Connect With Us

“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 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
“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 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
“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
“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
“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.
“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
“One of the most significant media research projects in the country.” —I. F. Stone
“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.
“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.
“[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
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] 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
“Hot news, cold truths, utterly uncensored.” —Greg Palast
“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
“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

23. Dioxin: Still Deadly After All These Years (and All That Hype)

Source: EARTH ISLAND JOURNAL Date: Spring 1995; “EPA Study Reveals Dioxin Dangers”; Author: Stephen Lester

SYNOPSIS: When the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) long awaited “reassessment” of the health effects of dioxin was finally released in draft form in September 1994, it indicated that dioxin’s health impacts were worse than previously reported. The preliminary EPA study confirmed what grassroots activists have feared: dioxin, a by-product of chemical processes that use chlorine, does irreparable damage to the human body.

Yet, for a full year, these findings have gone almost unnoticed by the mass media. These are the same media that widely publicized a 1991 report by The Centers for Disease Control that found dioxin was less harmful than previously suspected and subsequently led the EPA to consider a “reassessment.”

These were upbeat dioxin stories on how we’ve been confused once again by experts who can’t seem to agree on anything. There was even an “NBC Nightly News” mention (8/15/91) of how folks from the contaminated, condemned, and evacuated Times Beach area along the Mississippi River, were wondering if it might be okay to go home again.

But the recent unpublicized EPA report found that dioxin levels 100 times lower than those associated with developing cancer may cause severe reproductive and developmental effects, and disrupt regulatory hormones in industrial workers and laboratory animals.

Ninety percent of dioxin enters the human body through the food chain. Dioxin particles produced by industrial processes and waste lodge in soil, settle on plants, and contaminate water systems. People then eat fish, meat, and produce that contain low but hazardous dioxin levels. The report details how dioxin and dioxin-like chemicals damage the body by “attaching” to specific receptor sites in cell tissues. When hormones and enzymes are displaced, certain normal cell functions cannot be carried out. The report clearly suggests that, despite earlier reports, no amount of exposure to dioxin is safe.

Dioxin is created as a byproduct of the manufacturing process by chemical companies; plastics producers; makers of rubber, dyes and pesticides; pulp and paper mills that use chlorine bleaches; and incinerator plants.

The report does not mention corporate producers of dioxin, such as Dow or Monsanto, who stand to lose if the EPA clamps down on dioxin releases. For years, these companies have orchestrated a political and scientific campaign to confuse the public and create a bureaucratic stalemate.

Corporations could face billion-dollar lawsuits for health and environmental damage caused by dioxin exposures. But they stand to save millions of dollars if they can settle pending lawsuits before the EPA reassessment is finalized, because the final report would give complainants greater evidence that dioxin is hazardous.

The Virginia-based Citizens Clearinghouse for Hazardous Waste has called for an immediate halt to the incineration of hazardous waste and a phaseout of chlorinated organic compounds in all industrial production. Greenpeace’s Zero Dioxin campaign argues that processes that create dioxin must either be altered so that no dioxin is produced, or banned.

SSU Censored Researcher: Mary Jo Thayer

COMMENTS: The significance of the recent findings of the health dangers of dioxin received very little attention from the mainstream press, according to investigative author Stephen Lester. “To my knowledge, there was no TV coverage, no coverage by the news weeklies and only minor coverage by several major newspapers. Given that dioxin is the most potent carcinogen for the general population ever tested; that we know that dioxin is coming from incinerators, paper mills and chemical processing plants; and that it is getting into dairy products, meat, fish and breast milk, you’d think that the issue would have received more than the cursory attention of the chemical trade press and one day of “here’s EPA’s newest report’ in the Washington Post and New York Times.”

Lester warned that dioxin is the DDT of the ’90s. “It is persistent, pervasive and showing up in the bodies of people all over the world. It differs from DDT in that the main concern with DDT was its carcinogenicity. With dioxin, not only is it a potent carcinogen, but its non-cancer causing effects (infertility, depressed immune response, endometriosis, loss of sex drive, diabetes) occur at very low levels, levels already found in the general population. These and other non-cancer effects may prove to be more important than dioxin’s ability to cause cancer. We have to know what dioxin is, where it is coming from, and how it’s hurting us before we can do anything about it. And, we need to know that we can do something about it. Not lifestyle changes, but saving our lives.”

Lester charges corporate America is benefiting from the limited media coverage given dioxin. “More specifically, the chemical and paper industry that does not want to alter its production practices to eliminate the chemicals (largely chlorine) that generate dioxin as a by-product of production. Industry says that we need more studies and they hire high powered public relations firms to argue their points and deluge the mainstream media with issues designed to confuse and defuse the press’s interest. Government is reluctant to act and finds it easiest to do nothing but study and study and study and study …”

The organization Lester works for, the Citizens Clearinghouse for Hazardous Waste, has begun a campaign to educate the American public about the dangers of dioxin. “We have written several additional articles for our newsletter, prepared “campaign kits,’ sent copies to grassroots environmental organizations and to the mainstream press. We have written and published a book — Dying from Dioxin (South End Press, 1995) — and have begun efforts to create alliances with organizations across the country to educate people and begin to eliminate dioxin exposures. Still, there has been very little media interest and coverage of this story.”

Facebook Comments