The Pardu

The Pardu
Watchful eyes and ears feed the brain, thus nourishing the brain cells.
Showing posts with label Lies. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Lies. Show all posts

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Lies, Opinion News, And A Rebellious Media

You gonna win so much you may even get tired of winning! (Video)

Do you recall the days of old and the carnival barker who lured you into his tent and your eventual leaving the tent thinking..."Now, why did I pay to go in to see the fake crap?"  

(A few seconds of viewing makes the point)

Do you recall the barker was never around to field your angst about wasting your money?

Donald Trump is a pathological and consummate liar. As is always the case people with such psychological deficiencies need layers and layers of facilitators an expected reality. Trump's ascension to an election win was historic in many ways, the most astounding of which was media facilitation for a person lies to the level of Trump. Consider a brief review of Politifact and Trump's "all False" statements. 

What you just read or observed is poignant, tragic and pitiful, and very much unfitting for a US President (and not in any way personally admirable.)  Trump's predecessor left the White House with a virtual 60 percent approval rating. How did he feel about Trump's veracity? 

Obama on Trump the carnival barker

Former Democrat Party presdiental candidate Martin O'Malley

You might say well those guys are Democrats; of course, they would speak as such. Well, there is a noted progressive former journalist who also feels the nation's 45th Present is a serious problem if we want honesty in the White House.
CNN's Brian Steltar also joined in via addressing Trump's utter lack of grasp on reality (via  his "worthless" words).
What happens to a country when a leader’s words are worthless when their promises are toothless or utterly useless? Is that where we now with President Trump?

Yet, we really we really should ask ourselves:  "Is there a surprise, here?

Trump has been proven as a carnival barking liar and manipulator well before he declared a run for the GOP 2016 ticket. Could network show hosts and credible journalist now suffer form of dissonance for not fighting assign Trump as did over half the nation. CNN certainly soft-balled Trump from June of 2015 forward to just before the fall elections. Half of MSNBC's hosts and reporters avoided direct challenges to Trump. Moreover, MSNBC's morning show hosts went well beyond softballing Trump while often appearing to wiffle ball the reality show bloviator.

While we will not expend any serious tie addressing the Fox News role in US Trumpism, one noted evening show demagogue recently caught a direct comment or two from another old school and credible Tv journalist. 

DBC Sunday Morning, Ted Koppel
Words as weapons against US Citizens (voters et al). 

Alas, words from US conservatives.
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Sunday, February 19, 2017

Sunday Trumpism: Rallies, Surveys And Lies

Presidents don't hold rallies; dictators do.


Before we move into the piece, we offer a reminder of the Trump "Lie of the Day."  This episode reaches as far away as Sweden. Click the image below for navigation to Occupy Democrats.

A few days ago he a major current events rarity took place. Fox News's Shepard Smith used eight full minutes of Fox News air-time to contest, refute and expose Trump as the manipulative maniac without. Click the image below


"Mainstream Media Accountability Survey"
Would you believe Trump and his team have rehashed and emailed a "media" survey to supporters?  Please read the last sentence once again: "......emailed a "media" survey to supporters." How does that sentence (or the survey promulgation) differ in any way from surveying 6 year old children the night before Christmas regarding their belief in Santa Clause?  

The survey is linked here.

Do you get the drift? A survey disseminated via email, to supporters (assuming also all conservative, with full opportunity to complete the survey as much as the person wishes. What followis is as non-scientific a survey tool as any high school socials since of civics student could create.

A few points beyond the potential survey respondent group (Trump supporters). The survey tool has an obvious leading construction. When posing certain question notice how Fox News was placed as the first potential response. The questions are also construct such that a three year old could easily discern the desire response. Moreover, the tool provides the perfect future solicitation archive. It requests your email address and once done the respondent is forced navigated to a donation page. A bit more about the email address.  The survey offers no valid way to verify the requested email address and there aren't any of the more common email survey verification tools.  

If you have read about the survey to this point, certainly you should take advantage of an NPR piece regarding the revealing offer to manipulate and alter minds. 


Sunday, August 28, 2016

And They Say Hillary Cannot Be Trusted?

Why the Lord of the Lies?  Despite the fact Hillary Clinton is (always) referred to as "they don't trust her, Trump is a far greater liar. In fact, the rational personal can assume the first utterance for trump will always be a lie, misinformation, or an exaggeration. 

Truth-o-meter 2016 Fact-checking-2016-Clinton-Trump

Bill Moyers dot com published a piece this past spring that pretty well sums-up Trump.

