Fake News

I’m looking after my brother’s house and cat for a few days this week, and so getting a reminder of what TV is like. As far as I could see, it was mostly quiz shows, Celebrity Come Dancing, and something called the Great British Bake-Off, which I suppose is some sort of cooking competition. Nothing that I might want to watch.

I wondered if the news reports might be more interesting, and so watched BBC5 5 pm news. This led with a report on fixed-odds gambling machines, and how some people had lost everything to them. A middle-aged man said he’d contemplated suicide.

I vaguely wondered what was so newsworthy about this that it should be the lead item in the news, and wondered whether the main BBC1 6 pm news would lead on something more newsworthy. It didn’t. It had the same fixed-odds gambling story, and the same middle-aged man, who I’d begun to wonder might be an actor.

Then I watched Channel 4 news at 7 pm, wondering if they’d lead on the same story too.  They didn’t. Instead they led on US reports that Paul Manafort, who’d once been Donald Trump’s campaign manager, had been indicted on charges of money laundering by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who is supposed to be investigating Trump’s supposed links to Russia.

I was a bit puzzled that this story was leading on a British news channel. It’s been big “news” in the US mainstream media, and is actually a non-story, because the indictments relate to a period when Manafort was doing some work for someone in Ukraine about 10 years ago. It had nothing to do with Trump or Russia whatsoever, and the long report, which included a reporter breathlessly interviewing people with the White House in distant view, was honest enough to point out at the very end that the indictments didn’t mention either Trump or Russia.

The report didn’t mention the involvement of Tony Podesta in the same story. And Tony Podesta is the brother of John Podesta, who was Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman. So actually this story distantly involves both the Trump and Clinton campaigns. But you wouldn’t have known that from from the Channel 4 news report.

So as far as I could see, all the UK news channels were running “news” stories that weren’t really news at all, at least not for anyone in the UK. I wondered if it might have just been a slow news day, and so checked my brother’s newspaper this morning, to see whether it was going to report on the gambling machines and Paul Manafort as well. But its front page news was about multiple allegations of groping – and even rape – by UK politicians, including cabinet ministers. That was a much juicier story than gambling machines or Manafort. Why hadn’t BBC and Channel 4 led with that?

Also last night I watched a bit of Alex Jones on Infowars.com. And they had an even hotter story, which was that there had been multiple aircraft – most likely helicopters – involved in the Las Vegas shooting, with muzzle flashes seen in the sky, and armed men in the nearby airport. They were showing radar images of aircraft movements that night. They said that police, FBI, etc, still really had no idea exactly what had happened, but it had involved multiple shooters in multiple locations. And nobody had seen muzzle flashes coming from Stephen Paddock’s suite. Was Paddock a patsy, I found myself wondering.

I’ll be interested to see what BBC and Channel 4 news lead with tonight. Given last night’s showing, I suspect it’s going to be more non-news or fake news. And I wonder whether there is going to be anything other than quiz-cookery-dance shows the rest of the evening.

I can see why Alex Jones’ Infowars has acquired a big following: it’s much more interesting than anything else. It also carried a cartoon that pretty much suumarised what I’d been thinking:

The idea seems to be to keep the news focus on Trump, and away from anybody else (like Hillary Clinton). Quite why that policy should extend to the UK mainstream media, I don’t know.

And what about a few other stories that could have been lead news items. Such as: Did Hitler fake his death and if so, where did he go? Or: Madagascar plague is spreading because relatives are digging up their Black Death corpses and DANCING with them or maybe even: Suspect Identified In NYC Terror Attack That Left 8 Dead; Pled Allegiance To ISIS

There’s plenty to choose from.

About Frank Davis

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27 Responses to Fake News

  1. smofunking says:

    Another “news” item from yesterday was about how it was the moral duty of supermarkets to only offer healthy meal deals lest somebody make the “wrong” choice. Some cuntfuck (aka Graham MacGregor) from Action on Sugar, made it perfectly clear that hoi polloi haven’t got a clue what they’re doing and someone needs to step in and force them in the right direction.


