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As Media Credibility Dies, Obama Announces War on Free Press

October 20, 2016

By Paul Homewood




From The New American:


Expressing nostalgia for the days when just three establishment-controlled propaganda organs dominated the public narrative, President Obama lashed out at what he called the “wild, wild west” media landscape that allows non-establishment voices and viewpoints to be heard. Claiming that “censorship” would not be the answer, Obama called for Americans to submit to a vaguely defined (presumably government-run) “curating function” that would help “discard” unapproved information. Critics, though, warned that an increasingly desperate establishment was plotting all-out war on freedom of the press and the free Internet.

Speaking at an innovation conference in Pittsburgh last week, Obama called for what analysts said sounded like a government crackdown on free speech and online freedom. “We are going to have to rebuild within this wild-wild-west-of-information flow some sort of curating function that people agree to,” he argued, expressing concerns about “conspiracy theorists” and skeptics of the man-made global-warming theory having a platform. Other senior Obama officials, including former “regulatory czar” Cass Sunstein, have even proposed a government “ban” on conspiracy theorizing.

Praising the days when just three TV channels dominated the news and people still “generally” trusted their propaganda, Obama, implying Americans are too dumb to sort truth from lies without government help, said something had to be done about the free flow of information. “There has to be, I think, some sort of way in which we can sort through information that passes some basic truthiness tests and those that we have to discard, because they just don’t have any basis in anything that’s actually happening in the world,” Obama claimed. Apparently he was not referring to the establishment media-created alternate reality that is increasingly falling on deaf ears. Ironically, though, Obama has openly boasted about lying to the American people.

While short on details and how his scheming would square with the Constitution’s First Amendment, Obama’s comments sounded suspiciously totalitarian. “That is hard to do, but I think it’s going to be necessary, it’s going to be possible,” he said at the summit, without giving details on just how it would be done, much less how it would be done constitutionally. “The answer is obviously not censorship, but it’s creating places where people can say ‘this is reliable’ and I’m still able to argue safely about facts and what we should do about it.”

Some have speculated that Obama wants to create a government-run media organ, though that would probably have even less credibility than the government or the establishment media do now. Other analysts suggested that, despite the denial, censorship is exactly what Obama and the establishment have in mind. In the European Union, it is already well underway, with help from America’s biggest technology companies. Essentially, it sounded like Obama was calling for the establishment to set the acceptable parameters of debate, and then tolerate any views within the establishment-approved box while silencing any others. 

“The way I would like to see us operate is, yes, significant debate and contentious debate, but where we are operating on the same basic platform, same basic rules, on how do we determine what’s true and what’s not,” Obama continued. “Everything on the internet looks like it might be true. And so in this political season, we’ve seen — you just say stuff. And so everything suddenly becomes contested. That I do not think is good for democracy, and it’s certainly not good for science, for progress, for government, for fixing systems.” Of course, America is a republic, but that is besides the point.


Read the full article here.

  1. October 20, 2016 9:59 am

    Paul, your blog here is a major part of the insurgency against the mainstream media, and its unthinking or deliberate support of climate and energy propaganda, one of only a few sites I can trust to provide a sceptical slant on the news.

  2. RAH permalink
    October 20, 2016 10:20 am

    The three fundamental boxes of Liberty
    The Soap Box
    The Ballot Box
    The Cartridge Box

    There is more than one reason why Obama’s two terms have seen the greatest jump in firearms sales in US history. And thus Hillary’s recent rant on “Gun Control”.

    • A C Osborn permalink
      October 20, 2016 11:20 am

      Yes, the biggest sale of course being to the Homeland Security Dept.
      I wonder why that is?

      • RAH permalink
        October 20, 2016 11:30 am

        I was referring to sales to private citizens. Not police or security agencies or the US military.

      • catweazle666 permalink
        October 20, 2016 9:23 pm

        Perhaps ammunition has a ‘best before’ date and they replace all of it at once?

