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Trump Derangement International

Diego Velázquez The Spinners 1655-60

 

Dirk Kurbjuweit, deputy editor-in-chief of Germany’s Der Spiegel magazine for the past 4 years, unwittingly put his foot a mile deep in his mouth this week when he reacted to a letter written by US Ambassador to Berlin Richard Grenell. His reaction presents perhaps the most perfect example of the downfall of news, journalism, the media in general, that we’ve seen so far. Most perfect among very stiff competition.

After Der Spiegel itself this week ‘outed’ its award-winning star reporter, Claas Relotius, as someone who had made up many of his lauded articles from scratch, Grenell suggested the magazine, and especially its editorial staff, shouldn’t think they can get away with putting all the blame on just this one guy. He tweeted:

We value policy criticism. We love a free press. But @Spiegel literally fabricated stories saying people (Americans) were racist & xenophobic. They made up events, details, & lies – and no editor checked the stories. Every real journalist should be outraged by this.

And he wrote a letter to Der Spiegel, albeit addressed at the ‘wrong’ editor, Steffen Klussman, who won’t be in the post until after Jan. 1:

The recent revelations of completely fabricated stories, completely fictional people and fraudulent details in Spiegel over the last seven years are very troubling to the US Embassy. These fake news stories largely focused on US policies and certain segments of the American people. It is clear we were targeted by institutional bias and we are troubled by the atmosphere that encouraged this recklessness.

While Spiegel’s anti-American narratives have expanded over the last years, the anti-American bias at the magazine has exploded since the election of President Trump. We are concerned that these narratives are pushed by Spiegel’s senior leadership and reporters are responding to what the leadership wants.

This is where Dirk Kurbjuweit’s foot enters his mouth, stage left, and starts its long journey down:

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

America Is One Of The World’s Deadliest Countries For Journalists

Media group Reporters Without Borders said Tuesday it has observed a terrifying trend in the number of journalists killed and imprisoned worldwide, in 2018.

For the first time, the US is one of the world’s deadliest countries for journalists after six were killed.

The Paris-based group, also known as RSF, said the US ranked sixth on the list for most dangerous countries for journalists, behind Afghanistan, Syria, Mexico, Yemen, and India.

Four journalists, as well as a sales manager, were killed in June when a deranged gunman opened fire at the Annapolis, Maryland offices of the Capital Gazette. Two more reporters, a North Carolina television anchor and cameraman, were killed by a tree while covering a hurricane in May.

“Non-professional journalists play a fundamental role in the production of news and information in countries with oppressive regimes and countries at war, where it is hard for professional journalists to operate,” RSF said in the report.

The big picture: The group states there is an “unprecedented” level of worldwide hostility against members of the press, than in any other period on record. 

Murder, imprisonment, hostage-taking, and disappearances of journalists all increased on a year-over-year basis.

In total, 80 journalists were killed in 2018, with 49 murdered while 31 were killed in the act of reporting.

While the report blames warzones in Afghanistan for the increased deaths, 45% of those killed were not in conflict regions.

Three hundred and forty-eight reporters have so far been detained this year and 60 were held hostage.

China leads the world in detentions, with 60 journalists held in state jails. Thirty-one journalists are currently being held in Syria.

“Violence against journalists has reached unprecedented levels this year, and the situation is now critical,” Christophe Deloire, the group’s secretary general said.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Washington Is Changing The World Order Against Its Own Interests

Washington Is Changing The World Order Against Its Own Interests

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The hubris and arrogance of Washington have been at work since the Clinton regime to destroy the power and relevance of the United States.

This website has an international audience. The most asked question from this audience is the world order. There is a realization that Washington’s control might weaken, a development people abroad see as hopeful. They ask me for verification of their hope.

Here is my answer:

The world order has already changed.  China has a larger and more powerful industrial and manufacturing based economy than the US, and China’s potential domestic consumer market is four times larger than that of the US. As economies are consumer based, China’s potential is an economy four times larger than that of the US.

