Thursday, 13 October 2016

Fact Checking as a False Narrative

Aside from outright political propaganda (to use that word), its all a game of semantics, of misrepresenting facts and information, of 'spin' and the creation of a favourable impression or presentation. The 'truth' as it is said, is usually the first casualty...
"2002: Hillary passes legislation in the aftermath of 9/11 to help first responders receive the care they deserved. She pushed the EPA and Bush Administration to investigate the health impacts of air quality downtown."
Mostly True

Hillary Clinton, then New York Senator "took a leading role in investigating the health issues faced by 9/22 first responders, ultimately winning the first federal appropriations for medical monitoring of 9/11 Responders". She did not in fact "help first responders receive the care they deserved", but instead secured funding to put a monitoring network in place ostensibly for keeping track of concerns associated with dust inhalation from the 'pile'.

Whilst this may seem a sematic rebuttal (argument over differences in wording), the original statement nonetheless still misrepresents the facts.

The reality of the situation was one of a relatively newly appointed New York Senator (sworn in Jan 2001) looking to establish herself as a progressive leader, one, well before 9/11, already determined to make her way to the Whitehouse, some going so far as to suggest, reading between the lines, the 'help' offered in the form of the Legislation may have been a smokescreen for having Wall Streets' back.

The initiative is also in stark contrast to the support her career and now campaign is said to have received from Saudi Arabia through the Clinton Foundation, one of the leading Nations alleged to have been behind the 9/11 attacks, whilst simultaneously being critical of the Country and others similarly donating funds.

• • •

"Trump hires an architect for Trump National Golf Club’s clubhouse—who he would go on to stiff out of more than $100,000, despite saying he was extremely pleased with the work."
Mostly True

The facts are that after the job was completed Trump engaged in "after-the-fact renegotiations" to cut costs associated with the project, not at all uncommon in business, construction especially - "Tesoro: Although I resent that he shorted me a huge amount of money, his organization does that to everybody. At the time I could see [...] all subjected to an after-the-fact renegotiation challenge. I didn’t take it personally."

Whilst this again is a sematic rebuttal it's important to recognise the tone impugned by the quoted statement, that Trump is just a bad person. Which further speaks to the themes used as a contrast and compare, that Clinton is caring and emotive (health, concerns after tragedy), Trump cold and business like (money, stiff, unfair).

Not doing any more of these, as can be seen from just this single entry from, the rabbit hole each of these compare and contrast 'cards' opens up is a bottomless pit of manipulation, of fact spinning and misdirection of the highest order.

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