In the face of corporate dominance robbing the American people of their capacity to think: TIME TO TURN TO ALTERNATIVE MEDIA

By Paul J. Balles

5 January 2011

Paul J. Balles looks at the hazards of relying on the mainstream media, which are increasingly concentrated in the hands of a small number of conglomerates and moguls, such as Rupert Murdoch, and suggests some websites and commentators in alternative media.

For me, as a journalist, the web offers the most interesting and often most reliable sources because they are shorn of the consensual bias, and a censorship by omission, that pervades broadcasting. (John Pilger)

Today, increasing numbers of people have become fed up with lies, omissions and cover-ups by both governments and the mainstream media.

One reason for the current interest in WikiLeaks is the fascination of confidential and embarrassing secrets exposed.

What constitutes the mainstream media? Twenty years ago several journalists expressed concern that the number of major news sources in America had diminished to 50.


Murdoch’s dominance

Today, conglomerates have bought up most of those news sources; and the number of major news sources has been reduced to six! These six control all the news reported in America and much of what gets reported in the UK and Europe.

Rupert Murdoch, one of the world’s biggest media moguls, owns outlets in Australia (the Mirror), England (News of the World, the Sun and The Times,BSkyB), Asia (Star TV) and the USA (20th Century Fox and Fox TV).

Murdoch’s News Corp. holdings now include a lion’s share of the newspaper industry in Australia, plus about one-third of British newspapers; and in the US he has film and TV interests, newspapers, book publishers, sports teams, and much more. In Asia he owns Star Television.

According to Britain’s Daily Telegraph, concerns about Murdoch’s media control in the UK had ministers from Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg’s party discussing ways to limit Murdoch.

Secretly recorded tapes revealed that ministers from Clegg’s group criticized policy and vowed to block Rupert Murdoch’s plans to expand his media empire.

Business Secretary Vince Cable, a key Clegg ally and member of the Liberal Democrat Party, was stripped of responsibility for media competition issues after he was recorded boasting to undercover reporters that he had declared war on Murdoch.

Thousands of smaller media without the resources to get reportage directly rely on the major conglomerates for their news. Thus, small newspapers in Canton, Ohio or Exeter, England or Bahrain depend on the major news outlets for what they report.

This means they choose which news is important, which news they don’t want reported, what kind of slant should be taken and who – among their owners and corporate advertisers – might be offended or pleased by what they report.

The recently revealed story of New York Timesreporter David Rohde is an apparently justifiable example of press censorship.

On 22 June 2009, when news came that Rohde had escaped from his Taliban captors, few knew he had even been kidnapped, because for the seven months he and two Afghan colleagues were in the Taliban’s hands, the New York Times kept that information under wraps.

Kelly McBride, who teaches ethics to journalists, says she was “really astounded” by the media blackout. “It makes me wonder what else 40 international news organizations have agreed not to tell the public.”

Alternative media

What does the reference to “alternative” media mean? It refers to newspapers, magazines, radio or television that cover news that doesn’t get reported or is under-reported in the mainstream media.

“It’s not too late to add a useful New Year’s resolution: get some news and views that you won’t find in the mainstream media.”

A number of reliable alternative sites include news and commentary related to international issues as well as accurate and fair perspectives on the Middle East:

In addition to websites that can be visited for their alternative views, a number of writers can be relied on to report accurately and provide revealing commentary avoided by mainstream media. To view articles, simply type their names into a search engine like Google, Yahoo or Bing.

Some of the leading – always reliable – commentators include Robert Fisk, John Pilger, Gwynne Dyer, Mark Steele, Uri Avnery, Arundhati Roy, Alexander Cockburn, Ted Rall, Greg Palast, Robert Jensen, Mike Whitney, Alan Hart, Jeff Blankfort, Gilad Atzmon, Jonathan Cook, Mazin Qumsiyeh, Chris Hedges, Ramzy Baroud, Franklin Lamb, James Petras, Debbie Menon, Glenn Greenwald, Paul Craig Roberts, Stephen Zunes, Amy Goodman, Eric Margolis, Richard Falk, Jeff Gates, Stuart Littlewood and Gordon Duff.

It’s not too late to add a useful New Year’s resolution: get some news and views that you won’t find in the mainstream media. Read a news commentary by each of these writers in 2011.

The views expressed herein are the views of the author exclusively and not necessarily the views of VT, VT authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors, partners, technicians, or the Veterans Today Network and its assigns. LEGAL NOTICE - COMMENT POLICY

Posted by on January 4, 2011, With Reads Filed under World. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.


  1. foo  January 6, 2011 at 11:18 am

    No argument from me on that score. I have no respect for either of them.

