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“Project Censored is one of the organizations that we should listen to, to be assured that our newspapers and our broadcasting outlets are practicing thorough and ethical journalism.” —Walter Cronkite
“Censored 2014 is a clarion call for truth telling. Not only does this volume highlight fearless speech in fateful times, it connect the dots between the key issues we face, lauds our whistleblowers and amplifies their voices, and shines light in the dark places of our government that most need exposure.” –Daniel Ellsberg, The Pentagon Papers
“For ages, I’ve dreamed of a United States where Project Censored isn’t necessary, where these crucial stories and defining issues are on the front page of the New York Times, the cover of Time, and in heavy rotation on CNN. That world still doesn’t exist, but we always have Project Censored’s yearly book to pull together the most important things the corporate media ignored, missed, or botched.” –Russ Kick, author of You Are Being Lied To, Everything You Know Is Wrong, and the New York Times bestselling series The Graphic Canon.
Buy it, read it, act on it. Our future depends on the knowledge this col-lection of suppressed stories allows us.” —San Diego Review
“[Censored] offers devastating evidence of the dumbing-down of main-stream news in America. . . . Required reading for broadcasters, journalists, and well-informed citizens.” —Los Angeles Times
“Activist groups like Project Censored . . . are helping to build the media democracy movement. We have to challenge the powers that be and rebuild media from the bottom up.” —Amy Goodman
“Hot news, cold truths, utterly uncensored.” —Greg Palast
“In another home run for Project Censored, Censored 2013 shows how the American public has been bamboozled, snookered, and dumbed down by the corporate media. It is chock-full of ‘ah-ha’ moments where we understand just how we’ve been fleeced by banksters, stripped of our civil liberties, and blindly led down a path of never-ending war.” –Medea Benjamin, author of Drone Warfare, cofounder of Global Exchange and CODEPINK.
“Project Censored brings to light some of the most important stories of the year that you never saw or heard about. This is your chance to find out what got buried.” –Diane Ravitch, author of The Death and Life of the Great American School System.
“Project Censored continues to be an invaluable resource in exposing and highlighting shocking stories that are routinely minimized or ignored by the corporate media. The vital nature of this work is underscored by this year’s NSA leaks. The world needs more brave whistle blowers and independent journalists in the service of reclaiming democracy and challenging the abuse of power. Project Censored stands out for its commitment to such work.” —Deepa Kumar, author of Islamophobia and the Politics of Empire and associate professor of Media Studies and Middle Eastern Studies at Rutgers University
“[Censored] should be affixed to the bulletin boards in every newsroom in America. And, perhaps read aloud to a few publishers and television executives.” —Ralph Nader
“At a time when the need for independent journalism and for media outlets unaffiliated with and untainted by the government and corporate sponsors is greater than ever, Project Censored has created a context for reporting the complete truths in all matters that matter. . . . It is therefore left to us to find sources for information we can trust. . . . It is in this task that we are fortunate to have an ally like Project Cen-sored.” —Dahr Jamail
“Those who read and support Project Censored are in the know.” —Cynthia McKinney
“Project Censored shines a spotlight on news that an informed public must have . . . a vital contribution to our democratic process.” —Rhoda H. Karpatkin, president, Consumer’s Union
“Most journalists in the United States believe the press here is free. That grand illusion only helps obscure the fact that, by and large, the US corporate press does not report what’s really going on, while tuning out, or laughing off, all those who try to do just that. Americans–now more than ever–need those outlets that do labor to report some truth. Project Censored is not just among the bravest, smartest, and most rigorous of those outlets, but the only one that’s wholly focused on those stories that the corporate press ignores, downplays, and/or distorts. This latest book is therefore a must read for anyone who cares about this country, its tottering economy, and–most important– what’s now left of its democracy.” –Mark Crispin Miller, author, professor of media ecology, New York University.
“The staff of Project Censored presents their annual compilation of the previous year’s 25 stories most overlooked by the mainstream media along with essays about censorship and its consequences. The stories include an 813% rise in hate and anti-government groups since 2008, human rights violations by the US Border Patrol, and Israeli doctors injecting Ethiopian immigrants with birth control without their consent. Other stories focus on the environment, like the effects of fracking and Monsantos GMO seeds. The writers point out misinformation and outright deception in the media, including CNN relegating factual accounts to the “opinion” section and the whitewashing of Margaret Thatcher’s career following her death in 2013, unlike Hugo Chavez, who was routinely disparaged in the coverage following his death. One essay deals with the proliferation of “Junk Food News,” in which “CNN and Fox News devoted more time to ‘Gangnam Style’ than the renewal of Uganda’s ‘Kill the Gays’ law.” Another explains common media manipulation tactics and outlines practices to becoming a more engaged, free-thinking news consumer or even citizen journalist. Rob Williams remarks on Hollywood’s “deep and abiding role as a popular propaganda provider” via Argo and Zero Dark Thirty. An expose on working conditions in Chinese Apple factories is brutal yet essential reading. This book is evident of Project Censored’s profoundly important work in educating readers on current events and the skills needed to be a critical thinker.” -Publisher’s Weekly said about Censored 2014 (Oct.)
“Project Censored interrogates the present in the same way that Oliver Stone and I tried to interrogate the past in our Untold History of the United States. It not only shines a penetrating light on the American Empire and all its deadly, destructive, and deceitful actions, it does so at a time when the Obama administration is mounting a fierce effort to silence truth-tellers and whistleblowers. Project Censored provides the kind of fearless and honest journalism we so desperately need in these dangerous times.” —Peter Kuznick, professor of history, American University, and coauthor, with Oliver Stone, of The Untold History of the United States
“One of the most significant media research projects in the country.” —I. F. Stone

