The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry

Pentagon’s new “laws of war” legalise killing of inconvenient journalists

exclamation-see-no-evilPentagon Legalizes Killing Journalists As ‘Law Of War’

The new “laws of war” were released as part of a book of instructions on legitimate warfare practices approved by the United States military.
By M. David for Counter Current News and
Jackson Marciana for Counter Current News
June 25, 2015 The Pentagon just changed the rules of war to include legitimizing the killing of any journalists they deem “belligerent.”

The new “laws of war” were released as part of a book of instructions on legitimate warfare practices approved by the United States military.This “rule book” of sorts details what the US government deems the acceptable ways of killing those they claim are the “enemy”… including journalists whose reporting they do not approve.

The manual explains that the Pentagon considers such journalists “unprivileged belligerents,” even though they are not “enemy combatants.”

This distinction is important for the Pentagon, since the battles against Muqtada as-Sadr’s “Jaysh al-Mahdi” militia was a fight the US picked over a newsletter America did not approve of. When the military tried to stop the presses, Sadr’s army took up arms against the US forces.

We don’t hear a lot about that in the media or government these days, because those battles didn’t exactly end in the US’s favor. Now, the American 1,176-page “Department of Defense Law of War Manual” says that it is perfectly legitimate to shoot, explode, bomb, stab, or cut journalists they deem “belligerent.”

 They seem to want to make sure they cover all the ways they will kill enemy-reporters. They clarify that poison and asphyxiating gases are still no-nos that will not be employed in the war against journalists. “In general, journalists are civilians,” the manual reads. “However, journalists may be members of the armed forces, persons authorized to accompany the armed forces, or unprivileged belligerents.”

Professor of Journalism at Georgetown Chris Chambers told RT News that he doesn’t know what this means, since “the Geneva Convention, other tenets of international law, and even United States law – federal courts have spoken on this – doesn’t have this thing on ‘unprivileged belligerents’.”

 Even embedded journalists with military forces are supposed to be protected under international law.“It gives them license to attack or even murder journalists that they don’t particularly like but aren’t on the other side,” Chambers added.

RT notes that Pentagon “did not specify the exact circumstances under which a journalist might be declared an unprivileged belligerent,” but Chambers explains that “their legal department is going over it, as is the National Press Club and the Society of Professional Journalists.” This article was originally published by Counter Current News.

June 28, 2015 Posted by | media, secrets,lies and civil liberties | 1 Comment

Wikileaks Drops Another Damning Trove Of Secret Trade Deal Documents

logo-WikileaksWASHINGTON — The latest trove of secret trade documents released by Wikileaks is offering opponents of the massive deals currently being crafted by the Obama administration more fodder to show that such agreements can impact United States laws and regulations.

The latest leak purports to include 17 documents from negotiations on the Trade In Services Agreement, a blandly named trade deal that would cover the United States, the European Union and more than 20 other countries. More than 80 percent of the United States economy is in service sectors.

According to the Wikileaks release, TISA, as the deal is known, would take a major step towards deregulating financial industries, and could affect everything from local maritime and air traffic rules to domestic regulations on almost anything if an internationally traded service is involved.

June 15, 2015 Posted by | Wikileaks | Leave a comment

Be aware of vested interests pushing disinformation and disrupting the Internet

text shillHow to Spot – and Defeat – Disruption on the Internet August 13, 2012 by WashingtonsBlog  The 15 Rules of Web Disruption

David Martin’s Thirteen Rules for Truth Suppression,  H. Michael Sweeney’s 25 Rules of Disinformation (and now Brandon Smith’s Disinformation: How It Works) are classic lessons on how to spot disruption and disinformation tactics.

We’ve seen a number of tactics come and go over the years.  Here are the ones we see a lot of currently.

Pretend that alternative media – such as blogs written by the top experts in their fields, without any middleman – are untrustworthy or are motivated solely by money (for example, use the derogatory term “blogspam” for any blog posting, pretending that there is no original or insightful reporting, but that the person is simply doing it for ad revenue).

