Aletho News


Shafting The Poor

By Willis Eschenbach | Watts Up With That? | February 5, 2021

Let me start with a couple of the most callous and heartless quotes that I know of. Here’s a description from Politico of the first one:

President Barack Obama’s Energy secretary unwittingly created a durable GOP talking point in September 2008 when he talked to The Wall Street Journal about the benefits of having gasoline prices rise over 15 years to encourage energy efficiency.

“Somehow,” Chu said, “we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe.”

And here’s the second quote, from President Obama:

“Under my plan of a cap-and-trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket, regardless of what I say about whether coal is good or bad, because I’m capping greenhouse gases”

In agreement with the beliefs of President Obama and Secretary Chu, and a vain attempt to fight the imaginary menace of CO2, the countries of Europe have driven up the price of energy. This is supposed to make people use less of it, and thus reduce CO2 emissions.

As a result of the European policies, the current energy price situation looks like this:

Not a pretty picture …

So consider the effect of this on the poor. To begin with, the poor spend a much larger part of their income on energy than do the rich.

Now, the energy prices in Europe are more than twice what they are in the US. So if the US doubled to match the fantasies of Secretary Chu and President Obama, the richest fifth of the nation would only be paying 10% of their income for energy … but the poorest fifth of the nation would be paying close to half of their income for energy. And as I pointed out about the poorest of the poor in my post “We Have Met The 1% And He Is Us“,

Those people have no slack. They have no extra room in their budgets. They have no ability to absorb increases in their cost of living, particularly their energy spending. They have no credit cards, no credit, and almost no assets. They have no health insurance. They are not prepared for emergencies. They have no money in the bank. They have no reserve, no cushion, no extra clothing, no stored food in the basement, no basement for that matter, no fat around their waist, no backups, no extras of any description. They are not ready for a hike in the price of energy or anything else.

The result of all of these factors is what is called “energy poverty”. That’s where you don’t have enough energy to keep your home warm. That’s where you’re a single mom with three kids and your old car you need to get to work drinks gas faster than your ex-husband drank whiskey … so if gas prices double your kids will do without something important. That’s where you and your family sit in the cold and the dark and shiver because you can’t pay your energy bills.

And that’s where a study from the Jacque Delors Institute says (emphasis mine):

During this winter of 2020-2021, hundreds of millions of Europeans are constrained to stay at home because of lockdowns and curfews instituted to contain the propagation of COVID19. For millions of them, this means staying in poorly heated houses, which causes both discomfort and a threat to their own health.

This policy paper gives an overview of the state of energy poverty in the European Union (EU) and the way this issue is currently addressed by Member States and by the EU. While it appears that energy poverty has generally been decreasing over the last years, in 2019 there were still over 30 million Europeans who claimed to be unable to heat their home adequately in the winter.

Thirty million Europeans, many of them pensioners, many of them kids, all of them poor, sitting in unheated houses … that’s about the population of California. Or for the folks across the pond, it’s about the population of Hungary, Austria and the Czech Republic combined. Again per the report, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Greece, Portugal and Cyprus are the countries with the highest share of the population who are unable to heat their homes.

Now, there’s an old saying, “No pain, no gain.” Me, I think that’s crazy because I’ve had lots of painless gains. But if there is pain, well, there should at least be some gain to go along with it. So … shall we take a look at the purported gain in the question of CO2 emissions?

I mean, all those countries signed on to the Paris Climate Discord, they all have followed President Obama’s and Secretary Chu’s theories and drove their energy prices through the roof to reduce greenhouse gases, so now at the end of the day there must be some real gains in per capita CO2 emissions, right?

Here you go:

Thirty million Europeans are freezing in the winter, unable to heat their homes, and for what?

For nothing. Zip. Niets. Diddley-squat. Ingenting. Zero. Nada. Rien. Nichts. Not one thing.

Despite Europe creating widespread energy poverty, despite the US not being in the Paris Agreement, the US has reduced emissions more than any of the countries shown above. Europe is condemning old people and children to shiver in the dark and cold, and for absolutely no gain at all.

Look, I don’t think CO2 is the secret knob that controls the climate. I think that’s a simplistic scientific misrepresentation of a very complex system. As a result, I think that the “War On CO2” is a destructive, costly, and meaningless endeavor.

However, perhaps you do think that the climate, one of the more complex systems we’ve ever tried to analyze, is ruled by just one of the hundreds of different factors affecting the system. If so, I presume you think the European actions are justified because you believe you will be helping the poor people in the year 2050 or 2100.

So … if those are your motives I ask you, I beg you, I implore you, don’t wage your war on CO2 by screwing today’s poor to the floor! 

Because I can assure you, possibly helping tomorrow’s poor by actually hurting today’s poor is a crime against humanity, one you absolutely don’t want to have on your conscience.

My best to all, regardless of your views regarding the climate control knob,


February 6, 2021 Posted by | Economics, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | | 3 Comments

Pro-Mass-Vaxxing Scamster Fauci

By Stephen Lendman | February 6, 2021

Biden regime chief medical advisor Anthony Fauci is hostile to human health, well-being and safety.

Weeks earlier, he pretended to be vaxxed against covid on his left arm.

Moments later, he pointed to an area on his right arm, saying it’s where he was experiencing “injection site soreness.”

He lied about being vaxxed and soreness.

He consistently lies about hazardous to health covid vaccines, most recently saying:

“I feel extreme confidence in the safety and the efficacy of this vaccine (sic), and I want to encourage everyone who has the opportunity to get vaccinated (sic).”

He’s well aware that covid vaxxing provides no protection and risks serious/irreversible harm to health.

It’s why he faked being vaxxed. Other prominent US officials did the same thing.

Fauci is more witch doctor than the real thing, a figure who never treated a patient, who’s indifferent toward human health, who promotes what risks irreversible harm from following his advice.

In cahoots with Pharma and US dark forces, he prioritizes self-enrichment — profiting hugely from mass deception.

As NIAID director, he transformed the agency into an incubator for Pharma’s drug development — including hazardous covid vaccines.

Throughout his public life, he’s been a profiteering con artist, now close to Biden/Harris and chief regime medical advisor.

His modus operandi is more Josef Mengele than Albert Schweitzer.

In cahoots with Bill Gates and other US dark forces, he wants everyone vaxxed with toxins that risk serious harm to health including death.

His claim about safe and effective covid vaccines is one of many Big Lies he’s infamous for — why he can never be trusted.

There’s nothing remotely safe and effective about toxic-laden/DNA altering covid vaccines.

In its Global Health Review, even pro-dirty business as usual Harvard said the following about hazardous mRNA vaccines:

“Potential side effects could include chronic inflammation, because the vaccine continuously stimulates the immune system to produce antibodies,” adding:

“Other concerns include the possible integration of plasmid DNA into the body’s host genome, resulting in mutations, problems with DNA replication, triggering of autoimmune responses, and activation of cancer-causing genes.”

No mRNA vaccine was ever approved for human use — despite years of research.

No emergency exists to justify their use.

Even mRNA proponents admit that there’s an inadequate understanding of inflammation and autoimmune reactions from their use that risks serious harm to health.

There’s no way for gene-altering vaccines to be safe, why independent scientific experts consider their use frankenvaxxing.

Fauci fronts for Pharma. Dismissive toward safe and effective hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) and ivermectin in treating seasonal flu-renamed covid, he promotes hazardous to health mass-vaxxing.

Highlighting the risk, Joseph Mercola said the following:

“To avoid becoming a sad statistic, I urge you to review the science very carefully before making up your mind about this experimental gene therapy.”

“(R)emember that the lethality of COVID-19 is actually surprisingly low, (especially) for those under the age of 60.”

“If you’re under the age of 40, your risk of dying from (covid) is just 0.01%, meaning you have a 99.99% chance of surviving the infection.”

“And you could improve that to 99.999% if you’re metabolically flexible, insulin sensitive, and vitamin D replete.”

“So… what are we protecting against with a COVID-19 vaccine?”

“These mRNA vaccines aren’t designed to prevent infection, only reduce the severity of symptoms.”

