While Social Media Was Quick To Highlight And Limit The Spread Of False Claims Of Election Victory, Traditional Media Just Let It Flow

from the guys,-seriously? dept

For four years, all we've been hearing about is how social media was this terrible source of disinformation that had to be regulated because they were destroying democracy and all that. And so what happened last night/early this morning when Donald Trump falsely tried to claim he had won prior to all the votes being counted? Twitter and Facebook both reacted pretty quickly to flag the information, and highlight that it was misleading or false (and Twitter limited the ability to share it).


Meanwhile, nearly every major TV station allowed Trump to give his speech directly, in which he falsely claimed that he had already won states where there were still many votes to be counted, insisted that the counting of votes must be stopped (and claiming he was going to ask the Supreme Court to stop the count), and suggesting that there was fraud going on in a few states that still had significant mail-in ballots to count (most of which they hadn't been able to count prior to yesterday because of Republican legislatures blocking that ability). There was no attempt to delay what he was saying, to contextualize it or to point out it was wrong until well after it had broadcast.

And then you had journalistic malpractice via the Associated Press. Two of its White House reporters, Zeke Miller and Jonathan Lemire, decided to do a "straight" tweet repeating what Trump had said, without any context, without any caveats or context, as if it were factual reporting.


It's flabbergasting that the AP would take this view from nowhere approach to reporting on something so critical. And, even worse, since so many local newspapers just rerun AP newswire, that's the take that many people are going to see.

Other sources got it correct. Buzzfeed -- a site that old school journalists used to love to mock -- did a hell of a lot more journalism than the AP:

The Guardian, a UK paper, got the story correct as well:

We've been noting in the past year how studies have shown that TV news is the key source for disinformation and how it doesn't tend to go viral on social media until after it appears on TV.

So can someone explain to me why it is everyone wants to rush out and blame social media for disinformation?

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Filed Under: content moderation, disinformation, donald trump, elections, fact checking, jonathan lemire, media, social media, zeke miller
Companies: ap, associated press, buzzfeed, facebook, guardian, twitter


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  • icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 1:13am

    Because its trendy to blame teh interwebs.
    They stole my followers, they gave me a time out for calling someone a n*****, I'm not seeing posts!!!

    The media is afraid of Trump.
    Thats all it is.
    They will revoke a hard pass on a whim, if you ask a tough question he'll insult you or worse send his faithful to harass you. I mean its not like they turn up with guns making threats... not like we can expect the FBI to do anything about it.

    We've reached a point where reporting the truth is an act of bravery in the face of unhinged armed wackjobs who refuse to believe what they saw & heard themselves, instead accepting Trumps claims of I never said that.

    Of course if Trump wanted a landslide why didn't he make a single Q prediction come true? They haven't gotten a single thing they hoped for & yet keep supporting their savior who is hardly aware they exist.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 3:52am

      Re:

      Teh intarwebs turned me into a newt

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 3:54am

      Re:

      "The media is afraid of Trump."

      I suspect they have a common controller, the media and trump as they both seem to be wholly owned by corporate interests.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 5 Nov 2020 @ 12:13am

        Re: Re:

        "I suspect they have a common controller, the media and trump as they both seem to be wholly owned by corporate interests."

        Yeah. They both stand to gain from doing exactly what they do. I'm with Chomsky on this one; Conspiracies aren't needed to explain self-serving greedy people cutting corners to profit.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Lewis8v, 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:29am

      Social vs Traditional Media

      Fact #1: There js no source of neutral, unbiased news anywhere in mass media.

      TV news has been heavily biased and highly superficial since its origin and a commercial circus since the 1970's.
      Print media is better but still stronngly biased in all cases.
      Social Media is openly biased and much more publicly honest in its "filtering" (censorship) of facts & viewpoints it dislikes.

      Pick your Poison --- or sharply discount the validity of any "news" from mass media.

      The internet brims with good factual sources on almost any subject, but it takes some experience and discipline to routinely access them.

      "Free News" from mass media is worth exactly what you paid for it 0000

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:38am

        Re: Social vs Traditional Media

        "Fact #1: There js no source of neutral, unbiased news anywhere in mass media."

        Fact #2: there in not any source of truly neutral, unbiased information anywhere. If you think that your favourite non-mass media source is completely unbiased, I'd check your wallet because you've been conned.

        The trick is to understand the inherent biases in the sources you visit and temper them with sources with different biases, not to pretend you don't have the bias problem.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:01am

          Re: Re: Social vs Traditional Media

          I guess some people are too lazy to do their own reading and want someone else to summarize it for them, because they are too busy berating others for being lazy.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Uriel-238 (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 10:37am

      Sounds like the limited-access gambit is still in play.

      During the George W. Bush administration, news agencies that were (too) critical of the White House or spread unofficial leaks quickly lost their access to inside feeds, which was a big deal since we were Mission Accomplishing in Iraq and fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan.

      It was a good way to make sure only the official casualty counts got out, and the Iraqi civilian casualty counts... didn't.

      It slowed the big reveals of the season, that we were using mercenaries (or Private Military Contractors, and still largely use them today) and we were torturing people at Abu Ghraib.

      Obama kept the same system in place to curb discussions of drone strikes or the many other much-more-American-than-we'd-like activities going on at the time. So the old-guard news-media leash system was still in play when Trump came into power.

      Only Trump is so openly antagonistic to the press that he couldn't keep things polite, so the leak-catching elements ceased working. After all when the Press Secretary is telling you nothing useful anyway, it doesn't actually hurt to turn to leaks.

      But the election results are telling me why they're still giving Trump a spotlight and mic. An awful lot of Americans want an entertaining president more than they want one that could actually govern.

      And man, that Trump can talk smack. (Even if he can't dance.)

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That Anonymous Coward (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 7:33pm

      Re:

      Oh the irony of AP having a story today judging if platforms did enough or did it right while ignoring their own reporters shooting themselves in the genital region.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 1:26am

    When they do it is "being a view from nowhere"

    When their new competitors do it is called "being a threat to our democracy".

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Bobvious, 4 Nov 2020 @ 2:22am

    Let me get this straight

    So Trump is already claiming he WON something he has just described as "a major fraud" and an "embarrassment to our country"?

