Archive for the ‘media bias’ Category
How Ron Paul became the equivalent of the 13th floor in a hotel.
This video is worth taking the time to watch, even if you didn’t like or support Ron Paul. There is no denying he got shafted, and that should give everyone pause to ask the question: WHY?
Think about it long and hard. There were candidates the media lambasted and ridiculed, persecuted and fawned over, with both negative and positive coverage. However, no matter what the angle, it all resulted in the key thing: attention. After all, as the old adage goes, ‘all publicity is good publicity.’ Ron Paul was the ONLY candidate who literally became persona non grata, even when it was glaringly obvious.
This video compiles all of the extremely compelling evidence in one place.
We live at a time when the world is changing more rapidly than ever before. Just about everything that can be shaken is being shaken, and anyone with half a brain realizes that we are heading for challenges that previous generations never even could have imagined.
There certainly is no shortage of news, but instead of focusing on the terribly important issues that we are facing, the mainstream media feeds us an endless stream of fluff, scandals and celebrities.
Just check out some of the headlines that I found on the front pages of major mainstream news websites today….
“Man Dies After Roach-Eating Contest”
“Ex-NFL Cheerleader Admits To Sex With Minor”
“Facebook Rolls Out Pinterest-Like Tool For Buying Stuff”
“Grumpy Cat Becomes Internet Sensation”
So what should the mainstream media really be talking about today?
The following are 28 good questions that the mainstream media should be asking….
1. Why is the IMF warning that there is an “alarmingly high” risk of a deeper global economic slowdown?
2. Why is Switzerland preparing for “major civil unrest” throughout Europe?
3. If the Spanish financial system completely collapses, what is that going to mean for the rest of Europe and the rest of the globe?
4. Is Turkey about to drag the rest of NATO (including the United States) into a war with Syria?
5. Why aren’t people screaming in outrage about the fact that the U.S. national debt increased by more than a trillion dollars for the fourth straight year in 2012?
6. Should we be concerned that the U.S. government added more to the U.S. national debt on the first day of fiscal year 2013 than it did from 1776 to 1941 combined?
7. If temporary refinery problems can cause some gas stations to shut down and cause gas prices in California to skyrocket to all-time highs, what would a real crisis do?
8. Why are some analysts predicting that a “rapid collapse” is coming for the U.S. dollar?
9. Will the U.S. dollar soon lose its status as the primary reserve currency of the world?
10. Why is Marc Faber warning that the wealthy “may lose up to 50 percent of their total wealth“?
11. By keeping interest rates near zero, is the Federal Reserve crushing the retirement dreams of millions of elderly Americans?
12. Why do Barack Obama, Mitt Romney and most members of Congress continue to stand behind the TSA when nearly 400 TSA employees have been fired for stealing from travelers since 2003?
13. Why are nearly half a million employees of the federal government making over $100,000 a year?
14. How in the world can you have a debate about the economy that lasts for an hour and a half and never even mention Ben Bernanke, the Federal Reserve or quantitative easing?
15. Why are Romney campaign signs being smeared with excrement?
16. British taxpayers spent 57.8 million dollars on the royal family in 2011. U.S. taxpayers spent 1.4 billion dollars on the Obamas that same year. How in the world can this be justified?
17. Why does the U.S. government treat our military veterans like garbage? Many of them have given everything for their country. Shouldn’t we treat them with more respect?
18. Why is the mainstream media ignoring a warning that an international gang of cybercriminals plans “to steal money from the online accounts of thousands of consumers at 30 or more major U.S. banks“?
19. The New England Complex Systems Institute in Cambridge, Massachusetts is warning that rapidly rising global food prices could soon lead to massive food riots all over the planet. Is this something that we should be concerned about?
20. Why is the United Nations pushing to have the authority to impose “global taxes” on all of us?
21. How did we get to the point where sex trafficking is now at epidemic levels all over the United States?
22. Why are so many young people being arrested? Should we be concerned that 41 percent of all Americans have been arrested by the time they reach the age of 23?
