Editor’s Note: This is a very thought-provoking piece, in my opinion, and deserves serious consideration. I doubt an editorial like this will be found in mainstream media. In fact, some will label it conspiracy theory. But it sounds rational to me. After all, some conspiracies actually do exist.
By Alden Bond
Stories don’t just appear in the news.
Editors decide what is newsworthy and the perspective that will be offered on a given topic. This is what we call a narrative, it’s how the facts are shaped for public consumption.
Sometimes, the narrative shifts in response to public outcry or a disaster. Other times, it’s more deliberate, a reflection of the official positions of elites and institutions with an interest in shaping public opinion to suit their ends.
As Henry Kissinger used to say, America doesn’t have friends, it has interests. The media is our chief tool of steering them.
In the wake of George Floyd’s death, American journalism has experienced a radical shift in perspective.
Journalists are suddenly questioning the need for police and calling them brutal enforcers of a racist regime.
Television shows and cartoons that feature police officers are being cancelled for glorifying violence.
There’s claims of widespread systemic racism in law enforcement along with narratives like the 1619 Project, which won a Pulitzer for claims about America being a nation founded on slavery that continues to today.
Protests against police violence are happening in the midst of a pandemic and participants are being called peaceful protestors while they start fires and deliberately try to provoke response from public safety personnel – firefighters, EMTs and police have all been subject to attacks from the mob.
Academics, writers, and public leaders are being forced out of public life for questioning these views, or for not endorsing them full-throatedly, or for having said something 10 years ago that still happens to be online.
It all seems odd, this perception we must change our attitudes or face real physical threats to our safety.
As cities burn, “Silence is violence” is a common refrain, and (if you look carefully at the graffiti going up in LA, NYC and DC) you will also see this phrase: “Liberals get the bullet first.”
As we watch the purges happen and listen to the slogans, it’s useful to stand back and think about the superstructure that produces these expressions of rage and deep skepticism.
In 2016, Donald Trump was elected with the promise of fighting the Deep State. The Deep State felt threatened, and the public has lived with a constant state of political crisis ever since. These crises are manufactured by recognizable names in media and politics, and there’s a way to understand the recent shifts in journalism as an extension of this conflict.
The master narrative, right now, seems to be that all white men are evil, our system of government is irredeemably racist, and only anti-racism (read: Communism) can save people from the original sin of oppressing minorities. This view is being pushed in all major media outlets including – surprisingly – Fox News.
Conspicuously, it’s being pushed right in the middle of an election, while investigations into government corruption are going on, and during times of elevated tensions with China. The context matters, there’s a series of events and economic conditions that have lead us to this point. As we are being asked to examine ourselves and society at this time and at this place, finding good answers means it’s more important than ever to question what you think and hear.
Who Is The Deep State?
People mean different things when they say the Deep State.
For the purposes of this article, let’s take it to mean a group of people in government with the ability to carry out operations counter to the interests of the Administration. They can create false information, leak conversations to the press, kick off investigations without merit, frame officials, initiate impeachment processes without evidence, and more.
The media works together this group to hyperbolically criticize their targets while lionizing the Deep State actors themselves. Together, this alliance forms a syndicate whose real motivations and purpose, outside monopolizing power, are difficulty to understand.
Journalists at the Epoch Times took the time to document the relationships between bad actors in the Spygate conspiracy.
It’s big, it’s complex, and you’re not expected to take it all in at one time. But think about the names you do read and where you’ve heard them before. Was it about Russian election interference? Was it about a quid pro quo with Ukraine? Was it about a payments to a porn star? You know the name, but not many people know all of them.
The names on this list are the foot soldiers, the people working to carry out Deep State interests. Many of them were fired from government, often to howls of injustice from the Left. Some of them have gone on to jobs in media, people like Lisa Page.
It can certainly be lucrative. CNN won a Pulitzer for covering the midnight raid on Roger Stone’s house. Possibly this was her reward for the tipoff?
When you stop and think about it, one thing becomes clear. The names on this chart have each attempted to disrupt, obstruct and threaten members of the Executive Branch of the United States based on facts that don’t bear close scrutiny. The sheer volume of actions against the administration implies organization between its members, this could not be happening without a high level of coordination. It’s one of those truths that leaves you feeling invalidated, since it’s not allowed to be believed but so obvious to anyone with common sense.
That’s the Deep State. Americans want it gone, but it’s gotten worse than ever. Now it’s exposed and acting to protect itself, as power always does.
Who Sets The Narrative?
The Deep State could not exist without a complicit media. Maybe you’ve noticed President Trump has not had a good news day since 2016, even for developments that benefit all Americans. Maybe you’ve noticed stories about China interfering with the NBA and US games publishers fall out of the news cycle a little too quickly.
