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The U.S. Government Has Essentially Created A Ministry of Truth

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Obama’s Recently-Signed National Defense Authorization Act Includes A ‘Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act’. The Intercept’s Alex Emmons Explains.

TheRealNews / Dandelion Salad

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http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/evergreenedigest.org/files/US%20Drone%20Being%20Readied%20for%20Flight.jpgJanuary 1, 2017 | Last Friday, President Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act into law. The NDAA allocates almost $19 billion in military and war spending. Now, within this massive piece of legislation is a law that will create an anti-propaganda agency known as the Global Engagement Center. That’s right, within the NDAA is another law known as the Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act. Now, this Act was initially introduced by Senators Rob Portman, Republican, from Ohio and Democrat, Chris Murphy from Connecticut. This was back in March.

Now, this was before it was integrated into the NDAA. Now, this Act creates a center run by the US State Department whose goal will be to, "expose and counter, foreign disinformation operations by our enemies, and proactively advance fact-based narratives that support the US allies and interests." The Propaganda Act also establishes a fund to train a local journalists and provide grants and contracts to NGOs, civil society organizations, think tanks, private sector companies, media organizations - that will participate in countering propaganda and advance fact-based narratives that support US allies and interests.

Alex Emmons is a senior reporter covering national security and foreign affairs, human rights and politics. Now, prior to joining the "Intercept" he worked for Amnesty International and the ACLU on their campaigns against targeted killing, mass surveillance and Guantanamo Bay

Full story (video, transcript, related archival material) … 

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Trump’s lies are not the problem. It’s the millions who swallow them who really matter.

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  • As the alt-right continues to set the agenda in global politics at a frightening pace, has the world reverted to a 20th-century era of totalitarianism?
  • Related: The Issue is Not Trump. It is Us.

Nick Cohen, the Guardian 

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https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/cf4a476fd7edb3741025d0abbae0a0a83dd9f11b/21_0_2370_1422/master/2370.jpg?w=780&q=55&auto=format&usm=12&fit=max&s=2bcec344ecd0caba01660d80900924e4  Believers: Donald Trump supporters attend the inauguration ‘freedom ball’ in Washington last month. Photograph: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Saturday 4 February 2017 | Compulsive liars shouldn’t frighten you. They can harm no one, if no one listens to them. Compulsive believers, on the other hand: they should terrify you. Believers are the liars’ enablers. Their votes give the demagogue his power. Their trust turns the charlatan into the president. Their credulity ensures that the propaganda of half-calculating and half-mad fanatics has the power to change the world.

How you see the believers determines how you fight them and seek to protect liberal society from its enemies. And I don’t just mean how you fight that object of liberal despair and conservative fantasies, the alternately despised and patronised white working class. Compulsive believers are not just rednecks. They include figures as elevated as the British prime minister and her cabinet. Before the EU referendum, a May administration would have responded to the hitherto unthinkable arrival of a US president who threatened Nato and indulged Putin by hugging Britain’s European allies close. But Brexit has thrown Britain’s European alliance into crisis. So English Conservative politicians must crush their doubts and believe with a desperate compulsion that the alleged “pragmatism” of Donald Trump will triumph over his undoubted extremism, a belief that to date has as much basis in fact as creationism.

Nick Cohen is an English journalist, author and political commentator. He is a columnist for The Observer, a blogger for The Spectator and TV critic for Standpoint magazine. He has written for the London Evening Standard and the New Statesman.

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Related: 

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/evergreenedigest.org/files/Bullshit%20%28VU%29%20Meter.jpg The Issue is Not Trump. It is Us, John Pilger, CounterPunch

When will a genuine movement of opposition arise? Angry, eloquent, all-for-one-and-one-for all. Until real politics return to people’s lives, the enemy is not Trump, it is ourselves.

Related: The President America Deserves

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The Entire World is “Fake News”

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  • Actually, nothing and nobody can be trusted!
  • Related: 2016: How Truth Was Destroyed So You’d Buy The Government’s Propaganda

Andre Vltchek, Dissident Voice

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http://truth-out.org/images/images_2014_07/2014_0714gir_.jpg (Image: Jared Rodriguez / Truthout

January 8th, 2017 | Imperialist demagogues, as well as religious fanatics, are known to live in their grotesque realities. They erect huge sand castles, invent mascots, and bombard the public relentlessly with self-promoting messages.

Those who refuse to listen and believe, those who dare to doubt and resist, are sidelined, starved to death, humiliated or simply liquidated.

Western religions and European/North American brutal colonialist practices are intertwined culturally. Hand in hand, for centuries, they have been destroying our Planet, from corner to corner, on all continents and even on the high seas.

Andre Vltchek is a philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He has covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries. Three of his latest books are the revolutionary novel Aurora and two bestselling works of political non-fiction: Exposing Lies Of The Empire and Fighting Against Western Imperialism.

Full story … http://dissidentvoice.org/2017/01/the-entire-world-is-fake-news/

Related: 

2016: How Truth Was Destroyed So You’d Buy The Government’s Propaganda, Claire Bernish, Activist Post

In the very near future — without hawk-like vigilance — dissenting opinion and reports accurately depicting corruption endemic in government may become a thing purely of the past.

