From Journalist Robert Parry: The year 2013 could be a turning point in American history. And – with your help – Consortiumnews.com can continue its work toward getting the nation on the right path. We can keep on challenging the false narratives that the Right has deployed in its long assault on the U.S. democratic process.
Obviously there remain many difficulties ahead, but for one of the few times in my 35 years in Washington journalism – including at the Associated Press, Newsweek and PBS Frontline – I am optimistic that honesty is finally beginning to win out. [To help us meet our financial needs, click here.]
I know many progressives were disappointed in Barack Obama’s first term, but his reelection represented a stunning failure of the Right’s usual tactic of amplifying endless lies through its gigantic media megaphone and manipulating American voters. Obama’s clear-cut victory shows that the Right’s old methods may finally be losing their clout.
We have seen something similar in the failure of Washington’s neocons to intimidate Obama into backing off his nomination of former Nebraska Sen. Chuck Hagel to be Defense Secretary. We have seen it, too, in the determination of many Americans to demand commonsense gun laws and not be scared off by the powerful gun lobby.
As I have believed since we launched Consortiumnews.com more than 17 years ago, careful presentation of fact can eventually overcome lies and propaganda. Indeed, many of the storylines that we have worked so hard to correct are finally breaking down the barriers of misinformation that the Right has devoted so much money to erecting.
For instance, it is now much more accepted that the Republican Party engaged in near treasonous acts to secure power – in 1968 with Richard Nixon’s sabotage of Lyndon Johnson’s Vietnam peace talks and in 1980 with Ronald Reagan’s secret dealing with Iranian radicals holding 52 Americans hostage and dooming Jimmy Carter’s presidency.
I compiled the now-overwhelming evidence of both cases in my new book, America’s Stolen Narrative. And serious people, including many historians, are paying attention.
At Consortiumnews.com, we also stood up against the mainstream media’s rejection of investigative reporting that revealed how the Reagan-Bush administrations tolerated and protected cocaine trafficking by the Nicaraguan Contras.
For a while, I was one of the few Washington journalists defending reporter Gary Webb who revived that important story in 1996, but persistence – and the clear evidence of this serious crime of state – eventually turned the tide. Now, eight years after Webb’s tragic death, the Contra-Cocaine story is widely recognized as true.
We also have made great headway in alerting the public to the right-wing propaganda machine that has promoted many of America’s most misguided policies. From Consortiumnews.com’s earliest days as the Internet’s first investigative magazine, we showed how wealthy right-wingers invested billions of dollars in constructing a media apparatus to confuse and mislead the American people.
Over the past year, I’ve focused, too, on how the Right has distorted the actual intent of the Framers of the U.S. Constitution, making them out to be free-market ideologues who loved states’ rights and despised the idea of a strong central government – when the reality was almost the opposite.
In particular, George Washington and James Madison hated the Articles of Confederation, which made the individual states “sovereign” and kept the central government weak. That’s why they threw out the Articles and replaced them with the Constitution. But the Right has deployed its false history to recruit many gullible Tea Party types who think they’re channeling the Framers’ “original intent.”
Some of our reporting on the Reagan-Bush era is reflected in the new “Showtime” series produced by Oliver Stone, entitled “The Untold History of the United States.” The multi-part series is itself a remarkable commitment by a mainstream U.S. media outlet like “Showtime,” one that reflects how the steady accumulation of honest reporting has opened the way for more truth-telling to a wider audience.
Another positive trend is that we have become the home for insightful writing by a number of ex-CIA analysts, the likes of Ray McGovern, Melvin A. Goodman, Elizabeth Murray and Paul R. Pillar, some of whom suffered under the politicization of the CIA’s intelligence product over the past few decades.
So, I think we are making real progress as we enter our 18th year at Consortiumnews.com. But none of it would have been possible without the support of our readers.
Though our budget is still very modest, barely $10,000 a month, it has enabled us to undertake a variety of investigative projects and to pay our writers for their original journalism. My hope is that we can take on many more vital investigative projects in this crucial year ahead.
I’m asking for your support in that effort. We are a tax-exempt 501-c-3 organization, so your donation can be tax-deductible. Also, if you would like a signed gift copy of my new book, America’s Stolen Narrative, as a token of our appreciation, just ask.
Donations can be made by credit card at the Consortiumnews.com Web site or by check to: Consortium for Independent Journalism (CIJ); 2200 Wilson Blvd., Suite 102-231; Arlington VA 22201. To use PayPal, our account is named after our e-mail address: “consortnew @ aol.com”
Thank you for your support.
Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories in the 1980s for the Associated Press and Newsweek. He founded Consortiumnews.com in 1995 as the Internet’s first investigative magazine. He saw it as a way to combine modern technology and old-fashioned journalism to counter the increasing triviality of the mainstream U.S. news media.