Friday, May 10, 2013

How the Media Prevents Meaningful Discussion About the Environment

Alex Pietrowski
Activist Post

For a normal human being who understands the value of having clean air and water to consume, clean soil to grow food in, and of living in a habitat that can support life, it is frustrating to watch one environmental calamity occur, after another without ever seeing a mainstream, non-politicized conversation about the condition of our natural world. It seems that merely expressing concern over the direction the environment is going is enough to solicit a number of stigmatized labels, such as hippie, liberal, terrorist, downer, debbie-downer, slacker, tree-hugger, climate changer, Al Gore, global warmer, Agenda 21′er, and so on. There is an extreme cultural bias against environmentalism, from many angles. Environmentalism is not a public priority.

What is at the root of this indifference toward the quality of our natural world? We certainly are a society that is highly preoccupied with security, but, for some reason, when it comes to securing a healthy environment, most of us look the other way, or put these concerns well below others.

THE CONVERSATION

The public conversation on any popular issue in America today is led by a handful of media companies who provide ‘news’ and ‘debate’ on the selected topics of each day. In this way, a narrow and focused message is syndicated across America, and we hear the same news and information repeated, often verbatim, by local, state, and national media. The model of a consolidated media, working for profit, bringing us an endless narrative, is very effective at setting societal priorities, at supporting hidden agendas, and at coloring the truth on any issue.

Lying by omission is one of the most effective ways of hiding the truth. By simply not mentioning an issue, then, effectively, a lie is told that the issue is irrelevant. The total picture of the truth is manipulated in this way by our mainline media, making it unlikely for consumers of media to connect the dots about environmental issues, linking their long term fall out to developments in policy and disaster clean up.


By effectively omitting critical issues from the ongoing public conversation, this most important subject is rendered unimportant, or the illusion is created that the environment is under responsible stewardship by the proper authorities. The media plays a significant role in shaping how this nation reacts to environmental catastrophes, and time and again the tactic of lying by omission is used against us to obfuscate the truth about what is happening to our natural world.

WHO STANDS TO GAIN?

Over the course of the last century our society has been heavily influenced to value a consumer oriented way of life over traditional ways of living. Our economy is driven by consumption, and the mainline media reinforces our dependence on and desire for this lifestyle by continuously reiterating the enjoyment and value to be had in acquiring more things. If the public were to lose interest in this lifestyle, this economy would collapse entirely.

As the primary sales agent of our consumeristic cultural paradigm, the media absolutely must refrain from demonstrating how our consumer based lifestyle lays waste to the earth, jeopardizing health and wellness for all. Our mainline media must do their best to camouflage this crisis in order to keep itself alive, in order to keep it’s coiffeurs filled, and in order to keep all those involved employed. A catch-22 of Biblical proportions.

For this, the prevailing manner of reporting on the environment issues has become to ignore all stories about the environment except the ones too big not to mention, then to brush those off the radar with haste. Once an environmental story is gone from the front page it is rarely ever mentioned again, even though the effects of environmental catastrophes are felt much later than the actual event.

WHAT DOTS?

The point of omitting environmental issues from the discussion is to inhibit people from connecting the dots on how the pattern of serious environmental destruction is directly related to the way of life being touted by the media. If people connect the dots, they may see how participation in the economy and this way of life is participation in ecocide, and thus, suicide. Upon realizing this, they may go further to make the connection that life is more important than the quest for wealth and materialism, and change their personal behavior to support the things which support life, rather than supporting the things which extract, pollute, and rape this wonderful earth.

If too many people change their behavior, then this economic system will collapse.

At present there are a number of extremely critical environmental issues that are going largely unaddressed by our policy makers and so-called leaders. As a service to the conversation about the quality of our world and the quality of our health, here is a list of the top 20 environmental issues routinely omitted by the mainstream media.
  • Fukushima
  • The Gulf of Mexico Core Exit Oil Spill
  • Tar Sands Athabasca
  • Appalachian Mountain Top Removal
  • Depleted Uranium
  • Nuclear Energy
  • Pipeline Spills
  • Fracking
  • Air Pollution
  • Genetic Modification of Plants and Animals
  • Soil Depletion and Erosion From Mass Agriculture
  • Electro-Magenetic Pollution
  • Widespread Pollution of the Oceans
  • Sea-life Die Off and the Collapse of Ocean Fish Colonies
  • Rainforest Destruction for Industrial Agriculture and Oil Exploration
  • Water Pollution
  • Widespread Overuse of Pesticides and Herbicides
  • Trash and Landfills
  • Animal Poaching and Species Extinction
  • Please Add Anything Not On This List to the Comments Section Below
Perhaps seeing all this in one place will help support the overall picture of where our lives are going if we continue to sideline and ridicule any meaningful public discussion about how our lifestyles support the destruction of the natural world. Without pigeon holing concerned people into labels like, commie, collectivist, dirt worshipper, liberal, eco-terrorist, or whatever. against our long term interests of having a planet that can sustain and and is worth living on.

