Tom Cruise reunites with his Edge of Tomorrow director, Doug Liman (The Bourne Identity, Mr. and Mrs. Smith), in this international escapade based on the outrageous (and real) exploits of a hustler and pilot unexpectedly recruited by the CIA to run one of the biggest covert operations in U.S. history.
Based on a true story, American Made co-stars Domhnall Gleeson, Sarah Wright, E. Roger Mitchell, Jesse Plemons, Lola Kirke, Alejandro Edda, Benito Martinez, Caleb Landry Jones and Jayma Mays.
His story — which brims with conspiracy theories that range from him having dealings with a pre-assassination Lee Harvey Oswald to his functioning as a teenage gunrunner — inspired the movie “American Made,” out Friday. Tom Cruise plays the smuggler with the cocky swagger that endeared Seal to some — and might have heralded his undoing.
“He bragged to other pilots about having earned millions,” “American Made” screenwriter Gary Spinelli told The Post. “I don’t think he helped himself by rubbing people’s noses in it.”
Del Hahn — a former FBI agent who tracked Seal, interrogated him and later wrote about the man in the 2016 book “Smuggler’s End” (Pelican Publishing) — remembered what Seal did upon recognizing an FBI surveillance plane that had been following him. “He ran out onto his driveway and started shaking a towel at us,” Hahn said. The move cheekily signaled the law enforcers that they had been made.
From 1975 until the early 1980s, Seal became one of the narco-world’s go-to smugglers. He was honest, adept and innovative. Plus he didn’t do drugs or drink. By all indications, Seal was in it for adventure and challenge — all of which got amped up in 1984, when he became what NBC News called “one of the most daring and important government operatives.”
Born Adler Berriman Seal, the future smuggler grew up in Baton Rouge, La. Naturally drawn to aviation, he hung out at the local airport and secured a student pilot’s license at age 15. As a teenager, according to Spinelli, Seal impressed a girl by landing a plane on the 50-yard line of their high school’s football field before asking her out on a date. He dropped out of college, married his first wife in 1963 and got hired by TWA in ’67. The initial marriage ended in divorce; he married two more times and fathered four children.
Seal’s transformation to criminal flyboy began in 1972, after the then-33-year-old command pilot went on medical leave from TWA due to a shoulder injury.
During a time when pilots at loose ends were a rarity, a friend of Seal’s by the name of Joe Mazzuka (who, in turn, was acquainted with mob-tied Murray Kessler) recruited the injured Seal to fly explosives to Cuba. Seal justified his actions to himself by believing he was delivering them to forces plotting the overthrow of Fidel Castro. The plan, however, turned out to be a sting operation, aimed at an accomplice. Seal, Mazzuka and six others were busted. But when it came time for the trial, in 1974, key prosecution witnesses were unavailable and the judge declared a mistrial.
Mary Beth Brangan and Jim Heddle in conversation with Peter B Collins on their forthcoming docu-series SHUTDOWN (with preview clip); nuclear issues; and on the attempted power grab by Telecoms with dangerous 5G networks that threaten public safety, health, the environment and local control.
Josh Sigurdson talks with author and economic analyst John Sneisen about the recent money laundering controversy out of Denmark as CEO of Danske Bank Thomas F. Borgen resigns (with abundant pay). Most notably is the excuses made following this scandal.
Denmark now wishes to ban the 500 Euro note as some form of risk mitigator. Of course that’s just a bad excuse, as we’ve seen in countless other countries where governments wait with baited breath for a controversy to elapse in order to eliminate cash in circulation as we see a steady march towards a centrally planned cashless society take place on a global scale.
A parliamentary majority is ready to push this proposal through, ending a person’s ability to make payments with 500 Euro notes. So basically their reasoning is that people might avoid getting their money stolen by the government and that people may fund certain groups the government knows a thing or two about funding… This is all in order to push forward the incremental frog boil of the cashless society world wide. Less cash, less privacy.
