Western populations and awareness : control, massmedia, censorship.

No no. You can. And you do.

In North America, « we have a public that for the most part is blissfully unaware of the extent to which our news is being censored, filtered and controlled… » Dave Lindorff.

Excerpts following are from an article by Dave Lindorff – The Public Record – Nov 16th, 2009 – President Obama: Don’t Lecture China on Censorship :

« … America is hardly free of censorship. Heck, the president himself has gone to court to prevent the release of photographs of US troops torturing captives in Iraq, Afghanistan and at Guantanamo. Talk about censorship! But it goes way beyond just such crude, totalitarian style control over information.

« Let’s just take the issue of depleted uranium weapons, over 1000 tons of which have been expended in the US invasion of Iraq, most of it in populated areas where millions remain exposed to the radioactive dust of the burned material. There is almost no reporting on this topic in the US media. The Pentagon has for years lied about and hidden the effects of this deadly substance, used in shells, bombs and bullets because of its unique ability to penetrate hard steel armor and concrete bunker walls.

« It has refused to disclose where the weapons were fired, and has denied US troops the tests that would show if they have been contaminated. It has even resorted to having paid Pentagon hacks surreptitiously libel, slander and otherwise undermine those military sources and journalists who have tried to expose this scourge (this reporter has been the target of such disinformation attacks). »

End of excerpt.

An other very interesting excerpt from same article :

« One thing I learned from living and working as a journalist and journalism teacher in China back in the 1990s is that the Chinese people, with their long experience of living in a totalitarian dictatorship in which all media are owned and tightly controlled by the state and the ruling Communist Party, are acutely aware that they are being lied to and that the truth is being hidden from them. Accordingly, they have learned to read between the lines, to pick up subtle hints in news articles which honest journalists have learned how to slip into their carefully controlled reports. They have also developed a sophisticated private system of person-to-person reporting called xiaodao xiaoxi or, literally, “back-alley news.”

« This system used to be word-of-mouth between neighbors and friends. As telephones became ubiquitous, it was done by phone, allowing transmission over long distances quickly. Now there is the internet, which, while it is systematically controlled via what has become known as China’s “Great Firewall”—effectively all of China is like a vast corporate “intranet” which blocks access to outside websites—still allows the flow of email. This is nearly impossible to monitor, particularly when the messages are not bulk mailed to large numbers of addressees.

« So in China, reports of corruption, of local rebellions or strikes, or of important news about the outside world that the government wants to keep at bay, manage to circulate widely inside China despite a huge state censorship apparatus.

« It works because the Chinese people know they are being lied to and kept in the dark, and they want to break through that official shroud of secrecy and control.

« In the US, in contrast, we have a public that for the most part is blissfully unaware of the extent to which our news is being censored, filtered and controlled.  We boast of our “free press,” and our open society, and indeed, as a journalist, I am free to write what I want to write.

« But given that most people get their news either from corporately owned newspapers or from corporate radio and TV stations,  it doesn’t really matter what I or other journalists critical of the Establishment write because it won’t appear in the corporate media.  Since most Americans, unlike most Chinese people, assume that they live in a society with a free press and no censorship or control of information, they don’t even bother to look beyond the information that is spoon-fed to them by corporate media sources.

« The result is that in my experience I have found peasants in rural Jiangsu or Anhwei Province to in many cases be better informed about their own country and the world than are typical American suburbanites. Certainly if an American wants to be informed, all the information you could want is available, but you have to be first of all aware that you aren’t getting certain information via the obvious sources, and then you have to want to get it, and make the effort to find it.  For most Americans, all three of these elements are missing. »

End of excerpt.

In the seventies, a refugee from the Soviet Union living in Montreal described to me the same phenomenon for USSR, as Lindorff does, in the preceding, for China.

What the soviet refugee, Hassan, a professional translator, explained to me – I was in my thirties at the time –  was this, that it was incredibly easy, especially at the time, to control North-Americans : all you needed was a tv set in each and every home.

There was no need for gulags, reeducation camps, or worse.

North-Americans believed everything they were told on tv, they had confidence in their anchorman-preacher, they had confidence in any voice from any kind of authority; prestige of any kind would immediately put them into a state of receptivity that was conducive to mild or deep hypnosis, and from there to the lasting effects of planted suggestions of all kinds.

I was just mildly aware of it at the time.

Actually, I simply found mass-media frustrating, repetitive, clichéd, irritating.

What I realized, afterwards, was that there were good reasons for being irritated or frustrated. Maybe more so when you’re not fully aware of what’s taking place, the fact of being fed half-truths, half lies, purposeful cachotteries, noisy and often disputable trivia, or bold lies, day after day, is like being fed, day after day, toxic food, ersatz of all kinds, with loads of white sugar – or aspartame, or both.

