Jews try to start boycott against American news papers (english) Bill 3:01pm Thu May 30 '02 (Modified on 6:27pm Thu May 30 '02) article#183437 Now the stinking Jews are really showing what they are and how they are trying every form of power grab. If they don't like what is being said about them they try any form of censorship and use every conceivable lie and distortion for a control method. U.S. press embroiled in Middle East conflict Boycotts over 'anti-Israel bias' spread, Pro-Palestinian groups counterattack By Diana Lynne é 2002 WorldNetDaily.com The battle has intensified in the new Mideast war front †American newspapers †as the Washington Post becomes the latest major daily to come under attack for a perceived anti-Israel bias in its coverage of the conflict, and pro-Palestinian groups mobilize for a counteroffensive to what they see as an orchestrated effort by Jews to sway public sentiment. A grass-roots organization of professionals and lay people based in the Washington, D.C., area is calling on Post subscribers to halt their subscriptions during the week of June 10 to June 17 to "protest the paper's skewed coverage on Israel." BoycottThePost.org launched an online petition and is sending e-mail alerts about their effort to "achieve truthful reporting on the Middle East." The group is also contacting major Post advertisers to give them the opportunity to "save money" during the boycott week. "We're not interested in putting the Post out of business. We want them covering the news. We just want them to be fair and honest," activist Peter Hébert told WorldNetDaily. "The only way for democracy to function is if the press performs its role of full information." On its website, the group lists an archive of "documented bias" members say they've grown accustomed to over the past 18 months. These include: "Outright falsehoods Attributing emotions to actions, which shapes opinion Reporting Palestinian testimonial as fact, but Israeli testimonial as 'claims' Ignoring important facts/context Referring to terrorists as 'gunmen,' 'militants' and 'freedom fighters' Legitimizing terrorism as a valid political tool by stressing the 'rationale' for it De-humanizing Israeli suffering by blaming the victim for the violence Referring to 'settlers' as 'radicals' Headlines serving as conclusions News analysis and commentary not labeled as such A journalist's opinion reported as news Phrases like 'cycle of violence' and 'levels of violence' blur the distinction between offensive operations by terrorists and defensive operations by a sovereign state In depth story-telling of the suffering of Palestinian people, but no corresponding analysis of rampant Palestinian Authority corruption, or comparison to conditions when Israel managed and provided infrastructure for the same area Report[ing] that West Bank and Gaza were 'occupied territories' when in fact these areas had been under PA control since 1993 per Oslo Quick to show Palestinian suffering but rarely showing Israeli terror victims, and when they do, it's side by side with conditions in Palestinian controlled areas †implying their situation is Israel's doing." Hébert offers a specific example of the Post "ignoring important facts/context" which, in his view, represents intentional distortion on the part of the Post: "An April 20 Associated Press story, 'Gunman Kills Israeli Border Policeman,'" said Hébert, "was the source for The Washington Post's April 21 article 'Israel Sets Condition For Jenin Camp Probe.' ... [The Post] omitted the key factoid and thereby downplayed the facts and misinformed the paper's readers. AP's version in part reads: 'Sharon should expect all doors of hell to break loose,' vowed a masked militant, referring to Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. 'We are ready for martyrdom. But the occupation will never be safe on the land of historical Palestine, from the river to the sea,' the man told the crowd. "The Washington Post's sanitized and dumbed down version ... reads: 'Sharon should expect all doors of hell to break loose,' one of the mourners was quoted as saying. "The omission of the phrase 'from the river to the sea' distorts the facts and downplays reality. 'From the river to the sea' is Syria's position, which the Saudis hold, and this is pre-1947, pre-U.N. Partition Resolution †the Arab nations rejected a two-state solution. Up until the Saudi Proposal, they still rejected a two-state solution. This 'from the river to the sea' is connected with the full right of return of the 4 million Palestinian Arabs back into places within Israel. That was the deal killer and why Arafat walked away from Camp David II in June 2000." Laurel Anchors, an attorney and spokesperson for the group, claims the paper violates the code of ethics of the Society of Professional Journalists. "In a page-one article today, there's an article about the murder of Israeli high school kids by Palestinians, who are called "gunmen," said Anchors. "These boys were playing basketball. But in the article, they weren't murdered, just killed. ... The article continues inside the paper, and below the article there's a large picture of Palestinian women looking upset with a caption that says something like 'Looking for Relief.' Who are we supposed to feel sorry for here? If this had been Palestinian kids killed, you'd see a front-page photo of grieving Palestinians, and the gunmen would have been called "murderers." This, to me, is not just an accident. It's a very conscious effort to portray a point of view. One of the journalistic code of ethics is to look at your own bias and put it aside." Anchors details accounts of being ignored and even shouted at by "hostile" and "defensive" Post editors when she contacted the paper to initiate dialogue numerous times over the past six months. "We tried requesting meetings, but were either stonewalled or treated rudely," says Anchors. "We hope that the boycott will help the Post's editors realize that they've got a sizeable group of dissatisfied readers in the community, people who have noted a pervasive and long-term tendency to biased reporting by the paper." Post spokesperson Eric Grant says the paper takes the issue "very seriously because of its reputation as one of being conscientious and bringing fairness to the issues." "The Washington Post has been very receptive to the concerns of the community regarding the Middle East coverage," Grant told WND. "Managing Editor Phil Bennett and Assistant Managing Editor David Hoffman met with members of the Jewish community, the American Jewish Committee, in early May for two hours. It was a very productive meeting." When asked whether the meeting spawned any changes in coverage Grant responded, "We do believe our coverage is balanced. ... Our correspondents are working under duress and have come under pressure from both sides in this conflict and have worked long hours to provide coverage and that shouldn't be lost in all of this." The Post boycott initiative comes on the heels of similar grass-roots efforts targeting the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle and the Chicago Tribune. As WorldNetDaily reported, StandWithUs.com, an 8,000-member group of concerned Christians and Jews born out of a living room gathering of "regular moms," rabbis and community leaders a year ago, joined a community-wide, synagogue-driven mobilization of Los Angeles Times readers to stage a subscription protest commencing on April 17 in observance of Israeli Independence Day. The paper put a "rough estimate" of a thousand on the number of cancellations called in that day, which Communications Director Mike Lange stated "represent less than one-tenth of one percent of our average daily subscriptions." Citing results of an online survey and interviews with people at all the temples, StandWithUs spokesperson Allyson Rowen Taylor says a better estimate of cancellations is "closer to 7 - 10,000." StandWithUs declared a temporary truce in the boycott as a conciliatory gesture following a lengthy meeting with Times editors, during which the group's concerns were presented. "Some readers may take objection to specific articles," said Times Editor John Carroll in a statement released during the first week of the subscription boycott, "but I am confident that, over time, careful readers of this newspaper will get a full, balanced account of these unsettling events." WorldNetDaily also reported that prominent Jewish leaders called for a boycott against the New York Times over perceived anti-Israel bias. "There was a flurry of cancellations in late April, but they've abated," Catherine Mathis, vice president of corporate communications told WND. Mathis said no meeting between editors and community leaders akin to that held by the Washington Post had occurred. When asked what might explain the leveling off of subscription cancellations Mathis said, "I can't speak to the issue of why the cancellations abated, but we are highly conscious of sensitivities surrounding coverage of the Middle East. Our