    I think he's suffering from Premature Election Syndrome.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 2:45am

      Re: Let me get this straight

      "So Trump is already claiming he WON something he has just described as "a major fraud" and an "embarrassment to our country"?"

      No, he just misheard and thought people were using those terms to talk about the election, when in reality they were talking about him.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:19am

      Re: Let me get this straight

      That would be the most accurate thing he's ever said if he was right.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Thad (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:27am

      Re: Let me get this straight

      He also said that he's tough on crime and Biden wants to defund the police and let armed gangs run amok in our cities, and also that Biden's crime bill was draconian and needlessly put innocent people in prison and the only way to get criminal justice reform is to reelect Trump.

      Logical consistency isn't really Donald Trump's thing.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Gwiz (profile), 6 Nov 2020 @ 10:49am

      Re: Let me get this straight

      I think he's suffering from Premature Election Syndrome.

      Aren't you supposed to see a doctor when your election lasts this long?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 2:23am

    So can someone explain to me why it is everyone wants to rush out and blame social media for disinformation?

    Because social media is a new thing, while TV and newspapers are so familiar that they have become trusted, whether it is deserved or not.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 2:43am

      Re:

      Well, in theory, TV and newspapers have editors, journalists who fact check sources before publication, and print newspapers have a lead time that allows them to spent a decent amount of time doing these instead of rushing to the public the moment they have something. This makes them better than social media, where people just share memes and headlines randomly without doing any of the checking.

      In theory, but we sadly all know how the real world is working.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 3:59am

        Re: Re:

        Yellow journalism has been around for some time, certainly well before the advent of the internet and its anti conservative social media websites.

        It occurs to me that maybe it is not the administration of the website that is anti conservative but it is the users of same that are anti conservative and that is what conservatives are all upset about. idk, seems they just want to scream at everyone.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 4:09am

      Re:

      Which is ironic, since it takes a long time for something to become as institutionally corrupt as traditional media.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Glenn, 4 Nov 2020 @ 2:38am

    Either way, half the country is made up of shitforbrains who are perfectly happy to have a fascist psychopath in the White House who's done nothing to represent American ideals either here or anywhere else in the world.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 2:58am

      Re:

      if Americans would not have not been killing innocent civilians abroad with drones calling them "collateral damage" for the last 20 years or so, under republicans or democrats alike, and spying on all the communications of the rest of the world illegally, I could perhaps believe that its only half of them happy with a fascist warmongering psychopath. But to an external observer it really looks like its hundred percent. Or perhaps the ideals you are referring to are not so ideal after all.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 4:05am

        Re: Re:

        Not sure what you are observing in order to come to your conclusion, but you might want to get your vision checked.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:17am

          Re: Re: Re:

          There were plenty of "unfortunate" drone strike under Obama and some under Bush. And it's an open secret that the NSA tries to hoover up every electronic communication that it can lay it's hands on. The post you are replying to is rather hostile in tone, but you are the one who seems to be having trouble seeing reality,

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:33am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            " I could perhaps believe that its only half of them happy with a fascist warmongering psychopath. But to an external observer it really looks like its hundred percent. "

            Since op didn't, perhaps you can supply data in support of the 100% claim. What are you looking at that gives you this warped view of things? Is it a particular media conglomerate? Is it social media?

            All it takes for the claim to be false is for one eligible voter to not be happy with a war mongering psychopath at the helm. It would be easy to use terms that are not all inclusive, but that was not done.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 10:28am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              We are just conflating 100% of the population with what governments do.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 5 Nov 2020 @ 1:41am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                "We are just conflating 100% of the population with what governments do."

                and I am just pointing out how silly that is.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 5 Nov 2020 @ 9:21am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  One who advises others to check their vision keeps their own eyes firmly closed about what their country does in the name with their tacit approval.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 6 Nov 2020 @ 12:47am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "Since op didn't, perhaps you can supply data in support of the 100% claim. What are you looking at that gives you this warped view of things? Is it a particular media conglomerate? Is it social media?"

              I think I may have an inkling what the logic is and it's not that unsound, except possibly based on a mistaken premise.

              Drone strikes, massive collateral damage, torture, rampant mass surveillance, anti-whistleblower action - i.e. war crimes and spying on the citizenry - was common both under GWB and Obama and this, to the american voters, was not a dealbreaker. They were OK with it.

              Thing is that less than 60% of the US citizenry normally bothers (or has not been disenfranchised) to even vote, so unlike EU member states where voting percentage is usually upwards of 90% this isn't really as indicative of the US as that AC claims.

              It's grim enough though; internationally those 60% don't consider it a dealbreaker to have a CiC willing to order/allow atrocities. This is why US reputation has been rapidly going downhill.

              The last few days may have become a wakeup call for many of those as what the latest election has shown is that of the voting population almost half don't consider racism, anti-science and anti-education sentiment, antisemitism and outright fascist ideology to be a dealbreaker as long as it means more Trump and more GOP.

              Personally I'm hoping this means a lot more of the liberals and moderates will take their blinders off and realize that if they want a nation they want their children to live in now's the time to get their shit together.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:53am

          Re: Re: Re:

          I live in EU and I see how a lot of refugees are fleeing their home after US led troops destroyed their country (take libya for example). So for me the observation is the following I pass the refugee shelter in my village while going to work every morning and wonder every time what kind of people could elect a government capable of exporting such destruction and hunger.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:10am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            "wonder every time what kind of people could elect a government capable of exporting such destruction and hunger."

            Many of them are uninformed and are not aware of these atrocities, either from a lack of interest or a lack of reporting - for whatever reason. A small number of people do support the imperialistic war mongering bullshit for various reasons, I suspect mostly financial. Yes, it is sick and demented.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 6 Nov 2020 @ 2:07am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "Many of them are uninformed and are not aware of these atrocities, either from a lack of interest or a lack of reporting - for whatever reason."

              It's not rocket science. The US had a brief golden era where it walked the talk. The myth of the US being the most liberal nation on earth and the greatest place to live has been perpetuated for generations.
              The idea that this self-image had been replaced with smoke and mirrors as far back as the 60's was so frightening that no few people who ought to have known better now don the MAGA hat and vote for whoever is sufficiently different from the "more of the same" which brought the nation to the current point. A "strong plain-speaking man".

