Category Archives: Media

Dance, Puppets, Dance; or, Why it is Absolutely Foolish to React to the Media

On any given day, it is the job of the writers and producers, publishers and pundits, propagandists and activists of the political media to identify what will agitate the public and to push their buttons and pull their strings. It is part of the job of these professions to sensationalize, to induce sensation. The daily and ongoing goal of the political media, entertainment, and propaganda industries large and small is to manipulate the public using cheap tactics to infuriate, motivate, and divide them according to political parties, factions, labels, and contentious issues, either in order to sell media or show advertising to consumers, or to encourage irrational partisanship, to obtain the currency of votes or money.

On a deeper level, it is naive to believe that it will have escaped those in power and behind power that maintaining an agitated, divided public renders the challenge of social control far easier. In the midst of this distraction, the total conquest and regimentation of people herded and labelled into groups who are constantly, repeatedly divided and agitated against each other can be gradually achieved with little difficulty.

Major political parties and contentious issues such as abortion, like sensationalized media reports on outrages, effectively function as devices to distract the public. This is their primary purpose from the point of view of social control by those in a position sufficient to care little which party holds office as long as the effective status quo is maintained, and preferably never discussed or questioned. If the important trillion-dollar issues to those individuals are the likes of remaining powerful while maintaining the fiction of participatory popular government, keeping central banks and their influence over them, keeping war industry money flowing, and generally keeping tax money flowing to their privileged interests, et cetera, then their only concern about a hot-button social issue is that it never be resolved.

The “mainstream” political parties and labels like left-wing or right-wing (and nationalities) are useful  brands—on the level of soft-drink loyalties—to encourage hostility and bickering. Aggressive arguments over relatively pointless and relatively unimportant offenses, often based on overly-broad mischaracterization of groups adopted as enemies, are useful devices to monopolize conversation.

The reporting of the “mainstream” media—not coincidentally owned by some of the most powerful individuals in the world—exists first of all to hide all substantive interests of the powerful from attention and accurate analysis, as well as propagandizing in the midst of distraction. A second-rank media of self-appointed intellectuals and bloggers echoes similar talking points, and chiefly reacts to the mainstream media outlets. The “mainstream” consensus functions to exclude all real issues from discussion.

These are means to insulate all true roots of the system from notice and upheaval. It is typical and almost certain that no dialogue promoted in major media outlets or in the second rank of reactive intellectuals (or quasi- and anti-intellectuals) will get at the substance of how the world works, or identify “the real issues” which should concern people. All alternative models and ways of thinking sufficient to break this stranglehold are typically excluded from consideration.

Indeed, consideration itself is the enemy of the political system. Careful thought, patience, toleration, and open-mindedness are antidotes to the reactive politics of the easily-led. Puppets have no time to think, however. A constant state of passionate agitation over issues and divisions sufficient to arouse loyalties and hatreds is, as Orwell noted, the desirable state in which the public should be maintained, from the point of view of a one-party Elite.

Do people really love science, or neat pictures of space, and dinosaurs?

Very many people talk about how they love science. But they are only fans and fetishists without patient skepticism and suspension of judgment as well as curiosity. Without these things there is no science of any sort. It is all the more obvious when the greater number are interpreting any crisis (real or imagined) that we still live with the fear-driven speculation of the dark ages.

One sees more anger at quoting facts and efforts to be accurate than any supposed fondness for science and rational methodology. The ones capable of conscientious science are still rare exceptions in the superstitious population; most people only dabble in the coolheaded traits of logic and epoché.

The ordinary modes of human thinking are magical, religious, and social. We want our wishes to come true; we want the universe to care about us; we want the esteem of our peers. For most people, wanting to know the truth about the world is way, way down the list. Scientific objectivity is a freakish, unnatural, and unpopular mode of thought, restricted to small cliques whom the generality of citizens regard with dislike and mistrust. There is probably a sizable segment in any population that believes scientists should be rounded up and killed.

— John Derbyshire

My favorite example? My pleas for sanity during the last big pandemic flu scare. I dared to point out that, contra media-stoked fears, fewer people were dying than was usual for a flu season. Keep in mind that since I worked for one of the preeminent flu vaccine experts at the time who had hired me off a $10 million pandemic flu grant, and I was thus well-informed on epidemiological developments, I should have been listened to that the media-driven emergency was unfounded on mortality rates. Compared to statistics, each death was anecdotal evidence, however much it was a personal tragedy (a distinction a great many cannot grasp). I am still waiting on that apology for how I was shouted down by some for thinking (and being right about the “pandemic”) while people were frightened, instead of joining in the freakout.

