There are discussions all over the place about how the media has been manipulated by Russia. Now we need a war on “fake news”; some news outlets are even publishing lists of what they call fake news or propaganda sites. It must be that fake news outlets are to blame for the mainstream media failing to forecast the results of the election, because, the thinking goes, the MSM just couldn’t be wrong. Nor could they have been running questionable polls. And certainly, they couldn’t have been so in the tank for the war-pig Clinton that they just propagandized themselves into a stupor. The fact that they gave so much free airtime to Trump all along and drove people to look him up, take him as a serious contender, and attend his rallies to see for themselves what the fuss was about had absolutely no bearing on the election. Right? Am I right? Look, advertising works. That’s why companies do it. Even negative advertising works. People heard Trump’s name over and over. From the mainstream news; you are the ones who kept talking about him 24 hours a day – you fools are the ones who pushed his name front and center so repeatedly that he actually bragged he didn’t have to pay for advertising. What did you expect? Let’s take note of the fact that since the MSM, at the request of the Clinton folks, ignored Sanders until word of mouth brought him a groundswell of attention nonetheless, the opposite principle (lack of media coverage depresses name recognition) worked for a long enough time to help Clinton win the Democratic primary. Well, that and some good old-fashioned election rigging. Clinton cost the Democrats the election. The MSM helped her lose it. But now we are supposed to believe it was “fake news” sources and the Russians.
To put an end to fake news, there is a push to censor the news. To censor the news. Might I remind you that this is in the United States of America.
The Washington Post published an article this week which credits persons unknown for coming up with a list of websites and news sources that are either direct Russian propaganda sites, or that are perhaps “unconsciously being used as pawns by Russia”. Seriously – they don’t know who the people behind the “information” they are writing about are, and serenely state that the information comes from a group of “anonymous technical experts using scientific methods”. The anonymous experts have a full list of dozens of such “fake news” sites – all supposedly engaging in “false or misleading news”, most, they claim, is inspired by or coming from Russia. Some of the websites they list are very liberal sites that I read all the time, with accolades and awards for fine journalism. Some are financial websites that simply cover the economy. A couple of them are actually US government-affiliated sites, although the “experts” and the WaPo appear blissfully clueless about that fact. Breitbart, which is about as tabloid and fakey as you can get, is not on the list. Neither are FOXNews, CNN, MSNBC, etc.; clearly the coverage from these MSM sources has deteriorated over the years to where one ought to consider them promoters of falsified and misleading information, but the point of this suggested purge of “fake news” is obviously aimed at alternative news websites, most of them to the left of center in political opinion.
Stranger still is that it seems to be the Democrats who are squealing the loudest about the horrors of what is a contrived Red Scare; in fact, it was Clinton and the Democrats who started this ball rolling with continuous ominous warnings about the Russian Menace during the campaign season. It’s just pathetic to see the Democrats, once the “party of the people” and “civil rights champions”, usher in a new McCarthy era and restart the Cold War as they flail about trying to explain to themselves how their [despised] candidate could have lost the election. I can’t stress this enough: we are being pushed into very dangerous territory with these suggestions that certain news outlets or websites be black-listed (i.e., censored) based upon the rantings of some anonymous trolls. PropOrNot, the faceless group behind “The List”, actually calls for the U.S. government to use the powers of the FBI and DOJ to begin investigations of those on their List for potential violations of the Espionage Act. They claim that these websites “make propaganda for brutal authoritarian oligarchies” and “are often involved in a wide range of bad business”.
Ironically, the WaPo is using fake news to write an fake expose on fake news. And it’s largely the Democrat community that is lauding this Orwellian mess.
Let me tell you some stuff. Jeff Bezos (owner, Amazon) buys the Washington Post. Jeff Bezos signs a $500 mm contract with the CIA. Neither the CIA nor Jeff Bezos will state what this contract is for. Do you suppose you can figure it out all by yourself?
