There's a feedback loop as well: Breitbart found fertile ground because of decades of partisan separation from the facts, including a TV news network run by former political operative for the party. There's positive feedback between manipulation and profit motive. That primed people for a tenous connection to reality, waiting to be broken by fake news sites, and then to vote for candidates who rely on it.
No, that is a narrow view of history. The history of propaganda, yellow journalism, sensationalism and fake news has a long and storied history beyond today's talking heads
When trump say there is fraud or bidens son has stuff in ukraine its "fake news" and its tweet are censored.
There is a so high level of despising the people who voted for trump... You guys in america got what you deserved..
This is 100% objective from a french guy, i would vote bernie sanders if I was american. The extreme right in my country goes up for the exact same reason and people who think they are so smart by hating trump are arrogant and unable to see it's just tribalism from both side.
How can twitter think they have the right to hide some claims from one camp and not from the other when at the end of the day no one really has any fact at hand ?
I support the left ideas but they have no way to win if they dont have the regular people on their side or worse, despise them.
Most outlets and people who criticized trump in the name of being more "reasonable" or "presidential" or more "intelligent" ended behaving with the same tribalism and arrogance by insulting and laughing at his user base. To the point of not even realizing that by fighting and insulting him, they were alienating their user base more than it was already and actually helping him being elected.
Thats what i wanted to point out with they got what they deserved: democrats and media arrogantly thinking they were "so smart" but having stances that gave the opposite result. In the end trump was the only one openly owning completly a "tribal" behavior, the only one not hypocritical about that, and probably the only one who knew what he was doing.
P.s. Policing words and arguments on a forum like here or reddit is the same essence: you think you improve the level of the debate but actually people who stay are all the same polite makov chains that doesnt want to offend each other and agree, and the angry disagreeing ones just leave to the_donald or the manosphere. So much for improvement..
Fight and provocation are good and should be in the open. Its the only think that make people move. Read about how the google culture when it started.
I've posted about this many times. A partly-related comment from today is https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=25130956. An earlier one is https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=24620683 and there are links to a bunch more explanations. If you read those, and still have a question that isn't answered by them, I'd be curious to know what it is.
Political discussions will always messy and confrontational because its about real people issues.. Only rich and priviledged people can afford being nice about it because they dont care.
Maybe you should just ban the political discussions altogether on HN if you want to avoid the drama.. no one will blame you
At this point I think the game is lost. I mean... we just had an election which came out (absent higher turnout) more or less exactly like the last one, to within a percent or two. And half the country genuinely believes it was stolen by fraud to the tune of hundreds of thousands of ballots across at least four states.
How do you come back from that? I don't think we do. I just don't know what the endpoint is going to be yet. But disinformation is no longer just competing with real facts, it's won the war.
Before the 2016 election, the Republican partisans insisted that fraud and malfeasance were likely, and the Democratic ones said it was impossible.
From 2016-2020, the Democratic partisans insisted that there had been some sort of fraud or malfeasance, and the Republicans insisted that it was impossible.
By the end of 2020, we're back where we were in the middle of 2016, where the Republican partisans insist that fraud and malfeasance were likely, and the Democratic ones say it was impossible.
And those are the so-called 'mainstreams' of the respective parties! The situation is part Orwellian, and part real-life satire.
In 2016 Democrats thought manipulation / fake news (exactly the root problem in this article) was happening, and it appears it was. They recognized there is risk to systems and proposed to enhance election security based on the new (and proven) information that state actors were directly involved in trying to manipulate our election. I do not remember (I may be proven wrong), Democrats undermining the fidelity of the election itself, or alleging fraudulent votes, excepting one or two places where it was proven to happen (see the Dan McCready campaign).
My understanding is both parties now are roughly aligned with their longstanding positions in terms of how they view election security and relative occurrence of voter fraud and malfeasance. Comparing the 2016 positions on interference via fake news is apples and oranges, it is fundamentally a different subject – and the allegations of election interference were literally proven true by a justice system run by the Republican party.
I'm not saying both are equal, I am saying the situation is ridiculous. I think you're about right in your assessment, though I do think each side has shifted its emphasis to whatever points were most convenient.
The only thing that changed between 2016 and 2020 is the party of the winners.
On the flip side, the allegations from the 2020 election are repudiated by virtually all elections officials. Direct accusations of election misconduct have been recanted by their original claimants. At least as of a few days ago, ten out of ten suits filed by the Trump campaign were lost or thrown out of court. And even if every single suit filed to date was won, it wouldn't overturn the results of the election.
The two sides are not the same at all.
Edit – the fact that I'm getting downvoted (-2 right now) instead of getting a single valid answer pretty clearly shows the political lean of this forum.