determination is to cover all sides thoroughly, dispassionately and with scrupulous impartiality." Pro-Palestinian counterattack The Palestine news agency Wafa, reported Tuesday that the "intense pressure campaign by several pro-Israel groups" seeks to "influence U.S. news coverage of the Middle East" and is "said to be motivated by a concern that media coverage of the Middle East †especially articles and broadcasts deemed 'sympathetic to Palestinians' †could weaken public support for Israel and influence what is generally seen as a historically pro-Israel U.S. policy." Wafa quotes a column by Washington Post ombudsman Michael Getler, in which he refuted the charge of bias: "Is it possible that so many major American news organizations are getting this story wrong †that some sort of national media conspiracy is at work here? That, of course, is not the case, and news organizations will persevere in reporting this story in an unflinching, unintimidated fashion that reports the news in the most accurate way possible for their entire readership." "It's a little bit like 'you're with us or against us,'" Wafa quotes James Naughton, former executive editor of the Philadelphia Inquirer and now president of the Florida-based Poynter Institute for Media Studies, as saying. Wafa quotes Rabbi Michael Lerner, editor of the San Francisco-based Tikkun magazine, as likening the boycotts over anti-Israel bias to "McCarthyism." "We're a grass-roots initiative; we have limited things we can do," argued Dr. Michael Berenhaus a Bethesda, Md., optometrist and spokesperson for BoycottThePost.org. "We represent a huge readership who is expressing a symbolic gesture. We're not looking for the Post to be pro-Israel. We're looking for it to be pro-fairness, pro-accuracy and pro-honesty." According to Wafa, newsroom officials see pro-Palestinian groups beginning to expand their own lobbying and public-relations efforts. One group, according to Hébert, even launched a website similar in design to BoycottThePost.org under the domain "BoycottThePost.com," that called for a subscription boycott over a perceived Pro-Israel bias. "Imitation is the highest form of flattery," Hébert said. "But they don't have any real beef. It's clear they're just trying to obfuscate our efforts." Caught in the crossfire of this new Mideast war front, news executives are donning flack jackets. National Public Radio (NPR) ombudsman Jeffrey Dvorkin, told ABC News he and 60 or so ombudsmen at newspapers across America are convinced they have never seen anything quite like this. Dvorkin said he fielded phone calls and tens of thousands of e-mails from listeners on both sides of the issue, but primarily from listeners sympathetic to the Palestinian people. "There is intense pressure from both sides to make sure their perspective is heard and, even more importantly, the other perspective is not," Dvorkin told ABC. Anchors thinks editors need to be less preoccupied with achieving balanced coverage and more earnest in seeking the truth. "Freedom of the press in this country means no propaganda from the government," she said. "But it also means no propaganda from the editors." -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- If you'd like to sound off on this issue, please take part in the WorldNetDaily poll. Related stories: New Mideast war front: American newspapers Pro-Palestinian bias among CNN ranks? MSNBC declares state of Palestine Related special offers: THE NEWS MAFIA: A groundbreaking look at media bias "Bias: A CBS Insider Exposes How the Media Distorts the News" -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Diana Lynne is a news editor for WorldNetDaily.com. www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?A... add your own comments Hey, wait a minute! (english) Whichizit? 4:16pm Thu May 30 '02 comment#183460 Why do Jews need to boycott the newspapers, I thought they already control the media! You can't have it both ways, Nazi scum. Create your own media (english) were all Palestinian here 6:27pm Thu May 30 '02 comment#183489 Im in favor of a boycott on the Zionist-controlled US entertainment/news industry. Thats saying that I believe all of the corporate-based media is under the Nazi boot. ----------------- Analysis of the Chomsky-Bennet Debate on CNN (english) al-Farabi 12:53pm Thu May 30 '02 (Modified on 11:08pm Thu May 30 '02) article#183405 Both Chomsky and Bennet did poorly in this debate. It was a essentially a draw, which means Chomsky lost. He lost because he did not prove the contention that the US is a leading terrorist state. Of course, Chomsky is right, but he did not argue the case in convincing manner . . . Analysis of the Chomsky-Bennet Debate on CNN. [The full text of the debate can be read below]. Both Chomsky and Bennet did poorly in this debate. It was a essentially a draw, which means Chomsky lost. He lost because he did not prove the contention that the US is a leading terrorist state. Of course, Chomsky is right, but he did not argue the case in convincing manner, so as to persuade someone ignorant of the subject matter that he has all the facts. But letâ€s start with Bennet. Bennet was a very poor debater, and if he were judged by an expert in debate, or by a logician, he lost the contest. Bennet used totally fallacious reasoning. His presentation was full of ad populum arguments, ad hominem attacks, and non-sequitors. Ad populum fallacies: his speech was laced from start to finish with patriotic catch phrases which were designed to appeal to human emotion, rather than to address the points made by Chomsky. Such attempts to push the jingoist button, which the media have been doing for the last ten months, probably had their effect. But they should not be part of a serious presentation. Ad hominem attacks: Bennet tried at least three times to attack Chomsky personally, by calling Chomsky â€a supposedly learned person,†by saying he should be â€ashamed,†and by leveling personal accusations ( â€this is a man who has made a career out of hating America and out of trashing the record of this countryâ€). Ad hominem attacks are the most despicable tactic used by debaters. Bennet should be disqualified from ever appearing in a debate because of his frequent recourse to such tricks. Non-sequitors: Bennetâ€s main strategy was not to deny or argue against any of the evidence which Chomsky presented. He simply diverted the conversation to irrelevant issues. What the US did in War Two, the fact that some cameras have shown pictures of smiling Afghans--- such points are not relevant to the charge that the US is a terrorist nation. Bennet was guilty of gross hypocrisy. World War Two was won essentially by the USSR. Over 80 per cent of German soldiers killed, were killed by the Soviets. The battle of Stalingrad, in which the Soviets killed over a million German troops, was the turning point of the war. I doubt Bennet would put those facts forward to mitigate the human rights abuses of Stalinâ€s regime. ==== What Chomsky should have said ==== Chomskyâ€s arguments were sound and valid, but not very effective. I think his mistakes were tactical. The conversation began with Chomskyâ€s assertion that the US is not an â€innocent victim.†When asked to explain this, Chomsky went into a detailed explanation of the World Courtâ€s judgment against the US in Nicaragua. This is an excellent illustration of Chomskyâ€s thesis, and those of us who know and love Chomsky understand what he is talking about. But this is too complicated for sound byte TV. I believe he would have done better to give some straight statistics. For instance: Why is the US not an â€innocent victimâ€? Two million killed in Vietnam, mostly innocent civilians. 15-20,000 killed in Nicaragua. Over 200,000 killed in Guatemala, with Washingtonâ€s aid and blessing. Over 30,000 killed in Turkey, with US aid and blessing. On Sept. 11, 2,800 died. But compare that with the hundreds of thousands of Iraqiâ€s who died under US fire, mostly civilians, and the well over a million who have died as a result of US imposed sanctions. Imagine you are the mother of a child who died under a US bomb. You would consider the US a terrorist state. (And so on). Chomsky needed to give more statistics and more vivid examples. The World Court judgment is not comprehensible to the average TV viewer, unless he understands that 15,000 civilians died as a result of the deliberate targeting of clinics, farms, and government offices. Chomsky did not make this point strongly enough. You cannot understand the horror of what is happening in Turkey, unless you know that at least 30,000 Kurds have died in this civil war, to which the US is a party. Chomsky also should have pointed out, in response to the remark about â€smiling Afghan faces†that more civilians have died, an estimated 8 to 20,000, as the result of recent US bombing, than died on Sept. 11. Would you smile if your brother was one of those killed? (Technically that would be an ad hominem circumstancio argument, but Chomsky needs to appeal somewhat to human feeling). Chomsky did well to refuse to answer the question â€Why do you continue to live in a terrorist state†the first time it was asked. However, he gave in the second time, saying, â€I choose to live in what I think is the greatest country in the world, which is committing horrendous terrorist acts and should stop.