Weekly Journal for the week of January 2 | AspenTimes.com

Weekly Journal for the week of January 2

Weekly Journal for the week of January 2

This week I am again strongly reminded that we simply cannot trust or believe our leaders, or the media.

I have been reading a brilliant book called “War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning” by an LA Times journalist / historian / philosopher named Chris Hedges.

I so highly recommend that you read it.

Chris covers the issue of war from so many directions, showing how the old saying that “truth is the first casualty of war” is more true than we can imagine: how governments lionize their own issues and cause while demonizing and dehumanizing the enemy.

He draws on a theological background as well as on the ground experience as a war correspondent in many wars including Gulf War 1 and Bosnia, and has produced a book that is historical, profound, ethical and truly a must-read.

It is of course also very timely with our current War Of Terror on Iraq, and will remove the covers from your eyes about how you view, and hear, what is “happening”.

He further clearly shows the complicity of the media in all of this and how reporting of the truth goes out the window.

Today I see even more of how incompetent and unprofessional the media is in its reporting of the tsunami in South EAST Asia. I emphasize the EAST because all channels have been reporting that it was in South Asia, which it clearly was not. As the day has progressed the reporting has gradually changed to refer to the area as simply “Asia” which is also incorrect.

A small point, (one of many from the day’s news) but one that typifies the incredible ignorance of so-called professional journalists who clearly have to go to a map to find their local store.

Beyond that the propaganda machine churns out, via Colon Power, that America “as the leader of the world will lead in the efforts to help with this catastrophe” and he pledges $16 million in aid.

Meanwhile, little Australia, with 7% of America’s population, pledged $8 million in aid today…. 50% of “The Leader’s” gift. America did not hear too much about that of course.

On this same day the imposed dictator Democracy is falling apart as a Sunni political party withdraws from the election saying it will be unsafe for voters, again highlighting that life in Iraq is hell on wheels, with the average citizen risking life and limb every time they walk out of their door.

Will we ever learn to respect others’ choices and paths in life and let them get on with their own journey, or are we forever going to sit in judgment of others and force our control on them, be they in other countries or people in our own “democracy” who wish to make alternate choices that are condemned by the powers that be?

It seems to me that we would be better using our time and energy introducing democracy to America.

PS. the day after the tsunami a UN Official called the US offer of $15 million “stingy”. The Government promptly said that was an “initial” offering and added another $20 million, bringing the total to $35M.

The Media Propaganda machine went into overdrive to “prove” that America was not being stingy, despite the fact that the government sent $962 million to Florida last year for hurricane mitigation and recovery.

Reporters said that Powell had said it was an initial $16M with more to come. No, he did not. He said – and I listened to his whole speech, that the US was giving an initial $4M and would follow it up with more to a total of $16M.

The media arm of the government – i.e. the TV news channels – “proved” that America was leading the world in size of contributions and cited Japan, which had “only” given $30M.

Again, what is ignored is population. Japan’s per capita contribution is 3 times higher than the US. Australia’s per capita contribution is still 4 times bigger.

And so it goes… America HAS TO BE the biggest and the best, even if we have to murder the numbers to prove it!

© 2005 Tomas Gregory

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