6.  Coordinate with a couple of others to “shout down” reasonable comments.  This is especially effective when the posters launch an avalanche of comments in quick succession … the original, reasonable comment gets lost or attacked so much that it is largely lost.

Use an army of sock puppets.  You can either hire low-wage workers in India or other developing countries to “astroturf” or – if you work for the government – you can use hire military personnel and subcontractors to monitor social media and “correct” information which you don’t like (and see this), or use software which allows you to quickly create and alternate between numerous false identities, each with their own internet address.

8. Censor social media, so that the hardest-hitting information is buried. If you can’t censor it, set up “free speech zones” to push dissent into dank, dark corners where no one will see it……..

4. Question motives. Twist or amplify any fact which could so taken to imply that the opponent operates out of a hidden personal agenda or other bias. This avoids discussing issues and forces the accuser on the defensive……….

Postscript:  Over a number of years, we’ve found that the most effective way to fight disruption and disinformation is to link to a post such as this one which rounds up disruption techniques, and then to cite the disinfo technique you think is being used.

Specifically, we’ve found the following format to be highly effective in educating people in a non-confrontational manner about what the disrupting person is doing:

Good Number 1!

(include the link so people can see what you’re referring to.)

The reason this is effective is that other readers will learn about the specific disruption tactic being used … in context, like seeing wildlife while holding a wildlife guide, so that one learns what it looks like “in the field”.   At the same time, you come across as humorous and light-hearted instead of heavy-handed or overly-intense.

Try it … It works.

June 15, 2015 Posted by | 2 WORLD, media, spinbuster | Leave a comment

The Weather Channel Confronts Republicans on Climate Change

 On Wednesday, the Weather Channel launched a dramatic campaign it says is intended to help shift the climate change conversation from science to solutions.

The series of short videos, called Climate 25, is surprisingly political for a venue like the Weather Channel, and most are aimed at making the case for urgent action from a conservative, Republican angle. Among the featured speakers are U.S. Army Gen. Charles H. Jacoby (Ret.); Henry Paulson, a former CEO of Goldman Sachs who served as secretary of the treasury under President George W. Bush from 2006 to 2009; and Paul Polman, the CEO of Unilever. At one point, Christine Todd Whitman, the EPA administrator under George W. Bush, addresses Republicans directly, saying, “It’s our issue.” &

June 15, 2015 Posted by | climate change, media, USA | Leave a comment

Canadian News media criticised for trivialising nuclear waste dumping

spin-media-nuclearflag-canadaToxic editorial at best    BEVERLY FERNANDEZ, Spokesperson, Stop The Great Lakes Nuclear Dump, Southampton, Ont. Jun 04, 2015 Re: We must dispose of nuclear waste here, Star editorial, May 30. I take exception to this editorial.The Star is entitled to its opinion, but be sure to get the facts correct. You state “the stuff … is garden-variety stuff found in every neighbourhood”.

The Kincardine nuclear waste dump will bury low and intermediate level nuclear waste. Intermediate waste includes resins and components from within the nuclear reactors themselves. These remain radioactive for 100,000 years.

I don’t know what kind of neighbourhood Star staff live in, but the vast majority of neighbourhoods do not hold lethal nuclear waste that remains radioactive for 100,000 years. Stating “the stuff just isn’t that scary or unusual” is completely misleading.

You state, “a virtually impossible leak of a barely hazardous substance.” We are not talking dental X-rays. We are talking about the most lethal material humans have ever created.

There are only three deep dumps that held radioactive nuclear waste on our entire planet. All three failed.The most recent is Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in New Mexico. It was to hold radioactive weapons waste safely for 10,000 years.WIPP is similar in depth and design to the Kincardine dump. In 2014, WIPP leaked a mere 15 years into its operational phase. It contaminated 22 workers. Radioactivity travelled to the next town.