“Meanwhile, they could potentially make you sicker once you’re exposed to the virus, and/or cause persistent serious side effects.”

“(Y)ou may regret for the rest of your life, which can actually be shortened” by covid vaxxing.

People are dying post-vaxxing.

Vaxxing for covid mostly likely killed baseball Hall of Famer Hank Aaron at age-86.

Elderly individuals are most vulnerable to be harmed because of their weakened immune systems.

We’re being lied to by Fauci and other frankenvaxxing promoters — including Big Media.

Increased censorship is the new abnormal.

Truth and full disclosure about hazardous covid vaccines are airbrushed from mainstream reporting.

Preserving and protecting health and well-being requires rejection of what may destroy them.

February 6, 2021 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , , , | Leave a comment

There WAS a color revolution in the US after all – its architects now boast they ‘fortified’ the 2020 election

By Nebojsa Malic | RT | February 5, 2021

The 2020 US presidential elections wasn’t “rigged,” oh no, but “fortified” by a conspiracy of activists united in saving “Our Democracy” from the Bad Orange Man, now proud to share their story in a friendly tell-all piece in TIME.

“There was a conspiracy unfolding behind the scenes,” writes Molly Ball – a biographer of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, by the way – in TIME magazine this week, describing it as a “vast, cross-partisan campaign to protect the election – an extraordinary shadow effort.”

Ball’s article reveals a lot, from why there were no street riots by Democrats either on November 4 or on January 6 – the organizers of this “conspiracy” stopped them – to who was behind the push to alter election rules in key states and set up mail-in voting, who organized “information” campaigns about the results of the election, and who even threatened election officials into making the “right” decision to certify the vote.

While everyone – myself included – was focused on the summer riots as a possible “color revolution,” they turned out to be misdirection. According to TIME, the real action was taking place behind the scenes, as Democrat activists and unions joined forces with NeverTrump Republicans, Chamber of Commerce, corporations, and Big Tech to make sure the 2020 election turns out the way they wanted. They call this a victory of democracy and the will of the people, of course, for no one is ever a villain in their own story.

“Their work touched every aspect of the election,” Ball writes, from getting states to “change voting system laws” and fending off “voter-suppression lawsuits,” to recruiting “armies” of poll workers and pressuring social media companies to “take a harder line against disinformation.”

Then, after Election Day, “they monitored every pressure point to ensure that Trump could not overturn the result.” Alarmed yet? Maybe you should be.

So who are these shadowy saviors of Our Democracy? One of them is union organizer Mike Podhorzer of AFL-CIO, a traditional Democrat powerhouse. Another is Ian Bassin, associate White House counsel in Barack Obama’s first administration. The roster of his “nonpartisan, rule-of-law” outfit called Protect Democracy includes a lot of Obama lawyers, a John McCain campaign aide, an editor from the defunct neocon Weekly Standard, and someone from SPLC, while among their advisers is the NeverTrump failed presidential candidate and ex-CIA spy Evan McMullin.

Bear that in mind when you read Bassin’s quote that “Every attempt to interfere with the proper outcome of the election was defeated,” (emphasis added) but “it’s massively important for the country to understand that it didn’t happen accidentally. The system didn’t work magically. Democracy is not self-executing.” Chilling words.

A leading member of this effort is Norm Eisen, another White House counsel under Obama. The pro-Trump Revolver News even raised the alarm about Eisen plotting a “color revolution” in September – but by then it was too late, even if anyone had been paying attention.

By then, the National Vote at Home Institute – an organization barely two years old, and part of the effort – had already instructed secretaries of state across the US with “technical advice on everything from which vendors to use to how to locate drop boxes,” and even provided them “communications tool kits,” i.e. talking points.

In November 2019 – a full year before the election! – Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg hosted “nine civil rights leaders” for dinner, one of whom was Vanita Gupta, Obama’s assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights. It was part of this shadowy coalition’s campaign for “more rigorous rules and enforcement” on social media platforms – just in case you were wondering how Trump ended up deplatformed, or the New York Post’s story about Hunter Biden’s laptop got suppressed before the election.

Podhorzer’s messaging efforts were informed by Anat Shenker-Osorio, who “applies tools from cognitive science and linguistics in her work with progressive organizations globally,” according to her 2018 fellowship bio from George Soros’s Open Society Foundation. Ironically, as part of their pressure on Big Tech Democrats had whipped up a moral panic about super-targeted “Russian” internet memes that somehow “influenced” the 2016 election – yet Ball’s article says that two groups involved with the conspiracy “created state-specific memes and graphics, spread by email, text, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok, urging that every vote be counted.”

Though Ball doesn’t mention it specifically, those Twitter and Facebook “pre-bunking” labels about safety of mail-in ballots and the winner not being known on Election Day are also the activists’ talking points.

Remember how Republican observers were thrown out of the ballot-counting facility in Detroit? Reports at the time said it was because of overcrowding, but the Time article reveals that a Democrat activist mobilized “dozens of reinforcements” to “provide a counterweight” to them, so eventually “racial-justice activists from Detroit Will Breathe worked alongside suburban women from Fems for Dems and local elected officials.”

It was activists who came up with a strategy of denouncing any challenge to Detroit vote counts as racist, too.

When President Donald Trump asked Michigan’s Republican-majority legislators to challenge the results, Eisen called it “the scariest moment” of the election, and the “democracy defenders” sprung into action.

Eisen’s lawyers dug up dirt on the two lawmakers invited to Washington, activists hounded them at airports, NeverTrump Republicans made calls to party friends, and Bassin’s outfit commissioned an op-ed threatening criminal charges by Michigan’s Democrat AG – whose office then retweeted it. The two were even picketed at the Trump Hotel in DC. The brigading eventually worked, as Michigan Republicans agreed to certify the elections – and other contested states followed.

Perhaps the most intriguing part is buried towards the end. Ball reveals that she got a text from Podhorzer – the AFL-CIO organizer – on the morning of January 6, hours before what the Democrats would describe as “insurrection” by Trump supporters at the US Capitol, saying that the “activist left” was “strenuously discouraging counter activity” in order to “preserve safety and ensure they couldn’t be blamed for any mayhem.”

How did Podhorzer know there would be “mayhem,” hours before the “storming” of the Capitol that Democrats claim Trump “incited” at the rally outside the White House at noon? It’s a mystery.

What’s not a mystery is the result of the “conspiracy” Ball has revealed: a de facto one-party state in which Democrats hold absolute power at every level of government and seek to prosecute dissent and disenfranchise the opposition.

Last month, with no inkling of the behind-the-scenes operation just revealed in Time, I wrote of a non-kinetic “fifth-generation” civil war that had unfolded as “a battle for hearts and minds, a series of psychological operations that played out on the media, political and economic fronts.” I argued it had successfully swapped the American Republic for something called “Our Democracy,” which maintains the form but has a radically different content.

One of the “heroes” of Ball’s piece, NeverTrump Republican Jeff Timmer, has a quote in the article about how “Our democracy only survives if we all believe and don’t look down,” referring to the cartoon character Wile E. Coyote.

It’s an interesting admission, as the coyote is the villain of those cartoons – and the one actually immune to the effects of gravity is the roadrunner bird. But you’re not supposed to notice this – and besides, noticing will soon be a crime in Our Democracy.

Nebojsa Malic is a Serbian-American journalist, blogger and translator, who wrote a regular column for from 2000 to 2015, and is now senior writer at RT. Follow him on Telegram @TheNebulator

February 6, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Progressive Hypocrite | | 1 Comment

The Mainstream Bubble

By Ralf Arnold, translation by S. Robinson | OffGuardian | February 6, 2021

At the beginning of the already memorable year 2020, a term forced its way into public and private consciousness, which should increasingly determine and overshadow all of our lives: The “novel corona virus”, also called SARS-CoV-2. The name was officially announced by the WHO on February 11th. After that everything happened in quick succession.

At first I saw the pictures of Chinese people with masks only in the Tagesschau (the flagship evening news program by ARD, one of the two main public broadcasters in Germany; S.R.), which was not an unusual sight, but soon corona also reached our newsroom.

