Archive for October, 2014
October 31, 2014
“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies, said Jojen. The man who never reads lives only one”
– George R.R. Martin, A Dance With Dragons
There were a variety of pieces on the newstream this week.
For starters, we find Dr. Mercola covering the ever-present issue of antibiotics in large-scale agriculture.
This issues is not only extremely under-reported by the rigged mainstream media, but its also important because of the effects that antibiotics are having on our foods. Past studies have even eluded to there being a 50% chance of you purchasing meat that contains drug-resistant bacteria.
Something families can do if they are worried about the above, is eating organically grass-fed beef, eat/juice fresh fruits and vegetables, while also making sure you are filtering your local water making sure to get rid of the toxin fluoride and other chemicals.
With that in mind, the piece below by Mrs. Sarich showcases more evidence as to why organic foods are superior to genetically modified foods.
A disturbing pattern we have seen is Big Pharma dodging responsibility and engaging in their corrupt ways. Below, Ethan A. Huff details the current attempt of Big Pharma to skirt responsibility regarding Ebola.
Continuing our focus on those undermining common sense, the article below covers the current push by the Susan G. Komen Foundation to promote carcinogen-laden chemicals in a duplicitous way.
Financial issues affect everyone in a variety of ways. The overly systemic issues are covered quite thoroughly by Nomi Prins in her latest article.
That’s it for now.
Make sure you to have a great weekend and spend time with family/friends. Take care.
April 28, 2010
Flashback Friday articles mirrored in-part from other websites will be high-caliber missives not only because they contain extremely pertinent information for our times, but also because those seeking truth may not realize they are available.
Mass media is the most powerful tool used by the ruling class to manipulate the masses. It shapes and molds opinions and attitudes and defines what is normal and acceptable. This article looks at the workings of mass media through the theories of its major thinkers, its power structure and the techniques it uses, in order to understand its true role in society.
Programming Through Mass Media
Mass media are media forms designed to reach the largest audience possible. They include television, movies, radio, newspapers, magazines, books, records, video games and the internet. Many studies have been conducted in the past century to measure the effects of mass media on the population in order to discover the best techniques to influence it. From those studies emerged the science of Communications, which is used in marketing, public relations and politics. Mass communication is a necessary tool to insure the functionality of a large democracy; it is also a necessary tool for a dictatorship. It all depends on its usage.
In the 1958 preface for A Brave New World, Aldous Huxley paints a rather grim portrait of society. He believes it is controlled by an “impersonal force”, a ruling elite, which manipulates the population using various methods.
“Impersonal forces over which we have almost no control seem to be pushing us all in the direction of the Brave New Worldian nightmare; and this impersonal pushing is being consciously accelerated by representatives of commercial and political organizations who have developed a number of new techniques for manipulating, in the interest of some minority, the thoughts and feelings of the masses.”
– Aldous Huxley, Preface to A Brave New World
His bleak outlook is not a simple hypothesis or a paranoid delusion. It is a documented fact, present in the world’s most important studies on mass media. Here are some of them:
Walter Lippmann, an American intellectual, writer and two-time Pulitzer Prize winner brought forth one of the first works concerning the usage of mass media in America. In Public Opinion (1922), Lippmann compared the masses to a “great beast” and a “bewildered herd” that needed to be guided by a governing class. He described the ruling elite as “a specialized class whose interests reach beyond the locality.” This class is composed of experts, specialists and bureaucrats. According to Lippmann, the experts, who often are referred to as “elites,” are to be a machinery of knowledge that circumvents the primary defect of democracy, the impossible ideal of the “omnicompetent citizen.” The trampling and roaring “bewildered herd” has its function: to be “the interested spectators of action,” i.e. not participants. Participation is the duty of “the responsible man”, which is not the regular citizen.
Mass media and propaganda are therefore tools that must be used by the elite to rule the public without physical coercion. One important concept presented by Lippmann is the “manufacture of consent”, which is, in short, the manipulation of public opinion to accept the elite’s agenda. It is Lippmann’s opinion that the general public is not qualified to reason and to decide on important issues. It is therefore important for the elite to decide “for its own good” and then sell those decisions to the masses.
