“Arbeit macht frei” – Work sets you free – was a common propaganda slogan by the National Socialists – the Nazis. America calls itself the “Leader of the Free World.” US bombing of the Middle East went by the code name “Mission Enduring Freedom”. The list of abuses of ‘Freedom’ is long and revealing: Freedom is often a euphemism for violence and irreparable damage. We say that “death sets us free” –not birth. Those who promise us “freedom” are often those who seek to enslave us. That’s because once they achieved their lofty goal, their so-called freedom infantilizes us; hence the revolutionary push-back: “Freedom from foreign influence.’ Pundits, non-experts, and journalists who often childishly insist on their right to the First Amendment – “Freedom of Expression” – will almost always be selling us snake-oil and gobbledygook: unsolicited opinions, fantastic make-belief, and sheer nonsense. On the other hand, those who have facts and evidences, or those who speak the demonstrable truth, do not need the Amendment at all or in the least of it. The following text is about our lawless and unelected media corporations that go about spreading lies, rumors, and propaganda for no other good reason than we –the public –have been domesticated to endure and fear the wrath of the Media God Freedom, its militant press soldiers, and its inquisitional mission of social justice: They do whatever they want to us! The German media, in a coordinated effort to imitate US media and the US ‘colonial master narrative’, during the last few years have completely lost touch with the nation and the need for information of the people. Instead, corrupt journalists use their supreme privilege in order to talk down on the citizenry, belittle the little man, publish hit pieces on critics or persons they don’t like, praise anyone who supports their crimes, and shovel down our throats images of ‘enemies everywhere.’ Anyone who says anything back is “moderated,” or else deleted, banned, and blacklisted on sight. The mass media are not going to change. It is not in their interest to change. Calls for “freedom from media tyranny” are understandably suppressed. Yes, it is media’s terror on the people; and it has only just begun…
BERLIN – The German media of matters, and the entire teutsche internet we may add, are profiting immensely from this new-found strategy of shaming, degrading, or disrespecting with impunity each and every nation, group, or individual they don’t like –from Muslims, Chinese, Greeks, Russians, to Syrian refugees, foreign presidents, dissidents – everyone who doesn’t have the “correct” views, political beliefs, or religious faith…all in the name of our so-called “Freedom of the Press.” And if anyone says anything back, the press hears nothing.
Our agenda-driven journalists’ callous motto seems to be “Better to join the bullies than being the bullied.” Who are the supreme bullies these days? The thugs of ‘US foreign policy’ and ‘German Leitkultur’. Maybe the US-led ‘Western world dominance’ brought this insanity about. Maybe capitalism has caused our desolate human condition. Or, maybe it is the simple fact that we humans are too many: Sowing contempt and attacking everyone outside one’s own little circle of loyalty is evolutionary hardwired, psychologically rewarding, and ridiculously effective (in terms of financial success). It certainly is highly entertaining.
THE German ‘Verfassung’ famously begins: “The dignity of man is inviolable.” It ought to have ended “unless the press was doing it.” Little coincidence that racist and irresponsible ‘Charlie Hebdo’, the French satire magazine, is celebrated by the German mass media as martyrs of press freedom. [Some of Hebdo’s editors were assassinated by Islamists during a mass shooting in January 2015.] The media preaches totalitarian press freedom especially if it targets Islam. The media supported the invasions of Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, and Syria – the Global War on Terror. Terror and Freedom –those things go together now. In fact, Western mass media in support of Western terror hails this terror as a fight for the expression of freedom. Terror leads to freedom – as long as we do it.
Monkey see, monkey do. Every journalist, freelancer, or blogger in our republic now feels tempted to unleash the “independent thinker” in himself onto the world and wants to demolish some truth or tradition. That common folks are pitilessly trampled on like pastry insects seems a worthwhile sport. ‘Press Freedom’, in this context, is deadly religion at work (from Latin religare – to bind) far more despotic and willfully arbitrary than the European inquisition of the last millennium. In the name of ‘Freedom’ we ruthlessly combat non-Western elements and entire civilizations –their governments, their nations, and their people.
Illiterates and demonstrable idiots are dispatched to the foreign offices in Beijing, Tokyo, and New Delhi, who are then compelled and predisposed to produce fabulous guesswork and write complete nonsense about their foreign host. The publisher is happy as long as it serves the Western conspiracy theory that those Eastern governments are oppressive, the people are unfree, and their nations troubled and on the brink of doom.
But it is at the home front where the media’s uber-arrogance truly shines: Coping with an impossibly unfair world in which actors, con-artists, gangsters, fiction writers, and sly entrepreneurs always win (because they cause they leave the deepest impressions), and doers are always one step ahead of the naysayers (because they often break the rules), even the most mediocre journalist will soon come to realize that it is the uncreative, ethical, and honest people who are the true idiots in our species. Naturally, the commentators, columnists, and broadcaster want to leave a dint in world history. And the surefire way for them to do that is by offending and disrupting the lives of as many people as possible. Because only then will the folks remember the writer’s name.
