Once, a very long time ago, I lived in a small cabin 12 kms up the very rural Granby River Valley. One day I heard a frantic racket in the chicken house, so I went out to see what was causing such a disturbance—an owl flying low over head. I scared the owl off and returned to the cabin. BUT I didn’t go in the cabin because there was a large rattlesnake leaning up against the door hissing at me!
Yikes, if you can imagine how I felt about finding a rattlesnake on my doorstep, then you can begin to understand how I felt when I recently returned to my Courtenay home from a 2 ½ hr. bike ride to find a copy of the Epoch Times, on my doorstep—seething with venom toward China, especially the Communist government of China. I am not enamoured of hate mail and after a cursory perusal of the headlines promoting hatred toward the Communist Government of China, the paper went straight to the recycling bin.
I didn’t know where the paper came from. I even thought maybe it was targeted to my house. However, I soon learned that it was distributed over much of the Comox Valley –well one person told me it was being distributed to homes all over Canada and—likely—all over North America. I decided to do a little internet sleuthing.
Turns out the publication is, at least ostensibly, produced and promoted by the quasi –religious organization of Falun Gong which seeks the overthrow of the Chinese government and was persecuted in Turkey for its perceived role in trying to over throw the Recep Tayyip Erdoğan government in Turkey.
Recently the Epoch Times has turned its sights on the American elections promoting the QAnon far-right conspiracy theory alleging that a cabal of Satan-worshiping pedophiles is running a child sex-trafficking ring from which only Donald Trump can save the world through a “Storm” of mass incarcerations! Yikes! According to Wikipedia “No part of the conspiracy claim is based in fact.” Surprise!
Reading further the Wikipedia page, I found that the Epoch Times supports far right parties all over the world but especially supporting Trump and the German and French far-right. The money they control is utterly astounding– Falun Gong being the second-largest funder of Trump electioneering on Facebook-right after the Trump campaign itself! According to Wikipedia the Epoch Times has been lock step with the Trump campaign alluding to imaginary conspiracy theories, making fabricated claims about voter fraud and the efforts of the Black Lives Matter movement.
The thing about Epoch Times that amazes me is how utterly they can turn the truth upside down, magnify the distortions and have it come out in a way that fools the gullible.
Well there I go again, who says it “fools the gullible?” They aren’t gullible. Trump is certainly not gullible. There is nothing gullible about this. This is a (or very nearly a) very conscious decision to believe all this anti China/anti left/anti common good just because it is a useful construct for trying to knock the legs out from under our dreams of creating social good while reinforcing the constructs that support a racist, me only vision of our relationship to others and our much endangered Earth.
How can these right-wing ideologues talk about the horrible Chinese government that wants to take over the world AND, yet, they ignore the fact that the US government spends more on its military than the next 10 largest military budgets from around the world. Who is it that invades other countries killing 10s of thousands, destroying economic and health infrastructure claiming to have evidence of Weapons of Mass Destruction what turns out to be utterly without the slightest merit/evidence. Who militarily invades countries around the world killing leaders who speak for more than just the interest of its investor class? Who murdered 3 million Indochinese people just because they didn’t like who the Vietnamese people elected as their leader?
While the Epoch Times would like you to believe that the US economy is threatened by the Chinese, the obvious truth is that the American economy has become moribund by the ever tightening grip of the wealthy few. American once prided itself on innovation that would keep the economy growing, but it now falls ever deeper into the quagmire of an economy moribund by its descent into an economy of, by and for a wealthy few.
China wants to use its new technologies to “spy” on domestic and international people and institutions. Yikes, how can these people accuse China of using its businesses to spy on people and organizations but ignore things like the Snowden Papers and Wikileaks that so clearly demonstrate the American government’s hand in spying on every person, institution, business, country on Earth?
Yikes! The following is likely more applicable to me than anyone else I know. I need to start sending dollars to news sites that produce credible information about power relations and public intentions and provide credible information about how we can build a democratic society sustainable, equitable, fair, open all.
If I don’t, who will? Will you? Could we even come together to talk about the world that desperately needs effective, honest information that would empower all of us, together, to enjoy a healthy world?
I think I will start with PressProgress.ca. I’d like to see a copy of Press Progress on every doorstep countering the bile that is the Epoch Times.