†I think this was a mistake. He should have said, â€The issue we are discussing is not where I choose to live, but the fact that the US is committing horrendous terrorist acts which should stop.†Once you give in on the patriotism, you have ceded ground, logically. You embrace a fallacy, which asserts that in order to participate in this discussion, you must LOVE America, otherwise you disqualified. Chomsky was unable to substantiate his points, due to lack of time, and unfair diversions. For instance, Chomsky was interrupted at the outset, in the middle of his fourth sentence, by Paula Zahn. When Bennet gave his speech, rambling on and on about why refugees come to the US, the US liberation of Europe in World War Two, saying the good done by the US outweighed the evil, and so on --- Paula Zahn did NOT interrupt him. The speeches were moderated so as to give Chomsky less time. And that was the concrete result. A quantitative analysis of the debate shows that Bennet was actually able to speak a hundred more words than Chomsky. Bennet cut off Chomsky numerous times, and Paula Zahn did it at least twice. Thus, although Paula Zahn was, in her stance and demeanor, far more fair than I thought she would be, the structure of the debate slighted Chomsky. And let us not forget that Bennet had already been interviewed by Paula Zahn about a week ago. Bennet trashed Chomskyâ€s book, with no opposition. To be fair, Zahn should have invited Chomsky on to present his views without so much interruption (as Bennet was allowed to do). Then they could have scheduled a debate for another time. Of course, CNN invited Chomsky on the show precisely to marginalize and discredit his view. As Chomsky himself has pointed out, in MANUFACTURING CONSENT, the corporate controlled media has a strategy of giving just brief glimpses of leftist critics, so as to make them appear as bizarre and out of step as possible. The set up in the Chomsky-Bennet debate was a classic illustration of the point. Chomsky did not succeed. Yet, he could not very well refuse to debate Bennet, because that would undermine his contention that the mainstream media never invite him on. A refusal to debate would have been interpreted as cowardice, or ivory tower disdain. Frankly, having seen the result of his acceptance, I think he might have done better to refuse. He appears to have fallen into their trap. To the average viewer, Bennet probably appeared to be the winner. But this is only because the facts upon which Chomsky bases his analyses are not well known. Of the US, Chomsky says, â€the record of its actions and those of its allies, are, after all, hardly a secret.†But to most Americans, they are a secret. The statistics about the numbers of civilians killed in US sponsored wars, which I cited above, for example, are not well known. Most Americans have heard over and over that 58,000 US soldiers died in Vietnam. But few know that one to two million Vietnamese died. What I found most striking in Chomskyâ€s presentation was the lack of discussion about what the US has done in and to the Muslim World. The â€occasion†for this discussion is, after all, the 9-11 attacks and their aftermath. Chomsky did not mention Arabs or Muslims at all. Most Americans will not understand the relevance of Nicaragua, and the World Court decision, unless they know the full extent of US acts of terror around the world, esp. in the Middle East. Ronald Reagan ordered US Navy vessels to shell the Lebanese coast, during the early 80â€s. Refugee camps were deliberately targeting, resulting in the deaths of hundreds of civilians. US support for Israel needed to be mentioned. During the last several years, over 2,000 Palestinians have been killed, mostly civilians, by Israeli security forces using US supplied weapons. I think these points need to be stressed because many Americans understand, instinctively, how these facts contributed to 9-11. And most Americans will hesitate, when asked, â€Do you really think US military actions in the Muslim world will LESSEN the likelihood of future terrorism (esp. when Muslim civilians are killed by the hundreds)?†Few will answer the question Yes, with any confidence. Chomskyâ€s arguments appear rather abstract and remote from the issue at hand, which is, what should the US do to prevent further attacks on US civilians, such as occurred on 9-11. These types of exchanges are meaningless: <> Whether or not what the US did in Nicaragua was â€international terrorism†is NOT the point Chomsky should be focusing on in this type of forum. I agree with those who say, Chomsky is out of his element on network and cable TV. He admits this himself, when he says that the corporate media are structured for â€concision†which means no in depth thinking is encouraged. Platitudes and â€official truths†can be repeated, over and over, and made the basis for official reasoning. It takes thought and time to challenge official dogma, and the commercial media do not allow the challengers sufficient space to make their case. ZAHN: I would like to start off, professor, by reading a very small excerpt from your book where you write that nothing can justify crimes such as those of September 11, but we can think of the United States as an innocent victim only if we adopt the convenient path of ignoring the record of its actions and those of its allies, which are, after all, hardly a secret. What are you referring to here? CHOMSKY: Well, for example, the United States happens to be the only state in the world that has been condemned by the World Court for international terrorism, would have been condemned by the Security Council, except that it vetoed the resolution. This referred to the U.S. terrorist war against Nicaragua, the court ordered the United States to desist and pay reparations. The U.S. responded by immediately escalating the crimes, including first official orders to attack what are called soft targets -- undefended civilian targets. This is massive terrorism. It is by no means the worst, and it continues right to the present, so for example... ZAHN: Bill Bennett, your response to what the professor said, and then we will let him pick up from there. BENNETT: It's quite extraordinary to hear a supposedly learned person call the United States a leading terrorist nation, one of the leading terrorist nations in the world. It's false and very treacherous teaching. In the situation Mr. Chomsky is talking about, of course, the United States supported the Contras in Nicaragua. The condemnation or judgment by the World Court was not that it was terrorism, but that we supported some unlawful activity. However, when there were free elections in Nicaragua, and Mrs. Chamorro took office, all the lawsuits, all the complaints against the United States were dropped, when you had a democratically elected country. We have done more good for more people than any country in the history of the world. What I want to know of Mr. Chomsky is if he believes we are a leading terrorist state, he is obviously welcome in the United States, why do you choose to live, sir, in a terrorist nation? CHOMSKY: First of all, the World Court condemned the United States for what it called "the unlawful use of force and violation of treaties." BENNETT: Which is not terrorism. CHOMSKY: That's international terrorism. BENNETT: No, it is not. CHOMSKY: Yes, it is exactly international terrorism. BENNETT: No, it is not, sir. CHOMSKY: Furthermore, the escalation to attack undefended civilian targets is just a classic illustration of terrorism. And furthermore, it continues right to the present, as I was saying, so for example... BENNETT: It's quite... CHOMSKY: May I continue? BENNETT: Sure. CHOMSKY: In the late 1990s, some of the worst terrorist atrocities in the world were what the Turkish government itself called state terror, namely massive atrocities, 80 percent of the arms coming from the United States, millions of refugees, tens of thousands of people killed, hideous repression, that's international terror, and we can go on and on. (CROSSTALK) ZAHN: Before you go further, let's give Bill a chance to respond to respond to the Turkish string (ph) of this -- go ahead, Bill. BENNETT: America responsible for hideous repression and refugees? Why is it, Mr. Chomsky, whenever there are refugees in the world, they flee to the United States rather than from the United States? Why is it on balance, Mr. Chomsky, that this nation, when it opens its gates, has people rushing in? Why is it that it is this nation the world looks to for support and encouragement and help? We rebuilt Europe twice in this century, after two world wars. We liberated Europe from Nazi tyranny. We have liberated Eastern Europe in the last few years from