Media hypocrisy is destroying America, but MEMES are the problem? Give me a break!

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Mainstream media are outraged over a meme video depicting President Donald Trump shooting his critics – but they absolutely loved the movie it was based on, and think nothing of actual violence committed against Trump supporters.

All of this has happened before, and all of this will happen again, as the media mob pursues rage clickbait. This time, the hand-wringing and pearl-clutching is over a meme – excuse me, “fake” and “doctored” – video shown during the American Priority Conference at Trump Doral in Florida this weekend.

Reactions to the video go way beyond what cartoonist Scott Adams has described as seeing “two movies on the same screen.” One liberal comedian – entirely seriously – zeroed in on Trump “killing powerful black people” to lament the “cancer that is Trumpism.”

Actress Kathy Griffin – who once thought it was a great idea to do a photoshoot with a fake severed head of Trump – now claimed she was the real victim, as the video shows her “being murdered” by the president.

“Waiting for Donald Trump to condemn the video of him committing mass murder that was shown at his resort to his supporters, and to apologize to the families of those targeted,” anti-gun crusader Shannon Watts tweeted unironically.

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One possible explanation is that none of the people getting worked up over the video have ever watched ‘Kingsman:The Secret Service,’ that the meme was based on. The 2015 “action spy comedy” revolves entirely around over-the-top cartoonish violence juxtaposed with English gentility – such as the protagonist of that specific scene going berserk inside a church, along with everyone else, due to the effects of an electronic weapon.

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Movie critics and audiences alike – 74 percent and 84 percent, respectively – loved the movie and had no problem with American churchgoers getting massacred in that scene, as journalist Lee Stranahan pointed out.

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More to the point, the same people shrieking now have not bothered to notice the video since it came out in July 2018. So why now? Was there nothing else at the conference they could object to, so some outrage had to be manufactured, and memes were it?

Before long, Twitter was suspending Carpe Donktum, the pro-Trump memesmith who did not even make the video, but defended its display as part of a “meme exhibit.”  

“The Kingsman video is CLEARLY satirical and the violence depicted is metaphoric. No reasonable person would believe that this video was a call to action, or an endorsement of violence towards the media,” he said in a statement on Monday.

Except that people who consider themselves special and above reproach or critique have stopped being reasonable long ago.

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One does not have to be a conservative pundit to point out the obvious hypocrisy. The New York Times sponsoring a theatrical production of Shakespeare’s ‘Julius Caesar’ depicting Trump getting assassinated; Griffin’s ISIS stunt; music videos depicting Trump getting murdered – all fine in the media playbook, because free speech, First Amendment, and so on. But when some anonymous “peasant” in “flyover country” dares meme a video turning the tables? Red alert!

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For all the media rhetoric about Trump “inciting violence” against journalists, actual political violence in the US has overwhelmingly consisted of Trump critics targeting his supporters – with the June 2017 shooting of Republicans training for the congressional baseball charity game being the deadliest example.

Throughout, the same media now shrieking about incitement have peddled conspiracy theories about Trump’s “treason” and “Russian collusion” and imminent threat to “our democracy” that have actually done more to sow discontent and division among Americans than anything they’ve blamed alleged “Russian trolls” for.

Not to mention that they were perfectly fine smearing and demonizing American citizens, living and working in the US, as “Russian agents” just because they worked at outlets like RT or Sputnik. Wasn’t that an attack on journalists, or is it different when they do it?

Honestly, I’ve had enough of this stone-throwing by inhabitants of glass houses – and I get a feeling a lot of my fellow Americans have as well. As Matt Taibbi observed just the other day, this country has been dragged into a state of perpetual coup, courtesy of the political establishment in Washington and their media enablers, out to get Bad Orange Man at any cost – even if it means destroying the country.

If you don’t understand memes, maybe journalism is not for you, and it’s time to find honest work.

Nebojsa Malic, senior writer

 

BOMBSHELL IN THE MAKING: DID ADAM SCHIFF PULL A JUSSIE SMOLLETT AND FABRICATE THE EXISTENCE OF THE WHISTLEBLOWER?

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When this blows up in his face, it’s going to take down the entire Democrat party for 2020 and beyond

Mike Adams | NaturalNews.com – OCTOBER 3, 2019

(Natural News – Oct. 2, 2019) Earlier today, President Trump declared that he believes Rep. Adam Schiff wrote the so-called “whistleblower” complaint (see video below).

But the official whistleblower complaint story is unraveling by the hour as new facts emerge, pointing to a far more shocking likelihood: That Adam Schiff may have fabricated the existence of the whistleblower himself, in effect projecting his own complaint onto a fictional persona that he is now going to question in a private, closed-door congressional session where he will essentially be questioning himself.