              And although the skittish fringe rooted in fear and anger is bad enough the real harm is caused by the majority of all those bloody moderates saying "We don't want to hear that shit!" and forgetting about it as if at some point one of the talking heads sent to the white house will make a clear difference.

              Which it doesn't, and the downward slide continues. The US has been falling apart from the inside for a long time and though the dumbass fringe in red hats may be ignorant and easily led they aren't blind about the lower classes - usually them - getting a raw deal.
              That they blame the wrong people for it and rail about "leftist liberalism" (which would actually be the only cure for those ills given what caused the harm in the first place) is just like a wounded animal biting at the hands which would help it.

              This is exactly how it went down in Germany 1933. A steady decline and a political caste either inept, self-serving or afraid to rock the boat further giving way to a populist scapegoat movement driven by emotions like fear and hatred, eager to blame all the bad things on - in this case - liberals, leftists, sexual "deviants", the academics and brown people. Mixed with the Usual Suspects who we sometimes see on these boards eager to wedge "ze jewish conspiracy" into that mess, as usual.

              Right now the issue is that, accounting for half of the voters still being trumpist and ~60% of the US citizenry voting, just about 30% of all americans are just fine with leadership catering to white supremacists and which has so far cost the US 200,000 needlessly dead americans.

              This is fucking frightening.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Samuel Abram (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:26am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Several reasons:

            1. The Iraq War Crime was extremely unpopular and it partially led Obama to victory (the other was the 2008 stock market crash). Of course, when a Democrat is elected president as a progressive or a (non-right-wing) populist, they tend to abandon some of their campaign promises (to be fair to Obama, he kept some of his, such as the Iran deal). Republicans tend to either keep theirs or make it worse.

            2. Much as people want to escape the two-party system in the US, we've always had one. First it was the Federalists vs. the Democratic-Republicans, then the Democrats vs. the Whigs, and now the current state of the Democrats vs. the Republicans. If a third party were to ever be elected president again, it's only to replace a dead second party.

            3. It wasn't until recently that an actual American left wing was revived in both the federal (see: representatives AOC, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley) and state (See Delegate Lee Carter in Virginia, State Senators Summer Lee and Sara Innamorato in Pennsylvania, and State Senator Julia Salazar in New York State) level. McCarthyism in the 1950's suppressed open leftism for generations and it wasn't until recently where people's economic well-being was so poor that they thought socialism seemed like a good idea again.

            4. You know how bad and insular Hollywood is? Washington is like that, except they have actual power (the MPAA wouldn't have power if it weren't for Washington). People in Washington don't give a shit about what's happening in the real world or how people can make ends meet or the consequences of their actions; it is an island in and of itself.

            Did that answer your question?

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:39am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "It wasn't until recently that an actual American left wing "

              Let's just note that most of the "actual left wing" you mentioned there are either saying "Europe doesn't have the same problems we do, maybe we can take a few pointers" or "FDR sure seemed to kick the country out of poverty with his New Deal, let's try that again?".

              On a global scale, they're still nothing like a left wing.

              "You know how bad and insular Hollywood is? Washington is like that"

              Well, not exactly. You can still make successful movies without Hollywood. It's much harder to get them funded and distributed to the mainstream, but it's possible. No matter how much you try, you can't get meaningful political change without Washington.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Samuel Abram (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:49am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Fair enough, except for one thing, though:

                No matter how much you try, you can't get meaningful political change without Washington.

                The legalization of Marijuana throughout many different states suggests otherwise.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 7:31am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  It's still illegal on the federal level, and lack of enforcement depends on certain actors keeping up the pretence that they believe in states rights. That could change very soon if current events go a certain way.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • icon
                    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 9 Nov 2020 @ 3:23am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    "It's still illegal on the federal level, and lack of enforcement depends on certain actors keeping up the pretence that they believe in states rights."

                    To whit, with pot still being a federal crime while in some states not being that, it usually means a lot of problems using any instrument tailored around federal oversight. Banks, for instance, and any other infrastructure provider with interstate mechanisms.

                    And that's not even bringing up the lack of judiciary support. Can you imagine a pot grower trying to bring a court case to the higher courts where judges assume that on their level that pot grower needs to do 10-20 in leavenworth?

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 7:18am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "Of course, when a Democrat is elected president as a progressive or a (non-right-wing) populist, they tend to abandon some of their campaign promises (to be fair to Obama, he kept some of his, such as the Iran deal). Republicans tend to either keep theirs or make it worse. "

              Repubs never abandon their promises? LOL
              The hits keep coming

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Samuel Abram (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 10:00am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Fair. I deserved that.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 9 Nov 2020 @ 3:31am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Well, they are better at keeping a select few of them than democrats are. If their platform is Law and Order you'll see more knees on throats and more rhetoric around how US society can't afford to have police obeying the same law as everyone else.

                If their platform is international there'll be a war.

                And if their platform is society and family you can count on them to try to make a solid effort in overturning Roe v. Wade and demonizing LBTQ.

                Democrats are less predictable in that you don't know whether they'll even attempt ANY of their promises.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              JMT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 12:59pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "...it wasn't until recently where people's economic well-being was so poor that they thought socialism seemed like a good idea again."

              Socialist policies, not 'Socialism'. Looking after more people, fucking over fewer.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 1:16pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                One of the major failings of political discourse is that some people have been convinced that people talking about "socialism" are talking about the USSR and not Scandinavia.

                I saw an American political meme being shared by a friend who has some unfortunate right-wing news influences that said something along the lines "we should send socialist millennials to the countries they want to emulate and see how they like it". Erm, dude, you know they're actually talking about where we live, right?

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  Uriel-238 (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 1:27pm

                  The USSR

                  The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was never socialist nor communist. It was a totalitarian authoritarian provisional state that might, someday relinquish its power back to the people.

                  China is the same.

                  We've never achieved a true Communist state, so we can't actually speak to how well it would work. Frankly, it's something about which I personally have gaps in my knowledge, like Anarchism.

                  A communist state might actually be a neat working idea, but what Marx failed to do is work out the details of how to get one without the provisional process getting too corrupt.

                  And in all fairness, the US is so crappy a democracy that we can argue we haven't actually tried real democracy. The whole thing is gunked up with provisions to allow plutocrats to retain their power over the rest of us.