communist tyranny, and now we are engaged in a battle against something else. When we went in to Kabul, even the "New York Times" in mid- November showed pictures of people smiling at the presence of American troops, because this country was once again a force for freedom, and a force for liberation. Have we done some terrible things in our history? Of course we have. But as Senator Moynihan has pointed out, our people find out about them from reading the newspapers and watching television. When you look at this nation on balance, in terms of what good it has done and what bad it has done, it is grossly irresponsible to talk about this country as a terrorist nation, and to suggest, as do you in your book, that there is justification, moral justification, for what happened on 9/11. For that, sir, you really should be ashamed. CHOMSKY: You should be ashamed for lying about what is in the book, because nothing is said -- in fact, the quote was just given, nothing can justify the terrorist attacks of September 11. You just heard the quote, if you want to falsify it, that's your business. BENNETT: No -- well, I... CHOMSKY: Just a minute -- did I interrupt you? Did I interrupt you? ZAHN: Professor, let me jump in here, but implicit in that -- aren't you saying that you understand why America was targeted? CHOMSKY: Do I understand? Yes, so does the U.S. intelligence services, so does all of scholarship. I mean, we can ignore it if we like, and therefore lead to further terrorist attacks, or we can try to understand. What Mr. Bennett said is about half true. The United States has done some very good things in the world, and that does not change the fact that the World Court was quite correct in condemning the United States as an international terrorist state, nor do the atrocities in Turkey in the last few years -- they are not obviated by the fact that there are other good things that happen. Sure. That's -- you are correctwhen you say good things have happened, but if we are not total hypocrites, in the sen se of the gospels, we will pay attention to our own crimes. For one reason, because that's elementary morality -- elementary morality. For another thing, because we mitigate them. ZAHN: All right, professor, I'm going to have to leave it there with you, Bill Bennett, and we have got to leave it to about 20 seconds. BENNETT: It there any nation that acknowledges its errors and its sins and its crimes and the things it has done that are not consistent with its principles more than the United States? No, there is not. This is also the man, just let it be said for the record, who said that the reports of atrocities by the Khmer Rouge were grossly exaggerated. This is the man who said when we engaged the Soviet Union that we... CHOMSKY: No, it's not. But that is... BENNETT: I didn't interrupt you -- that we were continuing the Nazi effort against Russia. Go through the Chomsky work, line by line, argument by argument, and you will see this is a man who has made a career out of hating America and out of trashing the record of this country. Of course, there is a mixed record in this country, why do you choose to live in this terrorist nation, Mr. Chomsky? CHOMSKY: I don't. I choose to live in what I think is the greatest country in the world, which is committing horrendous terrorist acts and should stop. BENNETT: I think you should say greatest -- I think you should say greatest a little more often. CHOMSKY: If you want to be a hypocrite... (CROSSTALK) BENNETT: I think you should acknowledge its virtues a little more often, Mr. Chomsky. CHOMSKY: And you should acknowledge its crimes. BENNETT: I do. Read my book. You will see it. CHOMSKY: No, you never do. No, sorry. And if you want to... BENNETT: I am reading other people's books. CHOMSKY: If you want to know what I say, do not listen to Mr. Bennett's falsifications of which I just gave an example. BENNETT: Read both books. ZAHN: Gentlemen, we are going to have to cut off both of you there. Noam Chomsky, Bill Bennett, thank you for both of your thoughts, and I think probably the best course of action anybody can take out there, is buy both of your books so they can make their own judgment. BENNETT: That's fine. ZAHN: Gentlemen, thank you very much for your time. CHOMSKY: Yes.N add your own comments ... (english) ... 2:56pm Thu May 30 '02 comment#183434 great to see this posted here! thanks! It wasn't a debate (english) cfs 7:30pm Thu May 30 '02 comment#183508 It was a five minute corporate media interview. Might I suggest you put your well-informed efforts toward something more productive than analyzing this mostly frivolous event? CFS is absolutely right (english) Arch Stanton 8:44pm Thu May 30 '02 comment#183529 This wasn't a debate it was a sideshow. The only mistake Chomsky made was agreeing to appear on the show at all. To whoever posted this (english) observer 11:01pm Thu May 30 '02 comment#183555 "al-Farabi", are you sure you don't work for CNN? heh...You take the corporate media far too seriously. It's not a matter of who won or lost, it's a matter of whose side your on. Get a life asshole. comment (english) red 11:08pm Thu May 30 '02 comment#183556 No rest for the ruling class. ---------------------- comments from item 183436 to the same text: Thanks CNN (english) Jim 4:23pm Thu May 30 '02 comment#183462 "jingoist prick bill bennett" showed what a fool that psuedo intellectual chumpsky wanker is. Transcript (english) T 6:45pm Thu May 30 '02 comment#183492 AMERICAN MORNING WITH PAULA ZAHN Interview with Noam Chomsky, Bill Bennett Aired May 30, 2002 - 08:33 à ET THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. PAULA ZAHN, CNN ANCHOR: They are two best selling authors with two very different takes on terrorism. In his book, "9-11," Noam Chomsky accuses the United States of being a terrorist state. He says the war in Afghanistan is wrong, states that in recent history, America has committed acts of terrorism, and maintains that America's foreign policy is hypocritical. In Bill Bennett's "Why We Fight," he says the war on terror is morally just. He maintains that democracy and human rights are America's noblest exports, and that we must be prepared to respond to anti-American critics. Talk about a war of words. =====snip====== CNN sucks (english) greg 7:23pm Thu May 30 '02 comment#183507 They could have given both parties a little more time to have a extended debate on this, which of course would have allowed Chomsky to eat Bennett alive (Bennet got noticeably more speaking time, especially when you throw in the fat that Zahn had already interviewed Bennett once talking about Chomsky's book without Chomsky present). But hey, at least they are being forced to acknowledge that Chomsky is being taken much more seriously by the readership public. Wasn't it the saying of Ghandi that first they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win? they both come off as kind of repulsive (english) dk 7:50pm Thu May 30 '02 comment#183521 To anyone who actually reads, Chomsky's arguments and documentation are, of course, vastly superior to Bennett's. The sad truth, however, is that most people only see what's on the idiot box which makes them both look like self-serving hucksters. ---------------------- 183225 OPEN PUBLISHING AND CENSORSHIP (english) J. 2:58pm Wed May 29 '02 (Modified on 8:55am Thu May 30 '02) article#183225 Is there any concrete proof that Indymedia has MORE readers now than before? What are the statistics for indymedia hits, and usage over the last several months, as compared with the months before the 'reform'? A debate between ML and J on the issue of Open Publishing. OPEN PUBLISHING AND CENSORSHIP Is there any concrete proof that Indymedia has MORE readers now than before? What are the statistics for indymedia hits, and usage over the last several months, as compared with the months before the 'reform'? ===== A debate between ML and J on the issue of Open Publishing ===== ML: Open Publishing means that everyone has the privilege of posting on the Newswire. REPLY: Not without having the material subject to review and possible censorship. ML: IMC editorial policy, decided by consensus, does not obligate that racist or other such material stay there. REPLY: The policy is not decided by a consensus of the readership. I have suggested a poll of readers, to determine whether the open newswire should be put back on the main page. My post suggesting that poll was censored (hidden). ML: So far, the policies in this regard seem to be very leniently enforced, but the degree to which they are is still the right of the IMC editorial collective to decide. REPLY: Decisions to censor are made arbitrarily. I have observed this. You cannot tell me that the decision to censor article X is made collectively. It must be made by an individual empowered to censor (hide) the article.  