This scenario isn’t proven yet, but it’s looking more and more like Adam Schiff may have pulled a Jussie Smollett. Instead of tying a noose around his own neck and faking a hate crime, he may have fabricated an entire “whistleblower” persona and written the whistleblower complaint himself in a psychotic, desperate effort to try to destroy Trump before AG William Barr drops the mother of all bombshells about the Democrats’ involvement in a vast criminal conspiracy to try to overthrow the President of the United States of America.

Schiff knows that if Trump isn’t stopped, a long list of left-wing traitors will likely be prosecuted and jailed. That list may include Adam Schiff himself, who has been linked to Ukrainian arms dealers, and Joe Biden’s son who is now known to have received $3.4 million in “criminally obtained” laundered money, transferred to his business accounts as part of Joe Biden’s shakedown of international oligarchs and mafia organizations. Don’t forget, either, that Barack Obama laundered billions of dollars internationally in order to fund Iran’s nuclear weapons program, a clear act of criminal treason against the United States.

This entire “whistleblower” hoax has been masterfully orchestrated by a combination of deep state intelligence players, left-wing media hacks and Democrat legislators. They are all playing their roles as crisis actors, feigning outrage over a non-crime “crime,” even resorting to completely fictionalizing a whole new “transcript” of what they hope Trump said on a phone call with Ukraine’s President (which Adam Schiff read into the congressional record a few days ago to try to gaslight the entire nation about what Trump really said).

Democrat deep staters have reached the point where there’s nothing they won’t try to take down Trump, since they are fully aware that Trump is already in the process of rolling a large number of truth grenades into their deep state bunkers, all of which will detonate in short order with catastrophic consequences for the treasonous Dems.

IT’S NOT JUST SCHIFF: THE NYT AND WASHINGTON POST ROUTINELY FABRICATE FAKE “ANONYMOUS SOURCES” TO PUSH LIES ABOUT TRUMP

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As you’ll see confirmed in the coming days, it seems increasingly likely that Rep. Schiff is his own made-up source, which is consistent with the new rules of so-called “journalism” at the Washington Post and New York Times, where “anonymous sources” are fabricated out of thin air to substantiate any false allegations they wish to print.

Ironically, the New York Times has now reported that Schiff knew about the whistleblower complaint days before it was officially filed. That’s because, of course, he’s the one who wrote it!

To the shock and dismay of all informed observers, the Democrats are now fabricating everything, not just the news. They are falsifying transcripts, falsifying evidence and probably even falsifying entire personalities whom they can label “whistleblowers” while demanding no one ever learn their real identities. Adam Schiff has become to politics what Bernie Madoff was to investing: Nothing but a highly-positioned con artist whose reckless psychosis will send shrapnel tearing through the entire Democrat party once the delusion implodes.

Perhaps Rep. Schiff has a hand puppet in his bedroom that talks to him and tells him all the evil things Trump has done. We’re looking at extreme mental illness with this devious character… the kind of villainous evil that we see depicted in The Joker from Batman movies, or the original Psycho thriller where Norman Bates took orders from his long-dead mother who encouraged him to be a creepy stalker of hotel guests.

The only difference is that Norman Bates wasn’t a member of Congress, and he didn’t try to gaslight an entire nation into believing his decaying dead mother was really a whistleblower who could take down a president.

Speaking of creepy movies, this is way beyond Sixth Sense, as Adam Schiff not only sees dead people; they seem to actually talk to him and provide him with testimony to take down Trump because Orange Man Bad. Or better yet, perhaps Adam Schiff gets witnesses to talk to him through Ouija boards or bizarre, demonic incantations involving pentagrams and the entrails of murdered human babies which are readily available for sale at your local Planned Parenthood abortion clinic as long as you claim the organs are for “medical research.”

This entire fiasco is also a near carbon copy of the playbook used via Christine Blasey Ford to try to fling false accusations against Brett Kavanaugh, by the way. Of course, Ford was a real person (with a fake story), while this Ukraine “whistleblower” increasingly appears to be a complete fabrication and not a real person at all. With Ford, they were faking memories. With Schiff, they’re faking entire sources.

No doubt Shift Schiff is desperately running around the halls of Washington D.C. right now trying to recruit someone who will agree to be named as a whistleblower, so I don’t doubt that Schiff can eventually produce a name and perhaps even a body (whether it’s alive or dead is yet to be seen), but it will become obvious within hours that this whistleblower is nothing but a proxy, having no direct knowledge whatsoever of the events claimed in the official complaint, which was clearly written by Schiff himself.

