Axios morning email thingie has a piece in it about Conspiracy Theories going mainstream, and you’ll never guess which media outlets are involved (weird emblodening and enigmatic bullet are all theirs, baby!):
Several right-leaning TV networks and hosts have walked back or acknowledged giving oxygen to conspiracy theories, Axios’ Sara Fischer writes.
- Why it matters: There’s been a lot of focus over the past few years on misinformation spreading online. Yet some of the most damaging falsities have come from TV networks that reach millions of Americans daily.
Notice how –so far– they have not named any?
Sinclair Broadcast Group asked its dozens of local affiliates not to air this weekend’s episode of “America This Week,” hosted by Eric Bolling.
- The recalled show let discredited “Plandemic” activist Judy Mikovits tout a false conspiracy that Anthony Fauci started the coronavirus.
Really? Dr. Fauci started the Trump-Virus? We need to go a little deeper, so following the link…
Catch up quick: The interview, conducted last week, features host by Eric Bolling, interviewing researcher and activist Judy Mikovits and her lawyer Larry Klayman, a right-wing activist, about the coronavirus.
- In the interview, Mikovits says she believes that Fauci “manufactured the coronavirus” in monkey cell lines and paid for and shipped the cell lines to Wuhan, China. That assertion has been widely discredited by scientists and health officials.
Details: In a series of tweets, the broadcast giant said it decided to delay the episode’s airing and “will spend the coming days bringing together other viewpoints and provide additional context.”
Other viewpoints? It’s not opinion, that’s stunningly stupid. They don’t want to offend the mush-brained, so they are saying it is a viewpoint that Fauci created the Trump-Virus.
In a normal media world, a producer would never allow this to happen, and Bolling would be suspended. But this is not a normal media world. Back to Axios:
Fox News host Jesse Waters said in an interview Saturday with Eric Trump that QAnon, a far-right conspiracy theory movement, “uncovered a lot of great stuff when it comes to Epstein and the Deep State.”
Well, a quick fact-check shows us that pedophile-obsessed Q-Anonites missed the entire Epstein story, you know, AN ACTUAL PEDOPHILE!, and still do not believe that Prznint Stupid even knew him, despite all the evidence, including Trump talking about him. We continue:
- Watters later said in a statement: “While discussing the double standard of Big Tech censorship, I mentioned the conspiracy group QAnon, which I don’t support or believe in. My comments should not be mistaken for giving credence to this fringe platform.”
One America News Network (OANN), a conservative network that’s become a recent favorite of President Trump’s, has also spread false information, but has been more reluctant to disavow the segments.
…which is probably why Lord Damp Nut loves them so much.
Moving on, the MIT email thingie goes long on the Q-spiracy:
It’s too late to stop QAnon with fact checks and account bans
What—or who—is QAnon? QAnon was born in late 2017 with a series of mysterious posts on 4chan. The posts attracted followers who spend their time interpreting these messages and leading campaigns to make the messages more visible. Some QAnon adherents have led coordinated harassment campaigns against journalists, rival online communities, celebrities, and liberal politicians. QAnon accounts were instrumental in spreading a bogus human-trafficking conspiracy theory about the furniture marketplace Wayfair. And there have been multiple incidents of real-life violence linked to QAnon supporters.
What are Twitter and Facebook doing? Twitter took a step aimed at limiting how successful QAnon can be there, including taking down about 7,000 accounts that promote the conspiracy. Facebook is said to be planning to “take similar steps to limit the reach of QAnon content on its platform” next month, the New York Times reported.
What more can they do? It’s too late to stop QAnon completely, but Facebook should still educate users not just on how to spot misinformation, but also on how to understand when they are being manipulated by coordinated campaigns. Platforms must also stop people from descending into algorithmic or recommendation tunnels related to QAnon. Read the full story.
We live in strange times, and I suppose the conspiracy theorists have always been with us. But I do think that the Right Wing Noise Machines are reaching more into the fringes than they have recently, but more than ever they need to distract us from the many failings of the 4th Reich.