“That the manufacture of consent is capable of great refinements no one, I think, denies. The process by which public opinions arise is certainly no less intricate than it has appeared in these pages, and the opportunities for manipulation open to anyone who understands the process are plain enough. . . . as a result of psychological research, coupled with the modern means of communication, the practice of democracy has turned a corner. A revolution is taking place, infinitely more significant than any shifting of economic power. . . . Under the impact of propaganda, not necessarily in the sinister meaning of the word alone, the old constants of our thinking have become variables. It is no longer possible, for example, to believe in the original dogma of democracy; that the knowledge needed for the management of human affairs comes up spontaneously from the human heart. Where we act on that theory we expose ourselves to self-deception, and to forms of persuasion that we cannot verify. It has been demonstrated that we cannot rely upon intuition, conscience, or the accidents of casual opinion if we are to deal with the world beyond our reach.”
–Walter Lippmann, Public Opinion
by: Christina Sarich
October 30, 2014
For how long will we need to go back and forth in this GMO battle before a sound conclusion is finally met? If you have been following the GMO debate at all, you probably realize that this issue will likely never rest, as numerous studies on both sides of the spectrum (one side showing safety and the other showing danger) will continue to surface. What’s more, this research as well as opinions will be born out of lies or false substantiation. You’ve likely read headlines like these lately and scoffed:
- 2000+ Reasons Why GMOs Are Safe To Eat And Environmentally Sustainable
- GMO Opponents Are the Climate Skeptics of the Left
- Study of 1 Billion Animals Finds GMOs Safe
Or how about comments like this one:
“I used to think that nothing rivaled the misinformation spewed by climate change skeptics and spinmeisters.
Then I started paying attention to how anti-GMO campaigners have distorted the science on genetically modified foods. You might be surprised at how successful they’ve been and who has helped them pull it off.”
Or if you trust one of the most hated companies on the planet, you can go straight to Monsanto’s site and read: An Overview of the Safety and Advantages of GM Foods.
Monsanto openly admits “after 30” whole “years of research” that they are convinced GMOs are safe. Just one type of pine tree lives more than 5000 years, but yea – Monsanto has all of Mother Nature figured out in its 30 years of tinkering with genes.
It’s amazing how many people have been boondoggled by biotech or are simply paid shills to keep the misinformation train choo-chooing along.
Former Biotech Scientist Speaks Out
Vrain will be the first to admit that Monsanto has conducted a lot of studies showing that GMOs are safe, but he changed his own tune about ten years ago when he started reading scientific journals from other countries.
“I started paying attention to the flow of published studies coming from Europe, some from prestigious labs and published in prestigious scientific journals, that questioned the impact and safety of engineered food.”
via: Joseph Farrell
October 30, 2014
There have been important developments in NATO this week; Joseph discusses those French-built Russian aircraft carriers, the recent Russian provocations of NATO, and a little known aspect of German military involvement in Russia
By: Mike Krieger
October 29, 2014
Journalists should be dark, funny, mean people. It’s appropriate for their antagonistic, adversarial role.
– Matt Taibbi, in this New York Magazine article
Reporters on the ground aren’t necessarily ideological, Attkisson says, but the major network news decisions get made by a handful of New York execs who read the same papers and think the same thoughts.
Often they dream up stories beforehand and turn the reporters into “casting agents,” told “we need to find someone who will say . . .” that a given policy is good or bad. “We’re asked to create a reality that fits their New York image of what they believe,” she writes.
– From the excellent New York Post article: Ex-CBS reporter’s book reveals how liberal media protects Obama
Earlier this week, I published a piece titled, Former CBS Reporter Accuses Government of Secretly Planting Classified Docs on Her Computer, which I thought was incredible in its own right, yet the information in that post seems almost trite compared to the flood of information Attkisson has revealed to the New York Post’s Kyle Smith.
The following excerpts from the piece will confirm all of your worst suspicions about mainstream media:
Sharyl Attkisson is an unreasonable woman. Important people have told her so.
