Trump gets flak for characterizing the mainstream press as purveyors of Fake News. But what about no news at all?
Isn’t lack of coverage even worse than biased coverage?
Well, how much news have you heard or read about the gilets jaunes – or “yellow vest” – protests in France? CNN hasn’t got anything on its main page today (Jan. 9). Neither did NBC or CBS. Lots of the usual – endless – carpet-chewing coverage of Trump, though. And also of such important stories as “Want to Pay off Your Mortgage? Try Frugal Minimalism.”
You might think France, a major western European country, coming unglued – and on the verge of its government outright banning “unauthorized” criticism of its actions – might at least be . . . well, news.
Which is very interesting, given what the yellow vests are protesting. This being chiefly the purposely punitive taxes on fuel – diesel especially – imposed by the French President, Emmanuel Macron. In the name of “climate change” – but really in the name of squeezing average Frenchmen (and women) out of their cars. These taxes – already extortionate and brutally regressive – were on track to increase the cost of a gallon of fuel to more than $7.
This brought the French not to their knees – but to the streets. The yellow vests – which are reflective jackets every French motorist is required by law to keep in their vehicle, to be worn in the event of an emergency – were donned for a different kind of emergency.
And Macron buckled. The tax hike has been rescinded. But did you read about it?
Probably not – unless you went out of your way to look for it. Mainstream press coverage of this effective protest has been as scanty as its coverage of the reason for the yellow vest protests – which by the way continue, notwithstanding Macron’s retreat.
The reason being that Macron has not retreated in principle from resurrecting the tax, once the protests are well in hand. He hasn’t abandoned the “climate change” excuse for the tax; indeed, he is as adamant as ever that energy austerity be imposed. Well, on the French people.
Not on him and those in his class.
The yellow vests know this, which is why they haven’t gone home yet.
Macron made the great tactical mistake of pushing the people of France too hard, too soon.
Nor – apparently – about the latest news out of France, which is that Macron’s government has floated the idea of a new law criminalizing “unauthorized” demonstrations of, well, anything the French government happens not to like its citizens protesting.
Macron’s Prime Minister, Eduouard Philippe, characterizes such citizens as “troublemakers” – a species of word very much of the same species as “climate change” in that both are conveniently vague as well as conveniently defined to be whatever the user wishes them to be.
Big snowstorm? Climate change!
Criticize the government? You are a troublemaker!
French citizens are already being arrested for less – merely for wearing a yellow vest. “Those who question our institutions will not have the last word,” Philippe declared. Mark that. It will be enough, in France, to question our institutions to be subject to arrest, prosecution and caging.
Which means, questioning the policies of the government – including those related to the “climate change” religion. Which brings us full circle to the absence of coverage of these events.
The government of this country is in the process of enacting similar laws, just not too soon and not as hard. We are on the slower-motion plan, and because of this far more strategic approach to gradually getting the American cattle to accept the transition from being free range cattle to feedlot cattle, the American cattle are – unlike the French – generally oblivious.
Most Americans haven’t noticed, as a for-instance, that while gas prices haven’t gone up, the cost of the cars they put gas into has – and not because of new features they want but because of impositions made by the government. Examples include the sudden appearance of ASS in most new cars. Automatic Stop/Start – a system which turns off the engine whenever the car isn’t moving, in order to fractionally increase individual car mileage for the sake of increasing so-called “corporate” (or fleet) averages, which is necessary because of government fuel efficiency fatwas – which end up being just the same as a tax except on the car, not the fuel.
Because either way, you still pay.
This is subtler, and so smarter – from the standpoint of the people holding the proverbial cattle prod.
The fuel economy fatwas are also forcing mass-production of electric cars, which cars cost tens of thousands of dollars more than otherwise comparable non-electric cars. This amounts to an even more extortionate and regressive tax on mobility – which is pure genius, relative to Macron’s hamfisted (because obvious) direct tax on motor fuels.
But you didn’t read about that here.
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