History – Attention Must Be Paid

We have the power to stop this

Envisioning The American Dream

Vanity Fair cover 1933 July Despondent Sam Illustration by Paolo Garretto We need to take a hard look at history. A Vanity Fair cover from July 1933 showing a despondent Uncle Sam seated on the Western hemisphere with storm clouds above can serve as a somber harbinger for our own times. Illustration by Paolo Garretto

History has never seemed more relevant.

That anti-Semite Steve Bannon who made white nationalism mainstream through Breitbart, is now to be President Elect Donald Trump’s Goebbels…er…Chief Strategist.

This past summer with  the weight of history hanging heavy as the Republicans nominated Donald J. Trump as their candidate for president, historians spoke out as never before.

We didn’t listen then.

We need to listen now.

It’s a post worth repeating, so we don’t repeat history.

It’s Worth Repeating

A dozen distinguished  historians from David McCullough to  Ken Burns have bonded together to create a Facebook page called Historians on Donald Trump, dedicated to educating the voters…

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These Are The Times

A brilliant assessment of our moment in history.

Because You Can

Ever since Brexit, and probably during the build-up to it, I kept thinking, “this is what it’s like to live in history”. To live in a time when such monumental shifts are happening they will appear on a curriculum somewhere in the future, and people will be writing theses on 2016 in the way that they might write one now on 1066, 1918 or 1939.

Like most of the 48% of people who didn’t vote for Britain to leave the EU, I’ve had to come to terms with the fact that I’ve been living in a bubble (London – the biggest bubble of all). Seventeen million people in the UK didn’t think the same way as me or my friends. I’d already had an inkling that this might be the case during the election that brought our current Conservative government to power, but Brexit was still a mighty blow and wake-up…

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Fake News in the Age of Brazen Lies

Donald Trump tweets lies read round the World.

Trump's Tweet in which he claims he worked hard to Keep the Ford Plant in the States.
Lies heard round the world

Trump sent a tweet on November 17 with the big news that he had personally saved jobs in Kentucky.

Examine how Trump parses his words in that first tweet. Bill Ford called HIM.

Bill Ford advises him that he is keeping the plant in Kentucky.

Trump’s chat with Bill Ford may have gone like this:

Trump: So, ya movin’ the plant out of Lincoln,  Bill?

Bill Ford: What? No!…who said…?

Trump: 1 sec. I’m on twitter.

I decided to tweet Trump’s lie to see how it felt.

Screenshot of my parody of Trump's tweet in which he falsely takes credit for Ford's decision to stay in the U.S.
I feel so stupid for doing this!

The best lies are half-truths.

So,  what’s the whole truth?

We don’t expect our President elect to brazenly lie so our media took his word.

Ford had no plans to move the factory.

The story appears in the UK Telegraph on November 18:

Donald Trump says Ford not moving US plant to Mexico

US president-elect Donald Trump said on Thursday Ford Motor chairman Bill Ford had just told him the automaker had decided not to move production at a Kentucky plant to Mexico.

The Telegraph also posted that second tweet from Trump, a blatant lie:

“I worked hard with Bill Ford to keep the Lincoln plant in Kentucky. I owed it to the great State of Kentucky for their confidence in me!” Trump said on Twitter.

The Telegraph corrects the story and clarifies:

Ford has repeatedly said it has no plans to close any US plants and likely could not do so under the terms of the current United Auto Workers contract that expires in 2019.

The real story is that the The UAW, kept the Ford plant in
Louisville, not Trump.

How many U.S. media outlets corrected the story?

November 18 CNN Money Trump takes credit for saving Ford jobs that weren’t going to Mexico

November 18, New York Times Ford Move, Cited as Victory by Trump, Has No Effect on U.S. Jobs

The Times clarifies:

The plant is not primarily a Lincoln plant — the MKC represents roughly 10 percent of its total output. The MKC is a more expensive version of the Ford Escape, which is a much bigger seller than the MKC. Production of the Escape alone is enough to keep the Louisville plant running at full capacity.

Moreover, the decision to keep the MKC in Louisville was made before the two men spoke on Thursday, not as a result of their conversation, according to Ford.

The only news that still carries the Ford story as a victory for Trump is fake news:

Fake News: November 17 The Gateway Pundit TRUMP EFFECT: Ford Calls Donald Trump – Says Plant Will Not Move to Mexico, Will Remain in Kentucky

Fake News  November 18, Fox News Ford chairman tells Trump Lincoln SUV production to remain at Kentucky plant.

In a statement, Ford said the company “confirmed with the President-elect” that it would continue producing Lincoln MKCs at the Louisville plant and added that it was “encouraged that President-elect Trump and the new Congress will pursue policies that will improve U.S. competitiveness and make it possible to keep production of this vehicle here in the United States.”

Below are five fake news sites that regularly pop-up on Yahoo News and Bing as legitimate news media.

  1. WorldNet Daily, founded in May 1997, purportedly to expose wrongdoing, corruption, and abuse of power. Wikipedia
Screenshot of fake news site World Net Daily used to illustrate the patterns that arre typical of righht wing disinformation media
World Net daily dismisses student protests against Trump as ‘childish’ — Go through the archives and find the World Net Daily endorsements of armed insurrection as an adult reaction to a Clinton presidency. Please note that I’m not using false moral equivalency. There no moral equivalency between peaceful protest and armed vigilantes threatening to kill people if their side loses.


2. The Washington Times, founded in 1982 by News World Communications, an international media conglomerate associated with the Unification Church which also owns newspapers in South Korea, Japan, and South America, as well as the news agency United Press International. Wikipedia

Screenshot of November 19 headlines in disinformation media site, The Washington Times
The Washington Times defines diverse and White people and White people with tans.

3. The Weekly Standard, founded September 18, 1995 owned by MediaDC, a subsidiary of Clarity Media Group, itself a subsidiary of The Anschutz Corporation. Wikipedia


Screenshot from the Weekly Standard that reads defund Obamacare
The Weekly Standard gets its wish.

4. Breitbart News, founded in 2007 by conservative commentator and entrepreneur Andrew Breitbart. It also has a daily radio program on the Sirius XM Patriot channel called Breitbart News Daily. Wikipedia

Screenshots of The headlines on Brietbart News
The headlines on Brietbart News

5. The Federalist, founded in 2013, purportedly rejects the assumptions of the media establishment” and says it is dedicated to discussing “the philosophical underpinnings of the day’s debate” Wikipedia


Screenshot of the Federalist
Apparently, the ‘Philosophical underpinnings’ of our debate over Trump’s election is that GLBT people, Muslims, Latinos, Immigrants and African-Americans must seek out and ‘listen to’ the straight white people who voted to use the power of the government to terrorize them. us.

These disinformation  sites are  lesser versions of Fox News which is the best organized and best funded fake news site in the United States.

Expect them to do everything they can to subvert fact based coverage of the Trump administration.

Screenshot of the federalist accusing the New York Times of being disinformation
Expect right-wing disinformation media to do everything it can to subvert fact based coverage of the Trump administration.

It’s what they are paid to do.

RG 2016