    BTW, Les Visible, in his “Reflections in a Petri Dish” blog of today, January 6, labels Paul J. Balles as “another gatekeeper.”

    “…Him and all of his, birds of a feather, just want to be left to rub leather elbow patches in the ivory towers and pristine meadows of academe.”

  2. Penumbra  January 5, 2011 at 9:08 pm

    foo, that’s because Raimondo writes to enhance his “alternative” celebrity creds, NOT to enhance the dissemination of truth. He’s in the same boat with Cockburn on that score.

  3. Penumbra  January 5, 2011 at 9:05 pm


    True, in recent times I’ve come to wonder about the extent of Pilger’s intellectual honesty, however in fairness to some excellent investigative efforts on his part in past years I still give him the benefit of the doubt if not my prior glowing endorsement.

    Vis a vis your mention of the Killing Fields of Cambodia, this is one area where Pilger shines. If you have not already done so, I recommend his documentary Cambodia Betrayed. Therein you will learn some eye-opening facts even about the knowing complicity of Pres. Carter, who in his time in the Oval Office, did much to protect and advance the Khmer Rouge’s criminal enterprise.

  4. Ron Paul 2012  January 5, 2011 at 3:22 pm is good too.

  5. Ron Paul 2012  January 5, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    Create a dual boot system and install a copy of windows and a copy of Linux ( Redhat/Ubuntu ).

    Use Linux for web surfing and windows for everything else.

  6. Dan  January 5, 2011 at 1:29 pm

    Penumbra and Paul V have it right about Chomsky, which applies to his Aussie footstool, John Pilger, as well, and it’s worth analyzing Chomsky’s analysis to determine his motives in terms of the Talmudic hermeneutic of deception. If Chomsky is known politically for anything, it is his whitewashing of every Marxist and collectivist atrocity since the advent of the Soviet Union. How about his persistent denial of the killing fields in Cambodia even after the Kmer Rouge itself admitted as much, or the utter destruction of Nicaragua, reducing the latter to a condition worse than Haiti’s? He appears to see his fellow man as pawns to be exterminated here and lauded for their victimhood there to suit his megalomaniacal delusions of instantiating a new god in the person of people just like himself. I find the exposure of government lies on this site extremely suspect insofar as its leftist propagandists would replace the incidental evils of today with institutionalized horrors tomorrow, unless of course the history of collectivism is untrue and they’ve got different motives this time around.

  7. foo  January 5, 2011 at 8:38 am

    I infer that the reason that no one has yet mentioned and is that everyone gave up on them years ago.

    It would be bad enough, if Justin Raimondo and Scott Horton respectively merely ignored 9/11 truth. It’s even worse that they openly ridicule it. Raimondo has even invoked the “tin-foil hat” denigration.

  8. william  January 5, 2011 at 2:32 am

    Pres. Clinton freed La Rouche from jail. I know a La Rouche member and that’s what he told me.
    Don’t know if it’s true or not.

  9. Bink  January 5, 2011 at 1:54 am

    i`ll try and watch it.


  10. Ron Paul 2012  January 5, 2011 at 1:47 am

    Listen, I don’t think Ron Paul is perfect by any means either, but I still support him.

    This is a problem with people who have become disenchanted with the system, they become hypercritical.
    I see it all the time in the “movement”, everyone is looking for perfection.
    We won’t win being like that.

    Like you said you agree with alot of what he says, so take the good stuff and dump the rest.

    Politics is dirty, you know that.
    I posted a link to a historical documentary you should definitely watch but it’s sitting in the moderation cue.
    I guess check back tomorrow.

  11. Bink  January 5, 2011 at 1:47 am

    Let’s just say reality must not be too pleased with Bill Clinton right now either.

    And apparently the truth isn’t to happy with Bill Clinton right now either.

    And the truth shouldn’t play politics.

  12. Bink  January 5, 2011 at 1:35 am

    I agree with much of what LaRouche or his group has researched.

    Never seen him before. Did`t know he was still alive.

    I thought I knew where he was supposedly coming from.

    But Bill Clinton ?

    Such was a stop sign on Lyndon LaRouche.

  13. Ron Paul 2012  January 5, 2011 at 1:27 am

    I don’t know what video you’re referring to.
    He wrote a book called “Dope Inc” that totally exposed Britians involvement in the world drug trade and he has a brilliant NWO documentary called “Firewall” which I can verify from my own research is very accurate.

    I suggest you check that out instead.

  14. Ron Paul 2012  January 5, 2011 at 1:25 am

    One more thing, the guy requires a lot of study to understand his position.
    From what I can see he isn’t to happy with Bill Clinton right now but he plays politics.

