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-- Representative Bernie Sanders, US Congressman, Vermont.
-"The truth of the matter is that increasingly, what we see, what we hear, and what we read is being controlled by fewer and fewer large, multi-national corporations."
-- John Swinton, editor of the New York Tribune, in the 1880s, at a banquet of his fellow editors.
There is no such thing in America as an independent press, unless it is in the country towns.
You know it and I know it. There is not one of you who dares to writes (sic) his honest opinions, and if you did you know beforehand that it would never appear in print.
I am paid one hundred and fifty dollars a week for keeping my honest opinions out of the paper I am connected with--others of you are paid similar salaries for similar things--and any of you who would be so foolish as to write his honest opinions would be out on the streets looking for another job.
The business of the New York journalist is to destroy the truth, to lie outright, to pervert, to vilify, to fawn at the feet of Mammon, and to sell his race and his country for his daily bread.
You know this and I know it, and what folly is this to be toasting an "Independent Press."
We are the tools and vassals of rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping-jacks; they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes."
-- Sam Donaldson, ABC correspondent.
-"The press ... traditionally sides with authority and the establishment."
-- Mark Crispin Miller, Professor of Media Studies at New York University.
-"There's an apposite quote from Dr. Goebbels. 'What you want in a media system is austensible diversity that conceals an actual uniformity'"
Who owns the news?
1) GENERAL ELECTRIC - NBC
* NBC: Owns outright 13 stations and many affiliates, Market penetration: 28% of US households.
* NBC Network News: Owns The Today Show, Nightly News with Tom Brokaw, Meet the Press, Dateline.
* CNBC business network, MSNBC 24-hour cable and Internet news service (co-owned by both NBC and Microsoft); Court TV (co-owned with Time Warner), Bravo (50%), A&E (25%), History Channel (25%).
The MS in MSNBC stands for Microsoft, Bill Gate's Microsoft donated 2.4 million in 2000 to get George W Bush elected.
* GE Consumer Electronics and Household Products and components used in military electronics..
* GE Power Systems, which makes turbines for nuclear reactors, wind turbines, "clean" coal technology.
* GE Plastics: produces military hardware for fighter jets, ships and nuclear power equipment.
* GE Transportation Systems: manufactures engines and diesel and electric locomotives.
2) WESTINGHOUSE / CBS INC.
* CBS: Owns outright 14 stations and over 200 affiliates in the US.
* CBS Network News: 60 minutes, 48 hours, CBS Evening News, CBS Morning News.
* Country Music Television, The Nashville Network.
* Group W Satellite Communications.
* Westinghouse Electric Company: provides services to the nuclear power industry including owning 4 nuclear plants, waste disposal and transport.
3) DISNEY - ABC
* ABC: includes 10 stations outright, many affiliates, Penetration in the market: 24% of US households.
* ABC Network News: Prime Time Live, Nightline, 20/20, Good Morning America.
* ESPN, Lifetime Television (50%), as well as smaller holdings in A&E, History Channel and E!
* Disney Channel/Disney Television, Touchtone Television.
Other Major Media Holdings.
* Miramax, Touchtone Pictures.
* Major Magazines: Jane, Los Angeles Magazine, Discover.
* Three recording labels, twelve major local newspapers.
* Hyperion books.
* Infoseek search engine.
Major shareholders include Sid R. Bass, oil and gas baron.
4) TIME-WARNER TBS - AOL
* CNN, HBO, Cinemax, TBS Superstation, Turner Network Television, Turner Classic Movies, Warner Brothers Television, Cartoon Network, Sega Channel, TNT, Comedy Central.
* Largest cable system owner with an estimated 13 million households.
* HBO Productions, Warner Home Video, New Line Cinema, Castle Rock, Looney Tunes, Hanna-Barbera.
* Music: Atlantic, Elektra, Rhino, Sire, Warner Bros. Records, EMI.
* Thirty three major magazines including Time, Sports Illustrated, People Magazine, In Style, Fortune, The Book of the Month Club, Entertainment Weekly, Life Magazne, DC Comics, MAD Magazine.
Other major corporation Holdings:
* Sports Teams and Wrestling: The Atlanta Braves, The Atlanta Hawks, World Championship Wrestling.
5) NEWS CORPORATION LTD. / FOX NETWORKS
Major Television Holdings:
* Fox Television: includes 22 major and many affiliate stations, Penetration into more than 60% of US households.
* Fox International: extensive worldwide cable and satellite networks include British Sky Broadcasting (40%); VOX, Germany (49.9%); Canal Fox, Latin America; FOXTEL, Australia (50%); STAR TV, Asia, IskyB, India; Bahasa Programming Ltd., Indonesia (50%); and News Broadcasting, Japan (80%), major owner of DirecTV.
* The Golf Channel (33%).
Other Major Media Hodings:
* Twentieth Century Fox, Fox Searchlight.
* 132 major newspapers (113 in Australia alone) including the New York Post, the London Times and The Australian.
* Owns 25 magazines including TV Guide and The Weekly Standard.
* Owns HarperCollins books.
Othe Major Corporation Holdings around the word:
* Sports: LA Dodgers, LA Kings, LA Lakers, National Rugby League.
* Ansett Australia airline, Ansett New Zealand airlines.
* Rupert Murdoch is on the Board of Directors of Philip Morris, a major Bush donor.
The mass media serve as a system for communicating messages and symbols to the general populace. It is their function to amuse, entertain, and inform, and to inculcate individuals with the values, beliefs, and codes of behavior that will integrate them into the institutional structures of the larger society. In a world of concentrated wealth and major conflicts of class interest, to fulfill this role requires systematic propaganda.