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The story of how America became an empire is one where a group of ambitious and egotistical men rationalized implementing a governing model which would lead to massive death and suffering. Its main forerunner was Theodore Roosevelt, a narcissistic politician from an upper-class household who was determined to turn his childhood obsession with war into a foreign policy model which would make the United States into a conquering nation. He and the other political elites who supported the Spanish-American War and the subsequent rush to empire received support from William Randolph Hearst, the businessman who used his vast newspaper network to manufacture public opinion for war because war stories would help him sell papers better than the lurid gossip that he otherwise used to gain the public’s attention.
I’m very grateful for the fact that my ideological development as a socialist has lead me towards the principled anti-imperialist worldview which informs my opposition to the project for colonialist insurrection in Hong Kong. I could easily have gone in the opposite direction; for a while, I routinely sought out the authority of the World Socialist Website, the Trotskyist publication that’s given very sympathetic coverage to the anti-Beijing protesters. But my views on Hong Kong have developed the opposite way that the U.S. empire and its narrative enforcers in outlets like the WSWS have tried to steer me towards.
The American ruling class decided that it would be necessary to start a 21st century cold war with Russia and China when it became apparent that U.S. global hegemony was being replaced by a multipolar world. And even before this new level of warfare became the priority, it was apparent that a long-term era of tensions between great powers would require much greater government control over information than was previously the case.
David Swanson gave this keynote address to a gathering of peace activists at the annual Ground Zero Hiroshima/Nagasaki Weekend marking the 74th Anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki Atomic Bombing. The Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action in Poulsbo WA was established in 1977, just as the Bangor Trident Submarine Base was being built, and sits on land directly adjacent to the base. The actual keynote title was: “The Myths, the Silence, and the Propaganda That Keep Nuclear Weapons in Existence.”
On Contact host Chris Hedges and investigative journalist Mohamed Elmazzi discuss documents showing an alleged British government-financed propaganda mill, equivalent in scale to the CIA’s Operation Mockingbird psychological operations. Elmazzi’s work can be found at TheInterregnum.net.
Every government on earth, beginning with the United States, should shut down and be done with secret agencies, spy agencies, agencies used for murder, torture, bribery, election-manipulation, and coups.
“Nothing appears more surprising to those who consider human affairs with a philosophical eye, than the easiness with which the many are governed by the few; and the implicit submission, with which men resign their own sentiments and passions to those of their rulers.” — David Hume, “Of the First Principles of Government”, 1768.
Two months ago, I heard a story. You heard it too, if you went anywhere near a television or a newspaper in the United States. The government of Venezuela needed to be overthrown because it wouldn’t allow in humanitarian aid.
Rachel Maddow smugly tweeted “death by algorithm” with a link to a recent Washington Post article lamenting that an Aaron Maté interview conducted by Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Chris Hedges, host of RT America’s “On Contact,” was recommended to people in the wake of the Mueller Report. Hedges joins Rick Sanchez to respond to Maddow’s latest conspiratorial spasm. He argues that she “functions to keep viewers glued to the set” and that her claims “aren’t tied to any verifiable reality.”