The state would love the ability to shut down payments like China’s social credit system. They would love to mitigate runs on the bank. They would love to succeed in bail-ins. The opportunities are endless for the state and banking system in a centrally planned, legal tender cashless society, but the masses will likely not enjoy their vast dependency after tried and true. Individuals must decentralize and break free from this clear script playing out in front of our eyes. This will not end well if people do not prepare well. Stay tuned for more from WAM as we continue to follow this story!
All of life on Earth is radioactive by now and it only took about 70 years. This is a planetary Death Sentence for all. Everyone is included. There is no way out. There is nothing we can do to stop it. The Rad will take us all out. Yeah, that includes all of us; plus the life driving around in our air, lakes, rivers and oceans. The Rad also nails the long lived remnants of the dinosaurs; y’know, the birds. They don’t have a prayer. All of us are included; none are left out. That is reality, anything else is just wishful thinking or a purposeful lie. The amount of Rad in the air now dooms Humanity to a relatively quick extinction. Done in by our own war toys, how moronic is that?! I can’t say it any plainer than that.”
Updated Sept. 22, 2018: Fukushima Equals 17,718.15 Hiroshima Bombs Today, More Tomorrow; There is No Place On Earth to Escape the Rad: The 3 melted-through cores of the destroyed reactors, now melted together into a single “corium” totaling over 600 tons, at Fukushima daily release the radioactive equivalent of 6.45 Hiroshima bombs directly into the atmosphere and the Pacific Ocean. As of Sept. 22, 2018 – 2,747 days since the disaster began – this equals the detonation of 17,718.15 Hiroshima atomic bombs and it is still going strong, with no end in sight, considering that the half-life of uranium-238 is about 4.47 billion years and that of uranium-235 is 704 million years. There is no technology on this planet to deal with this situation. Any “news” they allow you to see about “repairing” the damage is a public relations LIE, and they know it. Now you do, too.There are only 336 cities on Earth with more than one million people. That is the equivalent of 52.73 Hiroshima atomic bombs apiece. Now add a minimum of 600 tons per day of highly radioactive ground and “coolant” water flowing directly into the Pacific Ocean, as it has for the last 2,747 days. This coolant water is not cooling down the reactor cores, since they’ve melted through already. What they are cooling is the many thousands of fuel rods stored in the ruined cooling pools directly above the now-empty reactor core chambers. If those rods are not cooled they will ignite and burn – a total catastrophe in itself.
You have an absolute right to be fully aware of this information, which is intended to inform, not frighten, you, though a full understanding of this situation is terrifying. Do your own research, consider and see with your own eyes the many mass Pacific die-off videos on YouTube. Verify all the information, and, as always, draw your own informed conclusions as to the consequences.On a personal note, in all sincerity, I hate having to do this report every week, but “they” will never, ever tell you the truth, and besides Bob Nichols site and here, there’s nowhere else I’m aware of that will tell you the truth about Fukushima. Considering the ultimate consequences, this is something you must know and be aware of, and I have no choice than to do so. But I’m truly sorry for presenting such horrifyingly truthful news. God help us all… – CP
“Your Radiation This Week, Sept. 22, 2018″
by Bob Nichols
“First thing, grasp the difficult concept that this is an ELE or Extinction Level Event. The deadly meltdown and dispersion of radioactive fuel throughout the world is on-going to this day. There is no escaping our fate, there are no solutions. No one is exempt. The radioactive particles are all over the world now. The Rad lethality will continue to increase because that is what Rad lethality does. The simple reason is some of the uranium decays to plutonium. When that happens the Rad count increases. Once set free, the change cannot be altered or stopped by anyone or anything. The Rad is the ultimate power and its mission is to kill You.
