A talk given by Mark Crispin Miller, Professor of Media, Culture, and Communication at NYU, at the Left Forum at John Jay College in New York City, May 31, 2015.
In this talk, Miller speaks about the collaboration of supposedly 'left' media and activists in the placing of tremendous obstacles around the discussion of topics such as election theft and 9/11, and their great reluctance even to investigate such topics for themselves. 'They don't want to go there,' says Miller. It's as though these issues are, 'in a bad part of town, and they would never go there.'
Miller further argues that the widespread employment of the term 'conspiracy theory' to thwart the questioning of just about any official story is 'probably the most effective propaganda drive in American history, maybe even world history.'
(Introduced by Les Jamieson.)
“End of a tyrant”: The Independent and The Guardian jubilant over the assassination of Libya’s deposed President Gaddafi
The Independent, 21 October 2011
The Guardian, 21 October 2011
The Independent, 21 October 2011
The Independent, 28 August 2011
The Observer, 20 March 2011
(The Observer is the Sunday edition of The Guardian)
Probably most people who have studied unofficial 911 literature are familiar with the idea of a left gatekeeper. If you don't, remember that Google is your friend.
However, I see recurring evidence of what amounts to HATEKeeping. By this I mean, smear type of rhetoric, broadly applied to an entire group, that paints them as hateful. The net effect of this is that it serves to divide the public, by encouraging primitive, emotional, tribablistic 'thinking' about the evil other. It thus inhibit real communication, which could lead to united political action (say, e.g., against the clear and present danger of plutocracy).
I'm sorry that I don't have the time to develop this idea, more. I will make a few more points, and hope that I inspire somebody to look more carefully into this.
1) Imputing hatred to others is just one way to generate hatred for the others. There's also speaking of the others in a contemptuous tone of voice. This is certainly done a great deal on the radio, by right-wing gasbags such as Rush Limbaugh, and a misanthrope I've heard in the NYC area called Bob Grant.
The Paranoid Style at Pacifica
posted by Eyal Press on 10/22/2009 @ 4:20pm
In his Wall Street Journal column yesterday, Tom Frank paid homage to Richard Hofstadter's famous essay, "The Paranoid Style in American Politics." As Frank noted, Birthers convinced that Barack Obama's birth certificate was forged in a plot to turn the United States into a fascist state are heirs to a long tradition of conspiracy thinking that has periodically flourished on the fringes of the American right.
But the paranoid style has seeped into some institutions on the left as well. For proof, look no further than a recent meeting of the Pacifica radio network's National Board, where a resolution was introduced that requires all programmers to disclose funding sources above $5,000. "The reason I created this motion," Chris Condon, a member of Pacifica's National Governance Committee, explained, "is because there has been a lot of debate about whether or not Amy Goodman has received CIA conduit foundation funding from the Ford Foundation and other places."
The Wonderful World Of Unbalanced Media,
Is Amy A CIA Agent?, BECK BLASTS FREE PRESS
by Danny Schechter
Beckian demagogues on the Left too: New Pacifica Mishigas' attack on Amy Goodman as a CIA agent.
Goodman: Paid by CIA to cover-up 9/11 Truth?
Christopher Condon, an ally of Pacifica’s interim director Grace Aaron, last month introduced a resolution at a meeting of the Pacifica National Board’s Governance Committee targeting Democracy Now! over allegations that is is being secretly funded by the CIA.
The action, which would require every Pacifica programmer to disclose all sources of funding above $5000 and related contracts, passed the Committee and is before the Pacifica National Board, meeting in Houston this weekend, for approval.
This week Doug Lain from the Diet Soap podcast and KMO of the C-realm podcast discuss 9/11 conspiracies on both their respective shows. There is a special emphasis on the pervasive resistance to critically engage with the subject, and an analysis of how leading alternative thinkers and dissidents seem unable to think critically on the subject. The C-Realm podcast is here and the Diet Soap podcast is here.
As many of us are aware, the Daily Kos is one of those supposedly "progressive" websites which puts an outright ban on 9/11 truth. No doubt in my mind that many of those people are CIA or some variant.
Today, "TylerFromNE" posted a diary entry imploring Daily Kos to reconsider its position. In addition, he posted a poll:
Is it time for DKos to stop arbitrarily silencing discussion of 9/11 so-called "conspiracy theories," given that the government is now irrefutably involved in a cover-up of the financing of the attacks?
Here's the current result (it might be locked now, I don't know):
63% 259 votes
33% 139 votes
I don't care what you say, it's still too much for me to accept that conspiracies actually do exist.
2% 11 votes
| 409 votes
So it appears that even their own readership disagrees with their anti-9/11 policy.