Or take the example of current hysteria about nuclear power in Japan, whereas:

Nuclear fatalities in the last ten years: 7
Wind farm fatalities in the last ten years: 44.
In those ten years nuclear provided thirty times the energy of wind. This means in the last decade, nuclear has been around 200 times safer than wind on an energy produced/accidents basis.

Ours is not a scientific age, but a deeply and spontaneously irrational one, if we are speaking about the predominant influences. Science has not been absorbed into society and properly accounted; only the love of technology and what it can bring.

One cannot hope to solve a problem of such depth without first identifying it without illusions, including those of Enlightenment Reason and Scientific Revolution being as easy as intent, and as though the human race is progressing on a teleological march of history.

The truth is this problem is not solved, and we are not on the way to solving it, despite tremendous interest in science and massive social investment in science—much of which became sheer scientism, instead, or pseudoscience.

The only hope of a more pervasive solution comes through proper education of intellectuals, as well as a better-informed and applied human psychology that admits that conscious and deliberate reason through systematic thinking is not a primary human trait but a secondary one requiring special training and an amenable disposition. (I have noted other factors of educational decline in this essay, including the way schools developed for instruction.)

Eroding supporters for Wikileaks through PC FUD (Updated)

I’d like to note a well-deserved takedown of Assange’s pissant ex-associate Domscheit-Berg who, like jealous John Young of Cryptome, has smeared Assange in the media circuit at every opportunity. Personal attacks on Assange have so frequently hinged on his supposed egomania, it’s important to point to the utility of that characterization against serious political dissidents in this day and age, when only status-quo politicians are allowed to be egomaniacs:

It’s the same old argument the Right has always used: anyone who seriously challenges the status quo is just a narcissist.

Many more great points here; I’d call it required reading in the Wikileaks saga:

“Inside WikiLeaks”: Revenge Of The Second Banana – By Ramon Glazov – The eXiled

But now I want to move on to cover one particularly important observation made there:

‎Dickhead or not, at least Assange can deal with pressure. He’d rather go fugitive, sleep rough and live on his wits than surrender his servers. This is the guy I’d trust in a guerrilla war campaign, the old “inflict-and-endure.” Compare that with Domscheit-Berg, who claims to give homelessness a try for half a year before running to his fiancee’s doorstep. Even his tolerance for messy hotel rooms is much lower than any of Assange’s other lackeys.

In other words, a pussy. But aggressively marketing his pussy-ness, with the goal not so much of making the reader like Domscheit-Berg, as in trying to peel away Assange’s crucial left-progressive supporters.

… and that, I believe, gets at the brilliance of the psychological campaign of FUD attacking Assange; by drawing “left-progressives” who are so frequently distracted by issues of political correctness and gender to question his behavior with regard to women, no matter how suspect the situation with regard to his accusations, it was possible to peel some of those crucial supporters away. The “respectable” Domscheit-Berg’s anti-Assange campaign is another way.

All that is necessary is to spread FUD about Assange and Wikileaks that matters to some supporters, and cause them to wander away scratching their heads, preferring not to commit, not to get involved, and not to speak out on his behalf. It is unnecessary to strip everyone away at once, because the process can be repeated using different tactics of smears and attacks, different accusations and “insiders” with reputed personal information. And in fact, all that is necessary is to dissuade enough supporters to cause Wikileaks difficulty operating—not to break them completely. A hamstrung Wikileaks cannot necessarily contend with immense pressures of more overt attacks by government powers, e.g. on hosting and volunteering and financing, by passing anti-leaks laws, by legal charges, etc.

This campaign may not be one of centralized design by an agency or organization (though it may be), but a collaborative effort. Many agencies and personalities want to see Assange fail, for a variety of reasons including personal ones as well as political ones. A common motive may draw actions together as a result, without any precise, conspiratorial coordination of the tactics, beyond the plans particular intelligence agencies have pursued. These spook agencies may or may not have been behind the Swedish-feminist accusations against Assange or Domscheit-Berg’s media campaign, but almost certainly have seen the cleverness in utilizing both, and probably helped to aid and promote them opportunistically.

