Discussion of the UK Media Landscape & Future Prospects for Left Media (Worth watching even if you don’t live in the UK)

If I get the time I may add my comments here, but in short: Getting serious union support (money) for left media is a great idea. The more unions are democratized and the more radical they become, the greater chance there is of that happening.

The thing that’s missing is an organized left. Could Momentum be turned into an activist movement that doesn’t just advocate for the Labour Party but actually pushes politicians from the left? If so, could they be useful enough to everyday people (I mean actually useful, like providing actual help) that they would join up and grow the left? As an outside (far outside) observer, I would guess not. How could they change that? Or maybe the most left in that organization could branch off and try to start something that tries to go in the direction just described. Right now if Momentum members threw a pound in the pot every month they could fund a lot of left media. See how that works?

Yes, there is an irony, or maybe more specifically a catch-22: In order to have a large effective left media, people have to be educated about politics and more specifically they need to have a solid basis for an analysis. And in order for people to be educated in that manner it greatly helps to have a thriving left media.

A thriving left media can be built out of a thriving radical movement, but we don’t have that. At the moment, all over the world, the left continues to be atomized and essentially refuses to organize itself and unite under one flag. There is a little movement in the right (correct) direction in some countries, but viewed optimistically, the most you could say is that it is nascent. If you listen to left media and left orgs, you can hear brief mentions of the necessity of the left to be an organized international force, but that is putting the cart before the horse because the majority of the left in most countries think they can stay in their own lanes and just get together for protests and specific events – and even worse, there is a conventional wisdom that permeates the left that assumes building a unified left under one flag (say a party or something like a better IWW) is not only not necessary, but is a bad idea. I have no problem with a diversified left, but one that isn’t as organized and unified as capitalists are worldwide can never hope to win, let alone put up a credible fight. When we are faced with actual extinction, not being organized and unified is not an option.

To tie up this non-comment comment, an organized unified left could easily fund left media. Not only that, but a media that is organized and unified worldwide could more easily share information, knowledge, resources, and would definitely help build the left and the movement we need.

I.F. “Izzy” Stone – lessons for journalists and everyone else

Izzy quotes from Wikiquote:

There must be renewed recognition that societies are kept stable and healthy by reform, not by thought police; this means there must be free play for so-called subversive ideas – every idea subverts the old to make way for the new. To shut off subversion is to shut off peaceful progress and to invite revolution and war.
I.F. Stone’s Weekly (1954-03-15)

Every time we are confronted with a new revolution we take to the opium pipes of our own propaganda.
I.F. Stone’s Weekly (1963-01-21)

I sought in political reporting what Galsworthy in another context had called “the significant trifle” — the bit of dialogue, the overlooked fact, the buried observation which illuminated the realities of the situation.
The Haunted Fifties (1963)

The fault I find with most American newspapers is not the absence of dissent. it is the absence of news. With a dozen or so honorable exceptions, most American newspapers carry very little news. Their main concern is advertising.
The Haunted Fifties (1963)

A certain moral imbecility marks all ethnocentric movements.
I.F. Stone’s Weekly (1967-08-03)

All governments lie, but disaster lies in wait for countries whose officials smoke the same hashish they give out.
In a Time of Torment, 1961-1967 (1967), p. 317

Lifelong dissent has more than acclimated me cheerfully to defeat. It has made me suspicious of victory. I feel uneasy at the very idea of a Movement. I see every insight degenerating into a dogma, and fresh thoughts freezing into lifeless party line.
I.F. Stone’s Bi-Weekly (1969-05-19)

I thought I might teach philosophy but the atmosphere of a college faculty repelled me; the few islands of greatness seemed to be washed by seas of pettiness and mediocrity.
I.F. Stone’s Bi-Weekly (1971-12-14)

Web Reading List #6 [9-17-2013]

Guardian Story on Israel and N.S.A. Is Not ‘Surprising’ Enough to Cover
~
WHAT’S BECOME OF THE GERMAN GREENS?
~
The Suicide Detective
~
The Progressive Movement is a PR Front for Rich Democrats
~
We Must Hate Our Children
~
How Does the Ruling Class Feel When It Rules?
~
My Technology, My Self; When we talk about technology, aren’t we really talking about ourselves?
~
Fear and Loathing in Modern Media: Hunter S. Thompson on Journalism, Politics, and the Subjective

Counterspin

Counterspin

CounterSpin is FAIR’s weekly radio show, hosted by Janine Jackson, Steve Rendall and Peter Hart. CounterSpin is heard on more than 130 noncommercial stations across the United States and Canada and provides a critical examination of the major stories every week, exposing what the mainstream media might have missed in their own coverage.