During Monday’s press conference, President Biden revealed how weakly he is responding to the real threat of cyberwarfare – and how he fundamentally misunderstands what we are up against.
Speaking on CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday, Republican Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania offered a now-familiar complaint about efforts to investigate the January
He earned his nickname after a television appearance
From the moment our parents allow us to sit in front of a television screen or listen to a radio, we are inundated almost continuously with advertisements trying to sell us various products. And during campaigns for elective offices, campaign managers and their staffs try and sell us on the virtues of the candidates they support or the vices of their opponents. The information we receive about both products and people may be valid, partially true, or false and it is usually difficult to differentiate. To capture our attention and obtain our votes for a candidate or a product, exaggerations or bald-faced lies may be utilized. And these may be repeated over and over again. Social media and the Internet reinforce false news by often allowing it to be repeated.
Use so and so for beautiful skin. Use so and so to improve your memory. Use so and so to improve your sex life. Use so and so for lustrous hair.
As difficult as it is for adults to discern what is true and what is false or exaggerated on TV, it is impossible for a child. Thus, children as they grow up start believing what they see on television or hear on the radio. Information that adults may question is accepted as true by youngsters because they saw or heard it repeatedly. This also happens with the news or with speeches given by politicians. Because of their lifetime exposure to advertising, many people in our nation cannot tell what information is real and what is fake. Politicians take advantage of this inability by propagating fake news which many Americans believe. This allows them to propose policies that mainly benefit the affluent people who fund them, though their ordinary constituents also think it helps them.
The biggest proponents of fake news have been Donald Trump and the Republican Party, pushing the theme that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from Trump. Republican politicians know this is a lie but continue to repeat this fiction, convincing their base that it is true and retaining the support of Trump. In a major disservice to the nation, many Republicans also have declared that the Covid vaccine is dangerous and that people should not be vaccinated. And large numbers of ignorant Americans have not received the protection of the Covid vaccination because they have believed those who claim it is dangerous, leaving themselves and their families unprotected against the virus. Americans have also been told that global warming is not real and nothing has to be done about it.
In addition to exposure to TV advertising of questionable validity, many of those who accept fake news never investigate information that may be questionable, but just accept it because it sounds credible and is from a media source that they trust. And besides, their friends and neighbors accept the information as true. However, a large proportion of Americans are misinformed or uninformed about news or politics and cannot be trusted to validate what is true or not. Whether advertising or supposed news, American citizens have to be more suspicious about what they see and hear and investigate whether or not it is true. www.robertlevinebooks.com Buy The Uninformed Voter on Amazon or Barnes and Noble
Photo 126827446 / Fake News © Melpomenem | Dreamstime.com
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Tags: advertising, Donald Trump, fake news, global warming, Republican Party, stolen election, vaccinations
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has rejected two of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s five nominations for the committee investigating the Capitol riots that attempted to stop the counting of the Electoral College vote, Jim Banks (R-Ind.) and Jim Jordan (R-Ohio). McCarthy responded by withdrawing the other three Republicans from the commission. The reactions to this news are, not surprisingly, bifurcated.
[UPDATE: Despite the two pieces below, it appears Liz Cheney intends to remain on the committee in defiance of McCarthy. If she does, there is talk of stripping her of her committee assignments and membership in the caucus. So, even if she does, the committee would effectively be all-Democratic—or at least lack any Republicans in good standing.]
WaPo columnists Greg Sargent and Paul Waldman (“How Kevin McCarthy is boosting the integrity of the Jan. 6 investigation“) are pleased.
We should be thankful that House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) just pulled Republicans out of any involvement in the select committee to examine the Jan. 6 insurrection. In so doing, he ensured that the committee’s investigation will both have more integrity and be more likely to undertake a valuable accounting.
Which goes to a larger truth about this moment: Efforts at a real examination of arguably the worst outbreak of political violence in modern times — and efforts to protect our democracy more broadly — will not be bipartisan. These things will be done by Democrats alone.[…]
McCarthy mustered great outrage about this, railing that it was an “abuse of power” that had cost the committee “all legitimacy and credibility.”
In fact, precisely the opposite is true: By pulling out, McCarthy has boosted the committee’s legitimacy and credibility immeasurably. The less involved McCarthy is with this committee, the more likely it will be to undertake a genuine and comprehensive accounting.
McCarthy’s picks were expressly designed to prevent that accounting. This is not speculation or a mere guess at McCarthy’s motives. It is unavoidably clear from the public statements and conduct of Banks and Jordan themselves.
CNN’s Chris Cillizza (“Nancy Pelosi just doomed the already tiny chances of the 1/6 committee actually mattering“) takes the opposite view:
If you ever held any hope that the House select committee on the January 6 US Capitol riot might produce a report that would help us understand what happened in the lead-up to that day and, in so doing, provide us avenues to keeping it from happening again, you should give up on those hopes now.[…]
No matter Pelosi’s reasoning, her decision to reject Jordan and Banks, the two most high-profile Republicans put forward by McCarthy, dooms even the possibility of the committee being perceived as bipartisan or its eventual findings being seen as independent.
Pelosi and her Democratic defenders will cast the decision as the only one she really had available to her after McCarthy made his picks known earlier this week.And it’s beyond debate that McCarthy’s choices — especially Banks and Jordan — were aimed at turning the committee into something of a circus. Both men would have, at every turn, sought to turn the tables on Democrats — using the platform provided by the committee to push debunked claims about Antifa’s involvement in the Capitol riot, questioning Democratic leadership’s readiness for just such an attack and trying to broaden the committee’s mandate to cover the Black Lives Matter protests of summer 2020.Knowing this, Pelosi’s move is rightly understood as robbing Republicans of that platform. But it also dooms the committee — before it even holds a single hearing or meeting.
