Z Nightly Commentaries
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Recent Z Nightly Commentaries
Secours: Red, White, Black & Blue
Jun 12, 2004
WEB Dubois said the greatest challenge of the 20th century will be the color line. Lately I've been reminded--repeatedly it seems--just how relevant his words remain in 2004.
Schechter: Making the Myth, Forgetting the Man
Jun 08, 2004
NEW YORK, June 7, 2004 -- In the bad old days of the Cold War, we would learn that a Russian leader died when their TV screens went dark and martial music was all that we heard. Afterwards, their channels filled with non-stop accolades and tributes to a "
Seduced by the promise of spring and economic upswing, (my cat stepped on the TV remote and I inadvertently fell asleep to Fox news) I misplaced all good judgment and went car shopping. Akin to Alice who gingerly stepped into the upside down world of the
For many years, health-conscious Americans avidly consumed margarine as a wholesome substitute for artery-clogging butter. Only later did research shed light on grim effects of the partially hydrogenated oil in margarine, with results such as higher incidences of heart disease.
Solomon: Major ÒLiberalÓ Outlets Clog Media Diets
May 31, 2004
For many years, health-conscious Americans avidly consumed margarine as a wholesome substitute for artery-clogging butter. Only later did research shed light on grim effects of the partially hydrogenated oil in margarine, with results such as higher incid
Two years ago, adivasi women in a small hamlet, Plachimada, in Palghat, Kerala started a movement against Coca-Cola. Today, the Coca-Cola plant in Plachimada has been shut down. The victory of the Plachimada movement is major step in reversing corporate h
Solomon: The Media Politics of 9/11
May 01, 2004
For 30 months, 9/11 was a huge political blessing for George W. Bush. This week, the media halo fell off.
Shiva: Wheat Biopiracy
Apr 24, 2004
WILL "GIVE US THIS DAY OUR DAILY BREAD" BECOME A PRAYER TO MONSANTO?
Shah: The Tiniest Trash Bin
Apr 11, 2004
As I approach the tiny, blue bucket of wizened, cracked plastic propped near the sink, various molded plastic and rubber items in hand, the servants washing up start to snicker. I falter, standing there in a crumbling tenement apartment in Mumbai, India.
Street: Serve the Superpower
Apr 04, 2004
The left should respond to the Richard A. Clarke revelations with guarded praise and trenchant criticism. Praise: because Clarke, BushÕs former counter-terrorism czar has removed the veil a bit further from the reckless nature of United States (U.S.) poli
Solomon: Spinning the Past, Threatening the Future
Mar 31, 2004
Political aphorisms donâ€™t get any more cogent: â€œWho controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past.â€ George Orwellâ€™s famous observation goes a long way toward explaining why -- a full year after the invasion of Iraq -- the media battles over prewar lies are so ferocious in the United States. Top administration officials are going all out to airbrush yesterdayâ€™s deceptions on behalf of todayâ€™s. And tomorrowâ€™s. The future they want most to control starts on Election Day. And with scarcely seven months to go in the presidential campaign, the past that Bush officials are most eager to obscure is their own record. In late 2002 and early last year, whenever the drive to war hit a bump, they maneuvered carefully to keep the war caravan moving steadily forward. There was no doubt, they were a hard-driving bunch. The most powerful squad of the Bush foreign-policy team ran on the fuel of certitude at such a prodigious rate that even their momentum had momentum -- maybe, in part, because their livesâ€™ trajectories seemed to demand it. War had been declared first within themselves. Perhaps such steeliness has been almost boilerplate in history; excuses for aggressive war have never been hard to come by. In this case, no amount of geopolitical analysis -- from media pundits, academics and other commentators -- could really do more to shed light than the lightbulb comprehension that these people in charge had from the outset made the determination that war it would be. So, every attempt at civic engagement and demonstrations against the war scenario was, in effect, trying to impede â€œleadersâ€ who had already gone around the bend. A very big bend. One of the American mass media taboos was to seriously suggest the possibility that the lot of them -- Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice and, yes, Powell -- were, in their pursuit of war on Iraq, significantly deranged. Working back from their conclusion of warâ€™s necessity, top Bush administration