                  These days, some of our officials openly state The US is a republic, not a democracy as if they well intend it to remain in its authoritarian, neo-feudal state of squalor and mass precarity.

                  Hence the movement towards fascism, where regimes go to die.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • icon
                    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 9 Nov 2020 @ 5:42am

                    Re: The USSR

                    "We've never achieved a true Communist state, so we can't actually speak to how well it would work. Frankly, it's something about which I personally have gaps in my knowledge, like Anarchism."

                    Ironically true communism is almost identical to true libertarianism. Both rely on the abolition of all forms of central authority and the inherent moral and ethical superiority of something best envisioned in Friedrich Nietzche's original übermensch, before the nazis decided that meant physical, decidedly caucasian characteristics and a hard-on for scapegoating. A fictional ideal of a human being who needs neither church nor state to guide them to actively pursue good and avoid evil.

                    While humans are human we won't ever see a true communist or libertarian ideal which hasn't instantly devolved into a society of squabbling warlords.
                    True communism can only be envisioned by viewing how a computer with a decent OS handles resource allocation.
                    True libertarianism only by a mountain of corpses with the last few survivors standing on top in a permanent state of mexican standoff.

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                    • icon
                      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 9 Nov 2020 @ 5:52am

                      Re: Re: The USSR

                      [Addendum]

                      "These days, some of our officials openly state The US is a republic, not a democracy as if they well intend it to remain in its authoritarian, neo-feudal state of squalor and mass precarity."

                      Well, yes, the Founding Fathers were very clear on this. Looking at it from their point of view, in their lifetimes only very few people ever had the education and ability to gather information which allowed them to make conscious decisions. About 90% of the citizenry was easily led rabble unable to comprehend the cause of a societal ill, let alone propose a solution which didn't make it worse.

                      Thus they feared democracy - mob rule.
                      Today we still have an issue with the blind sheep voting on issues they don't comprehend and do not want to understand - but even in the US the difference is vast, with at least 50% of the citizenry being clever enough to understand the concept of critical thinking.

                      Yet those people still live under a ruleset which assumes the normal citizen is too dumb to pour water out of a boot and will elect the first demagogue to win their hearts with promises of carrots and sticks.

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 6 Nov 2020 @ 2:35am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "Much as people want to escape the two-party system in the US, we've always had one."

              It's not a good look for the Founding Fathers that their abject fear of actual democracy was what laid the cornerstone for the shambled mess and the two-party system which followed. The college of electors and the constitution completely lacking any viable enforcement of effective representation is what has nurtured the current festering midden of US politics.

              " People in Washington don't give a shit about what's happening in the real world or how people can make ends meet or the consequences of their actions; it is an island in and of itself. "

              It's darkly ironic that this closely corresponds to situations in history shortly before one inbred hothouse-bred twit too many ignorantly asks about the starving poor and suggests that if they don't have bread why don't they just eat cake? The US, closer than any other modern nation, has managed to meander itself into neo-feudalism.

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          • icon
            PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:42am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            " I pass the refugee shelter in my village while going to work every morning"

            That's the difference. You get to see the human cost first hand, while the average supporter of these actions see a bunch of footage from thousands of miles away in countries and cultures they will never see, and probably never given the context that they are ultimately responsible for the situation.

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 7:56am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              The US would have to face this if we could look at the refugees flooding over our southern border and make the connection that most of them are coming here because the US destabilized and destroyed their home countries. But we don't. Instead we stick them in cages, separate them to show that they don't want to come here, and then deport them back to become victims of what they fled from.

              The US should be able to see how much evil our foreign policy has done abroad, but we have a habit of ignoring it or blaming it on others.

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              • icon
                PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 12:41pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                "The US would have to face this if we could look at the refugees flooding over our southern border and make the connection that most of them are coming here because the US destabilized and destroyed their home countries"

                Sadly, the people supporting this stuff don't grasp that they're not all Mexicans, let alone was compelled them to risk everything to travel so far in the first place.

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              • icon
                Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 6 Nov 2020 @ 2:40am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                "The US should be able to see how much evil our foreign policy has done abroad, but we have a habit of ignoring it or blaming it on others."

                The one silver lining coming out of Trump's four years in office is that it tore the blinders right from the eyes of moderates and liberals. This last election has told the US as a whole what the US as a whole should already have known - but has managed to deny and repress; that half of the voting population of the US is OK with fascism, racism and misogyny; It's not a dealbreaker for them.

                Now it just remains to be seen whether those liberals and moderates manage to make themselves keep seeing this or whether they decide to just shut their eyes to it again and go with the Niemöller defense.

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      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 10:54am

        Nations and their peoples often disagree.

        The German people were sorely misinformed about WWI, why they were in it and how the war was going. And the population of ancient Rome had no idea about the imperial expansion until Caesar set up his victory pageants. In more recent news, most Americans didn't know about the drone strikes, and weren't sure to believe the mass surveillance program. They're still finding it rough to believe the police likes murdering innocent people and taking money. Meanwhile in Israel, the people are really rather cross about its conservative government pounding on Palestine and saber rattling at Iran (and vice versa). Iranians are unthrilled about their regime ready to throw ordinary lives into a war.

        This all is why we stepped away from Constitutional Monarchy towards something (slightly) more democratic. It just looks like we've been too slight so far.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 3:18am

      Re:

      It's more like half the electorate. Only a fraction, maybe half, of people residing in the US are allowed to vote. And only about half of them like this coked-out jibbering nazi. So, it's more like 25-30%.

      But yeah, the rest of the population isn't exactly amazing either. I've been here my whole life and never wavered in my opinion that it's a terrible country.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 4:08am

        Re: Re:

        From where did you get this "information"?

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:46am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Here's an estimate around 70%:
          http://statchatva.org/2019/11/11/elections-2020-projecting-eligible-voters-by-state/

          That seems to be based only on age and citizenship, not considering disenfranchisement (despite saying "Mental incompetence or incarceration" can cause it). CNN says felony disenfranchisement affects a little over 2% of people:
          https://edition.cnn.com/2020/10/15/us/felony-convictions-voting-sentencing-project-study/ind ex.html

          Anyway, it looks safe to say that about two-thirds of people in the USA can vote. Only about 50-65% of them generally do, which means the president tends to be voted in by about 25%-35% of the population (roughly in line with the previous poster's estimate):
          https://edition.cnn.com/2016/11/11/politics/popular-vote-turnout-2016/index.html

          That doesn't mean they like or really support the president. Many people vote strategically, just to keep another candidate out.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 9:17am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Common sense? Look it up, not everyone is eligible to vote. Really high turnout this year though, about 65% of the electorate I've seen, which is itself only a fraction of the population.