CONCLUSION

Connecting the dots on these issues raises the question of how these issues are inter-connected. The continuous thread that runs through each of these calamities is an industrial hubris that seeks, first and foremost, ever-increasing profit. This is supported by governments, both corrupt and manipulated by economic hitmen. Behind this lies the arrogant human assumption that human beings are somehow separate from the earth and it’s creatures, and somehow in control of the natural forces of the world.

Whether you want to call it global warming, climate change, industrial accidents, unfortunate events, mismanagement, or what have you, the fact remains that our natural world is becoming increasingly toxic and the future for our children looks rather dim without a mass awakening and acceptance of this issue as a top social priority. As the natural world continues to degrade, it will eventually become impossible for the media and industry to hide the extent of the damage that is being done, no matter what illusions we are spoonfed.

Simple, common-sense environmentalism shouldn’t be reserved for political hacks like Al Gore or globalist supporters of Agenda 21. You shouldn’t have to be a carbon credit trader to be concerned about the radiation leak at Fukushima, and you don’t have to be a Rothschild to understand that oil in the backyard isn’t good for the family dog.

As individuals it is up to each of us to re-think our dependance on consumer culture and reinvent how we relate to the natural world. For inspiration on this, please view this thought-provoking talk by Sebastião Salgado.



Alex Pietrowski is an artist and writer concerned with preserving good health and the basic freedom to enjoy a healthy lifestyle. He is a staff writer for WakingTimes.com and an avid student of Yoga and life.


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8 comments:

djohnston said...

Chemtrails could come under the air pollution umbrella, but I think it deserves a separate entry.

Jon David Miller said...

You missed one of the most important environmental issues - stratospheric aerosol geo-engineering, aka "chemtrails". Toxic metals, including radioactive ones, and more harmful items, are being quietly sprayed in our skies several days a week. See www.chemtrailer.com for details.

Anonymous said...

I agree that the climate change is a serious current event that needs a Non-political review. However, two points are very difficult to address:
1.- mountains of data can be used to show human cause to the devastation, yet as much or more can be used to show a natural cause. Even some environmental scientists agree to that (including at NASA). Between massive volcanic eruptions like Krakatoa in 1883 (definitely natural) and cloud seeding activities in the last 50 yrs (definitely human)b with at least 80+ countries around the world participating, it may not be so much our way of life being the primary culprit. Which leads to-
2.- the developments and policies being made in the name of "sustainability" (complete control of all resources, food production, water, transportation, education, human activity, etc.) make it hard to have a meaningful conversation since what may be meaningful to you is not to me, or - even a direct threat to my very existence (population control methods). What I mean is, if climate change did not exist, it would be necessary to invent it.

Anonymous said...

How about "Honey Bee Colony Collapse" (the extinction of bees that, for thousands of years, have played an integral role in pollinating our food crops)? The die-off of honey bees threatens the viability of agriculture, and our society's ability to grow food crops! It's not known exactly what the causes are, but toxic pesticides and cell phone tower radiation are highly suspect. Instead of discovering a viable solution to whatever is killing our bees, Harvard University was given research funds to create a mechanical honey bee to replace the honey bees after they have all died off! Apparently, the needle of America's "moral compass" is spinning in circles!

Anonymous said...

This is an important article; or, at least, I think it introduces an important discussion for us to have.
Unfortunately, it (naively) omits the central reason why "environmentalism" has hit a dead-end-wall today: the movement has been CO-OPTED (taken over) by the corporate press and the-powers-that-be.
You can't watch TV or go to the grocery store today without seeing countless ads for all things "green." And this gives many people who care just a little, (not enough to get scared and DO something about it) the luxury of THINKING they're part of the solution.

That "things" are "not so bad"... (that is, besides the 'environmental' issue, lol, ever getting worse... for SOME reason).

