From Shawcross: "One Man Has Built an Information Empire That Stretches Around the Earth-from Adelaide [Australia] to Hollywood. Now he Stands at the Threshold of Unprecedented Global Power":
Admire or fear him, you can't ignore Rupert Murdoch. Chances are, no matter where you are, he influences your life through his newspapers, magazines or TV network. He is perhaps the world's most successful businessman, a baron of the global village—and his power is growing every day ... In a brief time, Murdoch has transformed himself from the owner of a single newspaper in an Australian backwater to the titan of News, one of the world's largest, most sophisticated communications empires. Of the six international media giants (Time Warner, Sony, Bertelsmann, Berlusconi, Disney and News), only News is owned and controlled by one man. Only News stretches completely around the earth. And only News has Murdoch, the tycoon whose life has been, in the words of Shawcross, "an unending assault upon the world ... a series of interlocking wars" ... always buying and trading for more power.Those words were written more than a decade ago and since then Murdoch's media kingdom has only gotten bigger and more powerful.
And before he decided to move into Canada to poison our political atmosphere, we already had Conrad Black and Izzy Asper.
Connie was behind much of the success of the neoconservative movement. After buying up most of the Canadian media, he used people like Mark Steyn and David Frum to shift it to the right. Stephen Harper was also an invited scribe, in an attempt to persuade Canadians that wealthy people only had our best interests at heart.
He also directly promoted Stockwell Day, even allowing Ezra Levant to hold fundraisers for Day at his house. Meanwhile, he himself, hosted $1000.00 a plate dinners, where Day was able to schmooze those who could afford to pay $1000.00 for a meal.
In Trevor Harrison's book; Requiem for a Lightweight: Stockwell Day and Image Politics, he discusses how the media created Day, and "explores the growing problem of rational democractic politics in an age of celebrity, image, and instant culture".
Izzy Asper was very much behind Stephen Harper and the Reform party, even writing some of the party's policy, in exchange for throwing the massive weight of Canwest Global behind the man.
Which brings us to Julian Assange.
He has captured the public's imagination in a way that few have been able to. It's a David and Goliath story, as he is standing against the media moguls, whose primary goal is to spin, contrive and poison.
And he is amassing an army of the willing, who with simple slingshots have taken down Visa and MasterCard, and are ready to topple more, even if only for a few hours.
The India Economic Times describes this army, who call themselves Anonymous.
While most countries have ploughed much more attention and resources into cyber security in recent years, most of the debate has focused on the threat from militant groups such as al Qaeda or mainstream state on state conflict. But attempts to silence WikiLeaks after the leaking of some 250,000 classified State Department cables seem to have produced something rather different -- something of a popular rebellion amongst hundreds or thousands of tech-savvy activists. "The first serious infowar is now engaged," former Grateful Dead lyricist, founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation John Perry Barlow told his followers on Twitter last week.And in Australia, the native son [Rupert coincidentally is also from Australia], has tongues wagging and pride showing:
"The field of battle is WikiLeaks. You are the troops." Some of the more militant elements on the Internet clearly took him at his word. A group calling itself Anonymous put the quote at the top of a webpage entitled "Operation Avenge Assange", referring to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange .
At a start of the year, I dare say relatively few of Julian Assange's compatriots would even have heard of the Queenslander who founded Wikileaks. Twelve months on, however, he is rivalling Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman for the unofficial title of the world's most famous Australian. Clearly, he is the most talked about and consequential. This week his face peers out from the cover of Time magazine, always a useful measure of global significance.Is this really the start of a rebellion against corporate media and American Imperialism, now that it has been exposed in all of it's ugliness?
A source of comfort for those of us suffering from a news deficiency? Who are tired of spin and media created politicians?
If it is, it's been a long time coming.