On planet Earth, history proves a 100 per cent failure rate for nuclear waste dumps. So much for your “virtually impossible leak” theory.Ontario contains over a million square kilometres and no other sites were considered. Is the drinking water of 40 million people of so little concern?


June 6, 2015 Posted by | Canada, media | Leave a comment

Japanese mass media now reporting on Tepco’s radioactive leaking into Pacific

Author-Fukushima-diaryJapanese mass media “Jiji” rose in revolt against Tepco / 2 trillion Bq leaked to the sea in 10 months  On 9/8/2014, Japanese mass media, “Jiji” reported about 2 trillion Bq of Sr-90 and Cs-137 leaked to the Pacific only in 10 months.

Pacific-Ocean-drainThis is based on the fact that Fukushima Diary posted about in August.

5 Billion Bq of Strontium-90 flows to the sea every single day [URL]

15 Billion Bq of Tritium flows to the Pacific every single day / Tepco under-reported 1/15 at press conference [URL 2]

The article of Jiji says exactly the same thing as these Fukushima Diary’s posts, but they calculated it further by themselves and published the total volume of leaked Strontium-90 and Cesium-137 from August 2013 to May 2014.

Jiji ended the article to state that the leaked contaminated water contains other nuclides so the actual sea contamination can be worse than reported in this post.

The writer’s name is not credited on the article.

In respond to this coverage, Tepco published an announcement on the same day to comment that they managed to reduce the leaking contamination level by ground improvement. They state Sr-90 level became 1/3, Cs-137 level became 1/10. However it only means 10.5 Trillion Bq used to flow to the Pacific in the previous 10 months, which doesn’t refute Jiji’s coverage.

It seems like Tepco avoided starting the conflict with Jiji, and tried to emphasize on their effort instead.

May 27, 2015 Posted by | Japan, media | Leave a comment

Press freedom very much compromised in Japan

Abe NUCLEAR FASCISMThe Threat to Press Freedom in Japan, NYT  By SHIGEAKI KOGAMAY 20, 2015 TOKYO — During a press conference in March, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga expressed concern over comments I had made during a program on TV Asahi, a major private broadcasting network: I had announced that I would no longer be appearing on the show after being subjected to “fierce bashing” from the prime minister’s office. According to the daily Asahi Shimbun, Mr. Suga said, “We will closely watch how the TV station handles the issue in line with the Broadcast Law” — a veiled threat to revoke the station’s license.

On April 17, a special panel of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (L.D.P.) held a special meeting at party headquarters and summoned executives of both TV Asahi and NHK, a public broadcaster, to discuss two TV programs the party thought had been critical of the administration of Prime MinisterShinzo Abe.

After I appeared on Tokyo MX TV, a local station, on April 25, an executive member of the L.D.P. reportedly told some journalists, “I heard that there was a TV station which allowed Mr. Koga to appear on a program. What a courageous TV station, I should say!”

And so it is that the Japanese government tampers with the media’s independence. This is happening partly because of longstanding structural characteristics that govern the relationship between the media and the state in Japan. But the Abe government has been especially aggressive in using those to its advantage, and major segments of the industry are quickly internalizing its preferences.

Instead of pushing back against Mr. Suga’s intimidation, for example, TV Asahi reprimanded the employees who had produced the TV program during which I criticized the government. And instead of invoking the anti-interference provisions of the broadcasting laws to resist questioning by the L.D.P., those TV executives complied with the party’s summons.

In Japan, relations between the state and journalists are formally maintained through a network of reporters’ clubs, or kisha kurabu. There is a reporters’ club for each ministry, each local government, each political party, each industry association. Membership in the clubs is generally limited to reporters at major media companies. Typically, only members are allowed to attend the press conferences, and only members have access to the organizations’ officials. In return for endowing reporters with this privileged status, the officials take it for granted that their organizations will get favorable coverage. And very often they do.

Another problem is that the media in Japan is not regulated by an independent agency. For example, it is the government itself — specifically the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications — that grants licenses to TV stations, and these are up for renewal regularly. Consequently, TV stations are under constant supervision and fear losing their right to operate if they challenge the government. Given Japan’s parliamentary system, this means that the ruling political parties themselves have a large influence over broadcasting.

