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Pornhub Reveals How Much Porn We Watched In 2016 — Here’s Why It’s An Issue

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What we expose our minds to can literally alter our reality. Every movie you watch, every book you read, and every song you listen to shapes your perception, and thus the way you perceive your reality. So, if you’re watching porn, how do you think that affects your psyche and your overall human experience?

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What does that do to your expectations surrounding your sex life and how does it shape sex culture as a whole? To start, let’s take a look at Pornhub’s 4th annual Year in Review report, which outlines just how much porn we watch.

The ‘Dirty Details’ of Pornhub’s 2016 Year in Review Report

For the fourth year in a row, online porn giant Pornhub has dug deep and consolidated their data to help us understand how much porn the world watches. On Pornhub alone, online users collectively watched 91,980,225,000 pornographic videos. That translates to 64 million videos watched per day or 44,000 videos watched per minute. If you were to stretch the number of hours it would take to watch all of that across a timeline, it’s 5,246 centuries worth of hours.

Not surprisingly, the U.S. had the highest number of views per capita and the highest level of traffic. This could be seen across some of the topics that trended during 2016 on Pornhub. For example, following election day in the U.S., Pornhub experienced an 874% increase in the number of searches for President Donald Trump. His daughter, Tiffany, experienced an even greater leap, as her number of searches was up by 2,548%, and future First Lady Melania jumped up by 1,538%.

The report goes on to list the most popular search items, categories, times to watch videos, porn stars, and more. You can check out the full report here.

Clearly, the amount of porn we watch is increasing and it has been for quite a few years. I say ‘we’ because even if you don’t watch porn or aren’t a frequent user, it’s still affecting the collective consciousness. This becomes clearer when you actually consider our current sex culture and the way society views and experiences sex.

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So, What Does Watching Porn Do To Us?

If you’ve never considered what the issue is with watching porn, that’s completely understandable. We live in a society where sex is devalued, and at the same time it’s encouraged and normalized. It’s commonplace to have sex with multiple partners and to masturbate while watching porn. We live in a system that further perpetuates this type of sex culture, which ultimately further disconnects us from one another.

To understand this concept, check out the following excerpt from an article written by Brett and Kate McKay called “The Problem With Porn“:

Pornography is such a polarizing issue, that it’s easy for people to take extreme sides when approaching it. Oftentimes, religious people, while very sincere in their beliefs, brand porn as vile filth that turns good men into sexual perverts and unclean lepers. I’ve sat through plenty of church sermons where porn is approached this way. However, such a approach hardly helps men rationally think through the issue. Rather it transforms porn into an even more desirable forbidden fruit, pushes porn consumption into a secretive underground fetish,  and prevents men from being honest in their need for help.

The other extreme sees porn as just a healthy expression of sexuality. Pornography is heartily encouraged in order to help people discover what pleases them sexually, no matter how graphic or violent the material is. The people in this camp will argue that as long as consenting adults are involved and no one gets hurt, then anything goes. However, this approach fails to recognize the detrimental effects porn can have on an individual, on women, and on society.

We live in a dualistic world, so it makes sense for many people to have polarizing beliefs that are considered ‘opposite sides of the spectrum.’ We went from one end, suppressing our natural instincts and sexual nature, to the complete opposite, running wild and sleeping with many partners. There’s nothing inherently wrong with this; in fact, this makes perfect sense. Living in a dualistic world, it’s completely understandable that we’d create these polar opposites when it comes to our views on sex.

When religion was running the show and governed what was considered socially acceptable, sex was frowned upon, especially if you were unmarried. However, when these beliefs were overthrown (at least somewhat) and people started to exercise greater freedom, society started to shift their comfort levels with sexuality.

We began to rebel and to explore our sexual desires in ways we hadn’t before, especially around the time of the Women’s Rights movement. Then, corporations decided to capitalize on this opportunity, so porn was born and we started to see more sex in films, in music, and in the media. TV shows and movies tell us that it’s completely normal for us to have sex with multiple partners with “no attachments,” and we’ve clearly listened.