10. AMERICA’S BANKING CRISIS COMING TO A BANK NEAR YOU

A new nationwide financial crisis is brewing and, thanks to the disinterest of the main­stream media, Americans will be just as surprised by it as they were by the massive failure of the Savings and Loan Industry with its huge 500 billion dollar price tag. The bill for a decade of federal deregulation, wild financial speculation in the private sector, and the Reagan Administra­tion’s immense military expenditures is about to come due, and it’s not going to be a pretty sight.

“The looming crisis highlights the fragility of the debt-plagued financial system in the United States,” writes John Miller, Professor of Economics at Wheaton College. The same economic conditions that led to the demise of the savings and loan industry have been eating away at commercial banks, and, according to Dan Brumbaugh, a Stanford economist and expert on the S&L debacle, the same kinds of accounting gimmicks that hid the S&L crisis are now being used to cover up the commercial banking crisis. Brumbaugh thinks many of the country’s banks, including some of the largest – Chase Manhattan, Chemical, Manufacturers Hanover, Bankers Trust, and even Citibank and Bank of America – are nearly insolvent, with the true market value of their assets inadequate to pay back their depositors and other creditors. The banks’ records say otherwise, he asserts, only because of manipulation of their books in areas like non-performing loans to bankrupt Third World countries, for example.

Because of a record number of bank failures this year, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) which insures the $2.7 trillion deposited in U.S. commercial banks, has lost money for the third year in a row. It now holds only 60 cents per $100 of insured deposits, which is the lowest level in its 57-year history. In 1988, the FDIC, for the first time in its his­tory, paid out more than it took in. Bank failures soared from an average of ten per year in 1981 to more than 200 per year by the end of the decade. In the first half of 1990 alone, 112 banks failed.

In a reciprocal cycle of cause and effect, the deteriorating status of the commercial banking industry contributes to the recession many economists say is fast upon us, and, it, in turn, will make the bank crisis even worse. Even now, at a relatively early stage, more banks – almost 1000 – have failed in the last five years than in the previous 51 years of the FDIC fund combined.

The bag the taxpayers will be left holding in the case of a bank failure of the S&L vari­ety, is a big one. The effects will be equally severe and we will pay – as we have been paying – as taxpayers, citizens, borrowers, and workers. The looming crisis in the FDIC highlights the fragility of our debt-plagued financial system. With an increasing number of bank failures, a record number of savings and loans insolvent, major student loan funds strapped, and junk bond dealers and real-estate tycoons bankrupt, the bills are finally coming due for the financial specu­lation that dominated the U.S. in the 1980s.

It is unfortunate that a trusting public, which is going to end up paying those bills, hasn’t been warned by the mainstream media.

 SSU CENSORED RESEARCHER: DENISE MUSSETTER

SOURCE: DOLLARS & SENSE DATE: October 1990

TITLE: “If You Liked the S&L Crisis … You’ll Love the Banking Crisis”

AUTHOR: JOHN MILLER

COMMENTS: On the whole, the mass media failed to put the banking crisis on the national agenda until December, 1990, leaving the public with little information on which to assess the likely effects of a banking crisis on the economy and their day-to-day lives. Author John Miller suggests that “More timely coverage of the rising number of bank failures and the dwindling dollars in the bank insurance fund would have impressed upon `the general public’ the impor­tance of the government acting immediately to protect their interests. Making commercial banks pay higher insurance premiums, stopping financially-troubled banks from paying out dividends, and forcing banks to assess more accurately the market value of their real estate loans would have helped to protect taxpayers from another big bailout bill, like that for the S&Ls. More generally, more coverage of the problems in the U.S. banking system would help to expose the failures of financial deregulation. Deregulation of the banking industry has made a financial panic more likely, not less likely.” Noting that the bankers themselves benefit most directly from the lack of coverage, Miller warns “Covering up the problems in banking means that insurance premiums will go up more slowly for commercial banks, that banks will be less tightly regu­lated, and taxpayers will probably be left holding the bag for a bailout. But more generally, `censoring’ the banking crisis from the `mainstream’ media works in behalf of all those who have benefited from the financial deregulation and debt explosion of the 1980s: from bankers, to S&L executives, to real estate speculators, to bond traders who (as Tom Wolfe puts it) went from `bores’ to `masters of the universe’.”

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