"This post was first published on" Staff.

Why Trump Can Lie and No One Seems to Care

The GOP candidate gets away with outrageous, contradictory statements because the mainstream media and the public let him.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump gives a speech during a rally at the The Northwest Washington Fair and Event Center on May 7, 2016, in Lynden, Washington. (Photo by Matt Mills McKnight/Getty Images)

Donald Trump is a serial liar. Okay, to be a bit less Trumpian about it, he has trouble with the truth. If you look at Politifact, the Pulitzer Prize-winning site that examines candidates’ pronouncements for accuracy, 76 percent of Trump’s statements are rated either “mostly false,” “false,” or “pants on fire,” which is to say off-the-charts false. By comparison, Hillary Clinton’s total is 29 percent.
But if Trump doesn’t cotton much to the truth, he doesn’t seem to cotton much to his own ideas, either. He waffles, flip-flops and obfuscates, sometimes changing positions from one press appearance to the next, as Peter Alexander reported on NBC Nightly News this past Monday — a rare television news critique of Trump.
I say “rare” because most of the time, as Glenn Kessler noted in The Washington Post this week, MSM — the mainstream media —  just sit back and let Trump unleash his whoppers without any pushback, even as they criticize his manners and attitude.
In an ordinary political season, perhaps Trump would be under fire for his habitual untruths, like the one that Ted Cruz’s father might have been involved with Lee Harvey Oswald. This time around, though, neither the media nor the public — least of all his supporters — seem to care. Which leads to the inescapable conclusion that these days, as far as our political discourse goes, truth, logic, reason and consistency don’t seem to count for very much.
The question is why.
One simple explanation is that Trump has changed the rules. He is not a politician but a provocateur, and he isn’t held to the same standards as Clinton or Bernie Sanders or even Cruz, all of whom actually have policies. For Trump, policies are beside the point.
… Truth, logic, reason and consistency don’t seem to count for very much. The question is why.
Another explanation is that long before Trump, social scientists observed that truth matters less to people than reinforcement, and that most of us have the ability to reformulate misstatements into truth so long as they conform to our own biases. We believe what we believe, and we are not changing even in the face of opposing facts (without this capacity for self-deception there would be no Fox News).
There is, however, another and even more terrifying explanation as to why the truth doesn’t seem to matter. It has less to do with Trump or our own proclivities to reshape reality than it has to do with infotainment — with the idea that a lot of information isn’t primarily about education or elevation, where truth matters, but entertainment, where it doesn’t. You might call it “the Winchell Effect.”
US news commentator, drama critic and gossip columnist Walter Winchell (1897 - 1972), making a radio broadcast.  (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
US news commentator, drama critic and gossip columnist Walter Winchell (1897 – 1972), making a radio broadcast. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
Walter Winchell, about whom I wrote a 1994 biography, was a hugely popular New York-based gossip columnist for the Hearst newspaper chain and an equally popular radio personality, although saying that is a little like saying that Michael Jordan was a basketball player. Winchell was thegossip columnist, with an estimated daily audience of 50 million. He practically invented the form, and the form was a long chain of snippets — rumor, prediction, innuendo — racing down the page, separated by ellipses.
Some of these snippets were scarcely more than a noun, a verb and an object: Mr. So-and-so is “that way” about Miss So-and-so. Does her husband know? In this way, Winchell became not only the minimalist master of gossip but also, quite possibly, the first tweeter – before Twitter.
If you are wondering how this is relevant to the 2016 campaign, in time Winchell turned his roving eye from entertainment to politics, deploying exactly the same arsenal to the latter as he had to the former. Thus did gossip leap the tracks from Hollywood and Broadway to Washington. In this, Winchell’s approach was a precursor of modern election coverage. He was obsessed with letting readers in on what was going to happen — the clairvoyance of rumor — rather than with what was happening or what it actually meant. That is, he was a horse-race handicapper long before horse-race coverage became the dominant form of political journalism.
One prominent example: At the behest of the White House, Winchell spent months floating trial balloons for Franklin D. Roosevelt and his ambitions for a third term. Basically, it was presidentially endorsed gossip.
But Winchell’s influence didn’t stop at conflating entertainment with politics — and this is where the indifference to truth comes in. Winchell reported dozens of tidbits of gossip each day. Presumably, that’s why people read him or listened to him on the radio; they wanted to be ahead of the curve. But the vast majority of these tidbits were unverifiable, and nearly half of the flashes that were verifiable turned out to be false, according to a survey conducted for a six-part New Yorker profile of Winchell by St. Clair McKelway. Since there was always a passel of new scoops every day, no one seemed to notice — or care — that he was usually wrong.
One can only assume this was because readers seemed to relish the excitement of the “news” more than they desired its accuracy. Or, to put it another way, gossip was entertainment, not information. Thus the Winchell Effect.
The Winchell Effect is alive and well in today’s politics in two respects. First, candidates can get away with saying pretty much anything they want without being held accountable so long as what they say is entertaining and so long as they keep the comments coming. Trump has been the major beneficiary of this disinclination by the MSM to examine statements. The blast of his utterances always supersedes their substance. And the MSM plays along.
To wit: Trump announced his tax plan way back in September 2015. With kudos to the Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post, which did look at his plan, it is just this week that most of the MSM are getting around to examining it — even as he changes it. (I may have missed it, but I still have yet to see a single story delving into Trump’s tax policies on the network news.)
The blast of his utterances always supersedes their substance. And the MSM plays along.
Perhaps better late than never, but the fact that he could throw out wild schemes involving trillions of dollars without the media feeling the need to vet them means that primary voters had no way to understand his tax plan and see its flaws. Of course, from the MSM’s perspective, analyzing a plan would be tackling policy, not providing entertainment. And make no mistake, the candidate and the mainstream media are in the entertainment business.
And that is the second way in which the Winchell Effect changes our politics. If candidates are not accountable, neither are the political media. Like Winchell, they are not only besotted with strategies, polls, predictions, and — in the case of a few cable networks — wild, unverifiable charges, they are, like Winchell, seldom challenged when they get it all wrong.
They were wrong about Trump not being a serious candidate. They were wrong about Jeb Bush’s and Marco Rubio’s chances to get the nomination. They were wrong about the likelihood of a contested GOP convention. Since they won’t call one another out, no one calls them out. In effect, they are implicated in the Winchell Effect as much as Trump is, which may be one reason why they don’t challenge him. Neither Trump nor the press has to be right. They just have to keep ginning up the excitement.