Since porn is a form of entertainment, it needs to be enjoyable to watch. As a result, the porn stars and the sexual acts filmed are far from what’s considered normal. However, since so many people’s first sexual experiences happen directly through porn, it creates unrealistic (and often unhealthy) expectations for them. This can continue to affect people throughout their lives, even while they’re having sex in real life. Many people who watch porn regularly state that it completely alters their sexual experiences, as they have difficulty staying present in the moment while having sex.

There’s no shortage of issues within the porn industry: child pornography, violence, associating pain with pleasure, rape, pedophilia, disconnection, objectification, and more. Even the U.S. government has recognized the addictive nature of porn and the issues associated with watching it. The state of Utah tried to issue a bill in response to these concerns, stating pornography is “a public health hazard leading to a broad spectrum of individual and public health impacts and societal harms.” You can read more about that in our CE article here.

Porn is clearly addictive, but why? What is it in our lives that so many people feel they’re lacking and need to use pornography to replace? I would argue that it’s connection and love, and that people falsely associate sex with these things. Yes, sex can be a way to connect with people, but it’s not the only way. Sex also isn’t the only way for people to find love; looking for love through a romantic relationship isn’t always the answer. You can find that exact same love within yourself, which perhaps many porn addicts are missing.

When it all comes down to it, sex is an activity we have the free will to partake in for a reason. Yes, that reason may be because it allows us to reproduce, but I also believe there is a much deeper meaning behind sex, one that many of us have forgotten because the porn industry and sex culture are blinding us from  it. Sex can be an extremely spiritual and fun experience if you allow it to be, and I believe it’s intended to be through tantric sex.

Energetic Implications of Having Sex 

Have you ever discussed a certain subject with a friend and felt badly for them? Perhaps you got angry for them, felt sadness because of their situation, or simply felt empathetic? From an energetic perspective, this is because you’re vulnerable to their frequencies. It is said that you should choose your five closest friends wisely for this reason, because their vibration will affect your own. I would argue that you should exercise caution when choosing your sexual partners for this exact same reason.

If you’re having sex with someone, an act that physically connects you in the deepest way possible, it makes sense that their energy would be imposed on you. Furthermore, it is said that when you have sex with someone, their aura leaves an imprint on you that is difficult to energetically cleanse yourself from. So, if you’re sleeping with someone who has slept with ten people in the past, and that individual hasn’t cleansed themselves from their former partners’ energies before, you may be susceptible to eleven people’s energies.

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Despite this, I still believe it is healthy to have sex, especially if you’re cleansing yourself energetically (check out this CE article here). I also think sex can be used as a tool to deepen our inherent love and connection to one another through practicing tantra. Tantra is the Sanskrit word for ‘woven together,’ and through the study and practice of it you can come to understand yourself better on a spiritual level. After all, by exploring yourself sexually, whether that’s on your own or with a partner, you’re ultimately just learning more about yourself, and thus more about Source.

Porn teaches us that sex is only physical, but in reality it’s so much more than that. Sex isn’t about what it looks like, it’s about the feeling you get, the energetic shift you experience, and the intimacy you share with your partner. We are so much more than our physical bodies, and believe it or not, sex can actually teach us that! So, I challenge you to explore your sexuality without the use of porn. Who knows, maybe in searching for a more connective sex life, you’ll end up finding yourself along the way.

Related CE Articles:

Why This Man Stopped Watching Porn Gives Us All Something To Consider

Porn vs Tantra – Disturbing Facts About Modern Day Sex We Should All Consider

The Science Of Pornography Addiction & What It Can Do To Your Brain

Tantra Is The Opposite Of Porn – Learning How To Actually Be Intimate

How To Unlock Deeper & More Connected Sex In 5 Minutes

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UFOs Spotted Off The Irish Coast By Airline Pilots – Here Are The Details

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Multiple pilots recently reported a fast travelling UFO that seemed to have taken corrective measured and made maneuvers at very high speeds.