Russia has a far more capable military with weapon systems unmatched by the US. The US is drowning in debt, and the illegal and irresponsible sanctions that Washington tries to impose on others are driving the world’s largest countries away from the use of the US dollar as world reserve currency and away from Western clearance systems such as SWIFT.  The United States already has one foot in the grave.  Any country sufficiently stupid to ally with the US is allied with a dead man walking.

President Eisenhower, a five-star general, warned Americans 57 years ago to no effect that the military/security complex was already a threat to the American people’s ability to control their government. Today the military/security complex is the Government.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Truth and Free Speech Are Being Taken Away From Us

Truth and Free Speech Are Being Taken Away From Us

Free speech and the ability to speak truth are being shut down. It is happening with the complicity of the print and TV media, the liberal/progressive/left, the US Department of Justice (sic), the law schools and bar associations, Congress, and the federal judiciary.

The attack on Julian Assange is the arrow aimed at the heart of the ability to publish the truth. If a journalist can be indicted for espionage for publishing leaked documents that a corrupt government has classified in order to conceal its crimes, the First Amendment is dead.

Moreover, as the claim is that government was harmed by Wikileaks publishing the truth, Assange’s secret indictment sets the precedent that truth is harmful to government. This precedent will be extended to include the publication of any information or opinion, classified or not, that the government regards as harmful. The media then officially becomes what it mainly already is in effect—a Ministry of Propaganda for the government and those who control it.

As a person who has held high security clearances, I can say with confidence that no more than one percent of classified information falls in the realm of national security. Most classification is simply to prevent the people and Congress from knowing what is going on. Classification allows the various components of government to put the spin where they want it. “National security” has always been an excuse accepted by patriots for the government to conceal its wrong doings and hidden agendas.

Give thought to the alleged harm done by Wikileaks publishing the information leaked by Bradley Manning and the Clinton emails that were downloaded onto a thumb drive and not hacked as security experts have proved.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

How Plutocratic Media Keeps Staff Aligned With Establishment Agendas

How Plutocratic Media Keeps Staff Aligned With Establishment Agendas

Why do mainstream media reporters within ostensibly free democracies act just like state media propagandists? Why are they so reliably pro-establishment, all throughout every mainstream outlet? Why do they so consistently marginalize any idea that doesn’t fit within the extremely narrow Overton window of acceptable opinion?Why does anyone who inconveniences western establishment power always find themselves on the losing end of a trial by media? Why are they so dependably adversarial toward anything that could be perceived as a flaw in any nation outside the US-centralized power alliance, and so dependably forgiving of the flaws of the nations within it?



The way I see it there are only two possible explanations for the unanimous consensus in mass media on these issues:

Explanation 1: The consensus exists because the mass media reporters are all telling the truth all the time.

OR

Explanation 2: The consensus exists because there is some kind of system in place which keeps all mass media reporters lying to us and painting a false picture about what’s going on in the world.

Those are the only two possibilities, and only one can be true, since any mixture of the two would result in the loss of consensus.

Most mainstream westerners harbor an unquestioned assumption that Explanation 1 is the only possibility. The things they see on CNN, the BBC and the ABC are all accurate descriptions of what’s really going on in the world, and the consensus in their descriptions exists because they’re all describing the same objective reality.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

MSM Is Getting Weirder, More Frantic, And More Desperate By The Day

MSM Is Getting Weirder, More Frantic, And More Desperate By The Day

When even the Washington Post is saying your Russiagate article is bad journalism, your Russiagate article is really, really bad journalism.

In an article titled “The Guardian offered a bombshell story about Paul Manafort. It still hasn’t detonated.”, WaPo writer Pul Farhi draws attention to the fact that it has been a week since the Guardian published a claim that former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort met repeatedly with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, without any evidence backing up the claim, using solely anonymous sources, and despite the claims contradicting known records of Assange’s guests at the Ecuadorian embassy. Criticism and demands for answers have been growing louder and louder from both friends and enemies of WikiLeaks, with new plot holes opening up in the Guardian‘s narrative daily, and the scandal is now moving into mainstream awareness.