Neal Gabler is an author of five books and the recipient of two LA Times Book Prizes, Timemagazine's non-fiction book of the year, USA Today's biography of the year and other awards. He is also a senior fellow at The Norman Lear Center at the University of Southern California, and is currently writing a biography of Sen. Edward Kennedy.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

"Just the Facts" Politifacts "Top 5" 2014 Rulings

We realize that some progressive writers and publications have followed Rachel Maddow's criticism of Politifact and stopped using the Tampa Bay Times fact checker division. Politifacts factually blows their assignment of ruling's from time to time. Maddow and her team adroitly pointed out a case or two where the fact checker was flat out wrong in its analysis. Wrong happens and has also (rarely) hit the Maddow Show, 

Fact checkers are very important in our age of political trickery, propaganda and outright manipulation for the purpose of political advantage. The entities also shed light of flawed personalities who have managed to win elections and use their elected offices as a platform for spewing lies. Of course, the Internet forces without questions utility for fact checkers. You only have to read one chain email to recognize how such misinformation and lies travel in the underground of the Internet.

Opinion writers on the Right often comment that Politifact is left-leaning. A charge that is an easy sell to willing believers based simply on the fact (pun intended) the vast majority of Pants on Fire rulings emanate from the Right. The criticism is a false assertion also based on the fact the Left also garners Pants on Fire rulings. I believe the 2013 "Lie Of The Year" was President Obama's "You Can Keep Your Plan" claims regarding the Affordable Care Act. 

From another perspective, if you follow this link and view a few Pants on Fires, you will find the ruling is more often assigned on the Right.

We are just over half through 2014 and Politifact has developed a list of its Top Five most popular Fact checks for the year.

Politifacts Top 5......

Top 5 most popular fact-checks for June 2014

Published on Friday, July 11th, 2014 at 9:56 a.m.
Here are PolitiFact’s top 5 most viewed fact-checks of June 2014, counting down to the most popular item.

5. More than 500 Guantanamo detainees were released or transferred under Bush

We fact-checked this claim five years ago, but it got a second life this month because of the swap of American prisoner of war Sgt. Bowe Berghdal for the release of five Taliban officials from the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detention center. Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Md., told reporters on June 16, 2009, "Some 500 detainees were released from Guantanamo during the Bush administration."

