The Pulitzer prize-winning journalist discusses our loss of civil liberties, the importance of the alternative media, and why he thinks the USA is ripe for a revolution.
“If you’re a journalist, you manipulate facts,” says renegade reporter Chris Hedges at the start of this illuminating Vice interview. “I did it for a living.“
Hedges is an award-winning reporter who spent years in war zones as a foreign correspondent for the New York Times. He now writes political books in addition to a weekly column for Truthdig, and he continues to support the work of many activist groups (“I’m surrounded by all these people with piercings and tattoos,” Hedges grins. “That’s where I get my energy from. I think they’re great”).
Chris Hedges is known for his refreshingly honest and intelligent analysis of the world. He’s a self-proclaimed anti-Capitalist who was heavily involved in the 2011 Occupy movement. In this interview with Vice Canada, Hedges claims the movement was “heavily infiltrated by the authorities,” as many activists suspected at the time. “That’s not even a question,” Hedges replies with a wave of the hand.
He then discusses the corporate press and laments the death of mainstream investigative journalism of the kind that brought Watergate to the public’s knowledge. Those days are gone, Hedges says, pointing out that corporate shareholders and advertisers dictate news content and angles to such an extent that they have killed real news-gathering.
“The mainstream media doesn’t do journalism. The alternative media does far more real journalism than commercial media. News and the truth are not the same thing. If everybody in power doesn’t dislike you, you’re probably not doing your job properly.”
Hedges also talks about North America’s worrying slide into corporate oligarchy, saying:
“If we remain passive, we are accepting the death sentence being handed to us by these corporate forces. We need mass civil disobedience.”
He is hopeful that people are starting to wake up to the reality of how the world really works. “The game is fixed, and once people know the game is fixed, it gets very dangerous”.
This thought led Hedges to write a new book suggesting the USA is on the edge of a mass revolt, and he cites rising gun crime as just one symptom of this growing unease and frustration. In the video above, Hedges outlines the ‘recipe’ for revolution, and suggests that if it ended with us overthrowing the banking elite, “It wouldn’t be such a bad thing.”
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