And the Guardian remains silent, with its editor-in-chief Katharine Viner refusing to utter so much as a peep of defense this entire time. The only comment the publication has issued has been repeated day after day verbatim to every news outlet which writes about this bizarre occurrence: “This story relied on a number of sources. We put these allegations to both Paul Manafort and Julian Assange’s representatives prior to publication. Neither responded to deny the visits taking place. We have since updated the story to reflect their denials.” Which is basically just implying that they can print any libelous nonsense they want about anyone if their denials aren’t sent to the proper email address on time.

This, clearly, is bananas.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Who I Am, Where I Stand, And What I’m Trying To Do Here

Who I Am, Where I Stand, And What I’m Trying To Do Here

Every so often I like to write an article describing exactly what I’m about in the interests of transparency, and for the benefit of any new followers who aren’t quite sure what they’re looking at here. It’s a good exercise for me because it allows me to clarify for myself exactly why I got into this gig and what specifically I’m trying to get out of it, and it lays all my intentions on the table so readers can decide if I’m their cup of tea or not.

Brief bio: I am Australian, lived in Melbourne nearly all of my life, two kids, twice married and once divorced. I got a journalism degree in 2003 but figured out long before completing the course that the media deck is stacked so far against truth that I wouldn’t be able to do the kind of work I wanted to do, so I did some environmental activism while paying the bills with corporate work. I had a bunch of transformative personal experiences during that time period, then in 2016 I got a job at a self-publishing news outlet where I quickly gained an audience for my opinion articles about the Bernie Sanders movement (which arose from a commentary void I’d noticed needed filling while I was participating in Bernie Facebook groups). In 2017 I got a Patreon account and became a fully crowd-funded writer who is answerable to no one, a privileged position I exploit to its fullest in saying things I think need to be said regardless of the taboos against saying them.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Case Against WikiLeaks is a Threat to All Journalists

The Case Against WikiLeaks is a Threat to All Journalists

The Justice Department has prepared criminal charges against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and is working behind the scenes to have him extradited to the United States. Press freedom and the right to dissent may hang in the balance.

The criminal charges were accidentally revealed last week when Assange’s name was found on the court filing of an unrelated case, suggesting that prosecutors had copied a boilerplate text and forgotten to change the defendant’s name.

Barry Pollack, a U.S. lawyer on Assange’s team, told the New York Times: “The news that criminal charges have apparently been filed against Mr. Assange is even more troubling than the haphazard manner in which that information has been revealed.” Pollack continued, “The government bringing criminal charges against someone for publishing truthful information is a dangerous path for a democracy to take.”

Assange has been holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London since 2012, after seeking protection against sexual assault allegations in Sweden. While the initial arrest warrant has since been revoked, if Assange leaves the embassy he runs the risk of being apprehended by UK authorities and extradited to the United States, a process greatly facilitated by the recent criminal charges.

Using free speech against us

The U.S. government has targeted WikiLeaks and Assange for years. A confidential U.S. Army document from 2008 recommends “legal actions” and attacks on the livelihood and reputation of “current or former insiders, leakers, or whistleblowers” connected to WikiLeaks in order to “damage or destroy” its “trust as a center of gravity.”

WikiLeaks enjoyed a brief heyday among Republicans when it released hacked Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails during the 2016 presidential election. Then-candidate Donald Trump mentioned WikiLeaks over 160 times during the final month of the campaign, calling it “amazing” and saying “We love Wikileaks. Wikileaks. They have revealed a lot.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Trump and Big Media: Clash or Collusion?

Trump and Big Media: Clash or Collusion?

Now that the media is protesting the suspension of Jim Acosta’s credentials Sam Husseini asks why he and the other journalists didn’t intervene on his behalf when he was expelled from a news conference.


