By this time, we have all gotten so much “Fake News” we can no longer tell it from the real thing. I am going to try to help you out a little bit. What, exactly, is “Fake” News?
Well, first of all, let’s decide what “news” is. Once upon a time, “news” was simply an account, or “story,” of some event based on all the relevant facts diligently collected by some reporter.
It took the form of, “Here is everything we could find out and verify about this event, make of it what you will.”
When people who published the “news” had an opinion about what it “meant” and either wished to share that with the audience or, more important, wanted their audience to adopt their opinion, they would “editorialize” about it.
They were fairly diligent in separating their “opinions” from the “news.”
“Fake” News actually began years ago when purveyors of “news” stopped doing this. It probably started right after World War II, but really ginned up in the Sixties during the Vietnam War.
It started when these “news” purveyors abandoned their role as faithful “observers” and “chroniclers” of human events and, instead, became “players,” seeking to shape human events by manipulating “public opinion.”
At first, American “Media” manipulated public opinion mainly to sell stuff, but by the Sixties they were full-on political, “opposing the War in Vietnam.”
The New York Times was in the vanguard back then. From Vietnam on, the “news” no longer began with an “event,” but with a “viewpoint.”
What appeared in the newspapers and magazines, and on television depended on the political or social “viewpoint” of the publishers and owners of the TV networks.
If some event supported or promoted that “viewpoint” in the Court of Public Opinion, it made the “News,” and vice versa. We’ve gone a lot further down the toilet since then.
Now, the “Media” make no pretense that their objective is anything other than manipulating public opinion.
With few exceptions, every time you open the newspaper, turn on the TV, surf the Internet or check your Facebook news feed, somebody is telling you what to think and probably lying to you to boot.
“Fake News” is a “story” consisting of innuendo and implication but unsupported by facts, OR a “story” supported by “selected” facts (“misinformation”).
OR it’s a “story” based on FALSE statements of fact, OR a “story” that is not even a “story” at all but an account of trivial facts claimed “to mean something” when they actually mean nothing at all.
Many such “stories” are often strung together to form a “narrative,” which is nothing more than a bill of goods the purveyors are trying to sell.
We’re now getting all of this 24 hours a day. And it is mainly coming from the Left. Why? Because all those draft dodgers from the Sixties now control the Media.
When I was a kid and would repeat gossip or hurtful statements to my mother, her first response was always, “consider the source.”
Well, considering the source, we now know that just about anything that comes out of CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, Politico, Moveon.org, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times and The Washington Post is “Fake News” of one type or the other.
By now, we are all too familiar with these Leftist “narratives,” which they shamelessly sell day in and day out to the exclusion of “real” news.
Regardless of the source, you should also have a healthy skepticism about any “story” promoting any viewpoints attributed to “European Leaders,” “Climate Change Scientists,” “University Professors” or any “Survey, Poll or Study.”
Remember, Mark Twain, quoting British Prime Minister Disraeli, told us, “There are three kinds of lies: lies; damned lies; and statistics.”