    You can email them on the subject, they’ll respond.
    I’d love to hear the answer.

  15. Bink  January 5, 2011 at 1:24 am

    I watched it again. I still can`t watch it past the `Bill Clinton` part.

    I have plants to water.

    Let me know if anything happened

  16. Ron Paul 2012  January 5, 2011 at 1:21 am

    Nobody is perfect.

    LaRouche is still a real patriot and a real democrat unlike the faker in the Whitehouse.

  17. OS  January 5, 2011 at 1:14 am

    Many service programs are activated when you boot computer, and make connections when you go online. If you have a phony service program installed, you can have same programs loaded over and over ever time you boot. Check the Utility, and go online for the minimum necessary and for unknowns.

  18. Bink  January 5, 2011 at 1:10 am


    I watched your Lydon Larush video until he started talking in a positive manner about Bill Clinton.

    Then I shut it off.

    Did i miss anything ?

  19. OS  January 5, 2011 at 12:51 am


    Many Backdoor programs are loaded through bogus email links, stay away from email links unless you know the person.

    If your using an MS Operating System, goto “run” (DOS Command) and type “msconfig”, then turn “OFF” unnecessary service programs. Check Internet and get listings that you can turn OFF, this will also speed up your system.

    The “msconfig” command will display your System Configuration Utility Window.

    Also Pen recommended some good software as well.

    Sometimes Hackers will change the computer BIOS as well, check and make certain the computer BIOS is configured properly. Check for changes.

    As the computer starts, you should see (key) function on the screen to enter BIOS.

  20. Bink  January 5, 2011 at 12:47 am

    Gord – if this guy is a peace-maker – He should readjust his ammo.

    (He seems to be coming up with quite a few Blanks.)

  21. Ron Paul 2012  January 5, 2011 at 12:37 am

    This is an great source, they almost never make a mistake.
    I get annoyed that they don’t get more airtime.

  22. Gordon Duff  January 5, 2011 at 12:34 am

    Paul V…
    How ever… Paul Balles is trying to be a peacemaker. We respect him. Yes…I know exactly where you are coming from.

  23. Bink  January 5, 2011 at 12:33 am

    Paul V. Sheridan
    What you trying to say here exactly?
    Inside job ?
    (With apologies to Knee Ya Ha Ha)
    (Inside comment – sorry)

  24. Paul V. Sheridan  January 5, 2011 at 12:13 am

    “You guys are way off on Cockburn, Chomsky and CounterPunch.”

    Why, because you used to/still write for Cockburn/Counterpunch? Funny how you don’t forthrightly mention your implicit if not understandable/expected bias.

    “You would have a difficult time presenting a factual rebuttal to Chomsky and Cockburn’s analysis.”

    Really? I see. You mean, for example, the “diffcult time” I have had shellacking Alexander for FIVE YEARS regarding his UTTERLY FARCICAL claims about the physical evidence he claims to have seen/have access to regarding the Pentagon circa 9/11? That “factual rebuttal”? Uh huh.

    It is YOU Michael that is “way off” on Cockburn, now and until he comes clean on his gatekeeping/access-hungry not-so-coy sycophantisms…indeed, were these not such serious subjects, his antics would be laughable.

    Chomsky?! You can’t be serious. Next he will be the one they use to stage as a “Chapstick bomber” or whatever nonsense they seek to ban due to “Islamic terrorists.”

    Chomsky is VERY good at what he does, and has been at it a LONG time…mixing analysis of the obvious with obscuration of the important…he’s fooled no one. He and Cass Sunstein are good Talmudic friends from inside the Boston beltway (MIT/Harvard).

    Analysis of what? His analysis of the free-fall collapse of WTC-7? The non-indictment of Osama bin Laden? Chompsky’s analysis of the Balfour Declaration?

    What analysis are you talking about? His honesty and analysis of the following five names perhaps:

    Oded Ellner,
    Paul Kurzberg,
    Sivan Kurzberg,
    Omer Marmari,
    Yaron Shmuel??

    Let’s see…he’s at MIT…the same place that has “experts” on Discovery Channel declaring that they aren’t sure if the WTC tower structural designers assumed plane strikes with aircraft that have fuel aboard (!?) …THAT sort of analysis?

    Chomsky: mixing analysis of the obvious with obscuration of the truly important.

  25. Bink  January 4, 2011 at 8:59 pm

    In other words Chomsky either is a complete moron and doesn’t understand concepts like gravity and resistance;
    Or is basically – a bit of a shill, who knows ‘when to shut the gate.’
    Cockburn’s father or grandfather Claude was involved in left wing propaganda decades ago. Same boat. Same gate.