    I can honestly say that I have never said “Fuck off” to a TV screen so often in such a short space of time before.

  2. buckothemoose says:

    Alex Jones: Bloody good for entertainment, but be wary of getting suckered into the conspiracy theories

  3. Rose says:

    Real news, it’s the Lancashire train sex pest again, this time at the Supreme Court.

    Blackburn sex offender fighting at the UK’s highest court to make smoking in jail a criminal offence

    “A SEX OFFENDER from Blackburn concerned about his exposure to “second-hand” smoke in prison is fighting at the UK’s highest court to make illicit lighting up in jails a criminal offence.
    Repeat pervert Paul Black, who suffers from a range of serious health problems, has taken his case to the Supreme Court in a bid to win what he says is the same level of protection from the risks posed by passive smoking as “non-smokers living in the wider community”.
    The proceedings in London before a panel of five justices, headed by the court’s president Lady Hale, follow his defeat at the Court of Appeal last year. A verdict is expected today.

    The case centres on the 2006 Health Act which places restrictions on smoking in public places and workplaces, making it a criminal offence to smoke in an unauthorised place and also an offence for those in charge of the premises to turn a blind eye to the smoking.
    Black, an inmate at HMP Wymott in Lancashire, originally won a High Court declaration in 2015 that the legal ban on smoking in public places under that Act must also be applied to state prisons and other Crown premises in England and Wales.
    But appeal judges later allowed a Government challenge against that decision, ruling that the Crown was not bound by the Act and the ban, which came into force in July 2007, did not apply in public sector prisons.

    The Supreme Court is now being asked to decide whether the Court of Appeal reached the correct findings.

    In 2007, Black, then 48 and of Preston New Road, was given an indeterminate sentence after carrying out a sex act on a train from York to Burnley.
    He also has several previous convictions for violent and sexual assault, including the rape of a 14-year-old girl from Blackburn, and the rape of an 18-year-old girl in Rossendale.
    However, he cannot be released on licence from HMP Wymott, a category C prison near Leyland, until the Parole Board decides he is no longer a danger to the public. ”

    • nisakiman says:

      He sounds like an arsehole in every respect. He probably needs special protection too, because I’m sure the other inmates won’t be too happy about what he’s doing.

      • Rose says:

        This notorious pervert had also been wanting anonymous and confidential access to the NHS freephone, allegedly to report violations.
        The NHS call handlers will be mightly relieved that that bit seems to have been dropped.

        “Black had also argued that prisoners were legally entitled to anonymous and confidential access to the NHS freephone smoke-free compliance line to report infringements of the rules.”

      • smokingscot says:

        All they need to do is geld the swine. Then he’ll no longer be a danger to the public and can be released.

        Too much hassle to do this – and it won’t change anything, but I’d love to know who is paying lawyers to bring these cases to court. It won’t be him, so perhaps it’s us taxpayers. Or would ASH and their lot be quietly funding the whole thing.

        • beobrigitte says:

          I’m really not into conspiracy theories – I have seen too often that fact can be stranger than fiction, often accompanied by illogical circumstances.
          Or would ASH and their lot be quietly funding the whole thing.
          I don’t believe that although I would not put it past ASH. Human dignity means nothing to them. They want to kill all things tobacco.

          As for the Blackburn prisoner; the guy is a repeat offender rapist. Up here in the north his fellow prisoners will not have treated him kindly for that. One of my offspring’s father’s relatives worked in the prison services and sex offenders – especially rapists – are subject to inmate special treatments.
          Clearly he is looking for protection – yet he is winding up his fellow prisoners even more?
          I really wouldn’t put it past ASH …..

        • smokingscot says:

          Many thanks Rose. The smoking gun.

          Should they succeed in making it a CRIMINAL OFFENCE to smoke in a prison then that precedent can be used in other institutions. I’m thinking hospice, hospitals and in due course social and multi occupancy.

