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Big fish in Asean waters

Presidents Trump, Putin and Duterte

It’s that time of the week again – ‘Your Forum’ time – so we have another question for you to mull over. First though let’s set the scene.

From 10 to 14 November, United States President Donald Trump will be in Manila. He’ll be in the Philippine capital attending the 31st Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Summit – a gathering of the world’s leaders that will crown a year of meetings, forums, gatherings and events for which the Philippines has been the Asean host. Also there, will be the president of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin.

Both men will spend time with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte. They’ll talk about trade, defence, the North Korea problem, Islamic State – particularly in the context of the terrorist-besieged city of Marawi in the southern Philippines – and, of course, Duterte’s War on Drugs will come up too.

International spectaculars such as this provide the media with access they dream about. There’ll be shoals of other state heads present at that summit, but these three will be the main ones the press will have their lines out for. This triumvirate of world leaders, Trump, Putin, Duterte (photo, L to R), are the prize blue marlin they really want to catch.

The Liberal/Left media dislike them more than any others – even more than North Korea’s Supreme Leader, Kim Jong-Un and Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei. And the reason for that is that, unlike that pair, they’re all heads of large democracies. And they’re also hugely popular at the grassroots of their nations. These then are the big fish they want to land; the ones that keep breaking their lines.

There’s no good mainstream press for Trump, Putin or Duterte; virtually all coverage of them is negative from a Western media cabal that’s almost exclusively in the hands of Liberals. And its members will go to almost any lengths to net them and throw them on the slab.

They’ve attempted to rekindle the Cold War – the post World War II standoff between the West and the Eastern bloc centred on the former Soviet Union – by driving a wedge between Trump and Putin. They’ve done this largely with allegations of collusion during last year’s US presidential election which brought Trump to power. So far, however, there’s been no actual proof of that.

At the same time they’ve underplayed the Kim threat – in fact to such a degree that the vast majority of US Democrats regard Trump as more dangerous than the North Korean leader. That fact was revealed in a recent Rasmussen poll.

They’ve also attempted to sour relations between Trump and Duterte – which might seem odd seeing as how they were fretting over a breakdown in the US relationship between Trump’s predecessor, Barack Obama and Duterte this time last year. But then as we all know, this parody of a press is extremely fickle.

We can practically guarantee, therefore that the Asean Summit will generate very little positive coverage for any of these leaders. The mainstream’s dutiful “reporting” teams will be deployed to Manila to write about human-rights failures in the Philippines and the support for those failures of both Trump and Putin. That, almost certainly, will be the main story.

So, our question is this: Do we need a mainstream media – one that anchors and angles its stories to its own unapologetic Liberal agenda?

Among the 10 Asean leaders who’ll also be present in November, there isn’t one which the Western mainstream media particularly likes. Duterte’s definitely at the top of their hit list, followed by Indonesia’s Joko Widodo.

Then it’s a toss up between the leaders of the military-heavy states of Thailand and Myanmar, and what are effectively the one-party communist states of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia – countries which many of the ‘anglers’ to be flown in to trawl the summit would have trouble finding on a map. But Malaysia’s Najib Razak and Brunei’s Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah are also fish they’d like to fry.

Singapore, however, is slightly different – although Western media detest the political leadership there, they’re extremely careful not to cause it offence. Singapore doesn’t mess around where its media critics are concerned. If they give offence they’re likely to have the pants sued off them and banned from operating in the city state. The heads of the large news corporations don’t want that – it would hit them too hard in the pocket – so they tread far more carefully there.

But don’t we really deserve better than all that? The media haven’t been elected; they appointed themselves. They don’t represent the people in any shape or form; they represent their own narrow views. They’re not a democratic institution – they’re an institution made possible by the democracies in which they operate. Actually, they abuse democracy.

Their purpose is not to inform but to indoctrinate; not to support democracy but to change governments at will; to remove leaders who don’t share their world vision and replace them with their puppets. They are, then, democracy’s biggest single enemy. So why do we need them?

What’s more, they don’t relay news; they use news as a vehicle to disseminate their Liberal credo. They’re no longer watchdogs as originally intended; they’re lapdogs of Liberal/Left political parties and progressive ideologues. They are, then, the biggest single enemy of news. So why do we need them?

Freedom of the press – along with freedom of expression and freedom of speech – are vital. They’re the rights which every single human being on God’s Earth should be entitled to. Yet these media feel they have the right to decide what views should be allowed; what opinions should be permitted expression. They are, then, the biggest single enemy of those freedoms. So, again, why do we need them?

We know you have strong feelings about this, as we do. Don’t hold back; let’s hear them.

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