But that's not what Republicans in 2020 are complaining about. They are, with a straight face, but with no proof, claiming that the election's results are illegitimate - because they feel that the votes have not been counted correctly.
This isn't a valid case of two-sidism. There is no way to bridge or alleviate or equate those concerns.
Please provide evidence for this claim. I don’t recall any democrats claiming fraud in the 2016 election. This has been parroted repeatedly lately and I don’t recall anyone saying trump won because of electoral ballot fraud.
There is plenty of evidence that outside nations targeted American voters on social media in 2016. There is 0 evidence for widepspread ballot fraud in 2020.
And there was definitely ballot fraud in 2020. How widespread it was is yet to be determined.
Source? I can't find a poll that asked this question, or anything closely resembling it, reported.
What notable Democrats have "insisted" there was "fraud or malfeasance" in the 2106 election? I'm genuinely curious. The only claims of 2016 fraud that I can recall at the moment are those of Trump (when he tried to account for losing the popular vote).
But since Trump lost the popular vote, "illegitimate" is a somewhat reasonable opinion IMHO. As in he won the election legally but is not the "legitimate" leader of the people in a moral sense.
And a Time article: https://time.com/5565991/russia-influence-2016-election/
And the Wikipedia page on all the allegations of Russian involvement: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_interference_in_the_20...
There are more...
The evidence that Russians do try to influence out electorate is pretty ... evident.
"From 2016-2020, the Democratic partisans insisted that there had been some sort of fraud or malfeasance"
It's simple - either show us where Democrats have maintained there was widespread fraud in 2016 or withdraw that part of your comment.
Election fraud means actual illegitimate votes were involved. Election interference means pretty much every other thing that one can do to influence an election. Most notably - disseminate false or misleading information.
The other side believes that Russia acted to influence the 2016 election (not really the same thing as "stole", but whatever, I'll grant that) based on reputable journalism, and that's... bad for the same reason?
It sounds like you're making a PRO-disinformation argument here! You're saying that sourcing and truth doesn't matter, just the opinion that it produces? Yikes.
Other side opposes it strongly.
Can’t argue about fraud if one won’t even take a basic precaution.
As that is where many of the issues with an ID requirement are: https://www.brennancenter.org/sites/default/files/legacy/Dem...
Also a fan of federal standards where states run Their own ID, but have to have some basic security steps in place.
If we allow voting by mail—which doesn't require a photo ID—then we can allow voting at the polls without one either.
They also perform risk-limiting audits. Every state does them.
Those who try seem completely unaware of even the most basic steps taken by elections officials to prevent exactly these kind of abuse.
It's almost as if the people we tasked with designing these systems weren't completely incompetent, considered how bad actors might try to interfere, and designed these systems with those considerations in mind!
I think we just fundamentally will have to disagree then.
Are you actually okay with disenfranchising voters in all of these states?
How do they operate motor vehicles to get to or from (or at) jobs, especially in the majority of counties in the United States without substantial public transit systems?
How do these people even purchase alcohol without proof of identity? I still get carded and I've been a legal drinker for well over 20 years.
Many of them don't.
I would however like to call out your extremely offensive implicit assertion that anyone who doesn't have ID is likely to be a social aid recipient.
> How do they operate motor vehicles to get to or from (or at) jobs, especially in the majority of counties in the United States without substantial public transit systems?
It's extremely common to get rides from friends, family, and/or coworkers.
> How do these people even purchase alcohol without proof of identity? I still get carded and I've been a legal drinker for well over 20 years.
And this is locale-dependent. I was carded 100% of the time during a trip to Colorado last year, but I haven't been carded except a handful of times since living in California. I'm 35.
It was routine to “borrow” kids from friend to get more benefits.
At some point rules changed, and she stared working again.
It was a bit before my time.
But I’m guessing that welfare supporters dismissed concerns at that time as well.
Of course I could be wrong, maybe all politicians knew about the fraud and honestly reported on how easy it was.
Or perhaps a better argument is that millions of foreign undocumented people vote a certain way...
I'm curious about your "better argument" here. Do you have any data to show how, and where, these millions of foreign undocumented people are voting?
If you're going to write a comment lamenting about how disinformation is unstoppable, you probably shouldn't use disinformation to try and make a point.
Just to be clear though, since I'm guessing how this answer will go: do you believe that the election result was correct? Because if you don't, it's rather a different kind of fallacy to argue sideways about it.
This changes my view from "media bias websites are dumb and shouldn't be taken seriously" to "media bias websites are dumb and shouldn't be taken seriously, but are also potentially useful for reputation laundering."
