Posts Tagged 'Propaganda'

Elements of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement the media wilfully ignores

The crisis in Ukraine has provided yet more evidence that the British media is variously ignorant, lazy and cannot be trusted to present news that is not infected with propaganda.

The reporting of the all-important background to the crisis in Ukraine has been nothing other than an exercise in deception. One wonders if any of the hacks have even visited and read the content on the page shown in the image.

Ask the average Briton what they understand about the Association Agreement that Ukraine was being asked to sign with the European Union, and thanks to the media they would either answer ‘a trade agreement’ or look blankly and say they have no idea.  But it is not a trade agreement, it is something much more far reaching than that.  It seeks to being about political dialogue in all areas of mutual interest that:

…shall be further developed and strengthened between the Parties. This will promote gradual convergence on foreign and security matters with the aim of Ukraine’s ever-deeper involvement in the European security area.

That has nothing to do with buying and selling goods and services.  Indeed, a far more significant and crucial element of the agreement is the military dimension outlined in the agreement’s Title II: Political Dialogue And Reform, Political Association, Cooperation And Convergence In The Field Of Foreign And Security Policy.

While that sounds harmless enough, in Article 10 of the document above we find a focus on ‘Conflict prevention, crisis management and military-technological cooperation’, where we find this – section 3 – that would certainly have Moscow seething, particularly when one thinks about how the present Ukraine military has been developed, trained and equipped:

The Parties shall explore the potential of military-technological cooperation. Ukraine and the European Defence Agency (EDA) shall establish close contacts to discuss military capability improvement, including technological issues.

This is one of the areas the EU plans for ‘gradual convergence’ and ‘ever-deeper involvement’, with a country aligned historically, culturally, politically and militarily with Russia and the former Soviet Union.  There is only one destination when the plan is ‘gradual convergence’ and ‘ever-deeper involvement’, and that is union.  The EU’s plans for enlargment includes assimilating the remaining Russian satellites such as Ukraine, but Euro MPs are trying to kid us that only now has this idea come to the fore.

It would always be dangerous ground in the back yard of a country that is insecure, seeking to re-establish itself as a global power and spending big money on building its military capability.  Therefore the Association Agreement was a clearly geopolitical plan with two aims:

  1. To increase the EU’s political and military control over neighbouring countries and continue gradual enlargement
  2. To weaken Russia’s political and military control over its neighbours and hem it in on its western and southern borders

What on earth could Moscow not like about all that, especially with the Russian Navy Black Sea fleet based in Crimea?

While the Russians would be content to see the EU agree a trade deal with Ukraine, of the kind the media would have us think was on the table, the political and military dimensions to the agreement, diplomatically referenced by the Russian ambassador to the EU, was a deliberate provocation in the shape of a power grab by the EU.  Responsibility for all that has followed rests squarely with the EU and its expansionist, power crazed officials in Brussels.  But does our media tell that story?

The lack of impartial news coverage resulting in the disgraceful lack public knowledge about this, despite the EU being our government, the agreement being presented in our name and it being ratified by the British government in Westminster, is the fault of our media – which is pushing the EU’s ridiculous propaganda without question or challenge.

A knowingly untrue media narrative

Time to ease back into blogging after a bit of a rest.  The BBC is once again playing political agendas rather than simply reporting the news today, on the subject of banker bonuses.

Whether you like the Tories or not, the fact is the BBC is biased against them and will score cheap points at every opportunity.  This would be more acceptable if the BBC did the same with Labour and the Lib Dems, but they don’t.  The corporation is content to align itself with parties and causes it identifies as sharing the BBC’s ‘progressive’ worldview.  Hence the pathetic effort to ‘embarrass’ George Osborne today.

Due, we are told, to EU rules, banker’s bonuses are capped at 100% of salary.  However, the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) is applying to UKFI as representatives of the majority shareholder (the taxpayer) to be allowed to set a bonus level for staff of 200% of salary.  The BBC this morning has described this action as ‘trying to get around the rules’.  However the reality is this is strictly within the EU rules.

Banks are allowed to set bonuses at 200% of salary with shareholder permission.  All RBS is doing is seeking that permission.  A guest speaking on Radio 4′s Today programme made this clear, and rebutted the claim by the BBC that RBS is trying to get around the rules and that George Osborne is being put in an embarrassing position by being asked to approve a 200% of salary bonus figure.

Yet in the news headlines at 8.00am, some time after the guest speaker had corrected the false assertion, the BBC once again reported the story as RBS trying to get around the rules.  The facts and the reality have been deliberately ignored by the public service broadcaster because the truth did not fit with the narrative it wanted to portray for political reasons.

The same has been true with the recent nonsense about EU reform and various ‘ideas’ being spouted that, despite completely setting aside what is possible and permissible within the EU, are given airtime as if they were genuine alternatives to leaving the EU.

This casual bias and partisan propagandising is not permitted as part of the BBC charter, but it continues without official challenge.  It does not serve the public, it manipulates the public and such blatant dishonesty demonstrates the contempt in which the public is held by the BBC.  It is another example of why we cannot trust the media in this country.

BBC entrenches in its climate change propagandist role

Anyone listening to the BBC Radio 4 Today programme this morning would be left in no doubt about the BBC’s re-doubled commitment to pushing the establishment’s climate change orthodoxy.

Roger Harrabin and Tom Feilden, supported online by Matt McGrath, set about their work in recent days to provide a wealth of material to be broadcast as a precursor to today’s release of the widely trailed Fifth Assessment Report of the International Panel on Climate Change in Stockholm.

The only word to describe the BBC’s reporting is propaganda.  It is the only description, given the amount of time they have devoted to the Climate Change on that one programme alone today, and their selection of a procession of interviewees who are all paid for members of the climate change alarmist community, reliant on maintaining the narrative and the funds continuing to flow from our pockets into theirs.

There has been no balance whatsover.  Only fleeting references to scepticism were made, without any explanation of the arguments underpinning their argument.  They were quickly dismissed with carefully selected words deployed to give the impression that scepticism is just the preserve of a tiny minority, while suggesting the evidence they have provided that discredits the alarmist position is trivial in nature – as if the sceptics were merely nit picking.