  • Reflect On:

    There thousands of reports of radar trackings which exist, and multiple events that've occurred involving commercial pilots. What is going on in our skies?

A pilot flying from Montreal, Canada to Heathrow airport in the UK spotted “a very bright light” that had come up along the left side of their aircraft before it “rapidly veered to the north.” This is a common characteristic of UFOs that have been spotted by both airline and military pilots since the dawn of human aviation. The older our civilization gets, the more time we spend in the air and the higher we climb, the more reports of strange objects seem to arise.

She wondered what it could be, but said it did not seem to be heading for a collision. When I read this, I thought of Ex-Canadian Defense Minister Paul Hellyer’s comments stating that these objects often performed evasive maneuvers when in the vicinity of our aircraft.  Unfortunately, he stated that as the jets scrambled to look closer at the UFOs, they were ordered to “shoot first, and ask questions later.” Add that to Apollo 14 astronaut Edgar Mitchell’s statement that, “yes, there has been crashed craft, and bodies recovered,” and we can deduce that the protocol, in the military at least, is to try and shoot these things down. That doesn’t seem like a very intelligent approach.

This topic goes far beyond witness testimony from some very credible people; there is electrooptical data and physical evidence that has been associated with this phenomenon as well. These objects are not only seen by pilots, they’re also tracked on radar.

Glowing Orbs Over Ireland

At least three pilots were involved in witnessing glowing orbs that were spotted near Shannon, Ireland at “astronomical” speeds,  according to the Guardian:

Other aircraft flying in the area reported the same thing. A pilot, flying a Virgin Airlines plane from Orlando to Manchester described the sight as a “meteor or another object making some kind of re-entry,” adding it seemed to be “multiple objects following the same sort of trajectory – very bright from where we were.” Another pilot also weighed in, saying: “Glad I’m not the only one.” A spokesman for the Irish Aviation Authority told the Irish Times it was investigating the incident and would file a report. “This report will be investigated under the normal confidential occurrence investigation process.”

There were multiple objects reports here, and meteors do not veer off at astronomical speeds. The pilots reported seeing one object become multiple objects, which is common in UFO lore. I’ve been studying the subject for more than a decade, so it didn’t surprise me. Identifying this as a ‘meteor’ may comfort some people reading about this incident in the mainstream, because it fits within their current perception. But more and more people are having to face the fact that these incidents clearly do not fit within the mainstream paradigm of reality, and we really need to go through the discomfort of breaking this paradigm in our own minds if we hope to arrive at the truth of what is going on.

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Other Incidents

There are many corroborating incidents out there of even more ‘jaw-dropping’ proportions, from the perspective of the pilots involved. With regards to commercial aviation, perhaps the most well-documented incident is the one that took place at O’Hare international airport. It caused a shutdown of the entire airport, similar to an incident that took place in China a few years ago.

Here’s a quote from December 16th, 1978, issued by the Chilean Air Force with regards to a UFO encounter, similar to what the Pentagon released. Again, keep in mind, this is something that’s happened thousands of times over the past few decades, and perhaps thousands of times every single year:

“Two pilots on a training mission, each flying an F5 fighter aircraft, tracked the object on their airborne radar. It gave a return equal to ten or more aircraft carriers-except this object was in the air, not floating on the water. Each pilot assumed his radar equipment was faulty until he learned that the other pilot was also getting the same return. Not only this, but ground radar from a nearby airport also picked up the object and confirmed its huge size. The pilots also saw the object with their own eyes. One pilot later said that at a distance of twenty miles, it looked “like a plantain banana swathed in smoke.” The pilots were frightened, having no missiles or weapons. As they approached the massive object, which had been motionless all this while, it took off at an unimaginable speed. All at once, it vanished from the three radar screens.”(1)(2)

This document from the CIA, relays several pieces of information, with the part about these UFOs highlighted in brackets, which suggests special attention was being paid to it. It goes to show just how interested they were in it, and how important this topic is within the intelligence community:

“ANTARCTIC FLYING SAUCERS” – A group of red, green, and yellow flying saucers has been seen flying over Deception Island for two hours by Argentine, Chilean and British bases (military) in Antarctica. The flying saucers were also seen flying in formation over the South Orkney islands in quick circles.”