CNN’s Jim Acosta has had his White House press credentials suspended following a tense exchange with Trump on Wednesday. CNN, the White House Correspondents’ Association and others have denounced the move.

CNN says it’s “Facts First.” That’s about as believable as Trump’s claim of “America First.” Some see aggressive journalism here. I see media logrolling, and “frenemies” at play.

On a superficial level, I empathize with Acosta. At press conferences I try to ask tough questions. At State Department briefings, spokeswoman Heather Nauert has carefully avoided calling on me, especially after this exchange when she refused to say what State’s position was on torture and evaded criticizing Saudi Arabia and Israel.

I was suspended from the National Press Club for a time (the ethics committee eventually overturned it) after confronting a Saudi autocrat at the start of the Arab uprisings. And this summer I was forcibly ejected from the Trump-Putin news conference in Helsinki for nothing more than carrying a sign with the subject of my question — a tactic I hoped would increase my chances of getting called on.

Acosta seems eager for solidarity just now.

Husseini: Kicked out.

This is interesting in part because of how he and his network failed to extend that same solidarity to me that day in Helsinki. Among other things, after I was forced out of the room, while clutching my sign, “Nuclear Weapon Ban Treaty,” Anderson Cooper asked Acosta what was going on.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Presstitutes Abandon Journalism For Political Activism

Presstitutes Abandon Journalism For Political Activism

When President Trump nominated Jeff Sessions as his Attorney General, the presstitutes were opposed to Sessions and declared him unfit for office. Now that he has been fired, the presstitutes are his champions.

There are reports that MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow has organized a protest march for today denouncing Trump for firing Sessions. https://news.grabien.com/story-msnbcs-maddow-organizing-street-marches-protest-sessions-fir

CNN’s Jake Tapper added his view of the firing as “that’s how gangsters act” and got John Dean from the Watergate era to delare that Sessions’ firing was “planned like a murder.” https://www.cnn.com/videos/politics/2018/11/07/saturday-night-massacre-sessions-john-dean-jake-tapper-newsroom-intv-bts-vpx.cnn

It is the same story elsewhere in the presstitute media.

The presstitutes are upset about Sessions being fired, because Sessions recused himself from the Russiagate investigation, thus permitting Mueller to go beyond his mandate. Mueller’s indictment of Manafort, for example, has nothing whatsoever to do with Russiagate. The Trump-hating presstitutes and Trump-hating Democrats still hope to make something of the investigation that has come up completely empty after two years, whereas a functioning attorney general will close down the investigation as having found nothing and wandered off into unrelated matters.

As Maddow illustrates, the presstitutes have become political activists who use their media positions not to report, but to campaign against Trump, whether it is Maddow over Sessions or CNN’s Jim Acosta over the caravan from Honduras. https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2018/11/07/white-house-suspends-jim-acostas-press-pass-after-combative-briefing/

Did Acosta show any concern for Hondurans when “America’s First Black President” overthrew the democratically elected government and installed Washington’s man?

Indeed, Larry King, a CNN host for 25 years said that CNN stopped doing news in order to do in Trump. https://thehill.com/homenews/media/415669-larry-king-hits-cnn-stopped-doing-news-to-focus-on-trump

NPR plays the same game. It is Trump, Trump, Trump every day.

Killing Journalists Is Wrong When the Saudis Do It — and When the United States Does It, Too

Killing Journalists Is Wrong When the Saudis Do It — and When the United States Does It, Too

Fatima Ayyoub (top R), 4, daughter of Jordanian Al Jazeera correspondent Tareq Ayyoub, is seen next to pictures of her father with Naeem Ayoub (L), father of Tareq Ayyoub, during a protest outside the Al Jazeera office in Amman Novmber 24, 2005. Ayyoub was a victim of a missile attack that hit the Al Jazeera bureau in Baghdad on April 8, 2003. Britain has warned media organisations they are breaking the law if they publish details of a leaked document said to show U.S. President George W. Bush wanted to bomb Arabic television station Al Jazeera. REUTERS/Majed Jaber - RP2DSFHMGFADTareq Ayoub’s daughter, Fatima, 4, and father, Naeem Ayoub, during a protest outside the Al Jazeera office in Amman on Nov. 24, 2005.