These things happen for a reason. Noam Chomsky famously said the press is owned by wealthy people with an interest in making sure only certain ideas are heard by the public. You will often hear journalists tell you they write anything they want, no one censors them. That may be true, but only insofar as they have already demonstrated a commitment to a certain worldview. The writers who generate controversy or hold unorthodox opinions never seem to make it in the news business.
There’s an organization called the Council on Foreign Relations. The odds are you’ve never heard of it. The heads of most major media organizations are members. Here’s a chart that describes the relationships that exist.
While this chart is a little dated and some of the names at the top have changed, no doubt their replacements are members as well.
CFR doesn’t just exist to report on foreign policy, it makes it.
In 1993, Washington Post editor Richard Harwood described the Council on Foreign Affairs as a group “whose members are the nearest thing we have to a ruling establishment in the United States.”
Every President since Reagan has been a member, along with most members of their cabinets, most leaders in the House and Senate, most leaders on Wall Street, many mainstream economists, along with prominent names in many other professions.
This is the nexus between government and media, as it has been since World War II. Every day, media outfits run by members reach more than 87% of the Western world, through televisions, newspapers, the Internet and other forms of information.
When I said every President since Reagan has been a member, that’s not actually true. President Trump is the single exception, and he’s overtly hostile to this framework that makes foreign policy and has been doing so since the late 40s. Somehow, he won in an election over one of their members. That’s never happened before and could be seen as a sign that something has changed.
Would an organization with this level of influence allow itself to be dismantled by a Disruptor in Chief? Hardly. Can this explain the persistent institutional narratives constantly broadcast across all US media?
An even better question: has waning Western influence caused the CFR to lose its allegiance to the Western World? Let’s come back to that one.
How Does This Explain The Changes in the Dominant Media Narrative?
Several things about George Floyd’s death are concerning. It’s terrible that he died and that doesn’t change just because of facts that came up in the post-mortem.
But every mainstream media outlet described his death in the same terms – as a horrible, senseless tragedy and a brutal police action that happens all too often in the United States. Which is not exactly controversial. The only place the media seems to differ is on whether or not this is evidence of systemic racism. Liberals seem to believe so, Conservatives not so much.
Assuming dominant media narratives exist and are used to achieve policy goals, a few things can be assumed.
First, the media response to events was a political action, it was meant to move the Overton window significantly on issues of race and social justice. No other death in police custody has received this kind of response.
Second, the differences in opinion about the presence of systemic racism may represent controlled opposition. During the riots, we saw politicians and community leaders bowing down to mobs in the street. This sent a signal of solidarity and orthodoxy – anyone who doesn’t agree is a bad person.
Third is the question of whether the video we’ve seen depicts what actually occurred. I accept the videos display events that happened in real life, this isn’t some CGI simulation. But is it possible the video doesn’t tell the whole story? Possibly. The autopsy revealed a few things to consider.
The toxicology report said George Floyd died with 11 ng/mL of Fentanyl and 5.6 ng/mL of Norfentanyl in his system. 11ng/mL would be a high amount and not necessarily enough to kill someone, you see about 20 ng/mL in most overdoses.
But Fentanyl metabolizes into Norfentanyl in the bloodstream, and it happens fast. Seeing both there indicates he recently used the drug in higher quantities than still existed in his system. Was it a lethal dose? Possibly. Fentanyl deaths can occur at anything above 15ng/mL and that much was present in the body.
Another question to consider is why hasn’t the police body cam footage been released? When other people have died during encounters with police, most families want the body cam footage released immediately. That hasn’t happened, yet Minnesota AG Keith Ellison took over the prosecution, increased the charges on the officers involved and indicated there are no plans to release the footage.
One would assume there’s more to be learned from viewing the tapes that points to the guilt or innocence.
These are important questions when you consider whether the media is using a dominant narrative to pursue policy goals.
By increasing the charges against the officers involved, the State could be creating a situation where the officers are less likely to be found guilty. If the officers are instead acquitted, what happens to America’s faith in the criminal justice system?
By creating the perception no one can get justice from the courts, this leads to further calls for radical change along with protestors burning cities. We start to see calls to Defund the Courts/Defund Prisons and put the money into community programs instead.
One might expect more cities to burn. We should assume that’s a possible intent.
What Was Trump Doing When the Riots Started
If the Council on Foreign Relations has the kind of influence that has been claimed, it’s hard to understand why it would allow a narrative that all white men are evil, our country is racist, and only anti-racism can cure our systemic ills.
One possibility is this group decided to give up trying to set narratives. Social media has so fragmented the media landscape, it’s impossible to hide the truth so why bother. Just let people argue and see where things end up. Another possibility: the Council on Foreign Relations has become a corrupt institution. They are manufacturing political outcomes to serve the goals of a foreign power.
On May 29, 2020, just as the riots were kicking off, President Trump gave a speech in the Rose Garden. It’s available on YouTube.
