American Elephants


“Fake News”, Poison Pen, and “Journalism” Today by The Elephant's Child

Here is an article I ran across this morning from The New York Times that is a perfect example of the loony “resistance.” If you want an example of why the president tweets about “fake news”, here you go. Ideally, I would love to see you print it out, take a red pencil, and underline each word and phrase that is poisonously partisan, false, slanted or just plain untrue.  So and so “are said to be thinking”— oh yeah? Who said they “are said”? “Last week, Mr Kelly told senators that the White House was “a miserable place to work”— so what? Many people have said or thought that about their workplace many times when exasperated without it being front page news for the NYT. Sometimes work is hard. That’s why they call it “work.”

Anything that can be phrased to carry a negative connotation is. Anything that can be described in a way unflattering to the President is. The entire article is a perfect example of the poisonous possibilities of the pen—how can you attempt to demonize with every word, every unsourced statement, and snide assumption, and still be considered “a reporter.” I almost never read anything  in the NYT, but occasionally read the headlines to see if anything has changed. But for East Coast lefties—this is what is happening, and what is real. And this is what the President must face every day. That he only responds by calling some of it “fake news” is really quite amazing.

Donald Trump was considered unfit for the presidency by many, who thought of him as a reality TV star. He did do that for fun for a while. Yet we consider a House or Senate term as an excellent qualification for office. So they voted Yea or Nay a number of times and sat through speeches and hearings and contributed what? In Hillary’s case, I read that her only bill during her term in the senate was to name a new Post Office.

Mr.Trump, on the other hand, built things in New York City and environs, doing battle with zoning bureaucrats, regulators, councilmen, lawyers, unions, mob bosses, city councils,  accountants, environmentalists, traffic regulators, pages and pages of regulations, state officials, and who knows what else, and still managed to get things built and make money at it. Sounds like a fairly good course in doing government, but of course doesn’t rate the approval of those who consider him not quite their class, with orange hair and too tanned complexion, and someone who speaks like a person in the construction trades from Queens.

If you did the red pencil thing, or not, now watch the Victor Davis Hanson speech, and think about today’s world. President Trump has surpassed 3% growth, some are expecting it to hit 4% soon. Black unemployment is at the lowest rate ever, and white unemployment is decreasing as well. Business is growing with tax relief and the removal of unnecessary and expensive regulations. The list of accomplishments is growing daily in spite of all the attacks. Tom Steyer is still out there spending millions to try to get the President impeached. And the slowly unwinding story of collusion and Russia and the CIA, Justice, the FBI, the Intelligence Committees of House and Senate, continue to reveal the seamier side of government.

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Sharyl Attkisson: All About Fake News! Is it Real? by The Elephant's Child

Here’s Sharyl Attkisson giving a ‘TED Talk’ at the University of Nevada, on the matter of “fake news.” There’s no one better to explain just what the problem is, and why it is a problem. She has had her own battles with truth in journalism, and emerged triumphant.

We depend on the national news media to give us factual, current news. It increasingly seems that reporters have little acquaintance with history, and little understanding of the traditional role of journalism in a free country. Fortunately, the new media allows us to be our own fact checkers. It’s more work for us, but we can track down the truth, if we make the effort.



Why The Talk of “Fake News”? Here’s Why: by The Elephant's Child

Here’s a devastating compilation of the Fake News Media on the attack put together by the Free Beacon’s Andrew Kugle, who tweeted that he had six minutes of more outtakes that he had to cut from this compilation. Instapundit describes it as an “embarrassment of riches.”

Then there’s the Democrat media’s fantastically defensive commentary about Hillary’s collapse when returning to her limousine, or having to be helped up the stairs. Funny.

And then there were all of those coughing fits, which the doctor announced were caused by dehydration which had been treated (drink some water) and pneumonia because she is unsteady on her feet and collapses?

Sometimes you don’t notice when you just see one or two examples, but when there are dozens compiled—it’s a different matter entirely. Funny.

 



Fake News and the Hunger for Information by The Elephant's Child

Johannes Gutenberg is widely credited with the invention of the first printing press in 1455. However Chinese monks had been using block prints even earlier, by A.D, 600, and there were attempts to create type as a means of conveying information. Too many characters in the Chinese language, and conveying important messages with blockprints didn’t really go anywhere.

The first newspaper in America was Public Occurrences, Both Foreign and Domestic, and the first (and last) issue was published in 1690. The 1st Amendment to the Constitution says “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom…of the press.” The Constitution establishes a government with three branches, but it does not establish a press or a media. What it does do is try to prohibit the government from trying to control what people say in the press or outside the press. Free speech.

It’s more useful to think about the way news was disseminated before there were a wide range of newspapers and subscriptions. Try to imagine a town crier, shouting out news of marriages, births and big events as he strolls around the town. People depended on riders to convey the news from one town to another. News of war and the battlefield had to wait until a rider could be sent back to town, and farmers and small communities were out of luck until someone happened by.