We’ve written a number of articles about numerous UFO sightings. The point is, it’s happening, but for decades we’ve been brushing a lot of these sightings off as natural phenomena, if we even hear about them. There are millions of pages of documents and thousands of examples like the ones above. They’ve been studying it for years under the guise of “national security,” a term now used to classify everything, but more and more we are learning that this is done to protect the interests of the global elite as well as allow them to basically do whatever they please, with justification.

The “Anchorage” Incident is a well known UFO event involving a veteran Japanese airline pilot who saw three UFOs following his 747 aircraft carrier for over 400 miles. One of the objects was much larger than the 747, while the other two were smaller. The crewmen of JAL Flight 1628 reported seeing flashing lights trailing their jet to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). FAA officials confirmed the conclusions drawn from the controller who handled Flight 1628 on his radar. His conclusion was that the aircraft were unidentified. Air Force officials at the Alaska Air Command also said their radar picked up something near the JAL plane. The United States Air Force scrambled a jet to get a closer look at the object. This incident occurred in 1986.

Below is an interview with retired FA Senior Division Chief, John Callahan. Check out his testimony below given to Dr. Steven Greer. He was directly involved with this incident, it is amazing to hear his story and the events that transpired because of it.

The Takeaway

The disclosure of the existence of UFOs has been confirmed around the world by multiple nations. Secrecy dominates our world, and important information about the nature of our reality is being kept from us. Not only that, but our own money is being taken from us to finance this continued secrecy. I recently wrote an article about a Michigan State University economist who headed up a group that found trillions of unaccounted-for dollars missing from housing & D.O.D. that were funnelled into black budget projects. You can read that here.

The implications of these revelations are huge and would result in huge changes in all areas of humanity. But one reason why secrecy has been so rampant is that powerful controlling forces don’t want us to look closer and think critically about the nature of our reality, and about who we really are. The extraterrestrial hypothesis provides a valid explanation for some of the questions we are now asking, and it’s getting more difficult to ignore the evidence for intelligent visitation like we used to. The sooner we are able to handle and process the evidence coming before us and its implications, the sooner we will live from a deeper understanding of ourselves and the nature of our universe.

Sources not linked within the article:

(1) Huneeus, J, Antonio, “A Chilean Overview,” MUFON UFO Journal, 6/86; Huneeus, J. Antonio, “A Historical Survey of UFO Cases in Chilie,” MUFON 1987 International Symposium Proceedings (MUFON, 1987.)

(2) Department of Defense JCS Message Center, Subject: B6/BAF Has a Close Encounter of the First Kind. Date: 20 May 86. Subject: Numerous Unidentified Objects Were Cited in the Skies over Brazil. But BAF Fighters Were Unable to Intercept Them. Berliner, Don, The UFO Briefing Document, p. 121-127. Huneeus, J. Antonio, “UFO Alert in Brazil,” MUFON UFO Journal, 11/86. Andrus, Walt, “UFOs Over Brazil,” MUFON UFO Journal, 9/86. Smith, Dr Willy, “The Brazillian Incident,” International UFO Reporter, 7-8/86. Smith, Dr. Willy, “More on Brazilian OVNIs,” MUFON UFO Journal, 9/86.

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Serious Errors Found In Widely Cited Global Warming Study

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A study claiming that the Earth’s oceans have retained 60% more heat than previously thought over the last 25 years, suggesting global warming was much worse than previously believed, has turned out to be false.

  • Reflect On:

    Many scientists within the field have been quite outspoken about the politicization of climate science, and how it's a serious problem. We see it in all fields, like the medical field, for example. Ridicule has been used to suppress discussion.

