Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
October 12, 2017

8 Out Of 10 Will Only Read This Headline

Headlines lie to catch attention. Only few read beyond them.

They will miss the facts, and the falsehood of the headlines. It is a dangerous development.

Here is an Australian example of current headline writing:


Top secret information about Australia’s military hacked

The lede:

TOP secret technical information about new fighter jets, navy vessels, and surveillance aircraft has been stolen from an Australian defence contractor.

The story could be relevant - if true. But it does not hold what the headline promises. The text says:

  • ".. the firm was subcontracted four levels down from defence contracts."
  •  ".. a mum and dad type business ... with about 50 employees"
  • "the admin password, to enter the company’s web portal, was ‘admin’ and the guest password was ‘guest’"
  • "the information ... included a diagram in which you could zoom in down to the captain’s chair and see that it was one metre away from the navigation chair"
  • "the information disclosed was commercially sensitive, it was unclassified"

The last snippet completely rebuts the headline. It appears in 18th of the 20 paragraph story.

A truthful (but boring) headline might have said: "Mechanics rat-shop puts marketing stuff on open website". No one would have clicked on it.

Headlines disproved by the following text have become common:

"It was not immediately clear what Trump was responding to."
"A large number of ads appeared in [other] areas of the country that were not heavily contested in the elections."
"It is too soon to map out exactly how the drug war will affect the health of Filipinos."

News content is now of lesser relevance than ever. "Clicks" are generated by headlines:

"Clicks" generate "visits" which convert into advertising revenue. Such headlines make economic sense - short-term. But the best paying advertisers seek a quality audience. In the long-term they will avoid such sites.

Once upon a time sensationalist false headlines were the loony realm of tabloid media. That is unfortunately no longer the case. Headlines of even reputable media no longer transmit facts. One has to dive deep into the stories to get to real information.

This trend will lead to a further stultification of the population. It makes it easier to manipulate the plebs.

Posted by b on October 12, 2017 at 12:43 PM | Permalink

Comments

thanks b.. i agree with you.. getting folks 'clicking' onto a link seems to be the most important consideration for those advertising $... they must juice the headline accordingly.. more and more are turning off...

Posted by: james | Oct 12, 2017 12:48:48 PM | 1

The NYT & Wapo have always been tabloids, so they're inevitably going to mimic their lowbrow kin online.

Yes, it's intentionally done to make people react instead of think. The headline does the thinking for them. The upside is that these people end up buying into the system and trying to make it work from the inside. The empire seems to be infested with simpletons who are incapable of critical thinking and have no idea how anything actually works.

Posted by: Jesrad | Oct 12, 2017 1:22:17 PM | 2

So, what's this post about, anyway?

I only read the headline.

Posted by: Ort | Oct 12, 2017 1:46:11 PM | 3

This article is EXACTLY why MOA is my first port of call when I am looking for honest reporting. Keep up your contributions to global sanity Mr B :-)

Posted by: DavidKNZ | Oct 12, 2017 1:57:26 PM | 4

"Click-Bait" is a by establishment stooges designed attempt to increase the uptake of propaganda, that lives now in the headlines. On 'Medium' - a platform to publish content by literally anybody, from all over the planet, one will be told, that the maximal reading time before losing interest is four (4) minutes. Anything longer than that will not receive the same attention than the short versions.
This has been known by the manipulators since Bernays advised and instructed corporations and the corporate regime in the fifties. The four minute attention span has been reduced to headlines. People that lack of cognitive capabilities, will always equate the headline with the subsequent content. But the headlines are always Orwellian. It is most always the opposite, of what is true.
Combined with massive censorship, this misinformation program has devastating consequences. The citizenry has no more whatsoever means to end the stream of propaganda.
All this is of course not new. It has been tried and improved in eight decades. The American people (of course not alone at that) have degenerated into consumers that suffer from extreme ADD. The headlines are tailored to promote that. A look at the shitpile of magazines at the checkout in every supermarket will reveal that. These 'headlines' are solely addressing the lowest common denominator of human consciousness. Quite pathetic.

