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“One of the most significant media research projects in the country.” —I. F. Stone
“[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.
“[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
“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 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
“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 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
“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
“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 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
“Hot news, cold truths, utterly uncensored.” —Greg Palast
Buy it, read it, act on it. Our future depends on the knowledge this col-lection of suppressed stories allows us.” —San Diego Review
“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.)
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“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.
“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.

24. THE CANNED HUNT

Hunters say the thrill of hunting comes from the chase not from the kill. The booming canned hunt business tells a different story.

As many as half a million “hunters” pay hundreds and often thousands of dollars to some 4,000 canned hunt promoters in the U.S. alone, to be sure of a kill — even if the chase is just a matter of finding the best hole in a cage to poke a weapon through.

Shooting fish in a barrel may soon be not a metaphor but an option for those who can’t afford to kill a captive African lion ($5,995, “with good mane,” according to a recent price list).

In the canned hunt scenario, animals are fenced in or kept in cages until a “hunter” calls for the beast’s release, at which time the “sport” commences. Often the released animal can only run in circles around an enclosed compound (some smaller than an acre), without an escape route. Some even make desperate runs for safety under parked cars, but to no avail. The animals, including some exotic species, are fired upon at nearly point blank range, ensuring the “sportsman” of a kill. After witnessing a hunt, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service special agent Bill Talkin said “None of the animals got more than 100 feet from the cage when they were shot.”

The typical canned hunter is an older, wealthy man who wants guaranteed success of bringing home a trophy to mount, without the added hassle of trekking into the woods. The ill-fated animals include endangered species such as African leopards, exotic cats, Bengal tigers, grizzly bears, etc. And while most canned hunt promoters know better than to openly advertise opportunities to shoot endangered species, most trophy hunters know how to wangle the deals they want — shooting a couple of animals legally on initial visits while getting to know the staff, flashing money; dropping hints.

The most popular form of canned hunting in North America is captive bird-shooting. It is estimated that about 55 million tame birds are killed in canned hunts each year in the U.S.

President George Bush celebrated his election in 1988 with a bird-killing spree at the Lazy F Ranch near Beeville, Texas. When questioned about it, he protested “These aren’t animals, these are wild quail.”

Ironically, the canned hunting boom is encouraged by increasingly financially strapped state and provincial wildlife agencies. Hurt by falling sales of permits to hunt animals in the wild, they see licensing canned hunts as a promising source of revenue.

While. there are many hunters who are sportsmen and who enjoy the chase more than the kill, the author’s investigation shows that for every hunter who wants to stalk animals at length, dozens will pay as much, or more, to kill a trophy on demand, within yards of a bar, a video camera, and a taxidermist.

SSU CENSORED RESEARCHER: ROBYN O’CONNOR

SOURCE: THE ANIMALS’ AGENDA, 456 Monroe Turnpike, Monroe, CT 06468, DATE: September 1991

TITLE: “Killing The Captives” AUTHOR: Merritt Clifton

COMMENTS: Merritt Clifton, news editor of The Animals’ Agenda, has been writing exposes of the endangered species aspect of hunting for various U.S. and Canadian media since 1985. He believes the “mass media completely ignored, and still ignore, clear evidence that killing captive animals is not an aberration but rather a mainstream activity of hunters: over 500,000 of the 14 million U.S. hunters killed captive animals in 1990 alone. The mass media have also completely ignored the involvement of the U.S. power elite in both trophy hunting and killing captive animals (both George Bush and Dan Quayle are involved, to name just two). Finally, with a handful of exceptions, the mass media have completely ignored the perversion of captive breeding programs for endangered species, managed by tax-funded zoos, to produce living targets for trophy hunters.”

Clifton charges that the widespread practice of killing captive animals puts the lie to the image of hunters as “sportsmen.” In turn, he suggests, ‘This undermines the disproportionate hold the hunting lobby holds over management of public lands and wildlife (for instance, as I’m (Clifton) writing this, hunters have just pushed a bill through the House of Representatives to open up all National Parks to hunting, which means that National Parks will be off limits to 97% of Americans who don’t hunt for approximately a quarter of the year, if the bill also clears the Senate, as it is expected to do). Second, knowing what some of our national leaders do for sport would permit better understanding of their character, as manifested in more visible areas of national and international affairs. Third, understanding where the trophy target animals come from could help us to re-evaluate and redirect endangered species captive breeding programs, so that the tax funds spent on them really go to protect rare animals, rather than to make more lions and tigers available to trophy hunters.”

Clifton concludes “If shooting animals purely for kicks and trophies -­almost none are ever eaten — is something we as a society are willing to condone, we’re pretty much back at the level of the Romans who indulged in gladiator fights among slaves and wild animals while their society disintegrated.”

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