A non-centralized campaign does not make the strategy less effective against Wikileaks’ supporters, many of whom have the Achilles heel that they imagine their heroes must be politically correct, personally moralistic and never hubristic. To say more, many are uncomfortable with heroes as characters who stand out—probably, masculine men who are unapologetic.

Still others, like John Young of Cryptome, have spread classic conspiracy-theory FUD—that Wikileaks is a CIA front. This fits in perfectly well with the worldview of those who always suspect that behind any purported hero there is a leering Illuminati. Fortunately, the loss of potential support among the fringe of anti-government activism is questionable; these are the people who make it a point to doubt everything ostensible, because they have found evidence unnecessary and Occam’s razor wanting, compared to their confirmed worldview of a global elite in virtual control of everything but internet rants of the elite of paranoia who always know better than the sheeple.

Still other fickle would-be supporters may be turned off by some other flaw they perceive in Wikileaks or Assange—and of course it will be possible to point to excesses and errors of judgment by an imperfect man undergoing enormous strain, and in a wholly-new type of organization undergoing growing pains—as though they imagine that it will be possible to reserve their support for a more ideal personality or organization at some time in the future. The noncommittal have no such finicky luxury, in my opinion. It is unlikely this war over public knowledge of secrets being kept from them, and over keeping the internet open will be waged a second time if it is lost. Like it or not, Wikileaks and Assange have become Important to that fight. Picking at minor flaws seems to me well out of place at this time, like complaining that the only knight on your side of the battlefield is not white.

UPDATE: Danny Weston has drawn my attention to another classic FUD vector being applied to Assange: purported anti-Semitism in hearsay. Note that at the same time, conspiratorial accusations against Assange include Israeli/Mossad sponsorship!

UPDATE 2: It’s worth noting that FUD has also become standard operating procedure whenever mass protests have challenged the status quo, also. Antithetical political parties, wings and cliques elsewhere cast aspersions on the organizers and protestors and their motives, as neoconservatives et al. have recently in Egypt, claiming an Islamist agenda, against all evidence. Meanwhile, since the “color revolutions” of some ex-Soviet republics like Georgia and substantive charges about their funding and orchestration by “pro-democracy” (US) agency, conspiracy theorists have duly circulated the flimsiest claims about puppet-master orchestration of each and every protest (including Iran) and each potential or successful revolution (including Egypt).

As with all FUD, it’s not necessary to convince others to actually become convinced of these claims, because the memetic infection of rumors carries the fear, uncertainty and doubt much farther afield. The FUD effect is predominantly indirect and subtle, not requiring true believers but only an unconscious reaction.

Presumed guilty, kept in solitary, forcibly drugged, denied exercise and sheets

In “The inhumane conditions of Bradley Manning’s detention,” Greenwald has assembled a remarkable piece you really must read.

as is true of many prisoners subjected to warped treatment of this sort, the brig’s medical personnel now administer regular doses of anti-depressants to Manning to prevent his brain from snapping from the effects of this isolation.

Isn’t forcibly drugging accused prisoners something that a totalitarian government does, like the Soviet Union, for example? And isn’t making excuses that torture is “necessary,” and the assumption of guilt instead of innocence characteristic of a dystopian society?

Not only does the US government not represent the free world, it increasingly represents the barbarian world of rule by force and fear. This is the ancient root and origin of political power, but the instincts of civilization have for thousands of years been campaigning to ameliorate it, through restraints such as individual rights and protections for the accused, through condemnation of torture and persecution, and through the promotion of empathic humanism, and freedom of expression.

Which brings me to Greenwald’s assessment of Manning’s motivation based on what little we have been allowed to read of Manning speaking for himself:

That’s a whistleblower in the purest and most noble form: discovering government secrets of criminal and corrupt acts and then publicizing them to the world not for profit, not to give other nations an edge, but to trigger “worldwide discussion, debates, and reforms.”

It is clear that Manning devoted himself to checking the erosion of civilization so evident in the recent tide of barbarism. He is a soldier fighting to restore human civilization, a hero who was not fooled by uniforms and nationalism, who recognized barbarism when he saw it and rebelled.

From my Time and Tide: Eroding Civilization:

We wish for a rock to hold back the tide, when it turns against us. Or we watch our little pool, and we pretend for a while to see nothing else of the ocean. But time passes, and change comes in. We cannot secede into a private life, for the protection of private lives is an accomplishment of civilized society, and that is precisely what is under threat.

