Turnbull announces plans to shut down independent media: Cui bono?
Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has recently announced his decision to shut down Australian Community Television (ACT) by forcing it off free-to-air television by the end of 2015. This will shut down independent ideas and local Australian content in the only accessible video medium for the majority of Australians, and which is watched by 3.8 million viewers weekly. Under conditions of current technology, the “internet only” video option Turnbull claims will fully replace ACT is just not practical for the majority of Australians, nor will it be for several years. ACT Alliance secretary Richard McLelland has warned that forcing Community Television to an “internet only” option will be the “death knell of Community Television in Australia”.
Each week Australian Community Television screens over 120 first run locally made programs. Unlike the ABC and the SBS, Community Television is not government funded, and thus has a wide degree of independence. One of the main voices which former Goldman Sachs banker Turnbull intends to silence is that of the Citizens Electoral Council, against whom he has long waged a bitter vendetta, among other things because of the CEC’s decisive role in exposing the hoax of “man-made climate change”. Turnbull lost his Opposition leadership to Tony Abbott on 1 December 2009 over that issue, and therefore his coveted chance to be prime minister.
The CEC runs a weekly television program, The CEC Report for C31 in Melbourne and Geelong, C44 in Adelaide and 31 Digital in Brisbane. “The CEC Report” said CEC National Secretary Craig Isherwood today, “is watched by thousands of Australian households per week, and is a unique pole of opposition to the British Crown/City of London present policies of bail-out and bail-in for the Too Big To Fail Banks including Australia’s Big Four, and to this Anglo-American oligarchy’s plans for confrontation with Russia and China, to force them to capitulate before the next GFC wipes out the power of London and Wall Street for good. With very rare, occasional exceptions, the ‘major news media’ just serves as a whore for these financial interests, and their agenda of free trade, privatisation, deregulation and other forms of looting.”
A spectacular example of how the “mainstream media” simply serves as stooges for this financial oligarchy and its intelligence services has just surfaced in the revelations of German journalist Udo Ulfkotte. Formerly an editor at Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, one of Germany’s biggest newspapers, Udo Ulfkotte told Russia Insider on 17 October, “I ended up publishing articles under my own name written by agents of the CIA and other intelligence services, especially the German secret service.” Ulfkotte is now speaking out because he fears we are on the brink of nuclear war with Russia, can’t stomach the lies any longer, and is ashamed of taking bribes from billionaires to lie.
Ulfkotte told RT, “I’ve been a journalist for about 25 years, and I’ve been educated to lie, to betray, and not to tell the truth to the public”, and emphasised that intelligence agencies in general have such extensive reach into the media worldwide that it’s commonplace for journalists to serve as their “non-official” assets. “Is this only the case with German journalists?” he asked. “No, I think it is especially the case with British journalists, because they have a much closer relationship. It is especially the case with Israelis. Of course, with French journalists.… It is the case for Australian journalists, for journalists from New Zealand, from Taiwan, from … many countries … like Jordan for example.”
And for the rare case of honest journalists either not working for intelligence agencies or cowed by Murdoch or other media bosses from speaking out for fear of losing their jobs, Ulfkotte’s admission must be seen in the light of the National Security Legislation Amendment Act (No. 1) 2014 which received its Royal Assent on 2 October and is now the law of the land. It grants ASIO power to jail journalists for 10 years if they disclose information that would “prejudice the effective conduct of a special intelligence operation [SIO].” As documented in a 25 September 2014 CEC media release, that same Act grants any ASIO operatives or private contractors—or even foreign intelligence agencies working with ASIO—virtual immunity for prosecution for engaging the kinds of agent provocateur operations which are launched precisely to justify police states, for which ASIO and ASIS’s masters in the British intelligence services are so infamous, and of which 9/11 is the most notorious example.
Turnbull’s stated reason for shutting down Community Television is to use the “scarce public resource” of the wireless spectrum most efficiently given that there is “more competition” than ever before. That’s a transparent fraud. There is no shortage of VHF/UHF bandwidth for free-to-air television with Channels 6-69 being suitable for digital transmissions. And Australians don’t need dozens more infomercial stations.
“How much is Rupert paying you, Malcolm?” asked Mr. Isherwood. “And what about the Packer family, have they chipped in? After all the Kerry Packer who used to frequent the Queen’s box at the Ascot races launched your career in the first place. And then of course you defended him before the Costigan Commission in the early 1980s when it was investigating him for involvement in pornography, tax evasion, corporate fraud, money laundering and murder. That commission was abruptly wound up by the incoming Labor government of another Packer admirer, Bob Hawke.”