Common Dreams? Or is it censorship in common with the corporate media?

Ira ChernusThe biggest liberal website out there online, Common Dreams, informs us with its headline today that ‘OBAMA’S PROGRESSIVES: HOLDING, PUSHING, TUGGING’. Common Dreams has become a major resource for the US Left and liberal community in the last couple of years through its posting of many important commentaries by Leftists and liberals plus its convenient links that many of us use quite often. Unfortunately there is a big weakness of the site, and that is their censorship of commentaries, writers, and readers who are not completely 100% on board with their ‘support the lesser of two evils’, pro-Democratic Party point of view.

As a result, when I go to read their headline, I today get the message that THE WEBSITE DECLINED TO SHOW THIS WEBPAGE (to me) HTTP 403 FORBIDDEN. What is Common Dreams scared of from me?

The exact post I made to one of their commentaries that got me blacklisted from their site was made on election night and was linked the following day to a commentary at Common Dreams, from the one I made here on Not My Tribe titled Sadly, Barack Obama will probably get us OUT of Iraq by getting us INTO Iran. Many people who read Common Dreams material link to other commentaries that back up their opinions and beliefs, and I merely did the same.

But this belief that Obama’s election will lead to yet more war ran counter to their cheeleading for the Democratic Party, and earned me their shunning. And you know what? I still think it is most probable that attacking Iran is a most possible final result, post national arrival of Obama into the White House. How will the Common Dreams’ censor feel if this actually happens? Will he/ she remember the decision to put me permanentl offline from their site, for simply making this observation? Probably not.

I certainly do not feel all alone at all in being treated so shabbily by the Common Dreams Democratic Party cheerleading censor on their site. The site shuns many others, too, including the Libertarian site ANTIWAR.COM that it has never chosen to link to and acts as if the site does not exist. ANTIWAR.COM, you see, is a major resource for those who oppose what they call one of the War Parties, the Democrats? Can’t do that per play book of Common Dreams censorship. Not at all if you want publication there.

Also of note, is that Common Dreams likes anarchists somewhat, linking to the giant academician anarchist site, Znet, but has no links to overt Marxist links. Major antiwar activists (and presidential candidates) like Gloria La Riva will never see any comment of theirs allowed the Common Dreams site. CENSORED by the CD group-ling of ‘OBAMA’S PROGRESSIVES:HOLDING, PUSHING, TUGGING’. More like BLOCKING, I would say, and Common Dreams doesn’t like people that are aware of that, and will comment to that effect on their pro-Democratic Party site.

I could list many people whose comments will never appear at Common Dreams, merely because they are activist Marxists. Many academic anarchists act at election time though as Social Democrats, and Social Democrats can be easily herded into voting Democratic Party in the US. ALLOWED.

The thing about Common Dreams is that they are not real honest, and pretend often to have no bias for the Democrat Party even as they push them with countless articles praising people like Al Gore and Jimmy Carter, et al. With the final days to push to get Barack Obama elected though, they seem to have dropped much of their camouflage and subterfuge and the long time effects will be to make their site less attractive to people who actually do want uncensored Left opinion, and not just cheerleading for the new DP executives in power. The CD approach to activism is to try to herd all ‘Progressives’ into voting the Democratic Party. It really is about that plain and simple, but it would be much better for activism if this major Left resource in the US had a less sectarian and less Democratic Party partisan approach.

So to the question is it Common Dreams, or is it censorship in common with the corporate media? I leave you to contemplate that question? For me, I just know that I can no longer read the site on my home computer, let alone comment on their posted articles, all because I do not share their ‘common dream’, which seems narrowly limited to getting the Democratic Party politicians into office, and propagandizing for them. That’s why I see them as being so like the corporate media itself, which will only endorse one of the two corporate parties, and will censor those who want a different world.

