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July 11, 2017

The Anatomy of Fake News Wrapped in One Short Paragraph [Warden]

Most of you are aware that Donald Trump Jr released personal emails today pertaining to his meeting of a Russian contact who claimed to have dirt on Hillary Clinton.

Hack, left-wing digital rag, The Hill, wrote breathlessly about it today calling the emails "stunning." I'm not going to link that article because fuck The Hill. I was, however, struck by this paragraph in the middle of their story.

The revelation has shaken the White House, which for months has struggled to contain the fallout from a wide-ranging investigation into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

Now there's an interesting series of words, full of all kinds of insinuation intended to lead unaware readers to particular conclusions. Let's break this down.

The revelation has shaken the White House

It has? How? In what way? Who told you? Wait, you don't have a source for this? Not even an unnamed one?

Okay. So the writer just threw that in there. Good journalism.

which for months has struggled to contain the fallout from a wide-ranging investigation

What fallout? Was someone indicted? Convicted?

Oh, by fallout you mean all the stories journalists have written about this based on a pee party dossier ginned up by Russian operatives working for Hillary Clinton?

And this "wide ranging investigation," what does that cover, exactly? What leads are investigators chasing?

Oh, no details? I see. So, wide ranging is in there just to imply that this is super serious stuff and there's gotta be something to all of this.

into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential election

What kind of meddling? What did they do? Can you prove it or shouldn't this read alleged meddling? Meddling is kind of an imprecise word, isn't it? It covers an awful lot of ground, most of it not necessarily illegal. Without further detail, and there is none, the word literally has no concrete meaning.

And so there you have it. A series of vague, non-sourced, non-evidenced statements mashed together into one stinking pile of obliquely implied wrongdoing.

This is #FakeNews from top to bottom. This is how they do it.

But they aren't getting away with it any longer, are they? People are wise to the game and the trust that they lost will never be regained.

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posted by Open Blogger at 09:05 PM

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