When the longtime CBS reporter asked for details about reinforcements sent to the Benghazi compound during the Sept. 11, 2012 terrorist attack, White House national security spokesman Tommy Vietor replied, “I give up, Sharyl . . . I’ll work with more reasonable folks that follow up, I guess.”
Another White House flack, Eric Schultz, didn’t like being pressed for answers about the Fast and Furious scandal in which American agents directed guns into the arms of Mexican drug lords. “Goddammit, Sharyl!” he screamed at her. “The Washington Post is reasonable, the LA Times is reasonable, The New York Times is reasonable. You’re the only one who’s not reasonable!”
Interesting, because as Matt Taibbi notes in the quote at the top, investigative journalists are not supposed to be reasonable. I digress…
In nearly 20 years at CBS News, she has done many stories attacking Republicans and corporate America, and she points out that TV news, being reluctant to offend its advertisers, has become more and more skittish about, for instance, stories questioning pharmaceutical companies or car manufacturers.
Working on a piece that raised questions about the American Red Cross disaster response, she says a boss told her, “We must do nothing to upset our corporate partners . . . until the stock splits.” (Parent company Viacom and CBS split in 2006).
October 30, 2014
“Bernay’s honest and practical manual provides much insight into some of the most powerful and influential institutions of contemporary industrial state capitalist democracies.”
– Noam Chomsky
Propaganda is a tool widely used by those holding positions in many facets of society, from politicians, religious leaders, agents of the state to corporate brass.
Edward Bernays, who is considered “the father of public relations”, penned his magnum opus Propaganda originally published in 1928.
This particular piece of work is dynamic because this book details how the mass manipulation of the human subconscious can place.
In a world where the propaganda vice-grip has reached unfathomable levels, knowledge of the form in which this takes place is not only imperative, but an individual responsibility.
Although glossed over by many, propaganda in it’s many forms – news, tv shows, songs, radio stations, advertisements, magazines, and more – has become an undeniable part of our society structure.
Webbing the populace at will, this tool, and all its functions, have served to greatly increase the influence/power of most individuals and institutions spreading it.
As VigilantCitizen eloquently states:
“Bernay’s trailblazing marketing campaigns profoundly changed the functioning of American society. He basically created “consumerism” by creating a culture wherein Americans bought for pleasure instead of buying for survival. For this reason, he was considered by Life Magazine to be in the Top 100 most influential Americans of the 20th century.”1
Propaganda, in it of itself, is not negative per se. However, if lies are embedded within the messages being shared, then this tool can have very nefarious and wide reaching consequences for entire populations.
The book’s strength lays in showcasing the methods being studied by Bernays nigh a century ago, and how those methods were or might be employed.
Simply stated, if one wishes to understand how the rulers of our time operate and how they use and extend part of their power, then Propaganda is for you.
Personally, this book should be mandatory for anyone’s education. Only by knowing what you face and how it is employed can one learn how to overcome it.
To sum up this work, it is best to leave you with this Orwellian quote by Bernays:
“The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. …We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society. …In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons…who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind.”
― Edward L. Bernays, Propaganda
Other Suggested Reading
Mass Control – Engineering Human Consciousness by Jim Keith
American Meat Production Uses More Antibiotics Than Ever, Despite Growing Threat of Antibiotic-Resistant Disease in Consumers
October 29, 2014
The featured Frontline News documentary investigates the roots and ramifications of the growing crisis of antibiotic resistance. The US uses nearly 30 million pounds of antibiotics each year to raise food animals.1, 2 This accounts for about 80 percent of all antibiotics used in the US.3
The ramifications of this routine practice can be seen in hospital wards across the nation, as it is one, if not the primary driver of antibiotic-resistant disease in humans.
According to CDC statistics,4 two million Americans are infected with antibiotic-resistant bacteria each year, and at least 23,000 of them die as a result of those infections.
In my view, this is a very compelling reason to switch to organic, grass-fed (pastured) varieties, as growth promoting drugs such as antibiotics are not permitted in organic farming.