As to those whose commentaries are promoted by Common Dreams? I will be writing to at least one of them, Ira Chernus who lives here in Colorado, and asking him what it feels like to have article after article of his promoting the idea of voting Democratic Party this last election published on the Common Dreams site, and then finding out how Common Dreams has censors who keep opposing ideas to his own offline at their Common Dreams site? I don’t think that Ira, or many of the other nice liberal Democratic Party voting writers, have given this censorship much thought. It reflects poorly on them though, when Common Dreams publishes their commentaries and then keeps ‘Progressives’ from actually being able to challenge their POV. Ira, that is censorship. Have you anything much to say about this?

PS.. That picture above is of Ira Chernus, whose multiple articles framed the Common Dreams site the last weeks of the election. He is a professor who happens to live in The Democratic Party Peoples Republic of Boulder.

124 thoughts on “Common Dreams? Or is it censorship in common with the corporate media?

  1. Global News (Zionist owned/backed) in Canada took a similar tactic to silence dissent beyond “acceptable” limits. Global eventually went to the Microsoft/Facebook route after dropping Disqus for BS “privacy concerns”. If you look at the Global comments today there is virtually zero substance, but you regularly can “learn how to make money on the internet”. So CD may be careful what it wishes for, once all that is available is mainstream lies or “acceptable dissent”, people stop looking. Their “supporters” will see “mission accomplished” and ramp down the $$ supply but not relinquish control.

    As to the exact trigger for CD deciding to shut down comments, could it be the total inability to justify the Mainstream/”progressive” media action contrast between the US-gov’t “doubts” about the expert evidence showing the bogus claims of N Korea’s involvement in the Sony-hack, with Obama still levying sanctions for no reason. Then compare to MH17 and Crimea/”annexation” lies being perpetuated to this day.

    Obviously enough people were being convinced the US gov’t is openly lying at every turn, that it really IS all about derailing the BRICS+ via a war with Russia by any means.

  2. Yunzer, you whine about getting banned yet you also donate to them and find ways to kiss Siouxrose’s ass to get back into her good books. Maybe you should shut up and take responsibility for perpetuating the problem. Why should Brownie give a damn about all you whiners when he knows that you’ll donate anyway?

  3. Nothing has changed at CD. Bannings and other pervasive censoring actions continued right up until the temporary suspension of commenting.

    CD has already announced it will soon deploy a commenting system giving it the COMPLETE censoring control over comments and commenters that Disqus did not give it.

    The temporary suspension of commenting was occasioned by the increasing exposure (by commenters and banned commenters on Disqus-using sites) of wealthy gate-keeper funding of CD, CD fundraising misrepresentations, CD censoring, and the infamous and years-long CD-SR quid pro quo.

    CD is especially keen to conceal the money trail that goes from Rockefeller and Schumman (IBM and GM heirs) to Moyers, McKibben, The Nation and CD, and secondarily the money trail to CD from wealthy capitalists with AIPAC and Dem establishment agendas.

    *(I am here, like Anonymous, responding to Yunzer’s Jan 4 comment above: For Yunzer to suggest CD was being “egalitarian” and had been “changing a little in response to commenter pressure” — while aware that CD was pervasively banning and censoring commenters to eliminate their pressure — is worse than naive. Further, Yunzer has been commenting on CD in support of CD pretexts for censoring, as for example its pretext for prohibiting links in comments, and to curry favor with CD and SR. Caveat Emptor.)

  4. Global News in Canada (owned and strongly influenced by by Israel-friendly and Tea Party-connected Conservative Party backers) did EXACTLY the same, first shutting down comments, then going to a “more secure” commenting system, essentially forcing posters to reveal their identities (via IP tracking) to the Global News IT staff.

    Both at CD and Global, “censoring” was mostly against the most overtly aggressive “anti-Zionist” posters. Those of us with older gmail-type accounts that Discus kept anonymous, and who figured out how to sidestep the “Zionist” moderation target bait and focus on the Bretton Woods-centric-0.01% confounded them for quite a time, to the point where they had no choice but to shut down comment.

    That virtually ZERO coverage of BRICS+/Shanghai Cooperation Organization information makes it to the MSM or even “progressive” sites blatantly shows what the US/NATO/Bretton Woods-centric 0.01% do not want the US/NATO public aware of.

