Fake News, Criminalized

MI6 Chief Says Fake News And Online Propaganda Are A Threat To Democracy … The chief of MI6 has said he is deeply concerned by the threat posed by rival countries attempting to undermine democracy through propaganda and cyberattacks. -Buzzfeed

The next step in attacking the alternative media is to criminalize it.

Right now the alternative media is under attack in Europe for “hate speech” and (potentially) terrorism. In the US, the alternative media is being accused of presenting Russian propaganda. Earlier today, this approach was taken up by British intel (see above).

In the US, there are Congressional attempts underway to provide funds for law enforcement to investigate alternative news sites as supporters of Russian propaganda. But so far there have been no major statements from US federal law enforcement officials. Now, however, we have one from Britain - as the head of MI6 has spoken up.

Since Western alternative media is simply an outgrowth – an expression – of discontent with the current system, those producing it cannot ultimately be seen as tools of Russian propaganda. However, alternative media is proving deeply disconcerting to the larger Western power structure. For this reason, suspicions of Russian propaganda merely provide a justification for investigation. One an investigation has been pursued, it may not stop until something – anything – is found that can be construed as criminal or at least problematic.

In this way alternative media can be first criminalized and then hounded. Or so the plan goes …

More:

Alex Younger, aka “C”, used a rare public speech to say he was deeply concerned about the risks posed by hybrid warfare, where countries take advantage of the internet to “further their aims deniably” through “means as varied as cyberattacks, propaganda, or subversion of democratic process”.

Although he did not name Russia directly, the comments come following accusations that the Kremlin has attempted to influence elections in the US and Europe using underhand tactics ranging from undeclared direct funding, to hacking emails, to spreading fake news.

“Our job is to give the government the information advantage; to shine a light on these activities and to help our country and allies, in particular across Europe, build the resilience they need to protect themselves,” Younger said. “The risks at stake are profound and represent a fundamental threat to our sovereignty; they should be a concern to all those who share democratic values.”

In fact, what is being planned is not going to work. It will likely make life miserable for certain reporters and others associated with the alternative media. But it is far too early for the powers-that-be to stamp out alternative journalism (and the thinking behind it) no matter how much they wish to.

For one thing, alternative journalism is now representative of a larger mindset among tens and even hundreds of millions of people, especially in the West. Thus it will take at least a full generation to wipe out new perspectives and rediscovered information.

Second, because the news is representative of people’s points of view (rather than vice-versa) alternative media insights and information will continue to be presented in various ways – on the  Internet as well, only not so obviously.

Finally, the growing war against the alternative media will only reinforce its relevance and credibility, thus causing more people to become informed (or deepen their perceptions) about the issues presented in the so-called alternative media.

There is a whole alternative culture that is offered by modern alternative media. Some of it may be leftist but the initial approach – for those who have tracked its emergence on the ‘Net – was basically libertarian and freedom-oriented.

Even today this specific cultural approach informs a lot of alternative reporting. The fundamental ideas is that the market itself should make determinations regarding human interactions rather than government run by groups of people with greater or lesser competence.

This approach is rooted in free-market – Austrian – economic theory which is actually accepted throughout mainstream economics. It begins with marginal utility, the idea that credible prices can only be generated by marketplace competition. But its insights are much broader.

If everyone in formal academic economics including Keynesians accept the reality of marginal utility (as they do) then how can such massive governments exists, passing thousands of laws, rules and regulations – all of which are essentially price fixes? Shouldn’t human behavior be moderated by competition instead whenever possible?

The same goes for central banking. It contravenes fundamental economic logic. Ask almost anyone in banking of economics (on the left or right) if they believe in marginal utility and the answer will be “yes.” Ask anyone if they believe price-fixing is effective or productive and they will answer “no.”

And yet central banking is a form of price fixing and so is government. Western society exists in a bubble of cognitive dissonance. What is accepted academically is not applied in reality.

And thus freedom – and libertarianism – cannot be attacked logically. Instead, false arguments will be created to damp down the alternative media.

But as pointed out above, it is not going to be simple or easy to remove fundamental truths from the body politic. The last time we witnessed this kind of paradigm was after the invention of the Gutenberg press that blew open societies throughout the West and helped create the New World and then the republic of “these United States.”

It took about 500 years for control of society to be re-established from the top down by certain historical groups ... and yet here we are again. The same sort of technological undermining has taken place and it won’t be easily repressed.

It may not take another 450 years but it certainly won’t happen in 10 or 20. And by the time it does take place it is certainly possible that another information revolution will have come to pass.

Time and history are working against authoritarianism and not with it. Depriving people of knowledge and history is a signature of repression. But in the current technological era it becomes more and more difficult.

What is pending is period of chaos and difficulty. But over the next century we may see an efflorescence of the sort that took place after the Gutenberg press with the expansion of the Renaissance and the advent of the Enlightenment and the rediscovery of scientific thinking.

Conclusion: Things may indeed change. But not necessarily in the way controllers imagine.

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