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“[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
“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 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
“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
“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
“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.)
“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.
“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
“Hot news, cold truths, utterly uncensored.” —Greg Palast
“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
Buy it, read it, act on it. Our future depends on the knowledge this col-lection of suppressed stories allows us.” —San Diego Review
“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.
“Those who read and support Project Censored are in the know.” —Cynthia McKinney
“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
“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.
“[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
“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

2. THE S&L CRISIS:. THE SOLUTION IS WORSE THAN THE CRIME

An early estimate of the cost to taxpayers to bail out the savings and loan industry was $155 billion. More recently, a Wall Street Journal correspondent suggested a $1.4 trillion figure. But the most “acceptable” figure for the bailout appears to be $500 billion.

To put that $500 billion in perspective, it helps to realize that the entire cost of World War II, in current dollars and including service-connected veterans’ benefits, is about $460 billion – or $40 billion less than the S&L bailout. The cost of the Vietnam war, including benefits, was $172 billion; Korea was $70 billion; World War I was $63 billion. The Civil War was $7 billion. The combined assets of Prudential, Metropolitan Life, Equitable Life, Aetna, Teachers Insurance, New York Life, Connecticut General, Travelers, John Hancock and North­western Mutual don’t add up to $500 billion. The combined 1988 profits of all the companies on the Fortune 500 list added up to just $115 billion. And the combined 1987 budgets of all 50 states didn’t add up to $500 billion.

In fact, the total federal expenditures on one of the nation’s most widespread and tragic problems – the homeless – is little more than one-tenth of one percent of the amount we’ll spend to bailout the savings and loan industry.

This “solution” was engineered by the Resolution Trust Corporation (RTC) – the government’s misnamed S&L caretaker which is engaged in a massive giveaway that will make Teapot Dome look like a demitasse cup. The RTC is the nation’s largest operator of financial institutions and, according to The New York Times, “quickly becoming the biggest financial institution in the world, the largest single owner of real estate, the largest liquidation company and the largest auction firm.” The RTC solution includes a little known $500 million in outside legal fees and $37 million in administrative costs. And the RTC was established without any meaningful public debate nor with any serious consideration of alternatives.

Here’s just one example of the RTC solution: an Arizona insurance executive with a history of legal and regulatory problems was allowed to buy 15 insolvent Texas savings and loan associations with $1000 of his own money and $70 million of borrowed money and in turn was promised $1.85 billion of taxpayers’ money in federal subsidies. Commenting on this revelation, Senator Howard Metzenbaum said “In all my years in public office, I have never seen such an abandonment of public responsibility …”. Remember, this case was not part of the S&L crisis, but part of the so-called solution.

One can’t expect Congress to be seriously concerned about any solution considering that S&Ls gave $45 million to congressional candidates during the past three elections, including more than $1 million to members of current congressional banking committees.

What has taken place involves fraud, malfeasance, misfeasance, and nonfeasance of a scope never seen before. No war, no defense program, no social program, no other scandal has ever cost what this will cost. And yet the media, absorbed in human interest aspects of the crisis at best, relegate important S&L stories to the business pages despite their enormous effect on every American.

SSU CENSORED RESEARCHER: DYLAN BENNETT

THE S&L “SOLUTION”

SOURCE: THE PROGRESSIVE REVIEW, 1379 Connecticut Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20009, DATE: August 1990

TITLE: “No-Fault Capitalism Meets Lemon Socialism”

AUTHOR: Sam Smith

SOURCE: THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, 200 Liberty St., New York, NY 10028, DATE: 8/9/90

TITLE: “Viewpoint: Biggest Robbery in History – You’re the Victim”

AUTHOR: Michael Gartner

COMMENTS: Author Sam Smith said he was surprised when he started his research into the efforts taken to solve the S&L crisis at how little media attention was given to the nature of the S&L bailout and how it was being carried out. “Even investigative reporting tended to concen­trate on how the crisis developed and not on how it was being resolved,” Smith said. “I think there are a number of reasons for this: the story being too intimidating, a tendency for journalists (like politicians) to downgrade numbers to adjectives (as in “the $300-billion bailout”) rather than facts often far more important than some official’s sound-bite, … and so forth.” Smith suggests that the primary beneficiary from the lack of coverage given this issue is a select group of financial entrepreneurs and institutions who have the capital, skill, and contacts to take advan­tage of the government’s haphazard fire-sale approach. He concludes “The S&L crisis was a big story, probably the biggest financial scandal of American history – until the S&L bailout began. Every dollar lost through corruption, sloppiness or fiscal manipulation in the bailout makes the solution $1 more expensive than the original scandal. In understanding and dealing with this new crisis, the public is getting little help from the media.”

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