Illustrated news came to be long before photographs were invented, and depended on artists who could make reproducible engravings or blockprints. Americans yearned for news of the old country, but had to wait until a ship came in. Gold was discovered in California in January of 1848, but it wasn’t until December that the first rumors reached New York. Sailing ship going around the horn — the Panama Canal did not yet exist.

Samuel Morse invented the telegraph in 1844, and Morse code, but it wasn’t until 1860 that a bill was passed in Congress to authorize the telegraph to be built across the continent. They built from each coast with fascinating stories of Indians, the pony express, and the trans-continental line was completed on October 24th, 1862, linking the continent.

So here we are with “Fake News” and a profession is disrepute. The telegraph was followed by the telephone, the Atlantic Cable, photography, radio, movies, recordings, sailing ships were replaced by steam, the Panama Canal was built. Wars intervened, and news from the battlefield, but the front lines had to communicate with Division headquarters, and the medics, so there were runners. Then there were walkie-talkies. Each improvement in communication meant changes in the way things were done. Lives were saved.

With the advent of television, everyone said it was a great step forward, the American people would watch symphonies, the best of the New York stage, lectures, history. Uh huh.  They thought the same thing when we first got computers. You can watch porn online, and pretend comedians holding up an efigy of the head of a newly elected president. A goodly percentage of the people do not pay any attention to the news, and are open to the most partisan claims because they don’t understand what is happening. Cell phones, and people get mowed down on the street because they are paying attention to their phone instead of where they are going, and ditto for cars.

Victor Davis Hanson writes on the Media Meltdown between 2008 and 2016 at the Hoover Institution’s ‘Defining Ideas,’ and how it all happened. We are being manipulated by a partisan media, and the Left is capitalizing on focus-tested vocabulary and pictures to influence the unwitting—and unfortunately all of us are unwitting at least part of the time. I emphasize “the Left,” but of course the Right tries to do it too, but is not as skilled at manipulation, and more inclined to explanation.

So now we have reached a point telephone calls are made by robots, we have the immensely annoying telephone trees when you just want to shriek “I want to speak to a human.” We can turn on the air-conditioning or close the shades at home—from the office. Ordering anything online is killing the retail industry and you no longer have to go out to get dinner, you can have it delivered, as a kit to produce your own, or as a fully prepared meal. There’s a lot going on in that sector, and we can probably look forward to a time when we don’t have to cook at all.

What is becoming very clear is that new inventions will not develop in the way we assume. Our schools are making us dumber, and human nature being what it is, we probably won’t become wise consumers, very well-informed, or lifelong learners striving to know as much as we possibly can. After all, we’re still watching movies about comic book characters and playing silly games on our computers—rather than listening to symphonies and the finest Broadway productions.



Just What Is Fake News Anyway? by The Elephant's Child



There WAS a Vast Conspiracy to Mislead and Collude—By Democrats Who Tried to Blame Trump! by The Elephant's Child

The American media and political establishment deliberately allowed a false story that they knew was false to dominate the political discourse for months.

When former FBI Director James Comey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee last week, he revealed that he had informed important Congressional leaders that there was no investigation underway of President Trump and the Russians “even as MSNBC, CNN, The New York Times and The Washington Post daily carried stories alluding to an imaginary investigation” that they knew was imaginary.

 FBI Director Comey told President-elect Trump on January 6th he was not under investigation; Comey again told President Trump on January 27th he was not under investigation; and again on February 15th Director Comey told President Trump he was not under investigation.

However, more importantly, James Comey also admitted he told congressional leadership the exact same thing, repeatedly. Specifically, James Comey stated he informed: •Paul Ryan, •Nancy Pelosi, •Mitch McConnell, •Chuck Schumer, •Devin Nunes, •Adam Schiff, •Richard Burr, •Dianne Feinstein and •Mark Warner.

He told the Senate and House Intelligence Committees that President Trump was not under investigation. That’s 34 people if I counted right. That also means that all of their key aides and staffers knew that President Trump was not under investigation.

Thomas Lifson translates:

The American people were played as patsies, their attention diverted to a fantasy that had — and still has — no evidence whatsoever of its existence. That fantasy was propounded for political reasons, and used to subvert the outcome of a democratic election.

That, of course, is not the only “fake news” that has been dumped on us, while they call us bitter clingers, deplorables, racists and the usual array of names, they lie because they think we are stupid and easily fooled, and then can’t understand why they don’t get our votes.



The “Mainstream Media” Are Lying Again. There Is No Ban On Muslims. by The Elephant's Child

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Progressives seem to have slipped their moorings once again. Donald Trump announced executive orders to fulfill his campaign promises about restricting immigration from dangerous countries until the immigrants could be effectively vetted.

In war-torn Syria, there is no effective government that can reliably say who people applying for immigration are. Reliable sources say that forged Syrian papers are widely available to anyone who has the cash. We have already lost too many of our own citizens to terrorist attack. We need to be sure that we are not admitting ISIS fighters or al Qaeda who mean to attack Americans. This is about trying to save American lives.

The ensuing uproar and protests at the airports are sponsored by George Soros who wants open borders. Other than the paid protesters, there was much wailing and gnashing of teeth — “but they’re refugeeeees” — even Hillary chimed in to say  (echoing Obama) “that’s not who we are.” It is becoming really irritating to be told “who we are,” when Washington elites clearly have no idea.