As to what is lenient or not lenient, that is in the eye of the beholder. ML: I think those who insist on posting such material should keep this in mind. REPLY: I do not defend the posting of racist material. I oppose the racists. I do not defend the organizers of KKK marches. I oppose the KKK. But I do defend the RIGHT of the KKK and of all groups to march. I also defend the RIGHT of people to post what they want, whether they are racists or anti-racists. ML: If such material adds to an open discussion, then it is probably appropriate that it stay. If it tends to make the Newswire an unfriendly space for under-represented viewpoints and voices, such as the repeated posting of neo-Nazi and other racist materials, then it is my opinion (but not necessarily current IMC policy) that such material should be hidden. REPLY: I don't see why anyone thinks they are wise enough to decide for the entire readership what 'adds to an open discussion'. An 'open discussion,' by definition, is one which does not close the forum to ANY viewpoint. Under represented viewpoints? Who are any of us to decide what is under represented or over represented? Personally, I think the under represented views are those which are non-corporate, or anti-corporate. Yet I find this newswire flooded with corporate news reports. So be it. Often these corporate news reports are interesting. I do not advocate you censor them. Frankly, I find many corporate news wire reports as offensive as racist reports. Classism is as bad as racism in its own way. You oppose Neo-Nazi viewpoints, and think they should therefore be hidden. I have dedicated much of my work to exposing the evils of Fascism, racism, Stalinism, Sexism, and Capitalism. But if we decide to censor anything which is Nazi, or Racist, or Sexist, or Stalinist, where does this lead? I think you should fight these evils in our society on the planes of reason and activism, not by censorship. Once you allow for censorship, the line is crossed, and you will soon be censoring liberals, democrats, conservatives, republicans, left marxists, Leninists, Trotskyists, etc. I do not agree with censorship of any view. But who is to say whether or not the views of Marxist Leninists are not, in their own way, as wrong headed as Fascist views? This is a matter for debate. ML: IMC is under no obligation to supply an amplifier to those who already have the freedom to post here. Hidden articles are still there to read, but IMC is under no obligation to leave stuff on the open Newswire that undermines the mission of the IMC by driving away people who might otherwise read the Newswire. REPLY: Two questions here. One: I believe IMC is obligated to put the open wire back on the main page, where it used to be. The mission of IMC's OPEN NEWSWIRE is compromised by hiding it. Why hide the open news wire and have TWO feature newswires on the front page? I find that incomprehensible and boring. Two: Is there any concrete proof that Indymedia has MORE readers now than before? What are the statistics for indymedia hits, and usage over the last several months, as compared with the months before the 'reform'? ML: It is also my opinion that racist material is NOT an under-represented viewpoint or voice. If anything, such materials are over-represented on this Newswire and in society at large in many subtle ways. REPLY: I completely agree with you on this point. But that is no excuse for censorship. It is entirely irrelevant. Nor is it an excuse for putting the OPEN NEWSWIRE on a secondary page. ML: If you want to have a voice in making such decisions, volunteer to get involved. REPLY: I am involved. I post and write regularly, have attended numerous anti-corporate globalization demonstrations, and work in a field which allows me to fight hierarchy, racism, sexism, capitalism, and oppression is a number of ways. It is not for you to say where and how I should be involved. ML: I think we all already know that your particular viewpoint is probably so reprehensive that you are unwilling to defend it personally and publicly. REPLY: I am defending it here and now. As to its being reprehensible, I leave that for others to judge. This is another ad hominem attack. You do not strengthen your position by attempting to attack me personally. ===== ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS AND RESPONSES ===== ML: J., If you're really an expert on censorship, why do you seem to conflating freedom of speech, freedom to publish, and censorship? RESPONSE: I do not conflate these. ML: As a non-governmental body, IMCs are not in a position to censor anyone. RESPONSE: False. Censorship can occur in governmental and non governmental bodies. The act of censorship involves 'deleting material deemed harmful to the organization.' You know as well as I do, that Corporate Media censor stories which are deemed harmful to the interests of the the owners of the media outlet, or to the interests of their stock holders. Governmental censorship is only type of censorship. ML: There are literally millions of places that people on the internet can publish. RESPONSE: This is roughly analogous to the arguments of capitalist editors who kill stories, saying to their reporters, you can leave the paper. Go set up and publish your own paper. It is censorship, pure and simple. ML: If an IMC decides not to continue listing something on the Newswire, it is still in the Hidden files where anyone can still read it, plus an IMC can't prevent the author from publishing it elsewhere. RESPONSE: If a dictatorial government, in China (or Singapore) for instance, says this story cannot be published, the author can go and publish the story in another country. Still, the actions of that government constitute censorship. If a newspaper editor kills a story which a reporter has researched and worked on, the reporter can publish it elsewhere. The editor's actions still constitute censorship. ML: To me, censorship is what a government does by force of law and authority. Entities such as IMC cannot kill ideas or prevent their publishing entirely, as government censorship can do. RESPONSE: Then you do not agree with Chomsky's thesis, explained in MANUFACTURE OF CONSENT? Why do you limit your definition of censorship to what governments do? Corporations are constantly censoring, and it was for this reason, to combat the corporate restrictions of free speech, that Indymedia was founded--- or so I thought. ML: I understand that your formulation of censorship seems to imply that anytime something is not published or ceases to be listed by any group, including private or collective groups, that it is censorship. REPLY: Not precisely. Censorship is a complex phenomenon, which manifests itself in a variety of ways, including self-censorship, which is one of the most insidious. It is difficult to to define censorship with one comprehensive definition. But YOU defined it terms of authority. I would say that ONE type of censorship involves the employment of a censor to define and delete material which is deemed harmful to the organization which vests the censor with such authority. ML: You say that freedom of speech is involved. If that was the only freedom involved, then your position would be justifiable. But there is another freedom involved--freedom to publish. No one can force IMC to publish anything. REPLY: Then why have what you call an OPEN NEWSWIRE? You cannot have it both ways. Either your newswire is open or it is closed. If you censor (hide) articles, then your wire is no longer open. It is CLOSED to views which you despise. Either have an OPEN NEWSWIRE, or have a CLOSED NEWSWIRE, and call it that. Proclaim that IMC is not an INDEPENDENT MEDIA CENTER. Say it is a DMC, a DEPENDENT MEDIA CENTER, dependent on the decisions of censors who decide what is or is not acceptable. Say it has a CLOSED NEWSWIRE, closed to those who espouse view which offend the editorial staff. ML: IMCs have to retain the right to decide and enforce editorial policy as they see fit. Any other position would take away the IMC's right to choose what they publish. REPLY: This seems to me a not so subtle way of saying, we will censor what we want, when we want, and we have the right to censor. But it is still censorship. ML: Otherwise, the government itself could simply decide what we should publish, a situation just as dire as preventing us from publishing something by censorship. REPLY: I do not see how the government enters here. I am not advocating that the government force you to publish one thing or another. I am asking the IMC to REFRAIN FROM PREVENTING OTHERS from publishing. Indymedia is not publishing the articles. You say the government could 'decide what WE PUBLISH'. So there is a WE, separate from the readership. This contradicts the stated purpose of the indymedia project. 