For example, there's (well-intentioned) people like the actor Robert Redford,
(http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/robert-redford-obama-environment-climate-change-393109)
who, makes an impassioned plea for conservation in general; and yet... still blinded by his naivete that Obama is anything but a complete and utter fraud. i.e., he's not prepared to see the dirty dirt of the HUMAN social-political structure. (It's f__ked. We're f___ked if we don't have the courage to face it).

Then there's the infiltration and corruption (by the state) of the biggest environmental organizations, which turns our concerns down easy, safe-sounding... dead-end (and/or divisive) channels.
Take "global warming" for example. I have no doubt that 200 yrs. of the industrial age have wrought major repercussions to our biosphere, (as noted above); yet there's ALSO no doubt (?) that cowardly fraudsters like AL Gore are USING the problem to advance an agenda that will only strengthen their fellow Elite (and keep the people down) and keep the environmental abuse... worsening.
Yet amongst the biggest environmental groups, (and anti-war, social-justice, activists, etc) you can't even question the "global warming consensus" without being called a "climate-denier," (though there certainly are a number of oil-interests trying to muddy the water as well).
And this stubborn resistance to a healthy debate, has given many fellow citizens, patriots, libertarians, and even environmental activists a reason to COOL to the MOVEMENT, (as it's presently defined... structured)
In other words, the "environmentalists" themselves are largely to blame for their increasing marginalisation... because, on some level, they've been willing to play it SAFE; here, hiding behind the "motherhood" issue, (using dubious phrases like "climate justice") in many cases taking money from the corporations for short-term gains.
In trying to make "going green" sound EASY, they've made it more difficult.
Still, I think the vast majority of environment-minded (nature-loving) people are intelligent, well-intentioned, principled folk, who have a depth-connection to remind us of; a gift of... attention, to the physical body on which we all stand; and, if we show some respect and appreciation for that sense of care... they carry... then perhaps they'll be more willing to open to the deeper, more-disturbing... pressing problems that we see... having to do with the HUMAN challenge in between... then we can move on the question of the task which unites all concerned... stewardship.

Yes?

Great website.

Thanks to all who care to get involved,
to whatever degree.

:)

Anonymous said...

The elephant in the living room is overpopulation of the human species. Reliable, effective contraception became available in 1964, yet our population has doubled since 1950. The religious have greatly contributed to this problem. The religious also contribute to the idea that a supernatural power will come and rescue humans and save us, so why worry about saving Earth? We were just beginning to break the taboo of discussing overpopulation and then the topic was highjacked by Agenda 21er's. We can not blame the 1% for everything. Common sense would tell you not to bring a child into this hell. But does it stop people? hell no, they breed like rabbits. They "love their children" so much. right. That's why they work so hard to make the world a better place. They just want to fulfill selfish cultural scripts, sold to them by the mind/money machine, and make little mini-ME's. I would like to experience overpopulation being discussed without accusations of hating humanity. The illuminati won't "cull" us. We will cull ourselves because we are over-reproducing at the rate of a cancer.

brad said...

Every planetary problem (and all environmental ones) which are not caused by ethnic and religious bigotry/idiocy, are caused by wealthy people running corporations and dedicing policies which damage the planet.
Whether this is the major shareholders who sway the investment direction, the executive branch, or the mgmt, these decisions are made by corporate rich people, and inflicted upon primarily we the people.
Refutations?

LadyRavenhaire said...

No, we are not breeding like rabbits due to religion. Religion serves the ruling class. It is not the other way around. Capitalism is based upon markets. It is based upon a pyramid scheme. You need an ever growing population to sell your goods to & also provide so much surplus labor to keep labor costs down. Our main problem is capitalism, a system of government based on capital, I.e. profits. As long as their is a profit to be made, the system, which is like an iron gate will continue to destroy & exploit. Environmentalists & the Left in this country are going to continue to fight 40 different environmental causes at every moment, used to divert our resources & prevent us from unifying, as long as capitalism exists. We need to wake up and demand as working class people the right to a government that represents what is best for the population and the earth. Why are we supporting a government that only concerns itself with 1% of the population reaping massive profits at the expense of everything in this living planet, including ourselves? Make a difference and join a wealth of new movements from Deep Green Resistance, Ideological Fightback, Workers World, etc. I've even heard there is a movement to make the Green Party that is now a capitalist front party, to become once again a Left environmental group.

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