    So now only fully independent sites carry any BRICS+ vs. Bretton Woods information. But notice BRICS+ info is not couched as the driving impetus behind the US/NATO vs. Russia economic/regional-war confrontations. The oligarchs/plutocrats on the BRICS+ side don’t want too much public exposure either.

    The ONLY benefit I see to the BRICS+ over Bretton Woods is that no one country or group of 0.01%ers can dominate a multi-currency system. Not ideal, as the 0.01%/1% can still collectively wag the dog, but at least it can’t be a 0.001% doing so.

  5. Finally I found some former co-commenters from CD. When I realized after some absence from the site due to having been out of country, that it had no more comment section due to phony reasons, I checked the Disqus site to find the last posts made by me and the last responses to posts made by me. One of my comments about the CD hipocrisy in regards to the Ukraine desaster had been ‘removed’. It was then that it dawned upon me that CD is nothing but a DEM/REP outlet – not unsimilar to NPR with a huge bias against any critical thinker that had looked through the deceit that is perpetrated globally. It is now a pandemic of epic proportions – the total bias towards what can only be called a Fascist takeover. The hypocrisy of being okay with Islam defaming publications/comments, but now even creating laws against factual correct publications/comments in regards to the behavior of the tiny fanatically ethno-religious island in an Arabian ocean is much more than Orwellian. The Interceptor has an excellent piece on that:

    The 21st Century has made it painfully clear that Orwell saw it coming. Everything people are told is the opposite of what is actually happening. Thus, Common Dreams is an Uncommon Nightmare – supported by those powers who have an interest in the perpetuation of the sick status quo.

  6. Some have migrated to Truth-out dot org, and other Disqus-powered sites but CD had the biggest readership.

    The CD/HuffPo/Global News type moves are symptoms of the wider 0.01% agenda to control the media. As soon as posters start talking rationally about “permissible dissent”, the illusion of “progressive” media is dispelled and the comments must go, or be so drowned in noise as to be unintelligible to the average reader.

    This is why vineyard of the saker and ClubOrlov get 10’s of thousands of hits per day. Even if you don’t agree with all that is posted, it is honest.

  7. How come no one has posted since Common Dreams changed their commenting system back in Feb 2015? They couldn’t have been that sudden to ending their censorship practices after nearly 8 years of doing it.

  8. As of today, Common Dreams is begging for another 50k semi-yearly donation and here is their status:


    We Interrupt This Article with an Urgent Message!

    Common Dreams is a not-for-profit news service. All of our content is free to you – no subscriptions; no ads. We are funded by donations from our readers. This media model only works if enough readers pitch in. We have millions of readers every month and, it seems, too many take our survival for granted. It isn’t. Our critical Mid-Year fundraiser is going very slow – only 503 readers have contributed a total of $19,000 so far. We must raise $31,000 more before we can end this fundraising campaign and get back to focusing on what we do best.
    If you support Common Dreams and you want us to survive, we need you.
    Please make a tax-deductible gift to our Mid-Year Fundraiser now!

    Donate Now!


    Here’s the snapshot taken:

    So you must be wondering how Craig Brown and his minions will get $31,000 in 16 days, right? You must be also wondering how 503 people could donate $19,000 averaging $37.77 per person, right? The truth is that there are only a handful of contributions and most of them are coming from wealthy donors. As it always happens every year for the last 8 years, the remaining money will come from shady sources. It’s not like Common Dreams will give an honest break down on who actually contributed how much money. Some regulars on Common Dreams such Susan Rosenberg (aka Siouxrose and Siouxrose11), Thomas_Jefferson, Ctrl-Z, and Yunzer are almost dead giveaway big money donars while other regulars such as theinitiate, beija_flor, and GWNorth aka SuspiraDeProfundis to name a few who self-censor themselves will display tell-tale signs of knowingly defend Craig Brown’s censorship and are likely to be big money donors as well. I used to be on Common Dreams until 2009. I was never banned but I saw too many users getting banned for no reason and felt that I might not be too far. I read the articles and comments every once in a while but nothing changes. Common Dreams, Huffington Post, Global News, AlterNet, Raw Story, Mother Jones, etc… only exist to make money via web traffic and shady “donations” and the last thing any of them want to see is a progressive transformation of this nation. In a progressively just world, Craig Brown and Arianna Huffington would either be behind bars or finding themselves seeking real work to do rather than relying on big money donors to give them six figure salaries without any effort. Censorship is still going on at Common Dreams but it’s not as noticeable under discourse as it was under disqus.

