For more than 30 years, Project Censored has searched out the most important undercovered stories of the year. Those stories tend to follow the standard wisdom: “real news” is about what’s going wrong in the world. But the new edition of Project Censored's annual compilation of stories that have been ignored by the mainstream media includes a different feature.
Drawing on the work of YES! and other sources, Kate Sims has contributed a chapter to ‘Censored 2009’ that tells 10 stories of hope and change—a sample of a new form of journalism that looks for the places where real change for the better is already underway.
We're honored to present an excerpt of that chapter. For the rest of the story, watch for the newly released Censored 2009.
|Go to your local book store or buy Censored 2009 here.|
“This may be the year the world hits a tipping point. You wouldn’t know it from reading the corporate media, but around the world, people have quit waiting for political and finance elites to solve problems. Instead, they are developing renewable energy alternatives, promoting real health care solutions, pressing for the abolition of nuclear weapons, and bringing the struggle for equity together with the work of saving the environment.”
Perhaps the world owes a debt of gratitude to the Bush administration and their neoconservative associates. They have made the folly of the “pro-empire” agenda so painfully clear that they may have forced the global population into a different, post-empire mode of thinking; one that could give birth to a whole new way of life for humankind. And while change of this magnitude may be difficult, there is nothing more rewarding—and more necessary.
While pro-empire foreign policy means perpetual wars of aggression for resources and global power, the new agenda is calling for the U.S. to rejoin the community of nations. While pro-empire proponents press for trade agreements that favor large corporations, the new agenda favors strong local economies that put families and the environment first. While the pro-empire agenda has no solution to runaway climate change, the new agenda is pointing a way to solutions that sustain our ecological life support systems while bringing a new generation out of poverty.
The mainstream media, as usual, avert their eyes from anything painful, complex, or “controversial,” and this growing movement is no exception. But in the end, it may not matter. Change is happening on a global scale despite attempts to contain it. And it is in the independent media—especially in sources like YES! magazine—that you can see the new stories unfolding.
The other good news is that people are beginning to come out of the fear-induced trance they have been in since 2001, and they are ready for real change. Poll after poll reveals that people want to change directions. YES! reported on a study that shows that, on a series of key domestic issues, Americans are far more progressive than one would think given the range of political debate in mainstream media. The polling results compiled by the Campaign for America's Future and Media Matters show Americans hold deeply progressive values on issues including national defense, energy, the environment, health care, and criminal justice. As author and progressive theorist David Korten often mentions to his audiences, “We are not the representatives of an alternative ‘fringe’ minority. We are the cutting edge of a national super-majority—and it is appropriate for us to begin acting accordingly.”
Kate Sims is a staff researcher with Project Censored: The News that Didn't Make the News.