It goes without saying, there was not a single reference to the scandalous story earlier this week about how governments had objected the the ‘scientific’ report because it confirmed the observations of a statistical halt in temperature rises, and pushed for the language to be changed so government policy could be underpinned by the ‘consensus’.  The biased BBC were careful to omit that, careful to airbrush it from the record, lest it lead listeners to have doubt about what will be published later.

 

Every tool in the PR and communicators arsenal was employed today.  In segments of just a few minutes, and in reports from their correspondants, the BBC sought to:

  • Paint the sceptics’ arguments as unreasonable with the use of dismissive language and intonation
  • Present in detail the position and ‘lines to take’ of the alarmists and only present the counter viewpoint as a footnote, while purposely leaving out the salient details that contradict, through science and observation, the alarmist position
  • Deal with the impossible to hide errors and exaggerations by the alarmists by playing them down as trivial matters
  • Give the impression the sceptics have only gained ground in the last few years because of effective PR and use of techniques to sensationalise otherwise shallow and meaningless arguments
  • Deploys statistics as numbers are powerful – pushing the report’s ’95%’ certainty that mankind is warming the planet and there is a need to reverse it
  • Give the impression of balance by playing Lord Lawson’s comments about the 15 years where warming has been statistically insignificant, but only playing his comment in the background of a segment and talking over the key takeaway line about 15 years with no warming
  • Give the impression there has only been a small slow down in warming and use language to suggest the slow down had already passed, even though it is ongoing
  • Appeal to authority time and again by repeatedly stating ‘overwhelming majority of scientists’ agree on climate change, until listeners are repeating it in their sleep

The result has been an utter distortion of events and facts, a partial, biased position that is not reporting, but advocacy for one argument over another.

What the BBC has been broadcasting today falls so far short of its Charter obligations, it makes a mockery of its claim to be an impartial and trusted broadcaster.  As we know there will be no sanction from this by the BBC Trust, it also makes a mockery of the checks and balances that supposedly exist to hold the BBC to account for its output.

EU FUD Watch: Speaking truth to propagandists

Update: The comment thread over on EUobserver (linked below) has seen a couple of Euroweenies trying to hold their fatuous line, but they are having their arguments systematically broken. This is what happens when people challenge ludicrous EUphile claims with facts from the real world.  They have no answer.


EUobserver describes itself as, ‘The trusted source of EU related news and information. Editorially independent, open-minded and balanced news about the European Union.’

In other words it is a propaganda organ of the EU, publishing stories with that service the EU view of itself and the world.  As usual, the party line is followed to the letter today by EUobserver‘s resident Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt (FUD) spreader, Benjamin Fox, who gleefully tells readers:

Japan has become the latest economic power to urge the UK not to leave the EU, warning that the move could put over 100,000 jobs on the line.

The warning comes as the UK government prepares to publish the first batch of audits on EU policy making this week as part of its ‘balance of competences’ review.

This is a story that Richard has already covered on EU Referendum.  The fact is the EU and the single market are different things.  The EU is political, the single market is economic.  We can leave the EU and still remain part of the single market, so none of the FUD about jobs being on the line or our export markets being closed to us is justified.

Given its readership, it is worth the effort to correct the record in the story’s comments section, in other words speaking inconvenient truth to the propagandists.   Being uncertain of EUobserver’s treatment of voices that challenge the party line, it remains to be seen if the comment will be permitted to stay online.  But just in case it doesn’t, a screenshot of it is shown below:


The media is determined to ignore the truth and deny a platform to those who want the British people to know and understand that leaving the EU does not mean we cannot still be part of the single market, membership of which is extremely important to UK businesses that export to other single market members and import goods we want to buy from within the single market.

Leaving the European Union is about extracting this country from political control by the bureaucrats in Brussels.  Nothing more.  There is a mechanism for it that enables us to negotiate an agreement to remain part of the single market.

An independent Britain will have the opportunity to take a seat at the ‘top table’ where rules and regulations are made at the global level – before they are handed down to the EU to implement throughout its member states.  An independent Britain can strike its own trade deals that suit British interests, rather than accept compromise deals borne of the muddled and contradictory interests of 28 competing EU member states.  This is the reality the politicians don’t want the British people to know or understand.

So spread the word loudly, far and wide.  There is a beneficial alternative to the status quo.  There can be a brighter future and a new world of opportunities for this country – and the enabler is leaving the EU.

Delusions of the Living Dead, aka Europlastic Tories

A Victor Kiam moment here at AM Towers.  This blog post over at EU Referendum hit the nail on the head so accurately and articulated my own thoughts so precisely, I have ripped it off almost entirely, with only a few minor personalisations.

——————


Normally, I ignore Conservative Home. That part of the blogosphere remains the hunting ground for tribal warriors, and I have neither time nor patience for its party-before-principle guest and the attendant petty-mindedness.

Others, with tougher constitutions, still frequent the site, and I have thus had my attention drawn to this from Andrea Leadsom (above), who is still pushing her mantra of “meaningful reform” of the EU. And there is also this from George Freeman, also of the Fresh Start Group.

Actually, having read the pieces, I wonder why I bother – why anyone bothers. Neither are saying anything new, nor anything interesting – there is nothing at all that informs or inspires. We are not getting argument – simply leaden propaganda, repeated again and again, presumably to reinforce the belief systems of the faithful – for no one else will believe it.

Richard North’s answer to this was given in June 2004, repeated many times, but particularly in January of this year. These are Richard’s “barking cats” pieces, to which – in conceptual terms – neither he nor I can add very little. Leadsom and her ilk – including her Open Europe minders, say we must “reform”. I, and many others, say that “meaningful” reform is not possible and will never happen.

And those are the positions – fixed, unchanging. There is no debate, nor any possibility of debate. Disagree, and make the mistake of disagreeing too forcefully or too often, as you get “disappeared”. The other side do not want to know, any more than we want to hear the repetitions of their flawed, evidence-free and indeed ridiculous arguments.