23. Why are most Americans either overweight or obese or severely obese?
24. How was one Baltimore woman able to accumulate 30 free cell phones all paid for by the federal government?
25. Why are nearly 30 percent of all young adults in the 25 to 34 year old age bracket living at home with their parents?
26. Why has the birth rate in the United States fallen to an all-time low?
28. Is the U.S. Supreme Court about to make it illegal to resell our own stuff at yard sales, in thrift stores and on eBay?
“Sometimes Being Responsible Means Pissing People Off”
By Janet Tavakoli – July 3, 2012
Last week, Gillian Tett of the Financial Times wrote how five years previously, she and her fellow journalists were intimidated into backing off of a huge story about banks manipulating LIBOR. This is the London Interbank Offered Rate set by a poll of leading banks to determine the benchmark interest rate referenced by many home mortgage loans, floating rate notes, collateralized debt obligations, and many other financial instruments:
“At the time, this sparked furious criticism from the British Bankers’ Association, as well as big banks such as Barclays; the word “scaremongering” was used. But now we know that, amid the blustering from the BBA, the reality was worse than we thought. As emails released by the UK Financial Services Authority show, some Barclays traders were engaged in a constant and pervasive attempt to rig the Libor market from 2006 on, with the encouragement of more senior managers. And the British bank may not have been alone.”
(“LIBOR Affair Shows Banking’s Big Conceit,” Financial Times, June 28, 2012.)
At the heart of the allegations is what appears to be a blasé criminal conspiracy within Barclays. Moreover, Tett is correct. Barclays is far from alone.
Unfortunately, the intimidation was a success. The BBA and Barclays chose their word carefully, because accusing journalists of “scaremongering” suggests they are irresponsible sensationalist hacks. In essence, through lies and intimidation, they threatened to ruin careers.
The Financial Times backed off. As a result, the best coverage of the ongoing scandal came from a controversial blog with mostly anonymous writers called ZeroHedge. It pounded on the story harder than mainstream financial media. Not only are other banks implicated in the scandal, the Bank of England, a bank regulator, is also implicated.
The Future of Finance
In December 2009, I participated in the Wall Street Journal’s Future of Finance Initiative in England along with Alistair Darling, then Britain’s Chancellor of the Exchequer, and Robert (“Bob”) E. Diamond, Jr., then President of Barclays PLC among others. The Wall Street Journal wrote a summary of the conference highlights. Allow me to highlight some things it missed.
Alistair Darling, Chancellor of the Exchequer, spoke on the opening evening. I asked him why massive financial fraud remained unaddressed. Darling appeared momentarily confused and seemed to suggest this was exclusively a U.S. problem to be handled by the courts. I pushed back on this notion. By the time one needs a lawyer, it is too late. I noted that we, the middle aged financiers in the room, are responsible for taking action. If we don’t face this issue head on, we will never restore trust in the financial system.
That was the last time the word “fraud” was mentioned at the conference, and my question and Darling’s answer and my rebuttal were not reported.
Bob Diamond defended financial innovation saying there is a real purpose for structuring credit for pension funds. He was probably unaware that state pension funds in the United States were damaged by the unintended consequences of a “AAA” rated structured credit product. The pension funds were wise enough to avoid investing in the product, yet as I explained in my February 2007 letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission, large fixed income pension funds were unintentionally harmed by the market distortions caused by this “financial innovation.”
This conference took place just over one year after the global financial meltdown. Diamond didn’t address malfeasance much less fraud. For example, he conveniently omitted Barclays’ business relationship with Bear Stearns’s hedge funds (Barclays sued over hundreds of millions in losses and later dropped the suit.)—among other unrelated problematic issues—and he was mum about Barclays’ LIBOR manipulation.
Today, Bob Diamond, CEO of Barclays, announced his resignation in the midst of the LIBOR scandal. There is speculation that Diamond was pressured to resign by the Bank of England after Diamond’s bellicose threats to expose embarrassing details about his interactions with bank regulators.
Threats are more effective against respected journalists whose careers you are threatening to ruin than against complicit regulators that can ruin yours.