Large-Scale Agriculture and Hospitals Breed Drug-Resistant Superbugs
One organism alone—methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)—now kills more Americans each year than the combined total of emphysema, HIV/AIDS, Parkinson’s disease, and homicide.5
The victims include young, otherwise healthy people, raising suspicions that the MRSA infections originate from the food they eat. Drug-resistant tuberculosis, urinary tract infections, and gonorrhea are also on the rise.
As reported by Frontline, researchers have found that people living close to confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs) also suffer drug-resistant infections at much higher rates than others, again suggesting that antibiotic-resistant bacteria originate from large-scale agriculture.
Hospitals have traditionally been the primary source of dangerous infections. At present, one in 25 patients end up with a hospital-acquired infection, and many of these infections are drug resistant.
But it’s the use of antibiotics in agriculture that breeds these hardy bacteria most efficiently. And by allowing this practice to continue, simple infections will become increasingly lethal, and even minor routine surgeries become exceedingly risky.
One of the most prestigious research hospitals in the US recently struggled with an outbreak of a highly lethal antibiotic-resistant superbug, Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase (KPC), which spread from one patient to another in a highly complex and in some cases untraceable pattern.6 What’s worse, many of these bacteria, including KPC, have developed resistance to multiple drugs.
A 2013 paper by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) titled “Antibiotic Resistance in Foodborne Pathogens,”7 report that between 1973 and 2011, there were 55 antibiotic-resistant foodborne outbreaks in the US. More than half of these outbreaks involved pathogens resistant to five or more antibiotics!
By: Nomi Prins
October 28, 2014
The recent spike in global political-financial volatility that was temporarily soothed by ECB covered bond buying reveals another crack in the six-year-old throw-money-at-the-banks strategies of politicians and central bankers. The premise of using banks as credit portals to transport public funds from the government to citizens is as inefficient as it is not happening. The power elite may exude belabored moans about slow growth and rising inequality in speeches and press releases, but they continue to find ways to provide liquidity, sustenance and comfort to financial institutions, not to populations.
The very fact – that without excessive artificial stimulation or the promise of it – more hell breaks loose – is one that government heads neither admit, nor appear to discuss. But the truth is that the global financial system has already failed. Big banks have been propped up, and their capital bases rejuvenated, by various means of external intervention, not their own business models.
Last week, the Federal Reserve released its latest 2015 stress test scenarios. They don’t even exceed the parameters of what actually took place during the 2008-2009-crisis period. This makes them, though statistically viable, completely irrelevant in an inevitable full-scale meltdown of greater magnitude. This Sunday, the ECB announced that 25 banks failed their tests, none of which were the biggest banks (that received the most help). These tests are the equivalent of SAT exams for which students provide the questions and answers, and a few get thrown under the bus for cheating to make it all look legit.
Regardless of the outcome of the next set of tests, it’s the very need for them that should be examined. If we had a more controllable, stable, accountable and transparent system (let alone one not in constant litigation and crime-committing mode) neither the pretense of well-thought-out stress tests making a difference in crisis preparation, nor the administering of them, would be necessary as a soothing tool. But we don’t. We have an unreformed (legally and morally) international banking system still laden with risk and losses, whose major players control more assets than ever before, with our help.
The biggest banks, and the US and European markets, are now floating on more than $7 trillion of Fed and ECB intervention with little to show for it on the ground and more to come. To put that into perspective – consider that the top 100 global hedge funds manage about $1.5 trillion in assets. The Fed’s book has ballooned to $4.5 trillion and the ECB’s book stands at $2.7 trillion – a figure ECB President, Mario Draghi considers too low. Thus, to sustain the illusion of international systemic health, the Fed and the ECB are each, as well as collectively, larger than the top 100 global hedge funds combined.
Providing ‘liquidity crack’ to the financial system has required heightened international government and central bank coordination to maintain an illusion of stability, but not true stability. The definition of instability is this epic support network. It is more dangerous than in past financial crises precisely because of its size and level of political backing.
