This is not so much journalism, as it is propaganda.
Mainstream Media as a Propaganda Weapon
The other overt act of propaganda perpetrated by media is when it is consensually or at times unknowingly infiltrated by members of foreign political or intelligence agents, or U.S. political or intelligence agencies. Not only has this happened before, but it is happening right now. The “leak” of internationally based Chinese Communist Party (CCP) members, as reported in the Daily Mail (December 12, 2020) among other newspapers, indicates how Chinese Communist leaders have infiltrated nearly every top echelon of American power as well as much of mainstream American media. This is shocking, and dangerous to this country and any free society. Naturally, the infiltrated groups generally do not admit such a thing, and do not report on it. If they do, it’s a tiny item that passes into the history of endless articles and clips. When instead, this should be among the top news every day in American media, until the communist infiltrated persons are defeated. Meanwhile, mainstream media reports the new trend of what they like to label as “conspiracy theorists” who demonstrate “racism” by being “against China.”
And so, mainstream media and the press, has largely over the years taken a justifiable blow to their image. Their reputations are for many–shot. They are no longer trusted by close to or even more than half of all Americans. And it is their own fault.
To attempt to alleviate or handle this problem, instead of doing the right thing and getting honest and ethical in their news reporting, they take the lower moral ground. They blame the public. More particularly, they blame the segment of the public that calls them out on their failures and untrustworthiness, attacking “their” credibility, and labeling them with everything from political smears to conspiracy theorists, to uneducated, or even mentally ill.
Concurrently, media reinforces the supremacist view they seek to indoctrinate into their readers, listeners and viewers, that “they,” the purveyors of the alleged “factual” media are good, “normal,” and right, while their alleged “enemy” (those who they disagree with) are bad.
Mainstream Media As Enemies of Freedom and Liberty
Some mainstream news outlets have disgustingly called for the “cancelling” and “de-platforming” of opinion leader bloggers and alternative news or opinion sites who they feel ideologically threatened by. And they have succeeded in these morally bankrupt moves. These condemnable actions by certain news outlets reveal their true colors. They do not support the free flow of ideas, freedom of speech, or a free nation. They are antithetical to everything that a free America or free country stands for. Instead, they care only about power and about the perpetuation of the “myth” that they are right, good, democratic, and noble in their propaganda. And let’s face it—when one media outlet attacks the free speech of another less powerful outlet, demanding their censorship, they are no longer journalists or reporters, they are indeed propagandists.
When two or more people secretly collude to do something nefarious against another, that is called a conspiracy. When it’s theoretical, and not proven, then it is a conspiracy theory. When the conspiracy is factual, and proven, it is no longer theoretical, it is a conspiracy of fact. Today, mainstream media, new-left politicians, and their followers malign anyone who opposes them or their beliefs by labeling them as conspiracy theorist, or similar. In actuality, many so-called conspiracy theories are not theories at all, they are fact. And if they actually are theories, then they are not necessarily false, they are just not yet proven to be true. Yet the tyrants against freedom and freedom of thought know that most Americans are unfortunately careless or lazy when it comes to knowing the basic factual definitions of words. To call someone a conspiracy theorist in reality, does not even make sense when used in the context that the tyrants use it. A conspiracy theorist technically is simply just a person who reads and / or hears about the conspiracy of events that are theoretical, and that could actually be true, and relays that information in some manner, suggesting its consideration.
In reality, most mainstream media have become theorists, and not fact finders. That is, they engage in the reporting of things that could be true, but that they have not yet proven to be true. They often also cross the line, and themselves create theories, positing them as true, when they are not. This is of course, a conspiracy against the American public. As such, the majority of mainstream media are the actual conspirators pushing conspiracy against the public.
Take for example, the alleged “weapons of mass destruction” that the mainstream media told us Saddam Hussein had, and was going to use against us in the United States, as was the false narrative dictated by the Bush Administration at that time around 2002. As Noam Chomsky reminds us in “Hegemony or Survival: America’s Quest for Global Domination,” Bush and the mainstream media further perpetuated the lie that Saddam was responsible for the 9-11 attack and was “planning others.” (pg3). More lies.
After weapons inspectors found no so-called weapons of mass destruction, the propaganda campaign had yet been carried out so successfully by the George Bush / Tony Blair alliance in consort with the mainstream media propaganda machine, that they had the political power to invade Iraq, kill scores of innocent women, men, and children, and kill Saddam Hussein anyway.
J.D. Maddox, a national security consultant and an adjunct professor at George Mason University, who led intelligence and national security activities in the Army, Homeland Security, and CIA among more, states in the January 9th, 2020 issue of The New York Times Magazine;
“The time-tested tropes of war for freedom and war of liberation had been used masterfully, and had been enabled by false claims of the Hussein regime’s involvement with Al Qaeda. We were fighting in a fantasy and our leaders knew it, even while we were there, yet we persisted.” Mr. Maddox added, “I was repulsed by the idea that we could have been so easily manipulated.”
This several part essay will be continued with its next segment here May 10, 2021.
Bruce Edwin is founding publisher of The Hollywood Sentinel, CEO of Starpower Management, and screenwriter and producer with Bruce Edwin Productions. Bruce’s work has been published worldwide, and he has interviewed countless rock stars, movie stars, and intellectual leaders. An environmental activist, vegetarian, and human rights activist since he was a teenager, today Bruce is an avid mountain hiker, martial arts enthusiast, and vegan.
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