WILLIAM I ROBINSON—Contrary to mainstream accounts, the coronavirus pandemic did not cause the crisis of global capitalism, for this was already upon us. On the eve of the pandemic, growth in the EU countries had already shrunk to zero, much of Latin America and sub-Sahara Africa was in recession, growth rates in Asia were steadily declining, and North America faced a slowdown. The writing was on the wall. The contagion was but the spark that ignited the combustible of a global economy that never fully recovered from the 2008 financial collapse and had been teetering on the brink of renewed crisis ever since.
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CAITLIN JOHNSTONE—It’s hard to blame people for believing dumb conspiracy theories about the powerful, considering the fact that proven conspiracies by the powerful are usually a lot worse. The conspiracy of the US power alliance to slaughter children in Yemen and lie about it is far worse than all the QAnon stuff, for example.
Corporate media propaganda is another example. Wealthy elites and government agencies are indeed conspiring to manipulate the thoughts of the entire population; this is a fact that has been studied and documented for decades. It happens in a mundane way, but it’s a huge, creepy conspiracy. I mean, just think about it: powerful elites are engaging in mass-scale mind control to justify murder and genocide around the world. This is a fact. The only reason it doesn’t give people the thrill of 5G nanobot mind control conspiracies or whatever is because we’re used to it.
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Rabi added that Israel is almost paralyzed when the Iranian ships sail in the Mediterranean on their way to Syria after crossing the Suez canal because, “the rules of the game at sea are different. What was achievable when Israel operated against the ground and air shipments of weapons from Iran to Syria is not valid when the action is at sea, under a Russian umbrella.”
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CAITLIN JOHNSTONE—This isn’t Operation Mockingbird. It’s so much worse. Operation Mockingbird was the CIA doing something to the media. What we are seeing now is the CIA openly acting as the media. Any separation between the CIA and the news media, indeed even any pretence of separation, has been dropped. This is bad. This is very, very bad. Democracy has no meaningful existence if people’s votes are cast without a clear understanding of what’s happening in their nation and their world. When their understanding is being shaped to suit the agendas of the very government they’re meant to be influencing with their votes, what you have is the most powerful military and economic force in the history of civilization with no accountability to the electorate whatsoever.
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GLENN GREENWALD–ver the course of five-plus hours on Thursday, a House Committee along with two subcommittees badgered three tech CEOs, repeatedly demanding that they censor more political content from their platforms and vowing legislative retaliation if they fail to comply. The hearing — convened by the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Chair Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ), and the two Chairs of its Subcommittees, Mike Doyle (D-PA) and Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) — was one of the most stunning displays of the growing authoritarian effort in Congress to commandeer the control which these companies wield over political discourse for their own political interests and purposes.