LITTLE wonder then, that our most experienced journalists turn into cynics and monsters who rise up late and go to bed late, tortured by a burning remorse that they haven’t figured out the cruel game much earlier in their career and became forces of nature already, knowing very well that they will never be notables or great writers simply because they are not “Eastern political prisoners or puppet dissidents in exile.” It’s known as the journalist’s curse: Same principle that is responsible for why those foreign places are miraculously crowded with dictators and tyrants, but this time it’s about the “good” guys over there – they are as big as giants, bigger even:
Why, you didn’t know that writers also project their pride and self-adulation onto their writings? And because they cannot insert themselves into the story (mostly, some do of course), and because they would be stupid to promote their rivals and competitors, they instead deflect their irrational praise and senseless adulation onto the most unrelated, most distant, and most foreign person at the other side of the world they can possibly detect: some cuss in Russia, some party pooper in China, anyone? That’s why our enemies do not only chin the most despicable despots and bizarre autocrats; they also regularly beat the best poets and human rights activists. Imagine that.
This isn’t exactly rocket science. Any profession has its fall-outs. We study those fall-outs, and regulate the profession. Except the journalist’s profession. Doctors, lawyers, scientists, teachers, engineers, civil servants… nobody can do whatever they want. They are all regulated professions. Except the journalists. They write shiz and keech and call that a universal right. Most disciplines have been revolutionized in the last 300 years. We’ve long been having it away with all those alchemists, mystics, quacks, and charlatans. Except with journalists. They always stayed the same old tale-teller they’d always been…wait, they even call themselves now “the Fourth Pillar of Democracy.”
We are not the only ones who see the media as a deadly weapon against our foes. Our dear leaders see that too: Hence the notion of ‘press soldiers’ –legions of “foreign correspondents” who are subverting foreign cultures and distort reality any way they please, “scoring goals against enemy teams” and fabricating foreign “heroes” and “saviors” useful to the Western cause. And if the foreign nations complain about the intrusion, our press soldiers are having a field day, texting back to their commanders in chief that they face heavy suppression at the press front, asking for political support (or military intervention, if the target country is weak and defenseless).
THE print media –BILD, Die ZEIT, FAZ, Spiegel, and Sueddeutsche, to name a few- are now unanimously known as “Lügenpresse” –the Lying Press. They are despised by millions. They shamelessly circulate their own political views and their own ideologies and quote certain people they knew would say certain things, pretending to mirror the will of the people. Nobody believes our chief journalists any more – especially not in the age of the internet, where people witness and share facts and figures that often prove the very opposite of what the media has carefully manufactured and spoon-fed to what it thought were “the gullible masses.”
Birds of the same feather fly together: The large news corporations, owned by a few families all in bed with US interests, are now competing with the entertainment industry for shock value, sensation, and bling-bling. Forget about the facts. In Sachsen they are all racists. We are mocking humanity by saying that darkness is light and death is proof. Why, because darkness and death bring anxiety, fear, and misery –the stuff that the media thrives on. Charlie Hebdo’s Islam-bashing was just, they say, and their being killed made them right. “Do we now have your attention?!”
In a world of preposterous pseudoscience and dogmatism like this where science, logic, and reason are dismissed by unelected journalists who have little knowledge about the things they write about and tax on xenophobic agitprop that reaches a million souls, it is little wonder that the permanent consumers of this propaganda suffer from psychological distress and the mortal fear of possibly becoming the next target. Their worries are real. Germany is a police state, and the media, politicians, and the secret service work hand in hand to ensure they stay in power permanently. A few brave men revolt, perhaps, but are crushed at once. The rest weep in silent corners.
Our reckless media play on human instincts of verbal abuse – often without regard to facts and veracity – such as rumor, lies, and defamation. It perpetuates and spins social dread and suspicion, say, by accusing whomever the credulous public is ready to believe could be our next enemy: Fascists, right-wing extremists, anti-Semitists, jihadists, and just bad Germans. What do we accuse the enemy of? Precisely what we do to him: truth-telling, well-poisoning, and terrorism: “He’s offended our feelings!” How to spot an enemy all by yourself? It is him who exists to annoy us, who represses our goodwill, who begs us for pissing on him. We must immediately disgrace this person in public and drag him to the Court of public opinion.
For whatever political calculi, our Minister of Foreign Affairs, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, believes it is perfectly respectable to stigmatize Islam as a religion of the anti-West, over and over again, like a self-fulfilling prophecy. Just like the Europeans once deemed the Slavish race as barbaric, the Chinese race as godless, or the Jewish creed as baby-eaters; only that this time our contempt and ill-will is performed in an almost cult-like conviction that “we European journalists must call our enemies what they truly deserve.” These massive journalistic ‘attack of impugnity’, or shall we say the rampant ‘disrespect for all other traditions and life forms’, must indeed be the surest proof that ‘ultimate freedom’ is humanly attainable: “I feel so free today, I could call YOU the plague of Europe!”