The problem is precisely that we don’t know if they are refugees. The executive order also included an order to favor Christian sanctuary seekers. How dare he favor Christians over Muslims!! Religious prejudice! Constitution! Christians are far more apt to be killed by jihadists than other Muslims are, in the case if ISIS, rather spectacularly, and their wives and female children turned into sex slaves.

I ran across a quotation I saved from a piece in Forbes magazine in 2013 that seems appropriate:

None of this should surprise anyone. Contrary to what they tell you (and tell you and tell you) progressives don’t have principles. Rather they have faddish opinions that are highly unstable and often contradictory.                           Kathryn Shaidle

That makes more sense than anything else I have read lately.

The airport protesters (The Soros bunch) want open borders. In other words, we are to leave the door of our house open to anyone who might choose to wander in. We don’t have to be concerned because all people, and all refugees, are good people, just needy? Even vetted, some will slip through. Some of our terrorists were citizens, born in this country but radicalized in American Mosques or by trips abroad.

The Democrat media’s narrative is that President Trump is banning entry to possible terrorist populations Muslims because he is prejudiced against Muslims, and facts are not allowed to intrude. As Tom Lifson pointed out “Why is the United States supposed to admit Syrian refugees when oil-rich and piously Islamic Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, and the U.A.E. have not admitted a single Syrian? Their stated reason is the risk of terrorism.” So much for that faddish and unstable opinion.

From Sohrab Ahmari, writing from London, in the Wall Street Journal:

The irony is that freedom of movement is unraveling because liberals won central debates—about Islamism, social cohesion and nationalism. Rather than give any ground, they accused opponents of being phobic and reactionary. Now liberals are reaping the rewards of those underhanded victories.

Liberals refused to acknowledge the link between Islamist ideology and terrorism. For eight years under President Obama, the U.S. government refused even to say “Islamism,” claiming ludicrously that U.S. service members were going to war against “violent extremism.” Voters could read and hear about jihadists offering up their actions to Allah before opening automatic fire on shoppers and blasphemous cartoonists.

It’s strange to remember now how Europeans were welcoming “Migrants” from Syria with open arms, flowers, food, clothing and songs. It has been a long slow learning process and illusions of empathy and generosity have gone a glimmering. They refuse to admit what they have done, and what is happening on a daily basis, and their governments try to hush the minor things up, but they have “no-go” areas where it is unsafe for even police to intrude.

Democrats depend on people who don’t pay much attention to the news, cannot distinguish between “fake news” and real events. They come up with “talking points” to give their version of whatever it is that Republicans have done. President Trump has placed an immigration ban on immigrants from 7 nations that have been singled out as exceptional security risks in the Terrorist Prevention Act of 2015 and its 2016 extension. There is no ban on Muslims.

Do you remember the media howling when President Obama banned any processing of visas for Iraqi refugees in 2011? The 2009 discovery of two al Qaeda-Iraq terrorists living as refugees in Bowling Green Kentucky prompted a six month ban on immigrants from Iraq. Or when President Carter suspended any issuance of visas to Iranians in 1980.

Hollywood celebrities can always be counted on to rush to the nearest  reporter to express their deep understanding of current events. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo dramatically proclaimed himself a Muslim,   then included a Jew, a Gay, Black, Christian, transgendered  or a woman to make it clear that he was really inclusive. California wants to secede. Our own Gov. Inslee is filing a lawsuit—anything to distract attention from his budget request for another $11 billion in taxes because he can find no way to cut any expenditure. The Leftist media are improperly remaining in the fake news area, calling President Trump’s executive order religious bigotry, a “Muslim Ban.”

The Wall Street Journal had bet that it would take only 30 days for former president Barack Obama to start criticizing his presidential successor. But then he has never had George W. Bush’s grace. It only took 10 days. He couldn’t even wait until he finished his post-inaugural vacation. He had a spokesman issue a statement Monday afternoon reporting that the former president “is heartened by the level of engagement taking place in communities around the country” against President Trump’s refugee order.

“Citizens exercising their Constitutional right to assemble, organize and have their voices heard by their elected officials is exactly what we expect to see when American values are at stake,” added spokesman Kevin Lewis. “With regard to comparisons to President Obama’s foreign policy decisions, as we’ve heard before, the President fundamentally disagrees with the notion of discriminating against individuals because of their faith or religion.”

No one doubts that, but then Syrian refugees became a global crisis in large part because Mr. Obama did almost nothing for five years as President to stop the civil war, much less help refugees. Here are the number of Syrians his Administration admitted: fiscal year 2011, 29; 2012, 31; 2013: 36; 2014, 105; 2015, 1,682. Only in 2016 did he increase the target to 13,000, though actual admissions haven’t been disclosed. Mr. Obama also barely lifted a hand to help resettle translators who worked with GIs in Iraq or Afghanistan.

This executive order is not illegal, not unconstitutional, and not unusual. They’re just still protesting losing the election, because they can’t get over it. Pathetic.




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