From that, though, does not emerge a counsel of despair – simply a recognition that head-butting gets you nowhere. It seems to Richard – and I wholly agree – that a better strategy is to introduce new facts and ideas, which by-pass the blockage. Leadsom might want to bleat about “over-regulation” and “negotiating over tedious directives”, at EU level. We simply point out that the regulation is at dealt with at a global level and that is where the UK needs to be engaging.

On wind turbines, we can rehearse the arguments for and against until the cows come home and the macerated birds fall from the sky. But sell the idea that, if you buy wind, you get diesel, and pay an additional £1 billion extra for the privilege, and the argument looks very different. Similarly, take the claims of our influence inside the EU, and tell people we can’t even argue for our mackerel quotas and again the terrain looks very different.

But talking about the reality and sharing it with others who are not as well informed is why the opposition wants to control the flow of information. It does so mainly by ignoring new facts – by not discussing them, not debating them, not even recognising them. When, for instance, have you ever heard about Codex on Conservative Home?  Where have they added value or anything worthwhile to the sum of their readers’ knowledge?

Thus, we do not speak to the close-minded. It is a waste of time. The likes of Leadsom will go to her grave still arguing for “meaningful reform” of the EU, long after we have left the EU and it has crashed and burned. We can’t deal with that. This is the dialogue of the living dead.  The stake through their heart or axe through their head will be when reality – that thing they desperately ignore as they play party political games for a party political audience – bites hard.

The real reason for the Met Office ‘extreme weather’ meeting

And the hype continues…  This is all part of the ongoing effort to create FUD in support of the political climate change agenda that services a lavish money train.  The Daily Wail is happy to play its part spreading the propaganda.

Have you noticed how until fairly recently weather forecasts just predicted the weather that was expected (to the usual mediocre standard).  But now it is a more common sight to see the weather forecaster standing in front of a split screen with the map on the left and large ‘weather warning’ triangles on the right.  But the weather warnings are seldom extreme events, they are the same kind of conditions we have long been used to on a sporadic basis, but now instead as simply being accepted as the varying nature of our weather they are presented in a way that deliberately suggests the conditions are somehow extreme, out of the ordinary and cause for concern.

I can think back to a May in the late 1980s where I was on my way to the coast and we had snow in southern England.  I can think of numerous occasions where heavy rain resulted in serious floods that covered playing local fields and football pitches.  Even ditches became small rivers and we kids built makeshift rafts to sail along them and try to sink each other.  I can think of several rotten summers where school holidays were characterised by rain, lack of sun and cooler than usual conditions that made a day jumping in the local river and larking about on the riverbank in our swimming trunks less than balmy.  What we are seeing now is not exceptional at all, and I doubt previous generations going back centuries would find them exceptional either.

The issue here is not that the weather has suddenly got very bad, it is that the weather is failing to conform with the Met Office’s predictions for a global warming thermaggedon.

The real reason for this hyped up meeting it that, having had to quietly and reluctantly dial down the rhetoric on ‘global warming’ in the face of observed events, the Met Office is seeking to reinforce its push of the ‘climate change’ narrative, where even conditions that run contrary to the Met Office’s previous predictions (not warmer, not drier, and not less snowy after all)  just happen to have the same human induced carbon root cause requiring the same politically driven taxpayer funded ‘solutions’.  There is nothing new under the sun here, apart for the desperate and cobbled together justifications for ‘action’ being presented to us.

Anyone being taken in by these hyperbolemongers deserves to be taken for fools.  The Met Office remains a poorly performing laughing stock devoted to hype in service of their and the government’s vested financial interests.

Asking people to make a decision without giving them all the options to choose from generates meaningless results

But it doesn’t stop the media from portraying the result as a clear expression of people’s wishes.

In recent surveys held by the British Chambers of Commerce, and now by the SME networking business, BNI, business owners have been asked if they want the UK to remain in the EU and continue to import and export with our neighbours, or to leave.

You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to figure out that a substantial majority of business owners, given this false choice, will opt to stay in the EU in order to preserve their overseas trade.  Why is it a false choice?  Because in none of these surveys have the business respondants been asked if staying in the EU would matter to them if the UK left the EU but remained part of the single market and trade continued as freely with EU states as it does today.

These surveys are inherently dishonest, therefore their results are completely meaningless.  Reporting the results in the way the Telegraph has today, while making no mention of this fundamental, deliberate and persistent flaw in the questioning, means what we are reading is nothing less than blatant propaganda produced by people who restrict the options to choose from for a reason.

What kind of dunces are they turning out of Eton?

This in today from the BBC

Doesn’t Cast Iron Dave realise that the UK is not at the top table of a number of international institutions because British governments have handed our place over to the European Union to ‘speak for us’ as one of 27 nations with often conflicting interests and needs?  For an ‘instinctive Eurosceptic’ he does seem to spend an extraordinary amount of time parroting the EU’s line and encouraging us to be fully assimilated, paid up members of it.

Perhaps it’s because our glorious media prefers not to remind people about the independence this country has given away, and certainly doesn’t want to shine a light on inconvenient facts such as those that show countries like Norway and Switzerland have seats at the top tables of more international institutions than the UK, as members in their own right, speaking for themselves with confidence on the world stage.

It will only be a matter of time until there is an attempt to replace UK and French membership of the UN Security Council as permanent members with an EU seat instead.  What then for Cameron’s drivel about the UK’s place at the top table?

Cameron claims that Eurosceptics are in ‘denial’ when we claim that the UK could go-it-alone and succeed in the global economy.  The fact is Cameron is not only in denial when he claims that the UK cannot, he is deliberately and knowingly lying.  There is absolutely no need for the UK or any other nation to surrender control of itself when everything EU membership supposedly delivers can be achieved through simple cooperation between neighbours.

Actually, perhaps it’s not dunces that Eton and Oxford are turning out, but rather deceitful Europlastic quislings who argue that Britain is not sufficiently capable of speaking for itself on the world stage and not strong enough to manage its own laws, trade relationships or control its own borders when other smaller and less well resourced countries manage perfectly well.  Yes, that sums up Cameron to a tee.

Is the British media useless, or simply complicit?

For those people who explore the media wider afield than these shores for stories with an international dimension, the expression ‘everywhere except the British press’ is an all-too-common descriptor of the reach of certain important developments.  It has merited another outing today over on EU Referendum.