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 10:12am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            "Only a fraction, maybe half, of people residing in the US are allowed to vote."

            I assumed the comment was talking about eligible voters even though it neglected to state such, because including under age children in the calculation of those allowed to vote is a bit silly.

            So, the well over 50% voter turnout contradicts the claim that half of the eligible voters are not allowed to vote. I realize disenfranchisement affects many but it is not half - thankfully.

            Common sense? Yes, common sense tells you the orig comment is lacking information.

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 10:37am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              No one said half the eligible voters are allowed to vote. This is literally central to the OP in pointing out the difference between the electorate and the entire population.

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      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 6 Nov 2020 @ 2:51am

        Re: Re:

        "Only a fraction, maybe half, of people residing in the US are allowed to vote. And only about half of them like this coked-out jibbering nazi. So, it's more like 25-30%."

        Proportionally that's twice as many as the germans favoring Hitler in 1933.
        He was able to win the chancellorship with only 12% of the germans voting for him. But because the total proportion of voting citizenry was roughly 30% that meant he got 36% of the ballots cast.

        Trump isn't Hitler. He's someone who's personality makes clear that dictators are his idols because he was raisded to admire the "killer" able to claw himself to the top over the corpse of others. If anything he's Nero. Vain, self-important, petty, and completely uncaring of the morals of his adherents as long as they are willing to chant his name.

        But that's about a third of the US population is fine with this tells us much about the US - that it's an occasional sociopath.

        "...the rest of the population isn't exactly amazing either."

        Not exactly true. It's just that the polarization is staggering. The main issue is that active enlightened liberals are a clear minority and the vast mass of moderates are apathetic and unwilling to stand up and draw a line in sand. The most harmful aspect of US politics in recent decades has been the desperate willingness of the "moderates" to repetitively follow the extreme right just one more step to the right just so there can be some form of bipartisanship or compromise.

        The US is, if nothing else, a nation where the majority are Neville Chamberlain.

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    • icon
      Uriel-238 (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 11:00am

      If we want to be generous...

      ...we can also factor in the Republican party has a MASSIVE election-tampering machine meant to disenfranchise non-GOP voters and suppress votes.

      Much the way Trump argued there were undocumented voters in California in 2016 that gave Clinton the majority, every accusation is a confession.

      If they had zombies coming from the grave, classical ballot stuffing or even electronic voting machine miscalculations I wouldn't be surprised. But their suppression patrols and legal shenanigans are evident and known.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 11:50am

        Re: If we want to be generous...

        This is kind of my big worry. The Republicans have been proving that they are willing to bend, break, or change every rule to win that there is no telling what they are actually doing. As some have continued to mention on Twitter "Every accusation is a confession" and the GOP has been accusing the Democrats of large-scale voter fraud. Its getting to the point of not being able to trust that any of these elections are valid on their face.

        Did Mitch win because they ran a huge ad blitz or because they suppressed voters or they stuffed the ballot??? The zealots I personally know don't care how its done as long as their team wins, and that is scary.

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    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 5 Nov 2020 @ 12:27am

      Re:

      "...a fascist psychopath in the White House who's done nothing to represent American ideals either here or anywhere else in the world."

      I beg to differ. Trump has certainly represented all of those most American of ideals - the ones practiced, not the ones preached. You can't really argue that if he keeps getting almost half the votes in each state he's not representing the US quite well. If Trump goes away and Biden gets into office it doesn't mean the half of the US which is all about malice, hatred of the other, and "book learnt BAD" magically disappears.

      What Trump has truly done - ironically one of the few good things to emerge from the last four years - is to decisively tear off the mask the US kept putting on before looking in the mirror.
      And unfortunately I'm thinking THAT specific act is what a lot of liberal americans and normal joes and janes will never forgive him for. Putting it right out there that half of the neighbors they get along with just fine wouldn't, so much, get along with them if their skin was darker and that yes, good old jovial uncle Bob is a racist shitwit.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 3:13am

    Great point, and I'm disturbed to see how the AP ran the story. I was a bit reassured to see Fox News not parroting him, since Chris Wallace was there to be the sole voice of proximity to reason. They may have changed their tune by now. Ben Shapiro condemned him too, on one of those occasions where he pretends to think for himself.

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    icon
    Koby (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 4:31am

    Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

    It is not a good sign for freedom when supposed technology advocates are demanding a Ministry of Truth.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 4:55am

      Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

      You can't handle the truth

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    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:14am

      Is it any better when agents of the government demand something similar — like, say, a special education curriculum dedicated to “patriotic history”?

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    • identicon
      Rocky, 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:19am

      Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

      I think you got it wrong, it is not a good sign of freedom when the leader of a country lies about election results which begs the question why you think it's wrong to point out the lies and and criticize those who unquestionably promulgates the lies?

      You do understand the meaning of "The Ministry of Truth", right? The Ministry of Truth refers to government sponsored propaganda and the revisionism of events so they fit the approved "truth" - in this case Trump declaring himself a winner even though not all votes have been counted.

      That you don't find this frightening tells us two things: You don't care about truth and democracy, and that you think it's okay to lie and it's bad to point the lies out.

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      • icon
        Stephen T. Stone (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:26am

        Donald Trump called for an end to the counting of ballots this morning — well before some states have counted anywhere near all their mail-in/absentee ballots. If we saw this going on in another country, we’d probably call it a coup attempt. I see little reason to avoid doing the same with Trump’s call to disenfranchise potentially millions of voters.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 10:41am

          Re:

          Never mind the extraordinary increase in mail-in voting (which he has been trying to derail via rhetoric and attacks on the Post Office), he is attacking bog-standard tabulating times which are featured in every election.

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          • icon
            PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 12:42pm

            Re: Re:

            "he is attacking bog-standard tabulating times which are featured in every election."

            Well, he's attacked every other norm of civilisation, so this is sadly not too surprising.

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      • icon
        Koby (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:34am

        Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

        which begs the question why you think it's wrong to point out the lies and and criticize those who unquestionably promulgates the lies?