What’s more, there is virtually no separation of management and the newsroom at major media companies…..

May 22, 2015 Posted by | Japan, media | Leave a comment

Not only activists, but also corporate nuclear shills use social media

Mike Seccombe’s article (The hashtag crusaders, Saturday Paper 9/5/15) discussed social media as a modern form of activism – particularly for the young. However, I’ve done a bit of searching on this, and discovered that yes – anti nuclear activists are more likely to be older persons, and female.  But – pro nuclear activists also tend to be older persons, usually male.
While social media is seen as a forum for the young, and for activists –  we’re inclined to see them as progressive or anti-establishment.
Not necessarily so, and the Twitter campaign against Dr Caldicott is a fine example of organised social media activism on behalf of corporations, in this case the nuclear lobby.  While it’s pretty sure that at present, in Australia, the numbers of progressive individuals tweeting are greater than the numbers of anti progressives, the very system of Twitter (and no doubt Facebook and others too) enables multiple messages to go out from just one source.

Well funded agencies such as the nuclear lobby use various algorithms to send out, for example, hundreds of Twitter messages from fake Twitter addresses 24 hours a day.
Having studied the tweets on #thorium #nuclear for 3 years, I find that they are repetitively tweeting advertisements, often linking to Youtube ads, and the continual anti Helen Caldicott attack.
Fortunately, Twitter has improved its reporting system, so that nasty personal attacks can be stopped.  I am hoping that Dr Caldicott has fnally addressed this herself. Now, Twitter enables people to report about attacks on another person. I’ve done this in relation to Dr Caldicott, and it seems to have worked, as the attacks have become less vitriolic.
Australia’s pro nuclear Prime Minister Tony Abbott recently dismissed social media as unimportant – “digital graffitti”.  What an interesting comparison!  Time was when walls and buildings were decorated with wonderful activist signs  – Graffitti had its impact in those days – so its modern equivalent has its impact now.
But people should be aware that corporate lobbies are using it too!

May 13, 2015 Posted by | 2 WORLD, media | Leave a comment

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe muzzling critics in Japan’s media

Abe NUCLEAR FASCISMEffort by Japan to Stifle News Media Is Working, NYT By  APRIL 26, 2015 TOKYO — It was an unexpected act of protest that shook Japan’s carefully managed media world: Shigeaki Koga, a regular television commentator and fierce critic of the political establishment, abruptly departed from the scripted conversation during a live TV news program to announce that this would be his last day on the show because, as he put it, network executives had succumbed to political pressure for his removal.

“I have suffered intense bashing by the prime minister’s office,” Mr. Koga told his visibly flabbergasted host late last month, saying he had been removed as commentator because of critical statements he had made about Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Later in the program, Mr. Koga held up a sign that read “I am not Abe,” a play on the slogan of solidarity for journalists slain in January at a French satirical newspaper.

The outburst created a public firestorm, and not only because of the spectacle of Mr. Koga, a dour-faced former top government official, seemingly throwing away his career as a television commentator in front of millions of viewers. His angry show of defiance also focused national attention on the right-leaning government’s increased strong-arming of the news media to reduce critical coverage.

Many journalists and political experts say the Abe government is trying to engineer a fundamental shift in the balance of power between his administration and the news media, using tactics to silence criticism that go beyond anything his predecessors tried and that have frustrated many journalists…….

Mr. Abe’s efforts have had a chilling effect on coverage at a time when he is pushing ahead with a conservative agenda to dismantle the nation’s postwar pacifist consensus and put forth more positive portrayals of Japan’s World War II-era behavior. Experts warn that muzzling the press makes it easier for the government to make big changes that might not enjoy broad popular support, such as rewriting the pacifist Constitution, or even restarting the nation’s stalled nuclear industry.

