Thursday, September 4, 2014

"The official Press of Capitalism"

"WHEREVER I go, my first object, if I wish to find out the truth, is to get hold of the Free Press in France as in England, and even in America. But I know that wherever I get hold of such an organ it will be very strongly coloured with the opinion, or even fanaticism, of some minority. The Free Press, as a whole, if you add it all up and cancel out one exaggerated statement against another, does give you a true view of the state of society in which you live. The Official Press to-day gives you an absurdly false one everywhere. What a caricature—and what a base, empty caricature—of England or France or Italy you get in the Times, or the Manchester Guardian, the Matin, or the Tribune! No one of them is in any sense general—or really national.

"The Free Press gives you the truth; but only in disjointed sections, for it is disparate and it is particularist: it is marked with isolation—and it is so marked because its origin lay in various and most diverse propaganda: because it came later than the official Press of Capitalism, and was, in its origins, but a reaction against it."

~Hilaire Belloc: The Free Press: An essay on the manipulation of news and opinion, and how to counter it, Chap. XI.

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