On the day when the first suspected corona case surfaced in our region, I was urged by our news chief to use it as a “lead story”, i.e. as the first report in the next news program.

At that time I was already extremely skeptical and found it excessive to use a mere suspected case as the lead story. However, I couldn’t escape the general excitement around me and put the message on “one”. But a bad feeling remained and that should intensify massively over the next few weeks.

A dynamic set in that seemed unstoppable.

More and more suspected cases, then confirmed corona cases, at some point the first death in Germany, some time later the first in our region. And more and more I noticed that not only colleagues, but also people in my private environment let themselves be infected by a vague fear and even panic.

Not that I dismissed the deaths, the so-called “corona deaths”, but didn’t we have many deaths in every flu epidemic, especially among the elderly? I checked our archives and found that we had only a handful of reports in three months during the 2018 flu epidemic. More than 25,000 people are said to have died of the flu at that time.

The now famous Johns Hopkins University dashboard was quickly featured on all television and online news. The so-called “new infections” were simply accumulated on this. It became clear to me that the graph with the constantly rising curve contained more psychological effects rather than factual information. In this way the curve could never sink again, in the best case it would stay horizontal. But that didn’t seem to bother anyone.

Part of the basic training of a journalist is that he never reports figures without meaningful reference. He must always provide comparisons, references and proportionalities so that the viewer / listener / reader can contextualise the information. I stuck to it for many years, and it seemed a matter of course for other journalists too. However, I saw this basic principle practically vanish into thin air in the first weeks of the pandemic. Absolute numbers, always only absolute numbers, without any meaningful reference.

To this day, people like to say that the USA is the country most severely affected by corona, with mere reference to the absolute numbers of infections and deaths, regardless of the size of the population, to which the numbers are rarely put in relation.


Our newsroom also adopted all these counting methods with a sleepwalking naturalness. Everything that was communicated by the health authorities, the district administration and the regional government was adopted and reported without questioning and without doubt. Almost all critical distance disappeared, and the authorities became supposed allies in the fight against the virus.

I have to point out, however, that I have never been called or written to directly by politicians to influence me in any way. There were only the usual press releases from the ministries and offices, which are of course written from their point of view. Nor have I been pressured by superiors, at least not directly. The whole thing is far more subtle, as will be shown.

March was the start of the first restrictions: major events were banned and soon after the first lockdown was imposed. Almost all journalists of the “mainstream”, so the so-called “leading media”, including my editorial team, seemed to immediately develop an ‘inhibition to bite’ towards politicians and the authorities. Why this uncritical reluctance among journalists?

I can only explain it to myself that particularly the pictures from Bergamo and New York also put the experienced editors and reporters into an emotional state of shock, even if they might not admit it. But they, too, are only people who are afraid of illness and death, or who worry about elderly or sick relatives; this was repeatedly an issue in conversations with colleagues. They rallied around the government, the RKI (Robert-Koch-Institute; the German equivalent of the CDC; S.R.) and the health authorities, as if one really had to stick together now to combat this dire, external threat.

You couldn’t throw a club between the legs of those in charge, who were having a difficult time already, by fundamentally questioning their measures – that was how the attitude seemed to me.

In our conversations, too, it was said more and more frequently that “the government is really doing a good job”. Most were firmly convinced that the lockdown and the restrictions of our fundamental rights were necessary and certainly only temporary. I heard only a few skeptical voices.

And then there were the TV interviews with politicians. Esteemed journalists, who in conversation with politician XY eagerly nodded and verbally agreed when they presented their assessment of the situation and made their demands. I couldn’t believe my eyes and ears!

What was the motto of the legendary television journalist Hanns-Joachim Friedrichs?

“You can recognize a good journalist by the fact that he does not make common cause with anything, not even with a good cause; that he is everywhere, but doesn’t belong anywhere.”

There was nothing left of this guiding principle, and very little in the way of tough and critical inquiries. But even that didn’t seem to bother anyone, yes to not even attract attention.


In the news of all the leading media, including ours, important, little words like “alleged”, “supposed”, “apparently” suddenly died out. For example, the Tagesschau said that Twitter wanted to delete “false information about corona” in the future. There is clearly no “alleged” or “supposed” as an addition, because it is assumed that Twitter can judge without any doubt what is false and what is correct information in terms of the corona virus (or in general). Which of course is absurd.

Sometimes I made my colleagues in the newsroom aware of such things and sometimes even earned a nod of approval, but often just a helpless shrug.

In this day and age, news reports need to be short, easy to understand, and interesting. We have been trained to do this for many years. This has a lot of advantages, namely the ease of understanding on the part of the consumer. But there are also significant disadvantages, namely that the news reports are written more and more simplistically. Deeper connections and backgrounds or complicated differentiations are increasingly disappearing. The trick is to shorten and omit.

From early summer, one could increasingly observe the phenomenon that the corona virus and the measures against it were equated in the media. For example, it was said: “Because of the corona pandemic, the municipalities are collecting significantly less taxes” or: “The WHO fears that the corona pandemic will plunge one and a half million more people into poverty.”

This is wrong, because not the pandemic, but the lockdowns have this effect, regardless of whether they are justified and appropriate. By ignoring this distinction, however, the anti-corona measures of the governments are being turned into something inevitable and without alternative and are no longer called into question.

The cause and therefore the scapegoat is always the virus, not politics.

This practice also crept into our newsroom. Advice from me was kindly noted, but nobody really took it to heart. I had the freedom to formulate this differently, but again nobody seemed to notice the small but subtle difference.

It is also often said that Covid-19 patients in the intensive care units “have to be ventilated”. Have to? They are being ventilated, that’s the fact. The attending doctor has to decide whether this is really medically necessary, and this question is quite controversial. There are a number of well-known experts who warn against intubating too quickly. So here too, as a journalist, you should remain neutral.


In spring 2020 I began to increasingly question the counting method of the RKI and thus also of the government. I pointed out to my superiors that all numbers such as the “new infections” reported daily or the “R-value” were basically worthless if we did not relate them back to the number of tests performed. They took note of this, but thought no further verification or inquiries were necessary, because the trend of rapidly increasing numbers could not be misunderstood, regardless of how much was tested, it said.

The number of so-called “new infections” rose from week 11 to week 12 from 8,000 to 24,000. At the end of March, the RKI announced (after multiple inquiries by the online magazine Multipolar ) that the number of PCR tests had almost tripled from 130,000 to 350,000 during the same period. The relative increase in new infections was thus far less than the absolute. There had been no “exponential increase”.

When the number of “new infections” continued to fall in early summer, the politicians still constantly conjured up the risk of the “second wave” if one were to ease the efforts – that is to say, the restrictions contrary to fundamental rights. In fact, most of my colleagues also agreed with these fears, while to me – who was no less of a medical and epidemiological layperson – it was pretty clear that there would be no second wave in summer, but an even bigger in autumn / winter because that is when the number of respiratory diseases routinely increase sharply. It was easy to foresee.

The whole issue of the PCR tests and the alleged “new infections” has to this day not been questioned by the leading media. Although over time there have been more and more studies and statements by virological and epidemiological experts harshly criticising the PCR test and its particular use, hardly any of it has penetrated our mainstream bubble. The Cycle Threshold values ​​that were probably far too high in the tests, which give ample room to possible manipulation, were not an issue at all.

I suspect a lot of my colleagues haven’t even heard of it.

In general, the terms continue to be mixed up in this context. Even after ten months of corona, many colleagues still do not seem to know the difference between the SARS-CoV-2 virus and the lung disease Covid-19. “Infected” (that is, those who have tested positive) are often equated with “sick”, regardless of whether they have symptoms or not.

The term “recovered” is also adopted uncritically by the authorities, although it implies that those affected were actually all sick, which is highly doubtful: On the one hand because there is most likely a proportion of false-positive test results that should not be underestimated, and, on the other hand, because many “infected” people do not develop any symptoms at all and it is therefore very dubious to call them sick.