The bottom line? Rep. Adam Schiff appears to be engaged in one of the most malicious and psychotic acts of insane criminality that has ever been carried out by an active member of the U.S. Congress, and when this blows up in his face, it’s going to take down the entire Democrat party for 2020 and beyond.

The Schiff is going to hit the fan, in other words.

In a hilarious kind of way, Adam Schiff is truly God’ gift to Trump’s re-election efforts in 2020, and as much as Mad Maxine is now calling for President Trump to be arrested and tortured in solitary confinement, I wouldn’t be surprised at all of it’s actually Adam Schiff who ends up in prison… perhaps with a few cell mates named Brennan and McCabe who also end up thinking dead people are talking to them, too. Could all those voices in their heads actually be the ghosts of Arkancide?

Stay tuned. More details coming soon on this story as we watch Schiff squirm.

 

NYT publisher declares Trump a threat to journalism; forgets to mention Obama’s war on whistleblowers and Julian Assange

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By Danielle Ryan

The Trump administration is admonished as a threat to journalism worldwide in a new oped penned by New York Times publisher AG Sulzberger. It’s just a pity that in the 3,200-word screed, he found no time to mention Julian Assange.

Perhaps a worse sin than his purposeful omission of Assange’s pertinent case, though, is Sulzberger’s utterly disingenuous claim that before Donald Trump came along, the US government was “the world’s greatest champion of the free press.”

Readers who make it to the end of the piece would be none the wiser as to the fact that Trump’s predecessor, Barack Obama, waged a war on whistleblowers, prosecuting more of them than all previous US administrations combined and paving the way for Trump’s further attacks.

Assange’s name may be appearing less frequently in the news these days, but Sulzberger will be well aware that the Australian whistleblower and WikiLeaks co-founder is still a prisoner at London’s top security Belmarsh Prison, despite the fact that his sentence for skipping bail is up.

Though he was due for release on September 22, a court ruled that Assange must stay in prison until his extradition hearing next year, citing his “history of absconding.” In other words, the whistleblower who exposed US war crimes managed to evade persecution by US authorities once before — and the British government is determined not to let that happen again.

Sulzberger knows all this but consciously chose to ignore it in favor of anecdotes about the heroism of the Times’ own reporters around the world and the Trump administration’s reluctance to stand up for journalists, American and otherwise. Some of the stories he tells are indeed worrying and deserve to be told — but let’s be clear: No defense of the free press is sincere and complete without a strong and unambiguous defense of Julian Assange.

Nonetheless, the piece was praised by mainstream journalists on Twitter. “A call to arms,” said NYT columnist Jim Rutenberg. “The best analysis” of the damage Trump has done to the free press, said Brazilian journalist Rosental Alves. “A powerful defense,” of journalism, declared Gannett CNY editor Jeffrey Platsky.

But Sulzberger’s things-were-great-and-then-Trump-happened tone is typical of the overly simplified manner in which US media elites have been framing the Trump presidency from the outset. From targeting whistleblowers, to deporting migrants, to turning a blind eye to Saudi atrocities in Yemen — if Obama did it, it was fine, admirable and initiated without malice. If Trump does it, it’s unacceptable, reprehensible and rooted in evil — even if there is little meaningful difference in outcomes.

Without a hint of Assange-related irony, Sulzberger warns that governments around the world are targeting journalists who have been “exposing uncomfortable truths and holding power to account.” The current administration has “retreated from our country’s historical role as a defender of the free press,” he continues, throwing in a quote from the late Senator John McCain — chief senate warmonger and friend to Ukrainian neo-Nazis and Syrian terrorists, who the intrepid muckrakers over at the Washington Post once lauded for his ability to “make journalists love him.” 

Truly explosive stuff; someone find these risk-takers a free cell at Belmarsh immediately.

Back at home, Trump’s attacks on the media have served to “undermine” the public’s faith in journalists, Sulzberger argues, noting that the president has tweeted about“fake news” 600 times since taking office. There is no denying that Trump has undermined the public’s already waning faith in the free press by labelling all reporting which displeases him as “fake.”

Yet, what Sulzberger fails to acknowledge is how the media has been so helpful to him in this regard. Times editor Dean Baquet admitted recently that three years of Russiagate coverage which essentially amounted to nothing had left the paper of record “flat-footed.” Trump, of course, took full advantage of the genuinely abysmal coverage of his presidency.

Concluding, Sulzberger assures the reader that he has raised his concerns with Trump personally, to no avail, and warns that threatening to prosecute journalists for doing their jobs gives repressive leaders around the world “implicit license” to do the same. Someone should remind him that if Trump bears responsibility here, he rightfully shares it with Obama.