At the end of the thread of 301 comments, a chief admin, "Meteor Blade," made this following post:
June 22, 2009
By Michael Green
While everyone who writes about the recent Iranian election has very strong opinions, very few have very many, if any, firm facts. Even such a seemingly solid article by Mr. ZMag, Stephen Zunes, i.e., "Has the Election Been Stolen in Iran?" Posted on June 13, 2009, Printed on June 14, 2009, http://www.alternet.org/story/140626/
makes broad claims and assertions of patent theft without citing a single source or providing a satisfactory example of any of his claims. I have emailed Professor Zunes for solid examples and have asked him how he obtained so much information so quickly, but have not had a reply (his sites advises that he typically cannot answer all inquiries). For example, Zunes writes from the omniscient perspective:
In their September issue of THE FINE PRINT (TFP) the editors characterized their inspiration as coming from a core of dedicated “truth seekers” and affirmed their commitment to print “the Naked Truth”. But by October, they had retreated to a disturbing “mainstream” position that betrays their initial enthusiastic promise.
Read the September "Letters From The Editors" and their commitment to printing The Naked Truth:
I posted a link to my article on Glenn Greenwald's blog on Salon last night, and Greenwald has replied with this comment:
"None of what you wrote or accuse me of has anything to do with what I think. I never said I know who perpetrated the anthrax attacks because . . . I don't know, because . . . I haven't seen the evidence. What I have seen is unconvincing, but I find people like you who just invent theories without facts and then think you've discovered Truth to be exactly the same as those who blindly believe whatever the Government says."
All I want from him is an explanation, as I said here:
On August 3, 2008, Glen Greenwald wrote in Salon:
"It is so vital to emphasize that not a shred of evidence has yet been presented that the now-deceased Bruce Ivins played any role in the anthrax attacks, let alone that he was the sole or even primary culprit."
Now, in his retraction, er, update from yesterday, he writes:
Original Content at http://www.opednews.com/articles/Why-Are--Progressive--Medi-by-Bill-Willers-080711-105.html
July 11, 2008
Why Are "Progressive" Media Burying 9/11?
By Bill Willers
If you have a spare few minutes, peruse http://patriotsquestion911.com/ and see that more than 130 senior military (including generals), intelligence (including CIA and FBI) and governmental figures (all the way to cabinet level), 490 engineers and architects, 120 pilots, 260 academics, 210 survivors and families (includes fire, police and emergency medical personnel) and 140 celebrities and media professionals question the 9/11 Commission Report. Really, scroll down and read the sometimes scathing commentary.
Now add to these the many top level military figures from around the world including defense ministers and secretaries from Britain, Germany, Canada and Russia ( http://www.sf911truth.org/ and scroll down).
This article is by Eric Larsen
[Eric's website has been mysteriously down for several days and he sent out this article with a cover letter to his mailing list. He is the author of A Nation Gone Blind: America in an Age of Simplification and Deceit. Read an excellent review of the book Posted on Online Journal by Sean M. Madden. I hope this thoughtful recent piece by Eric will go viral. He would like it to be reposted widely. I came across it on Atlantic Free Press whose website is suddenly unaccessible.]
Debate? Was that the word just used? Debate over 9/11?
"... and Popular Mechanics’ issue on the subject is a good place to start."
-Singer turned pundit, David Rovics/CommonDreams.org
CommonDreams is a highly visited "progressive" news site. The focus there is mainly on reprinting corporate-produced pieces that somehow share the biases of the editors. They do also however print editorials from freelance writers, and when the issue of the 9/11 cover up is breached, only one side is permitted to weigh in. And that side is permitted to outright attack and to libel the other side, the 'other' side being the amorphous "9/11 Truth Movement."
No response in kind is permitted; it doesn't matter the content, nor the quality of the evidence. This policy has rightly earned CommonDreams the reputation of "gatekeepers" among disgruntled readers.
I posted this earlier on David Rovics' blog, and though it might be worth posting here...
David. I love your music, but I was quite disappointed when I read your 9/11 essay on Rabble.ca, and have been following your appearances on the web since then.
I wanted to ask you a couple of questions directly, and thought your blog would be the best place to do so.
First, I wanted to tell you that I was disappointed because I felt your article was written based on your emotions, and did not actually discuss any factual information. I understand and share your frustration regarding the abrasiveness of some 9/11 Truthers, but feel that your comments contribute to the divisiveness that many of us on The Left are trying to patch up.
Eric Larsen--novelist, English professor emeritus, trenchant social critic and 9/11 truth supporter--will be my guest today, Monday 4/7/08, on Dynamic Duo, 4-6 pm CT, http://www.gcnlive.com Network 4 Eric recently blasted the left gatekeepers: http://www.ericlarsen.net/foodforthought220.127.116.118.html See excerpt below.
Singer-songwriter David Rovics http://www.davidrovics.com/ for his part recently ripped on the 9/11 truth movement and defended those we call left gatekeepers:http://sketchythoughts.blogspot.com/2008/04/david-rovics-on-911-truth-movement.html I've had an email conversation with him since then, and he says he'll look at http://www.patriotsquestion911.com, http://www.ae911truth.org, and http://www.pilotsfor911truth.org and would be happy to have a radio conversation with a 9/11 truth jihadi! This suggests to me that unlike certain people on the other side, Rovics has integrity and a reasonably open mind. It should be a great conversation.