Monday, December 26, 2016


The Post-truth (see post below)  fostering of delusions is getting worse.  We’ve had false news and now we have people dismissing news that the don’t like outright, without any reflection by calling that news “false news.”

Good law and policy depends on accurate information and rational thought.  Democracy functions best when people know what is really going on.    People on both the left and right have long sought to ignore information they don’t like, but the problems seems to be getting worse. The media, in general, show a liberal bias, but that does not justify knee-jerk denials. Some people believe that the CIA and FBI are putting out false news.  It’s not only talk-show hosts, it’s prominent people in America.
“The C.I.A., the F.B.I. and the White House may all agree that Russia was behind the hacking that interfered with the election. But that was of no import to the website Breitbart News, which dismissed reports on the intelligence assessment as “left-wing fake news.”
Rush Limbaugh has diagnosed a more fundamental problem. “The fake news is the everyday news” in the mainstream media, he said on his radio show recently. “They just make it up.”
Some supporters of President-elect Donald J. Trump have also taken up the call. As reporters were walking out of a Trump rally this month in Orlando, Fla., a man heckled them with shouts of “Fake news!”
Until now, that term had been widely understood to refer to fabricated news accounts that are meant to spread virally online. But conservative cable and radio personalities, top Republicans and even Mr. Trump himself, incredulous about suggestions that fake stories may have helped swing the election, have appropriated the term and turned it against any news they see as hostile to their agenda.

In defining “fake news” so broadly and seeking to dilute its meaning, they are capitalizing on the declining credibility of all purveyors of information, one product of the country’s increasing political polarization. And conservatives, seeing an opening to undermine the mainstream media, a longtime foe, are more than happy to dig the hole deeper.

“Over the years, we’ve effectively brainwashed the core of our audience to distrust anything that they disagree with. And now it’s gone too far,” said John Ziegler, a conservative radio host, who has been critical of what he sees as excessive partisanship by pundits.”

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