'An essential element of the Indymedia project that allows anyone to instantaneously self-publish their work on a globally accessible web site. ' The crucial phrase here is SELF-PUBLISH. One publishes the material oneself. Indymedia does not publish the article. Then let people publish and get out of the way, please. And bring the OPEN NEWSWIRE BACK TO THE FRONT PAGE. I think you need to take a better balanced view of this issue and to quit confusing the right of free speech with the right to publish. They are two separate, but related, issues. add your own comments =========== Reply to last statement (english) J. 3:25pm Wed May 29 '02 comment#183227 Your final statement, ML, was this: 'I think you need to take a better balanced view of this issue and to quit confusing the right of free speech with the right to publish. They are two separate, but related, issues.' I neglected to reply above. REPLY: I think the new policy undercuts the original revolutionary impetus of indymedia. Under the older policy, where the newswire was on the front page, and the wire was less frequently censored, IT WAS PRECISELY THE RIGHT TO PUBLISH which was enhanced: THE RIGHT OF THE READER TO PUBLISH. What you are arguing for is NOT the right of the readership to publish. You are arguing for the right of the appointed censors to PREVENT readers from publishing. You are creating a separation of the readership and the editorial staff. You are giving editors more power and giving the readers LESS power. Indymedia's unique revolutionary structure was much more empowering to the grassroots than the current policy allows. The false premise in your argument is that Indymedia does the publishing. The people who write the articles are SELF-PUBLISHING, and indymedia editors have to engage in an overt act of NON-PUBLISHING, ie censoring (deleting, hiding) articles to prevent them from being seen by larger audiences. ========== ML (english) uberswank 4:12pm Wed May 29 '02 comment#183240 Is ML an understudy of Ari Fleischer? Did he answer whether the site is more popular or not since the changes. He ever so cleverly sidestepped the question of the blatant censorship of IMC by very narrowly defining censorship, which luckily didn't include non-governmental. His was a bland corporate response defending his actions by using claims that it is for our own good. If some minority group was offended by the overwhelmingly shallow and easily discredited arguments of the "racists" and "fascists" and where too sheepish to say something back, then they deserve their position in life. I mean can't they post anonymously in reply? Are these "hate groups" gonna come to their house and beat them for replying negatively to their propaganda. This is the same argument used by the shrub administration to protect us for those big bad terrorists. To paraphrase Benjamin Franklin, If you give up your freedom for temporary safety, you deserve neither. I'm a big boy, I can handle those bad men. ============ What the fuck? (english) IMC Volunteer 4:26pm Wed May 29 '02 comment#183243 Just because the open newswire is not on the front page doesn't mean that Indymedia is censoring posts or not open. This is ridiculous nonsense, probably from one fo the idiots who was trying to ruin the newswire before we made changes. Obviously, you are having no problem posting your comments here. I'm a member of the newswire collective and I have to say that this change has been welcome in that it reduced our workload. The crazies and the racists have gone away, for the most part. The decision to move the newswire (one click away from the front page) was made for a variety of reasons, the chief one being the desire to highlight the local IMCs and their work. This decision was arrived at democratically and was discussed for a long time. You can complain if you want, but let me challenge you on something. Do you contribute anything in the way of news and opinion, other than this whining? Are you involved in a local IMC ============== Lame arguments (english) sl 4:41pm Wed May 29 '02 comment#183248 It seems the IMC staffer who debated this has a very poor argument. By their actions it is safe to say that IMC has been co-opted by those it was created to expose. This implies that it WILL NOT BE ALLOWED to expose those who have now co-opted the newswire (ie- the elite Bilderbergs and their sidekicks the Trilateral Commission). The latest feature a fear mongering nuke threat copied straight from the corpo news? Damn it is obvious. Reply to Uberswank (english) J. 4:57pm Wed May 29 '02 comment#183250 Reply to Uberswank U: Is ML an understudy of Ari Fleischer? Did he answer whether the site is more popular or not since the changes. Jâ€s Reply: Thank you, Uberswank, for that last question. I hope someone answers it. But even if Indymedia is more popular, it does not justify the censorship. I am simply interested because that was the main justification for the changes. If Indymedia is LESS popular as a result of the changes, then the â€reform†is unjustified even by the standards of the Politburo. U: He ever so cleverly sidestepped the question of the blatant censorship of IMC by very narrowly defining censorship, which luckily didn't include non governmental. REPLY: I am glad you reinforced that point. Deleting information which is harmful to the organization, is the quintessential activity of the Censor, as defined under ancient Roman Law. The dictionary does not limit this definition solely to state actors. The modern â€World Encyclopedia of Censorship†includes discussion of a wide variety of types of censorship, including activities of private and non governmental entities. U: His was a bland corporate response defending his actions by using claims that it is for our own good. REPLY: I find much in common with his response, and the responses of corporate editors which are critiqued by Chomsky and other scholars who reject hierarchical modes of organizing the means of communication. U: If some minority group was offended by the overwhelmingly shallow and easily discredited arguments of the "racists" and "fascists" and we are too sheepish to say something back, then they deserve their position in life. REPLY: I do not think they deserve their positions in life. But I agree with you that such arguments are easily discredited. U: I mean can't they post anonymously in reply? Are these "hate groups" gonna come to their house and beat them for replying negatively to their propaganda. REPLY: I believe that you are here referring to the argument that allowing racist posts will â€scare people offâ€. You are right that opponents of racism have nothing to fear by posting replies. But my argument is not made for the sake of racists. It is made for the sake of free speech. Orwell was another who said, Free Speech is precisely for those views which you despise. U: This is the same argument used by the shrub administration to protect us for those big bad terrorists. To paraphrase Benjamin Franklin, If you give up your freedom for temporary safety, you deserve neither. I'm a big boy, I can handle those bad men. REPLY: Yes, there is a similarity between the arguments of those who represent the IMC Politburo, and the current administration. It just works in reverse. The Administration, and corporate media outlets suppress and exclude the views of Palestinian militants, and supporters of al-Qaeda. The IMCâ€s will allow the statements of Palestianian militants and al-Qaeda to be published on their site (as they should). But they feel that it is permissable to censor the views of a number of people, who say things which offend the censorâ€s sensibility. Al-Qaeda may or may not be more deplorable than censored Author X. I say, donâ€t censor anyone. Let the readers decide what to read and how to respond. For the most part, on this issue of censorship, U, I think we agree.. ============= What Does J. Think He Commands? (english) ML 5:48pm Wed May 29 '02 comment#183256 J., You're twisting the argument once again by claiming that things are happening which are not. #1 - You said, "I believe IMC is obligated to put the open wire back on the main page, where it used to be." That may be your belief, but there is no basis for it. You're entitled to your opinion. And what else you do as an activist is basically irrelevant if you are not willing to become involved in the IMC collective. There is no shortage of people showing up telling IMC how we should do things their way. For them to insist on that and yet be unwilling to do the work of being involved with the collective smacks of a rather elite command mentality on their part. I'll let the readers judge for themselves whether that applies to you or not. #2 - You said, "The act of censorship involves 'deleting material deemed harmful to the organization.'" Since it has already been noted that nothing is ever deleted here, I wonder why you keep insisting that it is deleted. Other than that you are trying to ignore the fact that what you claim is being "censored" becomes pretty weak when everyone realizes that it isn't gone, simply in a more appropriate place than on the Newswire. Anyone can look and judge for themselves whether what is being hidden is appropriate. So far, you have not given one example of something in the Hidden Files that should be back on the main Newswire. But you easily could, as it's all available with the click of a mouse. But then that would undermine your argument about things being "deleted", which I guess is why you are still misrepresenting the facts. #3 - You said, "You are arguing for the right of the appointed censors to PREVENT readers from publishing." Nonsense. See answer to #2. Plus whatever readers publish IS published immediately and in the files at IMC, still accessible at any time. A decision can be made AFTER the fact to move something to the Hidden Files, but only rarely does this happen. And the reasons for doing so are all clearly spelled out in detail. The policies for doing so are the result of extensive discussion among a group of people with widely varying interests and positions. There is no party line here, but some material that is published is clearly still the kind of stuff that should not be on the Newswire. And it gets hidden. Deal with it. If you miss your racist postings and spam, go ahead and visit them in the Hidden Files. And if you were one of those whose abuse led to the change in policy, get a life. Or apply for unemployment if you were being paid to trash it, as some suspect was the case. Or if you really believe in what you claim, set up your own website and run it how you please. The software used here is all open source. If that seems like too much trouble, it's probably because you think you have some sort of unlimited right to command the resources of the collective and are too damn lazy to make the effort yourself. Which is the capitalist paradigm. Ugh! Quick, someone get a crying towel for poor ol' J. REPLY TO IMC VOLUNTEER (english) J. 6:21pm Wed May 29 '02 comment#183258 REPLY TO IMC VOLUNTEER from J. IMC VOLUNTEER: Just because the open newswire is not on the front page doesn't mean that Indymedia is censoring posts or not open. REPLY: Why not? Censorship takes many forms. Chomsky explains this. Herman explains this. The literature on censorship makes the point clearly. One form of censorship is to take the most controversial and provocative material (say, in the newspaper) and put it on the back page. How does the decision to put the wire OFF the main page enhance free expression? I argue it does not. Furthermore, you say nothing about the acts of censorship. IMC VOLUNTEER: This is ridiculous nonsense, probably from one of the idiots who was trying to ruin the newswire before we made changes. Obviously, you are having no problem posting your comments here. REPLY: Ad hominem attacks do not serve your cause. I am not trying to â€ruin the newswire.†This sounds a bit like Bush saying of anyone who wants to criticize policy, â€You are siding with the terroristsâ€. IMC VOLUNTEER: I'm a member of the newswire collective and I have to say that this change has been welcome in that it reduced our workload. REPLY: How did it reduce the workload? It means you have less posts to censor? Why not refrain from censoring any post. That would reduce your work load even further. IMC VOLUNTEER: The crazies and the racists have gone away, for the most part. REPLY: So has most of the readership. So has the previously dynamic atmosphere. IMC VOLUNTEER: The decision to move the newswire (one click away from the front page) was made for a variety of reasons, the chief one being the desire to highlight the local IMCs and their work. REPLY: Not sufficient, in my view. If people want to read the local IMC articles, they can go to the local IMCâ€s. You already have a features collection in the center of the page. I have asked this many times and received no answer. Why do you need TWO sets of feature articles??? This gives more power to the editors and less to the readers to determine content. IMC VOLUNTEER: This decision was arrived at democratically and was discussed for a long time. REPLY: Democracy means the rule of the people. How many people had input making this decision? My point is that the readership itself was not polled. It is easy to do an online poll over a period of weeks. So you â€democratically†arrived at a decision to censor the posts, and to minimize the importance of self publishing? In other words, you democratically decided to act in an undemocratic fashion. As long as ONE PERSON opposes you on this, you have not acheived consensus. No one ever accused Indymedia of being undemocratic except when posts were censored. IMC VOLUNTEER: You can complain if you want . . . . REPLY: Thank you. IMC VOLUNTEER: . . . but let me challenge you on something. Do you contribute anything in the way of news and opinion, other than this whining? REPLY: Who is whining? I am presenting a series of rational arguments regarding the problem of censorship on IMC. Do I contribute anything? Yes. I have probably written more articles than you, though I post under a variety of names. But what does it matter to you. Why do you want to personalize this? If I only published one article on IMC that does not make my argument any less valid. It should be judged solely on the basis of logic and reason. IMC VOLUNTEER: Are you involved in a local IMC? REPLY: I could ask you if you are involved in soup kitchens, or any number of other activities to improve society. But how would that be relevant? The nearest IMC outlet is hundreds of miles from where I live. So is the urban elite going to dictate content based on geography, WHEN IT IS PRECISELY THE ADVANTAGE OF THE INTERNET WHICH MAKES DECENTRALIZATION POSSIBLE? â€Âº =========== Another Reply to ML (english) J. 7:36pm Wed May 29 '02 address: An comment#183272 REPLY to ML ML: #1 - You said, "I believe IMC is obligated to put the open wire back on the main page, where it used to be." That may be your belief, but there is no basis for it. REPLY: Yes, there is. I explained that you cannot claim to have an OPEN NEWSWIRE if your newswire is NOT OPEN to opinions which you disapprove of. You cannot call it OPEN if it is closed, unless you wish to embrace inconsistency and illogic. ML: You're entitled to your opinion. REPLY: Of course I am. Why do you feel a need to say that? ML: And what else you do as an activist is basically irrelevant if you are not willing to become involved in the IMC collective. REPLY: I am involved as a person who posts on the web site. I may have spent more time writing articles than you. You seem to think that the Indymedia site is your private property. If that is the case, then I must ask you, do you believe in any form of cooperativism or mutualism, a la Proudhon, or Kropotkin, or Chomsky. Or are you a Stalinist, or a capitalist. Your arguments sound like vanguardist or capitalist arguments to me. You support hierarchies. To the degree that you support hierarchical management, I believe you are not in favor of democratic principles. You speak of a â€collectiveâ€? Is this hearkening back to Stalinist agricultural collectives? Why that term? ML: There is no shortage of people showing up telling IMC how we should do things their way. For them to insist on that and yet be unwilling to do the work of being involved with the collective smacks of a rather elite command mentality on their part. REPLY: On the contrary, it appears to me that your arguments are elitist. You do not even know what I have or have not contributed to Indymedia in the way of articles. And if I had contributed more than you, would that entitle me to have more decision making power? I donâ€t think so. Your argument sounds like that of the capitalist who says, I made this company, I own it, and I decide how it is run. But you insist on personalizing the debate. My argument stands or falls regardless of my personal contribution or your personal contribution to indymedia. ML: #2 - You said, "The act of censorship involves 'deleting material deemed harmful to the organization.'" Since it has already been noted that nothing is ever deleted here, I wonder why you keep insisting that it is deleted. Other than that you are trying to ignore the fact that what you claim is being "censored" becomes pretty weak when everyone realizes that it isn't gone, simply in a more appropriate place than on the Newswire. REPLY: I think this is merely a false semantical distinction you are making. When material is taken off of one part of the site, and moved to another it is technically deleted from a site where it is prominently displayed and put in a place where it is much less easier to find. You know that many computers cannot even load the administrator's page. OR is the â€elite†at Indymedia so isolated that they do not know what kind of computers most working class people and activists have access to? YOU AVOIDED ANSWERING THIS ARGUMENT BEFORE. You can say you are â€hiding†the material, or â€moving it†or â€deleting it to put it on a more appropriate page†(basically a trash bin, where few can find it). It is still the same activity, and purpose is the same. The purpose is to make certain views less prominent, and others more prominent. That is precisely the goal and purpose of all censorship, and it amounts to the same thing. If your purpose was not to censor views you despise, you would not do it. Chomsky frequently jokes about the fact that corporate newspapers (like