As for those repressive leaders, they need look no further than Assange — and when they examine his case, they’ll be emboldened further, knowing that even his fellow journalists failed to stand up and loudly advocate for him.

Facebook ‘News’: A bold step toward total control of reality?

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By Helen Buyniski

Facebook‘s plan to hook ad-cash-deprived mainstream outlets on licensing payouts seems to be an attempt to hijack narrative control en route to total domination of the infosphere – the ultimate safe space, Zuckerberg-style.

More than two thirds of American adults get their news from social media at the same time that more than half expectthat news to be “largely inaccurate.” Perhaps sensing a business opportunity, Facebook has moved in to manage that news consumption, reportedly offering mainstream outlets millions of dollars per year to license their content in order to present it to users authoritatively, as “Facebook News” – having long since ceased trusting users to share news among themselves.

But trusting Facebook to deliver the news is like trusting a cheetah to babysit your gazelles – all that’s left at the end is likely to be a pile of bones. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg warned legacy media last year that if they did not work with his plan to “revitalize journalism,” they would be left dying “like in a hospice.”

An offer they can’t refuse? Facebook offers mainstream news millions in licensing fees

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Dangling a few million in front of news outlets after depriving them of the advertising cash on which they once subsisted is merely the final step in the process of consolidation and control that began when Facebook removed actual news from its newsfeed in an effort to manage the narrative in the run-up to the 2016 election. A move ostensibly designed to “favor friends and family over publishers,” it instead plunged mainstream and especially alternative media into financial oblivion, setting them scrambling to recoup lost traffic as their place in subscribers’ feeds was taken by cat videos and family snapshots.

Alternative media were further marginalized after Zuckerberg inked a deal with the Atlantic Council – NATO‘s narrative-managers whose board is populated by some of the most notorious warmongers of recent history – who arrived to set the platform straight after it failed to deliver the 2016 election to Hillary Clinton. The group would ensure Facebook played a “positive role” in democracy in the future, a press release promised. Six months later, hundreds of popular political pages had been purged for getting in the way of the Atlantic Council’s version of “democracy.” Several more purges followed, many pages getting the axe for nothing more than espousing views “favorable to Iran’s national interests” or posting content with “anti-Saudi, anti-Israeli, and pro-Palestinian themes.”

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Zuckerberg has never hidden his desire to see Facebook become an internet driver’s license, and he has no doubt watched gleefully as French President Emmanuel Macron‘s government weighs requiring citizens to turn over actual identity documents in order to sign up to use Facebook. The platform was the first to adopt an intelligence-agency-friendly “real name policy,” irritating political activists, performers, and others who prefer not to have their social media activity follow them around in real life.

Privacy advocates are currently up in arms over the FBI’s recently-revealed plans to monitor social media platforms in real time. Combined with the recently leaked FBI decision to label all “conspiracy theorists” as potentially-dangerous domestic extremists, this looks an awful lot like a manufactured rationale to spy on the majority of the US population. Yet Facebook has been feeding users’ data to the government for over a decade. It joined the NSA’s PRISM program in 2009, providing the agency with its own convenient backdoor for slurping up the data others have had to hack themselves. Not that that’s been very hard – Facebook admitted last year that data on “most” of its users has been compromised at some point by “malicious actors.”

Facebook’s decision to hire one of the co-authors of the notorious PATRIOT Act as General Counsel earlier this year was touted as a move that would help the company “fulfill its mission.” Which would be what, exactly?

Despite its egregious privacy record, the areas of reality outside Zuckerberg’s control are dwindling rapidly. With the rollout of Facebook’s Libra coin, commerce, too, is falling under the shadow of this menacingly bland figure.

When Zuckerberg was photographed traveling through Middle America several years ago, many pointed out it looked like he was running for president. His announcement around the same time that he had found religion – a vague, made-for-TV, feel-good faith guaranteed not to antagonize anyone – also had the feel of a campaign move. If Facebook – and Zuckerberg’s – history is any guide, he has bigger things in mind for Facebook News than a new tab on the user interface. Every campaign needs a press office, after all…

CNN WINS ‘CRONKITE AWARD’ FOR PARKLAND TOWN HALL WHICH SAW NRA REP BERATED, THREATENED WITH VIOLENCE

CNN Wins 'Cronkite Award' For Parkland Town Hall Which Saw NRA Rep Berated, Threatened With Violence

‘Is this a joke? Seriously,’ says Dana Loesch

 | Infowars.com – MARCH 19, 2019

CNN was bestowed the Cronkite Award for its “Parkland Town Hall” which resulted in NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch being escorted off the premises after attendees berated and tried to assault her.