Lethality: There are 1,946 radioactive isotopes according to the Oak Ridge Nuclear Weapons Lab. In the Earth’s atmosphere all are produced by nuclear weapons and nuclear power plants. There are no other sources. Lethality is the power to kill and injure. It exists and is measured by humans in deaths and in calculations. The perfectly odd thing about radiation is the Lethality goes up while the radioactivity goes down. That has killed many a person who only counted the radioactivity. This is perfectly logical when you recognize radioactive Isotopes change from one Isotope to another for billions of years. The Isotope Uranium changes to Plutonium and many others. Plutonium is the ultimate killing machine, so bad that the Medical Director of the Livermore Nuclear Weapons Lab, Dr. John Gofman, said “Plutonium 239 is the most dangerous substance in the universe.”“I added a new measurement that will help residents understand the Rad. The Rad is with us all 24/7 constantly. It never goes away. It is better to know what the Rad level is than to not know. Be prepared for a shock, these Year to Date totals are really big radiation numbers. Colorado Springs, Colorado is number one in the US right now having endured 46,136,977 Gamma CPM, or Counts per Minute, since January 1, 2017.” This is a Bad situation for all exposed to the Rad. Now included all cities above 12,000,000 CPM Year to Date [YTD] of deadly Gamma Radiation and its unpublished radioactive kin. A Count is One Radioactive Decay.
The United States is a very radioactive country. Records of Total Gamma Radiation are easily accessible with a computer at RadNet, a directorate of the EPA. RadNet simply presents the data. It is up to you to decide how much radiation is too much and what to do about it. Good luck on your efforts. As they say, “It’s complicated.”
I won’t try to kid you with good news lies and made up “facts.” Bottom-line, this is way too much radiation for humans to take. I despise the people-like animals responsible for this world wide calamity. I will continue the report as long as I am able. Continue to read and share as long as you are able. I will measure and characterize our shared demise to the best of my ability.”
“Aboard the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan, 100 miles offshore of Fukushima: ”During that March 13, 2011 phone call, Cleveland wrote, Troy Mueller – the deputy administrator for naval reactors at the US Department of Energy – said the radiation was the equivalent of “about 30 times what you would detect just on a normal air sample out at sea.” “So it’s much greater than what we had thought,” Mueller reportedly warned other American officials after taking samples on the Reagan. “We didn’t think we would detect anything at 100 miles.” After Mueller made that remark, according to Cleveland’s transcript, Deputy Secretary of Energy Daniel Poneman asked him if those levels were “significantly higher than anything you would have expected.” He responded yes. When Poneman later asked Mueller, “How do the levels detected compare with what is permissible?” Mueller said those on the scene could suffer irreversible harm from the radiation within hours. “If it were a member of the general public, it would take- well, it would take about 10 hours to reach a limit,” he said. At that point, Mueller added, “It’s a thyroid dose issue.” If people are exposed to levels beyond the Protective Action Guideline threshold released by the Energy Department, Cleveland acknowledged in his report, radiation could have ravaged their thyroid glands.”
“German Analysis of Certain Isotopes after Meltdown: Hold on to your hat. In 1992 Germany calculated that in reactor meltdowns like Fukushima Daiichi the radioactive isotope Strontium 90 would aggressively poison the environment for 109.2 years and then decline slowly over the next 273 years. Of course, we will ALL be long dead by then. Other deadly Rad isotopes put Strontium 90’s generous life span to shame. The German study is here for those brave enough to tackle it.
“Here is what was known 75 days after reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Reactor Plant started a disastrous and lethal nuclear meltdown on March 11, 2011:• March 11, 14:46, a One Million Kiloton Earthquake measuring 9.0 on the Richter Scale hammered Japan off-shore near the six Japanese reactors. The reactors attempted to shut down automatically when electronic sensors detected the earthquake. The huge earthquake dropped the reactors three feet, moved Japan 8 inches to the West and altered the tilt of the Axis of planet Earth.
• March 11, about 15:30, the giant Earthquake caused a tsunami up to 30 meters (98.4 Ft) high washed away all the fuel tanks for the reactors Emergency Generators and all the reactors’ outside electrical feeds. This was the Death Blow to the reactors. The Fukushima Daiichi reactors were dead in the water and their fate sealed. Without an external source of electricity for the water pumps and hot reactors, they are just so much radioactive scrap iron – good for nothing. The internal temperature of the reactors started climbing immediately.