IN SUCH a dystopian ‘freedom hell’ not only do journalists get addicted to the shame game, they also get paranoid. They must be. Expert knowledge becomes a nuisance, because it belittles the freedom to tell effective untruths. Facts become suspicious, because they are limiting human potential for bogus and baloney. Reciprocity – the chance that our enemies might get a platform of their own and say anything to us in retaliation – is the nightmare that’s driving away every journalist’s sleep: We’ve messed up someone’s life, ruined this people, and mocked them pitilessly if we succeeded. And we got paid for this. If our nasty scheme gets busted one day, if people investigate us, there could be a reckoning…
Believing that they are persons to whom more was allowed than others, the defenders of the ‘press freedom’ are looking for legitimacy in outer space –the universe. Freedom of speech is a “universal human right,” they say. But observe what happens when hammer hits the anvil: Criticism of the media is oppression of the media of course. And if more than three people do it, it is harassment. “They must be the enemies of freedom!” The media quickly become the “universal” victim and cries “Help, help, somebody help me!” Complaints will create drama, and drama calls attention, and attention is a whore. Crooked politicians in white shining armor will come to the rescue in the hope to win the damsel’s favor. If ten or more people debunk what the media said, strict moderation is called for, bans must be issued, and comments are being deleted. The media must be free from the people’s pestering. It’s not ‘censorship’ if the media does it: There must never be an open and level playing field of free speech for everyone. [“God help us if the 1.2 million Muslims in Germany we accused of backwardness get to publish op-eds; or the 1.37 billion Chinese we wronged get to write in our comments section…”] The media is free not to publish YOU, suckers!
“Freedom of expression,” we’ve said it before, resembles a colonial master’s monologue that mocks the lives of the master’s servants. Of course, the master feels “free” to push around his underlings any way he wants. Meanwhile, in Germany, speaking one’s mind carelessly ends with joblessness, loss of trust, face, and social status. A plethora of expressions are outlawed, such as hate speech, libel, slander, and defamation. Businessmen must be honest. Academicians must be truthful. Politicians must be diplomatic. Love your neighbor. Show empathy. Codes of conducts in every profession. Dependencies in every family. Responsibilities in every situation. Everywhere we look there are boundaries to what humans are permitted to do. It is only the media that gets a free pass. Their ‘freedom’ is a total asshole.
How does the public protect itself from this incredible imbalance and mind-blowing privilege of the unelected, arrogant few? Buy protest, rant, demonstrations? How, the media will cast them off as troglodytes and human scum. So the people turn to the internet, the forums, websites, and alternative media. The mass media responds with slander and libel, calling those places breeding space for extremist, non-democratic forces. Whatever the public does, the media will prosecute them, line them up, and shoot them down. It is a metaphor. The revengeful media now co-opt German politicians to crush down on dissent and censor them in the so-called ‘social networks’, all of which are US companies dressed as global public services. So far, the United States are not impressed. If however the public were to rise against the corrupt German media and its complicit government, and if the US-Anglophone media were to side with the enraged “free” people, Germany could easily become the next failed state.
It is impossible, in these days, to define ‘censorship’ without pointing the finger to the media that does it. A world without censorship is a world without the media. At best, German fraudulent so-called ‘freedom of speech’ is a small theater with reserved seats for the privileged; at worse it is a tight military branch composed of disposable foot soldiers, powerful generals, and supreme commanders in service of the nation-state. Either way, freedom of speech a white German’s ass if it doesn’t serve his master’s interest. It would be the ‘End of all things’ if the servants were to do onto us what we did onto them.
TO IGNORE the media is the financial ruin of the media, of course. It is the only “business” in Germany that comes to your living room and pisses in all four corners. Then it says it was good for you, because it could have gotten much worse –if you hadn’t paid the piper, that is. The journalists are the last criminal syndicate. They have no other legitimacy than selling us their cottage freedom for profit by intimidation. The media isn’t liked; it cannot be voted away. No surprise the majority of the readers feels sick and tired of the media’s gratuitous dose of daily terror.
Most of us depend on the mass media, if only to frequently check what they are up to, and pray it won’t affect us personally, or our families. Besides, how can anybody seriously question ‘Press freedom’? From the point of view of the evangelical West, freedom is the creator, the son, and the holy spirit. The entire tale of humanity is Hegel’s worldspirit going were freedom leads to. Who could possibly otherwise tolerate our endless manipulation, spouts of gut-wrenching hypocrisy, and sweet reign of terror if it wasn’t done in the name of Lord Press Freedom? See, nobody forces us to treat you like insects and worms; we do so because we can.
Thor Tukoll is a pen name of Thorsten J. Pattberg, a German writer and cultural critic. He is the author of The East-West Dichotomy, Shengren, and Inside Peking University.
2015 (c) Thor Tukoll