RARE ETHICAL WRITERS expose Mainstream media lying: a compendium of key quotations

This account was originally published by Gideon Polya, "Rare ethical writers expose Mainstream media lying", Countercurrents, May 2010:

http://www.countercurrents.org/polya290510.htm. I have put writers name in bold.


The most palpable reality in the Western democracies is that Mainstream Media massively lie by omission and lie by commission. Normally people try to cover their tracks when they lie but numerous examples show that the lying of Mainstream Media is all too readily discerned.

Thus, for example,  “holocaust” is the death of a huge number of people and “genocide” is defined by Article 2 of the UN Genocide Convention as “ acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group” (see: http://www.edwebproject.org/sideshow/genocide/convention.html ). However there are major holocaust and genocide events, past and present, that are almost completely ignored by Mainstream Media.  And, of course, holocaust ignoring and genocide ignoring are vastly worse than repugnant holocaust  denial and genocide denial because while denial admits of the possibility of public debate, media ignoring simply obviates any such public discussion.

I have analyzed such holocaust ignoring and genocide ignoring by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), the ostensibly authoritative Australian equivalent of the UK BBC. The ABC has a search engine that allows one to “search the entire ABC site” and one can use this to compare ABC reportage with the results of Google searches. For example, in the 1943-1945 Bengali Holocaust (the first World War 2 atrocity to be described as a “holocaust”)  the British deliberately starved to death 6-7 million Indians (see BBC, “The Bengal Famine”: http://www.open2.net/thingsweforgot/bengalfamine_programme.html ), an atrocity greater in magnitude than the WW2 Jewish Holocaust (5-6 million Jews killed, 1 in 6 dying from deprivation).

However the ABC Search results/Google Search result for the phrase “Bengali Holocaust” is 0/6,930 whereas it is 101/206,000 for the phrase “Jewish Holocaust”. A similar ABC Search/Google Search analysis has been performed in to relation to 23 past and present holocaust and genocide atrocities ranging  from “Aboriginal Holocaust” (0/3,000) to Palestinian Genocide (0/44, 800) (for the shocking details see “Australian ABC ignores holocaust and genocide atrocities ”: http://sites.google.com/site/mainstreammedialying/australian-abc-ignores-huge-genocidal-realities ).  

Many more examples can be given of the ABC and other Mainstream Media ignoring huge, Elephant-in-the-Room realities. Indeed I have created a website “Mainstream Media Lying” to progressively document this gross abuse of truth, ethics and morality (see:   http://sites.google.com/site/mainstreammedialying/home ).

While Mainstream Media lying is a huge Elephant-in-the-Room reality in the Western democracies (perceived as Murdochracies by John Pilger), it is very rare to find ethical writers who expose this perversion. The following quotations represent a “work in progress” of collecting such critical opinions from all too rare ethical writers. (I would be very grateful if any readers can add to this compendium).

1. Arundhati Roy (brilliant humanitarian Indian writer) on simultaneous First World holocaust commission and holocaust denial (see Arundhati Roy in “The Chequebook and the Cruise Missile”): “the ultimate privilege of the élite is not just their deluxe lifestyles, but deluxe lifestyles with a clear conscience.”

2. Robert C. Millar, a United Press correspondent covering the Korean War in 1952 (quoted by John Pilger: http://evatt.labor.net.au/news/201.html ) “There are certain facts and stories from Korea that editors and publishers have printed which were pure fabrication ... Many of us who sent the stories knew they were false, but we had to write them because they were official releases from responsible military headquarters and were released for publication even though the people responsible knew they were untrue”

3. William Howard Russell, who was sent by The Times (UK) to cover the Crimean War, in a letter to his editor (see: http://evatt.labor.net.au/news/201.html ) : “Am I to tell these things? or am I to hold my tongue?" To which his editor Delane replied, "Continue to tell as much truth as you can."

4. John Pilger (outstanding expatriate Australian UK writer and journalist) reviewing “The First Casualty” by Phillip Knightley (Evatt Foundation, 13 March 2003. “The people don't know and can't know”: http://evatt.labor.net.au/news/201.html ):  “When I read the first edition of this remarkable book twenty-five years ago, I was struck by the following quotations. During the First World War, Prime Minister David Lloyd George told C P Scott, editor of the Manchester Guardian: "If the people really knew [the truth] the war would be stopped tomorrow. But of course they don't know and can't know." The truth was reported, insisted The Times correspondent, Sir Phillip Gibbs (knighted for his services), "apart from the naked realism of horrors and losses, and criticism of the facts…Like [William Howard] Russell's, the best journalism is the first draft of history: for that we are indebted to Phillip Knightley, whose clear-sighted and principled book throws down a challenge to journalists to examine their role in the promotion of the war, in propaganda and its myths, and the subliminal pressures applied by organisations like the BBC, whose news is often selected on the basis of a spurious establishment "credibility". The following pages ought to be read by every young reporter and by those who retain pride in our craft of truth-telling, no matter how unpopular and unpalatable the truth. The rest is not journalism.”