officials -- with assistance from many reporters and pundits -- were reading the calendar backwards, hellbent on getting the invasion underway well before the extreme heat of summer. There was also political weather to be navigated. Though much more susceptible to manipulation than the four seasons, the electoral storms would be starting for the 2004 presidential contest, and a secured victory over Iraq well in advance seemed advisable. The peace-seeking pretense was dripping with charade in the months before the invasion. Journalists kept writing and talking about the chances of war as though President Bush hadnâ€™t already made up his mind to order it. Yet what Bush said in public was exactly opposite to reality -- a â€œone-eighty.â€ When he talked about preferring to find an acceptable alternative to war, he was determined to bypass and destroy every alternative to war. Rational arguments would not work to forestall the presidential order to unleash the Pentagon. Despite the obstacles, which included vital activism and protests for peace, the chief executive easily got to have his war -- the best kind, to be fought and endured only by others. Eighteen months ago, looking out at Baghdad from an upper story of a hotel, I thought of something Albert Camus once wrote. â€œAnd henceforth, the only honorable course will be to stake everything on a formidable gamble: that words are more powerful than munitions.â€ Later, any and all words were to be vastly outmatched by the big guns trained on Iraq. One afternoon, 14 months ago, inside a little shop in Baghdadâ€™s crowded souk, a young boy sat behind an old desk, brown eyes wide, quietly watching his father unfurl carpets for potential customers, and I wondered: â€œWill my countryâ€™s missiles kill you?â€ Key questions of the past are also crucial for the future. For instance, can the United States credibly wage a â€œwar on terrorismâ€ by engaging in warfare that terrorizes civilians? Close to 10,000 Iraqi civilians have died because of the war during the past year. Does the mix of mendacity and deadly violence from the Oval Office really strike against terrorism, or does it fuel terrorist cycles? And, in the realm of news media, how many journalists are willing and able to go beyond reliance on official sources enough to bring us truth about lies that result in death? __________________________________ Norman Solomon is co-author, with Reese Erlich, of â€œTarget Iraq: What the News Media Didnâ€™t Tell You.â€ __________________________________ Background link: http://www.accuracy.org/war-releases.htm
Solomon: They Shoot Journalists, Don't They?
Mar 25, 2004
To encourage restraint in war coverage, governments don't need to shoot journalists -- though sometimes that's helpful.
Sharma: Gm Crops: If It Canâ€™t Work, Fake It
Mar 08, 2004
For years, they made us believe that genetically modified (GM) crops reduce pesticide applications and thereby help in protecting the environment. For years, they worked hard, manipulating scientific data, to justify the increasing public investment in a risky technology. For several years now, they have succeeded in diverting the public attention from the more pressing problems of hunger and malnutrition for the sake of private profit.
Schechter: The Flori-Duh Election
Mar 07, 2004
Who made the following statement?
U.N. Spying and Evasions of American Journalism
The Indian peasantry, the largest body of surviving small farmers in the world, today faces a crisis of extinction.
Solomon: Presidential Candidates: Compared to What?
Feb 01, 2004
Engaged in a continuous PR blitz, presidential campaign strategists always strive to portray their candidate as damn near perfect. Even obvious flaws are apt to be touted as signs of integrity and human depth. Such media spin encourages Americans to confu
Schechter: Their Media War And Ours
Jan 19, 2004
Media went from becoming a complaint to being an issue in 2003. The pathetic cheerleading that called itself TV coverage of the war in Iraq, and the battle to stop new FCC rules demonstrated that there is a large constituency for media activism and organi
Solomon: For Telling The Truth
Jan 03, 2004
Few Americans have heard of Katharine Gun, a former British intelligence employee facing charges that she violated the Official Secrets Act. So far, the American press has ignored her. But the case raises profound questions about democracy and the public'
The collapse of the Cancun W.T.O. Ministerial was to a large extent due to the blatant unfairness of the rules of the Agreement on Agriculture which is killing farmers, killing biodiversity, killing fair and just distribution and killing food security and