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Confronting "Alternative Facts"


#1

Confronting "Alternative Facts"

Rebecca Gordon

In one of the Bible stories about the death of Jesus, local collaborators with the Roman Empire haul him before Pontius Pilate, the imperial governor of Palestine. Although the situation is dire for one of them, the two engage in a bit of epistemological banter. Jesus allows that his work is about telling the truth and Pilate responds with his show-stopping query: “What is truth?”


#2

“A National Emergency exists at our southern border…” is perhaps Trump’s greatest alternative fact.

If, he commits that atrocity, that will also be one of his greatest abuses of presidential power.

“Agreed, Mr. Mueller?”


#3

The GOP was considering staging a “national emergency” to suspend the 2008 election if the Democrats nominated a progressive. With Obama signaling that he would not prosecute GOP war crimes and would usher in Dubya’s third term, those plans were shelved…until the GOP just gave Trump the “national emergency” card to test out on his wall fetish. The GOP’s end game is to contrive a “national emergency” in 2020 to justify suspending the 2020 POTUS election in order to solidify their coup.


#4

Gordon sez:
"Jesus allows that his work is about telling the truth and Pilate responds with his show-stopping query: ‘What is truth?’”

I understand Rudy Giuliani is being sought to play Pilate in the movie.


#5

I do not believe an election would be suspended. Already there are lawsuits from unions because working and not being paid is against the constitution. Of course they continue to move the goal posts in relation to the constitution.


#6

Excellent article, Ms. Gordon! Funny how it garnered so few comments…


#7

the dirty secret is that virtually all public discourse is subject to wholly invented narrative. Democrats have caught up with Republican in terms of mind-f**king their faithful, and, in some ways, have surpassed them.

One reason that political fact-checking is such an odious enterprise–even when performed by people with the best of intentions–is that truth requires a baseline of measurement which lies can be compared to. In other words, you can’t judge something a lie unless you know what the truth is. And in politics these days, that’s become astonishingly difficult. Republicans have been lying like rugs for years. Democrats are lying as hard as any liar has ever lied right now. The Russian propaganda campaign has been an eye-opener for me as a former intelligence analyst because when it first started, my instinct was, “no way this works. liberals might be fatuous little shitweasels, but they’re not stupid.” And it worked. Easily. Against every standard of basic critical thought, it worked. Because the targets of the campaign needed it to be true. Anything to explain how their otherwise unassailable judgment was not shared by so much of the country. Or that their rank incompetence was exposed.

You can confront so-called “fake news” all you want. But to do it, you had better know what the facts on the ground most likely are, and most people don’t. Because almost all of them are relying on purveyors of “fake news” for their truth, too.