• March 11, about 18:00, only two and a half hours later, multiple reactor cores started melting down as the reactors internal temperatures skyrocketed to the melting point of uranium and beyond – a measured 1,718 Deg C (3,124.4 Deg F) past the melting point. Uranium melts at 1,132.2 Deg C (2,069.9 Deg F.) The internal reactor temperatures reached at least 2,850 Deg C, (5,162 Deg F.) The millions of 1 mm Uranium fuel pellets in the reactors and in the core pools had no defense at all without the powerful water pumps and millions of gallons of cooling water against those temperatures.
The Uranium pellets simply melted forming a white hot lava-like radioactive uranium isotope blob that then burned through the high temperature steel around the graphite seals of the General Electric Mark 1 Reactor Control Rods at the bottom of the American submarine-based reactor design of US Navy Admiral Hyman Rickover, now deceased. (General Electric copied the US Government financed Navy nuclear reactor design for many commercial nuclear reactors.) The radioactive blobs trickled together to form a huge, highly radioactive, burning lava blob like that of Chernobyl, called a “corium”.
• The corium is releasing as much as a TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power Company) measured 10 Quadrillion (10,000 Trillion Bq) radioactive counts per second of deadly radioactive smoke particles into the Earth’s atmosphere. As of May, 2011, the invisible, killing radioactive smoke is already all over the Northern Hemisphere and everyone in it – each and every one – is radiologically contaminated. Note that the lethality of radioactive reactor cores goes up the first 250,000 years they are out of the reactor – not down.
• This much is known. All radioactive exposures are cumulative for each human, animal and plant. What’s more, mutated genetic codes are passed on to offspring forever. This means all Japanese and all Northern Hemisphere inhabitants are suffering internal radioactive contamination from Fukushima Daiichi reactors already.”
Fukushima Equals 3,000 Billion Lethal Doses:
Dr Paolo Scampa, a widely know EU Physicist, single handedly popularized the easily understood Lethal Doses concept. “Lethal Doses” is a world wide, well understood idea that strips Physics bare and offers a brilliant, understandable explanation for all the physics gobbledygook Intelligence agencies and their respective governments use to disguise the brutal truths of the Fukushima Daiichi Disaster. Three thousand billion (3,000,000,000,000) (3 Trillion) Lethal Doses of Radiation means there are 429 Lethal Doses chasing each and every one of us on the planet, to put it in a nutshell.”
Widely acclaimed as a landmark picture, Deliverance is noted for a music scene near the beginning, with one of the city men playing “Dueling Banjos” on guitar with a banjo-strumming country boy, that sets the tone for what lies ahead, a trip into unknown and potentially dangerous wilderness; and for its visceral and notorious male rape scene. – In 2008, Deliverance was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.”
The Cahulawassee River valley in Northern Georgia is one of the last natural pristine areas of the state, which will soon change with the imminent building of a dam on the river, which in turn will flood much of the surrounding land. As such, four Atlanta city slickers, alpha male Lewis Medlock, generally even-keeled Ed Gentry, slightly condescending Bobby Trippe, and wide-eyed Drew Ballinger, decide to take a multi-day canoe trip on the river, with only Lewis and Ed having experience in outdoor life. They know going in that the area is ethno-culturally homogeneous and isolated, but don’t understand the full extent of such until they arrive and see what they believe is the result of generations of inbreeding. Their relatively peaceful trip takes a turn for the worse when half way through they encounter a couple of hillbilly moonshiners. That encounter not only makes the four battle their way out of the valley intact and alive, but threatens the relationships of the four as they do.
Several people have been credited with the phrase “squeal like a pig”, the now-famous line spoken during the graphic male rape scene. Ned Beatty said he thought of it while he and actor McKinney (who played Beatty’s rapist) were improvising the scene. James Dickey’s son, Christopher Dickey, wrote in his memoir about the film production, Summer of Deliverance, that because Boorman had rewritten so much dialogue for the scene one of the crewmen suggested that Beatty’s character should just “squeal like a pig”. Boorman himself, however, in a DVD commentary he made for the film said the line was used because the studio wanted the male rape scene to be filmed in two ways: one for cinematic release and one that would be acceptable for television. As Boorman did not want to do that, he decided that the phrase “squeal like a pig”, suggested by Rabun County liaison Frank Rickman, was a good replacement for the original dialogue in the script.