Here is an article that explains how it all fits together. Do yourself the favor and read it to the end - no matter whether you like it or not. Think about your kids and grandkids when you read it. Those without offspring have no consideration for future generations anyways. The bucket stops at their doorstep.
http://www.hermes-press.com/germany1930.htm

Posted by: nottheonly1 | Oct 12, 2017 2:08:22 PM | 5

I couldn't resist the earlier facetious post, but B. is quite right.

Headlines are typically sensational, distorted, and intentionally misleading. This is an old journalistic custom, a legacy of the print-media tradition.

It's justified, or excused, as a kind of benevolent mendacity necessary to grab eyeballs.

I don't know if this is purely a US phenomenon, but it's a variation of the childish "trick" of pointing to nothing in particular; when one's companions peer in the direction the trickster is pointing, the trickster gleefully says, "Made you look! Made you look!"

However, Internet headlines escalate this supposedly benign deception by several orders of magnitude. In cyberspace, "grabbing eyeballs" is an antecedent with a consequent: clicking on the headline. Thus, the term "clickbait".

I'm not particularly knowledgeable about the commercial aspects of running a website, but I know that "clicks" are a kind of currency. Like "counting coup", tallying clicks are one measure of a site's popularity, which in turn enhances its commercial potential.

So it's in the site's interest to deliberately publish wildly inaccurate headlines and ledes, the better to maximize visitors' clicks.

This doesn't contradict B.'s assertion that "This trend will lead to a further stultification of the population. It makes it easier to manipulate the plebs."

Even if a viewer takes the (click)bait, that's no guarantee that the viewer will drill down to the inevitable contradictions or disclaimers buried in the text.

And, apart from their "clickbait" coefficient, Internet headlines are also increasingly hysterical; they're nodes in an escalating spiral of general hysteria.

For instance, since I have an old backup Yahoo e-mail account, I got into the dubious habit of checking the aptly-named Yahoo site every day. I've noticed a sharp escalation in melodramatic headlines and blurbs this year.

Most of them are Trump-related, and most of those amount to "alarms", or warnings, of some dire or extreme consequence of Trump's latest tweets, or actions. They scream breathlessly that everything from nuclear war to Trump's impeachment is imminent, based on some trivial or passing development that never justifies the inflated headline.

Other than "crying wolf 'Trump!'", they favor stories showcasing some individual being wronged by an alleged insult or injury.

These are the cyberspace descendents of "human interest" stories, except here the "human interest" focuses on some victim's highly-emotional reaction to some trendy outrage or scandal. This can vary from, say, endless stories about customers writing vicious comments about a server on a restaurant check, to the latest airline employee(s) abusing passengers.

And celebrities are also a staple source of screaming headlines. Apparently Yahoo editors are obsessed with celebrity scandals, and other celebrities' reactions to the scandal, ad infinitum.

This is indeed the old "trash-tabloid" approach, writ virtual.

Once in a while the story is actually newsworthy and worthwhile. But it's just as B. points out: sensational, virtually truth-free headlines and coy, disingenuous pseudo-journalism are elements of a constant mass-media "blooming, buzzing confusion" designed to keep complacent and submissive "consumers" in a state of pernicious, permanent confusion, uncertainty, and anxiety.

Posted by: Ort | Oct 12, 2017 2:48:12 PM | 6

@nottheonly1 #5
I don't disagree with what you say about the state of affairs today, but to extend this back to Bernays time seems a very large stretch.

Most of Bernays' productive years were before 1970 - before the Internet.

I have a hard time believing that reading habits pre-Internet are the same as today.

Posted by: c1ue | Oct 12, 2017 3:04:31 PM | 7

Thinking is passe.
Critical thinking needs an app.
I can't take a selfie of my thoughts, so I gave up thinking.

Today's "educated" generations.

Liberalism has succeeded. Emoticons, 140 characters. Zero relevance.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Oct 12, 2017 3:37:43 PM | 8

b, you may want to archive some of these links (archive.is) instead of driving more traffic their way and contributing to their ad revenue.

Posted by: Homer | Oct 12, 2017 3:45:23 PM | 9

well one of us didn't read below the headline because lack of interest (source/content)....but I read this, so good headline, well done

Posted by: sadness | Oct 12, 2017 4:02:13 PM | 10

There is a apparently near total consensus among journalistic authorities that you can outright lie in headlines as long as somewhere in the article itself you print a single line of truth. 1 line of truth in 20 lines of innuendo and falsehoods makes the entire thing suitable for print.

