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Rigged Debates And
Jailed Reporters

By Joel Skousen
World Affairs Brief

America's political king-makers may not have absolute control, but they do have effective control. Much of the manipulation of public perception comes through the establishment media, who serve as the self-appointed sponsors of presidential debates. When a candidate like Rep. Ron Paul, with millions of grass-root supporters, threatens to break through they sideline him as "second tier," limit his camera time, and suppress the overwhelming public support on post-debate web polls. When even that fails to work, we see them arrest reporters outside the debate arena who dare ask 9/11 conspiracy questions of the mainstream candidates.
The media used to be able to get away with reliance only upon the two party system (where the winner takes all votes) to exclude the rise of third parties. All they had to do to precondition the public to the preferred candidates was to announce on the evening news that such and such a list of candidates were the "front runners, according to experts." Media moguls and other king-makers in America have always excluded less known candidates from debates by setting an artificially high percentage of popularity as a barrier to entry. Establishment pollsters also manipulate polling results by framing the questions to ignore minor candidates or using sophisticated computerized lists to poll a higher percentage of predictable voters in areas with known demographic values.
While these tactics are still very much in use, the Powers That Be (PTB) are having to scramble for new ways to counter the growing influence of the internet, which has created an independent venue for non-mainstream candidates to bypass the media blackout.
FreeMarketNews.com has taken the lead in crucial reporting on this heighten form of political manipulation: "During the recent presidential debates--certainly the Republican one--CNN executives gave 'second tier' candidates less time and exposure than 'first tier' candidates [Giuliani, McCain, and Romney]. They did so without informing the public and in fact seemingly misled the public during the debates and afterward about their actions and intentions. After the recent Republican presidential debate, CNN executives evidently manipulated internal political polls, made it difficult for the public to find information on the real 'winner'--small-government conservative Congressman Ron Paul (R-Tex), according to widespread Internet results." Here's the evidence:
"- GOP candidates were seated so that the 'first tier' candidates had center stage.
"- Second tier candidates received, in some cases, only half as much time as first tier candidates.
"- CNN moderators stated continuously that 'all' would have a chance to answer every question, but then ran out of time before these promises could be kept.
"- After the debate, behavior that seemed to marginalize certain candidates--especially Ron Paul--was just as obvious.
"- CNN anchors spent a good deal of time interviewing 'major' candidates, but far less time with increasingly popular 'second tier' candidates. The fervent support of some second-tier candidates on the 'Net--especially free-market proponent Ron Paul--is a major news story, but one that CNN virtually ignored.
"-CNN put up a 'visual' after the debate but then promptly pulled it. At the time it was pulled, it apparently showed candidate Ron Paul (R-Tex) winning the debate by a significant majority.
"-Later, CNN put up a web-based comments page about the debate but took that down, as well. The 'vanished' comment page has been posted at several alternative news websites. It features numerous positive comments about Ron Paul's performance.
"-CNN has also seemingly made it fairly difficult to find its web-based GOP Poll on the debate's winner. Once again, Ron Paul is firmly entrenched as the leader, and in several other Internet polls as well."
I would add to that, that questions are sometimes tailored to make major candidates look good, and marginalize lesser candidates by trying to trip them up or make them look extreme. In all debates so far, no embarrassing questions have been asked of the majors which would highlight their conflict of interest, establishment links and/or corruption: i.e., Giuliani's financial relationship with CINTRA, (the foreign corporation that is building one leg of the Trans-Texas Corridor (TTC) highway system. The TTC is part of the "NAFTA Superhighway"); or Hillary Clinton's financial relationship with InfoUSA, (an outsourcing company run by Vin Gupta of India that has channeled millions into the coffers of Bill and Hillary Clinton).
On the substance of the debate, one set of responses by the mainstream candidates was particularly galling. Commentator Paul Craig Roberts describes it best: "All of the leading Republican presidential candidates openly and nonchalantly endorsed using nuclear weapons against Iran unless Iran abandons its right to enrich uranium under the non-proliferation treaty, to which Iran is a signatory (unlike nuclear-armed Israel, India, and US puppet Pakistan).
"What is moral degeneracy if it is not using nuclear weapons to murder masses of innocent civilians and spread deadly radioactivity over vast areas merely in order to force a country to do as we order? If this isn't barbarism, what is barbarism?" Roberts also said, correctly, that "War without a just cause is murder, not war."
We've observed for years how anyone holding conspiratorial views is denigrated mercilessly on mainstream talk shows--especially those pretending to be conservative (Limbaugh, Hannity, and Beck et al.). After this week's GOP debate, it is clear the intolerance for journalists who ask the wrong questions has gone to another level entirely.
Matt Lepacek, a freelance reporter working for Infowars.com who claimed to have proper press credentials at CNN's Republican debate, was arrested by NH State Police at the command of Giuliani's press secretary after asking a question about Giuliani's foreknowledge of the collapse of the World Trade Center twin towers. Giuliani is denying he ever indicated he was forewarned even though there are dozens of internet copies of his TV audio interview with Peter Jennings in which he said, "I was told that the World Trade Center was gonna' collapse."
Another cameraman stringing for Infowars got the confrontation on tape:
The most burning question is why were New Hampshire State Police arresting a reporter merely on the non-verbal signal from Rudy Giuliani's press secretary? The police are scrambling to determine whose name they are going to put on the paperwork justifying the arrest, and are refusing to release that name until the hearing on July 1. This could result in a major lawsuit for illegal arrest and violation of 4th Amendment rights.
Lepacek also had a web cam hidden on his person which continued to record the sounds of his interaction with police in the patrol car after the arrest. The police threatened him with secret detention for espionage just because of the presence of a hidden camera. While this is ludicrous on its face, legally, it does indicate that the influence of the federal secret prison system has filtered down to state levels. Apparently, State Police are willing to funnel people into this new American Gulag as "anti-government traitors."
I predict that one of two possible scenarios will play out here. Either State prosecutors will try to plea bargain this out of existence (with a monetary payoff to Lepacek in exchange for immunity against lawsuits) or they will shop for a judge who will slap a gag order on all proceedings and deny that any of Lepacek's rights were violated. Lepacek was arrested for criminal trespass, which will be based on the presumption that he did not have a press pass. Note in the video that the Police took him away without making a determination about a pass. They were acting on orders of Giuliani's press agent.
World Affairs Brief, June 8, 2007. Commentary and Insights on a Troubled World.
Copyright Joel Skousen. Partial quotations with attribution permitted.
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