- Next Meeting: Thursday, October 27, 6:00 pm at Ohio County Public Library in Wheeling (in the “Boardroom”).
- 7:00 pm October 27 we will show the video The War you Don’t See by John Pilger. This will follow the meeting and also be in the Boardroom.
John Pilger has reported on six wars, beginning in Vietnam in 1967, and produced more than 55 documentaries. His new film, The War You Don’t See, examines the media’s role in war and asks whether it has become part of the propaganda machine of the state.
Pilger says in the film: “We journalists . . . have to be brave enough to defy those who seek our collusion in selling their latest bloody adventure in someone else’s country. . . . That means always challenging the official story, however patriotic that story may appear, however seductive and insidious it is. For propaganda relies on us in the media to aim its deceptions not at a far away country but at you at home. . . . In this age of endless imperial war, the lives of countless men, women and children depend on the truth or their blood is on us. . . . Those whose job it is to keep the record straight ought to be the voice of people, not power.”
The Pentagon spends $1 billion a year on the creation of illusions. A former CIA analyst implies it is the US that is the master of manipulation, saying that 80-90 percent of news is officially inspired and anyone who crosses the Pentagon is likely to have his or her access and sources removed.
Ohio Valley Peace “Bean Poll” at Barnesville Pumpkin Festival reveals area folks’ strong wish to change the way we vote
The results of an opinion poll, dubbed “Bean Poll” because opinions were expressed by placing dried beans in jars, seem to show a majority of Ohio Valley residents want changes in the date of elections and improvements in the way votes are counted. Another poll sampled attitudes toward immigration and diversity in our population. Beyond checking the pulse of area citizens, the purposes of these opinion polls are to stimulate thinking and discussion about government and elections, and to promote awareness that contributes to intelligent voting and good citizenship.
The two “Bean Polls” were conducted at the Barnesville Pumpkin Festival on September 23 – 25 by Ohio Valley PEACE. Similar “Bean Polls” were conducted at the Pumpkin Festival in the previous thirteen years. While Festival visitors were invited randomly to participate, those doing so volunteered. The results of these informal polls do give an indication of the sentiment of folks in this area, though a scientifically designed poll might produce more accurate numbers.
Both opinion polls consisted of six questions or statements, each attached to a pair of Mason jars. Participants chose a response by dropping a dried bean in one of the jars.
The poll titled “Elections” consisted of the following six questions with the response percentages:
- Should elections be on a weekend to encourage people to vote? (77% yes, 23% no)
- Do you believe voting machines can be hacked to alter the results? (86% yes, 14% no)
- Should super delegates have a role in selecting presidential candidates? (10% yes, 90% no)
- Should the presidential debates be open to third party candidates? (87% yes, 13% no)
- Does gerrymandering congressional districts skew the results? (85% yes, 15% no)
- Should we do away with the Electoral College? (69% yes, 31% no)
A second poll named “Diversity & Immigration” offered the following six statements, asking participants to agree or disagree:
- Our immigration policy should be stricter and more exclusionary. (46% agree, 54% disagree)
- U.S. support for corporate-dominated trade policy increases immigration. (49% agree, 51% disagree)
- Our society is strengthened by accepting and valuing diversity. (88% agree, 12% disagree)
- Government should build in advantages for certain groups because of past discrimination. (39% agree, 61% disagree)
- If we provided free education and jobs for all, preferential treatment would be unnecessary. (69% agree, 31% disagree)
- Police forces should reflect the diversity of the communities they serve. (83% agree, 17% disagree)