The University of Southern California held the 10th biennial Walter Cronkite Awards for Excellence in Television Political Journalism on Wednesday, honoring CNN for its Parkland Town Hall last year for “helping advance the national conversation on gun control and violence.”

Loesch attended the event to defend the Second Amendment following the left’s calls for gun control over the deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida, but the audience ended up hurling insults and threats of violence against her.

“Is this a joke? Seriously,” she tweeted Tuesday, before releasing several video clips of the event while it wasn’t televised.

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“Here is some footage where people were yelling to burn me at CNN’s award-winning townhall where they ‘advanced the conversation on gun control,’” she said.

“Shame on you! Shame on you! Shame on you! Shame on you!” the audience chanted as Loesch was escorted from the event.

Some conversation.

Here’s more of the “conversation.”

“This is what happened when the cameras turned off at @CNNPR ’s award-winning townhall. They’re proud of it,” Loesch continued.

In the mainstream media bizarro world, CNN is given awards for “advancing the conversation on gun control and violence” for hosting an event that demonizes the Second Amendment and threatens violence against detractors.

Even CNN CEO Jeff Zucker was given a First Amendment award after lobbying to censor his competition online.

MSM IS GARBAGE – Lara Logan Breaks Ranks with Media: Almost All Corporate News Far-Left, Dumbed Down, Dishonest… …‘Unless You Seek out Breitbart,’ You Won’t See the ‘Other Side’

By Robert Kraychik

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Lara Logan, foreign correspondent for CBS’s 60 Minutes, said Breitbart News offers “the other side” of news media relative to what she described as a mostly left-wing and partisan Democrat news landscape in the U.S. and abroad.

She offered her remarks in an interview published last Friday with the Mike Drop podcast, hosted by retired Navy SEAL Mike Ritland.

Ritland characterized U.S. news media as “absurdly left-leaning” and supportive of Democrats, further describing the status quo of American news media’s left-wing and partisan Democrat biases as a “huge fucking problem” and “disaster for this country.

Logan concurred, “I agree with that. That’s true.” She described U.S. and international news media as “mostly liberal,” adding, “most” journalists are left.

“The media everywhere is mostly liberal, not just the U.S.,” assessed Logan.

Logan grouped Breitbart News and Fox News as dissident outlets relative to the “mostly liberal” news media landscape. She said:

Visually, anyone who’s ever been to Israel and been to the Wailing Wall has seen that the women have this tiny little spot in front of the wall to pray, and the rest of the wall is for the men. To me, that’s a great representation of the American media, is that in this tiny little corner where the women pray you’ve got Breitbart and Fox News and a few others, and from there on, you have CBS, ABC, NBC, Huffington Post, Politico, whatever, right? All of them. And that’s a problem for me, because even if it was reversed, if it was vastly mostly on the right, that would also be a problem for me.

My experience has been that the more opinions you have, the more ways that you look at everything in life — everything in life is complicated, everything is gray, right? Nothing is black and white.

News media homogeneity cripples many people’s desire for getting to the truth about political goings on, determined Logan:

 

How do you know you’re being lied to? How do you know you’re being manipulated? How do you know there’s something not right with the coverage? When they simplify it all [and] there’s no grey. It’s all one way. Well, life isn’t like that. If it doesn’t match real life, it’s probably not. Something’s wrong. For example, all the coverage on Trump all the time is negative. … That’s a distortion of the way things go in real life.

Logan warned:

One ideological perspective on everything never leads to an open free diverse tolerant society. The more opinions and views … of everything that you have, the better off we all are. So creating one ideological position on everything throughout your universities, throughout academia, in school and college, in media, and everywhere else, that’s what concerns me. I don’t have to agree with everybody.

Logan added, “Although the media has historically always been left-leaning, we’ve abandoned our pretense — or at least the effort — to be objective, today. … We’ve become political activists, and some could argue propagandists, and there’s some merit to that.”

Logan cast Breitbart News as a useful barometer of “the other side” of news media:

This is the problem that I have. There’s one Fox, and there’s many, many, many more organizations on the left. … The problem is the weight of all these organizations on one side of the political spectrum. When you turn on your computer, or you walk past the TV, or you see a newspaper headline in the grocery store If they’re all saying the same thing, the weight of that convinces you that it’s true. You don’t question it, because everyone is saying it. Unless you seek out Breitbart on your computer, you’re probably not even going to know what the other side is saying.