      • October 21, 2016 2:07 pm

        Nah, they had to replace the stuff they sold to the Mexican Drug lords.

      • RAH permalink
        October 20, 2016 10:31 pm

        One of my older firearms is a Lee Enfield SMLE Mk III manufactured in 1918. Chambered for .303. Complete with the long sword type bayonet with scabbard but missing the sling. Believe it saw service in both World wars. Still shoots great.

        Another is a CZ 38 automatic with German horse hide holster having two pips on the flap denoting it belonged to a Oberleutnant. It was a war prize brought home by an uncle.

        Both completely serviceable.

  3. NeilC permalink
    October 20, 2016 10:27 am

    The First Amendment (Amendment I) to the United States Constitution prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion, ensuring that there is no prohibition on the free exercise of religion, abridging the freedom of speech, infringing on the freedom of the press, interfering with the right to peaceably assemble, or prohibiting the petitioning for a governmental redress of grievances. It was adopted on December 15, 1791, as one of the ten amendments that constitute the Bill of Rights.

    From wikipedia:

    What else have Obama and Clinton got up their sleeves to abolish free speech?

  4. rwoollaston permalink
    October 20, 2016 11:56 am

    Welcome to the USSA!

  5. October 20, 2016 12:01 pm

    Obama is a prime example of what you get when those who listened to the “old” media elected a Marxist follower of Saul Alinsky. To boot he is a Narcissist with extremely thin skin, but big ears. And as a bonus, he hates the United States.

    The first inclination of both Obama and Hillary Clinton is to lie. The old media backs them to the hilt. Every time they open their mouths to criticize the new media, I am reminded more and more of my visit to the former Soviet Union in 1974.

  6. Gerry, England permalink
    October 20, 2016 12:42 pm

    Rule number one of the left – be a hypocrite. And was he looking in a mirror when he suggested that there are people too stupid to sort the fact from the fiction?

    The growth of blogs is because the legacy media are getting worse and worse. By design, or probably more due to laziness and cost cutting, they are becoming more aligned with the ruling elite. Instead of taking the time and effort to research stories they take the easy route of a few quotes and a press release.

    This proposed action shows that they realize the power of the internet and that unlike the legacy media, they have no way of exerting control or influence over it. The prospect of the people becoming educated scares them.

  7. October 20, 2016 12:46 pm

    One way it could be done is to give approved media outlets a kind of ‘quality’ rating that it would be hard for those outside to achieve and keep. It doesn’t even have to be directly run by the government, although the government will see that the system gets set up and promoted as a ‘gold standard’ for the media. Those that didn’t get the rating could be derided and marginalised.

    If that sounds far-fetched, we have in Europe a major precedent: what was called in UK BS5750 and is now ISO9000 – which is a “quality” system. It actually has very little to do with quality, and a great deal to do with spending a heck of a lot of time on fruitless paperwork. It started off in engineering but now encompasses anybody from schools to employment agencies and universities to corner shops. Although in the early days you could actually certify your own company, you now have to employ highly paid outside consultants (who mostly know zilch about your industry but know how to work the system) who will hold your hand while you develop your ‘quality’ systems and then give you a certificate to say you have ‘quality’. It has been rolled out Europe-wide and, although there is no legal compulsion, you’ll find increasingly that governmental organisations and not a few larger private companies will demand that you have this ‘quality’ or you will be prohibited from dealing with them. It’s happening. It militates heavily against independents and smaller companies and is a major, major problem for lovers of the free market like me.

    A measure of control and uniformity is thus achieved without direct primary legislation. It would seem relatively simple for those who pull the strings to use this kind of thing against a free press, and I expect moves WILL be made in that direction.

    • Ron Arnett permalink
      October 20, 2016 2:19 pm

      Next step.

      After receiving a putative gold standard rating for your output from your publication or distribution system, it qualifies for:

      Legal protection extended to media as current interpretations of the various constitutions provide.