In 2013, Congress overturned a long-existing law that prohibited the government from using propaganda in US media to influence Americans. Not that they weren’t directly and openly using propaganda before that – anyone notice the “retired military officers” and “intelligence officers” who outright lied in a successful effort to sell the Iraq war? (Etc., etc.) Changing the law simply made it legal for them to do it again. Do please note that Obama, never a good friend to the freedom of the press idea (see his war on whistle-blowers, for example) signed this bill into law.
The US State Dept regularly uses propaganda to try and sway the opinion of people in foreign countries. They have a branch devoted entirely to this effort. When we do it, it is “spreading democracy”. Assuming Russia does it here, it requires a military response. (LOL – yeah, they got hundreds of agents pretending to be journalists who convince editors to run their pro-Russia stories in the media every fucking day. Sure. The CIA, meanwhile, actually and provably does have hundreds of agents pretending to be journalists, including in the US, whose stories are guaranteed to be run by editors of the MSM every fucking day.)
Voice of America. Look them up, if you don’t know what VoA is. Our tax-payer dollars used to bring correct thinking to the unswayed everywhere. Propaganda, much?
Also see this article, if you want to understand who is really running fake news:
and this 18-minute video is food for thought:
We also have a group led by Jill Stein that is trying to get the election results re-counted in three states. She thinks that the election was rigged in Trump’s favor. She claimed in one interview (but not in subsequent ones) that the election results were caused by foreign governments’ interference and hacking into our election systems. I.e., blame the Russians. This statement was also up on her website temporarily (she has since erased it, but many people noticed it before she did so). This is so stupid I can’t believe she said it. The voting machines are not hooked up to the internet. No-one can “hack in”. They can have malware installed in them at the factory or at the polling place; are we to believe that the Dread Russians sent over so many agents that they were able to install malware in the machines nationwide? The D’s and the R’s, on the other hand, do have access to all the machines right here in the US. As do the companies that provide the machines. George Soros, ever fond of interfering in the governance of foreign nations and running “color revolutions” to overthrow other countries through “internal” methods, owns the company that provides the voting machines in 16 states. Any tinkering with the machines is done right here by good old Americans.
I voted for Stein (and voted for her in ’12, as well), but almost didn’t. Want to know why I almost didn’t? This may sound petty, but here goes: She was the only residential candidate to speak out on behalf of the protesters at the Dakota pipeline. That was very good. You go, girl, and all that. She went to the DAPL protest site at Standing Rock and joined with the protesters. During her brief visit with them, she got herself arrested. She had spray-painted some graffiti on the pipeline company’s bulldozers. This pissed me off to the point where I began to think that she is just another fraud who is using anything and anyone she can to get attention. I know it’s hard for the third-party candidates to get any mention in the media, but this stunt hurt the credibility of the protesters. The tribes and the other protesters have been extremely careful to avoid anything that even hints at violence, illegal acts, or destruction. They want it obvious that they are intent on protecting the land, the water, and their rights, by peaceful means. By defacing equipment (yeah, I get it – it isn’t like she blew up a bunch of equipment with dynamite), she went directly outside the stringent guidelines and limits the protesters decided to impose on themselves as they seek to exhibit their principles and peacefully protest.
So she actually cast the protesters in a bad light – she is the only person on the protester’s side to date who has done anything destructive or illegal at Standing Rock – and she did it for a self-serving attention-getter motive. She only went there to grab a head-line for herself. It just struck me wrong, that she’d put them at risk of being labeled “rioters” or “eco-terrorists” or as destructive in any way, just so she could make the newspapers.
Maybe that makes me a purist, I don’t know. She’s gotten arrested before, protesting third-party exclusion from the debates; that didn’t bother me. I thought she had a point and was correctly directing her protest actions against the two major parties. For God’s sake, Stein was arrested and shackled overnight for protesting a debate, back in 2008; her arrest then was a disgusting example of how hard the two major parties will fight off anyone threatening their duopoly. But I am sick of the politicians using us as their pawns in their quest to control the country. And Stein herself was using the Sioux in the Standing Rock case. I found it shameful. I ended up voting for her anyway, because – well, who the hell else was there to vote for?