The film’s soundtrack brought new attention to the musical work “Dueling Banjos,” which had been recorded numerous times since 1955. Only Eric Weissberg and Steve Mandel were originally credited for the piece. The songwriter and producer Arthur “Guitar Boogie” Smith, who had written the original piece, “Feudin’ Banjos” (1955), and recorded it with five-string banjo player Don Reno, filed a lawsuit for songwriting credit and a percentage of royalties. He was awarded both in a landmark copyright infringement case.
Following the film, tourism increased to Rabun County by the tens of thousands. By 2012, tourism was the largest source of revenue in the county. Jon Voight’s stunt double for this film, Claude Terry, later purchased equipment used in the movie from Warner Brothers. He founded what is now the oldest whitewater rafting adventure company on the Chattooga River, Southeastern Expeditions. By 2012 rafting had developed as a $20 million industry in the region.
Also in 2012, producer Cory Welles and director Kevin Walker decided to make the documentary, The Deliverance of Rabun County, to explore the effects of the film on people in the county. They heard a wide range of opinions, particularly resentment at how the country people were portrayed. Others were pragmatic and looked at the benefits of increased tourism and related businesses.
“Few people know of Stanislav Petrov… yet hundreds of millions of people are alive because of him.”
The Man Who Saved the World (Starring: Walter Cronkite, Robert De Niro, Matt Damon and Kevin Costner) tells the gripping true story of Stanislav Petrov – a man who single-handedly averted a fullscale NUCLEAR WORLD WAR, but now struggles to get his life back on track… before it is too late.
An epic and grand Cold War thriller that sends shivers down your spine and shows us just how close we came to Apocalypse … and it’s not over yet! With a NEW COLD WAR rising and thousands of nuclear weapons on hair-trigger alert, we still live under the same catastrophic danger that Stanislav faced back then.
Philadelphia, PA – The city that has gained a reputation for the egregious civil asset forfeiture practices committed by its police department, will now be forced to dismantle the program altogether, as a result of a lawsuit filed by a family who had their home seized by police after their son was accused of a minor drug crime.
Residents who have been harmed by the Philadelphia Police department’s civil asset forfeiture practices could also receive part of $3 million in compensation. Markela and Chris Sourovelis initially filed a lawsuit in 2014 after their son was caught trying to sell $40 in heroin on the street.
The parents complied with the judge and took their son to a court-ordered rehabilitation treatment. But when they returned home, they found that police had locked them out of their house.
The Sourovelis family’s home was seized by police even though there was no evidence that the parents had any knowledge of their son’s attempt to sell drugs, and there was no evidence that the parents or any other family members had engaged in any kind of drug-related activity deemed “illegal” by the state.
The story received significant media attention as the country was introduced to the horror many Philadelphia residents face, and the district attorney eventually dropped the case against the family. In a statement from December 2014, Chris Sourovelis said he was relieved by the verdict, but was committed to continuing the fight to ensure that other residents were not subjected to the same nightmare.
“After months of uncertainty, my family can finally rest easy knowing that our home is our home again,”Sourovelis said. “I’ve lived in Philadelphia for over 30 years. I never thought it was possible for the police to just show up at my doorstep without notice and take my house when I’ve done nothing wrong. But that’s exactly what happened to me and my family—and we’re not alone. That’s why we’re going to keep fighting for everyone still trapped in Philadelphia’s civil forfeiture nightmare.”
Sourovelis worked with the Institute of Justice to file a new lawsuit a class action lawsuit, which alleged that the city was seizing 300 to 500 homes each year, violating residents’ constitutional rights and illegally creating a profit incentive because the revenue generated by the program was going straight to local police and district attorneys.
To say that the city has a problem is an understatement. While the city of Allegheny, Pennsylvania, filed 200 petitions for civil asset forfeiture from 2008 to 2011, Philadelphia filed 6,560 petitions—in 2011 alone. A reportfrom the Philadelphia Inquirer also found that the city brought in more than $64 million in seized propertyfrom 2004 to 2014, which is almost twice the amount raised by cities like Brooklyn, New York, and Los Angeles, California.