In the meantime, all kinds of regulations have been introduced in our broadcasting corporation: mask requirements, physical distancing between desks, many colleagues have moved to home office, disinfectants everywhere and so on. This and the regular, ominous-sounding situation assessments by the management, of course, still exert a psychological influence and pressure on every employee. A subtle fear is built up here too, whether intentionally or unintentionally. There is literally an invisible threat in the air that is difficult to shield yourself from.

In addition, television screens are running in the newsroom and in other offices, on which reports about corona are broadcast almost continuously.

Everywhere reporters, pictures from intensive care units, running texts with the latest, ever higher numbers – it is almost impossible to avoid this influence. In addition, there are the newspapers and agency reports that also constantly report on corona, here a study, there another apocalyptic warning from a politician, and again and again sad individual stories which are particularly highlighted.

Although we continue to have daily conferences, now mostly by telephone, right from the start – at least during the conferences in which I participated – the current narrative of the national and regional government was never fundamentally questioned, namely that we have an extremely dangerous pandemic that can only be controlled, or at least slowed down, by tough government measures. Why is that?

Everyone probably knows the effect of “selective perception”. For example, if you or your wife are pregnant, you will most likely see more and more pregnant women on the street. Or if you fall in love with someone who drives a certain make of car, then you suddenly discover that make of car, in the same color, permanently on the streets. This effect also occurs in journalism.

Years ago, for example, there was a serious incident in Germany with several attack dogs biting a three-year-old girl to death. At that time there was great shock, a political discussion about the consequences was set in motion, a “character test” for dogs and stricter rules for dog owners were demanded, the media reported about it for days and weeks. And at the same time, suddenly more and more cases of dog attacks were reported. Sudden reports of even very minor incidents came from the police.

One would have thought that all dogs in Germany, like Hitchcock’s birds, would have agreed to meet for a general attack.

What happened? The general perception had become sensitised and extremely focused, on all levels. A dachshund bit someone in the calf in the park, they immediately reported this to the police and reported the owner, the police immediately passed the report on to the press, which turned it into a news report, although it was ultimately a triviality.

Due to the alarmed attitude and the narrowed perception of all those involved, however, the triviality that would normally have fallen under the table was given an oversized significance. And the readers, listeners or viewers noticed and thought: “Not again! This is piling up now.”

The same effect can of course also be observed in crime reporting. The media user can get the impression, for example, that the situation in the country is getting worse and more dangerous and that you can hardly dare go out in the streets. It might very well be that the pure statistics show that the total number of violent crimes continues to decline. That contradicts the subjective impression, but strangely enough, hardly anyone calms down. The pictures and reports of individual fates weigh far more than the sober numbers.

You can guess what I’m getting at.

In my opinion, in the corona crisis we are basically experiencing the same effect in a global, completely exaggerated and downright paranoid dimension. And that affects just about everyone: the common man, the police officer, the journalist, the politician and even the doctor and the scientist. Nobody is per se free from it. Unless he breaks free and dares to think for himself and think outside the box.

But there is a widespread journalistic herd instinct. Most journalists look at the daily newspapers that are delivered to the editorial office every day. And of course these are all newspapers that are mainstream: Welt, FAZ, Frankfurter Rundschau, Süddeutsche [the leading national papers; S.R.] and the regional newspapers.

In the evening, one watches “heute” [the evening news program of ZDF, the second of the two main public broadcasters in Germany; S.R.] and the “Tagesschau”, followed by the relevant talk shows, from Anne Will to Maischberger [two of the leading talk shows; S.R.] Mainstream almost always dominates there too. Real critics of the corona narrative are, with rare exceptions, categorically not invited.

Still, most of the journalists I know are of the opinion that the discussions there are quite controversial. But they do not notice – for lack of comparison – that these controversies are only fig-leaf discussions. It is only discussed when and to what extent the measures should be relaxed, but the corona narrative itself remains untouched.

All of this is not to say that there is no disease or death, but the perception of this is downright neurotically excessive. There are many reports on the Internet from the last few years that describe completely overcrowded hospitals, intensive care units at the limit and overburdened crematoria. With appropriate media support, one could have caused great panic in the population back then.

Another effect is that the media now also present their journalistic content online. There it is easier and faster for everyone to access than would be the case with hardcopy newspapers and broadcasts on radio or television. This means that this content can be easily copied and adopted.

As long as it is not personal, lengthy reporting or comments, but “only” news reports, it is easy to copy-paste these into your own reports, at least parts of them. Again and again you can find almost identical formulations and messages from different providers. Even if one does not copy-paste, one is tempted to orient oneself at the selection of topics by colleagues from other leading media.


I cannot say for sure whether the corona virus can be proven with the PCR tests, where it ultimately comes from, how dangerous it really is and what the right measures are to be taken against it. But this not what this is about. I do not deny that there is a bad illness, that people die from it and that you have to take it seriously.

And that brings us to the next emotive word, the so-called “corona denier” (Corona-Leugner). A term that has been gaining ground since the summer and is now regularly used by the mainstream media to label critics of the government’s anti-corona measures. The comparison with the “God denier” and the “Holocaust denier” is obvious.

While the term “God denier” has long been history, at least in our society, the term “Holocaust denier” is still relevant and it is no coincidence that the “corona denier” is involuntarily associated with it. There is now broad consensus that one cannot deny God at all, but only not believe in him. The “Holocaust denier” is the only generally recognized exception in which journalists use the word “deny”. Otherwise it is a taboo, at least it should be. Quite simply because it contains “lie” (lügen) in the stem of the word and thus implies a lie.

Responsible journalists know that defendants never deny the allegations in court, they contest them. This should be the case even after a final judgment, because courts can also be wrong and lawsuits can be reopened.

The term “corona denier” is now infamous in three ways. Firstly because of the linguistic similarity to the socially ostracized “Holocaust denier”, secondly because the corona critics are generally claimed to deny the existence of the virus (which is not the case with the vast majority of them) and finally because they are also accused of conscious lying. This is not just bad style, it is perfidious and ensures that the rifts in society are deepened even further.

An equally dubious term used as defamatory framing is that of the “conspiracy theorist”. It basically says everything and nothing. It can be someone who believes in chem trails or that the Americans’ moon landing was only staged, but it can also be someone who exposes a Watergate scandal or who claims (as happened) that Iraq did not hoard any weapons of mass destruction, and who is later confirmed in his assumptions.

Basically every investigative journalist has to be partly a conspiracy theorist, because of course the rulers of this world do not want to have all their activities published and therefore keep them secret. In this respect, it is somewhat grotesque that the media adopt the rulers’ fighting term and use it thoughtlessly.

Alleged conspiracy theorists are also made fun of internally. Many colleagues are joking that they are crazies, who believe that Bill Gates wants to open a vaccination station with Hitler on the back of the moon. Or similar childish nonsense.

A negative highlight was the reporting of the “leading media” about the large demonstrations in Stuttgart, Leipzig and especially Berlin in the summer. It started with the number of participants. Actually, it is common for journalists to name both the number of demonstrators as announced by the police and the number of demonstrators as announced by the organisers (which is naturally always higher) at rallies.

On August 1st 2020 in Berlin, however, these details diverged so widely that one had to become suspicious. The “leading media” solved the problem by only naming the small number from the police and ignoring the high numbers that the organisers and participants mentioned. How high the number actually was is still unclear today, but here too the media acted against journalistic practices.

Were a few right-wing radicals and Reich citizens among the demonstrators? Were there many or were they even dominating the action? Numerous video streams showed that a large, if not overwhelming, proportion of the demonstrators apparently came from the middle of society. On average a little older, educated and from a middle-class background. There are also surveys and studies that confirm this.

Of course, you can argue about it, but in our editorial team, too, the matter was clear: the focus of the reporting was clearly on the right-wing radicals and Reichsbürger.

One reason for this can be found in the increasingly important part of online media. In contrast to newspapers, television and radio, it is possible to analyse exactly how many hits an individual post has, or how many “likes” on the Facebook pages, which are now also operated by all leading media.