It reminds me of an analogy: if you add a drop of wine to a barrel of sewage, you have a barrel of sewage. If you add a drop of sewage to a barrel of wine, you have a barrel of sewage again. You gotta wonder what newspaper editors consider "sewage".

Posted by: Tay | Oct 12, 2017 5:00:59 PM | 11

if hacking means, try the default user name "Admin/Guest" and password "12345678", then i like most people are apparently skilled hackers.

Posted by: pB | Oct 12, 2017 5:04:23 PM | 12

Hardly a new development, but certainly an aspect of the fake news era. Read Drudge lately?

Posted by: JSonofa | Oct 12, 2017 5:31:51 PM | 13

A wee bit off topic but remember all of those headlines about the sonic attack of the US embassy in Havana? Well The Guardian has an article today pointing out a more plausible explanation: it was a case of mass hysteria among the embassy staff.

Another mass hysteria infecting the US like the Russians hacked our election.

Posted by: ToivoS | Oct 12, 2017 5:40:55 PM | 14

I think the other end of the critical thinking stick is common sense. It isn't a difficult thing to acquire - it just happens if you stop reacting and you have a memory to access.

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-10-12/trump-angry-after-learning-what-state-and-local-tax-repeal-really-means

So, a multi-millionaire real estate mogul has no idea of taxes...hmmmm

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-10-11/floridas-farmers-produce-smallest-orange-harvest-wwii-after-irma-wiped-out-half-crop

So, er....what about that article last year where 'citrus greening' had decimated half the FL citrus crop?

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-10-11/threat-supervolcano-eruption-yellowstone-greater-we-thought

Ok - It's not in the disaster news cycle of the Weather Channel - not ready for prime time then? NASA knows more than the USGS? And seriously, don't most people think that the lakes might boil away along with the geysers if things were really getting hot? I'm also betting the park employees would be the first to beat feet out of there. Hmmm...

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-10-11/cashless-world-youd-better-pray-power-never-goes-out

Really? Seriously? You mean the internet and cell phones require electricity?


The answer here is to develop that famous bovine excrement meter.

That would be THE killer add-on for any browser, likely to hammer all the other addons ever made...

Posted by: Oilman2 | Oct 12, 2017 6:11:12 PM | 15

- Is the australian army/military jealous of the large budget increases (about $ 50 billion in the next 10 years) the US military is about to receive in the next years ? That could be a good reason why this news was "being pushed". And it helps the news outlets to fill their newspapers.

(What do you mean "I am cynical" ??)

Posted by: Willy2 | Oct 12, 2017 6:36:11 PM | 16

You only have to consider the inroads the likes of Murdoch and co made into the newspaper market in the 1970's with tabloids to grasp that most readers don't go beyond the headline. Whhen I first arrived in england a young fella fresh from a place where all major newspapers published in broadsheet, I picked up copies of the Sun & Daily Mirror to see what they were all about -I still remember how shocked I was when I saw that the headlines and the story may has well have been about totally different subjects. The first gig I got in england was at a pub in Fetter lane which sold booze to either the law fraternity at Lincolns Imn Field by day and the printers & journos at the Daily Mirror by night.

The fixtures in the 'lounge bar' at night were chiefly sub-editors. They had just about all held major positions as journos writers in some of the most famous englander broadsheets, all had been sacked several times but were totally at ease about it, as middle aged ennui set in ,they had opted to become sub-editors, a non-management position that mostly involves designing headlines apart from some work ensuring the reporter conformed to whatever style the particular fishwrap preferred.

