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The West is Trapped in its Own Propaganda

Hillary Clinton Needs a Mirror

By PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS | CounterPunch | May 12, 2011

One of the wishes that readers often express to me came true today (May 11). I was on the mainstream media. It was a program with a worldwide reach–the BBC World Service. There were others on the program as well, and the topic was Hillary Clinton’s remarks (May 10) about the lack of democracy and human rights in China.

I startled the program’s host when I compared Hillary’s remarks to the pot calling the kettle black. I was somewhat taken aback myself by the British BBC program host’s rush to America’s defense and wondered about it as the program continued. Surely, he had heard about Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo detainees, CIA secret torture prisons sprinkled around the world, invasion and destruction of Iraq on the basis of lies and deceptions, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, Libya. Surely, he was aware of Hillary’s hypocrisy as she demonized China but turned a blind eye to Israel, Mubarak, Bahrain and the Saudis. China’s record is not perfect, but is it this bad? Why wasn’t the Chinese Minister for Foreign Affairs criticizing America’s human rights abuses and rigged elections? How come China minds its own business and we don’t?

These questions didn’t go down well. None of the other interviewees or guests thought that Hilary had made a good decision, but even the Chinese guests were not free of the common mindset that frames every issue from the standpoint that the West is the standard by which the rest of the world is judged. By pointing out our own shortcomings, I was challenging that standard. The host and other guests could not escape from the restraints imposed on thought by the role of the West as world standard.

What has happened to the West is that it can see itself and others only through the eyes of its own propaganda. There was a great deal of talk about China’s lack of democracy. As the BBC program was being broadcast, the news intruded that Greeks had again taken to the streets to protest the costs of the bailout of the banks and Wall Street–the rich–being imposed on ordinary people at the expense of their lives and aspirations. The Irish government announced that it was going to confiscate with a tax part of the Irish people’s pension accumulations. It simply did not occur to the host and other guests that these are not democratic outcomes.

It is a strange form of democracy that produces political outcomes that reward the few and punish the many, despite the energetic protests of the many.

Political scientists understand that US electoral outcomes are determined by powerful moneyed interests that finance the political campaigns and that the bills Congress passes and the President signs are written by these interest groups to serve their narrow interests. Such conclusions are dismissed as cynicism and do not alter the mindset.

While the program’s host and guests were indulging in the West’s democratic and human rights superiority, the American Civil Liberties Union was sending out a bulletin urging its members to oppose legislation now before Congress that would give the current and future Presidents of the United States expanded war authority to use, on their own initiative, military force anywhere in the world independently of the restraints imposed by the US Constitution and international law.

In other words, in the great American “democracy,” the president is to become a Caesar.


Paul Craig Roberts was an editor of the Wall Street Journal and an Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury.  His latest book, HOW THE ECONOMY WAS LOST, has just been published by CounterPunch/AK Press. He can be reached at:

May 12, 2011 - Posted by | Civil Liberties, Timeless or most popular


  1. We all need to hammer down on the hypocrisies we see around us.

    Comment by ME | May 12, 2011

  2. The Clintons are the lowest form of life- they are traitors to homeland and fellow Americans, may they rot in hell

    Comment by boycott kosher | May 12, 2011

  3. Comment by boycott kosher | May 12, 2011

  4. […] The West is Trapped in its Own Propaganda « Aletho News This entry was posted in World News. Bookmark the permalink. […]

    Pingback by The West is Trapped in its Own Propaganda « Aletho News | Jonathan Carline's Law Of Power | May 12, 2011

  5. What a ugly looking bitch! As ugly as Madeleine!

    Comment by It is I only | May 12, 2011

    • Well what do expect? Both are rancid jews, with all the degeneracy that entails.

      Comment by peter b | May 12, 2011

  6. When do the People’s Trials for War Crimes start again for the self admitted scoundrels? I would hate to be in an unemployment or application line and miss it!

    Comment by Ghana | May 12, 2011

    • This is true. Force is the only thing people like this understand.

      Comment by 1 4ALL | May 13, 2011

  7. Let me know when the bitching stops
    and the shooting starts.

    All else is pointless.

    Comment by Sun Su | May 12, 2011

  8. Hillary needs a tube of PREPARATION H for a facial pack.

    when the head pops off, pop it in the nearest dustbin and call Bill to get Eric Holder to cover up this one too.

    bet Hu Jintao was ROTFLMAO till his sides split when the stupid illuminati douchebag made that comment to him, eh?

    Comment by NEEDS A PREPARATION H FACE PACK | May 13, 2011

  9. i heard that broadcast — you’re right — the host doesn’t even know he’s a propagandist

    Comment by henry | May 13, 2011

  10. We don’t hear of Economic Democracy. It’s a system that is not well defined but could give us a system that works for all people rather than for a few intraspecies predators as is the case now. Communism and Fascism are forms of feudalism so that’s the sociopath’s dream: A vehicle to screw people. The USSR was financed by these “Dog Species”: Warburds Bank figured well here, I believe. Soviet Literature demonises the “Petit Bourgeoisie” who are in essence, the Middle Class and small businessmen/women. The uneducated and disempowered Working Class are easier to push around if they are kept dumbed down and desperate. The Middle Class are who these sociopathic monopolists really fear: People who can polarise their communities, regions and nation states. Really the Working and Middle Class have a common interest in standing against these true greedy publicity shy monopolistic Wizards of Qz.

    Comment by Brown's Bottom | July 23, 2011


    the U.S. is so over with having scum like this gutter slut as it’s State Dept. spokesperson.

    might as well have Michael ‘SAVAGE’ Wiener out there, purely a zionist whore for ISRAEL every step of the way this slut is. such a piece of human garbage she and her bosses are.


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