“The Abe government is showing an obsession with the media that verges on paranoia,” said Keigo Takeda, a former editor in chief at Newsweek Japan who is now a respected freelance journalist. “I have never seen this level of efforts to micromanage specific newspapers and TV programs.”…..

April 30, 2015 Posted by | Japan, media, politics | Leave a comment

Hillary Clinton unfairly smeared in Fox News reporting on uranium deal

Fox News Baselessly Blames Hillary Clinton For Uranium Deal Media Matters, 24 Apr 15 NY Times Reporter Participates In Misleading Segment Fox News baselessly suggested that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton personally approved a deal that eventually gave the Russian government ownership of U.S. uranium mines to benefit a Clinton Foundation donor. But Clinton reportedly had no personal involvement in the deal, which was approved by representatives of nine U.S. agencies after a rigorous review process.

On the April 4 edition of Special Report, host Bret Baier previewed his upcoming hour-long special ondiscredited conservative author Peter Schweizer’s forthcoming book Clinton Cash, in which he accuses Bill and Hillary Clinton of influence peddling with foreign governments in exchange for donations to the Clinton Foundation and speaking fees. The segment focused on Schweizer’s allegations regarding Clinton’s purported role in approving the sale of the uranium mining company Uranium One to the Russian government.

New York Times reporter Jo Becker, whose own reporting on the Uranium One story has been criticized by the Clinton campaign for burying “original reporting that debunks the allegation that then-Secretary Clinton played any role in the review of the sale,” also appeared in the segment. Both the Times and Fox reportedly“made arrangements for exclusive access” to the book.

During the preview, Schweizer detailed the sale of Uranium One to the Russian state corporation Rosatom. ……….

Baier’s preview omitted important context to misleadingly suggest that Clinton personally approved the Russian purchase. According to Time, which received this chapter of Schweizer’s book in advance, the State Department’s role in approving the deal was part of an extensive bureaucratic process, and Schweizer’s chapter offers no indication of Hillary Clinton’s personal involvement in, or even knowledge of, the deliberations. In fact,Time quotes Jose Hernandez, who as former Assistant Secretary of State for Economic, Energy and Business Affairs was involved the deliberations on behalf of the State Department, denying that Clinton was involved in the matter at all.

Moreover, Time pointed out that the “deal’s approval was the result of an extensive interagency process that required the assent of at least nine different officials and agencies” through the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States. According to the report, “State has just one vote on the nine-member committee, which also includes the departments of Defense, Treasury and Energy. Disagreements are traditionally handled at the staff level, and if they are not resolved, they are escalated to deputies at the relevant agencies. If the deputies can’t resolve the dispute, the issues can be elevated to the Cabinet Secretary level and, if needed, to the President for a decision. The official chairman of CFIUS is the Treasury Secretary, not the Secretary of State.”

Furthermore, the Uranium One deal also had to receive approval from “the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, an independent agency outside of the State Department’s purview, as well as Utah’s nuclear regulator. The deal also received approval from Canada’s foreign investment review agency.”

Clinton campaign press secretary Brian Fallon has denied any wrongdoing by Clinton and criticized Becker for burying crucial facts from her report “that debunks the allegation that then-Secretary Clinton played any role in the review of the sale.”

Relying largely on research from the conservative author of Clinton Cash, today’s New York Times alleges that donations to the Clinton Foundation coincided with the U.S. government’s 2010 approval of the sale of a company known as Uranium One to the Russian government. Without presenting any direct evidence in support of the claim, the Times story — like the book on which it is based — wrongly suggests that Hillary Clinton’s State Department pushed for the sale’s approval to reward donors who had a financial interest in the deal. Ironically, buried within the story is original reporting that debunks the allegation that then-Secretary Clinton played any role in the review of the sale.

Schweizer’s book has been roundly denounced and discredited as a smear campaign which presentserroneous evidence to support its claims.

