Fake news, fake news, fake news. We hear it so much we have become desensitized to it. The phenomenon of fake news really started around the same time WikiLeaks released the DNC hacked emails. It was this time the story of #Pizzagate broke. Fake news was a response to Pizzagate. And while it did raise fundamental questions about those emails, some of the news being circulated wasn’t news at all, it was unfounded accusations presented as news.
One example was the Comet Pizza Parlor, owned by DC socialite, James Alefantis. It was alleged Mr. Alefantis ran a sex trafficking ring inside the pizza parlor, however, there was no evidence and in America that is slander. This caused Mr. Alefantis harm and in the end, threatened Alex Jones with a potential lawsuit. Jones had to apologize on air for his part in the coverage of Comet Pizza and Mr. Alefantis. The fallout from exposed fake news is unmeasurable. But what about the fake news that flies right under the radar?
Today, I will present to you a small, vague, but important example of how fake news works. First, the reality is, people, don’t read anymore. At least not in depth anyway. As people have gotten busier and with advances in technology, there has been a tremendous decline in consumption of traditional news; especially print and mainly in newspapers.
Now in one respect, this is good. This develops more voices and more voices create more news. The more sources of news, traditional or not, give people more choices. More choices, more likely you are to piece together the truth. But it also allows or encourages people to only read headlines. As I have noted before; 60% of the public only reads headlines.
Incredibly, according to two Pew Research studies, 44 percent of Americans get news from Facebook. And we all the reliability of Facebook’s filters and matrixes. Combine that with your drunk friends ranting and raving at 2 am and you only reading the headlines? It’s easy to see how one can easily build up walls of confirmation bias.
And they’re counting on just that.
Now in this article per Yahoo via Business Insider, the headline is a classic “Report suggests”. Let’s open this up and see who they cite as sources. We open it and its “anonymous law enforcement”. Disappointing, nobody on record. Then if that wasn’t enough, two sentences later they discredit the entire article per “other agents” calling the “report” a damning “almost all circumstantial” that “cannot be used to make any conclusive suppositions”. So, what we have here is a fugazi. There is nothing here. It’s just a “gotcha” headline with multiple unnamed yet, conflicting …speculative contradictions.
A piece of news like this is to intellect what Diet Coke is to your daily diet.
This creates confusion for the 40% of people who read it and for the 60% that don’t, it creates a false narrative. This isn’t journalism anymore. It’s empty propaganda and should be treated as such. If that wasn’t enough, consider the last section I highlighted (on graphic 1) and this is the link it opens to:
This article points out the most important findings that came out of five hours of testimony. It bullets three of them as you can see above in the middle. They sum up to this:
- Trump’s wiretapping claim was false
- Trump’s connection to Russia via him or his associates
- Pointing out investigation started in July 2016
First, Trump’s wiretap claim? Semantics. Secondly, Mr. Comey admitted to investigating in July 2016 making the first bullet point true by default, thus Trump’s claim would be true; he and/or his associates were under investigation. Wiretap? Maybe not tapping his phone but he was under investigation and perhaps, surveillance. Yet, here we are without any evidence… nine months later.
Now the last point and the most important of them is the investigation between Trump and Russia. Five hours of testimony and 19 mentions of the word “intelligence” in this article and not one time does the word “counter” come before “intelligence”. Weird, huh? If you read the quote on the right in red, straight from the horse’s mouth, under oath, Mr. Comey clearly calls it what it is: a Counterintelligence Investigation.
What is the significance of “Counterintelligence”? I’ll just leave it to Dan Mclaughlin of National Review to explain:
“First, it means that nobody determined that there was a basis to think a crime may have been committed — or that investigators were likely to uncover a crime — before starting an investigation. That’s not what people usually assume when they hear “FBI investigation.”
Second, it means that the investigation has no target and no standards and that there is no expectation it will have a public endpoint.”
Remember, the Director of National Intelligence under President Obama testified “NO EVIDENCE OF TRUMP-RUSSIA COLLUSION TO MY KNOWLEDGE”
And don’t just make the mistake of chalking this particular story up to one bad actor, this article via Yahoo and Business Insider mirror a similar one, on the same day, in the New York Times. As you know, this is a coordinated effort to shape a narrative. A narrative that clearly shows the corporate media is aligned against the President of the United States. The bigger questions are why and just how far they will go to achieve their objective? Only time will tell.