A 2015 report from the American Civil Liberties Union noted that “an estimated 32 percent of cash forfeitures are not supported by a conviction,” which means that more than $1 million is forfeited every year from innocent residents in Philadelphia:
“Worrying evidence suggests that the profits and sweeping powers offered by civil forfeiture have distorted a tool originally targeted at cartels and drug kingpins. An article in the Philadelphia City Paper in 2012 indicated that Philadelphia prosecutors regularly forfeit sums as small as $100 and that people trying to get their property back sometimes had to attend upwards of ten court dates just to reach a hearing before a judge. Other media accounts chronicled the human toll of civil forfeiture. In one, a Philadelphia grandmother faced losing her home because a grandson sold a small amount of drugs out of it. In another, a Lancaster mother had $300 seized from her purse when her son was arrested on narcotics charges.”
The city of Philadelphia has now agreed to a settlement, which includes the following promises, according to a report from Reason:
The city will no longer seek property forfeitures for simple drug possession
The city will stop seizing petty amounts of cash without accompanying arrests or evidence in a criminal case
The city will put judges in charge of forfeiture hearings and will streamline the hearing process
The city will ban the Philadelphia district attorney and Philadelphia Police Department from using forfeiture revenue to fund their payroll.
The city will disburse the $3 million settlement fund to qualifying members of the class action based on the circumstances of their case.
While the results of the lawsuit are encouraging, it remains to be seen how the Philadelphia Police department will respond, and if it will lash out at residents for the large decrease in revenue that was being stolen from innocent citizens.
“I’m glad that there is finally a measure of justice for people like me who did nothing wrong but still found themselves fighting to keep what was rightly theirs. No one in Philadelphia should ever have to go through the nightmare my family faced,” Chris Sourovelis said in response to the outcome of the lawsuit.
The Institute for Justice also released a statement, calling the settlement a “groundbreaking” accomplishment that will have a positive effect for residents for years to come:
“For too long, Philadelphia treated its citizens like ATMs, ensnaring thousands of people in a system designed to strip people of their property and their rights. No more. Today’s groundbreaking agreement will end years of abuse and create a fund to compensate innocent owners.”
The death of Robert Parry earlier this year felt like a farewell to the age of the reporter. Parry was “a trailblazer for independent journalism”, wrote Seymour Hersh, with whom he shared much in common.
By John Pilger
Hersh revealed the My Lai massacre in Vietnam and the secret bombing of Cambodia, Parry exposed Iran-Contra, a drugs and gun-running conspiracy that led to the White House. In 2016, they separately produced compelling evidence that the Assad government in Syria had not used chemical weapons. They were not forgiven.
Driven from the “mainstream”, Hersh must publish his work outside the United States. Parry set up his own independent news website Consortium News, where, in a final piece following a stroke, he referred to journalism’s veneration of “approved opinions” while “unapproved evidence is brushed aside or disparaged regardless of its quality.”
Although journalism was always a loose extension of establishment power, something has changed in recent years. Dissent tolerated when I joined a national newspaper in Britain in the 1960s has regressed to a metaphoric underground as liberal capitalism moves towards a form of corporate dictatorship. This is a seismic shift, with journalists policing the new “groupthink”, as Parry called it, dispensing its myths and distractions, pursuing its enemies.
Witness the witch-hunts against refugees and immigrants, the willful abandonment by the “MeToo” zealots of our oldest freedom, presumption of innocence, the anti-Russia racism and anti-Brexit hysteria, the growing anti-China campaign and the suppression of a warning of world war.
With many if not most independent journalists barred or ejected from the “mainstream”, a corner of the Internet has become a vital source of disclosure and evidence-based analysis: true journalism sites such as wikileaks.org, consortiumnews.com, wsws.org, truthdig.com, globalresearch.org, counterpunch.org and informationclearinghouse.info are required reading for those trying to make sense of a world in which science and technology advance wondrously while political and economic life in the fearful “democracies” regress behind a media facade of narcissistic spectacle.
