Wednesday, July 25, 2018

The Guardian UK:
"Terrorist attacks committed by Muslim extremists receive 357% more US press coverage than those committed by non-Muslims, according to new research from the University of Alabama. The researchers controlled for factors like target type, number of fatalities, and whether or not the perpetrators were arrested before reaching their final statistic.

Terrorist attacks committed by non-Muslims (or where the religion was unknown) received an average of 15 headlines, while those committed by Muslim extremists received 105 headlines. ...

The disparity in media coverage is particularly out of sync with the reality given that white and rightwing terrorists carried out nearly twice as many terrorist attacks as Muslim extremists between 2008 and 2016."

-->Our mainstream media distorts reporting on extremist events, showing its racism against Muslims in America. The NYT didn't carry this story, and we have to go to a foreign newspaper to find out how distorted the US media is. 


Common Dreams:
"Corporate Democrats are extremely worried about the wave of progressive enthusiasm that is sweeping the country in red and blue states alike, and—according to a report by NBC News on Sunday—they are beginning to organize a 'counterrevolution' to beat it back.

Ignoring survey after survey showing that progressive priorities like Medicare for All, a living wage, and tuition-free public college are overwhelmingly popular among the American public, Democratic politicians and operatives with the notorious think-tank Third Way used an invite-only event in Columbus, Ohio on Friday to tout an alternative agenda that centers on "opportunity" and access rather than equality—a platform that explicitly avoids alienating the ultra-wealthy.

'You're not going to make me hate somebody just because they're rich. I want to be rich!' Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) said during last week's closed-door event, which was titled 'Opportunity 2020.' "

-->The NYT has just discovered the Bernie revolution (after several years). The adjectives used by our newspaper of record, "left-wing," "populist," and "far left," show how uncomfortable the monied establishment is with such progressives. 

As for Ms. Ocasio Cortez victory in her primary, the NYT wrote: "While she has quickly become a political sensation, however, she has also revealed her inexperience. She provoked some outrage by referring to Israel’s 'occupation' of Palestine..." Israel doesn't occupy Palestine? Only in the Zionist addled mind of our mainstream media.


Common Dreams:
"While much of the world's attention is currently centered on efforts by Russian operatives to sow discord among the American electorate with fake social media posts and 'troll farms' during the 2016 presidential election, an Oxford Internet Institute study published Friday found that use of social media by governments looking to 'spread junk information and propaganda to voters' has become a global phenomenon.

'Social media manipulation is big business,' the researchers found. 'We estimate that tens of millions of dollars are being spent on social media manipulation campaigns, involving tens of thousands of professional staff.'

In 30 of the 48 countries examined, Oxford researchers discovered 'evidence of political parties using computational propaganda during  elections or referenda. In emerging and Western democracies, sophisticated data analytics and political bots are being used to poison the information environment, promote skepticism and distrust, polarize voting constituencies, and undermine the integrity of democratic processes.' "

->Why no coverage of this story in the US media? How bad would Russia's interference look if every country was doing it?

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

"For a public radio service, NPR is notoriously known for its lack of diversity within its staff, audience and guests invited onto their shows—problems that NPR has itself acknowledged.

A new FAIR study finds that NPR’s diversity problem also extends into the board of trustees of its most popular member stations: Two out of three board members are male, and nearly three out of four are non-Latino whites. Fully three out of every four trustees of the top NPR affiliates belong to the corporate elite. ...

Out of the 259 total board members, 194—or 75 percent—have corporate backgrounds. Many of these board members are executives in banks, investment firms, consulting companies and corporate law firms. Some of the elite corporations include Verizon, Bank of America and Citigroup."

-->National Plutocrat Radio? The NYT wasn't interested in printing this story, probably because of all the male, white, corporate cronies on its board of directors.  


Common Dreams:
"A new analysis from The Associated Press delves into how billionaires are pouring their cash into state-level charter school advocacy groups.

Since 2006, such spending from the uber wealthy, via their private foundations and charities, has added up to nearly half a billion dollars, the analysis found.
AP, which looked at 52 charter advocacy groups in 44 states and Washington, D.C., also reported that the deep-pocketed donors 'directly channel support to pro-charter candidates through related political action committees or their own contributions.'

Case in point: the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which provides 'an extreme example of how billionaires are influencing state education policy by giving money to state-level charter support organizations to sustain, defend, and expand the charter schools movement across the country.' "

-->The NYT is a friend of both the billionaires and of charter schools. It didn't print this story, but did carry the AP version on the NYT website.


Common Dreams:
"Confirming grave fears among progressives that Facebook's efforts to become an arbiter of "trustworthy" news would prioritize corporate and right-wing outlets over independent sources, the social media giant on Wednesday unveiled the first slate of news segments it will air in the coming days as part of its effort to combat "misinformation"—and the schedule is chock-full of Fox News.

'The network leads off coverage first thing in the morning, snagged the prime mid-day spot with a version of Fox News Update' ... and will get two weekend time slots,' notes Gizmodo's AJ Dellinger. 'It's the only news network that is a part of the Facebook-funded project to have a show on Facebook Watch every day of the week.'

Dellinger goes on to argue that Facebook's decision to include a heavy dose of Fox News in its Facebook Watch project is part of the platform's effort to 'placate its critics on the right,' who insist that the tech behemoth is somehow biased against conservative news sources."