Most news media outlets ignore the origins  of ostensibly grassroots political activism, stated Logan. She pondered the geneses of such campaigns, speculating on technology firms’ roles in amplifying such campaigns:

We don’t even question if what we see on social media is real or not. We don’t even question if a grassroots movement is really grassroots. You know, there’s a way to start a grassroots movement. You write an algorithm, and you create all this outrage, and you’re basically throwing out all the sparks that light the fire, so then it becomes a grassroots movement because it takes nothing to set that in motion. But did it really begin as one? And if it didn’t begin that way, but was manipulated and paid for by someone and serves someone’s political purpose, is it really what we believe it is?

People were manipulated into doing that. … Who’s behind it? Who’s doing it, and why are they doing it? And what else are they doing? Those things are profoundly significant, and we’re not even trying to find out who it is. That really bothers me.

 

Logan dismissed news media claims allegedly rooted in singular anonymous government sources as unreliable. “That’s not journalism, it’s horseshit,” she said.

“Responsibility for fake news begins with us,” said Logan, referring to journalists and reporters.

Logan recalled for Media Matters for America (MMFA) targeted her following a 60 Minutes report she filed related to the September 11, 2012 Islamic terrorist attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya. “I made one comment about Benghazi,” remarked Logan, ” [then] I was targeted by Media Matters for America, which was an organization established by David Brock, who has dedicated himself to the Clintons. It was their known propaganda organization.”

In February of 2011, Logan was sexually assaulted — and nearly murdered — by numerous men in Cairo, Egypt, while reporting on the ousting of then-Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. She shared some details of the attack’s nature, including

“Piece by piece, they tore all my clothing off, and just tore my body almost to pieces, and tore my insides apart,” recounted Logan. “I saw people taking pictures. … I remember fighting, being raped, and being able to sometimes push people away, and then I remember just realizing that there were too many of them — and it was over and over and over again — and that there was always someone else when you could fight one person.”

Towards the end of the interview, Logan quipped, “This interview is professional suicide for me.”

Microsoft Partners With Neocon-Backed ‘Fact Checker’ Seeking To ‘Wage War On Independent Media’

by Chris Menahan

Microsoft has partnered with a shoddy Neocon-backed “fact checker” called NewsGuard which rates websites’ “credibility” in-browser and NewsGuard’s CEO says their goal is to have their software on all smartphones and computers by default. 

From MintPressNews:

How a NeoCon-Backed “Fact Checker” Plans to Wage War on Independent Media

As Newsguard’s project advances, it will soon become almost impossible to avoid this neocon-approved news site’s ranking systems on any technological device sold in the United States.
by Whitney Webb
January 09th, 2019

Soon after the social media “purge” of independent media sites and pages this past October, a top neoconservative insider — Jamie Fly — was caught stating that the mass deletion of anti-establishment and anti-war pages on Facebook and Twitter was “just the beginning” of a concerted effort by the U.S. government and powerful corporations to silence online dissent within the United States and beyond.

While a few, relatively uneventful months in the online news sphere have come and gone since Fly made this ominous warning, it appears that the neoconservatives and other standard bearers of the military-industrial complex and the U.S. oligarchy are now poised to let loose their latest digital offensive against independent media outlets that seek to expose wrongdoing in both the private and public sectors.

As MintPress News Editor-in-Chief Mnar Muhawesh recently wrote, MintPress was informed that it was under review by an organization called Newsguard Technologies, which described itself to MintPress as simply a “news rating agency” and asked Muhawesh to comment on a series of allegations, several of which were blatantly untrue. However, further examination of this organization reveals that it is funded by and deeply connected to the U.S. government, neo-conservatives, and powerful monied interests, all of whom have been working overtime since the 2016 election to silence dissent to American forever-wars and corporate-led oligarchy.

More troubling still, Newsguard — by virtue of its deep connections to government and Silicon Valley — is lobbying to have its rankings of news sites installed by default on computers in U.S. public libraries, schools, and universities as well as on all smartphones and computers sold in the United States.

In other words, as Newsguard’s project advances, it will soon become almost impossible to avoid this neocon-approved news site’s ranking systems on any technological device sold in the United States. Worse still, if its efforts to quash dissenting voices in the U.S. are successful, Newsguard promises that its next move will be to take its system global.

Red light, green light . . .

Newsguard has received considerable attention in the mainstream media of late, having been the subject of a slew of articles in the Washington Post, the Hill, the Boston Globe, Politico, Bloomberg, Wired, and many others just over the past few months. Those articles portray Newsguard as using “old-school journalism” to fight “fake news” through its reliance on nine criteria allegedly intended to separate the wheat from the chaff when it comes to online news.