The problem with both arguments is that they assume the committee had any hope of coming up with a comprehensive picture of the events of that day that will be perceived as legitimate. If one holds that assumption, I don’t see how Pelosi had any choice. Banks and, especially, Jordan are clowns who have made no bones about their contempt for the process or the truth. McCarthy’s selection of them was a big Fuck You to the investigation and received the response he had to know was coming.
Given that former President Trump is the de facto target of the investigation and that it is coming in a Democratic-led House, it is going to be seen by his supporters as a partisan witch hunt. Given that Republicans overwhelmingly still support him, with a majority believing that the election was stolen from him, persuading them of his culpability is a lost cause.
Theoretically, at least, the investigation could at least provide those interested in the truth a better picture of what happened. But I’m skeptical we’ll learn much useful that we don’t already know. Congress has subpoena power, of course, but unless they’re going to provide immunity from criminal and civil liability, we’re likely to see a string of people invoking their 5th Amendment rights.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced Sunday she has appointed GOP Rep. Adam Kinzinger to the House select committee to investigate the January 6 attack on the US Capitol.
“Today, I am announcing the appointment of Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger, an Air Force veteran and Lieutenant Colonel in the Air National Guard, to serve on the Select Committee,” she said in a statement. “He brings great patriotism to the Committee’s mission: to find the facts and protect our Democracy.”
Kinzinger, a vocal Republican critic of former President Donald Trump who was one of 10 House Republicans to vote for his second impeachment, is joining Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming as the only Republicans on the new select committee.
I have no illusions that this will make pro-Trump Republicans happy or lead to some broad acceptance of the findings of the investigation.
Nonetheless, it is a positive move, as Kinzginer is certainly a far more serious member of the Republican caucus than, say, Jim Jordan.
McCarthy now has some choices to make in regards to both Kinzinger and Cheney.
Rep. Nancy Mace, S.C., talks about sponsoring the ‘FREE Act,’ which seeks to protect the rights of 1.3 million Americans under conservatorship, including pop star Britney Spears.
Fox News’ Howard Kurtz Defends Network’s Vaccine Coverage Amid Criticism: ‘Fox’s Rivals Are in a Frenzy’
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Fox News’ Howard Kurtz opened Sunday’s MediaBuzz by directly addressing the criticism Fox has gotten for its vaccine coverage.
Kurtz said “it makes for a great liberal narrative” to say that vaccine hesitancy “is the fault of right-wing media.”
“Fox’s rivals are in a frenzy about blaming this network,” he continued. “But there are a lot of voices on Fox News Channel and many, including me, including the anchors who just made a second pro-vaccination PSA, want the tens of millions of holdouts to get the covid shots, and that includes these conservative hosts.”
He showed clips of Steve Doocy and Sean Hannity making direct appeals to their viewers. Doocy — who has encouraged vaccines for the past few months — again implored viewers to get the shot this past week.
As for Hannity, the Fox primetime host received some plaudits for telling viewers to “take covid seriously” and consult with their doctors. During that same show he questioned universities mandating the vaccine “regardless of even whether [students] have natural immunity.” He followed up by saying, “I never told anyone to get a vaccine. I’ve been very clear. I am simply not qualified. I am not a medical doctor. I know nothing about your medical history or your current medical condition. I think it’s inappropriate for me to do so,” reiterating people should speak with their doctors.
4- Then you in consultation with your Dr need to make the right decision for you and your family.
I am not a Dr, and I have steadfastly refused to play one on radio or TV and tell people what decision to make….
— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) July 24, 2021
There have, of course, been very notable anti-vaccine comments on Fox News, including from primetime hosts Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham. Carlson continued raising questions about the vaccines last week after some of his colleagues strongly encouraged them.
“There are an awful lot of people, many on the right, who are either hesitant or outright refusing to get these life-saving vaccines,” Kurtz said. “That would be true if Fox went off the air tomorrow. Overcoming their fears and doubts is a complicated problem for the Biden White House and all the vitriolic finger-pointing isn’t helping one bit.”
During the panel discussion, Ben Domenech claimed that “what I see on the right is overwhelming unanimity among the political class and among the media class as well that these vaccines are good, and to the degree there’s skepticism, it tends to be about should children be vaccinated or is that something that’s necessary in order to go back to school and the like as opposed to doubting the vaccines or saying there’s some overwhelming danger from taking them.”
Fox Business anchor Liz Claman pushed back as she said, “I really have to disagree with Ben on what he said regarding unanimity within the Republican party or conservative voices.”
When Kurtz brought up vaccine opposition from people like Marjorie Taylor Greene, Domenech said, “When I say near-unanimity, I think it leaves out people like Marjorie Taylor Greene.”
At one point Claman emphasized the importance of vaccines, bringing up family members of hers who are medical professionals and saying, “I’m very pro-science here.”
You can watch above, via Fox News.
The post Fox News’ Howard Kurtz Defends Network’s Vaccine Coverage Amid Criticism: ‘Fox’s Rivals Are in a Frenzy’ first appeared on Mediaite.
Laredo Sector Border Patrol agents rescued a lost migrant who illegally crossed the border from Mexico on July 21. The migrant called 911 for assistance after running out of water.
Venture capitalist and Senate candidate Blake Masters said on this week’s broadcast of Fox News Channel’s “Sunday Morning Futures” that if Democrats won in the 2022 midterm elections, then “we lose the country forever.”