There is a troubling trend among internet readers, and that’s the fact that billions of people area reading titles of an article and having a bad reaction before reading the actual article and examining the sources. The bad reaction usually comes when evidence is presented which strongly goes against the widely accepted belief held by the majority of people. This type of evidence is often ridiculed by the mainstream media, which is why the majority of people believe what they do in the first place.

We have been subjected to massive amounts of ‘mind-persuasion’ on various topics. Today, when evidence goes against the grain, especially when it threatens many political and financial interests, false evidence is manufactured in order to counter the actual evidence. This has happened in all areas that touch humanity. I refer to it as the politicization of science, in this case, climate science. We’ve seen this everywhere, especially with medical science.

“The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue. . . . Science has taken a turn towards darkness.” – Dr. Richard Horton, Editor in Chief of The Lancet (source)

Now, just to be clear, this article is NOT debating climate change. Drastic and unexpected climate change and natural disasters are rampant right now on our planet, for multiple reasons. It’s clearly a problem that needs to be fixed and could have been fixed/mitigated decades ago, yet we still seem stuck. Revolutionary technologies have been in existence for a long time, from solar, to wind, to vortex-induced vibrations and over-unity energy technology. Many of them have been subjected to patent suppression and secrecy, for “natural security” purposes. Meanwhile, it’s this national security apparatus that have created a breakaway civilization, one that’s become highly technologically advanced. They use these technologies, not for the benefit of humanity, but it seems more so, for their own purposes and the enslavement of humanity.

All that being said, climate change is, in my opinion, the result of multiple factors that go beyond human beings. These include natural cycles Earth has gone through before in it’s past, the activity of our sun, etc…

Again, I am not denying climate change, I am not even denying anthropomorphic climate change. I’m simply pointing towards the politicization of science. Something fishy is happening.

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In fact, approximately more than thirty thousand scientists have all signed a petition regarding the political agenda of global warming. The scientific consensus, which includes over 9,000 scientists with Ph.D.s, is the real scientific consensus. There is no real source for the “97” percent of scientists agreeing, that’s false information.

Warmer Oceans?

Princeton scientist Laure Resplandy (pictured above) and researchers at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography recently published a study claiming that the Earth’s oceans have retained 60% more heat than previously thought over the last 25 years, suggesting global warming was much worse than previously believed. The reported was beamed out by multiple establishment mouthpieces, including the Washington Post, New York Times, BBC, Reuters and others.

Independent scientist Nic Lewis found the study had “apparently serious (but surely inadvertent) errors in the underlying calculations.” Lewis’ findings were quickly corroborated by another researcher. The post appeared on the website of Judith A. Curry, an American climatologist and former chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology. She has been one of the many outspoken scientists in the field the “tribal nature” of parts of the climate-science community, and what she sees as stonewalling over the release of data and its analysis for independent review.

Lewis corrected the math area, and found that the paper’s rate of ocean warming “is about average compared with other estimates they showed, and below the average for 1993-2016.” Roger Pike Jr., a Professor at the University of Colorado, tweet his work and replicated the data. Key phrase: “It’s a big error at the core of the paper’s findings.”

It seems that the majority of climate scientists all support this type of fraudulent data, and the problem of political interests taking over what the science is actually saying.

Lewis found the study’s authors, led by Princeton University scientist Laure Resplandy, erred in calculating the linear trend of estimated ocean warming between 1991 and 2016. Lewis has also criticized climate model predictions, which generally over-predict warming. Resplandy and her colleagues estimated ocean heat by measuring the volume of carbon dioxide and oxygen in the atmosphere. The results: the oceans took up 60 percent more heat than previously thought. The study only sent alarm bells ringing, especially in the wake of the United Nations’ latest climate 

Laure Resplandy, the author of the widely distributed and cited study, has recently replied, acknowledging the error. Although the reply comes from an establishment mouthpiece, one that ridicules any questioning of anthropomorphic climate change via carbon output.

Below is a brief interview with Curry.

The Politicization Of Climate Science

Again, we need to be looking at deforestation, the lack of disclosure of new energy technologies, and the lack of implementation of new ones. We need to be looking at the destruction of our Earth and the poisoning of our water and soil, more so than we do our carbon output. But carbon is very heavily focused on.

