Intercept: Yet Another Major Russia Falls Apart: Is Skepticism Permissable Yet?
This is not Donald Trump crying “fake news.” This is Pullitzer prize-winning investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald from the left who frequently calls out Trump. We are being regularly misled by our media about the ties between Trump and Russia. I don’t doubt that Trump has unsavory business ties in many countries, but in their desperation to link Trump to Russian the mainstream media has churned out many damning accusations, presented as major stories, which have then fallen apart.
I agree with DemocracyNow.org’s Amy Goodman, who recently asked (paraphrasing) Why doesn’t the mainstream media simply wait until there are concrete developments in the Trump/Russia ties? Because our media is
a) telling their audiences what they want to hear without even vetting their scoops, and
b) if Trump didn’t manipulate the election with Russian help, Democrats are forced to deal with the fact that their party cluelessly ran a candidate who could lose to a jack@ss like Trump, after cheating Bernie Sanders who could likely have beaten The Donald. If the media can go out on a limb with stories about Russian collusion which routinely fall apart, Hillary supporters get to take solace over their losing choice. It wasn’t Hillary, it was Russian interference! If Trump did collude with Russia to influence the election, then prosecute him to the fullest. But as these claims fall apart, Democrats have put all their eggs in a Russian basket while failing to autopsy their own party which caused a loss to the idiotic Trump. And a loss of both houses of Congress and 2/3rds of state governorships and star senates, which are now controlled by the GOP. Did Russia influence those elections, too? No, Democrats are a failed party which is in shambles so they’re trying to shift the blame away from themselves.
An excerpt from THE INTERCEPT: “Sometimes stories end up debunked. There’s nothing particularly shocking about that. If this were an isolated incident, one could chalk it up to basic human error that has no broader meaning.
But this is no isolated incident. Quite the contrary: this has happened over and over and over again. Inflammatory claims about Russia get mindlessly hyped by media outlets, almost always based on nothing more than evidence-free claims from government officials, only to collapse under the slightest scrutiny, because they are entirely lacking in evidence.
The examples of such debacles when it comes to claims about Russia are too numerous to comprehensively chronicle. I wrote about this phenomenon many times and listed many of the examples, the last time in June when 3 CNN journalists “resigned” over a completely false story linking Trump adviser Anthony Scaramucci to investigations into a Russian investment fund which the network was forced to retract:
Remember that time the Washington Post claimed that Russia had hacked the U.S. electricity grid, causing politicians to denounce Putin for trying to deny heat to Americans in winter, only to have to issue multiple retractions because none of that ever happened? Or the time that the Post had to publish a massive editor’s note after its reporters made claims about Russian infiltration of the internet and spreading of “Fake News” based on an anonymous group’s McCarthyite blacklist that counted sites like the Drudge Report and various left-wing outlets as Kremlin agents?
Or that time when Slate claimed that Trump had created a secret server with a Russian bank, all based on evidence that every other media outlet which looked at it were too embarrassed to get near? Or the time the Guardian was forced to retract its report by Ben Jacobs – which went viral – that casually asserted that WikiLeaks has a long relationship with the Kremlin? Or the time that Fortune retracted suggestions that RT had hacked into and taken over C-SPAN’s network? And then there’s the huge market that was created – led by leading Democrats – that blindly ingested every conspiratorial, unhinged claim about Russia churned out by an army of crazed conspiracists such as Louise Mensch and Claude “TrueFactsStated” Taylor?
And now we have the Russia-hacked-the-voting-systems-of-21-states to add to this trash heap. Each time the stories go viral; each time they further shape the narrative; each time those who spread them say little to nothing when it is debunked.
NONE OF THIS means that every Russia claim is false, nor does it disprove the accusation that Putin ordered the hacking of the DNC and John Podesta’s email inboxes (a claim for which, just by the way, still no evidence has been presented by the U.S. government). Perhaps there were some states that were targeted, even though the key claims of this story, that attracted the most attention, have now been repudiated.
But what it does demonstrate is that an incredibly reckless, anything-goes climate prevails when it comes to claims about Russia. Media outlets will publish literally any official assertion as Truth without the slightest regard for evidentiary standards.