    With discourse, the moderator(s) can tailor their censorship and they can read “private messages” on their site.

    Now have a look at CD’s commenting policy and compare that to the template:

    In the end, Craig Brown will dictate his usual double standards.

  9. Update:


    We Interrupt This Article with an Urgent Message!

    Common Dreams is a not-for-profit news service. All of our content is free to you – no subscriptions; no ads. We are funded by donations from our readers. This media model only works if enough readers pitch in. We have millions of readers every month and, it seems, too many take our survival for granted. It isn’t. Our critical Mid-Year fundraiser is going very slow – only 561 readers have contributed a total of $21,000 so far. We must raise $29,000 more before we can end this fundraising campaign and get back to focusing on what we do best.
    If you support Common Dreams and you want us to survive, we need you.
    Please make a tax-deductible gift to our Mid-Year Fundraiser now!

    $2000 from 58 readers in less than a day? Even if was over a few days, it couldn’t have been that fast. Yep, more shady fundraising practices going on at Common Dreams. Regardless, Greg H’s list that Craig Brown and Common Dreams later hid from their site remains the bigger concern.

  10. Update:


    We Interrupt This Article with an Urgent Message!

    Common Dreams is a not-for-profit news service. All of our content is free to you – no subscriptions; no ads. We are funded by donations from our readers. This media model only works if enough readers pitch in. We have millions of readers every month and, it seems, too many take our survival for granted. It isn’t. Our critical Mid-Year fundraiser is going very slow – only 598 readers have contributed a total of $23,000 so far. We must raise $27,000 more before we can end this fundraising campaign and get back to focusing on what we do best.
    If you support Common Dreams and you want us to survive, we need you.
    Please make a tax-deductible gift to our Mid-Year Fundraiser now!


    I couldn’t edit my earlier posts to add this information so I’ll collect the updates everyday and provide the snapshot links once they’re done. $2000 from 37 people in less than a day. Damn, this keeps getting better. Talk about shady fundraising practices from Craig Brown and his minions over at Common Dreams !

  11. Yes, CD absolutely censors. I experienced that last night when my recent comments were all deleted, as was my account. What was my grave sin? I simply pointed out the hypocrisy that during the primary season, CD appealed to readers for $$$, contending that they were losing donors (wealthy pro-Hillary types) by posting pro-Bernie articles. And now, every day or two there seems to be another pro-Hillary article, arguing we must hold our noses and vote Democrat. Rather than giving ample coverage to Jill Stein and the Green Party. For a “progressive” website this seemed rather odd. Below is the email I wrote to them (and posted on the comments section of an article). There was no response, the comment and my account were simply deleted. I have had far more heated discussions on that site over various issues, but apparently calling BS on BS is not acceptable.

    Hello Common Dreams,

    Please explain why my account and certain comments were deleted last night at some point. If you are just going to link the conduct rules for the site, don’t bother.

    Peace_Czar is the handle.

    Recently I donated $50 to your site when you were fundraising and lamenting how Hillary donors wouldn’t support your site for being pro-Bernie. Now you post pseudo-apologetic articles every day for why people should vote for Hillary, with minimal articles about Jill Stein. I called you out for this double standard, not surprisingly that comment was deleted, as was my account. I have seen far worse on this site and those comments still stand.

    Apparently you don’t like people being openly critical of such hypocrisy. I’d appreciate a human response.