          Good use of a pervert.

    • jaxthefirst says:

      ” … the Act does not bind the Crown – meaning that a local authority could play no role in enforcing the ban in the state-run prison.”

      Not sure I understand that bit. Is that really true? I know that royal palaces (e.g. Palace of Westminster, Buck House etc) were exempt, but does this mean that any establishment which is state-run (e.g. state schools, civil service offices, prisons etc) can also be exempt if they choose? Surely they haven’t all banned smoking purely through choice? I thought the whole basis for smoking still being permitted in prison cells were by virtue of their being regarded as people’s “homes,” much like hotels can permit smoking in bedrooms if they choose (although most of them don’t), and that smoking in communal areas was not allowed except outside, just like any other workplace. And what about local authorities playing “no role in enforcing the ban?” I thought it was the job of local authority environmental officers to do precisely that. Or have I got that wrong? Can anyone clarify for me?

  4. Joe L. says:

    Within 12 hours of the NYC terror attack yesterday, the public was provided with a fairly clear picture of the suspect, his motive, and video footage of the suspect shortly after the attack.

    Conversely, today marks the one-month anniversary of the Las Vegas attack, the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history, and yet we still don’t have a conclusive timeline of the events that evening.

    In fact, they’re now claiming that an officer “accidentally” fired a shot in Paddock’s suite, even though the LVMPD, in one of their early press conferences, claimed officers did not fire any shots. How this story can continue to get murkier, yet practically be ignored by the mainstream media is beyond me.

    • nisakiman says:

      I would guess that someone has has a word in the ear(s) of the press barons and told them not to pursue the story.

      I’m not given to conspiracy theories, but I can’t think of any other reason it’s all gone so quiet on the Las Vegas shooting story. And there are so many unanswered questions, so many conflicting reports, so much stonewalling that I can’t help but think that there’s some kind of big cover-up in play. But why? I can’t make any sense out of it.

  5. Dmitri says:

    I begat to work in\with the media in 1970-s, as a student. At that time the people who worked there were intellectual giants, some with doctorates, and they laid stress on quality and intellect, even when addressing simple folks. The 80-s were a real gala of reason. And after that all I see is yet another team of media managers telling people that we, the dummies, work for the dummies. We are entering the new Dark Age, and corporations think that’s the way to dump their products on us. Our anti-smoking adversaries use that reality with skill.

  6. beobrigitte says:

    I am surprised this one did not make the headlines!
    Yersinia pestis (the plague causing bacteria) does survive in soil for about a month and anybody digging up a body buried a week or so prior to the festival stands a good chance coming in contact with the bacterium.
    The country’s health chief Willy Randriamarotia said: ‘If a person dies of pneumonic plague and is then interred in a tomb that is subsequently opened for a Famadihana, the bacteria can still be transmitted and contaminate whoever handles the body’
    In this case The Sun is actually right! One can only hope that the festival goers are smokers. All of them. Nicotine has antibacterial properties!!

    Where is our WHO? Busy with non-transmittable “diseases”, such as smoking/vaping/snus/chewing tobacco etc?
    Oh, the WHO did say something:
    The nine countries the WHO has warned of being at risk are:

    South Africa

    And WHAT exactly is the WHO doing about it?

  7. Vinny Gracchus says:

    Fake news in a form of propaganda used to manipulate the public and political process. The current situation where tobacco control (and its new partner lifestyle control) is a classic case of propaganda/agitprop being used to shape a desired political outcome.

