How The News Makes You Stupid
October 2, 2012 by Sam Rolley
Don’t trust anything the mainstream media tell you.
This appears to be the takeaway message from a handful of events which serve to remind the American public that the corporate-controlled mainstream media apparatus operates only to propagandize the many to the benefit of the few.
First, there are the remarks delivered by former Democratic pollster Pat Caddell at a recent Accuracy in Media conference as he discussed the embarrassing media fumbling of reporting on the deadly attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. Caddell noted that the original intent of the 1st Amendment was protecting the public from tyrannical “organized governmental power,” a purpose which American news media have long since abandoned.
“We’ve had nine days of lies over what happened because they can’t dare say it’s a terrorist attack, and the press won’t push this,” said Caddell over the weekend. “Yesterday there was not a single piece in The New York Times over the question of Libya. Twenty American embassies, yesterday, are under attack. None of that is on the national news. None of it is being pressed in the papers.”
In summary, Caddell added that it is one thing for news media to be biased but, “It is another thing to specifically decide that you will not tell the American people information they have a right to know.”
Indeed, the media floundered in reporting on the situation that unraveled in Libya where American-backed terrorists that were used as pawns (just as American-backed terrorists have always been used in Mideast conflict) to elicit regime change in the Nation turned on the United States in a violent terrorist attack against the embassy. To report what is actually going on, rather than the unbelievable narrative about the uprisings being sparked by a silly 12-minute YouTube video, would be to reveal to mass audiences that U.S. foreign policy in the region is a total failure and manufactured as such in order to ensure a continual profit flow for the military-industrial complex.
Next is the mainstream media tendency to portray President Barack Obama as whoever they believe the American public wants him to be. Months ago, in a piece that portrays the President a decider who meticulously selects targets from a list of top terrorist The New York Times proclaimed:
Mr. Obama is the liberal law professor who campaigned against the Iraq war and torture, and then insisted on approving every new name on an expanding “kill list,” poring over terrorist suspects’ biographies on what one official calls the macabre “baseball cards” of an unconventional war. When a rare opportunity for a drone strike at a top terrorist arises — but his family is with him — it is the president who has reserved to himself the final moral calculation.
…When he applies his lawyering skills to counterterrorism, it is usually to enable, not constrain, his ferocious campaign against Al Qaeda — even when it comes to killing an American cleric in Yemen, a decision that Mr. Obama told colleagues was “an easy one.”
A new report that was released last week makes the earlier Times story more significant, despite the fact that much of mainstream media have been largely mum on its findings. The report from NYU School of Law and Stanford University Law School details what life is like in Pakistan, where Obama most likes to target his drone strikes.
The report begins:
In the United States, the dominant narrative about the use of drones in Pakistan is of a surgically precise and effective tool that makes the US safer by enabling “targeted killing” of terrorists, with minimal downsides or collateral impacts.
This narrative is false.
Following nine months of intensive research—including two investigations in Pakistan, more than 130 interviews with victims, witnesses, and experts, and review of thousands of pages of documentation and media reporting—this report presents evidence of the damaging and counterproductive effects of current US drone strike policies. Based on extensive interviews with Pakistanis living in the regions directly affected, as well as humanitarian and medical workers, this report provides new and firsthand testimony about the negative impacts US policies are having on the civilians living under drones.
The report goes on to describe U.S. government terrorism against the Pakistani people that is nothing like what The New York Times described in its article about Obama’s calm-and-collected target killing.
Another reason to turn off your network news and gather information from alternative sources is the story of CNN’s firing of a three-time Emmy award-winning investigative journalist who exposed how mainstream media routinely take bribe money to run propaganda content.
Journalist Amber Lyon was fired from CNN after she refused to stop reporting on her firsthand experience of the systematic torture and murder of peaceful protesters by the American-backed government of Bahrain. After showing only a few of the reports Lyon had created, CNN pulled the journalist’s Bahrain coverage from both its domestic and international networks.
You can watch a detailed interview conducted (somewhat ironically given mainstream media’s disdain for him) by veteran alternative-media innovator Alex Jones below: