It's not exactly remarkable for an election to be lousy with fact-free rhetoric from lying politicians, editorial bias and media sensationalism.
It's also no great secret that the two clowns nominated by our two dominate parties are both unabashedly dishonest.
What's changed over the last few elections is the role that political news blogs, alternative media and social media have played in promulgating
disinformation. Say what you will about the mainstream media but they do have at least some minimal concern for their reputations and perhaps more
importantly, there is the threat of being sued for libel.
However, these concerns aren't shared by the purveyors of clickbait who have no standards and not one iota journalist integrity — because nobody
hold's them accountable and as Fox News's Sean Hannity said, "I never claimed to be a journalist." Most often the primary goal is simply to
publish content that grabs the attention of consumers, goes viral and generates ad revenue (clickbait). I won't even sully the work of serious
researchers by referring to this garbage as "conspiracy theories."
In reality they are hoaxes for profit and propaganda
Just as with the mainstream media we have an obligation to be informed consumers of information coming from the host of new sources we are presented
with. In fact, well-springs of disinformation that they are, I'd say anyone whose skepticism doesn't increase proportionally is at best a gullible
fool and likely worse, an unwitting useful idiot parroting disinformation to everyone they know.
With that spiel out of the way, I'd like to address one such example that exploded on the Internet today.
The "allegation?" That Hillary Clinton wore some sort of earpiece in last night's NBC Commander-In-Chief Forum to receive coaching.
The source? A clickbait site called True Pundit who can't be bothered to update their SSL cert but claim
to have an "anonymous NYPD source"
who in turn claimed
to know that Hillary was wearing an "invisible earpiece" to receiving coaching.
The proof? Aside from the dubious tipster, they have a grainy zoomed image and an "enhanced video" which has been making the rounds on Twitter with
the hashtag #hillarysearpiece. I won't send them traffic. If you haven't seen the image and you'd like to, it's posted in
this ATS thread
These folks hit a grand slam when non-journalist, fabricator of "evidence," unabashed propagandist and
trawler of garbage from YouTube
, Paul Joseph Watson picked up on the story from James
Woods's Twitter feed and posted about it on
The Drudge picked up
the story from InfoWars
and put it front and center. The InfoWars link was also reposted by
Donald Trump Jr on Twitter
and Trump advisor AJ Delgado who
apparently thought better of it deleted the tweet.
Now this hoax has made it all the way to
Call me sentimental but I miss the old days when the feeder network republished from Fox instead of Fox picking up garbage from the bottom. It's a
smart strategy though because this way they can publish utterly indefensible, libelous clickbait garbage content without having to be responsible for
whether or not it contains even a shred of truth.
By this point hundreds of news blogs have picked up and repeated the story and of course, if it's not there already, it will soon be on the front of
our own beloved ATS, promoted by the wishful thinking and dare I say, incomprehensible willful ignorance of some of our pro-Trump posters.
How do we know it's really
Start with the fact that the
Clinton campaign denied it
to Fox News:
Two senior campaign aides, though, told Fox News the report is absolutely not true.
In both cases, the candidates had to contend with suspicious-looking photographs. True Pundit published a zoomed-in image of Clinton’s left
ear showing a shiny reflection purported to be a stealth communications device.
But Clinton spokesman Nick Merrill said what is seen
in the photo is merely a reflection of the TV lights or a flash.
It only makes sense that the campaign would lie. It's what campaigns do. However, I bring you a variety of different shots of Hillary's left ear
from a variety of sources, right and left-leaning (because the new claim is that every picture anyone uploads that doesn't show an earpiece was
photoshopped by Hillary supporters).
[continued in next post]