      Preferred status at financial agencies

      Preferred status at insurance agencies

      assignment of acceptable status for distribution at all government agencies including those regulated or financed by the government such as universities, contractors, service providers.

      Access to information from the above as such as press conferences, court proceedings, government media departments etc.

      All of the above, voluntarily applied by all major private institutions such as corporations, charities etc.

      Non gold standard media will be entitled to none of the above. Plus they will be subjected to regular hate sessions organized by the government in coordination with the established media.

      You don’t have to necessarily pass a law to control the media. There just has to be a widespread acceptance of the notion that the government can and should determine what is legitimate _news._

  8. October 20, 2016 1:03 pm

    The very reason a free press is codified in the US Constitution is because of tin plated dictators like Obama.

  9. October 20, 2016 1:10 pm

    A guy that does not understand the concept of america is the president of america.

  10. TonyM permalink
    October 20, 2016 1:19 pm

    The totalitarian has spoken and once again revealed his true red color. That a U.S. President would so blatantly argue against free speech is unnerving. When will we be sent to the re-education camps to rid ourselves of the horrible idea of freedom?

  11. October 20, 2016 3:57 pm

    I have just had a junk email — not, for a change, offering to cure my (non-existent) diabetes or provide me with a f**kbuddy (always spelt that way for some reason!) — but telling me of Obama’s plan, accidentally leaked by the White House, to cancel the presidential election.
    I know that Obama is the closest thing to a dictator the US has had in a couple of centuries and that he is probably a Class 1 Opportunist and a bigger liar than Nixon but I presume even he isn’t really planning to go that far!

  12. Athelstan permalink
    October 20, 2016 6:00 pm

    Eight long years of Obarmyness hit America, Billary wants to continue the rot and rotten she is. to her very black core. Anyone who learned his trade ‘community organizer’ read agitator……….Daley’s Chicago thus Obarmy is as bent as a hairpin. A geek with a chip on both shoulders but to the manor born is he, where do as I say not as I do is the rules. Obama, a typical Socialist authoritarian but what a gob he has, they love him in Westminster probably because he hates Britain as much as the UK establishment does.

    During his first few months on the White House lawn, Dicky Head – Obama said some very worrying things after his inauguration, not least pontificating on the great warming scam and musing that, “my kids had gotten him into it” [more likely he meant, the other half twisted his arm and halfwit Prez wannabe – Michelle] – or something to that effect.

    Well he Obambam transmogrified world [illiberal] politics, along with the political manipulators bar none Goldman Sackfuls, Soros and his billionaire mates gerrymandering and slush funds galore for ‘liberals’ two major headaches were summarily removed. In Canada [Trudeau removed Harper] and in Australia [Malcolm GS alumnus Turnbull stabbed Abbot in the back] to chisel his ‘world climate change agreement’ – what earth lifting he did bring about what a farce [China and India – do nothing]… and world farce at that!

    Oh yes, Obummer got his way but not without saving his bacon in the good ole USofA – and that came about because of the fossil fuel bonanza in America a Shale gas/oil revolution which more than halved energy prices in the states and enabled Obarmy to grow the economy and to sever the link with the Saudis – [the Saudis……about which I must say, I heartily approved of].

    Fossil fuels saved the Obummer presidency………………..but not America: ironic huh?

  13. October 20, 2016 6:35 pm

    I’ll repeat the comment I made yesterday
    You saw the recent hardcore Milo video on why LeftMob media close-down comments
    “Media companies closing their comment sections they claim oh it’s trolling, it’s abuse and harassment. No it’s F*king not ! It’s cos, everybody hates you and You Lie !

