cj#1079> re: What is ‘the matrix’?


Richard Moore

From: •••@••.•••
Date: Tue, 28 Mar 2000 21:12:49 EST
Subject: Re: cj#1077> Beware of humanitarians bearing gifts
To: •••@••.•••

Dear Richard,

I need some enlightenment.  I don't understand what "matrix"
means as you use it.  Is it because I didn't see the film of
the same name?  (There was such a film, was there not?)  Or
is it a new-fangled cyberword which I haven't caught up with
yet?  Please help, this isn't the first time the same word
has thrown me.



Dear Bill,

A very good question.  The reference is to the film, which I
recommend.  In the film, our everyday perceived reality
turns out to be a collective dream, facilitated by some kind
of virtual reality software known as 'The Matrix.  In the
actual reality of the film, people are literally asleep,
cocooned in grotesque embryonic pods.  Everyone believes
matrix reality is real, and would never believe in a million
years their true condition, unless they could somehow wake
up and see it for themselves.

Whether or not intentionally, I believe the film works very
well as a metaphor for the poltical condition of American
society. There is a fabricated reality, projected by the
mass media, in which the "international community" takes
action for purely humanitarian reasons, where the nation is
run democratically, where growth is the only path to
prosperity, and where capitalism is the only way things can
be.  And then there is actual reality.  The two are as
dramatically different as are the two film realities.

Matrix reality is consensus reality. Those who are captured
by it need to wake up from it if things are going to change.
In the film 'Morpheus' says "The Matrix is the world they
pulled down over your eyes to hide you from the truth... As
long as the matrix exists, humanity cannot be free."  I
think that sums up our situation.


Date: Tue, 28 Mar 2000 03:30:25 -0600
To: •••@••.•••
From: Mark Douglas Whitaker <•••@••.•••>
Subject: beriberi and pellagra [cj#1077> 
                                Beware of humanitarians bearing gifts]

I would appreciate anyone telling me how someone can
'infect' and "expose" people to diseases which are
nutritional deficiencies? Beriberi and pellagra are
nutritional deficiencies. I would have appreciated a bit
more from CounterPunch than this undocumented screed.
Despite agreeing with its point, this kind of lumping in
everything under the sun plus leaving it undocumented only
serves to help people rationalize that EVERYTHING is made up
as well, which I am sure was far from the intention.
Mark Whitaker
        ber-i-ber-i (br-br) n. 
        A disease caused by a deficiency of thiamine, endemic in
        eastern and southern Asia and characterized by neurological
        symptoms, cardiovascular abnormalities, and edema.

        pel-lag-ra (p-lgr, -l-, -lägr) n. 
        A disease caused by a deficiency of niacin and protein in
        the diet and characterized by skin eruptions, digestive and
        nervous system disturbances, and eventual mental


Dear Mark,

I believe there are possiblities you are not considering. 
There might be toxic agents which directly attack organs
which are normally affected by one of the diseases you
mention. People in the field would then interpret the
symptoms as indicating the standard diseases they are familiar
with. A reporter would have no reason not to report their
conclusions, unless he or she happened to be familiar with
the medical information you cite.  In that case, the wording
could have been changed to '...caused symptoms which
resembled those of beri-beri...'.

If those are your only two objections, I find the tone of
your criticism a bit harsh.  This is hardly 'lumping in
everything under the sun', and whether the symptoms were
misdiagnosed and mis-reported is not relevant to the claim
that toxic agents were intentionally and covertly employed.

Your concern is not for yourself, but rather for those
readers who would reject the whole piece due to these
possible errors.  Many, however, would not notice. Of those
who would notice, many might realize that the diagnosis is
not really the issue.  Of the rest, many are probably going
to reject the article in any case, because if they believed
it they would be too uncomfortable.  I've heard many people
say "I can't believe that - if I did then I'd have to do
something about it, and I can't think of anything to do."

Such are the inherent defenses of the matrix.

Below, in the Press Freedom Conference announcement which you
forwarded, perhaps we are seeing the beginning of an effective 
people's media - an antidote to the matrix. 


Date: Wed, 29 Mar 2000 22:13:50 +0800
To: •••@••.•••
From: Betty Daly-King <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Re: cj#1077> Beware of humanitarians bearing gifts
Mime-Version: 1.0

Very good reference.
Betty Daly-King

Date: Sat, 01 Apr 2000 02:35:30 -0600
To: •••@••.•••, •••@••.•••
From: Mark Douglas Whitaker <•••@••.•••>
Subject: (fwd) Press Freedom Conference

Project Censored, Fordham Justice Project, Seven Stories Press, and
the Nation Institute Present

Investigative Journalism, Media Activism and Democracy

April 11 & 12, 2000 at

Fordham University Lincoln Center Campus, New York City
West 62nd Street  * Between Amsterdam and Columbus

April 11 free.
April 12 registration: $15 donation.

For more info call: 718. 817. 4998
Advance registration: http://www.projectcensored.org/pfc.htm

Project Censored in Cooperation with the Fordham Justice
Project and Seven Stories Press are pleased to announce a
conference for media activists, First Amendment advocates,
students, grassroots publishers and producers, and
writers/journalists of all persuasions. The Press Freedom
Conference will focus on building a democratic "Real News"
alternative media system in the US - a news system that
informs, increases access, builds participation, strengthens
freedom of expression. Hear from journalists and writers on
the front lines of alternative media. Find out how to link
into global alternative news sources. Discover the joys of
direct action in real news situations.