I find her involvement in this recount effort a bit mysterious for a third party candidate who couldn’t possibly be affected one way or the other by a recount. It is quite obvious she is trying to help Clinton with this demand. Or, cynically, just hoping to raise money to pay off her campaign debt. I sure hope everyone who contributed to the now over $5 mm she’s raised pays attention to what happens with that money.
Maybe a recount would lead to something good; perhaps we’ll finally get some
investigation into these damned voting machines, but it might also lead to a civil war. So help me, it just sounds kinda like another politician looking for money. That remark about foreign governments “messing with our elections” should raise serious questions about her motives here. How peculiar for someone who ran partly on the platform of ending all the wars and who castigated Clinton for being a neoliberal war hawk to now engage in the same propaganda about Russia that Clinton promoted all during the election season.
I had hoped that the one thing we could count on with the election of Trump, the only good thing, near as I can tell (the man is an oaf, a simpleton, a buffoon, a skell looking for a con, a billionaire who will serve billionaires and spit on the commoners) is that there would be an end to the drive for war with Russia. Obviously, I under-estimated the voracious pull of the Clinton black hole. This bullshit “war on fake news” is dangerous, dangerous shit, and that it is driven by a neoliberal/neocon propaganda push against Russia is going to lead to disaster.
America – of all the things we ever lost over recent decades, I miss our minds the most.
Zerohedge has a brief article up about the mysterious way the Jill Stein recount effort seems to have an ever-increasing need for money. The more money they raise, the more they need. How very politician-like.
Just yesterday we noted that Jill Stein was acting on behalf of Hillary Clinton to raise money for recounts in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. As we noted then, we continue to be astonished by the amount of money flowing into the fundraising campaign and would love to see which of Hillary’s mega donors have spent the most on the effort…somehow we suspect this isn’t just a “grassroots organizing” effort as Stein described it.
So, in less than 1 day, Jill Stein raised over $3mm, which is more than the $2mm needed to force a recount in Wisconsin. While she attributed the accomplishment to “the power of grassroots organizing,” we would tend to be a little more skeptical and would love to see exactly where those donations came from. Then again, maybe we’re wrong and there really are just that many disaffected snowflakes out there willing to blow their money on an extreme long shot.
But, today a new mystery has emerged in Stein’s fundraising efforts. Apparently, the more money she raises the more expensive the recount effort becomes. Courtesy of the Wayback Machine we have the following snapshots from her fundraising page over the past couple of days:
[Teri’s note: I didn’t include the screen shots to save space – they show exactly what this article says they do.]
November 24, 2016 at 3:46AM – In the beginning, Stein figured she needed a total of $2.5mm to fund her recount efforts. That figure included $2.2mm for the actual filing fees and presumably another $0.3mm for legal fees and other costs.
November 24, 2016 at 1:20PM – Then, just 12 hours later, after the cash just kept flowing in, Stein figured she needed at least another $2mm as her fundraising goal was raised to $4.5mm in total. Of course, the filing fees of $2.2mm didn’t change but the “attorney’s fees” apparently surged by about 300% and the total costs of the effort skyrocketed to $6-7mm.
November 25, 2016 at 6:11AM – Now, just this morning as Stein approaches $5mm in total donations, her overall fundraising goal has surged once again and now stands at $7mm.
So, with nearly $5mm raised so far, the question is no longer whether recounts will occur in WI, MI and PA but just how much Jill Stein will be able to drain from the pockets of disaffected Hillary supporters to fund her long-shot efforts.
All that said, here is Jill Stein admitting to CNN that she has absolutely no evidence of election hacking….even though she asks that you please keep sending your money anyway.
Jill Stein: “We don’t know” if the election was stolen, but it was a “hack-riddled election” https://t.co/yxsdKzEsVg https://t.co/7y9Obwtpyo
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) November 25, 2016
And another where she says she would have challenged the election result even if Hillary won…though somehow we suspect she wouldn’t have been able to raise quite so much money under that scenario.
