There is this absurd expectation that in addressing Israel’s institutional violence against the native Palestinians, one needs to be prim and proper and ask for “liberty, pretty please”. How did we lose this argument in the first place? For one thing, we have been forced to accept the boundaries of the debate imposed by the pro-Israeli mafia at the New York Times and the Washington Post. Sulzberger and Graham only tolerate so much dissent. On the subject of Israel’s five decades of administering violent injustice to the native people of Palestine, the amount of dissent allowed would make Stalin blush.
Amazingly enough, especially in the age of search engines, detailed information on the overtly racist nature of Israel’s occupation army is readily available to those who wander outside the confining perimeters drawn by the media titans. On the Internet, it takes but a few strokes of a mouse to escape the mind-numbing clutches of the seven sisters (the five networks, and the two ‘national’ papers). Seven CEOs, including in their ranks the volatile Ted Turner, the malicious Rupert Murdoch and the secretive shadowy Sulzberger, control 95% of the ‘international’ news that filters through the “push” media. Poll after poll has aptly demonstrated that Americans have no faith in the veracity of “mass media” journalists and pundits. Americans are not stupid; we are just constantly sold a shoddy journalistic product that is faulty by design.
I have done a random study of my own in the last five months; almost every American adult appears to believe that these arrogant media titans are messing with the facts to sell their agendas. It is time to move beyond whining about it. Letters to the editor only encourages these morons. We need to create a movement to bust the media trusts, and bring back free and fair discourse on matters of public policy, foreign and domestic.
We can no longer trust the drivel manufactured by the spin-doctors and pundits. America and the world need a Las Vegas divorce from the seven sisters, fast and furious. These mega-media corporations are now more powerful than our elected government, and it is the only government they would allow us to elect. The most effective way to combat this insidious force in American life, is to ruin these bastards by destroying their business model. No audience and presto, they are just a bunch of guys with big mouths and second-hand cameras. Let us handle them one at a time, boycott CNN first; you will hardly miss their “Global minute”. If you have been watching FOX, well just stop it. To get your news from Murdoch’s morons, you first need to convert your brain into a garbage disposal unit. That whole Murdoch establishment is like a giant KKK rally. Spread the word not to buy from advertisers on CNN and FOX. We can still get our news fix through the very active alternative press, especially on the Internet.
Perhaps a British invasion can do for our journalism what the Beetles did for our music. If you live in a good size city, pick up a Sunday British or Australian paper, like the Independent of London or the Guardian. After a few weeks, you will become immune to the code words and formulas that are the meat and potatoes of mass media propaganda. Besides, those Brits have a wicked sense of humor. Imagine if enough of us gave the media moguls the birdie. What a wonderful world that would be.
Why now? To demonstrate the awesome liberating power of the internet and to take a blow for liberty and human rights. To reward journalists with integrity and to punish public relations men who are willing advocates of state terror, like Safire and Friedman. When these media titans actively conspire to sanitize a notorious war criminal like Sharon, there is little left to salvage in their reputations. These mass media boys are like a daily poison pill, complicit in acts of murder even as they fuss over their special Sunday garden sections.
It takes an amoral bigot to condone the scale of Israeli repression that pays a daily visit to the Palestinians in their desperate struggle for independence. Like the four-month old baby who was born and killed during the seven-month uprising, the majority of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza were born and raised under the Israeli gun. Take the worst of southern segregation and compare it to the operative legal system instituted as part of the occupation apparatus. Israel is a state that insists on the right to torture, to assassinate and to grab native land and hand it over to illegal settlers who are favored because of their Jewish religion. Now, consider that Sharon, of Qibya and Sabra and Shatila, was elected by a vast majority of Israelis and immediately endorsed by the leadership of the American Jewish Community and the media moguls. Add to your little inquiry a review of the archives of the New York Times for the last seven-month and confirm the deep ethnic slant in their coverage.
So lets retaliate and start a movement to Bust the Media Trusts. Even a 3% drop in sales will send them for a loop. A 10% drop will make them spin out of control. A 15% drop will have a few of these bastards down on their knees begging their creditors for a thirty-day bridge loan. Switch cable providers. Often. Tune them out and read a book. Learn a foreign language. If you know a small store that sells the New York Times or NewsWeek, talk to the owners. See, if they can sell his customers a better product. Encourage you local paper to suspend dealing with the New York Times Syndicate and the Washington Post Syndicate.
We can bust at least one of them by the end of the year. Its not going to be that hard, given the fact that most of their journalists are by now so thoroughly discredited. And we can do it all through an internet campaign. Lets stage a revolt against this dangerous monopoly of public speech from the living rooms of America.
Let us call upon all Americans to participate in dismantling the power crazed media monopolies and restore ethical journalism to America. We can demonstrate against these un-elected power brokers from the privacy of our own homes. In the wings, there are hundreds of courageous journalists and writers, like Chomsky, Edward Said, Alexander Cockburn, Cristopher Hitchens, Justin Raimondo (ANTIWAR.com), Charley Reese and Norman Solomon. Add a little British invasion by the likes of Robert Fisk, Phil Reeves and Suzanne Goldenberg and we have the makings of a promising start to restore a level of integrity to journalism in America.
We also believe it would be appropriate for those journalists, who work for the seven sisters, to consider following the path of the tobacco workers in Florida who quit their jobs rather than work in an industry that manufactured lethal substances.
So, help us spread the word. Lets light this fire and teach a little humility to some of the most arrogant men on the planet. Publish and circulate this document freely. And do your bit by participating in a boycott of CNN and FOX. Tell your relatives, your neighbors and your friends the media strike is on. Media consumers around the world are going on strike for a better product. Find alternatives to the New York Times and the Washington Post and recommend them to your friends. Lets show these bigots a little passive resistance to their lethal product.
Whatever your cause, be it the environment, campaign finance ‘bribery’, clean and accessible government, human rights, an affordable cure for AIDS, a more racially tolerant world, an end to religious bigotry, alleviating the plight of those who suffer the daily indignities of poverty, famine and war, fair wages, peace among the nations; we can all join as one in a movement to bust the media trusts. All that is required on the part of the average media consumer is a change of habit. This can be the safest easiest and most significant revolt in modern American history. Consider what is at stake; an environment where media monopolies lose their ability to stifle reasonable debate. Bust the Media Trusts, now.
Mr. Ahmed Amr is Editor of NileMedia.com in Seattle and a regular contributor to Media Monitors Network (MMN)