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Series | Trump Nation, Part 6: Landslide Donald

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James Fallows, the Atlantic

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https://cdn.theatlantic.com/assets/media/img/posts/2016/12/Conway/79b6ee4fa.png  Kellyanne Conway, on Donald Trump’s “blowout” win

December 10, 2016 | As I mentioned in this post in late November, and in this followup, and also in a discussion with Diane Rehm on her new podcast series yesterday, Donald Trump’s lies differ from those we have encountered from other national figures, even Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton during their respective impeachments. The difference is that Trump seemingly does not care that evidence is immediately at hand to disprove what he says. If he believes what he’s saying, at least in that moment, why shouldn’t we?

For the record, the latest entry of this sort is the repeated insistence by Trump and his associates that he won a “landslide” or “major” victory. For instance, this was his transition team’s response to reports of Russian attempts to swing the election in his favor.

James Fallows <http://www.theatlantic.com/author/james-fallows/>is a national correspondent for the Atlantic <http://www.theatlantic.com> and has written for the magazine since the late 1970s. He has reported extensively from outside the United States and once worked as President Carter's chief speechwriter. His latest book is China Airborne.

Full story … 

Previously in this Series:

Seymour Hersh Blasts Media for Uncritically Promoting Russian Hacking Story

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Journalist Seymour Hersh in Perugia, Italy, on April 1, 2009.

  • Hersh denounced news organizations as “crazy town” for their uncritical promotion of the pronouncements of the director of national intelligence and the CIA, given their track records of lying and misleading the public.
  • Related: Series | Trump Nation, Part 1: How to Deal With the Lies of Donald Trump: Guidelines for the Media

Jeremy Scahill, the Intercept

http://www.globalresearch.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/propaganda-lies.png January 25 2017 | Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh said in an interview that he does not believe the U.S. intelligence community proved its case that President Vladimir Putin directed a hacking campaign aimed at securing the election of Donald Trump. He blasted news organizations for lazily broadcasting the assertions of U.S. intelligence officials as established facts.

Hersh denounced news organizations as “crazy town” for their uncritical promotion of the pronouncements of the director of national intelligence and the CIA, given their track records of lying and misleading the public.

“The way they behaved on the Russia stuff was outrageous,” Hersh said when I sat down with him at his home in Washington, D.C., two days after Trump was inaugurated. “They were just so willing to believe stuff. And when the heads of intelligence give them that summary of the allegations, instead of attacking the CIA for doing that, which is what I would have done,” they reported it as fact. Hersh said most news organizations missed an important component of the story: “the extent to which the White House was going and permitting the agency to go public with the assessment.”

Seymour Myron "Sy" Hersh is an American investigative journalist and author based in Washington, D.C. He is a regular contributor to The New Yorker magazine on military and security matters. He is writing an alternative history of the war on terror.

Jeremy Scahill is an investigative reporter and war correspondent. He has reported from Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, Yemen, Nigeria, the former Yugoslavia and elsewhere across the globe. Scahill has served as the National Security Correspondent for The Nation Magazine and Democracy Now!. 

Related:

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Series | Trump Nation, Part 1: How to Deal With the Lies of Donald Trump: Guidelines for the Media, James Fallows, the Atlantic

 

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Don’t treat Donald Trump as if he’s a normal president. He’s not.

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  • From the US Congress to Theresa May, everyone needs to understand that when the next president takes office the usual rules will no longer apply.
  • Related: Series | Trump Nation, Part 1: How to Deal With the Lies of Donald Trump: Guidelines for the Media

Jonathan Freedland, the Guardian

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Saturday, 14 January, 2017There is one week to go and all is confusion. Next Friday Donald Trump will take the oath of office and be sworn in as president of the United States. But still no one has the first clue how to handle what’s coming. Politicians, journalists and diplomats, in the US and around the world, are searching for guidance, desperately flicking through the pages of the rulebook, a manual full of past precedents and norms that they have spent their careers mastering – but that Trump burned and shredded months ago.

In normal times, even those few parts of this week’s “dirty dossier” affair that are firmly established would be enough to undo an incoming president. Put aside the lurid details of what went on in Moscow hotel rooms. Assume they’re untrue. Focus instead on the fact that the US Department of Justice sought and eventually gained secret court warrants to investigate two Russian banks and their links with a series of Trump associates.

Jonathan Freedland is a weekly columnist and writer for the Guardian. He is also a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books and presents BBC Radio 4's contemporary history series, The Long View. In 2014 he was awarded the Orwell special prize for journalism.

Full story … 

Related:

Series | Trump Nation, Part 1: How to Deal With the Lies of Donald Trump: Guidelines for the Media, James Fallows, the Atlantic

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Trump Nation is an ongoing reader discussion led by James Fallows regarding Donald Trump’s rise to the presidency. (For a related series, see “Trump Time Capsule,” as well as “Will Trump Voters and Clinton Voters Ever Relate?”) To sound off in a substantive way, especially if you disagree with us, please send a note: hello@theatlantic.com.

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