Eric Zuesse, originally posted at Strategic Culture
Censorship is how they stay in power — censorship of the truth (not of the lies).
Most ‘democratic’ countries are democratic only in form but not in substance. They have a constitution, but there are infinite numbers of ways to get around it. Such ‘democracies’ have multiple candidates in ‘elections’, and have multiple Parties, but all of the Parties that succeed in becoming represented in the national legislature are funded by various billionaires, who collectively determine which candidates will be adequately funded, and which won’t. So: billionaires are the actual rulers there, because candidates who don’t serve any billionaire won’t stand any chance to become the nominee of any Party. Such candidates will be abandoned by the big money, and therefore would be merely a waste of money for any non-billionaire to donate to. Any such candidate can easily be overwhelmed by the money that’s going to his or her opponents who are backed by billionaires. No candidate who lacks the funds to get his/her message out to the voters stands any chance of winning, in such a ‘democracy’.
Winning public office thus becomes based upon propaganda: lying and censorship (so as to fool the public into thinking the candidate will serve the public instead of his/her top financial backers), which are done both by candidates’ campaigns and by the ‘news’-media that are controlled by the billionaires — the nation’s mainstream (i.e., well-funded) ‘news’-media. That propaganda is a lock-hold on accession to political power. And it is also a lock-hold on maintaining political power. And it is controlled by the billionaires, who are the ultimate political bosses in any such ‘democracy’.
Every recent national political campaign in any ‘democracy’ has been dominated by lying and censorship. Here is how that — the key to control — is enabled to function effectively:
People worldwide trust traditional — print and broadcast — news-media more than internet news-media, but only internet news-media even have the ability to enable readers to access immediately and directly, on their own, the reporter’s news-sources, in order for the reader him-or-herself to be able to verify, or else to disconfirm, on one’s own, how credible those sources — and therefore the article itself — actually are. (Any voter who relies only on billionaires-funded ‘fact-checking’ organizations to ‘verify’ ‘truth’ is no less totally controlled by the billionaires than is one who simply trusts his/her preferred ‘news’-media — that person, too, is totally controlled. Each individual’s active scientific skepticism of all news is essential, in order for the public to become enabled to take control.)
Consequently, in a rational world, the public would restrict itself only to online news-articles that take advantage of this unique new technological ability, which only the internet has — the ability to link to each source wherever there is a questionable allegation being made by the reporter. However, the vast majority of people are instead irrational, and the public therefore trust traditional print-and-broadcast ‘news’-media more than internet media — even more than the internet media which DO provide links to their sources (in other words: which empower their readers to check their sources).
The widespread distrust of information that’s obtained over the internet is the reason why polls show that the public consistently trust broadcast and printed news (billionaires-controlled news) more than news which is available only over the internet.
For example, the latest global Gallup poll, of 150,000 people in 142 countries, was recently released as the Lloyd’s Register Foundation World Risk Poll Report 2019, and on page 147, it shows that people who are using the internet worry more about receiving false information than about anything else — even about fraud — on the internet. 52% of those 150,000 people use the internet, and 57% of that 52% — or 30% of the 150,000 respondents — said that they “worry about” “receiving false information” via the internet. Only 42% of them did not worry about that. By contrast, only 45% of that 52% (users of the internet) worry about “Fraud.” And only 30% of them worry about “Bullying” on the internet. So: distrust of news that’s available only online is very high — the highest concern that users of the internet have. For example, in the United States, the 2019 Ipsos “Trust in Media Poll” found that the net level of trust in news from newspapers and magazines is +9%; from television and radio is +7%; and from online news websites is -13%. There is net distrust only of online-only news-sites.
A major reason for this sad fact is that the vast majority of users of the internet do not restrict their news to only articles that link to their sources; and, so, mere gossip and hearsay on the internet is received by them with the same credibility as serious news-reporting and analysis on the internet is. And there is plenty of gossip and hearsay on the internet, just as there is plenty of it in broadcast and printed news. But the latter — broadcast and printed news — provides the audience with no trustworthy means of verifying its sources, and is therefore intrinsically less trustworthy. (Yet, the mainstream ‘news’ is more trusted than news received only online is; so, deceiving the public is easy for billionaires to do.)
Almost all people accept or reject news mainly on the basis of their personal trust in the given ’news’-medium. If the person is conservative, then only conservative ‘news’-media are trusted; and, if liberal, then only liberal ones are. People choose ‘news’-media in order to confirm their personal prejudices. In other words: they vote, actually, on the basis of sheer faith. They think that their faith is right, and that anything which is opposed to their faith is wrong. They don’t vote on the basis of science (which would demand restricting one’s news to only online news-articles that link to their sources). In fact, billionaires’ ‘news’-media encourage voting on the basis of faith (in religion, race, ethnicity, or any other assumption-laden mythology — ‘solidarity’ with ‘one’s own’ people, ‘us’ instead of ‘them’), instead of on the basis of scientific skepticism of every claim, from everyone.
A major way that this situation is promulgated is by deceiving the public about what causes ‘fake news’ to exist. (After all: as the Lloyd’s Register report noted, that’s the biggest worry the public has about news which can be received only online.) The major ‘news’-media pretend that “fake news” is news that doesn’t come from the major ‘news’-media: they lie to convey that “fake news” is a problem only of non-mainstream media. But, actually, all of the major, or “mainstream,” news-media are owned and controlled by billionaires; and so, the only times when any of them will criticize another of them is when it’s about a partisan (Democratic versus Republican) issue, and never in order to expose a truth that BOTH of the Parties (all of the billionaires) want the public not to know.
