Oborne's Resignation a Reminder - If Corporations Control the Message, They Control You

Peter Oborne's integrity is an example for journalists everywhere

Yesterday longtime journalist, Peter Oborne resigned from The Daily Telegraph, he went out with a bang not a whimper. His letter, published in full here [but removed from the Telegraph], detailed some of the reasons he finally quit, including, “If advertising priorities are allowed to determine editorial judgments, how can readers continue to feel this trust? The Telegraph’s recent coverage of HSBC amounts to a form of fraud on its readers. It has been placing what it perceives to be the interests of a major international bank above its duty to bring the news to Telegraph readers.”- Peter Oborne

i ran into the article ‘Democracy itself in peril' this morning at RT [surprise]. RT saying Oborn's letter "documents years of editorial decisions marred by the paper’s advertising contracts with the bank, including the decision not to follow the recent HSBC tax-avoidance scandal as closely as other media outlets, and even removing some articles from the site completely."

Good on Peter for shining a light on the reality that 'Freedom of the Press' equalsthe freedom to print what you're told. This is, and has been, the case since about two days after Gutenberg invented the printing press. First out came the Bible, second came Don Quixote, third came 'direction' from the kings and bishops.

Five years ago an early Mud Report said: "We are all told that totalitarian regimes use the control of information as one of their key tools, we don't often see as clearly our governments do the same." And went on to explain: "Back in my youth we believed that our 'free press' protected us, then, as the lies surrounding the Vietnam war surfaced and the complicity of the press in supporting those lies became obvious that pipe-dream of protection from propaganda evaporated."

The Vietnam War was a time of crisis and enlightenment for many. Looking back now i see that the names and perspectives of every story are flip-flopped to suit whatever regime is in control. Nowadays money rules and the truth drools [except maybe in Bhutan].

Oborne's letter concludes:
"This brings me to a second and even more important point that bears not just on the fate of one newspaper but on public life as a whole. A free press is essential to a healthy democracy. There is a purpose to journalism, and it is not just to entertain. It is not to pander to political power, big corporations and rich men. Newspapers have what amounts in the end to a constitutional duty to tell their readers the truth. There are great issues here. They go to the heart of our democracy, and can no longer be ignored."

Of course, RT also has an editorial perspective. IMO the only way a person can see the message control, the propaganda, is by looking at the issue from different the different perspectives. Even this is getting harder-er by the day almost. Take for instance the ongoing spin battle about Venezuela. Remember when Hugo Chavez was being demonized and held up as a dictator by Venezuela's 'free press'? His crime when he came to power and remained there on the back of numerous democratic elections was his refusal to allow Venezuela’s wealth to continue to be shipped out of the country, as it had been for decades, by a small group of Western-supported oligarchs. Regardless of how many complimentary pieces were written in the non-Empire ass-kissing media, the only ones that surfaced in the corporate mainstream were the pro-elite anti-Chavez ones. Chavez is dead, Maduro is president now but the story is still the same.

The corporate agenda has become the corporate media's agenda because a well informed, independent people exercising their free will are often difficult to control with simple fear tactics and they often resist in unpredictable ways. Worse yet, independent minded, free people seldom stalk the malls in zombie like pursuit of needless crap.