‘Bias by omission’ is the phrase that generally explains these instances where the British public is kept in ignorance about developments they would be very interested in if the media deigned to report on them.

It is bias by omission that we are witnessing today as the British media – working in concert to keep their readers in the dark – turns a blind eye and deaf ear to the important story about the decision of the Swiss people, via a democratic referendum, to tighten up Switzerland’s asylum rules. You can read the story and coverage of the implications of the Swiss vote over on Richard’s blog.

This omission is noteworthy as the subject is one which provokes substantial debate in this country and focuses attention on the inability of the UK, as part of the EU, to control its own borders or asylum and immigration policies.  Perhaps it is this, more than anything else, that the establishment and its media poodles want to deflect attention from.  Any debate that shines a light on the negative and often harmful consequences of EU membership must not be aired, in case it prompts people to hanker for the UK to once again manage its own affairs.  Further, any example of real (if imperfect) democracy in action, compared to the system of elected dictatorship that operates in this country, might have British serfs making demands to determine matters for themselves in a similar fashion.  That of course would never do.

Following the howls of protests from the media about proposals for regulation of their ‘industry’ underpinned by statute threatening the so called freedom of the press, this example of propaganda through silence is as deafening as it is contemptible.  Perhaps the only freedom that matters to the press is the ability to remain part of the establishment and act as its outrider, set apart from the people and operating against their interests, and occasionally throwing a bit of inconsequential red meat to the masses to give the impression of challenging the prevailing orthodoxy.

Politicians often butter up the media by repeating the mantra that we have the best and most effective press in the world, which challenges, probes and investigates before reporting fearlessly.  The evidence, such as this today, shows what utter bollocks that idiotic claim is.  Perhaps what they really mean is that the British press is the most craven and compliant.

Either way, this latest example of bias reinforces that the British people cannot trust the British media to be fair and impartial.  It is not anything of the sort, not even remotely.  Our press is not of the people for the people, it is the political class’ bulwark against the people.  The British media is not being useless when its collectively fails to report important stories in this way, it is simply being complicit in furthering the agenda of the political class by working to keep people in ignorance and maintaining the establishment’s grip on us.  It is on their side, not ours.

Eurobollox

We’ve seen it all now.  Think back to Ireland’s impressive launch of the Riverdance phenomenon and compare that to the Swedish ‘interlude’ on the godawful Eurovision Song Contest tonight.

This is the part of the show that is supposed to showcase a country.  All it is doing is pushing every politically correct, leftist progressive stereotype against a backdrop of the constant mind control message to the audience of millions that ‘we are one’.

It long since became a parody of itself.  But now the politicisation of the event has ceased to be subliminal element of the drive for a united Europe hidden behind a music contest,  the whole thing is now an overt and blatant propaganda exercise where the music is incidental.  Like the EU itself, it’s a joke.

BBC narrative on ‘homegrown’ Boston bombers falls apart

During this morning, NBC News in America has been reporting that the suspects in the Boston Marathon twin bomb attacks are brothers of Chechen origin.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, born in Kyrgyzstan remains on the run while his brother who was killed in a shoot out with police is being named as Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, born in Russia.   Sky News has also been carrying this information, along with news media around the world.

Meanwhile (at the time of writing) on the BBC, despite the time that has elapsed there is still no mention of the names or nationality of the bombing suspects.

Having pushed so hard the idea of ‘homegrown terrorism’ by Americans on American soil, by people who presumably hate the United States as much as the BBC does, it is as if the BBC cannot now bring itself to acknowledge and report that the authorities have identified the main suspects as foreign nationals who originate from a region well known for its Islamist fundamentalism and terrorism.

Of course the BBC will likely say they were waiting for more confirmation in order to be ‘accurate’ in their reporting, rather than first with the story.  But once again, on a major issue where the BBC has form for grudging reporting of the facts, they seem to be last to the party when the story fails to validate what their worldview expected it to be.

The BBC is becoming concerned with news and more concerned with agenda setting and propaganda.

(Update: Shortly after this post, the BBC has updated their news page with the details, well behind the other news media.  Anyone relying on the BBC for information spent more time this morning being less informed than users of other outlets.)

Desperate Deutsche delusion

Reading the German publication Spiegel is often instructive.  Today’s offering is no less illuminating for what it reveals about the perception on the continent of the EU debate here in the UK.

Spiegel makes us aware of the latest foreign political figure to deign to the UK what is best for us, German Foreign Minister, Guido Westerwelle.  Never short of a comment for the media, Westerwelle sticks to the internationally rehearsed script:

With a view to the current debate over Great Britain’s role in the EU, I would say: Germany desires a Great Britain that will remain a constructive and active partner in the EU.

As has been the case so far, the European house will also have different levels of integration, but we would like a deeper and better EU of 27, with Great Britain.

But what really stands out about the Spiegel piece is what the paper doesn’t refer to.  While it says of David Cameron that the euroskeptic (sic) wing of his Conservative Party would prefer to bolt the European Union (clearly they haven’t looked at their voting record or repeated statements about staying in the EU) at no point does Spiegel inform readers that a majority of British voters polled on the subject of an in-out referendum say they would vote for the UK to leave.  Spiegel deliberately lays the uncertainty about the UK’s future down to a section of one political party, with the subtext that if they can be seen off all will be well and the project can continue.

To view the debate through the prism of party politics in the way Spiegel is doing is a deliberate effort to portray the issue as the grumbling of a few politicians being strongly countered by a small number of vocal business leaders.  It is contemptuous in the extreme of the wishes of British voters, treating them and their views as a complete irrelevance.

Spiegel is deluding itself and the German people if it thinks marginalising the views of the British people in this way will cancel them out.  As this arrogance continues so will British attitudes harden.  After all these years our continental cousins still do not understand the culture of the British people.

But the Spiegel piece is useful as a classic example of the EU modus operandii.  The EU is a creature of and for the political elite.  The people and their wishes do not matter.  The establishment thinks it knows best and it acts in its own interest.  The media on both sides of the channel knows its interest lays in cosying up to the establishment for precious ‘access’ and a share of ‘exclusives’ as a reward for the sycophancy.