As a result, the spectacular, and the supposedly scandalous, comes more and more to the fore because it promises more attention and thus more clicks. Various media critics say that almost everything in our society is increasingly being scandalised, no matter how casual. If so, then it is surely largely due to the “leading media” (including their tabloids).


Why is the “mainstream media” a closed bubble? Because they always get their information from the same, pre-sorted sources – and that is largely the news agencies that belong to the same bubble. They are like the gatekeepers of published opinion. That has always been the case, of course, but in the corona crisis it has become clearer than ever.

The major agencies mainly report on what supports the official corona narrative and what is propagated and implemented by the vast majority of governments around the world.

For example, almost only studies from around the world are reported which highlight the danger of the virus and the effectiveness of tough government measures. A Chinese study of around ten million people in Wuhan, which found that non-symptomatic transmission of the virus (almost all government measures are based on this assumption) was as good as irrelevant, did not feature in the agencies. It could only be found in the alternative online media.

By contrast, a study by the US-American CDC, which had contrary results, was reported. Numerous studies that showed that government lockdowns have virtually no impact on the infection rate have also been ignored by the agencies so far.

For me personally in my work this means that I cannot use any studies or information that I have found by myself on the Internet, because I would almost certainly be accused of using an uncertain source. But if DPA, AP, AFP or Reuters reported the study, I would be more or less on the safe side and could report it. If there were inquiries, I would refer to the agency. This could still lead to discussions as to whether the study is credible and whether it is worth reporting, but that would be part of a normal journalistic decision-making process.

Yes, it does happen again and again that critical experts or politicians are interviewed in the leading media or that the RKI and the federal government are criticized. But mostly it’s just fig leaves and they don’t really get to the heart of the matter.

There are statements from leading editors-in-chief of the public services that say that people like Wolfgang Wodarg or Sucharit Bhakdi [two high-profile critics with an accomplished medical / research background; S.R.] are generally not to be invited to talk shows on the subject. The bubble should stay as tightly sealed as possible.


Again and again I wonder why almost all of my colleagues so willingly and uncritically adopt this narrative from the government and from a few scientists (selected by the government) and disseminate it further. As already mentioned, concern for your own health or that of relatives certainly plays a role. But there is more.

In the last few years, something called “attitude journalism” has emerged. It is an intellectual and moralising arrogance that I think is spreading more and more. You simply belong to the “good guys”, to those who are on the “right side”. One believes that one has to instruct the mistaken citizen.

It is no longer a question of neutrality, but of representing the “right cause”, and surprisingly often this coincides with the interests of the government. The sentence by Hanns-Joachim Friedrichs mentioned above has even been completely reinterpreted in the meantime, in the sense of “attitude journalism”.

But this is increasingly alienating journalists from a good part of their clientele.

In the 1990s, the red carpet was rolled out to us reporters, editors, and presenters when we showed up anywhere in the country. Today we almost have to be happy when people don’t shout “Lying press!” [Lügenpresse; a term adopted by the Nazis in the Third Reich for the Jewish, communist, and foreign press; S.R.]. Of course, this term is wrong and should be rejected because of its history, but we journalists play a large part in the increasing alienation.

To be fair, the aforementioned “attitude journalism” only applies to some of the journalists, but mostly to their prominent representatives. Many of my colleagues seem to be overwhelmed by the complexity of the subject. Not intellectually, but rather because there is no time to dig into these things alongside the daily routine work. Close to impossible if you still have to do homeschooling with the children in the evening. Others simply lack interest in the subject.

In any case, one reason is the fear of attracting negative attention through overly critical statements. The self-reinforcing momentum of the mainstream bubble ensures that hardly anyone wants to swim against the current. Although a good number of the editors are on permanent contracts, there is great concern about the consequences. As I can observe in myself.

A fundamental problem with the mainstream bubble is that it either ignores or suppresses what is outside the bubble or perceives and interprets it from within that bubble. And so most mainstream journalists know the statements and positions of critical thinkers like Wodarg and Bhakdi (to name just two of many) only from reports in the mainstream media, which are of course biased accordingly. Hardly anyone takes the trouble to actually draw from the numerous alternative sources.


This report is of course only a subjective assessment. Most of my fellow journalists would see it completely differently. However, I am not so concerned here with assessing the danger of the corona virus or the appropriateness of government measures. My concern is that in the corona crisis, in my opinion, journalistic standards and principles have been increasingly thrown overboard, as I have tried to at least indicate.

This in turn ensures that the media have become virtually meaningless as a democratic corrective, which in turn plays into the hands of political aspirations to power.

George Orwell is reported to have said that journalism is when you publish something that someone does not want published. Everything else is propaganda. Measured against this claim, it has to be said that the mainstream media in the corona crisis to 99 percent only deliver propaganda.

I myself have the naive hope of still being able to make a difference, in whatever way, because freedom of the press is in and of itself an extremely important asset in a democratically free society. I still believe in that.

The author of the following text has been an editor and newscaster for public broadcasting for many years and writes here under a pseudonym. He reports from the inner workings of a newsroom during the corona crisis. The article was originally published by the German online magazine Multipolar. Culture-specific explanations have been added by the translator.

February 6, 2021 Posted by | Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , | Leave a comment

Bernays and Propaganda

By Larry Romanoff for the Saker Blog | February 6, 2021

Many years ago, the Jewish-American political commentator Walter Lippmann realised that political ideology could be completely fabricated, using the media to control both presentation and conceptualisation, not only to create deeply-ingrained false beliefs in a population, but also to entirely erase undesirable political ideas from the public mind. This was the beginning of not only the American hysteria for freedom, democracy and patriotism, but of all manufactured political opinion, a process that has been operative ever since. Lippmann created these theories of mass persuasion of the public, using totally fabricated “facts” deeply insinuated into the minds of a gullible public, but there is much more to this story. An Austrian Jew named Edward Louis Bernays, who was the nephew of psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud, was one of Lippmann’s most precocious students and it was he who put Lippmann’s theories into practice. Bernays is widely known in America as the father of Public Relations, but he would be much more accurately described as the father of American war marketing as well as the father of mass manipulation of the public mind.

Bernays claimed “If we understand the mechanism and motives of the group mind” it will be possible “to control and regiment the masses according to our will without their knowing about it”. He called this scientific technique of opinion-molding the ‘engineering of consent’, and to accomplish it he merged theories of crowd psychology with the psychoanalytical ideas of his uncle Sigmund Freud. Bernays regarded society as irrational and dangerous, with a “herd instinct”, and that if the multi-party electoral system (which was fabricated by a group of European elites as a population control mechanism) were to survive and continue to serve those elites, massive manipulation of the public mind was necessary. These elites, “invisible people”, would have, through their influence on government and their control of the media, a monopoly on the power to shape thoughts, values, and responses of the citizenry. His conviction was that this group should flood the public with misinformation and emotionally-loaded propaganda to “engineer” the acquiescence of the masses and thereby rule over them. According to him, this manufactured consent of the masses, creating conformity of opinion molded by the tool of false propaganda, would be vital for the survival of democracy. (1) (1a) (2)

Bernays wrote, “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.” He stated that in America, people are governed, their minds molded, their tastes formed, their ideas suggested, largely by men they have never heard of. He claimed, “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. In almost every act of our daily lives 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.” (3)

In his main work titled ‘Propaganda’, (4) (4a) which he wrote in 1928, Bernays argued that the manipulation of public opinion was a necessary part of democracy in which individuals were inherently dangerous (to the rapacity of the elites) but could be harnessed and channeled by these same elites for their economic benefit. He wrote further that “No serious sociologist any longer believes that the voice of the people expresses any … wise idea. The voice of the people expresses the mind of the people, and that mind is made up for it by … those persons who understand the manipulation of public opinion. It is composed of inherited prejudices and symbols and clichés and verbal formulas supplied to them by the leaders. Fortunately, the … politician is able, by the instrument of propaganda, to mold and form the will of the people.” He clearly believed that virtually total control of a population was possible, and perhaps easy to accomplish: “So vast are the numbers of minds which can be regimented, and so tenacious are they when regimented, that (they produce) an irresistible pressure before which legislators, editors, and teachers are helpless.”