    There’s 2 options for them
    “#1 Ask yourself if you’ve got something wrong ?”
    or #2 Say “the internet is full of racist trolls”
    ..Stuck in their bubbleworld they go for #2

  14. October 20, 2016 6:46 pm

    Whereas is the US and in England media have become tribal and only report LeftMob certain that SJW way is the one true way
    – Giving certain Pet-issue stories legs : Calais, Ched Evans, ProjectStopTrump etc.
    – While burying others in the bottom drawer : Rotherham Child Abuse

    In Scotland the SNP have become the default one party state, so are able to use media licence laws to get big media to kowtow

    Spectator today claims : now SNP has power dominance, it holds the media reigns of power thru media licences and the media have become compliant
    eg STV political commer guy didn’t support SNP ..SNP whipped up a twitter army..STV took the easy way an took his job
    BBC and NUJ stood by and let it happen.

  15. October 20, 2016 7:14 pm

    Obama said “And so everything suddenly becomes contested.”

    I say in free speech (this is America after all) everything is contestABLE.
    It’s up to asserters to answer back by showing their assertions are ROBUST.

  16. October 20, 2016 8:42 pm

    Heard of Project Veritas and <a href=" O'Keefe's video on Democrat dirty tricks ?
    OK “this is banned by the Mainstream Media” is a good line for a Trump supporter to use
    but a viral* investigative reporter , saying he’s exposing on camera genuine Democrat staff instructing people how to vote fraudulently and do other dark PR stuff, begins his new video by saying “our last video went viral, and all the networks contacted us to cover us …and now suddenly they won’t cover us , cos they are too afraid of being locked out by a future Hillary administration.

    \\Since the video: Bob Creamer ( a close associate of Obama) and Scott Foval have been sacked.

    The DNC has not acknowledged the video nor denied the video, even CNN has reported on this video.

    The video has had nearly 3m views, I missed it on BBC trending. Surely such an important subject with 3 million views should be mentioned in any ‘rigging’ accusations.
    3 hours ago – on Twitter
    We woke up to find out that @YouTube banned this recent video. Good thing we had another copy on Facebook:… #tcot //
    * Hmm 3m isn’t a huge amount ..and it seems back on Youtube

  17. Andy DC permalink
    October 20, 2016 11:00 pm

    In the old Soviet Union, there was a Government run “organ” that unilaterally determined what “news” was acceptable and what “news” was not. It was called Pravda.

    Likewise in Nazi Germany, there was a “Minister of Propaganda” named Joseph Goebbles, who also unilaterally determined what “news” was acceptable and what “news” was not. He even had the power to determine who was “deplorable” (Jews). So it is not exactly anything new that Obama is proposing.

  18. Graeme No.3 permalink
    October 21, 2016 5:08 am

    Re the loss of credibility:
    Soviet Russia had two main newspapers, Pravda which means “Truth”, was the official voice of the Communist Party and Izvestia, which means “News”, was the Official voice of the Soviet Government.
    Old russian joke(?) “There is no Pravda in Izvestia, and there is no Izvestia in Pravda”.
    Now that people have a choice their combined circulation has shrunk to 2.5% of their previous glory.
    Sic transit Washington Post et al.

  19. Peter MacFarlane permalink
    October 21, 2016 6:41 am

    Please tell us this article is some sort of clever sarcastic double-bluff designed as a frightener.

    Because if it’s real it is beyond frightening.

  20. October 21, 2016 11:02 am

    Sounds like Orwell’s Ministry of Truth i.e. the propaganda ministry.

    ‘The book describes the doctoring of historical records to show a government-approved version of events.’

    No thanks.

  21. October 21, 2016 11:50 am

    Spot the Freudian slip in the Obama end quote :
    “so everything suddenly becomes contested. That I do not think is good for democracy, and it’s certainly not good for science, for progress, for government, for **fixing** systems.”

  22. Archetype permalink
    October 21, 2016 7:18 pm

    Reblogged this on The Road to Revelation and commented:
    Enlightening and informative article shedding light on the piece of shit on the WH and the entire National Socialist government. They are up to destroying the Bill of Rights, as usual…

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