What all this tells us is that grassroots pressure outside of party politics, and setting aside the untrustworthy / incompetent / unreliable parties and their empty pledges, is the way to force this issue.  The one weakness political parties have is the need to attract support.  Without support their mandate evaporates and their legitimacy is called into question.  It’s the only real leverage the electorate has.  If the parties lack support they are forced to change to try to attract it.  This is why the EU strives to reduce accountability to voters and have all parties offering the same outlook.  Cutting the parties out of the loop will ultimately neuter the EU approach.

The EU’s broadcasting poodle does its job

Most of the smiles in Brussels tonight will be because the members of the European project have awarded themselves the Nobel Peace Prize.  But some of the smiles will no doubt be as a result of the comforting sensation the EUphiles will be feeling about the BBC coverage of the award.

As a recipient of EU largesse, the BBC has made the most of the story and ensured an overwhelmingly positive view has been advanced of the EU and its selective, distorted historical revisionism.  The BBC’s ‘Viewpoints’ piece, titled ‘Experts comment on EU’s Nobel award‘ is as laughable as the Nobel Prize itself:

The 2012 Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to the European Union for its work in promoting peace and stability in Europe. The award recognised the success of Franco-German reconciliation, the EU’s eastward enlargement and peace efforts in the Balkans.

Here several experts on European affairs give their opinions on the award, which comes at a time of tension amid the eurozone debt crisis.

The piece is so one-sided it would have made the editors at the Soviet-era version of Pravda blush.  The ‘experts’ asked to comment on the award line up as follows:

EUphiles:

Heather Grabbe, Open Society Institute, Brussels
Carl Bildt, Swedish Foreign Minister
Mats Persson, Open Europe think tank
Charles Grant, Centre for European Reform
Ulrike Guerot, European Council on Foreign Relations

Eurosceptic:

Nigel Farage, UK Independence Party

This is the BBC at its very worst.  One token Eurosceptic and that person is, as usual, Farage – deliberately approached as the sole anti-EU voice in order to give the impression the Eurosceptic cause is little more than a one-man band and his small party of devotees, and therefore not deserving of ‘equal weight’ coverage.

The only good thing that has come of this ludicrous award is people are openly mocking and deriding the news, as they can see how the ‘colleagues’ have been reduced to giving themselves awards in order to validate their activities.

Entities like the EU and people like Barraso can withstand opposition.  They can withstand hostility.  But they cannot cope with being laughed at.  The Nobel Prize having been delivered by the committee chairman who doubles as the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, is no different to tinpot dictators festooning themselves with unearned ribbons and medals – and the BBC is no different to utterly subservient Ministry of Information spinning positive puff as quickly as it can.

Want to get your own way? Play the climate change card!

Regular readers will know we occasionally get little nuggets of stories from correspondents living near the global hub of the climate change alarmism effort, Norwich.  Last week it was 4×4 fire appliances that had become necessary because climate change is causing more fires and flooding.  Today we have yet another instalment, but this time it is a variation on the usual climate change theme.

Opponents to a proposed housing development in Pinebanks, Thorpe St Andrew, have come up with the novel argument for not building houses on a particular parcel of land… namely that it could ruin ‘rare geology’ vital to research into climate change!

Forget Arctic ice cores, bristlecone pines, glacier retreat and the mating habits of hedgehogs. Cast them from your mind.

The key to unlocking our climatic past and modelling our toasty future resides in a gravel pit in Pinebanks, just down the road from the University of East Anglia (UEA).

A spokesman for Natural England said:

The gravel pit is an important regional geological site. Our role is to make sure any rare geology is protected. If we think the development may damage this then we may object to it.

We want it protected so future generations can benefit from the study of it and reveal more about the earth’s past.

It would be interesting to know if Natural England et al, expressed similar concern for this ‘rare geology’ when gravel was being extracted from the pit.  You know, before someone came up with the idea of building houses around it.

Given the enthusiasm for anything AGW related at Broadland District Council, it seems the gravel pits will be spared being turned into residential estate.  It seems when it comes to this corner of Norfolk, if you want to get your way on any subject, just suggest some far fetched linkage with climate change and your wishes will be granted.  Climate change is the trump card in the big game.

Perhaps the time has come for the Norwich Evening News to rename itself the Climate Change Digest, to better reflect its editorial agenda to brainwash the local population into a CO2 centric terror and relay propaganda from UEA.

Where there is UEA there is climate change propaganda

One thing that is striking about the University of East Anglia is the influence it wields in Norfolk’s local press and local schools and colleges.  UEA’s reputation among the MMGW community sees the media and other educational establishments positively fawning over the college.

Which is why locals in the area are regularly given a dose of unchallenged puff pieces masquerading as news in an attempt to convince them mankind is heating the planet and devastation will ensue.  One such example can be seen below, kindly captured from the Norwich Advertiser by regular AM contributor, Dave Ward:

(click to enlarge)

As Dave points out the devastation must be beyond imagination if the highly praised mock up images reflect the future reality.  After all, in the image on the left we can see water flooding an underpass and lapping over the top of it, having ascended the steps in the middle and not risen at the sides.  Clearly man made global warming must be heralding the advent of intelligent water.

And the image on the right shows Norwich Castle with a new global warming induced moat.  This image is just as disturbing given the area covered by water is one of the highest points of the city and sits approximately 25 metres above sea level.

As the ‘story’ points out, the film made up of images such as these is being supported by the Low Carbon Innovation Centre at the University of East Anglia and the Norwich Carbon Reduction Trust (NCRT).

Dave did a little digging into the NCRT and learned that it refers to itself as a charity, yet there was not any mention of the actual charity number on their website: http://www.ncrt.org.uk/# .  So he searched the Charity Commission website site and found them under charity number 1131601.  They haven’t filed any accounts for the last financial year as they are below the current £10k threshold.  So it would be interesting to see how much support they gave to the ‘on message’ City College envirokids to ensure the film of their poorly thought out and cringeworthy photoshop efforts can be shown at The Forum.