Civilization is not a product of technological, material comforts—the other way around, rather. Nor is it orchestration by managing hierarchies, but an innovation of organic society understood to be based on connected individuals. Civilization is an ideal achieved in human society to the extent that its people align their concepts and organization to distinguish individuality, protect and foster personal expression, and retain the achievements of individuals within cultural forms.

The True Face of Power, and Power’s Mask Made Ridiculous

Glenn Greenwald tweeted:

Anyone who can get through this Press Release without cackling very audibly has stronger self-discipline than I do: http://is.gd/ilMGC

Upon clicking, I immediately guffawed, because it’s a press release from the US State Department:

U.S. to Host World Press Freedom Day in 2011

Oh yes, and it gets better (sarcastic emphasis added):

New media has empowered citizens around the world to report on their circumstances, express opinions on world events, and exchange information in environments sometimes hostile to such exercises of individuals’ right to freedom of expression. At the same time, we are concerned about the determination of some governments to censor and silence individuals, and to restrict the free flow of information. We mark events such as World Press Freedom Day in the context of our enduring commitment to support and expand press freedom and the free flow of information in this digital age.

Today, of all days? The level of hypocrisy is inexpressable. As is the level of arrogance. Today of all black days, the US State Department releases this press release.

One can only laugh—at them.

The face of the State they want you to see celebrates itself, preens and postures, self-congratulates and claims patronizing “concern” for the oppressed. “Freedom” is here only an absurd advertisement—only an empty word.

Meanwhile, the State—the political class of rulers, their friends and bootlickers—oppress those who exercise freedom. They cast freedom of speech aside without a single hearing. They call for the silencing or murder of a journalist and publisher whose offense is telling the truth, who is today a political prisoner held without bail on laughable charges, while Wikileaks has been hounded and attacked at every turn despite legal protection under the first Amendment in America.

The true face of the State is that of thousands of petty tyrants who threaten and censor anyone who exposes their incompetence, corruption, and narcissism, their scandals and genuine contempt for life and freedom for all those outside of the privileged and political class.

The comparison between the face and the mask is stark and grotesque.

They think the world can be fooled forever. But the joke is on them, because the world is seeing behind that mask. Julian Assange has risked himself so you will see that true face. Never forget.

Here’s the face we demand to see again, free, alive, and well:

Free Assange

Legal procedure and business ethics aren’t too much to expect from Amazon

Supplement to my last post, and following up on the Amazon boycott due to Amazon Web Services’ breach of contract with WikiLeaks at the mere behest of Joe Lieberman et al., and the mendacious, libelous AWS release excusing themselves:

I have read many people say they excuse “understand” Amazon’s lack of backbone, in that Amazon is a corporation with shareholders, and a business, and made a business decision. I too, “understand” this, but I am not willing to excuse the actions of unnecessary complicity, and attitudes of complicity, simply because of employment at a corporation instead of a government. Corporations should not get a pass on ethics simply because we know that as organizations, they tend to make malleable decisions based on money instead of principles. People still work there, and should be held to a reasonable standard of business ethics.

This boycott is really not about asking Amazon to go to the mat to defend free speech—and it’s true that this cause is not their purpose as a for-profit organization. This boycott is about their customers expecting them to adhere to the legal procedure for adjudicating free speech in America. Responsibility to shareholders did not require Amazon to depart from the first Amendment and due process; if anything, that responsibility should induce them to adhere to the proper legal procedure of courts, and to adhere to contractual responsibility to their hosted customer.

Amazon doesn’t need to cave in immediately just because Joe Lieberman’s staffers or whoever else makes a personal inquiry that has no force of law. That’s encouraging personal abuse of power by officials, and it sets a terrible precedent for all kinds of cases of free speech on the web, especially because Amazon is a multi-billion-dollar multinational corporation, and a potentially influential example among web hosts. If every time some official or officer wants a site taken down without judicial review, they can, the internet will effectively be controlled without a law passed. (I am told this has been happening a lot in the UK; the police simply request a host remove a site based on political speech, and it is shut down, with no court involved.)

