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July 19, 2011

Is Shutdown of Investigative Journalism Department of Beijing Paper Harbinger of USA Things to Come

By Rob Kall

A communist party decision has terminated an investigative journalism unit at a major Chinese Newspaper. This raises questions about what will and what has already transpired in the USA along similar lines.


A well respected investigative journalism unit at a prominent Beijing newspaper has been shut down. The China Media project reports 
At 10:49am yesterday, [CMP Director] Qian Gang  wrote on his Sina Microblog account: "I'm shocked to learn that the investigative team at China Economic Times led by Wang Keqin has been "dismantled' this morning.

Apparently, this was a decision by upper level management at the newspaper-- it's Communist party committe-- according to the Wall Street Journal. 

The author of the China Media Project article suggests that this was a bad call by an internet ignorant manager, that it might even end up doing some good and that the investigative team, headed by Wang Keqin " enjoys tolerance from high-level [government leaders]"

But this gives us pause to wonder. 

As newspapers consolidate and the pool investigative journalists shrinks smaller and smaller, will the right wingers who control most of the biggest media, which they've built through mergers and acquisitions, either shut down investigative journalism units altogether or shift th eir focus to targets that are irritants to the banksters, big Pharma, multinational corporations and the too big to fail companies that bankroll the media?

Perhaps that question is too modest. Perhaps we should ask how much of that has already happened? How much phone hacking and tapping has been done by operations run by News Corp, or by other ideologically similar groups?  

How many investigative projects targeting big corporations have been shut down or would down, or subjected to no-new-hire or no pay raise policies?

Let's face it. China is a copycat country. They copy from the USA. It is not unreasonable to speculate that what was publicly done to the China Economic Times could very well have been done secretly by privately operated or even publicly held media operations. 

The more I think about it, the less what's happened in China is a harbinger and the more it is a parrot, mimicking what's just about certainly happened here in the USA.

This is one more reason that the US, which depends on an aggressive free press, more specifically investigative journalism, must, MUST develop alternative funding for investigative journalism. 

Submitters Bio:

Rob Kall has spent his adult life as an awakener and empowerer-- first in the field of biofeedback, inventing products, developing software and a music recording label, MuPsych, within the company he founded in 1978-- Futurehealth, and founding, organizing and running 3 conferences: Winter Brain, on Neurofeedback and consciousness, Optimal Functioning and Positive Psychology (a pioneer in the field of Positive Psychology, first presenting workshops on it in 1985) and Storycon Summit Meeting on the Art Science and Application of Story-- each the first of their kind.  Then, when he found the process of raising people's consciousness and empowering them to take more control of their lives  one person at a time was too slow, he founded Opednews.com-- which has been the top search result on Google for the terms liberal news and progressive opinion for several years. Rob began his Bottom-up Radio show, broadcast on WNJC 1360 AM to Metro Philly, also available on iTunes, covering the transition of our culture, business and world from predominantly Top-down (hierarchical, centralized, authoritarian, patriarchal, big)  to bottom-up (egalitarian, local, interdependent, grassroots, archetypal feminine and small.) Recent long-term projects include a book, Bottom-up-- The Connection Revolution, debillionairizing the planet and the Psychopathy Defense and Optimization Project. 

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