"The wealthy, not only by private fraud but also by common laws, do every day pluck and snatch away from the people some part of their daily living. Therefore, when I consider and weigh in my mind these commonwealths which nowadays do flourish, I perceive nothing but a certain conspiracy of rich men in procuring their own commodities under the name and authority of the commonwealth.

They invent and devise all means and crafts, first how to keep safely without fear of losing that which they have unjustly gathered together, and next how to hire and abuse the work and labor of the people for as little money and effort as possible."

Thomas More, Utopia

Friday, September 22, 2006

False Witness As An Art Form

Today I received an e-mail from the people at Media Lens, a British based media watchdog organization that patterns itself after Fairness and Accuracy In Reporting (FAIR). FAIR was founded here in the US by Jeff Cohen 20 years ago after he came to the realization that the mainstream media, largely corporate owned subsidiaries, offered very little to the public that helped them to make informed decisions. On the contrary, much of what was presented as "news" upon careful examination was (and is) revealed to be clumsy propaganda serving powerful vested interests.

Media Lens, like its American counterpart, has consistently challenged the Bush/Blair administration fabrications regarding the justification for and consequences of the war in Iraq. They have restricted their focus, however, on the mainstream media, the party they believe most responsible for the tragedy that has unfolded in Mesopotamia. By not challenging the Bush administration's rationalizations for the "need" to attack an impoverished Third World country already staggering under crushing sanctions, the mainstream press added a veneer of legitimacy to the clear violation of international law. The American public swallowed it all, hook, line, and sinker due largely to a mainstream media that served as what Dennis Perrin of the RED STATE SON blog has called the Bush administration's pom pom squad.

The mainstream press has continued to betray the public with its coverage of the US/UK occupation and Media Lens provides a textbook example of how it works. Enjoy.

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