I wouldn’t remotely blame Amazon for giving in to legal paperwork. I don’t think anyone with any sense of business would. But if censors want to shut down your customer that is paying you to host them, make the censors get a court order. Make them have to go to a judge or grand jury who may say there’s enough merit for a case. And in fact, since there is a legal precedent protecting WikiLeaks’ role as publisher here (the Daniel Ellsberg/Pentagon Papers case before the Supreme Court of the US, which the New York Times won), it’s not clear that this would have happened. I think that’s probably why such a shady behind-the-scenes act happened instead.

In this case also, Amazon lied unnecessarily in their release excusing themselves, which was libelous and toadying, repeating a stock smear against WikiLeaks (endangerment), their own hosting customer. That just made it worse. I was waiting to see what Amazon would say or do to account for themselves, but their response sealed it for me.

Amazon wants to be judged as acting willfully, not out of cowardice. Fine. Amazon are not helpless “victims” of government pressure, as some of the reflexively pro-business anti-boycott libertarians (who neglect the corporations in corporatism) have assumed, until that pressure is applied beyond what a corporate giant can resist, and we don’t know that it was. In fact, we have no reason to think so, whereas we know that legal procedure or requirements had not become involved—just the opinion of some national security apparatchiks and the implied threats of a senator with a Napoleon complex.

The people at Amazon’s corporate headquarters are responsible for their actions and attitudes, and making sure those comply to ethical standards that customers and human beings who care about free speech and/or rule of law wish them to have. If they throw those expectations aside, their customers are perfectly justified in shopping elsewhere, and telling Amazon why.

Finally: I am gratified to see that WikiLeaks has now returned like Lazarus, thanks to a Swiss address and hosting. Would that it were possible for the American corporations and government to sustain their own laws designed to sustain the tradition of free speech.

Why you must support WikiLeaks’ rights, even if you disagree with WikiLeaks

There is no functional difference between politically sensitive speech being removed because a giant, legalized government bureaucracy regulates the internet, or because officials abuse power to ask web hosting providers to remove it, and they all comply instead of citing legal protections.

Free speech only survives if you insist on it.

This is why sending a message is critical. Any company that is willing to bow to the censors without a legal requirement to do so needs to hear from you, whether it’s Amazon, paypal, or anything else. If possible, don’t give them your business, tell them exactly why, and tell your friends too. Even if you can’t replace a service or give them up entirely, please, give them a piece of your mind anyway.

Go online and search for WikiLeaks mirrors, right now. Notice how many of them have been taken down, and replaced by their host’s default page?*

The critical turning point for free speech on the internet is happening, right now. Will the internet be worth a damn, or not? The time to act is slipping away. What will you do?

*EDIT: note that some hosts may have been under assault by denial-of-service attacks instead of caving in, probably attacks by spook agencies; this was apparently true of the US registrar, EveryDNS.

More backbone, less bullshit, Amazon.

Here is the letter I pasted into my request to close my Amazon account (find it with “Help”) to explain why I will no longer be a customer or partner of Amazon. If you make the same decision, which I encourage, I invite you to borrow appropriate pieces of this text in your own message to customer service.

For a company that wishes to be viewed as respectable and reputable, as well as a company that depends on freedom of speech for its business, it was perverse enough to kowtow to anti-free-speech fascists like Joe Lieberman, but it is adding insult to injury to make libelous public statements about WikiLeaks instead of honesty about Amazon’s “censorship” of content (Amazon’s own word in its defense against a recent outcry over unpopular content sold on Amazon).

Amazon Web Services would not have hosted WikiLeaks previously if they had objections to their material, and Amazon must be aware that government documents cannot be copyrighted, so Amazon’s stated explanations are nonsense. It is further unbelievable and duplicitous to suggest that AWS was not aware of WikiLeaks’ identity and purpose as a customer (“AWS does not pre-screen its customers”), while “massive DDOS attacks…were successfully defended against.” WikiLeaks is also one of the most famous web sites in the world.

Amazon should not lie to its customers. Amazon should not be in the business of reacting to officials’ personal requests for censorship of speech protected under the first Amendment (cf. the Pentagon Papers case), nor should Amazon anticipate legal intentions of prosecutors. Amazon should support free speech under the legal process. In the absence of a court order, and without benefit of due process, WikiLeaks should not be judged on the basis of mere political accusation. Amazon should not have shut down the server access that WikiLeaks paid for, especially without notification.