  12. Jill not Hill.

    Mayhaps the doctrine of two and ONLY two parties is deeply ingrained, like “you can vote for Our Candidate or you can vote for Our OTHER Candidate” to the point that nobody remembers their 7th or 8th grade history lessons that Abraham Lincoln was a third party candidate.

    Un bete noir. Sort of a re-run of 2000 when the Supreme Court voted along party lines and chose our president. And to be fair, that outcome was enabled simply because the race was so close. Gore got more, but not very much more. Beat Clinton AND Trump.

    With baseball bats …

  13. Just to make things clear, “Serious Professor’s” totally unfounded accusations regarding me being some kind of rich benefactor to Common Dreams is nonsense. On average, I’ve sent them $50 pr year.

    What is it about the internet that encourages ordinary humans to blithely level scurrilous accusations to even would-be allies?

    BTW, where have all the the comments to this article going back to 2008 gone? Gotta love the internet age and the way history gets obliterated in ways that would have been impossible in the days of printed paper.

  14. Well, here’s an example, from the first comment
    ” Global eventually went to the Microsoft/Facebook route after dropping Disqus for BS “privacy concerns”. If you look at the Global comments today there is virtually zero substance, but you regularly can “learn how to make money on the internet”. /quote.

    By the way, Facebook is intrinsic to the New Google. At least now.

    Anyhoo, to the best of my knowledge, we don’t have any kind of automated spam-away magic dust. So either Eric or myself has to shovel a lot of crap off the comments pages simply because some Bot (apparently) found its nefarious way into generating spam and putting it into older posts’ comment space which is why, now, if you want to make a screenshot on your puter before the daily cleanup such as

    Comment from Rodolfo | Edit comment (IP:
    Time: September 17, 2016, 6:55 am

    If you are interested in topic: earn online without investment in malaysia market – you should read about Bucksflooder first”

    Notice it has a spoofed IP number. Notice the similar theme of “make money on the internet without having to do anything, just use our spam app to attack other people’s websites, oh, that’s right, me has forgotted, WE are the ones who have the bot”.

    I disarmed the bot. There were over 300 comments mostly on the theme of “make money on the internet without doing anything at all to earn any of it”.

    At the same time this post was authored we underwent a flood of pro-Israel “comments” coming from the same server and apparently a Spam Gun run by Likud. There was a lot of it. Thousands. “People” who each would post a comment with a word count in the high 900 range. In a matter of seconds. Not even a minute. Which was a foolish waste time, at least in the opinion, repeated constantly, because they were directed to a “silly and irrelevant web log like Not My Tribe”.

    So, do we have a censoring mechanism on this site. Notice it’s not a question. Why is it not a question.

    Well, this site is maintained mostly with a little bit of good old fashioned diligence. Yep.

  15. meaning, we have to actually read the comments and decide if it’s a real person. There’s lots of clues. Oh the horror! actually reading somebody else’s Opinion!

    Hey, some of them are pretty damned stupid in an entertaining way.

    Especially ones who come around with a very condescending point of view. My cats are trying to help me type. I’ll be back.

  16. It is a little disheartening to one day be banned from a political site that you have actively participated in for years. I left Common dreams after they disallowed disqus then came back only to be banned right after the primaries for no apparent reason and with no notice. My crime, I guess? Supporting Dr. Jill Stein and I was never disrespectful even after being hammered hard from CTR shills. I tried to keep my commentary always thoughtful and without agenda. To say that we have free speech is a joke at You certainly are free to voice your opinion as long as it is in line with them and their big donors, otherwise do not bother. I found it utterly disgraceful that they used Julian Assange so much to try and generate donations but when he exposed corruption on their home team they all but abandoned him.There once were great and informed commenters that gave you a wide and educated view of issues on this site. You were then left to make informed decisions about those different issues. I guess they would prefer to shove one viewpoint down all readers throats and I certainly wish them good luck with that. How’s that workin’ for you now?

  17. Yeah. It might just be a case of Going Mainstream. Not something I anticipate for my self. How did Stein fare in the polls? All the news outlets only want to focus on Hillary and Donald having an almost even split of the popular vote. I voted for Jill.