Ignore the sensationalism, understand the real issue

A senior EU official has caused outrage by appearing to suggest that the national flags of member states should be dropped in favour of the EU design of a circle of stars on a blue background, the Mail on Sunday informs readers.  The MoS thinks there’s a story here, but being part of the mainstream media it manages to spectacularly miss the real issue and instead focus on a tiny element of a much wider and more significant problem.

The paper tells readers that:

Christine Roger, the communications director of the European Council, the EU’s governing body, made her comments in a speech to 650 ‘spin doctors’ from local authorities across Europe, including the UK.   She called for a new, dedicated public-relations budget to help ‘sell’ the EU as a ‘brand’ to its increasingly disenchanted citizens.

Before going on to add:

In her speech, a copy of which has been seen by The Mail on Sunday, Ms Roger – a veteran Brussels apparatchik – posed a series of leading questions, including how Europe should be defined. ‘Are we talking about a state-to-be? About a federation?’ she asked.

For good measure the MoS then trotted off to get some quotes from Nigel Farage, who duly obliged by prattling on about flags, the trampling of national identities and the waste of taxpayers’ money, suggesting he clearly only a faint idea what had been discussed and what the real concern is.  Once again the MSM has failed the public and the blogosphere has to step up to spell things out.

It is time to put the witless sensationalism into proper context, then hopefully get some people to sit up and understand the real story here.

Context first…  The ‘speech’ was actually nothing more than one part of a workshop presentation (Workshop I on page 15) delivered as part of EuroPCom 2011, which is organised by the Committee of the Regions.  The workshop was running at the same time as three others, the titles of which are altogether more concerning: ‘Citizen Journalism, opportunity or threat’; ‘Connecting with young people through social networks’; and ‘Outside the Brussels bubble: Europe going local’.

Also, the only thing the MoS would have seen of Ms Roger’s ‘speech’ was a PDF document of slides she used in her presentation.  It’s not just the MoS which has access to a copy, anyone can see it by clicking on the appropriate link.

Now the real story…  EuroPCom 2011, like its forerunner, EuroPCom 2010, is a concerted effort to spread EU propaganda via the national and local media in member states, using public servants on the government and local government payroll to wage a spin campaign from withing government departments, City Halls and Town Halls.  The attendance of many of the participants has been made possible only because our money has been spent to send them to the two day conference.

A measure of how deeply rooted the EU propagandists are in our public bodies can be gained by looking at some of the UK based speakers at the event, who included Nick Jones, the Head of Digital for the Prime Minister’s Office & Cabinet Office; Geoff Meade, Europe Editor of the Press Association; Gyorgy Szondi, Senior Lecturer in Public Relations at the Leeds Business School; Tony Halmos, Director of Public Relations at the City of London; Carl Holloway, Senior Communications Officer at Preston City Council (pictured).

While the Committee of the Regions spins that the total cost of putting on EuroPCom 2011 was around €50,000 (£43,000) for  a two-day event bringing together 75 speakers and 650 participants, that does not tell us how much public money might have been spent by participants on the registration fee, travel, accomodation and subsistence in order to attend.

The aim of EuroPCom is to push a positive vision of the EU at local level in member states.  The real targets are local authorities and regional public entities, the so called decentralised bodies, which send out their free (taxpayer funded) newspapers and issue press releases to local papers.  With that in mind, one wonders how many Councillors will know if Council staff from their authority have attended and if public funds have been used, and how many residents in cities and local boroughs would feel happy with their Council Tax pounds being used for such a purpose.

The real issue is what EuroPCom symbolises.  It is not just the naked propaganda effort and talk of replacing national flags with the EU dishcloth, but the lack of democratic oversight and direct accountability in our boroughs.  That is the point missed by the Mail on Sunday and Nigel Farage.  That is the point that needs to be understood by residents in towns and cities across this country.

So once again blogs like this one will have to do for free the work the MSM journalists are so lavishly paid for, but consistently fail to do. While EuroPCom speakers have considered how social media can be used to advance the European project, so we EU opponents can make use of social media to expose once again how taxpayers across Europe are being compelled to fund their own brainwashing.

A Freedom of Information request has been submitted in an effort to identify which UK local authorities and public bodies had employees at EuroPCom 2011.  From there we will attempt to discover whether public funds have been used to register and send participants to Brussels for the workshops, and if so, how much.  Then where applicable we will try to find out who took the decision to authorise that spending on enhancing local EU propaganda and see which of those people are accountable to the public they are supposed to serve.

It will take some weeks, but watch this space.

Prof Jones’ BBC science review continues to crumble

Readers may remember the recent furore caused by the findings of an ‘independent review’ of the impartiality and accuracy of BBC science coverage commissioned for the BBC Trust.  The story was covered on this blog as we pointed out the evident flaws with the reviewer and the review itself.

The review was conducted by a regular BBC guest and broadcaster – more BBC impartiality for you – the ‘genetics professor’ Prof Steve Jones.  The BBC choose to describe Jones by his discipline, yet choose to play down that his genetics specialism is the snail. Perhaps it doesn’t sound as grand when put that way, so best to leave it out – easy for the masters of omission at the Beeb.

While Jones may be feted by some in the media for his ‘exceptional writing skills’ it seems there are some major flaws in his use of evidence and citation, which should be a matter of concern for a scientist.  Perhaps Jones should have had peer-review process…  As Harmless Sky brings to public attention, the BBC Trust has been forced to publish a ‘Clarification’ in which it has had to amend a passage in the review.  As always it seems ‘correction’ is the hardest word at the BBC and admission of error must be avoided at any costs.  The BBC Trust expains the problem:

On 8 August 2011 the Trust published an updated version of Professor Steve Jones’ independent review of the accuracy and impartiality of the BBC’s science coverage due to an ambiguity in the section on climate change. This reference was in the section on pages 71-72, immediately before Professor Jones discussed statements about climate change contained in two BBC programmes.

The Trust and Professor Jones now recognise that the passage as originally published could be interpreted as attributing statements made in those two programmes to Lord Lawson or to Lord Monckton.  Neither programme specifically featured Lord Lawson or Lord Monckton and it was not Professor Jones’ intention to suggest that this was the case. Professor Jones has apologised for the lack of clarity in this section of his assessment, which has now been amended.