5. Professor Yoshio Sugimoto commenting on press censorship via the “reporters' clubs” in Japan (see his book “An Introduction to Japanese Society”,  Cambridge University Press, 1997; pp211-215): “ Japan 's mass media tend to be docile because of the way in which information-gathering units are based on government and business-establishments. Government ministries, prefectural and municipal governments, police headquarters, and business and union organizations all provide reporters of major print and electronic media with office space called kisha kurabu (reporters' clubs). These clubrooms are normally equipped with telephones and other communications machines, service personnel, and other facilities. Media organizations use them free of charge. In almost all cases, club membership is restricted to the reporters of major news organizations and is not open to journalists from minor presses or to foreign journalists.  …By constantly feeding information to reporters in this environment, representatives of the institutions which provide club facilities can obliquely control the way in which it is reported to the public. Reporters cannot risk being excluded from their club because they would  then lose access to this regular flow of information.”

6. Mark Aarons and J. Loftus on “the holes in history” (see Mark Aarons and J. Loftus  “The Secret War Against the Jews”): “The hidden parts of history, the covert sides, are far more orderly and rational, but can be seen and understood only if you are told where to look. The holes in history are what makes sense of the thing.” .

7. Barbara Kingsolver in her great novel "The Lacuna" (lacuna meaning hiatus, blank, missing part, gap, cavity, or empty space) has  Russian Communist revolutionary and theorist Leon Trotsky (Lev) and his assistant Van have the following discussion about media (part 3, p159, Faber & Faber, London, 2009 edition): ""But newspapers have a duty to truth", Van said. Lev [Trotsky] clicked his tongue. "They tell the truth only as the exception. Zola [French novelist of "J'accuse" fame] wrote that the mendacity of the press could be could be divided into two groups: the yellow press lies every day without hesitating. But others, like the Times , speak the truth on all inconsequential occasions, so they can deceive the public with the requisite authority when it becomes necessary." Van got up from his chair to gather the cast-off newspapers. Lev took off his glasses and rubbed his eyes. " I don't mean to offend the journalists; they aren't any different from other people. They're merely the megaphones of other people" … [Trotsky observes to his assistant Shepherd] “Soli, let me tell you. The most important thing about a person is always the thing you don't know”” (p218).

8. Wilfrid Burchett (outstanding Australian journalist who was severely persecuted for reporting World War 2, and the Korean and Indo-China Wars from the Communist side) writing to his brother on 12 October 1969 (see Ben Kiernan, editor, “Burchett. Reporting the other side of the world 1939- 1983): “ Thank goodness I have been able to maintain my independence  throughout all these years, awfully difficult from all viewpoints though it was. To be able to speak to Russians, Chinese, Vietnamese, Koreans, Cambodians as a friend but completely independent, enables me to do and say things others may not. But now and again this yields positive results.”

9. Peter Carey (outstanding Australian novelist) on media censorship (panel discussion on ABC TV Q&A, Monday 24 May 2010: http://www.abc.net.au/tv/qanda/txt/s2901978.htm ):

“TONY JONES [ABC presenter]: All right, let's hear from Peter [re truth and lying in public life]..

PETER CAREY: I keep on thinking about the role of the medial generally in this and how the media is always so continually hysterical about people lying and not telling the truth. And if I really think there's a big problem in our society today, it's that the media is not telling the truth to people and they know what it is. If you really want to know what's happening the world, you go out and get drunk with journalists and they will tell you what isn't in the papers. So they're living - these guys are living every day with the reality of a proprietor, say, or a corporation who owns them will not permit them to tell what they know to be true. So, okay, this guy lied. He's not a good person because he did it but I think the hysteria is about a bigger, bigger issue, which is we are not being honestly reported to. And if there was, you know, Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction but...

MALCOLM FRASER [former Australian PM}: But they knew he didn't.

PETER CAREY: Yeah.

TONY JONES: They knew he didn't, you say?

MALCOLM FRASER: Yes.

PETER CAREY: Yes.

TONY JONES: You mean the Howard Government knew he didn't?

MALCOLM FRASER: It should have. I think the British Government did, the American Government did and the Australian Government should have.”