And it wasn’t only the public masses that were ‘inherently dangerous’, but a nation’s leaders fit this description as well, therefore also requiring manipulation and control. Bernays realised that if you can influence the leaders of a nation, either with or without their conscious cooperation, you can control the government and the country, and that is precisely where he set his sights. Bernays again: “In some departments of our daily life, in which we imagine ourselves free agents, we are ruled by dictators exercising great power. There are invisible rulers who control the destinies of millions. It is not generally realized to what extent the words and actions of our most influential public men are dictated by shrewd persons operating behind the scenes. Nor, what is still more important, the extent to which our thoughts and habits are modified by authorities.” He went on to tell us that “The invisible government tends to be concentrated in the hands of the few because of the expense of manipulating the social machinery which controls the opinions and habits of the masses.” And in this case, the “few” are the wealthy elites, their even wealthier bankers, and their brethren who control the media, publishing and entertainment industries.

US President Wilson was desperate to fulfill his obligations to his handlers by putting the US into the First World War as they wished, but was having little success with public opinion at home; few Americans wanted to enter the European war. In 1917 Wilson founded what was called The Committee on Public Information, of which Bernays became a star member. It was Bernays’ vast propaganda schemes and his influence in promoting the patently false idea that US entry to the war was primarily aimed at “bringing democracy to all of Europe”, that proved so successful in altering public opinion about the war. Thanks to Edward Bernays, American war marketing was born and would never die.

Until the First World War, these theories of creating an entirely false public opinion based on misinformation, then manipulating this for population control, were still only theories, but the astounding success of propaganda by Bernays and his group during the war laid bare the possibilities of perpetually controlling the public mind on all matters. The “shrewd” designers of Bernays’ “invisible government” developed a standard technique for what was essentially propaganda and mind control, or at least opinion control, and infiltrated it throughout the US government, its departments and agencies, and its leaders and politicians. Coincident with this, they practiced infecting the leaders of every identifiable group – fraternal, religious, commercial, patriotic, social – and encouraging these men to likewise infect their supporters.

Bernays was apparently stunned by the outstanding success of his democracy slogan and hate campaign in swaying public opinion in favor of war, and so immediately began to apply his model to peacetime enterprises. “In applying his uncle’s Freudian theories to deal with public conceptions, Bernays realised that provoking a fear of communism and then manipulating the public’s emotions toward it, could be a sure recipe for success in the widespread engineering of popular opinion and control of the population. This theory was so powerful that it became a weapon of its own during the cold war.” The term ‘propaganda’ had acquired a poor reputation so Bernays created and promoted the term ‘Public Relations’, but of course his processes were no such thing. Bernays’ PR ethic involved psychological manipulation and control of the public mind through cleverly-devised – and thoroughly false – propaganda.

Bernays carries the blame for more than American entry into the two world wars, having been instrumental in paving the way for the US cannibalisation and military colonisation of much of the world, and for the US installing and supporting the dozens of brutal military dictatorships around the world. His first international project was helping to engineer the US overthrow of the popular elected government of Jacobo Arbenz in Guatemala. At the time, the Rockefellers’ United Fruit Company and various US elites and international financiers owned most of Guatemala including 70% of all the arable land, the communications facilities, the only railroad and shipping port, and controlled most exports. When Arbenz commenced expropriations and land redistribution, Bernays developed a massive propaganda campaign that colored Arbenz as communist, a terrorist, an enemy to democracy, a blot on humanity, and much more, to the extent that American public opinion supported an outrageous travesty and one of the most brutal violations of human rights in US history. Bernays’ template has been used about 70 times with US invasions of that many nations, which is one source of the vast disconnect between what the American people believe their government has done and what it has actually done. As a side note, Guatemala appealed to the United Nations to stop the Americans’ massive interference in their country, a plea that was sympathetically received by UN Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjold who proved troublesome for the US. He would do so again a few years later, and would be assassinated by the CIA for his trouble.

I discussed earlier the black and white mentality that pervades America. Much of this is supported by the witch-hunting versions of Christianity that Americans have embraced, but much of the blame must be laid on Bernays’ propaganda methods. Bernays himself asserted that propaganda could produce rapid and strong emotional responses in the public, but that the range of these responses was limited because the emotional loading inherent in his propaganda would create a kind of binary mentality, eventually forcing the population into a programmed black and white world – which is precisely what we see in the US today. This isn’t difficult to understand. In a discussion of a landscaping option for our garden, we could have a range of dispassionate responses from antipathy to adoration, but when Bernays flooded the public with fabricated tales of Germans killing babies, the range of potential responses was not dispassionate but rather entirely emotional and would be limited to either abhorrence or perhaps a blocking of the information. In a sense, our emotional switch will be forced into either an ‘on’ or ‘off’ position, with no other reasonable choices. We see this in debates on subjects like global warming, where positions do not correspond to educational or employment circumstances, nor to experience, but tend to be strongly emotional responses along ideological and political lines with precisely the kind of binary mentality Bernays predicted.

It is interesting to note that the manipulators eventually became the manipulated. Wilson, in his eagerness to manipulate public opinion in favor of war, failed to realise he was himself being manipulated by his handlers, by these same elite propagandists whose war ambitions he was fulfilling, as well as other schemes they had already planted in his mind. The puppeteer became the puppet, and the practice became permanent. The elite few, as Bernays called them, realised early on the potential for control of governments, and in every subsequent US administration the president and his White House staff, the politicians, the leaders of the military and intelligence agencies, all fell prey to this same disease of shrewd manipulation. Roosevelt’s “intense desire for war” (5) (6) (7) in 1939 was the result of this same infection process and, once infected, he of course approved of the infection of the entire American population. George Bush with Iraq and Obama with Libya and Syria are not different. Walter Lippmann and Edward Bernays succeeded beyond their wildest expectations.

Bernays was very correct in stating that a society’s ability to participate in a democracy was dependent on how well-informed the society was, but Americans fail to appreciate that it is ignorance and not knowledge or education that protects the existence of multi-party political systems. That is why American leaders, controlled by the same “invisible government” and with a fully-compliant elite-owned media, have intentionally misrepresented their current policies and actions to the public, while their “elite few” specialised in massive historical revisionism, especially American history in the world and the effects of that history on other nations. By keeping Americans ignorant and uninformed, their minds filled with foolish and false myths, and forever distracted by irrelevancies, American leaders and their puppet-masters have used Bernays’ theories to control public opinion and beliefs with lies, religion, patriotism and emotional propaganda. It was very much an “engineered ignorance” created by a continuing program of misinformation, manipulation and deception, a shrewdly-planned subversion of the American public.

The almost overwhelming political-religious ideological fog permeating America today is due to generations of institutionalized deception and propaganda, and is the direct cause of much of the renowned ignorance of the American people. Their capitalist ideology as well, is rooted in economic misconceptions and false propaganda, with the result that almost no Americans today have any understanding of the real (and largely criminal) reasons for their nation’s economic success. The astonishing extent of the binary polarisation of politics and government is another example, yet few Americans have any understanding of their condition. As one author noted, “The wealthy in America have created an inherently imbalanced system that is exploitable by the wealthy and they are working through the use of propaganda and misinformation to convince Americans that the system is just, or, if anything, unfairly biased toward the poor.” And again, “The economic system that America has developed is dependent on the exploitation of foreign countries and the acquisition of foreign resources, which is why (the US) pursues a strategy of global preeminence.” He went on to state that the foreign policy of the American Right-Wing has been developed through extensive propaganda and exaggeration of foreign threats in order to maintain the conditions for public support and to justify the suppression of dissent.