    One neat thing that neither of the Big Two want to discuss is that large chunk of votes on either side which were just voting Against the other sides policy or personality instead of voting For. The clothespin vote.

    As in, put one on your nose before entering the polls. I’m getting ready for the commentary From On High that those who voted independently are “the ones who got Trump elected”.

    The 70% +/- who were not on board with either policy had a lot to do with that. More importantly the Duopoly putting Those Two up as the only ones we were de-facto allowed to elect. Maybe if there was a slight chance of democracy in the republic it wouldn’t be like that.

    More than 300 million people in America and those were the only two they could find?

  18. I too am censored from Common Dreams and all my posts have been deleted. What was my crime? Last month – Oct 2016, Common Dreams kept banning posters and hiding non-offensive posts that were simply not pro Hillary.

    I asked why the posts were hidden and was informed about the bannings. When I came back from lunch, I too was banned. That was it, asking why about hidden posts. I suspect they looked further and saw my “Stein 2016 I’m with her,” tags.

    I am very sorry I donated to that site – several times.

    All of the people who were banned appear to have been for not supporting Hillary. That place is all about shutting up free speech and promoting the corporate democratic party.

  19. What if anything has the ‘democratic’ party done to get some real reckoning on the standoff at Standing Rock? Jill Stein actually went there. Mr Obama has over-ride powers as Commander in Chief, especially in interstate and other Federal issues. Like Indian Treaties ratified by Congress which have the full weight of the Constitution in all court actions (like ordering the National Guard or State or Local police to attack citizens)

    It’s shit like this which led me to vote against both Trump and Hillary.
    If the recount swings the election to Hillary then we don’t lose anything but we don’t gain anything either. That’s the way it is.

    I used to think, a long long time ago, that ‘mercans would stand for freedom and so forth. It was a childish belief which got punctured before I hit puberty. Rapid fire truth bullets blew large holes in the dream. Nixon resigned after Agnew was replaced by Ford, and all the parties involved were criminals. Ford pardoned the guy who gave him the job even though Dick wasn’t yet indicted, then CLAIMED there was no deal. The lies, dude, the lies (that’s a parody of an acid joke “the colors, man, the colors!”)

    The best and most significant part of the whole deal is that Americans have finally gotten an assfull of Top Down Representative Democracy and the two major proponents have each more than half the people in America pissed off at him/her.

  20. Regarding you “never Hillary” types – maybe you got banned over your savage uncivil attacks against those like me who tried to explain on Commondreams that Trump was not like McCain, or Romney, or even GW Bush – his election absolutely had to be prevented through strategic voting in rust belt states like mine (Pennsylvania). These are totally different times. The way the “left” is incapable of changing their thinking with the times would be absolutely hilarious if it wer not so tragic.

    Thank-you clueless crytp-Trumpist, Assad and Putin loving “leftists” for delivering my country to the fascist oligarchs.

  21. It’s fascism in the classic definition, true… but it would be with a Hillary presidency. Because one group owns both of the parties which were permitted by the Electoral College scam. And this article was written 9 YEARS ago. Obama hadn’t taken office yet.

  22. Biy were you wrong! Common dreams is far fringe lefty and they are not party loyal at all. they pish nutjobs all the time.

  23. Hi, Linda! Good to see somebody learned to pile up insulting terms and believe (s)he has won a victory. Too bad your savior Trump is more aligned with the Nazis and other Antichrist orgasms. You know the ones, they get all kinds of excited when they see people being beaten by cop and other totalitarian scum.

    I’d call it a hollow victory but some people wouldn’t understand it so I won’t.

  24. Oddly enough the same day I was going to make a contribution I discovered commenting was to be no more. I assume that means everyone, but I wouldn’t know if I was singled out or not.
    The day before I had insisted that a person that kept insisting Biden hadn’t done ANYTHING so far, stop lying about that.
    Perhaps that was too much to handle.
    I thought CD was about silencing average democrats, in favor of the progressive point of view, not what is claimed here, that dems are being favored.

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