In the mafia, you ‘make your bones’ by killing someone. It’s generally essential to getting ‘made’. In the oligarch media, it’s the same thing. Ted Turner’s CNN ‘made its bones’ on the first Iraq War. Embedded with the US troops, gleefully watching cities get bombed. Imperial media today is embedded with US spy planes near China, gleefully hoping for WWIII. War is a farce that gives them meaning. It gives them ratings. The media loves war. It’s great programming.
It’s important to understand the news as 100% advertising. During the breaks you get declared advertising for the suckers that have to pay, and the news itself is advertising from the oligarchs that run the place. Western media has perfected the art of selective attention and distraction. The press is called free, but is literally owned by a small class of people. Reporters are ostensibly free to report, but end up parroting the same line on any number of subjects. The media itself is literally embedded with the military and cannot cover it with any real objectivity. And yet the media poses as objective and above the fray. They are the fray. The breaks are brought to you by car insurance and dick pills, and the programming is brought to you straight from the Pentagon and the arms dealers that literally run the place.
I say literally because the current Secretary of Defence is a former (and probably to-be) Director of Raytheon, an arms dealer. People like White House spokesperson (ie, propagandist) Jen Psaki move straight into their own shoes on MSNBC. Like everything else, the White Empire has privatized propaganda but their press is in no sense free. It’s literally run for profit, trillions for the arms dealers, billions for the media barons, and millions for the grinning faces that present it to you on screen.
This media loves war for the same reason blockbusters are all just fist-fights in different contexts (in space, while time traveling, with cars). They love the action. America has always had the luxury of far away wars fought by debt peons, mercenaries, and proxy arms. They actually make more money from losing these wars. The people watching the cable colosseum are entertained, and the arms dealers can sell more arms in a losing battle that drags on forever. The millions killed and tens of displaced? Well, they don’t matter anyways. They’re not a consumer market and they have no voice in this vaunted democracy that the new empire claims to spread. They can just fuck off and die. The arms dealers get the money, the media gets the advertising rights, and everything is in its place. The poor buried underground, the rich adding extensions to their homes in Bethesda, and the drones flying overhead.
Today, despite most of the world not supporting US ‘intervention’ in Ukraine (up to the point of scuttling peace talks even Ukraine wants), despite protests against NATO in Europe and the US, and despite people having their own fucking problems that could use a billion dollars here and there, the media beats the war gongs as relentlessly as ever. No one was ever held accountable for the ‘interventions’ in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, or Libya so they’re still out there calling for more war and getting more paid. No one ever entertains the idea that maybe the US military should do nothing rather than making everything worse wherever they ‘intervene’. No, the US has a big military and they must use it for something, as the war criminal Madeline Albright said before she recently went to hell. And they have a big media and it needs programming. So it all fits together like a hook and eye. A fish hook, an open eye.
That Margaret Atwood poem is an apt description of the modern mass media and its relationship to its viewers. It keeps you hooked with constant war propaganda, like Saturday morning cartoons, except instead of Transformers toys they sell you on HIMARs and expensive military systems that are actually useless because the deindustrialized, incredibly corrupt West cannot actually produce enough bullets to sustain a land war in Asia, let alone on two fronts. Yet the media is flying around, gleefully trying to open up fronts with old reruns of Red Peril and Yellow Peril, with the latent free of colored people and Muslims throughout. War is a force that gives them meaning. But war is also the worst thing in the world, as anyone who’s actually lived through war knows. That’s why this warmongering media must be discredited and turned off. As far as I can tell these fuckers have already started World War III, a conflict that could easily make bones of us all.