He announced the US would be withdrawing from the WHO, Chinese students from military colleges would be prohibited from doing post-grad work in the US, and Hong Kong would lose its special status as an international hub if it proceeded with implementing a new security law.
This puts both countries into direct conflict on issues that affect most other countries on Earth.
While each of his announcements are important, that last one means more than the others. A lot more.
Removing Hong Kong’s special status cuts off China’s main financial conduit to the West. It’s the equivalent of backing a dump truck to someone’s front door, it means there’s not a good way in or out for capital. It’s also a loss of face for Chinese leadership, in a culture that does not take failure lightly.
Immediately afterwards, starting that night, cities across America found themselves under siege. Riots were breaking out, law enforcement was overwhelmed, and America saw footage of events we could not have imagined. More importantly, we heard the news media establish a dominant media narrative: these are peaceful protestors, not rioters, and they are fighting against systemic racism. The National Guard was called into many situations to stop the rioting.
But if you watched videos of the protest on social media, you got a very different story than you would have seen on the evening news.
Especially on the Front Lawn of the White House, protestors were militaristic and seeking to provoke violent confrontation. This video, in particular, stood out to people who speak Mandarin. They identified orders being given that sounded like those of Chinese troops.
If media members of the Center for Foreign Relations saw this and are controlling the dominant media narrative, it would be a strong signal they are not on the side of Americans and the West. Perhaps members have been bribed, perhaps they truly and honestly believe in the dominant media narrative. One thing is for sure: this was not a peaceful protest and there was a genuine threat on the lives of law enforcement. A use of force would have been justified, but the story you would hear afterwards would be very different from the truth.
What We Can Do?
This article is a hypothesis about the current state of affairs. It seeks explanations for why the dominant media narrative has changed since May 29, 2020.
Instead of talking about China, Spygate, Covid-19, nursing home deaths, unemployment, the stock market, and other matters of national concern, we’re talking about abolishing the police, racist white people, and how to purge our institutions of wrongthink.
An even better question: Has waning Western influence caused the CFR to lose its allegiance to the Western World? Let’s come back to that one.
As far as the allegiance of the CFR is concerned, consider this video featuring Richard Stengel, former Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs in the Obama State Department.
Listen to how he talks about his role as chief propagandist and the question he receives afterwards.
The whole video is worth a listen, but this part is supremely important for understanding the question:
When asked by an audience member whether the grand narrative includes Africa and the third world, Mr. Stengel changes the subject without a word in reply. Of course he did, the Council on Foreign Relations never considered whether the rest of the world really matters.
It sounds like now they are, and maybe they are overcompensating for past failures. One could imagine Mr. Stengel going up to the man at the end of the session to discuss how to get into the story.
It’s also possible its members have been offered incentives. They can retain their power and influence in exchange for transforming the US into a vassal state for China, complete with central authority, abolition of property rights, severe restrictions on speech, and no guns. The strange narrative we hear is simply the sound of money changing hands.
If the mainstream media orgs listed on the chart above are any indicator, this is the simplest explanation about where their loyalties lie.
They are businesspeople. Disney, Time Warner, ABC, Bloomberg and most of the rest make more money overseas then they do in the US.
Market economics would dictate that action for rational actors. Think about that picture of Jamie Diamond from JP Morgan kneeling in front of an open vault during the riots, you get the idea what that symbolizes.
Instead of sound leadership and direction, we get Antifa. The new media darling that is a Communist organization.
When they say they are anti-fascist, that means they are directly opposed to liberal Democracy. When the organization started in the 1930s, is was not opposed to the Nazis, it was opposed to the Weimar Republic.
Their leaders were appointed by Soviets and they hated the idea that majorities could use the vote to oppress minority groups within a state. They held that the only means of stopping this problem was the establishment of an authoritarian regime. Most Antifa members left the organization by 1937, having gone underground or joined the Nazi party. After all, they were looking for authoritarianism and an end to liberal Democracy.
So this is what’s at stake.
In that video, Stengel appears with Kelly M. Greenhill and Joan Donovan, who speak about the difficulties of removing content they don’t like from the Internet and censoring people on platforms by creating mobs.
Both of them, very benignly, express a desire to use force to achieve their ends. They describe opponents on the Internet in the least favorable terms possible, and one gets the sense both of them have a with-me-or-against-me mentality when it comes to online affairs.
On the stage, one hears echoes of the past. They are professors and thought leaders, people charged with helping others reach their potential. It’s clear this is what they want and they’re not interested in anyone else’s point of view.
For right now, the most important thing you can do is build awareness. There is no kinetic battle to be won, this is about perception and sympathies.
Share this article, email it to your friends, discuss on social media (especially in groups), post it to every subreddit. Download Signal and tell your loved ones to use it, just in case this is heading somewhere. Watch for other indicators and share them on social media. Come up with hashtags to describe what you see and what you are fighting against.
I’ll be back to talk about what we do to mount an effective resistance. The good news is there will be cake.