-->Facebook pitching Fox news to the nation. The story didn't interest the NYT, although the result could put Trump's opinions front and center for millions of Facebook users.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Common Dreams:
"An investigation sparked by reports from concerned neighbors who suspected that immigrant children were being housed in a vacant office building in Phoenix, illustrated the secrecy surrounding the care of children by the U.S. government and defense contractors that have been hired to help enforce the Trump administration's 'zero tolerance' immigration policy.

Reveal at the Center for Investigative Reporting reported this weekend on an empty commercial space in Arizona's capital, where neighbors had seen groups of Spanish-speaking children being taken in recent weeks. The children were not seen coming out until three weeks later, just after President Donald Trump signed an executive order ending his policy of separating families at the U.S.-Mexico border.

The building, which has 'dark windows, no kitchen, and only a few toilets,' had been leased to MVM, Inc.—a defense contractor which, as Common Dreams reported last month, won an $8 million five-year contract. ... Reveal reporters confirmed that according to the lease, 'the building is not allowed to be used for sleeping or cooking and can be used only for general business office purposes.' "
-->Substandard housing for kids. No wonder there is so much secrecy around  these private contractors. The NYT didn't print this story; it makes the US look too bad. Instead of saving children, the US is ripping them from their parents and locking them up in crude warehouses. 

"The carnage in Yemen drones on with no end in sight. More than 10,000 Yemenis have been killed since 2015 when the Saudis entered what was a civil war. So far two million people have been displaced as Saudi ground troops and air forces wage a one-sided assault, with U.S. help, against the poorest country in the region.

A Saudi blockade has prevented food, medicine and volunteer doctors from entering Yemen, resulting in what the United Nations now describes as the world’s greatest man-made humanitarian catastrophe; mass starvation and a cholera epidemic of epic proportions are on the horizon. Already more than 2,200 people have died from cholera and over 400,000 Yemeni children are severely malnourished. An estimated 17 million people do not have reliable access to food and 22 million people are in need of humanitarian aid."

-->The NYT's coverage of this story is typical of the empire's newspaper. In a story entitled "How Yemen Became a Humanitarian Nightmare: Untangling a Complex War," the NYT reporter doesn't even include the US in a section on "Who are the main parties to the conflict?" 


Common Dreams:
"Actions Speak Louder Than Words: Prominent Group 'End Citizens United' Called Out for Backing Democrats Drowning in Corporate Cash.

If their organization only supported candidates who firmly pledged no PAC money, their contributions could breathe much-needed life into grassroots campaigns. Instead it looks more like an intentional obfuscation. ...

In a detailed analysis of the ECU's recent endorsements, fundraising efforts, and campaign spending, Donald Shaw of Sludge—an outlet that covers political corruption—found that the group deploys 'a large part of their campaign contributions to re-elect corporate-financed Democratic incumbents.' "

-->The big story is how the Democrats use popular movements to harvest votes rather than to change the system. Because the Dems are part of the system, a truth you will never see in the NYT.

Wednesday, July 04, 2018

Common Dreams:
"NBC News reports that Melania Trump earned between $100,000 and $1 million in royalties in 2017 from the photo service Getty Images according to the president's financial disclosure form. The First Lady had a deal with Getty stating that 187 of the photos of her that it licensed to news outlets—all taken between 2010 and 2016 by a Belgian photographer named Regine Mahaux—had to be used in positive coverage of Melania Trump. ..

The photos that were subject to the First Lady's agreement are marked as 'restricted assets' on the site, and users who attempt to license them are told thay can be used only for 'positive stories.' ...

As Newsweek reported, 'Such royalty deals are common for celebrities, but one for a first lady is not and it's even rarer for a media outlet to guarantee what kind of coverage it would grant the subject of a story.' "

-->The first lady selling her images to the media, and demanding that they only be used in positive stories. How low can the Trumps go? This current disgrace, however, was not reported in the NYT.


The Guardian UK:
"Brawls and verbal confrontations punctuated the latest in a series of far-right 'patriot movement' events in Portland, Oregon, on Friday, as around 100 attendees clashed verbally and occasionally physically with 'anti-fascist' protesters.

In such an atmosphere of tension and violence, Portland Republicans voted this week to invite heavily armed militia groups to provide security at public events.

The Portland Mercury reported the controversial move, after the text of a party resolution was leaked. In May, the Guardian reported that Multnomah County GOP chairman James Buchal was considering such a move as a result of perceived danger from anti-fascist protesters. Buchal then used a major rightwing rally in the city, on 4 June and in the tense aftermath of a racially motivated double murder on city transportation, as a recruiting platform."

-->Armed right wing militia groups to take part in rallies for the Republican Party. How close can we get to fascism before it it too late. The NYT wasn't too concerned; it didn't publish this story.


The Intercept:
"THE HOUSE COMMITTEE on Foreign Affairs unanimously passed a measure on Thursday that would give the Trump administration power to decide how to punish U.S. companies that engage in or promote boycotts of Israel — including through criminal penalties.

The committee passed an amendment by voice vote from Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif., that largely replaced the text of a bill called the Israel Anti-Boycott Act. When the original legislation was first introduced last year, it drew outrage from activists, and the American Civil Liberties Union warned that by threatening to impose steep criminal penalties on boycott activists engaged with international bodies’ boycotts, the bill was unconstitutional.

After the uproar, the initial bill, which was supported by the influential America Israel Public Affairs Committee, lost momentum. But Royce’s effort to move his version out of the Foreign Affairs Committee is part of a push to reinvigorate Capitol Hill’s efforts to use statutory means to clamp down on the growing movement to boycott, divest from, and sanction the Jewish state for human rights violations against the Palestinians."

-->How little the major media seems to care about free speech. The NYT didn't report this story.