The Daily Mirror (this was pre Maxwell) was allegedly a Labour Party supporting working class oriented tabloid fishwrap yet all of these 'subs' - apart from one chap who had been recruited initially by Reuters as "their man in Saigon" sometime in the 1960's after he was dismissed from a first officer gig on a cargo ship and was stranded in Singapore, were unashamedly as right wing as they come. They would sit at the bar smoking Romeo y Juliet cuban cigars and drinking single malt whisky while loudly complaining about 'the lazy printers' who were next door in the public bar sloshing down pints and watching the footy. Everybody was allegedly still at work the printers would send one of their brotherhood back to "clock them all out" and the subs would each trudge round the corner to wish the chief sub they had just seen back at the "White Horse" (our pub) a very good night, before returning for a top up.
Few of the (I shouldn't call em arseholes cos some were decent blokes if politically dodgy) subs ever spoke to one another even if they had all worked together for years, if they wanted to send a message they would use me their barman to take a drink to another across the room or on other nights try and entreat me to deny service to some colleague or another. It was my first experience with the weird inability to communicate that bourgois englanders of that generation suffered from. The old Saigon hand (who offended the rest by drinking pints of bitter "why doesn't George go next door where he belongs" I was once told) would occasionally shout out when the night was old, "Bring me my opium pipe now" or some such. I suspect now that this was as much of a pose as the cuban cigar and the malt whisky props of the others.

These fools were unlikely to be earning any more than the printers next door (A Glenfiddich ran out at about 50p which wasn't much more than the despised pints) yet they wore their stupid bourgois pretensions like a badge of honour while they maintained they were "Keeping England (always england never Britain) on the right track" with their facile deceits and obvious propaganda.

What they failed to understand was that they were preaching to the converted, in much the same way as the MSM currently does. Nobody ever changed their point view because of their lies, at the time there was a huge range of daily newspapers and people chose whichever one best suited their particular belief system. I had left the job to go to Uni by the time Thatcher was elected and soon after the Thatcher government assisted Murdoch in destroying the Fleet St industry, but I have no doubt that the subs' lying didn't assist them in finding a new gig in the streamlined parrot media which followed - as many of them would have ended up tossed on the scrap heap as the printers.

All we can ever do is make sure we absorb 'news' from as wide a range of sources as possible then examine all the claims and try to form a reality outta that mess, but we have to understand that few others have the time or inclination to do the same. These shitrags may not convert anyone but they do reinforce existing misconceptions.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Oct 12, 2017 7:31:47 PM | 17

RT reported the same story.

Posted by: peter | Oct 12, 2017 9:27:10 PM | 18

Debisdead:

Awesome. Thank you.

As a newspaper photo editor in college, I had such naievete. Trying to get a job in print media circa 1990 was nothing but nepotism. And I knew no one. Your post sheds light on what I thought I wanted to enter, and maybe some more clarity on why I failed.

Posted by: TSP | Oct 12, 2017 9:42:37 PM | 19

The RT 'story' merely parrots the same tosh as the original SMH and znet.com twaddle; it doesn't include b's analysis of it as being a beat-up. Just as well as RT went through a patch last year of copying and pasting b's work - now they seem to confine themselves to merely pinching his sources.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Oct 12, 2017 9:48:39 PM | 20

The issue of fake headlines and fake news is just half of the story.

People have become lazy and ADHD, ADD and opioids-addled kids of all ages just don't read unless they have to.

To me, the saddest part of that is they don't even know the serious stories of their lives are unfolding now, like whether or not they'll awaken tomorrow to a nuclear death. They're also missing articles that are unfolding the hidden truths of our past and they'll never know about it because the bank-financed corporate/fascists will keep it out of the news.

Posted by: JSonofa | Oct 12, 2017 10:01:06 PM | 21

@clue #7
It is extremely difficult to draw a line between Bernays' work and what the consequences it had on society. I urge you to watch the documentary "The Century of the Self" - it reveals the implications of Bernays' work on the American psyche.
The American society has been programmed and conditioned for decades. These programs and conditions are now hard wired. Even if people would want to break free from these, it is akin of a chain smoker attempting to drop his/her addiction.
The Americans and most other Western nations have been programmed for long term effects and these effects are becoming painfully apparent.
Bernays was a misanthrope, he hated the masses and sold both the corporations and the corporate regime the tools to manipulate the psyche of the people - without those ever figuring out that they are manipulated every moment of the day. Covertly and overtly in plain sight.
In order to remedy this corporate assault on the 'common psyche', a thorough de-programming needs to take place. But who would be able to do that? Whom would the masses trust after decades of deception and manipulation? Is it not like the 'Oslo Syndrome', where people demand to be abused?
While I need no fixing, who could do the fixing/de-programming of the collective mind?