    A current case of manipulating the masses is seen in the case of a Japanese firm giving non-smokers more leave than smokers. Of course this ‘development’ is trumpeted far and wide via the media. In one case at The Telegram the article (agitprop) actually features a poll worded in the manner that suggests the antismoker response. Check the article and poll out at “Non-smokers get six days extra paid leave to make up for smokers’ cigarette breaks at Japanese firm” http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2017/10/30/non-smokers-get-six-days-extra-paid-leave-make-smokers-cigarette/

    The use of media to manipulate perception and drive a political and increasingly ‘marketing’ agenda for corporate profit resembles the fictional case of ‘Satellite Five’ in Dr Who. During the period of the Ninth Doctor the Satellite went online to broadcast nonstop ‘news’ content. Of course the news content initially consisted of ‘fake news’ and was then replaced with ‘reality games shows used to manipulate the public…

    The Tardis wiki describes it as follows:

    “Satellite Five went online in 199,909 during the Fourth Great and Bountiful Human Empire. It was responsible for broadcasting six hundred channels of constant news reports throughout the Empire. Personnel gathered, wrote, packaged and sold the news, sorted using brain chip technology.”

    “In the year 200,000, the Ninth Doctor, Rose and Adam materialised on floor 139 and found humanity was being manipulated by an unknown entity. They discovered that the Jagrafess was subtly manipulating the Empire, changing its social, economic and technological growth and making it more inward-looking and xenophobic. The human race had been reduced to slavery without realising it.”

    Truth is stranger than fiction… In this story line the Jagrafess and then the Daleks were pulling the strings. In our ‘reality’ we have Tobacco Control and their lifestyle control partners funded by Pharma trying to impose the smoke free, vape free, sugar free, meat free, alcohol free, vegan ‘First Great and Bountiful Human Empire’…

    • beobrigitte says:

      “Non-smokers get six days extra paid leave to make up for smokers’ cigarette breaks at Japanese firm”
      Fine. I do hope the smokers begin to take these claimed extra, paid, cigarette breaks. All 6 days worth.
      In real work life smokers can only go to smoke during their designated breaks. Anybody who can go for a smoke when he/she wants is either in great employment, self employed or in management.

  8. waltc says:

    FTR, the news we get here isn’t any less biased or cherry picked. The most reliable source is Fox’s Special Report which I think you can watch online. Also on Fox, Tucker Carlson, who’s frankly editorial, can restore your sanity after a bout with CNN or the mainstream press. But Alex Jones is too far into woo-woo to pay serious attention to. (Were the helicopters black? Were they really flying saucers?). OTOH, the lack of information and the bungling in Vegas construct the kind of vacuum human nature abhors and will fill with a dark, entertaining fantasy. I have no idea what went down in Vegas (ironic how their travelogue slogan has been “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas”) but, aside from Islamists, I can see no other organization or force who would possibly benefit from slaughtering Americans let alone merit a blanket cover-up from both the law and the press.

    As of now, the media’s last best hope lies not in Manafort but in this guy Pappadopoulous (sp?) –an unpaid volunteer for the campaign for a month–who was got for perjury which seems to have involved his lying–not about his contacts with the Russians, but the dates of those contacts. Of facts I’ve been able to tentatively glean, the contacts were apparently initiated by the Russians to the effect thst Putin or others in the Kremlin wanted to meet with Trump before the election to sound out his opinions. There’s as yet no evidence that Trump was even made aware of this wish (which was never fulfilled) but in any case even if he’d actually met them it would not have been “collusion to affect the election” . IIRC, many candidates have met with foreign leaders in the runup to elections.

    No, I was not jogging on a downtown bike path yesterday. (Thank you for asking.) But again, much of the media was initially reluctant to blame it on a Muslim, until he made it impossible for them to deny it by leaving a few notes proclaiming that he did it for love of ISIS. I am now way past patience with “lone wolf” theorists, as I am with “thoughts and prayers,” pious cautions against “backlash,” and “we’ll win this by carrying on with our lives and defiantly showing them our pluck and spirit” because, no, they don’t give a fuck about our pluck, and our attending another concert or browsing another mall does nothing to defeat them. And of course we’ll “carry on” because we don’t have a choice, because, homeostatically, we soon get amnesia and revert to Normal, but, if anything, it just gives them more soft targets.

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