April 25, 2015 Posted by | media, secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA | Leave a comment

Responsibility of journalists to counter the war mongers

We Lucky Molecules, Consortium  April 22, 2015 As American neocons and other war hawks push for endless war in the Mideast and now eastern Europe, the resulting chaos is straining the capacity of civilization to meet basic human needs and raising the risk of nuclear war, what would be a tragic ending to the Universe’s luckiest molecules, writes Robert Parry………….politicians, pundits and pretend patriots push the human race toward endless war, daring the chance that one side or another might take the extra step and unleash nuclear conflagration in some ultimate game of chicken.

………..Journalism’s Role

In my life’s role as a journalist, I have always believed that ignorance presents the greatest danger for humanity touching off such a cosmic catastrophe. Sometimes the ignorance can be self-imposed by people not wanting to know facts that make them uncomfortable or that contest what they have been trained to believe. Other times, the ignorance is imposed from the outside as propaganda to manipulate a population into a desired response, usually to get in line behind some warmongering leader.

Though there’s not much a journalist can do about the first type of ignorance – besides making reliable information available and hoping that people will open their eyes to it – the most daunting and crucial professional challenge is to pierce through the second kind of ignorance, the intentional twisting of reality to elicit a dangerous response from a population.

But success in countering propaganda has become increasingly difficult as its practitioners have become more sophisticated in their management and control of information and as their methods of disinformation delivery have grown more varied. Now, the false information can come from a dominant news outlet but also from an upstart Web site that has the look of independence but is actually bought and paid for by powerful interests…….

the more people understand about the realities of the world, the less vulnerable they are to the propagandists, those clever folks who disseminate ignorance in the superficial form of information and then use that ignorance to dominate the people. The true calling of a journalist is to give the people as many facts as possible and thus the tools to detect and negate the propaganda.

All this goes to the overriding principle that there is nothing more important to a democracy than an informed electorate and to the counterpoint that the most effective way to defeat democracy is to misinform the people. And, as the world hurtles toward more and more wars and ever worsening crises, there may be nothing more important than exposing the lies, exaggerations and prejudices that undergird most conflicts.

As President John F. Kennedy said in perhaps his finest speech – at American University on June 10, 1963 – “For in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s futures. And we are all mortal.”

In an age of environmental fragility and nuclear dangers, the human race must finally recognize its common interests and cooperate in the common cause of averting unnecessary chaos and conflict. We must in the end realize that we are among the luckiest molecules in the Universe – and act accordingly.

April 23, 2015 Posted by | media | Leave a comment

Monatana’s new law to Protect Journalists’ Electronic Privacy

Montana Becomes First State To Pass Law Protecting Journalists’ Electronic Privacy
By: Rachel Blevins Apr 17, 2015, Benswann1

Montana recently passed a bill, sponsored by Liberty Republican Rep. Daniel Zolnikov, which closed a loophole in the state’s media shield law, making Montana the first state to include a provision protecting journalists’ electronic communications from government entities.

Last week, Montana became the first state to include a provision in its Media Confidentiality Act that protected journalists’ electronic communications from the government when Governor Steve Bullock signed a bill “prohibiting disclosure of media info from electronic communications services.”…………..

The text of the bill states that it both prohibits “governmental bodies from questing or requiring the disclosure of privileged news media information from services that transmit electronic communications,” and prohibits “an electronic communication service from being adjudged in contempt” if that service “refuses to disclose certain information.”

Zolnikov tells that he created the bill to help Montana set the precedent at the state level for the rest of the nation.

Freedom of the press is one of the most crucial rights contained in the First Amendment,” Zolnikov said. “The federal government has cracked down on whistleblowers and journalists in the past few years, and many have said this has a ‘chilling effect’ on news reporting.”……….

April 22, 2015 Posted by | civil liberties, media, USA | Leave a comment

Massive governmental and media effort to cover up the truth about Fukushima

media-propagandaStudy: Conspiracy of Fukushima Cover up Between Government and Media Proven, Your News Wire, 14 Apr 15  by  Royce Christyn A groundbreaking study by American University sociology Prof. Celine Marie Pascale has proven there is a continuing and massive effort by varying world governments and major mainstream media outlets to cover up the horrifying truth of Fukushima.