The politicization of climate science is something that’s vouched for by the majority of actual climate scientists.

It’s hard to talk about because I am a proponent of clean energy technologies, and they are a must. Our industries and our usage of pollution services, like the automobile industry, is a toxic and environmental health hazard. But the global elite are very smart, they are using climate change, and global warming, to basically cause climate hysteria for political and financial gains.

The “97 percent” tagline is often used to demonize those who question anthropogenic induced climate change, and the mainstream media will do their best to make those who question it, no matter their background, credentials, or credibility, look foolish.

Ivar Giaever, a Norwegian-American physicist who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1973, compares current climate science to pseudoscience.

Dr. Richard Lindzen, among many others, refers to this type of narrative as hysteria and argues that climate scientists raising this issue have been demonized. He’s one of the world’s top experts in the field and lead author of “Physical Climate Processes and Feedbacks,” Chapter 7 of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Third Assessment Report on climate change.

He is a  dynamical meteorologist with interests in the broad topics of climate, planetary waves, monsoon meteorology, planetary atmospheres, and hydrodynamic instability. He has made major contributions to the development of the current theory for the Hadley Circulation and pioneered the study of how ozone photochemistry, radiative transfer, and dynamics interact with each other. He is also the Emeritus Sloan Professor of Meteorology at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

A slide from one of his lectures below states:

Global warming is about politics and power rather than science. In science, there is an attempt to clarify; in global warming, language is misused in order to confuse and mislead the public. The misuse of language extends to the misuse of models. For advocated of policies allegedly addressing global warming, the role of models is not to predict but rather to justify the claim that catastrophe is possible. As they understand, proving something to be impossible is itself almost impossible.

I am using him as one of many examples. pointed out how policymakers were heavily involved with the IPCC and their publications. He is one of many to do so. Here’s a video in which he did try to bring awareness to what climate scientists REALLY believe. It’s quite contrary to the climate hysteria we see that’s constantly beamed. Right now it’s happening with forests fires, which have been happening for hundreds of millions of years.

Why No Mention of Climate Engineering?

What about climate engineering? Geoengineering is the manipulation of the atmosphere through artificial means.

The US Air Force has the capability to manipulate climate either for testing purposes or for outright military-intelligence use.  These capabilities extend to the triggering of floods, hurricanes, droughts, and earthquakes.

Weather modification will become a part of domestic and international security and could be done unilaterally… It could have offensive and defensive applications and even be used for deterrence  purposes. The ability to generate precipitation, fog, and storms on earth or to modify space weather, … and the production of artificial weather all are a part of an integrated set of technologies which can provide substantial increase in US, or degraded capability in an adversary, to achieve global awareness, reach, and power. (Air University of the US Air Force, AF 2025 Final Report, http://www.au.af.mil/au/2025/ . Emphasis added)

We’ve covered this topic in depth in multiple articles, and right now, geoengineering is being proposed as a solution to climate change, or what scientists above mentioned as ‘climate hysteria.’ The weather today is largely manufactured and owned, it’s changed and manipulated for various reasons. It’s hard to tell what’s actually going on. Here’s a clip of Ex-Cia director voicing his support for geoengineering…

Climate hysteria can be created, as much as terrorism can in order to create the war on terrorism…

The Takeaway

You could literally write a book on how the majority of reputable scientists within the field of Climate Science, and the ones actually involved with the IPCC, are all concerned about these things. As many of these scientists have pointed out, at a certain point, the final drafts and publications are taken over and written by politicians and policymakers.

There is a big problem here, and the elite who seem to be behind this type of thing, have been using their tools for years (mass media, education, etc..) to drill this idea in the people’s heads. Climate initiatives are being supported like war was with mass propaganda, our hearts and care for Mother Earth are being taken advantage of and capitalized on. Those who question the official narrative of global climate change are often the ones who care about Earth the most. This is one of the reasons it is so important for the awakening community to strive for the truth, and then to bring out that truth widely. The future of our planet hangs in the balance.