How Many Billions in Unrecognized Losses?
So how did the “Future of Finance” work out for the British attendees? It worked out much as it had in the past. Malfeasance remains unchecked, unless something like the LIBOR scandal blows up. This isn’t the only problem with the British banks. Like their U.S. and European counterparties, the balance sheets need a thorough going-over to determine the true extent of the global financial debacle. The banks are not just lying about LIBOR.
Ed: The allegation has now been made that the UK government and/or BOE, and perhaps the Fed, were involved as well. What’s clear is that there were multiple people involved in an organized attempt to rig this market — the largest interest-rate market in the world – and that they did so with intent to profit. This was not a “one-off” event predicated by some government official; it was an on-going series of intentional acts.
But just as with the other scams of this sort, nobody has been indicted, prosecuted or jailed, and until they are, it simply is not going to stop. We the people of this nation and indeed of the world must decide if, and when, we’re going to stop allowing this serial financial rape to be perpetrated upon us.
Discussion (registration required to post)
The elites who run this country exercise power in two ways, one private, one public. Politicians and policy are manipulated through registered lobbyists on Capitol Hill, and in private meetings at lavish fundraisers. It’s all about money and access. All of this takes place behind closed doors, out of the public’s sight. The manipulation of American citizens is carried out through the corporate owned media (image left, click to enlarge). There’s nothing private about it; it’s right there in front of you on the TV. How does this work?
The primary functions of the mainstream media (MSM) are to make money by catering to their advertisers and to maintain the socioeconomic status quo. Each goal reinforces the other, i.e. they are mutually supporting. Special interests seek to maintain their privileged status. This is accomplished by 1) narrowing the frame of debate; 2) omission of crucial information; 3) taking the political system seriously when it obviously should not be taken seriously; 4) propaganda telling us how well we’re doing; and 5) distracting citizens with ever dumber (and ever more insidious) entertainments of various sorts—sitcoms, “news” shows, “reality” shows, gladitorial contests, and so on, all interspersed with advertising so manipulative and shallow that one is constantly embarrassed to be a member of our species.
But the dumbing-down process through which harmless docility is encouraged and reinforced is subtle. In this conversation with David Talbot, Salon’s Glenn Greenwald explains how it works, using the Occupy protests as an example. We’ll have to overlook the fact that Salon also features many glowing reviews of various TV shows which serve the functions just described, regardless of their story-telling or entertainment value.
I should also note for the record that many TV shows or movies nowadays feature—
- bloodsucking vampires or flesh-eating zombies (e.g. The Walking Dead)
There are vampires or zombies spawned by an alien invasion. There are vampires or zombies in some dystopian future. There are vampires or zombies of unknown provenance. And so on. No one seems to tire of vampires or zombies, although hoards of zombies are far more common.
You have a few bloodsucking vampires (America’s elites) preying on the mass of ordinary people, who must fend them off by any means available. Just like real life. Or you have a few “normal” people (the elites again) fending off an army of marauding, mindless zombies (the American people). Just like real life. Sigmund Freud or Carl Jung would have had a field day with this stuff.
The Greenwald video is 6 minutes long. Watch it first, and then I’ll make a few concluding remarks. There will be of course a short advertisement at the start.
Thus we find that those in the mainstream media are merely servants of the ruling elites. The media stars have internalized the values of those elites, thus they need not be told explicitly what to say or do. (The “conspiracy” interpretation of the MSM.) Indeed, these well-heeled folks imagine themselves to be part of the ruling class, and sometimes they are (e.g. CNN’s Erin Burnett, formerly at CNBC).
The Occupy protesters are threatening to the elites, and must be relentlessly marginalized until they are rendered harmless. Alternatively, if that doesn’t work, they must be swallowed up by that co-optation monster called the Two Party System. In the case of the Occupy protests, marginalizing them failed, so now every method is being applied to co-opt them. (They are the Democratic version of the Republican Tea Party.)
Bonus Video — They’re Made Out Of Meat