        I think you should be free to criticize all you want. But that's not what's happening. Leftists censors are demanding that events not even be covered at all, such that individuals ought not be allowed to form their own opinion.

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        • icon
          PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:53am

          Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

          "I think you should be free to criticize all you want"

          There's a difference between criticism and propaganda.

          "Leftists censors are demanding that events not even be covered at all"

          No, in this case they're demanding that the sitting president of the USA not spread rampant misinformation about election results hours, maybe days, before the results are counted in order to ensure that no matter how the result eventually goes there will be violence from his cult.

          " individuals ought not be allowed to form their own opinion."

          No, we're asking that people be allowed to form their own opinion based on factual information, rather than dangerous propaganda that's calling for violence if an honest election goes a certain way.

          Why do you have such a problem with people being allowed to form their own opinions rather than being told how to think by a known and proven con artist?

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          • icon
            Koby (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:18am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

            No, we're asking that people be allowed to form their own opinion based on factual information, rather than dangerous propaganda that's calling for violence if an honest election goes a certain way.

            Noone gets to decide what information is too dangerous to be released to the public in a free society.

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            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:23am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

              "Noone gets to decide what information is too dangerous to be released to the public in a free society."

              You do know that your stated opinion here is that government agents should be able to release misleading propaganda in order to undermine a democratic election unchallenged, while private citizens should not be able to counter that with their own speech? Surely you realise that?

              Right?

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                icon
                Koby (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 7:11am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instruct

                You do know that your stated opinion here is that government agents should be able to release their personal opinion in order to undermine a democratic election unchallenged,

                Yes, even people who currently work for the government enjoy the right to free speech, and can do so even if you disagree.

                while private citizens should not be able to counter that with their own speech

                Who says that private citizens should not be allowed to express certain opinions? Certainty not me, and I would oppose that. Currently, only the leftists seek to supress particular speech with which they disagree.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 7:22am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Inst

                  "Currently, only the leftists seek to supress particular speech with which they disagree."

                  Talking out yer ass is fun and exciting, impress friends and family!
                  Your continual stream of bullshit is entertaining, keep up the charade.

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                • icon
                  PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 7:37am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Inst

                  "Yes, even people who currently work for the government enjoy the right to free speech, and can do so even if you disagree."

                  So, you support misleading propaganda from the President, so long as he pretends it's just his opinion? It's a shame his followers won't be making that distinction. You do know that we're dealing with people who are treating his supposed private Tweets as if they were official government communications, right?

                  "Who says that private citizens should not be allowed to express certain opinions?"

                  You do whenever you demand that people not be able to express opinions through their own private property, because you're butthurt about them having the same rights as a restaurant owner would have.

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                • identicon
                  Rocky, 4 Nov 2020 @ 7:59am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Inst

                  Yes, even people who currently work for the government enjoy the right to free speech, and can do so even if you disagree.

                  That depends. If a government employee is speaking as a private citizen, the 1 amendment apply to some extent, but if that employee's speech is due to "official government business" their rights are curtailed. See Garcetti v. Ceballos.

                  Since Trump is a federal employee, his free speech rights are curtailed - which means telling lies that impact the functioning of the government and elections are actually punishable by law.

                  So no, people who currently work for the government doesn't enjoy the right to free speech in it's entirety. You would know this if you actually looked up information instead of posting uninformed opinions.

                  Who says that private citizens should not be allowed to express certain opinions? Certainty not me, and I would oppose that. Currently, only the leftists seek to supress particular speech with which they disagree.

                  If private citizens express their opinion by not allowing lies being spread on their private property, are they leftist?

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                  • icon
                    PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:10am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not

                    "Since Trump is a federal employee, his free speech rights are curtailed - which means telling lies that impact the functioning of the government and elections are actually punishable by law."

                    Also, since Trump has insisted on carrying out official government communications via his personal Twitter account, it has already been judged by the courts as a government communication channel.

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                  • icon
                    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 5 Nov 2020 @ 12:39am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not

                    "You would know this if you actually looked up information instead of posting uninformed opinions."

                    The alt-right isn't keen on "book learning". I'm pretty sure since Koby's made up his mind he'd rather not disturb it with facts.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:02am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Inst

                  How's that injected chlorine doing?
                  Shine a bright flashlight up yer ass lately?

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:39am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Inst

                  Currently, only the leftists seek to supress particular speech with which they disagree.

                  And only the rightists will continue to complain about it instead of fucking off to Parler, like they said they would do.

                  Tell me Koby, should a "christian" baker be forced to bake a cake for an LGBTQ wedding?

                  If so, great! Tell your friends, because they think otherwise.
                  If not, why should Twitter be forced to do the functional equivalent of the same thing?

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                  • icon
                    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 9:00am

                    Tell me Koby, should a "christian" baker be forced to bake a cake for an LGBTQ wedding?

                    Not Koby (obviously), but this question has a nuanced answer that I’m not sure he can provide.

                    If the baker offers wedding cakes to the general public, they don’t get to decide who makes up “the general public” — they must offer those cakes to gay customers as well. Everyone has to follow the laws for public accomodation businesses, and those laws don’t have religious exemptions for discrimination.

                    The decorating of the cake, on the other hand, brings the First Amendment into play. The government saying “if you have cakes on your menu, you must offer them to everyone” is one thing. The government saying “you must decorate those cakes with whatever the customer wants, no matter what” would compel speech from the baker. Last I checked, the government can’t do that.

                    And I’ll remind you that in the Masterpiece Cakeshop case, the owner of that bakery no longer offers wedding cakes as a result of the initial ruling that said “yeah, you gotta treat gay people equally here, the law says so”. The bakery owner made that choice of their own free will so they wouldn’t have to sell wedding cakes to gay people.

                    So yes, the law should make a baker to bake a wedding cake for gay customers if the baker plans to offer wedding cakes to all customers — but decorating that cake should be left to the customer if the baker says “I can’t put that on your cake”. Azucar Bakery won their case because they had a policy against hateful messaging that didn’t single out religion in general (or any specific religion). They also won because they offered to accomodate the customer by selling him what he needed to put anti-gay messaging on those cakes. The courts shouldn’t compel speech — but I see no issue with the law compelling equal service for gay customers in public-facing businesses. Separate but equal was bullshit when it was about Black people; it’s still bullshit when it’s about queer people.

