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

Animal Activists Stop Hiding Their Faces

In November 2017, Mother Jones’ Kiera Butler reported on the animal rights activist group Direct Action Everywhere (DxE) and their “bold new animal liberation movement: no masks, no regrets, all the risk.” Eight of the group’s members recorded themselves, in the middle of the night, rescuing a calf from Zonneveld Dairies Inc. outside of Fresno, California. Zonneveld, a Land O’Lakes supplier, is one of roughly 64,000 commercial dairies. Despite California rules which “stipulate that calves must have clean crates and soft bedding,” DxE found Roselynn (the rescued calve) covered in her own dried diarrhea, dangerously dehydrated, and lying on narrow slats. Roselynn was one of hundreds kept under these conditions.

Because of so-called “ag-gag” laws enacted in eight states, people in animal rescue videos often blur out their own faces and keep their identities private, Butler reported. However, DxE activists do not hide their identities, despite the risks involved. DxE activist Wayne Hsiung said, “We’re daring these industries to try us in the court of public opinion and in the court of law… We are happy to have the debate with the industry. They are terrified that the public will side with us.”  The group says that, to date, its twelve open rescue videos on Youtube have received over three million views combined.

According to Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald, in August FBI agents raided two animal sanctuaries where they have DxE had taken two piglets that they rescued from a facility in Utah.  The Washington Post did publish a story on this incident in September 2017, which quoted statements from both DxE activists and Smithfield Foods, itself owned by Shuanghui International of China.

For the New York Times, Stephanie Strom reported that DxE rescued captive hens at Pleasant Valley Farms, a California farm affiliated with Costco’s Kirkland brand.  Written for the Times’ business and financial section, that article’s headline framed “cage free” farms as part of the problem, but also quoted Paul Shapiro, vice president for farm animal protection at the Humane Society of the United States as saying that “cage-free hen housing was without a doubt better than battery cages, though not without problems.” What coverage there has been in the corporate media has been vague, and the articles that have mentioned DxE make no distinctions between that group and more anonymous rescue operations.

Sources:

Kiera Butler, “Inside the Bold New Animal Liberation Movement: No Masks, No Regrets, All the Risk,” Mother Jones, November 7, 2017, http://www.motherjones.com/food/2017/11/inside-the-bold-new-animal-liberation-movement-no-masks-no-regrets-all-the-risk/#.

Glenn Greenwald, “The FBI’s Hunt for Two Missing Piglets Reveals the Federal Cover-Up of Barbaric Factory Farms,” Intercept, October 5, 2017, https://theintercept.com/2017/10/05/factory-farms-fbi-missing-piglets-animal-rights-glenn-greenwald/.

Student Researcher: Nina Goetz (Syracuse University)

Faculty Evaluator: Jeff Simmons (Syracuse University)

Editor’s Note: For prior coverage by Project Censored of “ag-gag” restrictions targeting animal rights activists, see “Terror Act Against Animal Activists,” story #20 from Censored 2008, as well as “Little Guantanamos: Secretive ‘Communication Management Units’ in the US,” story #21 from Censored 2017.

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