Photo: Majed Jaber/Reuters

WHAT LESSON SHOULD be learned from the brutal murder of Washington Post contributor Jamal Khashoggi and the ongoing geopolitical fallout from his death? That governments cannot be allowed to kill journalists with impunity, correct? Everyone from the secretary general of the United Nations to hawkish Republican senators have lined up to make this point and to express their concern and anger.

But is this a lesson that only applies to Middle Eastern dictatorships? Or to Western democracies, too? The United States, perhaps? The reason I ask is that we all now know the name of Arab journalist Jamal Khashoggi, but very few of us know the name of Arab journalist Tareq Ayoub.

The difference between them? An unelected crown prince in the Gulf is blamed for killing Khashoggi, while an elected president of the United States has been blamed for killing Ayoub.

We rightly demand justice in the case of Khashoggi, so why not in the case of Ayoub?

On the morning of April 8, 2003, less than three weeks after U.S. President George W. Bush ordered the illegal invasion of Iraq, Al Jazeera reporter Tareq Ayoub was on the rooftop of his network’s Baghdad bureau. The 35-year-old Palestinian from Jordan and his Iraqi cameraperson, Zoheir Nadhim, were reporting live on a pitched battle between U.S. and Iraqi forces for control of the capital. It was just three days after Ayoub had arrived in the country.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Lynching Journalists

Lynching Journalists

Washington Post Global Opinions correspondent, Jamal Khashoggi, who is Saudi, entered his country’s consulate in Istanbul Tuesday of last week and hasn’t been seen since. Worse, Turkish officials say that Khashoggi was killed inside the consulate, his body dismembered, and then sneaked out of the building—lynched, you might say, and then disappeared, instead of hanged from a tree. The journalist had written articles critical of his country’s young leader, Mohammad bin Salman, the 33-year-old crown prince, who considers himself something of a liberal or at least as a reformer. How ironic that this barbarian act happened in Turkey, where in recent years more journalists have disappeared than in any other country (245 as of earlier this year, though, far as we know, none have been murdered).

Almost simultaneously with the incident in Istanbul, a 30-year-old Bulgarian journalist, Viktoria Marinova, was brutally raped and killed in Ruse, in the northeast of the country, where she was employed as a TV commentator. She had been a political investigator. Nor was she the only European journalist murdered during the past year. Daphne Caruana Galizia, similarly reporting on political issues (corruption in the government), was killed in Malta by a car bomb. And Jan Kuciak, a Slovakian journalist also working on government corruption, was shot and killed along with his fiancée.

Killing journalists has become a growth industry. In April, Jason Rezaian (another Global Opinions writer for the Washington Post, who was held captive in Iran for 544 days) described the deaths of journalists in Nicaragua, India, Brazil and Mexico during the past year. He cites President Rodrigo Duterte, of the Philippines, as saying, “Just because you’re a journalist you are not exempted from assassination, if you’re a son-of-a-bitch.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Investigative Journalist Probing EU Corruption Found Brutally Raped And Murdered

Yet another tragic death of a high profile journalist is now raising questions. A Bulgarian journalist and TV personality who was in the midst of a deep investigation into alleged corruption involving EU funds has been found murdered in the Bulgarian town of Ruse, authorities said on Sunday.

The body of 30-year-old Viktoria Marinova was found in a local park on Saturday, and though so far police have presented the case as a tragic rape and murder unconnected with her professional work as a journalist, Bulgarian media were quick to suggest it could be linked to her EU investigations. Police said on Sunday she appeared to have been beaten, raped, and strangled to death in crime described as “exceptionally brutal”.