Posted by: nottheonly1 | Oct 12, 2017 10:41:37 PM | 22

Here's a headline that needs to be published globally: "The Russiagate scandal descends into total absurdity" as proved by the Senate Committee tasked with its investigation and recently announced through a press conference. Mercouris writes, "The result of all this impressive activity? Precisely nothing. Here is what Senator Richard Burr, its Republican chairman, had to say:

'There are concerns that we continue to pursue. Collusion? The committee continues to look into all evidence to see if there was any hint of collusion. Now, I’m not going to even discuss any initial findings because we haven’t any.' (Emphasis in original)

Mercouris's conclusion I heartily endorse:

"There is however nothing remotely reasonable about the true believers of the Russiagate scandal. On the contrary they have latched onto this material – whose lack of substance in fact proves the absurdity of their claims – not as disproving their claims but rather as vindication that what they have been saying all along about “Russian meddling in the election” has now been proved to be true. A whole stream of strange articles (see for example this one in the Financial Times) has appeared in the establishment media which all but say this.

"To which one can only say that when evidence of the non-existence of a conspiracy is taken as proof of its existence it becomes clear that all connection to reality and indeed to sanity has been lost." (My emphasis) http://theduran.com/russiagate-scandal-descends-into-total-absurdity/

When will this smelly, affrontive, idiotic Big Lie finally be called out for what it is by the GDMFSOB Media?! Or by a prominent Democrat Party politico? No, I'm not trying to be funny!

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 12, 2017 10:51:57 PM | 23

b

its more than click bait,

Oz is in lock step with uncle sham's china demonisation proj,
That damned PLA hacker outfit is at it again,
If the Chinese could siphon off files from Pentagon, Lockheed Martin as per NSA , [SIC]
THIS mom and dad shop should be a piece of cake ?
http://www.scmp.com/news/asia/australasia/article/2115001/hackers-use-china-chopper-tool-steal-australia-f-35-stealth

By now the drill should be all too familiar,
The moment I heard the 'news' I knew the Chinese would be fingered,
hhhhhhh

Posted by: denk | Oct 13, 2017 12:19:23 AM | 24

karlof1 @ 23 said:"When will this smelly, affrontive, idiotic Big Lie finally be called out for what it is by the GDMFSOB Media?! Or by a prominent Democrat Party politico? No, I'm not trying to be funny!

Short answer...Never. Reason? read notheonlyone @ 22...

Posted by: ben | Oct 13, 2017 12:30:48 AM | 25

Excellent summary of what's gone wrong at the MSM, b. It should be embarrassing to the neocons/neolibs on both sides of Oz Politics that you chose the current Australian hacked defense contractor beat-up as the launch pad. But the bribes and kick-backs insulate them from the real world and allow them to exist in a world devoid of embarrassment, shame or reflection - but overflowing with 'rental properties'.
The problem goes way beyond printed headlines. The Oz TV and radio news versions of this particular story use the same fact-burying template by deploying similarly over-sensationalised introductions to their bulletins.

It's all about sequence-management and "atmospherics." The story always begins with an outraged and indignant Official amplifying an exaggerated version of the headline followed by a bit of background. Then comes the detailed explanation which, eventually, includes some truthiness delivered by a long-winded, monotonous drone, such as PM Turnbull or a member of his Cabinet. So by the end of the bulletin, even though the false headline has been notionally refuted, a proportion of the audience has lost interest and/or concentration.
Maybe it's time to regard the MSM's Fake Headline template as a deliberate attempt to kill Curiosity...

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Oct 13, 2017 12:30:48 AM | 26

OT, but thought b might be interested to know that the integrity of his work is being disparaged in the Naked Capitalism comments section.

https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2017/10/links-101217.html#comment-2872454

Posted by: x | Oct 13, 2017 1:10:33 AM | 27

Putin has taken over CNN.

The network made up a story with the sole intent to ridicule all future stories about "Russian meddling".

The evidence: A headline that contradicts the actual text.
Exclusive: Even Pokémon Go used by extensive Russian-linked meddling effort

One Russian-linked campaign posing as part of the Black Lives Matter movement used Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr and Pokémon Go and even contacted some reporters in an effort to exploit racial tensions and sow discord among Americans, CNN has learned.