On the part of the mass-media agents, it was much worse than simple or occasional “fits of bad faith,” much worse than treating us to their “incompetence” (so-called : I don’t believe anymore they’re that “incompetent”). Mass-media people, agents, were masking, grooming, hiding the truth, and most of them knew it. Let’s say some were “on automatic” after so many years of practice – but others were certainly very concious of what they were doing : through time and habit, they had become comfortably coward. For all practical purposes, they were wrapping us up in a bubble filled with dreams. There’s a word for that in Québec French vernacular, and it’s the verb “enfirouâper” – which comes from the English expression “in fur wrapped” transformed into a verb. Its very cozy and keeps you prisoner of coziness until you realize you’ve been mentally jelloed or jailed or led up the garden path.

Today, I know Hassan, the ex-soviet guy, was right.

Is it changing in North America? There are signs. They are not always easy to read. Or is it just wishful thinking on my part?

I improvise. A sign of the times is the growing attitude of nervousness on the part of establishments. PRs are often booed. Our nomenklaturas don’t like it. They get nervous. More and more, they are bent on applying more stringent controls of all kinds on North-American populations or communities. They try. They don’t always succeed. For instance, one can observe a refreshing surge of social awareness in Québec, Canada, USA.

Observe. The “lying-box,” the tv-set, even the massmedias on the internet, don’t provide sufficient reliable mind control effect anymore (the internet and the blogosphere played an important role, here, against mass media and Radio-Canada is often ranting against it, much anti-blogosphere shalow blabla), which also means that repression is on the oligarchic establishment agenda, it has to be, as a reaction. These are signs of the times. Growing awareness on the part of more and more people – more in certain areas than in others – can be measured by more repressive moves (often carefully or tentatively covert) from the establishments. And at the same time, an impression, it’s an impression, that truth is kind of growing in force, growing some sort of autonomy which flies in funny ways in the face of authorities … Maybe I’m being too poetical. But maybe I’m not.

On the other hand, for many people, any growth in awareness or in consciousness is perceived as a danger. Even as a “sin.” Or a damnation. The fact is that the end of illusions, of any illusion, in the long run, is always a liberation but not everybody are ready to give up illusions, and even more so when these over sugar-coated illusions seem more and more on the brink of bursting and disappearing. This is true for many “non-establishment” people, as well as for the bulk of establishment people.

There’s something we can call “collective unconscious” (which is far from being “unconscious” – but that’s an other story). It’s a jungian concept (you certainly know it) based on experience of  inner realms; “collective unconscious” is deeper than personal subconscious or subconsciousness.

But there’s also the “collective conscious” (or “collective consciousness”).

Some cultures have a “collective consciousness” more evolved and sophisticated than others, for historical reasons, for all kinds of reasons. Especially communities that have lived under tough totalitarian, controlling, or dictatorial rules. Or because of other kinds of more or less longlasting traumatic situations (the subject is vast).

North America – I mean USA, Canada, Québec, I don’t know for Mexico and I regret it – seems to be in infancy as to the level of lucidity and sophistication of  its “collective conscious” (or “collective consciousness”), but it’s evolving, the eggshell is cracking, and there would be much to say about this evolution which is taking place – at varying pace depending on the regions of North-America. An evolution? Actually, we are more on the brink of a mutation.

In any event, and for my own benefit, I’ve archived this post, among other categories, in the category “Survie – Survival.”

Hi, Hassan : you were right. And so are the Chinese Lindorff describes.

Link to Lindorff’s article:

President Obama: Don’t Lecture China on Censorship – Dave Lindorff – The Public Record.

Do you remember Chernobyl? Nuclear disaster contamination: apparently worse than previously thought...

Waging Total Nuclear War against Humanity and Human Genes: Nuclear Radiation and Uranium 238 (DU)

Canada: Un totalitarisme souterrain persistant.

Le Danger d’être Canadien: La Loi d’Habilitation nazie de mars 1933 dans la Constitution Canadienne.

Astounding 2009 Nobel Prize for Literature Joan de Blow never wrote a book!  She talks about Obama. (Satire.)

Invisible Person with Enormous Power: it starts with a « C », as in « Corporation », but it doesn’t end there…

Radio-Canada et l’insignifiance mass-médiatique.

Was there an earthly paradise?  What was it?  Where was it? (Satprem and Mira Alfassa – the Mother)

How can we make our consciousness vast?

© Copyright 2009 Loup Kibiloki – Électrodes

Blogsurfer.us – IcerocketTechnorati

About Jacques Renaud

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4 Responses to Western populations and awareness : control, massmedia, censorship.

  1. Bon dimanche à toi, Olivia.

    Il pleut dans le midi
    et le nord est blanc.