Jill Stein says she would still be raising money for vote recounts, even if Clinton had won https://t.co/9ZwRiCbT9u https://t.co/xKY1au3oRj
— CNN (@CNN) November 24, 2016
Clinton surrogates now state that they are joining in the recount effort. Clinton herself is saying nothing. I’m not sure she has spoken publicly since the election; all statements from the Clinton campaign are coming from spokes-people and former campaign personnel. Trump has just made the claim, via a “tweet”, that the reason Clinton is ahead in the popular vote is because “millions of people voted illegally”. So he is also asserting voter fraud and vote rigging, as well. Of course, he’s too stupid to see that his own claim that millions voted illegally is ipso facto grounds for a recount, but you’ll never hear me accuse him of higher intelligence.
The Obama White House has issued a statement that they find the recount effort unnecessary. They feel the election was properly run and the results are beyond reproach.
I mentioned in my last post that the people of the US would not have been served well by either Clinton or Trump. We lose either way. I would like to expand on that a little here. I find it unsettling how quickly the Democratic establishment swiveled from the position that Trump is completely unfit for office to one of helpful enabling of the president-elect’s transition into office and his cabinet picks and policy decisions. I’m not sure, of course, what exactly motivated the Democrats to concede so quickly, but it is clear that the Trump administration and the Republicans in both houses are getting ready to impose the Shock Doctrine on the United States. [If you have not read Naomi Klein’s book by that title, I suggest you do so.] America has frequently used shock doctrine methods to neo-liberalize other countries into living hells of economic hardship, corporate/banking ownership of government, and privatization. Now it our turn. It is also painfully obvious that the Democrats will offer no resistance to this; in fact, they aren’t even uttering the faintest real protest or any sign that they will oppose what is coming down the pike. Does anyone remember how the Republican politicians openly sneered at Obama when he won the election in ’08 and vowed that they would work relentlessly to thwart his administration every chance they got? Trump is not facing any such push-back from the Democrats.
Perhaps the highly-placed Democrats in office didn’t want one of their own in charge as both parties collude to strip what remains of the social safety net, privatize all areas of the public sphere to financially benefit the corporatocracy, and spread further death and destruction on the world. The plans to do away with Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, public education, environmental laws, regulations on Wall Street and corporate cartels, and other such moves have been supported by both parties for a long time. What Trump and the Republicans have planned for us, and they will be aided substantially through “bipartisan efforts” from the Democrats, will be the final end to any pretense about whom both parties serve. Trump himself is a form of Shock Doctrine on the country. His very election helps pave the way for what is coming. It will be shocks, austerity, destruction, increased poverty, militant (not to be confused with military, although that may happen along the way) rule. I’m not sure he understands that he is being used by both parties this way. In fact, he probably thinks he is somehow the “big winner” here. He is particularly obtuse and childish for a mogul. Shit, he isn’t even going to security briefings. He’s sending Mike Pence to get the inside scoop; there should be no doubt that Trump has his Cheney, and that’s who will be running things. God help us.
In the meantime, Obama hasn’t yet left office. He is not doing anything to preserve whatever faint populist part of “his legacy” actually exists, or making any attempt to offer protection for the American people against the bare thuggery of the incoming Trump-ettes through whatever quick executive or legislative actions he could finagle before he heads into fabulously wealthy guest-speaker-land. No, he is pummeling Congress to give him a “must-pass” increase in military spending, handing his illegal drone program and kill list on to Trump, and expanding the reach of our clandestine military forces around the planet.
This is Obama’s true legacy:
The Obama administration is giving the elite Joint Special Operations Command — the organization that helped kill Osama bin Laden in a 2011 raid by Navy SEALs — expanded power to track, plan and potentially launch attacks on terrorist cells around the globe, a move driven by concerns of a dispersed terrorist threat as Islamic State militants are driven from strongholds in Iraq and Syria, U.S. officials said.
(source: Washington Post)
The most chilling paragraph from this article reads:
The new JSOC task force could also offer intelligence, strike recommendations and advice to the militaries and security forces of traditional Western allies, or conduct joint operations, officials said. In other parts of the world, with weak or no governments, JSOC could act unilaterally.
The article comes from the WaPo, so you are allowed to read it in its entirety. The WaPo is not on The List of “fake news outlets that ought to be censored”, naturally, since the WaPo itself conveniently provided us with The List.