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CNN Takes Trump To Court: Is He Winning The War Against Fake News?

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A heated exchange between Donald Trump and CNN reporter Jim Acosta at a White House Press Briefing has led to Acosta losing his press pass, accusations of video doctoring, and a lawsuit claiming White House violations of the 1st and 5th amendments.

  • Reflect On:

    Does this battle represent a flashpoint in the larger battle between the Alliance and the Deep State? If so, what is our role in this?

Once a model of journalistic integrity and governmental decorum, the White House press conference seems to have devolved into a verbal street brawl of mutual disrespect between President Donald Trump and Mainstream Media. But at a deeper level, it has become Ground Zero for the battle for our collective perception of reality.

The notion that Mainstream Media is in the business of ‘framing’ a perception of events to suit a particular agenda is something that the public is beginning to awaken to in larger numbers. Now this is not to say that the President does not frame a perception of events as well. We have long known that all politicians do this. The difference is that President Trump does it to look good, be popular, and ultimately to be able to do what he believes are positive things for American citizens. The agenda behind the Mainstream Media is the destruction of American sovereignty and the implementation of a global power structure of enslavement. If we look at the ‘Acosta Incident’ through this lens, then an understanding of exactly why this is happening at this time comes into focus.

The Acosta Incident

The ‘Acosta Incident’ essentially involves CNN Journalist Jim Acosta asking questions to President Trump, being told by the President that he is done with Acosta and is moving on to the next reporter, and Acosta resisting attempts on the part of a young White House intern to take the microphone from him, actually using his arm to physically impede her arm from reaching over to take the microphone. Here is a full video of the incident:

As we can see in the video, the journalists (not only Acosta but the subsequent one) are spending most of their airtime building a narrative, finishing their statements with a slanted yes/no question which they already know the answer to. They try to characterize a given situation (i.e. Acosta saying that the ‘caravan’ is not an ‘invasion’) and basically trying to refute the President’s characterization. There is no real attempt here to inquire, to get new information, to listen to what the President has to say. And of course the President also replies with his own narrative-building.

In a way, this has long been the dynamic in White House press conferences, but never in history have journalists tried to single-mindedly frame a narrative in such a combative way. No doubt one could look at Donald Trump’s direct assault on Mainstream news as ‘Fake News,’ it has added much fuel to the fire. Objectively speaking, though, it would be hard to argue that Jim Acosta has not crossed a line of propriety in physically restraining a young woman from taking the microphone from him at the President’s request.

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Sarah Sanders’ Tweet

It cannot come as a shock to the objective observer that the White House believes it had grounds to revoke Jim Acosta’s press pass. In this CNN article, which denies any wrongdoing on the part of CNN or any apology for Jim Acosta, we see the narrative-building verbiage in full regalia:

CNN said in a statement that Acosta has the network’s full support. The revocation of his pass “was done in retaliation for his challenging questions at today’s press conference,” the statement said. “In an explanation, Press Secretary Sarah Sanders lied. She provided fraudulent accusations and cited an incident that never happened. This unprecedented decision is a threat to our democracy and the country deserves better.”

I’m sorry–is there anybody reading this article that is buying the claim that the revocation of his pass “was done in retaliation for his challenging questions at today’s press conference.”? Wow, not even a MENTION of Acosta’s physical contact with the intern. A tweet by White House Press Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, without audio, makes graphically clear what the White House, and, it must be said, any objective observer, would highlight as the reason his pass was revoked:

Now as we will see, the ‘source’ of her video, which shows 4 consecutive close-ups to drive the point home, is notable. According to this Wired article,

The video posted by Sanders appears identical to a video shared two hours earlier by Paul Joseph Watson, an editor-at-large at the right-wing media site InfoWars. Both videos were edited in the same way and had no sound. While the White House hasn’t responded to inquiries about the source of the video posted by Sanders, it seems reasonable to say that the chance the two videos were created independently is extraordinarily low.