A classic example of authentic major fake ‘news’ is that throughout 2002 and even well after the U.S. and its allies invaded Iraq on 20 March 2003, none of the mainstream ‘news’-media were reporting that U.S. President George W. Bush and his Administration were lying through their teeth and misrepresenting the evidence regarding Bush’s claims of “WMD in Iraq”; and, basically, they all were hiding the clear fact that he (and UK’s Tony Blair) were simply lying. They said, instead, that these had been ‘intelligence errors’. The fake ‘news’ came from the Government, and from the ‘news’-media that the billionaires also controlled, and it just kept on coming. America’s and UK’s mainstream ‘news’-media were all pumping lies about ‘Saddam’s WMD’ — they were the “fake news” media, who had stenographically reported those lies from the Government, as truths; and they ALSO were the mainstream — print and broadcast — ‘news’-media. So, ONLY the few members of the general public who had been searching ONLINE (and NOT at the online versions of those fake-‘news’ reports) had even a CHANCE to know that these two Governments (U.S. & UK) were lying through their teeth. Both Democratic Party ‘news’-media and Republican Party ‘news’-media (and Labour Party and Conservative Party ‘news’-media) were lying. And they kept on doing it. The fake ‘news’-media were the mainstream — the print and broadcast — media. And, yet, even today, those are the most-trusted news-media.
One way that the ‘news’-media and their nonprofits further advance the lie about what the source of fake news is, is by their mischaracterizing the issue as being “TV, NEWSPAPERS, RADIO” versus “SOCIAL MEDIA”. Ignored altogether there is the key difference: “Print and Broadcast Media” (or “Mainstream Media” or “Billionaires-controlled Media”) versus independent (Non-Billionaires-controlled) online news-articles that link to their sources (such as the present article does). Unfortunately, many independent news-media themselves mix articles of that type (which links to its sources, as this one does) along with unsourced (or non-linked) articles, and along with youtubed or other video news-reports (which have no links in them), but even some of the latter (videos) are often far superior to the mainstream ‘news’-media; and here are two such examples of that — excellent online-only news-videos, which demonstrate how high the quality of independent online-only news-reporting and analysis can be, even if it fails to provide ways to link to its sources:
I’ve personally tracked down the sources that are identified in both of those major news-reports/analyses, and found 100% truthfulness in both. Together, they demonstrate the gross inadequacy, and even the untrustworthiness, of mainstream ‘news’-media, in the U.S., and in its vassal nations (such as UK). Both of those videos report very important news that none of the mainstream media were reporting at the same time (or even now).
Obviously, social media, such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, are billionaires-controlled and therefore serve the interests — including the political interests — of billionaires; and, so, they are just as motivated to censor-out what billionaires don’t want the public to know as the print and broadcast media are. So: the issue isn’t “social media versus mainstream media” (such as some billionaires-controlled organizations assert) but, instead, billionaires-controlled media versus non-billionaires-controlled news-media (such as you now are reading).
In order to understand how the dictators in ‘democracies’ stay in power, the first thing that needs to be understood is that the dictators are none of the major political Parties, but are the billionaires, because those billionaires — of all major Parties — collectively control the Government. For example, on October 28th, America’s National Public Radio (NPR), a propaganda operation that’s funded by billionaires and by the U.S. Government itself, headlined “Global Conflict Experts See Signs Of Potential Violence Around U.S. Election”, and reported as if the basic American conflict is between the Democrats versus the Republicans and is racial, instead of between the billionaires versus the public and is thus actually class-based. In order to do that, they had to censor-out the key information that is necessary to know in order to be able to understand how America’s politics actually works. That’s not really “news” which is being reported; it is instead lying, and it is done by censoring-out the key facts (such as this) that are necessary in order to be able to understand truthfully what is happening. If the public are blinded to such key facts (such as here), then the billionaires can face no effective resistance, whatsoever. Consequently, reporters whose understanding is deeper than that, won’t be hired by the nation’s mainstream ‘news’-media (or won’t be able to keep their jobs there if they are, such as in this instance, and in this instance).
This isn’t to say that post-election violence won’t happen, but that — if it does happen — the reason for it won’t be actually racial. Any such violence would be a result of suckers of Democratic Party billionaires, and/or suckers of Republican Party billionaires. (In either case, it would be a misdirection of rage, away from the aristocracy, and onto ‘Whites’ or ‘Blacks’.) Censorship is no way to solve the problem, but is instead an essential tool for causing the problem. Censorship is basic for misdirection.
Censorship is the core of any dictatorship, even of ones that pretend to be democratic. The only way around censorship is intelligent usage of the internet. This article has explained basically how that is done. If there aren’t many people who care about getting beyond the propaganda, then how can democracy even become possible? A population that votes only its existing prejudices cannot even conceivably be the citizenry of an authentic democracy. And, so, they aren’t.
Censorship isn’t done only by (for example) destroying Julian Assange for his having made essential truths available to the public. But billionaires-controlled ‘news’-media encourage that — and other types of — censorship, so as to maintain their control over the Government. As long as that control continues, the dictatorship will continue.
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.