Major media outlets in the West, meanwhile, were quick to pick up on the suspicious nature of the timing of the heinous crime, with The Guardian noting that “The European commission and German government have urged Bulgarian authorities to bring to justice those responsible for the brutal killing of the journalist Viktoria Marinova, who had been reporting on alleged corruption in one of the EU’s newest member states.”

Viktoria Marinova worked for a Bulgarian TV station called TVN where she presented two investigative programs. Getty Images

Bulgarian Interior minister Mladen Marinov immediately tried to throw cold water on widespread speculation that she was targeted for here investigation journalism, saying there was no evidence of this: “It is about rape and murder,” he said in a statement. Marinov added that there was no evidence suggesting she had previously been threatened over her work.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

We Need More, Not Less, Separation of State and Journalism

We Need More, Not Less, Separation of State and Journalism

“Newspapers are dying,” writes Rob Kall, Editor-in-Chief of progressive (but refreshingly open-minded) opinion site OpEdNews, in a (recently updated) 2010 op-ed. “Let them. There may have been people who wanted to rescue the buggy whip industry. But they were misguided. It was transportation they really cared about. We need to initiate dynamic, bottom-up approaches to support the ailing field of Journalism, not newspapers.”

Kall’s analysis is as trenchant now as when he first addressed himself to the decline of the newspapers that previous generations knew, and to what looks like a “market failure” on the part of today’s Internet-based news culture. Any mistakes in translating that analysis here are mine, by the way. Here we go:

The rise of free content and ease of entry into the field has us getting more “journalism” … but less real information. Opinion writers (like me) are a dime a dozen. Amateur stringers and glorified copy editors cover five-point-lede “hard news” on the cheap. But the shock troops of news, full-time investigative journalists, have to learn the ropes and they have to be paid. That’s not happening. The result: Many important things get missed and many things that aren’t missed get only insufficient, inaccurate — or worst, sponsor viewpoint biased — coverage.

Kall’s proposed solution: “If the US government invests directly in journalists, so their writings and reports can be freely used by any media organization or site, that investment will yield big results.” He suggests a $3.5 billion program, translating to 50,000 investigative journalists receiving salaries of $60,000 per year with benefits.

My response to Kall: “If the US government invests directly in journalists, we’ll get the journalism the US government wants us to have.”

Kall’s response to me: “That’s a knee-jerk, anti-government reaction. If the funding is structured so journalists can be independent … it doesn’t have to be that way.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Declassified Documents Expose DOJ Rules for Spying on Journalists with Secret Court

Declassified Documents Expose DOJ Rules for Spying on Journalists with Secret Court

Newly released documents detail never before seen Department of Justice rules relating to conducting surveillance on journalists suspected of being an agent of a foreign government.

journalists

On Monday the Freedom of the Press Foundation released Department of Justice documents detailing the procedure for monitoring journalists using the secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. The documents were recently obtained via Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed by Freedom of the Press Foundation and Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University.

The documents reveal that the DOJ is not required to satisfy “a multi-part test” designed to prove they have exhausted all options before targeting a journalist with surveillance, as is the case for obtaining traditional subpoenas, court orders, and warrants against journalists. Instead, Trevor Trimm of the Freedom of the Press Foundation notes, the DOJ only must follow less strict court orders from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance court. FISA court orders are also inherently secret, and targets are almost never informed that they exist,” Trimm writes in a press release regarding the documents.

The secret courts were originally created under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (FISA) in response to reports produced by the Church Committee in 1975. The Senate committee was tasked with investigating the foreign and domestic surveillance operations by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), National Security Agency (NSA) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) during the 1970s. The Church Committee also released detailed reports on the governments Counter Intelligence Programs (COINTELPRO) that were used against activists and influential voices of opposition during the 1950s and ’60s.

“While civil liberties advocates have long suspected secret FISA court orders may be used (and abused) to conduct surveillance on journalists, the government—to our knowledge—has never acknowledged they have ever even contemplated doing so before the release of these documents today,” writes Trimm.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

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