I have been a loyal customer of Amazon for many years, and an Associate, as well as selling my books and Kindle downloads as an author. From now on, I will encourage everyone I know to shop elsewhere instead. Like other bloggers and writers, I have also publicly expressed my objections to Amazon’s servile, and now toadying response to the persecution of its hosting customer, WikiLeaks. Unless Amazon admits the truth, apologizes to WikiLeaks, and reverses its censorship, Amazon will lose a great deal of business from all the many supporters of free speech, and WikiLeaks.

Please close my Amazon account, including my Associates account, and my Digital Text Platform account, and do not contact me with any marketing.

Sincerely,
Colin Patrick Barth

Don’t like the word “boycott”? Some don’t. Just view it as a personal decision to encourage honesty and discourage dishonesty, and to encourage US web hosts to uphold legal protections to freedom of speech, and discourage adoption of the fascist line as an official company position. These are your purchases, and you have a choice; if you think freedom of speech on the internet is important (even if you don’t favor WikiLeaks), express yourself—and please, think about a world in which you can’t.

Don’t lie to your customers, Amazon. And don’t toady to the fascists. [updated]

“I realize there is a variety of sentiments about boycotts, with some people arguing that Amazon is merely the “victim” here, but that strikes me as quite unrealistic. … Amazon is quite a powerful corporation that did not need to capitulate to the likes of Joe Lieberman, and it would not have done so had it been the slightest bit inclined to resist.” — Glenn Greenwald

Well, it looks like my previous hopes that Amazon would respond appropriately and reverse or properly account for their actions were dashed.

Amazon.com’s Excuse: WikiLeaks ‘Harming People’
Spokesman Insists Ousting Site Was Ideologically Motivated, Not Cowardice

1) These are unbelievable claims by Amazon, as the link points out.
2) These statements are if anything, more troubling than just caving in, because they are toeing the line against WikiLeaks.

Well, shoot. Looks like we’re going to have to go through with this boycott after all. This will be enormously inconvenient, and it may take some time to remove all Amazon links from Promethea.org, which has been an Amazon affiliate for years. Not to mention, I have always favored the site for shopping, and always keep track of hundreds of books and other items on my wish lists. I have even been selling a Kindle download of one of my essays.

No more. Amazon needs to get the message that there are costs for kowtowing to the commissars who revile freedom of speech, and other hosts need to look at this boycott and think twice before following their servile example. Without hosts willing to circulate information that government officials don’t like, the internet will be worthless. We must at least expect that hosts will require legal papers before they respond to the wishes of officials.

Note that the legal precedent protecting Wikileaks’ free speech is strong (cf. the Pentagon Papers), which is probably why Joe Lieberman and the other fascists would rather place a “friendly call,” and hope this abuse of position imitates legal weight in order to coerce companies into achieving the same result without having to take a risk on the courts and due process.

UPDATE: A direct link to Amazon Web Services’ statement is available here. It contains outright lies about what WikiLeaks has been doing. In particular:

1) Amazon claims: “It’s clear that WikiLeaks doesn’t own or otherwise control all the rights to this classified content.” FACT: The US government is prohibited from owning copyright. No one can control rights to those documents.

2) Amazon claims: “it is not credible that the extraordinary volume of 250,000 classified documents that WikiLeaks is publishing could have been carefully redacted in such a way as to ensure that they weren’t putting innocent people in jeopardy.” FACT: WikiLeaks is gradually publishing the Cablegate files, and the small fraction they have published so far have been redacted. Also note that Amazon did not object to hosting WikiLeaks during past leaks of classified military information on the excuse of “putting innocent people in jeopardy,” so they clearly do not believe this nonsense themselves.

Belated WikiLeaks post

I keep meaning to post something substantial on the latest Cablegate revelations courtesy of WikiLeaks, and the ongoing saga of persecution of this heroic site I’ve admired for some time, but there has been too much happening too quickly.

I will simply say that Glenn Greenwald has been doing an admirable job over at Salon, and you should read him:

3) Joe Lieberman emulates Chinese dictators
2) The moral standards of WikiLeaks critics
1) WikiLeaks reveals more than just government secrets

Also, Justin Raimondo:

2) WikiLeaks vs. the Political Class
1) The Big Dump

Suddenly we have “investigative reporting” with impact, and the MSM hates it. Thank Bradley Manning, Julian Assange, et al. for striking blows against the secret regime’s ability to conduct conspiracy* in the name of national security, with much of the MSM perfectly compliant.

* See State and Terrorist Conspiracies by Julian Assange.