Newsguard separates sites it deems worthy and sites it considers unreliable by using a color-coded rating — green, yellow, or red — and more detailed “nutrition labels” regarding a site’s credibility or lack thereof. Rankings are created by Newsguard’s team of “trained analysts.” The color-coding system may remind some readers of the color-coded terror threat-level warning system that was created after 9/11, making it worth noting that Tom Ridge, the former secretary of Homeland Security who oversaw the implementation of that system under George W. Bush, is on Newsguard’s advisory board.

As Newsguard releases a new rating of a site, that rating automatically spreads to all computers that have installed its news ranking browser plug-in. That plug-in is currently available for free for the most commonly used internet browsers. NewsGuard directly markets the browser plug-in to libraries, schools and internet users in general.

According to its website, Newsguard has rated more than 2,000 news and information sites. However, it plans to take its ranking efforts much farther by eventually reviewing “the 7,500 most-read news and information websites in the U.S.—about 98 percent of news and information people read and share online” in the United States in English.

[…]

According to local media, Newsguard “now works with library systems representing public libraries across the country, and is also partnering with middle schools, high schools, universities, and educational organizations to support their news literacy efforts,” suggesting that these Newsguard services targeting libraries and schools are soon to become a compulsory component of the American library and education system, despite Newsguard’s glaring conflicts of interest with massive multinational corporations and powerful government power-brokers.

Notably, Newsguard has a powerful partner that has allowed it to start finding its way into public library and school computers throughout the country. As part of its new “Defending Democracy” initiative, Microsoft announced last August that it would be partnering with Newsguard to actively market the company’s ranking app and other services to libraries and schools throughout the country. Microsoft’s press release regarding the partnership states that Newsguard “will empower voters by providing them with high-quality information about the integrity and transparency of online news sites.”

Since then, Microsoft has now added the Newsguard app as a built-in feature of Microsoft Edge, its browser for iOS and Android mobile devices, and is unlikely to stop there. Indeed, as a recent report in favor of Microsoft’s partnership with Newsguard noted, “we could hope that this new partnership will allow Microsoft to add NewsGuard to Edge on Windows 10 [operating system for computers] as well.”

Newsguard, for its part, seems confident that its app will soon be added by default to all mobile devices. On its website, the organization notes that “NewsGuard will be available on mobile devices when the digital platforms such as social media sites and search engines or mobile operating systems add our ratings and Nutrition Labels directly.” This shows that Newsguard isn’t expecting its rating systems to be offered as a downloadable application for mobile devices but something that social media sites like Facebook, search engines like Google, and mobile device operating systems that are dominated by Apple and Google will “directly” integrate into nearly every smartphone and tablet sold in the United States.

A Boston Globe article on Newsguard from this past October makes this plan even more clear. The Globe wrote at the time:
Microsoft has already agreed to make NewsGuard a built-in feature in future products, and [Newsguard co-CEO] Brill said he’s in talks with other online titans. The goal is to have NewsGuard running by default on our computers and phones whenever we scan the Web for news.”
This eventuality is made all the more likely given the fact that, in addition to Microsoft, Newsguard is also closely connected to Google, as Google has been a partner of the Publicis Groupe since 2014, when the two massive companies joined Condé Nast to create a new marketing service called La Maison that is “focused on producing engaging content for marketers in the luxury space.” Given Google’s power in the digital sphere as the dominant search engine, the creator of the Android mobile operating system, and the owner of YouTube, its partnership with Publicis means that Newsguard’s rating system will soon see itself being promoted by yet another of Silicon Valley’s most powerful companies.

Furthermore, there is an effort underway to integrate Newsguard into social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. Indeed, as Newsguard was launched, co-CEO Brill stated that he planned to sell the company’s ratings of news sites to Facebook and Twitter. Last March, Brill told CNN that “We’re asking them [Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft and Google] to pay a fraction of what they pay their P.R. people and their lobbyists to talk about the problem.”

[…]

Notably, Newsguard has a powerful partner that has allowed it to start finding its way into public library and school computers throughout the country. As part of its new “Defending Democracy” initiative, Microsoft announced last August that it would be partnering with Newsguard to actively market the company’s ranking app and other services to libraries and schools throughout the country. Microsoft’s press release regarding the partnership states that Newsguard “will empower voters by providing them with high-quality information about the integrity and transparency of online news sites.”

Since then, Microsoft has now added the Newsguard app as a built-in feature of Microsoft Edge, its browser for iOS and Android mobile devices, and is unlikely to stop there. Indeed, as a recent report in favor of Microsoft’s partnership with Newsguard noted, “we could hope that this new partnership will allow Microsoft to add NewsGuard to Edge on Windows 10 [operating system for computers] as well.”

