Thursday, April 10, 2014

April 10: The impact of our news media....

Check out in the letter of the day in Letters to the Editor. It has ever piece of illogic and myth about Ukraine I have seen in our press. For a combination of illogic and myth, take a look at the writer's analogy of Putin and Hitler. Both, he says, were military men.

Wow! That says it all, doesn't it? (actually, Putin was not military. He was state police - but we'll let that one pass.) Well, that certainly proves Putin was evil, just like Hitler and all those other military men who have come to political power - George Washington, the Duke of Wellington, Winston Churchill, J.F. Kennedy, President Eisenhower, and Lester B. Pearson.

And the way   he took the Crimea? That was exactly how Hitler took Czechoslovakia - and here the letter repeats the old story that if only Chamberlain had stood up to Hitler and defended the Czechs, there would have been no World War 2.

Actually, Chamberlain was almost as smart as people who write letters to the editor. He knew the importance of blocking Hitler. But there were two reasons he couldn't do it. One was the appalling state of the British armed forces. Any army he sent would have been slaughtered. For the other reason, just look at a map to see where Czechoslovakia is. (Yes. I know it all began with Sudetenland. Just trying to keep it easy to follow.)

The whole letter is full of errors and non sequiturs. And every one of them came from the North American news media.

Even the headline ( written by an editor) is propaganda. "Where will Putin's restless eye wander next?"
That suggests that Putin has done nothing but look for conquests. So give us a list of all these conquests. While you're at it, make a list of all the countries the US has invaded, droned, overthrown governments....

How often have you seen newspaper articles critical of the US for its murders, interference and
destruction in Vietnam, Cambodia, all over Africa, Syria, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Haiti, Guatemala? By comparison, Putin is a virgin, sitting at home, and waiting for his first phone call.

Never underestimate the impact of a lying press on the general population. And never underestimate the power of that lying to send us into a war that has nothing to do with us - and that can't be won, anyway.

The United States has been an empire building country since its birth. The empire began with native lands on the continent, then tried to move to us. Failing that, it turned to Latin America, then to Hawaii as a stepping stone to Asia, then to an inexcusably brutal conquest of The Phillipines - with its eyes firmly fixed on China.

At the end of the World War Two, the ambitions went global - to take over all the old and fallen European empires and then, by the 1990's to the concept of The New American Century - the conquest of all the world.

But greed and arrogance and capitalism have made the American economy a flaming disaster. As well, its military has not performed well in recent wars.

That's why it has given up conquest of some countries like Libya and Syria. Instead, they undermine them, and attempt to destroy them as nations.

But the gung-ho imperialists are still determined to conquer the world.  And it has to be done quickly before the US declines too far. And there lies the  danger.

Putin may have dreams of conquest. I have no idea. But he's obviously in no rush. The US is in a rush.

That's why it is disturbing to note that so much of the threatening talk has come from the US and NATO -  and Stephen Harper.

Any military action over the Ukraine could very lead us into nuclear war.

Obviously, there are some very sensible and necessary things to do. One would be to drop the street bully chatter. The second would be for the US to public give up on the world conquest delusion. The third would be establish permanent and peaceful mechanisms to settle these disputes.

Is that a bit idealistic? Yes. More than a bit. Do you have an alternative?


The editor is all in a tizzie because some immigrants don't want to pledge allegiance to the Queen. She is, warns the editor, the symbol of Canadian values?

You bin talkin' to Pauline Marois, Mr. editor? What Canadian values  are these that we all have to believe in? Do we have a charter of Canadian values?

And precisely how does the Queen symbolize them? And doesn't she symbolize Australian and New Zealand values, too? How are they different? In fact, Mr. Editor, what are you talking about?

Speaking of Canadian values, we now have special ops forces in our military. Actually, we've had them for seventy years or so. But now they're being much enlarged and more closely integrated to work with US special ops.

US special ops work as assassination squads, illegally invading countries the US is not at war with in order to kill people the president thinks should be killed. They are also used to stir up rebellions and coups (as in Ukraine). But we aren't told about any of that because special ops report only to the prime minister, and the minister of defence.

In other words, special ops is a private army of thugs  who can be used for illegal wars without our knowledge.

They can also be loaned out, as they were in Guatemala, to beat up, torture and/or murder workers in foreign countries like Congo and much of Latin America who are not as nice to their Canadian-owned mining company as they should be.  (Mr. Harper would never allow that, of course.)

As an aside, we are told that our soldiers died in World War Two to protect our basic rights. One of those was the right of the Canadian people to decide, through parliament, when to go to war.

American special ops go to war (illegally) almost daily. Canadian special ops will be integrated closely with American special ops. You do the math.

The Canadian military has become nothing more than an appendage to the American military. It is in no way a defender of Canadian interests. It's a servant to the US. We just pay for it. Now, with this development of special ops, the Americans are free to use our military in any way they choose, legal or illegal.

I wonder if that's one of the values the Queen symbolizes?

Yesterday's irving press had a letter from a businessman who said he travelled all over the US and Canada and saw no pollution or other problems with either oil or shale gas. Maybe he should read National Geographic for a hint. It listed "chemical valley", the oil refining area around Sarnia, Ontario, as the single most polluted spot on the face of the earth.

Oh, yes, right in the centre is a native reserve. The people of the reserve were not consulted over even told about what what going to be done with their valley. No wonder native peoples demonstrate.


Other readings would tell him we don't get many inspector's reports on problems with shale gas or oil because we don't have nearly enough inspectors. Governments all provide rules that are "the toughest in the world". But they won't vote the money to enforce them.

I skipped the usual run through the Irving press today. It's even worse than usual. But it gets boring to say that.


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