During the Panic of 1907, President Teddy Roosevelt’s Treasury Secretary, Cortelyou announced the first US bank bailout in the country’s history. Though not a member of the government, financier J.P. Morgan was chosen by Roosevelt to deploy $25 million from the Treasury. He and a team of associates decided which banks would live or die with this federal money and some private (or customers’) capital thrown in.
The Federal Reserve was established in 1913 to back the private banking system in advance from requiring future such government injections of capital. After World War I, a Laissez Faire policy toward finance and speculation, but not alcohol, marked the 1920s. before the financial system crumbled under the weight of its own recklessness again. So on October 24, 1929, the Big Six bankers convened at the Morgan Bank at noon (for 20 minutes) to form a plan to ‘save’ the ailing markets by injecting their own (well, their customer’s) capital. It didn’t work. What transpired instead was the Great Depression.
After the Crash of 1929, markets rallied, and then lost 90% of their value. Liquidity froze. Credit for the masses was as unavailable, as was real money. The combined will of President FDR and the key bankers of the day worked to bolster people’s confidence in the system that had crushed them – by reforming it, by making the biggest banks smaller, by separating bet-taking arms from those in which people could store, and borrow money from, safely. Political and financial leaderships collaboratively ushered in the reform measures of the Glass-Steagall Act. As I note in my most recent book, All the Presidents’ Bankers, this Act was not merely a piece of legislation passed in spirited bi-partisan fashion, but it was also a means to stabilize a system for participants at the top, middle and bottom of it. Stability itself was the political and financial goal.
Through World War II, the Cold War, and Vietnam, and until the dissolution of the gold standard, the financial system remained fairly stable, with banks handling their own risks, which were separate from the funds of citizens. No capital injections or bailouts were required until the mid-1970s Penn Central debacle. But with the bailout floodgates reopened, big banks launched a frenzied drive for Middle East petro-dollar profits to use as capital for a hot new area of speculation, Third World loans.
By the 1980s, the Latin American Debt crisis resulted, and with it, the magnitude of federally backed bank bailouts based on Washington alliances, ballooned. When the 1994 Mexican Peso Crisis hit, bank losses were ‘handled’ by President Clinton’s Treasury Secretary (and former Goldman Sachs co-CEO) Robert Rubin and his Asst. Treasury Secretary, Larry Summers via congressionally approved aid.
Afterwards, the repeal of the Glass Steagall Act, the mega-merging of financial players, the explosion of the derivatives market, and the rise of global ‘competition’ amongst government supported gambling firms, lead to increased speculative complexity and instability, and the recent and ongoing 2008 financial crisis.
Ethan A. Huff
October 29, 2014
The same drug manufacturers that stand to profit immensely from the sale of Ebola vaccines say they require full legal immunity from any potential lawsuits that might arise when people are harmed by various adverse effects from these “emergency” drugs.
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) CEO Andrew Witty told World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Margaret Chan that his corporation, which is currently leading the way in producing Ebola vaccines, shouldn’t have to shoulder any of the burden of responsibility for their safety.
Witty maintains, in other words, that GSK should be allowed full access to the financial benefits associated with selling Ebola vaccines to the public, but with absolutely none of the risk. And his company and others will likely get what they want, since they hold remarkable sway in the political realm.
“I think it is reasonable that there should be some level of indemnification because the vaccine is essentially being used in an emergency situation before we’ve all had the chance to confirm its absolute profile,” Witty told BBC.
“That’s a situation where we would look for some kind of indemnification, either from governments or from multilateral agencies.”
Taxpayers funding development of high-profit drugs for which drug companies will not be held liable
There are currently no approved drugs or vaccines for Ebola, which is why GSK and others have been racing to pump new ones through the pipeline. This process, which normally takes five or six years to complete, is being done in about five or six months, hence concerns over the safety of the final products.
But the shady reality is that governments, not vaccine companies, are actually the ones financing the development of experimental Ebola drugs and vaccines. And they are doing so on the taxpayer dime, which means vaccine companies are not only developing their vaccines for free but also gaining access to unlimited profit potential driven by fear.