Claims The Video Was ‘Doctored’

Not long after the tweet, claims that the White House was using a ‘doctored’ video, or that they had ‘doctored’ it themselves, began to pop up widely across Mainstream Media. Video experts were being called on to explain a frame-dropping or frame-pausing technique that was said to have made Acosta’s wrist restraining the intern’s arm look more like a ‘karate chop.’ Here is one of many videos up now explaining this:

And here is Infowars’ Paul Joseph Watson’s reaction to the claims that he doctored the video:

Even as a video editor myself, I don’t know whether this video was doctored or not. Either one of the arguments above seem to have some logic, and it would take me a lot more time and effort to get to the bottom of it, time and effort I certainly don’t want to spend. Why? Because it really doesn’t matter.

While it would be possible that Watson would go through the trouble of doctoring a video to have a slight, barely perceptible effect of seeming more aggressive, the fact of the matter is, as Watson points out in his video,

‘The media invented a giant conspiracy theory to distract from a real controversy…Sarah Sanders was right. Jim Acosta put his hands on a woman. He used his strength to overpower her, and that’s clearly seen in the video. Does that mean he assaulted her? No. It doesn’t. But he clearly used his hand, his wrist, and his arm to push her away…don’t take my word for it, go and watch the footage yourself and come to your own conclusions.’

CNN continues to reference Sanders’ tweet as ‘a distorted video clip of the press conference that didn’t show the complete back-and-forth. The same video had been posted by an InfoWars personality two hours earlier.’ To persuade those people who don’t investigate all the facts and rely on the validity of the narrative, these kinds of phrases and talking points are essential.

CNN Sues The White House

Now, it looks like the battle of narratives is headed for court. CNN has filed a lawsuit against the President and top aides for banning Acosta, believing his 1st and 5th amendment rights are being violated.

In an interview on Tuesday morning, [attorney Ted] Boutrous said CNN tried to resolve the matter privately, but the White House was not responsive so “we really had no choice but to sue.” “We didn’t want to have to go to court. We wanted to just report the news,” he said. “Mr. Acosta wants to report the news. CNN wants to report the news.”

If the full clip of Jim Acosta’s tactics and line of questioning are those of a journalist who ‘just wants to report the news,’ I must be missing something. Of course it should come as no surprise that CNN is using all of its rhetorical devices to characterize itself as the victim here. But more and more, those speaking on behalf of the Alliance are also firing up their rhetoric to continue to pound away at the ‘fake news’ characterization of mainstream media, trying to reveal to the public the hidden agenda behind machinations like those of Acosta. Here is the response of Sarah Sanders and the White House to the lawsuit:

“We have been advised that CNN has filed a complaint challenging the suspension of Jim Acosta’s hard pass. This is just more grandstanding from CNN, and we will vigorously defend against this lawsuit.
CNN, who has nearly 50 additional hard pass holders, and Mr. Acosta is no more or less special than any other media outlet or reporter with respect to the First Amendment. After Mr. Acosta asked the President two questions—each of which the President answered—he physically refused to surrender a White House microphone to an intern, so that other reporters might ask their questions. This was not the first time this reporter has inappropriately refused to yield to other reporters.
The White House cannot run an orderly and fair press conference when a reporter acts this way, which is neither appropriate nor professional. The First Amendment is not served when a single reporter, of more than 150 present, attempts to monopolize the floor. If there is no check on this type of behavior it impedes the ability of the President, the White House staff, and members of the media to conduct business.”

This is an interesting fight in that it seems like a flash point whose outcome might indicate the relative strength of the two heavyweights, the Alliance fronted by Donald Trump, and the Deep State as mouthpieced by Mainstream Media. It’s hard to know who is more up for this battle, to be honest. It will be interesting to see how this particular battle plays out.

The Takeaway

As usual, our discernment is required for sifting through these battles of conflicting narratives. The more we are able to find where the truth lies, and the more people that gain this power of discernment, the less we will have to live through the drama that is playing out in front of us. Living our lives in truth is our ultimate destination.

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