the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal) put the news they donâ€t want people to read, but which they feel obligated to report, in the back pages, in the last few paragraphs of the article. How is â€hiding†articles any different? I notice you are mum about Chomsky. Is that because you disagree with his general theory of censorship? ML: Anyone can look and judge for themselves whether what is being hidden is appropriate. So far, you have not given one example of something in the Hidden Files that should be back on the main Newswire. REPLY: I have given examples. My suggestion for an online poll of Indymedia READERS, to see how many would like to see the open newswire back on the main page, was censored. ML: #3 - You said, "You are arguing for the right of the appointed censors to PREVENT readers from publishing." Nonsense. See answer to #2. Plus whatever readers publish IS published immediately and in the files at IMC, still accessible at any time. A decision can be made AFTER the fact to move something to the Hidden Files, but only rarely does this happen. And the reasons for doing so are all clearly spelled out in detail. REPLY: This seems to be more wordplay again, which avoids the main issue. I will restate problem. You are arguing for the right of censors to â€to move something to the Hidden Filesâ€. You also support the decision to move the Open Newswire off the main page. This is a sort of double whammy, designed to keep the ideas you dislike â€hidden.†It is not I, but you, who uses the word â€hiddenâ€. And why should certain ideas be hidden, and others not hidden? Because the censor disapproves of them, and for no other reason. I have no doubt, but you would protest if every article you published were hidden. You act as if â€hiding†(censoring) articles makes no difference. As if â€hiding†(censoring) were an insignificant action. If so, then why do you insist so strongly on empowering a group of volunteers to spend hours and hours doing it. Your argument seems to be: this is not censorship, the article is still there, people can read it, so why do you object? If it matters so little then I fail to see why you defend it so vehemently. Is it because you think it DOES MAKE A DIFFERENCE? I believe you do think it makes a difference. It has the EFFECT of minimizing the impact of some posts, and maximizing the impact of others. This is the precise motivation for all types of censorship. You never answered what I consider to be the key question: WHO DO YOU THINK IS WISE ENOUGH TO DECIDE WHAT SHOULD BE CENSORED (HIDDEN)? ML: The policies for doing so are the result of extensive discussion among a group of people with widely varying interests and positions. REPLY: If there were no censorship, the views of even more people with even more widely varying interests and positions would be represented on the wire. You do not appear to believe in democracy in practice. You have no faith in the people. Sure, with a totally open newswire a lot of nonsense gets published. But in the long run the truth gets out. ML: There is no party line here, but some material that is published is clearly still the kind of stuff that should not be on the Newswire. REPLY: Whenever I hear a member of any group say, â€there is no party lineâ€, I know I am hearing a falsehood. Come now. You know it to be absolutely true, that any group of people has its own set of biases. The collective set of biases becomes the party line. The party line here is the belief that some people are wise enough to engage in censorship. So I ask again, WHO DO YOU THINK IS WISE ENOUGH TO DECIDE WHAT SHOULD BE CENSORED (HIDDEN)? I believe the BEST WAY to avoid the victory of â€party lines†is to keep the newswire OPEN. You say my position is that of an elitist, but I say ANYONE, however outlandish, however left-wing, however right-wing, should be permitted to post, without anyone removing (hiding, censoring) their posts. This will ensure that no party line prevails. The decision of a relatively small group (relative to the population) to censor will enforce a party line, inevitably. ========= A collateral issue: (english) Converse Murdoch 9:00pm Wed May 29 '02 umlaut@idir.net comment#183278 Dear IMC: If you feel like you need to sort posts out to keep the enterprise on target; how about starting with some basic journalistic standards. I don't need you to sort out ideologies for me. I can handle any kind of ist or ism that comes along. Where you are really blowing your credibility and news value in the open posts section is by allowing these posts which are obviously aimed at soliciting money. All this stuff should be sorted into a category entitled People Trying to Hit You Up for Money. You know things like- Send Ruppert forty bucks, buy M. Moore's book etc. There was one post a while back " Help, big emergency " then the text was nothing more than somebody wanting money to keep their web site open. If you don't do this what will happen is you will end up with commercial solicitations for isms and ideological hucksters that pander to your interests. Before you save the world by sorting out ists and isms you should at least establish your credibility by implementing some minimum journalistic standards and separate the commercials from the news. ========== The Ad Hominem Attacks (english) if yoy can't take it 9:25pm Wed May 29 '02 comment#183282 Don't dish it out, Bill. ========= Arghhhh! (english) Bill White 9:29pm Wed May 29 '02 comment#183283 The personal attacks--ohhh-aiiiii! I'm melting.... Help me, Flying Monkeys Outta My Ass! ======== Bozo Ain't Dead, He's Reincarnated in Bill (english) get a life, Bill 9:43pm Wed May 29 '02 comment#183284 J.(aka Bill White or somebody just like him) posted this: "IMC VOLUNTEER: Are you involved in a local IMC? REPLY: I could ask you if you are involved in soup kitchens, or any number of other activities to improve society. But how would that be relevant? The nearest IMC outlet is hundreds of miles from where I live. So is the urban elite going to dictate content based on geography, WHEN IT IS PRECISELY THE ADVANTAGE OF THE INTERNET WHICH MAKES DECENTRALIZATION POSSIBLE?" How do you think IMC is run? That there's some big grant for Lear jets to fly everyone to different luxury resorts for weekly meetings? Haven't you ever heard of e-mail? Plus anyone can go and look in the IMC e-mail list archives to see exactly how decisions are made. You keep ducking the question of your non-involvement, while insisting on your right to be a high-maintenance critic of everything done here. Get real. You simply want things your way, without the stress of actual collective human interaction. Then you admit you publish "many" articles here under different names. Sounds like Bill White to me. ========= Reply (english) J. 11:20pm Wed May 29 '02 comment#183299 << insisting on your right to be a high-maintenance critic of everything done here. >> I was told that I have right to speak my mind. Now you are saying I do not, because I have not chosen to work for the indymedia collective. So I suppose you agree with Bush; if you are not with us, you are in the enemy camp. Can I say the same to you: You have no right to criticize the government unless you are a part of it. You have no right to criticize the military unless you are a part of it. You have no right to criticize the corporate world unless you are a part of it. You have no right to criticize the press unless you are a part of it. That is clearly absurd, and contrary to every principle of democratic discourse. _ ============= Your Bad Habit (english) ML 8:55am Thu May 30 '02 comment#183356 J., You certainly seem to have quite a habit of twisting the words of others to fit your reductionist thesis. I never said you don't have the right to speak your mind. I was only noting that you seem to be rather narcissistic and obsessive about something you do not being allowed to occur here, considering the fact that your complaints are undermined by the fact that discussion about IMC editorial policy continued to appear on the Newswire throughout the time that your wails of unfairness pierced the night. My feeling all along was that it should have been moved to one of the IMC e-mail lists more appropriate for an extended discussion of something which is a non-news item. The fact that it isn't news only points out the reality that it was the continual posting of non-news that was major factor behind the move of the Newswire off the front page. I'm sure you're one of the people that interpret news as being anything you feel like posting here. The last I checked the Newswire still isn't named the "Free Speech/Anything Goes Discussion Forum". There are plenty of places for that on the Internet (as I already noted to another dose of your misplaced criticism), but you're clueless about such distinctions as always. So you've had your say. We return now to the far more serious business of reporting the news, leaving you to continue wringing your hands over the fact that the world is not a perfect place (according to you.