Perhaps I’ll take flack for my straight talk comments below.
Readers who follow my writing know I say what I mean and mean what I say — trying to set the record straight as best as I understand things.
This critique is about RT newscasts alone, not its other on air content I don’t follow or its website.
The latter is a valued source of news, information and analysis.
Along with Sputnik News, Press TV, its online print content, and other Iranian English language websites, RT’s site content is worlds apart from worthless rubbish US and other establishment media feature.
In September 2008, I first saw RT news in a Berkeley, CA hotel room.
I marveled at its hard-hitting, truth-telling reports on major issues, polar opposite how establishment media operate.
They feature the fabricated official narrative exclusively on issues mattering most, suppressing what’s vital for everyone to know.
Shortly after viewing RT for the first time, I was invited on to discuss a topic I don’t recall.
Remarks featured in my writing made me an RT regular for months.
Virtually like clockwork, I was invited back on air to comment on many major issues around every two weeks until blacklisted.
After occurring, I was twice invited on RT America — then disinvited, the producer explaining her invitation was overruled.
I do recall the second topic I was invited on to discuss — US aggression in Syria.
There’s nothing whatever “civil” about it as establishment media propaganda falsely claims.
Nor do RT newscasts — nor straight-talk about other US forever wars by hot and other means on nonbelligerent nations threatening no one.
I’m not alone on RT’s blacklist. Distinguished active and retired academics, as well as other notable figures I know and greatly admire, no longer show up on its newscasts.
Once in a while, a vital topic and notable guest are featured on air — the exception on RT, no longer the rule.
An example earlier was distinguished Iranian academic Mohammad Marandi.
He was invited on air to discuss the provocative harassment by Trump regime warplanes of Iranian Mahan Air Flight 1152 en route to Beirut from Tehran through an established air corridor in Syrian airspace.
Marandi explained vital information about US Middle East wars, using ISIS and likeminded jihadists as imperial foot soldiers.
I can’t recall an RT newscast host or other guests candidly providing viewers with this type information for years.
The interview with Marandi was short. He wasn’t given enough time to elaborate in more detail.
Did his candor surprise the RT host and editorial staff, not wanting what he explained aired for being too outspoken about US war on humanity?
Are prominent truth-telling guests on major issues too hot to handle for its editors?
Do RT newscasts go so far but no farther, not crossing a red line of truth-telling to avoid offending the West?
Is Marandi now blacklisted like other distinguished truth-telling guests for explaining what RT may want kept off-air on major geopolitical issues?
The US, UK, and their imperial partners are guilty of high crimes of war and against humanity against numerous countries.
Why does RT fail to feature this information on newscasts, what’s vital for everyone to know.
It’s a key way to arouse public sentiment against what’s going on endlessly, perhaps the only way to stop it.
This and other cutting-edge issues of the day get short shrift on RT newscasts too often, some largely or entirely ignored, lesser topics featured instead on air.
The same goes for invited newscast guests — mediocre ones too often, individuals with little to say worth hearing.
So-called man in the street remarks when aired are worthless.
They only reflect views of individuals asked, not public sentiment, so airing them wastes time, explaining nothing about given topics to viewers.
So-called “debates” when aired too often are unacceptable spitting matches in lieu of news, information, and analysis on vital world issues.
Days of old when RT newscasts were must viewing daily are long gone.
Most often when I watch online — RT no longer aired on cable in Chicago — I mute out much of what’s presented because of unacceptable topics and poor choice of guests in lieu of important issues discussed by notable straight-talking figures.
How far RT’s newscasts have fallen, a shadow of their long ago cutting-edge, tell it like it is truth-telling on major world issues.
There’s more about today’s RT that falls short.
Its newscasts air six days a week, Sundays devoted to news in review.
News consumers like myself want fresh reports every day. World events don’t holiday on Sundays.
On December 7, 1941, imperial Japan attacked Pearl Harbor early in the morning on Sunday.
If RT was around then, would it have waited until Monday to report what happened?
Instead of new content every day like long ago on its newscasts, it’s never on Sunday — reminiscent of the 1960 song and film title of the same name I recall seeing and can still hum the familiar melody.