In Britain, just one website offers consistently independent media criticism. This is the remarkable Media Lens — remarkable partly because its founders and editors as well as its only writers, David Edwards and David Cromwell, since 2001 have concentrated their gaze not on the usual suspects, the Tory press, but the paragons of reputable liberal journalism: the BBC, The Guardian, Channel 4 News.
Their method is simple. Meticulous in their research, they are respectful and polite when they ask why a journalist why he or she produced such a one-sided report, or failed to disclose essential facts or promoted discredited myths.
The replies they receive are often defensive, at times abusive; some are hysterical, as if they have pushed back a screen on a protected species.
I would say Media Lens has shattered a silence about corporate journalism. Like Noam Chomsky and Edward Herman in Manufacturing Consent, they represent a Fifth Estate that deconstructs and demystifies the media’s power.
What is especially interesting about them is that neither is a journalist. David Edwards is a former teacher, David Cromwell is an oceanographer. Yet, their understanding of the morality of journalism — a term rarely used; let’s call it true objectivity — is a bracing quality of their online Media Lens dispatches.
I think their work is heroic and I would place a copy of their just published book, Propaganda Blitz, in every journalism school that services the corporate system, as they all do.
Take the chapter, Dismantling the National Health Service, in which Edwards and Cromwell describe the critical part played by journalists in the crisis facing Britain’s pioneering health service.
The NHS crisis is the product of a political and media construct known as “austerity”, with its deceitful, weasel language of “efficiency savings” (the BBC term for slashing public expenditure) and “hard choices” (the willful destruction of the premises of civilized life in modern Britain).
“Austerity” is an invention. Britain is a rich country with a debt owed by its crooked banks, not its people. The resources that would comfortably fund the National Health Service have been stolen in broad daylight by the few allowed to avoid and evade billions in taxes.
Using a vocabulary of corporate euphemisms, the publicly-funded Health Service is being deliberately run down by free market fanatics, to justify its selling-off. The Labour Party of Jeremy Corbyn may appear to oppose this, but is it? The answer is very likely no. Little of any of this is alluded to in the media, let alone explained.
Edwards and Cromwell have dissected the 2012 Health and Social Care Act, whose innocuous title belies its dire consequences. Unknown to most of the population, the Act ends the legal obligation of British governments to provide universal free health care: the bedrock on which the NHS was set up following the Second World War. Private companies can now insinuate themselves into the NHS, piece by piece.
Where, asks Edwards and Cromwell, was the BBC while this momentous Bill was making its way through Parliament? With a statutory commitment to “providing a breadth of view” and to properly inform the public of “matters of public policy,” the BBC never spelt out the threat posed to one of the nation’s most cherished institutions. A BBC headline said: “Bill which gives power to GPs passes.” This was pure state propaganda.
Media and Iraq Invasion
There is a striking similarity with the BBC’s coverage of Prime Minister Tony Blair’s lawless invasion of Iraq in 2003, which left a million dead and many more dispossessed. A study by the University of Wales, Cardiff, found that the BBC reflected the government line “overwhelmingly” while relegating reports of civilian suffering. A Media Tenor study placed the BBC at the bottom of a league of western broadcasters in the time they gave to opponents of the invasion. The corporation’s much-vaunted “principle” of impartiality was never a consideration.
One of the most telling chapters in Propaganda Blitz describes the smear campaigns mounted by journalists against dissenters, political mavericks and whistleblowers. The Guardian’s campaign against the WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is the most disturbing. Assange, whose epic WikiLeaks disclosures brought fame, journalism prizes and largesse to The Guardian, was abandoned when he was no longer useful. He was then subjected to a vituperative – and cowardly — onslaught of a kind I have rarely known.
With not a penny going to WikiLeaks, a hyped Guardian book led to a lucrative Hollywood movie deal. The book’s authors, Luke Harding and David Leigh, gratuitously described Assange as a “damaged personality” and “callous.” They also disclosed the secret password he had given the paper in confidence, which was designed to protect a digital file containing the U.S. embassy cables.
