WE ARE NOW deep into an affair that should have been termed either Sessionsgate or Ambassadorgate by our mainstream media. Ever clever with such trite coinages when a Democrat is involved, Attorney General Sessions and President Trump have somehow avoided having their transgression rendered in a manner that suggest the felonies of the Nixon administration of 1972–1973. But let's take a moment and take a look at another moment from January 10, 2017: at a Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing, Senator Al Franken asked Senator Jeff Sessions what he would do if he learned of any evidence that anyone affiliated with the… Continue Reading shouldn't we be calling the sessions-kislyak affair "sessionsgate" by now?
TO TELL THE TRUTH IN THE FACE OF LIES is the job of all journalists, with lies being, you know, those alternative fact thingies that are all the rage these days. Or at least that's what Lewis Wallace states in an editorial call-to-arms that he had posted on his personal blog. There he addressed objectivity, calling a lie a lie instead of an alternative fact, and embracing the accusation of being a politically correct liberal leftist! I am not a journalist. Aside from some college courses in basic journalism in 1969–1971, I have no experience in the field. Of… Continue Reading definitely "politically correct" (a third take on journalism taking on authority)
DESPITE DONALD TRUMP receiving more attention from the media than all his fellow Rep*blican competitors for the nomination combined, he has another take on it: that same media is out to get him! While some of that attention was indeed negative, most of the attention was reasonably positive. In fact, it appeared at times as if the media was downright fawning! It's probably fair to say that had the mainstream/corporate American media split the time they devoted to him and gave it to other Rep*blican candidates, Mr Trump might not have been the nominée, let alone be the President. In… Continue Reading definitely not "first but wrong" (another take on journalism taking on authority)
DAMN OUR DAMN LIBERAL MEDIA! Here's yet another example of how the DLM's bleedingheart librullness screws things up for us poor civilians trying to grok the world in which we live. When addressing a statement that was so manifestly incorrect that it had to be a lie, the national security correspondent for National Public Radio declared the statement "provably not true." 1 That is, the statement was demonstrably not so. Most of us civilians have a simple word to describe a demonstrably untrue statement: we call it a lie. 2 Needless to say, NPR's Mary Louise Kelly was asked why she didn't simply call… Continue Reading definitely "provably not true" (one take on journalism taking on authority)
EVERY TROLL IS RIGHTWINGED, or least seems to be. Every fake news site and every blog passing on alternative facts also seems to be far right of center. Of course, this is based on my experience on the freewheeling worldwide web of fact and fiction, opinion and assessment, rumor and speculation, and everything else a human can do with words, images, and symbols. The freedom of the Internet has given us millions of blogs for bloggers to express opinion or research facts. It has also given us websites with "reporters" who have never taken a single class in Journalism, and with… Continue Reading rumor and speculation can look like alternative facts
TROLLS ARE EVERYWHERE! It wasn't always this way. Once upon a time, trolls dwelled in Scandinavian folk tales, creatures hostile to all things human. But now trolls are everywhere! They're leaving forests and bridges and the rocks and trees of the Old World to dwell in the cybercities that encircle the globe. And now we call these new city-dwellers 'internet trolls.' 1 The Internet Troll is a very real creature who sows discord on internet forums such as Facebook and Reddit, along with chat rooms, the comments sections of otherwise sane news sites, and even on other people's blogs. The… Continue Reading trolls are leaving forests and bridges for the internet
"SOCIAL MEDIA HAS SWALLOWED THE NEWS, threatening the funding of public-interest reporting and ushering in an era when everyone has their own facts. Twenty-five years after the first website went online, it is clear that we are living through a period of dizzying transition. Now, we are caught in a series of confusing battles between opposing forces: between truth and falsehood, fact and rumor, kindness and cruelty; between the few and the many, the connected and the alienated; between an informed public and a misguided mob." These opening paragraphs were gleaned from the bulk of an article titled "How… Continue Reading social media and all the fake news that's fit to print