I have written before that no Right-Wing government could survive in the full light of day with all truths exposed, because most of these truths are bitterly anti-social and designed only to create a flow of a nation’s wealth to the relatively few members of the elites and financiers. In order to function at all, a Right-Wing government like that in the US must be increasingly secretive and rely ever more heavily on Bernays and on his propaganda in order to produce in the population both his engineered consent and engineered ignorance, without which a democracy could not survive. This is so true that after World War II, the US military heavily restricted media control in occupied Germany and Japan because it recognized that the media could easily educate citizens to the dangers of the American presence both at home and in Europe. This veil of secrecy has been carried to an extent that the American and international elites have created what one writer called a massive framework of lies that functions as an arena within which the desired propaganda ideas are presented to the American people as information, but where the reality is very different from that in which American leadership functions. The same writer stated so perfectly, “Within this framework of lies the world appears to be a simplistic place of good and evil. The feeling of Americans that we are the most successful people on earth, and that America is the most successful country, is used to support the idea that America’s policies are inherently altruistic because our culture tells us that success is the measure of goodness. What is actually the case, though, is that America is successful precisely because American policy is not altruistic.”

The next essay in this series will outline in detail the beginnings – and the devastating results – of Bernays’ initial efforts.

Mr. Romanoff’s writing has been translated into 28 languages and his articles posted on more than 150 foreign-language news and politics websites in more than 30 countries, as well as more than 100 English-language platforms. Larry Romanoff is a retired management consultant and businessman. He has held senior executive positions in international consulting firms, and owned an international import-export business. He has been a visiting professor at Shanghai’s Fudan University, presenting case studies in international affairs to senior EMBA classes. Mr. Romanoff lives in Shanghai and is currently writing a series of ten books generally related to China and the West.

February 6, 2021 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Full Spectrum Dominance, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular | | 1 Comment

Revoking CGTN’s Licence is Attack on Freedom of Speech, Part of Broader UK-China Row

By Ekaterina Blinova – Sputnik – 06.02.2021

On 4 February, the Office of Communications, the UK government-approved regulatory body commonly known as Ofcom, announced that it had withdrawn the licence for China Global Television Network (CGTN) to broadcast in the UK.

China Global Television Network has been banned by Ofcom in the UK on the pretext that Star China Media Limited (SCML), the licence-holder for the broadcaster, did not have editorial responsibility for the latter’s output; and that an entity called China Global Television Network Corporation (CGTNC), which exercises general control over the broadcaster, cannot hold the licence since it is controlled by the Chinese government.

On 5 February, the Information Department of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs accused the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) of pushing “fake news” in its 29 January coverage of the People’s Republic’s tackling the pandemic. According to the ministry’s statement, the BBC video linked COVID-19 with politics and hyped up topics concerning the origins of the virus. Beijing urged the BBC to offer public apologies to China, adding that it “reserves the right to take further measures“. In response, the BBC said it stood by the story, rejecting the accusations of “fake news or ideological bias”.

Freedom of Speech is Under Attack

The revocation of licence for CGTN seems surprising given that the regulator did not mention any complaint regarding the content provided by the broadcaster, according to Earl Rasmussen, executive vice-president of Eurasia Centre. When it comes to CGTN’s links to the Chinese Communist Party, one should bear in mind that the BBC has an obvious connection with the British government, the scholar adds.

Indeed, according to the BBC website, four of the non-executive members are specifically appointed as members for each of the nations of the UK, and “the chairman and the non-executive members for the nations are appointed by HM The Queen on the recommendation of ministers while the other members of the Board are appointed by the BBC through the Board’s Nominations Committee”.

So, when one talks about one’s editorial independence, one can hardly say that the BBC is “independent” in this respect, says Andy Vermaut, a Belgian human rights activist and political commentator. He suggests that the UK is “preparing a new cold war, where China and the Chinese voice in society is cut short and another dimensional voice is not allowed”, adding that “this is diametrically opposed to the British model which supposedly promotes freedom of the press”.

“What channel and country will be next?” Vermaut asks.Although London could regard CGTN’s narrative as “pretty unpleasant” it’s unclear why the UK decided to ban it “because after all, this was a satellite station”, according to Andrew Tettenborn, professor of Law at Swansea University.

“I believe this is politically motivated and a move to steer the narrative that is presented to the public, essentially a form of censorship to silence dissident or countering voices,” Rasmussen says. “In a free and open society it is important that we are able to obtain differing perspectives and to promote a diversity of thought. However, the UK has now lost the perspective and voice of the world’s largest economy and one of the most globally influential countries. It is a sad day for the freedom of the press, freedom of speech and democracy.”The trend of limiting “the spectrum of conversation” goes beyond Ofcom’s actions, warns Gordon Dimmack, an independent media reporter: “Media freedoms in the UK and worldwide have been constricted ever more so over the past few years, and I expect that to continue”, he adds in an apparent reference to the US Big Tech wiping out accounts of former President Donald Trump and his ardent supporters in the wake of the Capitol Hill riots, and suppression earlier of The New York Post’s reporting of the supposed foreign business dealings of Joe Biden’s son, Hunter.

Revocation of CGTN’s Licence is Part of a Broader Trend

Ofcom’s move is yet another sign of deteriorating relations between London and Beijing, deems Kerry Brown, professor of Chinese studies and director of the Lau China Institute at King’s College, London.

“I think the UK is aligned with America on a relatively soft target because it’s kind of saying that it’s going to do something like America did with Xinhua and other news agencies about 18 months ago,” the professor says. “This is not a kind of huge move because the CGTN wasn’t a big player. It’s not important for Britain. It’s a way that Britain wants to show solidarity with America. And also the ruling Conservative Party in Britain shows that they’re trying to be tough on China without any hugely consequential outcomes at the moment”.Although the Johnson government previously indicated that it was willing to enhance UK-China ties in the post-Brexit era, tensions between the two countries have escalated over the past few years. Thus, No 10 abruptly reversed its plans to use 5G Huawei equipment in its next-generation wireless networks because of pressure from Washington. The UK also joined the US-led chorus of nations who pinned the blame for the pandemic spread on Beijing and questioned the coronavirus’s origins.

To complicate matters even further, in 2020 the UK offered a path to citizenship for around 3 million Hong Kongers with British National (Overseas) status, accusing the People’s Republic of breaking the terms of the 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration after Beijing formally adopted a new security law in Hong Kong. Once the British scheme came into force in January 2021, China declared that it would no longer recognise the passports of British national overseas citizens as a travel or ID document, and “reserves the right to take further actions”.

China is Facing Growing Challenges from Western & Indo-Pacific States

Beijing is unlikely to ignore Ofcom’s insult and may take it out on the BBC, believes Jeff J. Brown, editor of China Rising Radio Sinoland: “Beijing could possibly react by reducing the number of its staff in-country, but would be unlikely to kick them out”, he suggests.

Citing the Chinese Foreign Ministry statement accusing the BBC of political bias, Kerry Brown suggests that this move could be seen as a backlash for stripping CGTN of its broadcasting licence.

“One way China will hit back is by basically attacking the credibility of the BBC,” he says. “The BBC has been a big problem for China for many decades. I think they’re basically escalating their kind of language towards the BBC. One of the issues is that obviously China is very sensitive about this responsibility for the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak and has said that it’s been unfairly blamed and it was kind of not willing to share information”.Though it would appear that Beijing sees the UK now “as easier to attack because it’s not in the EU” and “a more isolated target”, China is now facing a growing challenge from a number of states, aside from the EU, including the US, Australia and others, according to the professor.

On 22 November, the UK’s influential conservative think tank Policy Exchange issued a report calling upon British allies and partners to team up in order to confront China’s rise and advocating the British naval build up in the South China Sea along with the US forces. According to the think tank, the report “reflects a broad consensus of views on Britain’s role in the Indo-Pacific region” voiced by former political and military leaders of the UK, Canada, the US, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, India, Sri Lanka, and Indonesia.

“I don’t think that [China’s] argument with the UK is necessarily going to escalate, but I don’t think it’s going to improve”, Brown says. “I think that the relationship is now in a period of long-term negativity. And I don’t think that that’s going to change for some while. I think this is the new normal”.

February 6, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , | Leave a comment

Western pundits believed post-Maidan Ukraine would serve as an ‘example’ for Russia – in reality, it’s become a cautionary tale

By Paul Robinson | RT | February 6, 2021

Many Russian liberals and foreign pundits saw Ukraine’s 2014 ‘Maidan’ as an event that would inspire change in Moscow. Today, as an increasingly dysfunctional Kiev clamps down on free speech, it looks more like a cautionary tale.