Typical weasel words constructed by the PR department.  Suggesting the passage ‘could be interpreted as attributing statements’ and that there was merely a lack of clarity is absolute nonsense.  The passage clearly attributed statements, exactly as intended.

It was not a clarification required from Jones, it was a correction, and that is what has been made. Harmless Sky carries the ‘before’ and ‘after’ passages for ease of comparison which show up the intentionally misleading statement by the BBC for what it is.  As Tony, the author of Harmless Sky goes on to point out:

One can well understand why Lords Lawson and Monckton would have been a bit miffed. I sincerely hope that someone at the BBC Trust had the grace to blush and apologise, but the ‘clarification’ they’ve provided sounds rather graceless and grudging. Perhaps its a bit difficult to face up to the fact that you’ve published a review of accuracy costing £140,000 which is not only inaccurate but probably libellous too.

The estimable Bishop Hill, who has given this story the CO2 oxygen of publicity, adds an important note about the Professor Jones’ evident relativism which demonstrates the lack of rigour applied in what amounts to a BBC hatchet job of its critics on the subject of climate change/global warming:

But even if we accept that the rise is all caused by man, it is instructive to observe the outrage with which Prof Jones greets a true (but incomplete) statement from Johnny Ball and then note his silence on say the Horizon programme in which incorrect statements were made about the relative contributions of mankind and volcanos to the atmosphere.

It is instructive indeed.  The message from Professor Steve Jones is clear, you don’t have to be right as long as you’re part of the majority, the consensus if you will.  You can get a pass for just about anything as long as you say what those holding the purse strings, and the keys to the broadcasting studio, want to hear.

At least one good thing has come from this farcical story – Jones has managed to torpedo his own credibility with independent thinkers, and people who examine evidence rather than accept lofty claims at face value.  Long may that continue until facts replace increasingly flawed hypotheses.

Just rename BBC Newsnight to BBC Propagandanight

A regular AM reader emails about They Who Must Not Be Named:

‘AM, No mention on BBC News at 10 of which newspaper the arrested police officer was passing information to. No mention on Newsnight even of the arrest of the police officer!!! Unbefuckinglievable.’

Quite.

Odd one out? The insipid, biased BBC

David Leigh is the Guardian’s investigations executive editor.  He is now the subject of an investigation after the Guido Fawkes blog double sourced accusations that Leigh had admitted some years ago to engaging in ‘phone hacking’.

When Harry Cole asked Leigh about his ‘phone hacking’ activities, Leigh denied it.  This is because Leigh is a liar.

If David Leigh can lie about this after making a written, public admission of criminal behaviour, what else has Leigh lied about?  The veil is being drawn back and now Leigh and his Guardian cronies are going to come under intense scrutiny – and this blog will be reminding people in the coming days of other David Leigh activities that he has denied despite evidence.

The Guardian, with its uniquely smug air of self satisfied arrogance, has eagerly pursued its agenda to undermine News International as part of the effort to stop Rupert Murdoch regaining full control of British Sky Broadcasting. That effort has been driven by a desire to protect the BBC’s utter dominance over the dissemination of news in the UK and significant presence overseas, and it has seen key members of the Guardian – including editor Alan Rusbridger – strutting around TV and radio studios to pontificate about ‘phone hacking’ outrageous.

Needless to say, other news media outlets around the world are thoroughly enjoying the delicious irony of The Guardian being put under the microscope for the very crime it has spent years pushing to the front of the news agenda, as some of the headlines reveal from a Google search.  But there is one glaring omission from the international cast of media outlets covering the story…

The BBC. (Important edit: Although the BBC did refer to Leigh’s hacking activity in piece back in April, since Leigh’s denial being reported globally it has gone very quiet)

As you can see, the BBC does not mention David Leigh in any news story anywhere on its site today, and has not done so in the past week.  And a search of the BBC site using its own internal search engine reveals the same resolute refusal to cover a story that is being reported from Australia to the United States:

This reinforces our condemnation of the BBC for outrageous bias, only selecting news stories that support the BBC’s worldview or agendas.  And one of the BBC’s agendas is presenting its close friends at The Guardian as trustworthy, authoritative and reliable.

This omission of the story, which is damaging to David Leigh and The Guardian, is not the BBC turning its attention away from ‘phone hacking’.  We have ample evidence this bias by omission in a deliberate effort by the BBC to keep its audience in ignorance of inconvenient news and information.  This is an utter corruption of the BBC’s public service remit.

At the time of writing, in the last 24 hours Google shows BBC News has published no less than 8 stories related to its obsessive coverage of the ‘phone hacking’ scandal.  This screen capture shows them:

The BBC’s relationship with The Guardian is an incestuous union devoted to the pursuit of an illiberal-left agenda, funded by taxpayers’ money.  BBC News is nothing more than a propaganda outlet that puts its own interests before its obligation to report news honestly and impartially. This is their idea of honest and transparent media.

Thus the BBC treats the British public with contempt, taking our money and using it to distort the news while behaving as an activist, advancing views and theories without any semblance of impartiality.  As such it is our duty to resist this corruption and work towards the destruction of BBC News.

The real reason for the Guardian-BBC assault on News International

The churnalists are up in arms.  The carefully constructed media narrative has it that the News of the World, and by extension the entire Rupert Murdoch empire, has singlehandedly ruined the reputation of journalism.

We are witnessing manipulation par excellence at play, as reports that personal details of families of war dead and serious crime victims were found in the possession of Glenn Mulcaire are spun to suggest their phone messages were intercepted – despite there being no evidence (as yet) that such actions happened.  Emotions are running wild and large tracts of the British public are being herded like sheep into a mind numbing mantra against not just those who may be responsible at the News of the World, but also its owner and his future business ambitions.

Make no mistake, I carry no brief for Murdoch.  But I cannot stand seeing the British people being misled by his opportunist opponents who have a self serving agenda that is not in the interest of the public.