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                • icon
                  techflaws (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 10:46am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Inst

                  Currently, only the leftists seek to supress particular speech with
                  which they disagree.

                  Apart from the countless leftists that were banned for mocking the whiny snowflakes on Parler for their insignifanct platform?

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:30am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

              Do you see anything wrong in a president setting up conditions for a civil war to keep himself in power?

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:03am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instruct

                Well, it was ok for hitler

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              • icon
                Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 5 Nov 2020 @ 12:44am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instruct

                Depends on your point of view. If you are the part of the 40-50% of the american citizenry which voted for Trump you are probably rooting for that with all you have.

                It's important to recall that what the four years with Trump has shown everyone - well, the people needing to be shown were mainly americans - is that the US is, as a nation, about 40% racist sociopath and this is a major issue in any nation wanting to take a leadership position and moral high ground based on example, in the "free" world.

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            • identicon
              Rocky, 4 Nov 2020 @ 7:04am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

              Noone gets to decide what information is too dangerous to be released to the public in a free society.

              Even if it is false or just pure lies? It's not like people have died because of that... Oh wait...

              Also, noone gets to decide what information should be carried on someone else's property. But I guess that's too hard for you to understand, you really really want that "Ministry of Truth" so they can force others to carry lies.

              If not for the collateral damage, I really wish you could experience first-hand the horror of what you demand.

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 10:42am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

              No one gets to decide who carries your chosen information in a free society. FTFY.

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            • icon
              Uriel-238 (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 1:16pm

              Information too dangerous to be released in a free society

              Actually we do have limits on free speech on the bases that it's too dangerous for a free society. It is because of this that the printable plastic one-use gun was challenged illegal information. We also have restrictions on the intersection between porn and pictures of children.

              Then, we proles are subject to limits on terror-related or inciteful speech. While we let President Trump say whatever he wants and he has incited violence (sometimes successfully), the rest of us do so at risk of getting visits from the local precinct, or the FBI.

              Curiously, our pundits and officials criticized Palin when she, as McCain's running mate called for lone wolf attacks on Democratic government officials. (She wasn't that explicit about it, but there was definitely an air like It would be a crying shame if something untoward happened to any of these people.) And Bill O'Reilly got only the mildest criticism for the Assassination of George Tiller.

              So I'd argue that lies and demagogy are not necessarily protected speech rather it's speech that we might challenge if it wasn't being spoken by officials and famous people. But that is a privilege they have in the 21st century.

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            • icon
              bhull242 (profile), 10 Nov 2020 @ 5:55am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

              Disinformation is not information.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:14am

          Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

          Who's censoring what? I'm sick of these unsupported bullshit claims.

          Why do you think that we should not count all the votes?

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        • identicon
          Rocky, 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:56am

          Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

          What "leftist censors"? Or are you just upset that some pointed out that Trump lied his ass off.

          You are arguing that lies should have an equal place in news as non-lies without anyone pointing out that they are lies. I guess that makes it easier to push a narrative not based on truth.

          Btw, when did pointing out lies become leftist? And what does that tell us about about you? Are you so far gone that you somehow think that lies has equal worth to truth and facts?

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          • icon
            Samuel Abram (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 1:09pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

            Btw, when did pointing out lies become leftist?

            When Stephen Colbert said that "Reality has a well-known liberal bias".

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            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 1:18pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

              When Trump convinced them that "fake news" means "stuff I don't like", rather than actual misinformation. Some people just aren't emotionally mature enough to accept hard truths.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Stephen T. Stone (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:26am

          Leftists censors are demanding that events not even be covered at all, such that individuals ought not be allowed to form their own opinion.

          …as opposed to conservatives, who have never demanded that people stop talking about certain events in our past or, in one rather recent case, demanded that a specific event critical to the politics of the United States not be allowed to happen~. Nope, that has never happened once~.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Toom1275 (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:48am

          Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

          [Projects facts not in evidence]

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:26am

      Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

      Sorry, I must have missed something. Who is calling for a Ministry of Truth?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:20am

        Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

        When ever some conservative gets called out on their bullshit, they get all spun up and start with the ridiculous accusations and demands, none of which make much sense. They all seem to be Karens.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 6:26am

        Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

        The guy who is supporting doublespeak from the President while opposing private citizens wanting to deny the use of their property to spread that propaganda, but has convinced himself he's somehow working against fascism.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      TFG, 4 Nov 2020 @ 7:48am

      Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

      Koby: Should we count all the votes or not?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:09am

        Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

        Koby: everyone should have complete freedom of speech because I believe in freedom and democracy!

        Also Koby: the President should be able to co-opt private property to spread disinformation about a democratic election in progress, in order to undermine the perceived validity of its eventual result, and the owners of that property should have no rights to counter the head of the government's usage of their property.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        TFG, 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:36am

        Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

        Since the other replies weren't from Koby, and I'm interested in the simple answer from Koby to the simple question, I'll ask it again in a separate thread.

        Koby: Should we count all the votes, or not?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 9:03am

          Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

          Just FYI, this is usually when he bails the thread until the next vaguely related thread he can spout the same nonsense on.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            TFG, 4 Nov 2020 @ 10:13am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

            The point is to make sure the question is asked and the fluff and nonsense is ignored. Ask the simple question with the simple answer at the heart of it all up front.

            Reject all attempts to divert the conversation and repeat the question if it remains unanswered. This leads to either getting a straight answer or getting them to stop talking. If you do it early enough, you avoid the headaches.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              That One Guy (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 12:01pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

              Fair, nothing shuts certain people up quite like a [Citation Needed].

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                TFG, 4 Nov 2020 @ 1:39pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instruct

                Eh, [Citation Needed] isn't all that effective. It's far too easily dismissed as a flippant response to a statement someone just doesn't agree with (and unfortunately I've seen it get used that way), and therefore brushed past. Take a look at what happens when it gets posted in these discussions; I've yet to see someone give a citation, and I've also yet to see it actually halt a bad faith argument.

                That's why I prefer the pointed, simple question.

                "Should we count all the votes, or not?"

                It's not a flippant dismissal, the way [Citation needed] can be cast; it's a question asking for an answer to enable discourse. The answer to the question opens the floor to more discussion and more questions...