Join us in New York to explore these questions and
brainstorm how we can work together to strengthen
independent media as our best strategy for greater

TUESDAY APRIL 11: 9:00am to 5:00pm.

9:30am to 11am, LL Room 306, Lowenstein Building
    Project Censored
    Join members of Sonoma State University's Project Censored
    team discuss free speech, censorship, and how their
    year-round project monitors and evaluates the press.

Plaza Conference Room, 12noon to 2pm
    Media & Democracy Direct Actions: Building Independent Media
    Centers as Models for Alternative Media Collaboration

    The Seattle protests that shut down the WTO in November were
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    solidarity and activism. Among the most promising
    experiments that succeeded in Seattle was the creation of an
    Independent Media Center (IMC).  Eric Galatas, Seattle and
    D.C. IMC volunteer will facilitate a discussion of how
    independent media groups can work together to advance the
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2:30 to 4pm, LL313 or Law School 317
    5 Days That Shook the WTO
    Join Paper Tiger Television for hot video clips and
    discussion of their ground-breaking street coverage of the
    anti-WTO protests that shook Seattle.
        Imagination + Activism + Love = Paper Tiger


WEDNESDAY, APRIL 12: 9:00am to 5:00pm
    Presentations and discussions with media makers, activists,
    and award winning Project Censored journalists.

Session One: 9:15am-10:45am, McNally Amphitheater
    Independent Media: People, Networks & Movements
    How do we continue to create sustainable alternatives to
    corporate control of information?
         Robin Andersen, Moderator
         Natalie Byfield, Black Media Foundation
         Rachel Coen, Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting
         Eric Galatas, Free Speech Television
         Dee Dee Halleck, Deep Dish TV
         Nancy Kranich, American Library Association
         Dan Simon, Seven Stories Press

Session Two:11:00am-12:30pm, McNally Amphitheater
    Investigative Reporting: Free Speech vs.Indentured Media:
    with Project Censored Award winning journalists, Peter
    Arnett, Mark Boal,  Samuel Epstein, Sara Flounders, Arvind
    Ganesan, Ron Nixon, Ken Silverstein. Moderated by Natalie

11:00am-12:30pm, LL classroom 307
    Seattle Was Just the Beginning: Building alternative news
    networks with Independent Media Centers. IMC founders from
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    discussion with video clips from Seattle.

1:00pm-1:30pm  Lunch

1:15pm-1:45pm  McNally Amphitheater
    Key Note Address with Amy Goodman, host of Democracy Now!,
    Winner of the George Polk Award for Journalism

Session Two: 2:00pm-3:30pm
McNally Amphitheater

    Tactical Media: Confronting Power, Building Alternatives
        Angela Ards, Nation Institute
        Ellen Braune, Fenton Communications
        Mike Eisenmenger, Paper Tiger Television
        Noelle Hanrahan, Prison Radio Project
        Manse Jacobi, Free Speech TV
        Jeff Perlstein, Seattle Microradio
        Jeremy Scahill, Democracy Now!

LL classroom 406
    Independent  Media and US Foreign Policy with Project
    Censored journalists and judges, Peter Arnett,  Karl
    Grossman,  Joan Kruckewitt,  Kevin McKiernan, Bill Schaap,
    Jason Vest

Session Three: 3:45pm-5:00pm
McNally Amphitheater
    Building Independent Media on a National Scale
         David Barsamian, Alternative Radio--moderator
         Laura Flanders, Independent Journalist
         Eric Galatas, Free Speech TV
         Karen Ranucci, Latin American Video Archives
         Abbey Scher, Dollars and Sense
         Danny Schechter, Media Channel


$10 donation; $7 for students. Limited Seating.

Public Reception for CENSORED award winners sponsored by
Dollars and Sense Magazine & Seven Stories Press.

Project Censored Awards

Master of Ceremonies: Laura Flanders
Keynote Speaker: Benjamin Pogrund, author of War of Words:
Memoir of a South African Journalist

    Seth Ackerman * Robin Andersen * Peter Arnett
    David Barsamian * Mark Boal * Maria Carrión
     Bill Dixon * Samuel S. Epstein  Sara Flounders
    Arvind Ganesan  * Bruce Gagnon  * Karl Grossman
    Kevin McKiernan  * Ron Nixon * Peter Phillips
    Barbara Seaman * Jeremy Scahill * Danny Schechter * Jason Vest

Widely considered the Alternative Pulitzer Prize for
investigative journalism, the Project Censored Award is the
annual wake-up call from an institution dedicated to
advocating for and protecting First Amendment rights and
freedom of information.

Organized by Project Censored, Seven Stories Press, The
Investigative Fund of the Nation Institute, and Fordham
Justice Project. Co-Sponsored with Fairness & Accuracy in

FOR SCHEDULE UPDATES see: www.sevenstories.com

Greg Ruggiero  |  Editor |  Seven Stories Press

www.sevenstories.com  |  212. 226. 8760

Peter Phillips Ph.D.
Sociology Department/Project Censored
Sonoma State University
1801 East Cotati Ave.
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Richard K Moore
Wexford, Irleand
Citizens for a Democratic Renaissance 
email: •••@••.••• 
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