10. Jane Austen (brilliant English novelist) had a sceptical attitude to the “official version” e.g. that Richard III had murdered the Princes in the Tower of London: “...I am rather inclined to suppose him a very respectable Man;...but it also has been declared that he did not kill his two Nephews, which  I am  inclined to believe true; & if this is the case, it may also be that he did not kill his wife...” (Jane Austen on Richard III in her Juvenilia writing “The History of England”, 1791).   Jane Austen has also posed a germane series of questions that are directly relevant to this problem of public honesty. In her novel “Northanger Abbey” the heroine, Miss Catherine Morland, affected by the somewhat Gothic atmosphere of the Tilney family home and the romantic horrors of Mrs Radcliffe's Gothic novels, conceives the fantasy that General Tilney (the father of her beloved, Henry Tilney) has done away with the late Mrs Tilney. Henry reproves Catherine as follows:

"If I understand you rightly, you have formed a surmise of such horror as I have hardly words to -. Dear Miss Morland, consider the dreadful nature of the suspicions you have entertained. What have you been judging from? Remember the country and the age in which we live. Remember that we are English, that we are Christians. Consult your own understanding, your own sense of the probable, your own observation of what is passing around you. Does our education prepare us for such  atrocities? Do our laws connive at them? Could they be perpetrated without being known, in a country like this, where social and literary intercourse is on such a footing, where every man is surrounded by a neighbourhood of voluntary spies, and where roads and newspapers lay everything open?”"

My answers to Henry Tilney's questions are “Yes! Yes! Yes!”

According to CNN (4 January 2008): “President Bush and his top aides publicly made 935 false statements about the security risk posed by Iraq in the two years following September 11, 2001, according to a study released Tuesday by two nonprofit journalism groups. "In short, the Bush administration led the nation to war on the basis of erroneous information that it methodically propagated and that culminated in military action against Iraq on March 19, 2003," reads an overview of the examination, conducted by the Center for Public Integrity and its affiliated group, the Fund for Independence in Journalism.”

Yet the above Mainstream CNN report to a Mainstream audience about egregious Bush lying came about 5 years too late to save Iraq . As former conservative Australian PM Malcolm Fraser stated recently (see above) about the UK and US Governments having  pre-invasion knowledge that Saddam Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction: “I think the British Government did, the American Government did and the Australian Government should have”. The ongoing Iraqi Holocaust and  Iraqi Genocide has been associated with 1.4 million post-invasion violent deaths, 1.1 million post-invasion non-violent excess deaths, 2.5 million post-invasion violent and non-violent excess deaths, 0.8 million post-invasion under-5 infant deaths, and 5-6 million refugees. Indeed in the period 1990-2010, Iraq (current population 30 million) has suffered  4.4 million violent and non-violent excess deaths, and  2.0 million under-5 infant deaths, (see “Iraqi Holocaust, Iraqi Genocide: http://sites.google.com/site/iraqiholocaustiraqigenocide/ ).

Due to genocidal US Alliance violence and Mainstream Media lying there has been a Muslim Holocaust and Muslim Genocide in a swathe of countries from Occupied Somalia in the West to NW Pakistan in the East, with violent and non-violent avoidable deaths in the 21st century US War on Terror now totalling about 8 million (see “Muslim Holocaust, Muslim Genocide”: http://sites.google.com/site/muslimholocaustmuslimgenocide/ ).

Peace is the only way but silence kills and silence is complicity.

Dr Gideon Polya currently teaches science students at a major Australian university. He published some 130 works in a 5 decade scientific career, most recently a huge pharmacological reference text "Biochemical Targets of Plant Bioactive Compounds" (CRC Press/Taylor & Francis, New York & London , 2003). He has recently published “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950” (G.M. Polya, Melbourne, 2007: http://globalbodycount.blogspot.com/ ); see also his contribution “Australian complicity in Iraq mass mortality” in “Lies, Deep Fries & Statistics” (edited by Robyn Williams, ABC Books, Sydney, 2007): http://www.abc.net.au/rn/science/ockham/stories/s1445960.htm ). He has just published a revised and updated 2008 version of his 1998 book “Jane Austen and the Black Hole of British History” (see: http://janeaustenand.blogspot.com/ ) as biofuel-, globalization- and climate-driven global food price increases threaten a greater famine catastrophe than the man-made famine in British-ruled India that killed 6-7 million Indians in the “forgotten” World War 2 Bengal Famine (see recent BBC broadcast involving Dr Polya, Economics Nobel Laureate Professor Amartya Sen and others: http://www.open2.net/thingsweforgot/
bengalfamine_programme.html
). When words fail one can say it in pictures - for images of Gideon Polya's huge paintings for the Planet, Peace, Mother and Child see: http://sites.google.com/site/artforpeaceplanetmotherchild/ and http://www.flickr.com/photos/gideonpolya/
.


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