According to the press release made public by the University and Pascale, the media and government (regarding the Fukushima cover up) “largely minimized health risks to the general population”.

Natural News reports: Just how bad was the radiation fallout from the near-complete destruction of three nuclear reactors at the Fukushima power station following a massive earthquake-generated tsunami in March 2011? The answer is, most people simply don’t know – because the media coverage of the damage and fallout, at the time of the accident and in the four years since, has been grossly inadequate, according to a new study –

As noted by American University sociology Prof. Celine Marie Pascale, there has especially been a dearth of U.S. media coverage, the disaster long disappearing from the headlines of domestic newspapers and cable news networks, despite the fact that the crippled plant dumps three hundred tons of radioactive water into the ocean daily, and the region surrounding the plant remains uninhabitable – probably forever.

Further, her new analysis found that U.S. news media coverage of Fukushima “largely minimized health risks to the general population,” says a press release from the university.

The release further states:

Pascale analyzed more than 2,000 news articles from four major U.S. outlets following the disaster’s occurrence March 11, 2011 through the second anniversary on March 11, 2013. Only 6 percent of the coverage – 129 articles – focused on health risks to the public in Japan or elsewhere. Human risks were framed, instead, in terms of workers in the disabled nuclear plant.

‘Articles discuss instead how dangerous cosmic radiation is’

“It’s shocking to see how few articles discussed risk to the general population, and when they did, they typically characterized risk as low,” said Pascale, who studies the social construction of risk and meanings of risk in the current century.

“We see articles in prestigious news outlets claiming that radioactivity from cosmic rays and rocks is more dangerous than the radiation emanating from the collapsing Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant,” she added.

The sociology prof examined news articles, editorials and letters from two major U.S. papers – The New York Times and The Washington Post – and two additional, prominent online news sites – Politico and The Huffington Post. The four outlets are not only among the largest, most influential in the U.S., they are also the most-cited by television news and talk shows, as well as other newspapers and blogs. Also, they are talked up in social media often, says Pascale. So, in that sense, she says, seeing how risk is presented in national prominent media can provide data on how the issue is framed nationally, in public conversations.
The press release further discussed Pascale’s analytical method and variables: – See more at:

April 17, 2015 Posted by | 2 WORLD, media, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Muzzling scientists: UK follows Canada’s lead

flag-UKflag-canadaFollowing Canada’s Bad Example, Now UK Wants To Muzzle Scientists And Their Inconvenient Truths
from the non-appliance-of-science dept Free Speech by Glyn MoodyWed, Apr 1st 2015

Techdirt has been following for a while Canada’s moves to stop scientists from speaking out about areas where the facts of the situation don’t sit well with the Canadian government’s dogma-based policies. Sadly, it looks like the UK is taking the same route. It concerns a new code for the country’s civil servants, which will also apply to thousands of publicly-funded scientists. As the Guardian reports:

Under the new code, scientists and engineers employed at government expense must get ministerial approval before they can talk to the media about any of their research, whether it involves GM crops, flu vaccines, the impact of pesticides on bees, or the famously obscure Higgs boson.


The fear — quite naturally — is that ministers could take days before replying to requests, by which time news outlets will probably have lost interest. As a result of this change, science organizations have sent a letter to the UK government, expressing their “deep concern” about the code. A well-known British neurobiologist, Sir Colin Blakemore, told the Guardian:

“The real losers here are the public and the government. The public lose access to what they consider to be an important source of scientific evidence, and the government loses the trust of the public,” Blakemore said.

Not only that, by following Canada’s example, the British government also makes it more likely that other countries will do the same, which will weaken science’s ability to participate in policy discussions around the world — just when we need to hear its voice most.

Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or, and +glynmoody on Google+

April 10, 2015 Posted by | Canada, media, secrets,lies and civil liberties, spinbuster, UK | Leave a comment

Plea for retired journalists to return and save Japans press freedoms in the face of censorship and control!

imageImage source ;

“Those journalists that used to stand by the side of someone crying,

now stand by those in power.”

Hidetoshi Kiyotake 2015

Summarised by Shaun McGee

Posted to

posted 3 April 2015

Video Published on 2 Apr 2015 by the FCCJ


Minoru Tanaka: Investigative Journalist
Hidetoshi Kiyotake: Investigative Journalist and Author

Comments from the Chairman of the press committee
The reason for the Press freedom Award in Japan is because of the fact that in 2010 Japan was 11th in the rankings for press freedom according to Reporters Without Borders. Japan now has a position of 61st (just behind South Korea and far behind Croatia) out of 180 countries.

The State Secrets Act of 2013 makes nuclear power and relations with the USA taboo for journalists. Journalist freedoms are being eroded to stop embarrassing details from being made public. The governments and Corporations also have been directly influencing Broadcasters and Journalists.

Japanese Media are more fearful and are more wimpy than ever before.

For instance the story of the Education ministers links to the Yakuza has been grossly under reported and there are other scandals not reported also.

The Freedom of the Press Awards will be formally announced on the 3rd May 2015 (World Press Day)
There will be one Award for investigative journalism and another award for non journalism but have contributed to Freedom of information causes.
The prizes are to confer due recognition that is supportive of Open Society, Free Speech and democratic accountability.

Minora Tanaka(Investigative journalist also on the judging panel for the Award)
Tanaka San has been investigating a range of subjects over the years including issues surrounding the nuclear energy industry.
Tanaka San begins outlining a problem called SLAPPs (Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation) against journalists getting too near the truth and these defamation cases have had a chilling effect on journalism. Even if the case is withdrawn because it is a weak case it could be years before that happens and by then time , money and stress will have taken their toll.
Added to the fact that the imposition of the Orwellian State Secrets Act of 2013, Journalism in Japan is in dire straights.
Tanaka San finishes of his statement by exclaiming;
“I am Kenji” (In reference to the recently murdered journalist)

Hidetoshi Kiyotake (Investigative journalist and author)
Currently he has six lawsuits on the go and has 2 of them due in court next week (SLAPPs). Whilst not attending court Kiyotake San likes to do some journalism research and writing. He also leaves time for the freedom of the press issues also. He worked for the Yomuri Shimbun for many years as a financial analyst and has held managerial positions. In 2011 he was dismissed from his post and is now an independent journalist. He one a non fiction prize last year.
He quotes as an example his research into the Sony corporation where he reported on the use of “Isolation Rooms” being used as a punishment for employees.
He then goes onto say that reporting on government and corporate scandals and stories is getting harder and harder all the time, whilst the number of investigative journalists are going down.
It would appear that journalists have become numb to the big changes within these media corporations.
As an example he states that a story of 10,000 or 20,000 people being sacked is not a shock to them anymore.
There have been many job loses also in the media and that also would have been frowned on in the recent past in Japan.
Kiyotake San goes onto ask the question if Japan uses a managerial style that takes into account human dignity and long term perspective as it once did?
As an example he relates a story in the past where a Japanese CEO of Sony asks the CEO of GE on what might be the best managerial style. The CEO of GE announced that if a worker wakes up and is upbeat and positive about his oncoming work day than the right managerial style has been used.

“Those that used to stand by the side of someone crying now stand by those in power.”

Kiyotake San then went on to explain his hopes for the future.

He calls for retired investigative journalists to leave retirement and to come back to the job of reporting and to find some platform in the media or on the internet to publish their articles.

He also calls for working journalists to research topics and publish on other formats to increase competition and improve the quality of reporting and the oversight of government and corporations.

He finishes by asking journalists to not be content with being in a closed club but to go out and publish as independent journalists as well.

Questions and answers on the source video


Edited version by missmilkytheclown1 on YouTube for easy listening

April 3, 2015 Posted by | Japan, media | 4 Comments


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