By comparison to the previous post-war consensus, and in a subsequent period when the UK Guardian newspaper was yet still marginally deemed worthy of progressive submissions, Noam Chomsky and colleagues made the following letters page observations about UK media’s “conditioning” of the public, with regard to normalising the new US-UK-Western imperialism and particularly, absenting its death toll. They wrote:
In May 2013 the reputable polling company ComRes asked a representative sample of the British public the following question: “How many Iraqis, both combatants and civilians, do you think have died as a consequence of the war that began in Iraq in 2003?” According to 59 percent of the respondents, fewer than 10,000 Iraqis died as a result of the war. The results are especially shocking because … The latest scientific estimate of the death toll from the war is almost 500,000. This was published in PLOS Medicine. Two previous studies, also published in peer-reviewed scientific journals, suggest the death toll may possibly have been closer to a million. Only 6 percent of the respondents in the ComRes poll estimated more than 500,000 Iraqi deaths. Only 0.3 percent said they didn’t know or declined to give an estimate. The ComRes poll is powerful evidence that the media misled the public about the consequences of the war.
The above extract from an article by Gavin Lewis, a friend, does not specifically address Scottish issues but offers several insights into the behaviour of state and corporate media which you may recognise and which we can all learn from:
The Scottish media coverage of hospital and care home deaths in the last year and more will surely have led to a similar but inverse, to reflect the power differentials here, ‘conditioning of the public’, to magnify the level of death, to direct the blame away from the corporate and private owners and toward the democratically elected, but status quo-challenging, SNP Government.
Footnote: The unintentional inclusion of the book ‘Big Farms Make Big Flu‘ in the crop above seems worth pursuing too in this time.