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New York Times: Distorting and Suppressing Truth for Power

by Stephen Lendman Thursday, Oct. 06, 2011 at 5:02 AM
lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net

media

The New York Times: Distorting and Suppressing Truth for Power - by Stephen Lendman

Imagine winning 106 Pulizer Prizes awarded for excellence in journalism, more than any other broadsheet, for delivering managed, not real news, information and opinion.

Imagine doing it since 1851. Imagine being called the "newspaper of record," producing "All the News That's Fit to Print."

Imagine an establishment publication representing wealth and power, backing corporate interests, cheerleading imperial wars, ducking uncomfortable issues too sensitive to report, and functioning as an unofficial ministry of information and propaganda.

Imagine relying on it for real information and analysis at a time it's vanishing except online.

At first, its Occupy Wall Street Coverage was scant, then mostly dismissive and offensive.

A previous article discussed Ginia Bellafante's September 23 article headlined,  "Gunning for Wall Street, With Faulty Aim," mocking real grievances.

On September 26, Times writer Joseph Goldstein headlined, "Wall Street Demonstrations Test Police Trained for Bigger Threats," saying:

"When members of the loose protest movement known as Occupy Wall Street began a march from the financial district to Union Square on Saturday, the participants seemed relatively harmless, even as they were breaking the law by marching in the street without a permit."

Fact check

The Constitution's First Amendment protects free expression, the press, the "right of the people to peacefully assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

Occupy Wall Street protesters lawfully expressed their First Amendment rights without which all others are at risk. They don't let Times writers like Goldstein play fast and loose with the truth, but he and others do it daily in Times articles, op-eds and opinions.

For New York cops, "the protesters represented something else: a visible example of lawlessness akin to that which had resulted in destruction and violence at anticapitalist demonstrations, like" past ones against the IMF, World Bank, WTO, G-20 meetings, and Republican and Democrat conventions.

Fact check

Since Seattle in 1999, all were peaceful. Police, however, violently disrupted them. It's what cops do, deployed to subvert, not protect democracy.

Regularly, they cordon off activists in so-called "free speech zones," contain them behind barriers, beat up on people, arrest hundreds, and use thuggish provocateurs to smash windows, set cars ablaze, and commit other unruly acts - unjustly blamed on protesters.

Moreover, surveillance cameras monitor everything. Helicopters at times patrol overhead. Military forces are positioned nearby out of sight. Snipers man rooftops, and thousands of police, mounted patrols and private security guards use tear gas, pepper spray, rubber bullets, batons, and other tactics to intimidate peaceful protesters.

Welcome to America! In disturbing ways, it resembles despotic regimes elsewhere.

"The Police Department's concerns came up against a perhaps 'milder reality' on Saturday, when their efforts to maintain crowd control suddenly escalated: protesters were corralled by police officers who put up orange mesh netting; the police forcibly arrested some participants; and a deputy inspector used pepper spray on four women who were on the sidewalk, behind the orange netting."

Fact check

Police confronted peaceful protesters violently. They slammed them to the ground, pepper-sprayed them repressively, brutally tackled others, and beat some for expressing their First Amendment rights.

Goldstein implied their lawful presence "create(d) a vexing problem for the Police Department." They, in fact, acted brutally outside the law, blaming protesters for violence they incited.

On October 1 Times writers Al Baker, Colin Moynihan and Sarah Nir headlined, "Police Arrest More Than 700 Protesters on Brooklyn Bridge," saying:

"Police said it was the marchers' choice that led to the enforcement action."

Police spokesman Paul Browne said:

"Protesters who used the Brooklyn Bridge walkway were not arrested. Those who took over the Brooklyn-bound roadway, and impeded vehicle traffic, were arrested."

Fact check

Police let protesters use the roadway, then confronted and arrested about 700 for doing so. It represented a major escalation of brutality and intimidation, suggesting much worse ahead to confront growing numbers coming out.

Many protesting Saturday accused police of entrapping them to arrest mass numbers, hoping to intimidate others to back off.

Video footage, in fact, showed police leading thousands of peaceful protesters as they entered the roadway. However, near the middle of the bridge, others blocked them front and back, stopping their march and arresting hundreds.

The Times quoted Occupy Wall Street media spokesman Jesse Myerson, saying:

"The cops watched and did nothing. Indeed, (they) seemed to guide us onto the roadway."

Blogger Kevin Gosztola said, "The NYPD could have just kept going on the bridge and then led the protesters to a side road on the other side and asked them to disperse."

The Times reported that protesters "insisted that the police had made no mention that the roadway was off limits."

Police, in fact, planned mass arrests. Buses were positioned near the bridge, and every cop had zip-lock handcuffs to restrain protesters. An unidentified police official called what went on "a planned move on the protesters."

Many were charged with disorderly conduct and released, New York Times writer Natasha Lennard among them.

Brooklyn psychotherapist Etan Ben-Ami said police let protesters use the road. "They weren't pushed back. It seemed that they moved at the same time. It seemed completely permitted. There wasn't a single policeman saying 'don't do this.' We thought they were escorting us because they wanted us to be safe."

According to police spokesman Browne, "This was not a trap. They were warned not to proceed." He lied.

Mayor Bloomberg let cops act disruptively, saying they "did exactly what they are supposed to do."

Protesters show no sign of backing down. Their numbers keep growing. Media scoundrels are largely dismissive. Cops do what they always do, acting as "enforcers for crime bosses," according to Trends analyst Gerald Celente.

Co-Opting Occupy Wall Street Protesters

Step one involves providing corporate foundation money with strings. According to Infowars.com writer Kurt Nimmo, Occupy Wall Street organizer Adbusters "is a creature of globalist foundations."

"According to research conducted by Activistcash.com, Adbusters takes money from a number of supposedly progressive foundations, including....the Tides Foundation and Tides Center."

Tides gets Soros money. A charity, not a private foundation, it funds "a spectrum of left-wing organizations."

Soros is also connected to "Day of Rage aka Occupy Wall Street through The Ruckus Society." Ruckus gets Tides money, and Soros' Open Society Institute funds Tides.

At issue is insulating Wall Street, controlling the movement's message and goals, and assuring two key issues go unaddressed: namely, the power of money in private hands and unbridled corporate dominance.

Key to equitably resolving other major issues is returning money power to public control through Congress, according to Article 1, Section 8.

Also crucial is establishing viable state-owned public banks and breaking up too-big-to-fail Wall Street ones.

Occupy Wall Street protesters aren't addressing either, and major media coverage ignores these and other major issues entirely.

Step two involves politically hijacking the movement. Democrat party leaders took notice. So did party-connected union bosses offering support, including New York based Transport Workers Union (TWU) Local 100, the United Federation of Teachers, and SEIU.

Party-connected activist groups Working Families Parties and Moveon.org also joined in. Look for others to follow in New York and elsewhere to smother efforts for major change.

In other words, control public anger. Circumscribe its message. Let it play out before cold weather diffuses it in major northern cities.

At the same time, channel it to support Democrats and Obama's reelection, while business as usual stays unchanged.

Protesters across America and Canada need to refocus energies to end big money power controlling Washington and their lives.

Sustaining efforts for the long haul is essential. So isn't effective leadership and enlisting mass nationwide support.

Moreover, addressing what matters most is crucial - returning money power to public hands representing everyone, not privileged elites alone at the expense of all others.

Fixing a broken system isn't easy. Dark forces will go all out to prevent it. Change depends on people putting their bodies on the line for what's only possible that way.

It took decades in America to achieve major social change now largely lost because committed energy waned. What better time than now to reignite it.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour/.

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