Newsguard, for its part, seems confident that its app will soon be added by default to all mobile devices. On its website, the organization notes that “NewsGuard will be available on mobile devices when the digital platforms such as social media sites and search engines or mobile operating systems add our ratings and Nutrition Labels directly.” This shows that Newsguard isn’t expecting its rating systems to be offered as a downloadable application for mobile devices but something that social media sites like Facebook, search engines like Google, and mobile device operating systems that are dominated by Apple and Google will “directly” integrate into nearly every smartphone and tablet sold in the United States.

A Boston Globe article on Newsguard from this past October makes this plan even more clear. The Globe wrote at the time:
Microsoft has already agreed to make NewsGuard a built-in feature in future products, and [Newsguard co-CEO] Brill said he’s in talks with other online titans. The goal is to have NewsGuard running by default on our computers and phones whenever we scan the Web for news.”
This eventuality is made all the more likely given the fact that, in addition to Microsoft, Newsguard is also closely connected to Google, as Google has been a partner of the Publicis Groupe since 2014, when the two massive companies joined Conde Nast to create a new marketing service called La Maison that is “focused on producing engaging content for marketers in the luxury space.” Given Google’s power in the digital sphere as the dominant search engine, the creator of the Android mobile operating system, and the owner of YouTube, its partnership with Publicis means that Newsguard’s rating system will soon see itself being promoted by yet another of Silicon Valley’s most powerful companies.

Furthermore, there is an effort underway to integrate Newsguard into social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. Indeed, as Newsguard was launched, co-CEO Brill stated that he planned to sell the company’s ratings of news sites to Facebook and Twitter. Last March, Brill told CNN that “We’re asking them [Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft and Google] to pay a fraction of what they pay their P.R. people and their lobbyists to talk about the problem.”

[…]

Financial censorship

Another Newsguard service shows that this organization is also seeking to harm independent media financially by targeting online revenue. Through a service called “Brandguard,” which it describes as a “brand safety tool aimed at helping advertisers keep their brands off of unreliable news and information sites while giving them the assurance they need to support thousands of Green-rated [i.e., Newsguard-approved] news and information sites, big and small.”

At the time the service was announced last November, Newsguard co-CEO Brill stated that the company was “in discussions with the ad tech firms, leading agencies, and major advertisers” eager to adopt a blacklist of news sites deemed “unreliable” by Newsguard. This is unsurprising given the leading role of the Publicis Groupe, one of the world’s largest advertising and PR firms, has in funding Newsguard. As a consequence, it seems likely that many, if not all, of Publicis’ client companies will choose to adopt this blacklist to help crush many of the news sites that are unafraid to hold them accountable.

It is also important to note here that Google’s connection to Publicis and thus Newsguard could spell trouble for independent news pages that rely on Google Adsense for some or all of their ad-based revenue. Google Adsense has long been targeting sites like MintPress by demonetizing articles for information or photographs it deemed controversial, including demonetizing one article for including a photo showing U.S. soldiers involved in torturing Iraqi detainees at the infamous Abu Ghraib prison.

Since then, Google — a U.S. military contractor — has repeatedly tried to shutter ad access to MintPress articles that involve reporting that is critical of U.S. empire and military expansion. One article that has been repeatedly flagged by Google details how many African-Americans have questioned whether the Women’s March has aided or harmed the advancement of African-Americans in the United States. Google has repeatedly claimed that the article, which was written by African-American author and former Washington Post bureau chief Jon Jeter, contains “dangerous content.”

Given Google’s already established practice of targeting factual reporting it deemed controversial through Adsense, Brandguard will likely offer the tech giant just the excuse it needs to cut off sites like MintPress, and other pages equally critical of empire, altogether.
Read their full report.

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This has been a dream of the establishment for over a decade.

One of these NewsGuard “journalists” contacted yours truly with a review of Information Liberation that was so shoddy I didn’t even bother to respond as almost everything he said was wrong and his reading comprehension was terrible.

I figured it’s a waste of time to respond as I would be doing the reporter’s job for him by correcting him and I would only be improving his shoddy work.

It’s blatantly obvious their goal is not to create an honest assessment of any of our websites but instead to compile whatever slander they can throw together to suit their pre-ordained narrative.

JihadWatch’s Robert Spencer has also written an excellent article exposing NewsGuard titled, “Steven Brill’s NewsGuard and the ‘fact-checking’ scam.”

Just look at the guys behind this:

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Would you trust those men to walk your dog?

The reason no one ever bothered implementing any scheme like this is because it’s so obviously a fraud and an affront to people’s intelligence that it is more likely to have the opposite effect — negative rated sites are going to be viewed as more credible as evidenced by the fact they’re being slandered by these establishment hacks.

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