                And if it goes unanswered, that is also an answer.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  That One Guy (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 2:04pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Inst

                  Hmm, you make a very good point there, I'll have to take that into consideration for the future.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Mike Masnick (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 9:53am

      Re: Orwell Books Were Warnings, Not Instructions

      Koby, the job of a reporter is to highlight what is true. That is not demanding a "Ministry of Truth." It's asking reporters to do their fucking job.

      Why are you so bad at this?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Uriel-238 (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 11:13am

      Minitrue

      The Ministry of Truth in Ingsoc used old fashioned propaganda techniques to disinform the proles.

      We're looking to develop institutions that assure viewers are informed about context, about statements that are false or misleading and what the facts are that inform the subject. In our fancy cyberpunk era, it'd be nice if checks on untruths popped up on the fly, and whenever an official misspoke, everyone's phone would make the qualifying-information-push alert-pop.

      We might even want three such institutions, so that when one disagrees with the others, we can analyze why there's a minority report.

      The funny thing is, we've had institutions like these to keep our officials informed. We defunded those so that Senator Kyl could say things #NotIntendedToBeAFactualStatement.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 5:29am

    Cue Trump demanding Section 230 be revoked once again...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:30am

    'I'm winning, stop counting.'

    Meanwhile, nearly every major TV station allowed Trump to give his speech directly, in which he falsely claimed that he had already won states where there were still many votes to be counted, insisted that the counting of votes must be stopped (and claiming he was going to ask the Supreme Court to stop the count), and suggesting that there was fraud going on in a few states that still had significant mail-in ballots to count (most of which they hadn't been able to count prior to yesterday because of Republican legislatures blocking that ability).

    Sometimes there is absolutely no enjoyment to be found in being right and having your expectations meet, but damn, he was sure as hell quick to roll out the final step in stealing the election, and in so doing make absolutely clear that he, his cult, and the GOP will throw democracy under the bus the second it might choose anyone but them.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 8:46am

      If someone in another country tried to pull that shit, it’d be considered a coup attempt. I see no reason to avoid calling it that because it happened in America.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Khym Chanur (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 9:18am

    Mail-in ballots after election day vs stop counting votes

    I think when Trump says "Votes cannot be cast after the Polls are closed" he's talking about mail-in ballots postmarked by election day but received after election day. Which is still bad, since that's state matter, and voters in states that allow it were depending upon "postmarked by election day" to be the deadline, but it's not as bad as "stop counting all ballots", which you're making it out to be.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 9:20am

      Re: Mail-in ballots after election day vs stop counting votes

      Funny how someone who uses the "best words" always needs someone else to chime in and explain what he really means....

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 9:24am

      Doesn’t really matter which it is if he’s trying to disenfranchise millions of voters across the country because they may hold the key to a Biden victory. It’s bullshit, it’s an attempted coup of the United States government, and it should be called as such.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 12:39pm

      Re: Mail-in ballots after election day vs stop counting votes

      "Which is still bad, since that's state matter, and voters in states that allow it were depending upon "postmarked by election day" to be the deadline, but it's not as bad as "stop counting all ballots", which you're making it out to be."

      No, it's worse. What you're saying is that voters who followed the rules of their election should have their votes discounted because the incumbent decided he didn't like election rules that might result in him losing - and that he's right to publicly spread the disinformation.

      Even ignoring the other things done by Trump to game the vote (such as forcing states to not count votes received weeks ago until the day of the election then complain they take too long, or installing a post office chief who immediately starts doing things to ensure votes aren't postmarked and/or delivered on time), he's attacking the very rules on which the election he is participating were agreed long before he started this race.

      That should be terrifying to anyone interested in an actual fair election. I can understand it from the guy who lost by 3 million votes last time only to get in via a quirk of the electoral college, and looks to have to do the same again if he's to somehow win this time, but what's your excuse?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Khym Chanur (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 2:26pm

        Re: Re: Mail-in ballots after election day vs stop counting vote

        What you're saying is that voters who followed the rules of their election should have their votes discounted

        I'm not saying that. Those votes should definitely be counted, and it's horrible that Trump is trying to get those votes thrown out. I'm just saying that Trump didn't say that all counting should cease at the end of election day.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 9:27pm

          Re: Re: Re: Mail-in ballots after election day vs stop counting

          Oh, but he did:

          https://eu.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/elections/2020/11/04/trump-files-lawsuit-stop-michi gan-vote-count-temporarily/6164647002/

          "The Trump campaign announced Wednesday it is pursuing court actions to stop ballot counting in Michigan and Pennsylvania"

          The above story is where he stopped using euphemisms to fool people into thinking that's not what he was demanding, but that's exactly what he's been trying to do. He knows he's in deep trouble at this point and has lost both the popular vote and (likely but not guaranteed at this point, I hope I don't jinx anything) the EC vote. So, he's trying to fall back on conspiracy theories he's been rambling on about for weeks, including the idea that votes that get counted more than a few hours after the election has finished must be fraudulent votes was were magically "found" somewhere, rather than them being naturally delayed count from larger population areas (which tend to swing D) in states that had been blocked from counting anything that's already received before election day until after the in person vote had ended.

          If you take his words literally as if they're honest takes then maybe you're right about what he did or didn't mean. But, after 4 years of this guy and decades of prior history acting the same way, do you really think anything the guy says at this point is honest or to be taken at face value?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Nov 2020 @ 4:24pm

    I expect Rupert of the Murdoch will be busy working out how to implement Plan B: Biden Wins Election and How to Suck Up to Him.

    And all across the land there was the sound a fragile ego cracking and a great whining and braying from the Orange Prince Precious.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 4 Nov 2020 @ 9:31pm

      Re:

      "I expect Rupert of the Murdoch will be busy working out how to implement Plan B: Biden Wins Election and How to Suck Up to Him."

      Are you kidding? A Biden win is a gold mine for him because the cult will stray even further from factual sources, and it will help stop the right wing turning against him and toward more insane sources like OANN because Fox hasn't been sucking up to Trump enough. There's a very good chance this will make him even more money than the Clinton and Obama years.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    SitecoreCertification, 5 Nov 2020 @ 4:17am

    How??

    all across the land there was the sound a fragile ego cracking and a great whining and braying from the Orange Prince Precious.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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