I have played around with the idea of the "minimum viable journalism," given what private equity has done with Sports Illustrated. Generate 1000 word pieces via MTurk or GPT-3, host on Netlify, cheap DNS name, buy traffic on Fiverr. Would $50/mo be enough to be rated on one of these sites? Get on publisher ad exchanges?
HN has been getting more postings on the political side of media, and that just lets in the shills, trolls, pundits, and the like. A posting with a title like “the next fleet of Breitbarts” is only going to lead to comments that are a waste of good photons and too much work for moderators.
For their own sanity, the moderators need to triage more ruthlessly on political matters.
The more important questions are why people are consuming what amounts to fake news and conspiratorial worldviews. Trust in institutions is at an all-time low, censorship and surveillance are at all time highs leading people to seek the outsiders and outlets that agree and tell them "They are lying. They hate your guts and want to destroy everything you love". This basic message resonates as true for so many because everything around them is being destroyed and no one (else) is even offering to fix it.
This has nothing to do with being right-wing IMO, in fact I think right wing outlets are the only ones doing this because the American government crushed the far left so thoroughly its impossible for them to seek funding to build any such movement.
The defense of broken things that "they could be even more broken" somehow isn't working.
Also, the Internet seems to have made a lot of people more thin skinned, and angry at thought provoking statements.
(Did Cerf, Kleinrock et al. foresee they were laying the ground work for a reactive "venting" machine?)
The real question for hn (IMO) is whether these are problems that can be solved with technology.
Perhaps we should throw that same playbook at organizations like Breitbart.
You need to understand that to anyone left of center, your demand seems to be a conspiracy to be wrong at will. Isn't that likewise a "bad look"?
What's your solution?
What the fuck does this mean? I want people to be free to express themselves, and yes, that includes being free to earn money. I do not want a few corporations deciding what people are allowed to say on the internet, or even who is able to earn a living on the internet.
It also sounds like you don't support the ability of people who purchase ads to have any control over whether their money funds publishers of the type described above.
Do I have that right?
So, yes, that's OK. Even if he's completely wrong in his claims of fact, we shouldn't be expelling people from society over their choice of historical allusion.
Now, you can argue that this was irony, sure. In the real world, if Bannon isn't delusional, we don't do that and it won't happen. But it's not a metaphor. The word "actually" tells you that right at the start. He is saying, literally, what he would like to do.
And that's awful, and shameful, and if anyone who wasn't on your team said it you'd be screaming (c.f. Kathy Griffin and the severed head -- which was a metaphor!).
Russia used to have a joke department to ensure all jokes were politically correct.
Worked with some Russians who kept going on about how serious a matter it was.
Consider the origins of the term "heresy"...
Their problem here is that it worked, and they won. So now people are trying to fight back by borrowing parts of the playbook. Victim of their own success by dirty tricks.
In Bannon's case while he didn't directly call for beheading Fauci his comments certainly rose to the level of "Will no one rid me of this meddlesome priest?"
Lauding Tudor England and the King's ability to call for the beheading of anyone who crosses him (which should be anathema to any patriotic American), basically says the above. And according to history Thomas Becket was murdered by four knights who crossed the English channel to rid the King of his meddlesome priest.
As far as monetising fear and anxiety, individuals have been doing that for years whether fire & brimstone preachers or the Alex Jones of the world who have a product to help you avoid some conspiracy he's promoted.
The first amendment. Specifically, the freedom of association.
> Shall we have Left payment processors and Right payment processors?
Sounds possible. What about Leftcoin and Rightcoin?
> I’d actually like to go back to the old times of Tudor England. I’d put the heads on pikes. I’d put them at the two corners of the White House as a warning to federal bureaucrats.
He seems to mean it literally. Or he's taking the metaphor way beyond it's reasonable limit.
I'd say that not including the full quote while attempting to defend is a "nasty trick".
If he’d said “A part of me would like to” instead it probably would have been assumed to be metaphorical. But he didn’t, so here we are.
"Second term kicks off with firing Ray, firing Fauci. Now I actually want to go a step farther ... I’d actually like to go back to the old times of Tudor England. I’d put the heads on pikes. I’d put them at the two corners of the White House as a warning to federal bureaucrats"
Edit: Similar things have popped up in your other comments (e.g. https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=24954162) – that's not what we're going for here. If you'd lease review the guidelines and take their spirit to heart, we'd appreciate it.
We live in a time where those who claim to be conservative or liberal are anything but.
If Nancy Pelosi had said she’d “actually like to put a bullet between the eyes of Donald Trump”, would the secret service not consider that a grave threat of bodily harm?