    Les jours se suivent,
    et se répondent
    comme des petits coups de gongs
    sur le tambour du temps.

    À bientôt. Loup :)


  2. Merci de ta réponse, Loup.

    Parce que je ne souffre pas d’un excès d’américanophilie, j’étais peut-etre trop sévère en jugant les Américains naive. Il y a surement des gens lucides et perspicaces aux États-Unis comme ailleurs.

    Ca vaut la peine de jeter un coup d’oeil à “Marianne” et aussi à “L’Humanite Dimanche”.

    Semaine du 14 au 20 janvier 2010, p. 59:

    par Jim Cohen, Saint-Denis/France

    “Meme si la gauche aux États-Unis n’a pas de parti politique de référence, elle existe à travers de mouvements sociaux de toutes sortes et à travers un espace publique critique qui s’est considerablement développé ces dernières années (voir les sites de Democracy now, ZNet, AlterNet, In These Times, etc.) …

    Dans le domaine international, tout le monde à gauche en convient: le bilan de la première année (Obama) est négatif. … Pour Tom Hayden, porte-parole du mouvement antiguerre, l’administration reste dans la logique de la guerre longue. …

    Bilan préoccupant donc mais je n’irai pas aussi loin qu’Alexander Cockburn (site: http://www.counterpunch.org) qui affirme avec cynisme que ‘la gauche a disparu en tant que force vitale dans la politique américaine’. … Le problème est plutot que les mouvements qui existent sont politiquement trop faibles. ”

    Je te souhaite un bon dimanche, Loup.
    Ici il pleut.



  3. Dear Loup,

    this is an interesting article written by Dave Lindorff.
    He is right. Americans are easy to control. They are rather naive, on the average. When I am visiting the internet sites of US newspapers or blogs (which I do not do much) I am aghast at the nationalistic pathos: “Our high and mighty nation…”. I find this ridiculous, downright stupid, knowing that the USA are nearly bankrupt and losing the war in Afghanistan just as they lost the war in Vietnam.

    In France there is censorship of the press, too, surely!
    But on the other hand there are the “reboussier” news magazines such as the communist “Humanité Dimanche” or the leftist “Marianne”. There you’ll find quite outrageous comments on the USA. Bush and Obama would rage with fury if they read them.

    MARIANNE (19 décembre 2009 au 1er janvier 2019):
    par Jacques Guillemain, Versailles

    “… Dans la plus totale méconnaissance des particularités historiques et culturelles locales et en ignorant les lecons du passé, les stratèges du Pentagone ont foncé tete baissée dans l’inconnu pour enliser dans deux bourbiers inextricables … piège irakien et guepier afghan. … Des milliers de soldats tués, des dizaines de milliers de blessés et des centaines de milliards de dollars engloutis: un prix exorbitant pour un désastre.”

    Ah bah, censorship !



    • Merci Olivia de commenter l’article. Very good comment, it adds itself to the post, part of it — that’s the blogosphere. The old monkey I am is still fascinated by it, even after years. It’s so different from mass-media.

      Il existe aussi beaucoup de blogs et de blogueurs américains très critiques, contestataires.

      La blogosphère a permis à beaucoup de gens, qui étaient généralement filtrés hors des mass-médias, de s’exprimer — je penses surtout à cette minorité sociologique (on l’évaluerait généralement à environ 10% à 14% des gens) capable de se faire une idée ou une opinion vraiment personnelle, créatrice ou originale, une minorité composée de gens qui sont à l’affût des faits et des rapports entre les faits et les événements. Ils originent d’un peu partout dans le monde et nous permettent de beaucoup mieux comprendre et saisir ce dernier. *Ils n’ont pas peur de ce qu’ils savent et de ce qu’ils apprennent,* même si ça peut les ébranler. Ils sont curieux, parfois lucides, souvent très lucides, perspicaces. Un peu l’équivalent de l’enfant du conte qui est le premier à constater et à affirmer la nudité du roi (quand il est vraiment nu :-)

      L’important, c’est de pouvoir assimiler de nouveaux faits, d’accepter les prises de conscience, quitte à entamer sa propre opinion.

      Back to Lindorff’s article (my English was somewhat far away, or frozen up somewhere in the psyche – now it’s back, it “melted back” (!) who knowns why :) I found Lindorff’s article very revealing — and exciting, one reason being that I’d been told the same thing decades ago by an ex-soviet citizen, and I started to realize gradually how true it was.

      North-Americans — especially north of the Rio Grande to my knowledge — are very, very naive, yes, gullible — and the mass-media are obviously controlled, restrained, restraining.

      And yes, the present US and neo-conservative hubris (which can be found elsewhere too) are as shalow and boring as they can be cruel and frightening.

      Bye Olivia.


      (J’vais aller jeter un coup d’oeil à Marianne.)


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