I never watch other RT programs because most of my time is spent researching and writing, not watching television I dislike because there’s nothing to watch.
Nor do I watch stuff online except for Press TV and RT newscast content I don’t mute out.
I don’t follow what’s unrelated to what I do — though occasionally I watch some sports on weekends.
I crave daily truth-telling information on vital world and national issues, can’t get enough of it.
I greatly dislike RT’s newscast format, beginning a minute of so after the top of the hour, most often ending short of 30 minutes, at times way short — interrupted at the top, during, and bottom of half hour programs for commercial breaks.
That’s right, ad nauseam commercials, plugging other programs, like selling stuff on establishment TV, but devoting less time to sales pitches.
Some promotion is fine to inform viewers of other programs they may wish to follow.
RT overdoes it, what I find offensive and tune out because it’s not what I tune in for.
I also object to truncated newscasts that largely feature lesser issues over more important ones with mostly mediocre guests.
There’s one more thing. I crave straight-talk information I can absorb by listening alone, images of secondary importance to me.
Time and again during newscast reports, RT punctuates them with loud music or annoying noise and graphics — what I call concerts with lyrics and/or sound effects, raucous theatrics, diverting time from news reporting comments by hosts and guests.
I crave daily updated truth-telling news, information, and analysis sans theatrics, breaks, and distractions — throughout each newscast seven days a week, every day of the year.
What RT long ago excelled at is a distant memory. Today it falls short most often.
Maybe one day its newscasts will resemble establishment TV — featuring everything to sell, nothing to tell, state-approved propaganda and junk food news.
Why don’t RT newscasts resemble its website content, notably featuring reports on US war theaters, its high crimes against peace, and war by other means against nations it doesn’t control, including Russia?
I’ve stressed time and again that normal relations with the US are unattainable, a waste of time pursuing because hegemons don’t negotiate. They demand.
The only language both wings of the US war party understand is toughness.
The function of journalism in print and on air the way it should be is truth-telling and full disclosure on vital issues of the time.
As long as RT features lesser issues over major ones most often, its value as an on-air news and information service is marginal at best.
Until the effects of aging caught up with me, I was regular on one Sputnik Radio program, an occasional guest on another, once on a third program.
My remarks, often on issues I write about, pull no punches — why I’m never invited on US corporate TV or radio, and no longer on RT.
Twice I was pre-screened for an on-air live BBC television interview. My remarks screened me out.
Twice I was interviewed by Al Jazeera — pre-recorded. When aired, my most important comments were edited out.
When asked on again and explained I’d only go on live, I was disinvited.
Yet Sputnik News invited me back regularly, what used to be true with RT from Moscow and RT America — no longer for years.
Having been a regular RT guest long ago, blacklisting me and others I know with likeminded views is what unacceptable censorship is all about.
The same goes for largely featuring lesser topics in lieu of the day’s most important ones — especially issues related to war and peace, equity, justice and the rule of law.
Today, explaining what all things flu/covid are all about is most crucial, especially toxic mass-jabbing with mass-elimination of unwanted people and establishment of social control tyranny.
I’ve never seen anything on RT explaining what this most crucial issue is all about.
Note: If I rated media I’m familiar with by letter grades, US, other Western newscasts, and Al Jazeera would get a failing F (including the BBC, NPR and PBS), Sputnik based on programs I know an A, Press TV an A, RT a C at best.
The difference between RT and Press TV telecasts is stark. The latter’s news programs feature key cutting-edge issues of the day, no punches pulled.
The former largely ducks them, a disservice to viewers.
A Final Comment
All of the above remarks represent my unfiltered honest views. Others may disagree with them.
I welcome honest, straight-forward opinions as candidly presented as mine above and in my writing.
I hesitated writing this critique for some time because despite its flaws, RT newscasts are worlds apart from establishment media rubbish.
I did it mainly for one reason — hoping its editors spot what I wrote, give serious thought to how RT was long ago when I first discovered its refreshing approach to newscasting, and return to the format I and others valued greatly.
If things turn out this way one day, a long shot at best, I accomplished my aim.