The campaign, titled "Don't Shoot Us," ...
...
CNN has not found any evidence that any Pokémon Go users attempted to enter the contest, or whether any of the Amazon Gift Cards that were promised were ever awarded -- or, indeed, whether the people who designed the contest ever had any intention of awarding the prizes.

.

Posted by: b | Oct 13, 2017 2:00:31 AM | 28

I just changed the headline of the above post from:
-> "8 Out of 10 Will Only Read This Headline"
to
-> "Hacked - The Secret Pictures Of Trump's Australian Sexlife"

I wonder what this will do to the "clicks" to this story.

Posted by: b | Oct 13, 2017 2:26:23 AM | 29

"...in an effort to exploit racial tensions and sow discord among Americans, CNN has learned."
This is about a guy acting exactly like a BLM activist, and doing nothing but rehosting stories and images shared by the actual BLM activist. And this is what CNN accuses him of doing. There is nothing shocking about this implication? CNN is all but condemning BLM here. It's obvious American progressives cannot rest on their laurels and feel confident they won the media battleground, they have to defend themselves again.

Posted by: Tay | Oct 13, 2017 3:07:50 AM | 30

Are these people for real?

CNN: "Pokémon Go Part of Russia Election Mess"
http://adage.com/article/digital/pokemon-polls-game-part-russia-election-mess/310870/

Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 13, 2017 3:10:20 AM | 31

Click...push...slide the finger. Read all the way down to stories' end, at the end of the comments section, that is! May we all be compensated with otherwise priceless wisdom to carry on more informed per the click, push, and slide of the finger on our information screens!

Posted by: ERing 46ZVet | Oct 13, 2017 3:20:32 AM | 32

Congressional testimony becomes click-bait.
We'd better get off the grid--
Congress warned North Korean EMP attack would kill '90% of all Americans'

Congress was warned Thursday that North Korea is capable of attacking the U.S. today with a nuclear EMP bomb that could indefinitely shut down the electric power grid and kill 90 percent of "all Americans" within a year.
At a House hearing, experts said that North Korea could easily employ the "doomsday scenario" to turn parts of the U.S. to ashes.
In calling on the Pentagon and President Trump to move quickly to protect the grid, the experts testified that an explosion of a high-altitude nuclear bomb delivered by a missile or satellite "could be to shut down the U.S. electric power grid for an indefinite period, leading to the death within a year of up to 90 percent of all Americans."

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 13, 2017 9:41:07 AM | 33

@33 Don Bacon. That would free up a lot of resources, while immediately making the world a safer place. unfortunately. Call me callous.

Posted by: Tannenhouser | Oct 13, 2017 10:54:59 AM | 34

from the web on why headlines are written by editors--

As a writer, you want to put together a responsible, defensible article. But you also want lots of people to read your article. An irresponsible, overblown headline can attract readers. But then you look irresponsible! The ideal scenario is for headline-writing to be someone else’s job. That way, they can err on the side of grabbing attention and if people complain you can always disavow it.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 13, 2017 11:26:38 AM | 35

Re Don Bacon @33

This is not an example of a misleading headline, because the text seems as misleading as the headline. Although I should read till the end. Some people think that EMP may fry circuits in devices like GPS on dashboards, and younger drivers are not able to get anywhere without them -- memorizing a map, or even having a map is a skill/habit of days long gone. Resulting traffic chaos would clog the highways and food supplies would not reach the cities forcing people to eat junk from cans and causing fatalities like "refried beens overdose". But electric grid should be more robust, some transformer stations could be damaged, but that would be no worse than aftermath of Maria in Puerto Rico -- not good, but less than a massacre. Repairs should not take that much time.