With Assange now trapped in the Ecuadorean embassy, Harding, standing among the police outside, gloated on his blog that “Scotland Yard may get the last laugh.”
The Guardian columnist Suzanne Moore wrote, “I bet Assange is stuffing himself full of flattened guinea pigs. He really is the most massive turd.”
Moore, who describes herself as a feminist, later complained that, after attacking Assange, she had suffered “vile abuse.” Edwards and Cromwell wrote to her: “That’s a real shame, sorry to hear that. But how would you describe calling someone ‘the most massive turd’? Vile abuse?”
Moore replied that no, she would not, adding, “I would advise you to stop being so bloody patronizing.” Her former Guardian colleague James Ball wrote, “It’s difficult to imagine what Ecuador’s London embassy smells like more than five and a half years after Julian Assange moved in.”
Such slow-witted viciousness appeared in a newspaper described by its editor, Katharine Viner, as “thoughtful and progressive.” What is the root of this vindictiveness? Is it jealousy, a perverse recognition that Assange has achieved more journalistic firsts than his snipers can claim in a lifetime? Is it that he refuses to be “one of us” and shames those who have long sold out the independence of journalism?
Journalism students should study this to understand that the source of “fake news” is not only trollism, or the likes of Fox News, or Donald Trump, but a journalism self-anointed with a false respectability: a liberal journalism that claims to challenge corrupt state power but, in reality, courts and protects it, and colludes with it. The amorality of the years of Tony Blair, whomThe Guardian has failed to rehabilitate, is its echo.
“[It is] an age in which people yearn for new ideas and fresh alternatives,” wrote Katharine Viner. Her political writer Jonathan Freedland dismissed the yearning of young people who supported the modest policies of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn as “a form of narcissism.”
“How did this man ….,” brayed the Guardian‘s Zoe Williams, “get on the ballot in the first place?” A choir of the paper’s precocious windbags joined in, thereafter queuing to fall on their blunt swords when Corbyn came close to winning the 2017 general election in spite of the media.
Complex stories are reported to a cult-like formula of bias, hearsay and omission: Brexit, Venezuela, Russia, Syria. On Syria, only the investigations of a group of independent journalists have countered this, revealing the network of Anglo-American backing of jihadists in Syria, including those related to ISIS.
John Pilger is an Australian journalist and BAFTA award-winning documentary film maker. – http://johnpilger.com/
One of America’s oldest insurance companies, John Hancock, has its eyes set firmly on the future. With the arrival of Big Data and the now never-ending stream of information that is available to data brokers on individuals in nearly real time, the lure of using it for customer analytics and behavior modification has become irresistible.
Dissident Catholic Clergy in Nine Countries Challenge and Threaten to Separate from the Church of Rome over Child Abuse September 20, 2018 ITCCS Breaking News Bulletin (A Complete Report will be aired this Sunday September 23 on Here We Stand at www.bbsradio.com/herewestand, at 3 pm pacific, 6 pm eastern and 11 pm GMT)
Brussels: (9/20/2018 1600 hrs GMT)
Yesterday, the ITCCS Central Office was contacted by a network of dissident Roman Catholic clergy who on Sunday September 23 will be releasing to the world media a “Legal and Moral Declaration of Non Cooperation” with the Roman Catholic hierarchy. The group, which includes senior clergy and Bishops, has operated clandestinely within the Church since 2014, but is now surfacing publicly. The group has authorized the ITCCS to release its Statement to our affiliates and to assist them in their efforts.
To quote a spokesman for the group,
“The proven murderous actions towards children by the Pope and senior Vatican officials prevents us from associating with them any longer … We are not lobbying for change. We are separating ourselves from that which is not the Church of Christ.”
A complete report and the Statement itself will be announced this Sunday September 23 on the ITCCS public media voice ‘Here We Stand’ (see above link). Accompanying this report on the air will be updates of a growing revolutionary movement in Ireland, featuring front line activists of the ‘Take Back the City’ movement.
Please tune in and let the world know of these historic actions. And join us in the global fight for liberty!
Issued by the ITCCS Directorate, 1600 hrs. GMT, 20 September, 2018
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