The hypocrisy and double standards at play here are incredible.  The Guardian has not pursued this story for the noble aim of getting at the truth, but in a desperate effort to undermine Rupert Murdoch, with the full connivance of its broadcast arm, the BBC.  The phone hacking scandal, while criminal and disgusting, is nothing more than a rider for a campaign where something far greater is at stake – maintaining the left-liberal media consensus that holds sway in this country, ably laid bare by this 2009 column by Stephen Glover in the Mail in which he refers to this ‘intellectual tyranny’.

There is a cosy left leaning consensus in the UK media which sees reporters easily slip from the BBC to Channel 4 to ITV because they are all members of the same exclusive club.  It is the same in the newspaper broadsheets, Guardian journalists are just as comfortable at the Telegraph and there is interchange between them despite the supposed politically partisan nature of two organs.  The reality is the UK television media is not only part of the establishment, it is grouped firmly on the left.

There is no right-leaning television counterbalance to the output in this country.  But as Fox News in the US has shown, reporting of stories from a small ‘c’ conservative perspective puts a very different gloss on things and offers viewers an alternative to the media discourse broadcast on the established channels.  Fox is routinely sullied by the leftists, but it appeals to a significant audience that is no longer forced to rely on CNN or MSNBC’s liberal output, and as such it has become the dominant cable news network in the United States.

Imagine if such an alternative was to emerge in the UK, an alternative that resonates with ordinary people who can see the bias but whose only choice is to listen in or hit the off button. Sky News has the capacity to become that kind of news outlet if it is wholly owned by a conservative – even though Sky would have to spin off the channel from the rest of the BSkyB group.  Sky itself could play host to current affairs and documentaries coming from a conservative viewpoint.   The BBC don’t want that and the Guardian, which influences so much BBC output, doesn’t want that either.  Which is why the phone hacking issue has been transformed by the Guardian and BBC into the campaign it really is – stop Murdoch from owning Sky.

The cynicism is sickening, but the stakes are the highest.  This is about exerting influence over the British people.  The propaganda broadcast on any number of issues, from climate change to public spending, is designed to underpin the ‘progressive’ agenda.  That influence will weaken if a conservative leaning alternative is available for viewers to choose.  Love him or hate him, Murdoch has the capacity to deliver that alternative which is why he is being assailed.

In the US the other media spend an inordinate amount of time attacking Fox because they recognise it as a threat to their influence.  Viewers are not being served an exclusively diet left-liberal menu which omits stories or information from a conservative viewpoint.  Here in the UK we now see the media attacking Murdoch because they see him as a threat to the British people continuing to be served the current diet of left-liberal output.  But it was not always the case.  Indeed there was no outcry against Murdoch in 1989 when Sky News was the only exclusive news channel in the UK.  A trawl of the Guardian’s archives doesn’t throw up a single article criticising Sky when it was wholly owned by Murdoch in its early years.  There was nothing suggesting Sky was partial and certainly nothing about media plurality.  Perhaps that is because Fox was still seven years away had yet to make its breakthrough and challenge the consensus which up to then had felt unassailable.

In 1990 the left-liberal tactic of refusing to provide a spread of facts and opinions was finally challenged by the Broadcasting Bill which pushed the concept of ‘due impartiality’.  What could be less benign than ensuring broadcasters are impartial?  Clearly there was something because the Guardian railed against it and even called for due impartiality to be scrapped altogether – and when it passed Labour vowed to repeal it.

How things changed by 2003…

You couldn’t make it up, could you?

Sensing how Murdoch’s plans for Sky News could break the stranglehold of the left-liberal media consensus, we now see the Guardian championing due impartiality and using it as justification for rejecting Murdoch’s attempt to re-take control of Sky.  However Murdoch wrong footed them by stating he would abide by due impartiality.  This is when the Guardian and its leftist allies seized upon the notion of media plurality, arguing that the power to influence opinion and shape public debate must be in the hands of a diverse range of organisations that compete with each other.

Ironically Murdoch would actually add to media plurality because as we have seen, BBC, Channel 4 and ITV all sing from the same hymnsheet.  But plurality is not the issue, for the left it is all about maintaining their dominance and biased news selection and broadcast and ability to exclude or omit news, facts or opinions that undermine their ‘progressive’ agenda.  We know they do this because Labour’s Ivan Lewis, writing in the Guardian, confirmed it when he said:

While News Corp asserts that Britain’s impartiality rules mean Sky News could never adopt a political agenda akin to Fox News, there remains a real concern about the selection of news, which in itself can significantly distort coverage.

Heaven forbid some other media player should use the same techniques employed by the BBC and others to distort coverage the other way.  They know full well that even under the ‘due impartiality’ laws, a Sky News with a genuinely conservative management and staff will have no problem whatsoever in justifying the broadcast of endless genuine news stories that favour the conservative perspective.  Which is why Lewis was pleading for former Labour man Vince Cable to refer Murdoch takeover bid for Sky to Ofcom.  You know, Ofcom, that ‘independent’ media regulator that could not possibly do anything other than make an impartial decision…

For the Guardian-BBC axis, Murdoch represents a clear and present danger to their grip on national thought.  Therefore their objective is to create such widespread hostility to News International that it will become simply impossible, politically, for the Competition Commission to allow Murdoch’s plans to go through – and politically impossible for the Secretary of State to do anything about it.

This is the reason for the saturation coverage of the phone hacking story.  This is the reason for the rabble rousing and concerted effort to play to people’s emotions.  It is inconceivable that the Guardian, Mirror Group, Mail, Star et al, have not behaved in similarly appalling fashion to dredge up stories.  But as we have seen the Guardian and BBC are maintaining a tightly focused campaign to undermine Murdoch and resisting all efforts to widen enquiries into journalistic practices in general.

Perhaps some people will finally read between the lines, consider the history to this spat, and see the Guardian and BBC’s campaign for what it is.  That doesn’t mean letting journalists and editors from the News of the World get away with illegal and intrusive actions, but recognising there is something much more vital at stake, control of the messages broadcast to the public.

Update: John Coles in the comments sums it up when he says: ‘Phone hacking is a disgrace but these events must not end in the stifling supremacy of the liberal-left media.’  That is their desired endgame and that is the point of this post in a nutshell.  It is exactly the reason this issue is being covered so disproportionately why stories of far greater importance and relevance are being shunted out of sight. Whose interests are they serving?


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