Concerning GPS scenario, a country threatened or "pre-emptively attacked" could retaliate with missiles directed at GPS satelites, that does not require any nuclear warheads. Lethal or not, it would inflict huge economic cost on the entire West.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Oct 13, 2017 12:29:27 PM | 36

I expect that the headline change will significantly increase the hits but not the click through and reads as much

Fear mongering or not, if my sources are accurate, an EMP attack taking out serious amounts of transformers would take at least 3 months to replace/repair because much of the needed technology has been outsourced to other countries. If it happens in fall/winter in the US then quite a few people would be in danger because both the people and infrastructure have no depth of alternatives.....just the sort of event to push folks into allowing more control by the overlords....sigh, isn't that the plan?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Oct 13, 2017 3:16:02 PM | 37

Sad statement on the vapidness of western media and the internet in particular. True substance is hard to find amid the noise.

Don Bacon 33
I saw that article, too. Fearmongering works. I once read a thin, short book by congressman Curt Weldon warning that Iran could launch a nuke from a ship to do an EMP to the US. This was in 2005 and some said the story came from Ghorbanifar. Total waste of time.

A strong EMP could hurt the US if it took out the grid long term. Our food system is built on a just-in-time process where shortages can happen with any calamity. But at least - after suckering us in with new stories - the Yellowstone Caldera probably won't erupt any time soon.

Posted by: Curtis | Oct 13, 2017 4:36:26 PM | 38

Drowning in data
Ineffectual inefficiency
Watching the whole world burn
Controlling it all delusionally

Freedom security
Conundrum paradox
DC spook speak
For putting us in a box

Safe in our cages
While cops watch overhead
Don’t step out of line or
Pretty soon you’ll be dead

God Bless America
And everything she meant to US
But the freedom train
Turned right into a prison bus

Don’t take a knee while she raves
For freedom & liberty
Don’t mention the home of the brave
Has crashed into the sea

Qubes a hope for a few
For freedom’s warriors everywhere
Soon they’ll hack into that too
To crush we who really care

Where did they come from
And why do they hate and turn
And how can an old hippy
Even cause a moment’s concern

Hope in the human race
None that I can see
We got a corrupt controlling Fed face
And a fearful blind society

The sun also rises on
At least that’s what I always thought
The darkest hour is before dawn
And Freedom just can’t be bought

Posted by: Anonemus | Oct 13, 2017 5:34:45 PM | 39

Here's the cultivated meme,

The Russkies specialise in political hacks,
while the chicoms like to dig mic 'top secrets' {sic]

You'd be surprised how many murkkans buy into this B.S. !

hhhhh

Posted by: denk | Oct 14, 2017 3:33:36 AM | 40

@Debsisdead | 17 - fascinating reminisences, thanks.

"and soon after the Thatcher government assisted Murdoch in destroying the Fleet St industry"

And for the next 45 years (!!) no UK government won an election without the support of Murdoch!!

The power of the media is tangible.
And it is not new. Orwell was shocked by the outright lies and propaganda spewed by British press regarding the Spanish civil war.
More up to date, however, the vociferous and coordinated media attacks against Corbyn failed ...

And if you look at Turkey closely enough, and the coup in particular, you will see a different front opening up which is the creation of a false history to 'validate' of a false event.
Ever since the 'coup' the media has every day, literally, spun greater and greater lies, 'uncovered' more and more 'footage' or 'evidence' (which can only have been shot/ manufactured later!!) and every day this is recounted faithfully and repeatedly by the media. That 'bombs' were dropped on Turkey is now mainstream thought! That the hotel where Ersogan had been staying wqs atracked at night and that footage has now emerged is now widely accepted yet it is in direct contraditction to his immediate statememts of having left at 16 hours - which we witnessed at the time!! The lies go on and on ... And as of this year into the school curriculum!

Makes you wonder what future we are preparing for ourselves ... !

Posted by: AtaBrit | Oct 14, 2017 5:02:10 AM | 41

AtaBrit | Oct 14, 2017 5:02:10 AM | 41

Hmmh, at the same time one can see in the country that the people just stopped to further listen to those media. Their grim daily fight for survival leaves not too much time to follow the events further. But if Media overstretch the manipulation a big part of the population first looses interest in it and second they stop to believe anything. It is like in the former countries behind the Iron Curtain: something is verified sufficiently only if the Western media (at that time!) report it in the same way. People are fed up. The only thing that would help the guy is to advice his media to support this new MHP-substitute which can then be bought-in against all promises it will deliver in their campain.

Posted by: Fritz F. | Oct 14, 2017 5:52:31 AM | 42

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