Several government documents backed up the fact that 500 Guantanamo detainees had been moved from the prison under former President George W. Bush. Our only quibble with Hoyer was his use of the word "released" -- some of the 500 were released, while others were transferred to another country. We rated his claim Mostly True.

4. Ted Cruz: 'U.S. policy has changed, now we make deals with terrorists'

When President Barack Obama announced that Bergdahl was freed by his Taliban captors after five years in custody, critics were quick to jump on his decision to release the Guantanamo Bay detainees. Later that week, White House national security adviser Susan Rice said Obama was justified because the United States was at war with Bergdahl’s captors, even if it wasn’t in the traditional sense. But Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, took exception to that characterization and said Obama changed "decades" of policy of not negotiating with terrorists.

We found that even though presidents and officials often say "we do not negotiate with terrorists," it has not proven to be a hard-and-fast rule. Obama’s actions so far do not signal a change in policy, but rather the latest in a long line of exceptions presidents have made throughout recent history. (The list includes former presidents Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton.) We rated Cruz’s statement Mostly False.

3. A video of Barack Obama speech was edited to change his meaning

A reader recently asked us to look at a YouTube video clip of Obama that puzzled them. The brief video showed Obama giving a speech in which he said, "And for the international order that we have worked for generations to build, ordinary men and women are too small-minded to govern their own affairs, that order and progress can only come when individuals surrender their rights to an all-powerful sovereign."

The clip came from an address to European youth at the Palais des Beaux Arts in Brussels on March 26, 2014. But while the clip comes from a genuine White House video, it has been edited to make an entirely different point than the one Obama was making -- Rather, he was saying that these sentiments run counter to the ideals of free will and democracy. The statement in the chain email video was spliced together in a way that twists Obama’s argument beyond recognition, so we rated it Pants on Fire.

Bonus: Check out our video showing the truncated version compared with the original speech here.

2. Have there been 74 school shootings since Sandy Hook?

A striking statistic about school shootings made its rounds on the Internet this month. It said that at least 74 school shootings had occurred since December 2012, when an assault on Sandy Hook Elementary School left 28 dead. The statistic came from Everytown for Gun Safety, an advocacy group founded by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

The figure is accurate only if you use a broad definition of "school shooting" that includes such incidents as suicides, accidents and spillover from adjacent criminal activity. The figure has some value in quantifying the proximity of guns to school campuses, but the group makes a significant stretch by tying the statistic so closely to the mass shooting at Sandy Hook. By doing this, the group closely associates the statistic with planned mass shootings targeting students and school staff -- a category that, using a more strict definition, accounts for only 10 of the 74 incidents.

The statement contains some element of truth but ignores critical facts that would give a different impression. We rated it Mostly False.

1. Did Barack Obama sign a bill to forgive all outstanding student debt? No

In early June, a reader pointed us to a shocking headline circulating in chain emails and social media posts -- "Obama Signs Bill Forgiving All Student Loan Debt." It sounded too good to be true, at least from the students’ point of view, and it turned out to be a satirical article from the website,Empire News.

While Obama has taken executive action and called for passage of a student-loan refinancing bill now pending in the Senate, he didn’t say he was planning to forgive all student debts -- a far more massive undertaking. The claim is ridiculously false, so we rated it Pants on Fire.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Misinformation, Lies, Fox News, GOP and Fact Checker

As the barrage of lies and misinformation from the political Right churns on like an oozing 1950's "The Blob," we thought we'd visit Fact Check Dot Org for a 2012 year old update on just how the Right goes about 'working your mind. But, first an acknowledgement of one of our greatest: Steve McQueen starred in The Blob."

An excerpt of the beginning of a now archived case of the sleazy kind of a guy on Fox News called Steve McQueen   A reader of Fact Check stated his/her  communication (issue)  as follows.

Subject: Obama quietly tramples the first amendment 
I truly thought this was a joke until I watched the short video of Judge Napolitano. Here is another law that separates citizens from the President. (See full question below).
If you visit the TPI  from time to time, you and I both know the credibility of any paid speaker on Fox News. We are posting this piece as a perfect example, you do not have to be a contracted show host to suffer from "Low Cred,' which is endemic to Fox News. We also want to archive the case here in the TPI. This may be one piece you chose to peruse peripherally.

Here is the full story from Fact Checker.  Remember, this work is over a year old, but it clearly shows the extent to which highly paid conservative pundits serve as propagandist.

Obama Criminalize Free Speech?