In May 2014, newly elected Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko promised that he would rapidly bring peace to his country. “The anti-terrorist operation cannot and should not last two or three months. It should and will last hours,” he said.

Nearly 60,000 hours later, the war into which the badly named “anti-terrorist operation” morphed is still going on. Poroshenko’s successor Volodymyr Zelensky similarly promised to bring the fighting to an end. “My main goal… is that I want to end the war. This is my mission within these five years,” he told journalists. But he has been equally unsuccessful.

Zelensky resoundingly defeated Poroshenko in the 2019 presidential election, in which the incumbent won a plurality of votes only in the far west of the country. By portraying himself as a candidate not only of peace, but also of national unity, Zelensky was able to attract the votes of a large number of Russian-speaking Ukrainians in the south and east of the country who had been alienated by Poroshenko’s increasingly nationalistic tone.

Unfortunately, since then Zelensky has betrayed those voters time after time.

Not only has he failed to take any of the steps required to bring the war to an end – most notably, the concessions demanded in the 2015 Minsk II agreements – but his government has also further suppressed the language rights of Ukrainians and is now clamping down on the opposition media.

In January 2020, liberal Russian pundits lined up to praise Zelensky’s new year’s speech. Zelensky was said to have promoted an image of national unity, seeking to overcome linguistic and other differences which had been accentuated by his predecessor’s nationalist policies. “It doesn’t matter what your street is called as long as it is clean and asphalted,” said Zelensky, in a line which seemed to suggest that his government would bring an end to the habit of changing street names from those of communist heroes to those of nationalist icons like Stepan Bandera.

In fact, it hasn’t. Not only has Zelensky failed to provide clean and asphalted streets, but it’s since become clear that what he really meant was not that he would bring an end to forcible Ukrainization, but that Russian speakers should just shut up and stop complaining about it, since, after all, none of that stuff actually “matters.”

Thus, Zelensky has done nothing to reverse the 2019 law on official languages, which sharply restricts the use of Russian. Most notably, on January 16 a new rule came into effect which obliges all service providers (shops, restaurants, etc.) to offer their services in Ukrainian by default. Meanwhile, censorship in Ukraine has reached new levels of silliness, prohibiting for instance a book about the Vikings by an American author because it referred to ancient Kievan Rus’ as “Russia.”

Now Zelensky has gone even further, banning three television stations owned by opposition politician Taras Kozak, on the grounds that they are spreading Russian disinformation. Zelensky claims that he supports freedom of speech but not “propaganda financed by the aggressors.” “These media have become one of the tools in the war against Ukraine, so they are blocked in order to protect national security,” said Zelensky’s spokesperson Yuliia Mendel.

The fact that the ban comes at a moment when Zelensky’s popularity is plummeting, and when Kozak’s party Opposition Platform – For Life is leading in national opinion polls may be entirely coincidental. But then again it may not. The move smacks of political desperation.

It is also, of course, deeply undemocratic in character. Had former president Viktor Yanukovich, who was overthrown in the February 2014 Maidan revolution, ever attempted such a thing, Ukrainian liberals and their Western allies would have cried huge screams of outrage. Now, however, they are silent, or even supportive. The US Embassy in Kiev, for instance, issued a statement that it backed the measure as designed “to counter Russia’s malign influence.”

The US response reveals the shallowness of Western assertions that in backing the Maidan revolution and subsequent governments they are supporting democracy, human rights, and a liberal order. In reality, geopolitics seems to be the primary concern. As long as Ukraine remains resolutely anti-Russia, a blind eye will be turned to nearly any and all abuses of democratic principles.

And here’s where the situation becomes rather sad. In the immediate aftermath of the Maidan revolution, it was said that Vladimir Putin’s response was driven by fears that Western-style democracy in Ukraine would provide a positive model which would incite a similar revolution in Russia.

A typical analysis was that of Paul D’Anieri, professor of public policy at the University of California, Riverside, who wrote in 2015 that “the prospect was that Ukraine would, with the aid of the EU, begin turning itself around. If so, it could become an attractive model for Russians, and a very different model than the one Putin has been insisting is the only one available.”

This line continues to find supporters. For instance, in a gushing article for Al Jazeera, journalist Leonid Ragozin remarked that Zelensky’s 2020 new year’s speech showed that “Ukraine may finally be moving towards fulfilling the Kremlin‘s biggest nightmare – becoming a role model for progressive politics and democracy for Russians to look up to.”

Ragozin has it back to front, for the very opposite would appear to be the case. Commenting on recent protests in Moscow, Ollie Carroll, Moscow correspondent of the British newspaper, the Independent, asked why Russians weren’t reacting with the same sense of indignation as Ukrainians had when Yanukovich’s police attacked demonstrators in Kiev six-and-a-half years ago. Carroll implied that this meant that there was something defective about Russians’ moral values.

In reality, the answer could simply be that they’ve looked at Ukraine and decided that it isn’t a good example to follow.

Paul Robinson is a professor at the University of Ottawa. He writes about Russian and Soviet history, military history, and military ethics, and is author of the Irrussianality blog.

February 6, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , | Leave a comment

Bank Of America Secretly Handed Customer Data To FBI Investigators

By Richie Allen | February 5, 2021

Bank of America customers are closing their accounts and taking their business elsewhere after it was revealed that the bank snooped through hundreds of innocent people’s accounts at the request of the federal government. The FBI wanted the information as part of its investigation into the Capitol riot. Anyone who made a transaction in DC on January 6th had their data handed to the feds. FOX News host Tucker Carlson broke the story last night.

After being contacted by the government, Bank of America handed over the information of 211 people. Of the 211 accounts that were turned over, none led to so much as an arrest, although one man was questioned and released without charge. The bank has so far refused to divulge how many accounts it trawled through before producing the 211 names. It has not revealed whether it was compelled by a subpoena or search warrant to hand over the data either.

Civil Rights groups in the US are calling for a boycott of the bank and want to know if other banks have done the same. This morning Bank of America told :

“We don’t comment on our communications with law enforcement. All banks have responsibilities under federal law to cooperate with law enforcement inquiries in full compliance with the law.”

Fox presenter Tucker Carlson said last night:

“These were the private records of Americans who had committed no crime; people who, as far as we know, had absolutely nothing to do with what happened at the Capitol. But at the request of federal investigators, Bank of America searched its databases looking for people who fit a specific profile.”

Referring to the man who was questioned Carlson said:

“The FBI hauls you in for questioning in a terror investigation, not because you’ve done anything suspicious, but because you bought plane tickets and visited your country’s capital. Now they’re sweating you because your bank, which you trust with your most private information, has ratted you out without your knowledge. Because Bank of America did that, you are being treated like a member of Al Qaeda.”

Banks are the most criminally corrupt cartels on Planet Earth. We call them banksters for a reason. To be shocked that they violated the rights of their customers is to be naïve in the extreme. Sometime in the next few years, maybe sooner, your government will declare itself broke, having borrowed trillions in imaginary money to pay for the pandemic hoax. At that point, the idea of a wealth tax or a bail-in will be mooted. Those are code words for daylight robbery. They will take your money without your consent and your bank will be only happy to help them. What Bank of America has done should be a timely reminder of what banks really are. Your bank is not your friend.

February 6, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties | | 2 Comments


The Highwire with Del Bigtree | February 4, 2021

Despite attempts to conceal information by the Governor and his allies, Andrew Cuomo’s nursing home death scandal from last Spring, which could be responsible for 6,500 deaths, is finally coming to a head. Is a cover-up about to be exposed?


Reports of adverse reactions from the #Covid19 vaccines have piled up and recent polls have shown that 51% of Americans will delay or refuse the shot altogether. Why are people refusing?

Flip-Floppers Caught Flailing

The biggest medical and political leaders in the country have flip-flopped on every #Covid19 policy decision.

February 6, 2021 Posted by | Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular, Video | , | Leave a comment