  26. Penumbra  January 4, 2011 at 8:20 pm

    I advise you to switch from Kaspersky to Comodo Internet Security (free version). It has exceptional firewall/constant monitoring Defense and an elaborate AV system that utilizes sandboxing to cordon off unknown processes whilst allowing them to continue running in case they are useful programs. Anything suspicious is also sent automatically to Comodo for analysis.

    Comodo firewall feature also incorporate a port blocker to allow you to put all your ports in stealth mode.

    I run that and have three spyware scanners (Malwarebites, Superantispyware and Hitman Pro to do follow up scans in case Comodo misses anything (which it doesn’t seem to do oftem). Also throw in Panda Anti-Rootkit scanner for very fast periodic scanning and removal of rootkit infections.

    That should keep you safer.

  27. Penumbra  January 4, 2011 at 8:13 pm

    It doesn’t take more than the slightest criticism of the Zionist abomination to be denied entry into that zone, Michael. That is no endorsement for the trustworthiness of Chomsky.

    True on some matters I laud his work, particularly his expose of the nature of Manufactured Consent via mass media. However, when it comes to 911 (the most seminal geo-political agenda advancing event in the past 20-30 years), he refuses to even so much as acknowledge the evidence of both Mossad orchestration and insider US Gov’t collusion.

    This puts him squarely in the gatekeeper camp, taking his adoring fans only partway and leaving them bereft in a cul de sac of intellectual dishonesty and denial.

    This is precisely what Cockburn does as well.

    Shame you refuse to see that fact.

  28. Michael Leon  January 4, 2011 at 8:06 pm

    You guys are way off on Cockburn, Chomsky and CounterPunch.

    Otherwise, excellent coversation.

    Christ, Chomsky was not even allowed into occupied land (“security concerns”); not exactally popular in Israel.

    You would have a difficult time presenting a factual rebuttal to Chomsky and Cockburn’s analysis. Invective does not equate with argument.

  29. Bink  January 4, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    Gwynne Dyer is no revolutionary.
    He’s had a tall soap box to “preach” from especially in Canada – and never really rocks the boat.
    Come to think of it – When’s Amy Goodman going to have Richard Gage or David Chandler on her show ?

  30. Bink  January 4, 2011 at 7:46 pm

    I would add Max Keiser dot com.

    His latest RT show (post Jan 4) is a must see.

  31. Penumbra  January 4, 2011 at 7:44 pm

    I find Counterpunch to be increasingly aversive to analysis which emphasizes the primary actors behind many of issues we face, namely the organized Zionist criminality and its Rothschild/Rockefeller/et al. taskmasters. Mr. Cockburn does not pass the litmus test of a true investigative researcher, but rather more of a “left gatekeeper” in the mold of Noam Chomsky.

    As for Chossudovsky, true he hasn’t written much of late on 9/11 but he is after all first foremost an economist and still writes on a raft of pertinent issues.

    As for wikileaks, that scam has been thoroughly exposed as a Mossad psy-op. I caution avoidance of it altogether as slanted, cherry-picked rubbish aimed at reinforcing an agenda of war (as Gordon and others here have repeatedly pointed out as well).

  32. Paul Balles  January 4, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    Many thanks for your suggestions. Yours is the kind of useful comment that makes the original article worth writing.

    Project Censored would make a useful addition, but WikiLeaks has been reliable enough to have government officials screaming bloody blue murder over the disclosures. While the information in the cables may not all be accurate, nobody has denied that the cables were sent as revealed.

    The Globalsearch suggestion is excellent. It would be interesting to know what makes CounterPunch “suspect” to you.

    Five years ago, I would have included Chossudovsky. I followed his excellent comments on 9/11, but I haven’t seen much of his recently.

    Again, thanks for your comments and suggestions.

  33. Penumbra  January 4, 2011 at 6:23 pm

    Paul, I would suggest removing the linked reference to “wikileaks” as any sort of credible alternative source for truthful information. You might replace it with “Project Censored” which I find to be quite good at digging up under-reported items of worth.

    Also, better than Counterpunch (which even Gordon would tell you is suspect) would be, a repository of excellent investigative journalism and analysis including writings of some of the regulars hosted here.

    As for your list of writers of note, I would add Michael Chossudovsky, whose writings were instrumental in waking me up to the ugly underbelly of the matrix, years ago.

    For solid factual info on the Middle East situation I would also advocate WRMEA or IHR, both of which tell the harsh truth about Israeli machinations and lies so pervasively spewed by the mainstream.

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