by Charles Hugh Smith, Of Two Minds:
Media junkies on the tragic path to extinction believe the junk news, non-junkies see through the manipulation.
The mainstream media continues peddling its “fake news” narrative like a desperate pusher whose junkies are dying from his toxic dope. It’s slowly dawning on the media-consuming public that the MSM is the primary purveyor of “fake news”– self-referential narratives that support a blatantly slanted agenda with unsupported accusations and suitably anonymous sources.
Many of these Fake News Narratives are laughably, painfully bogus: that President Trump is a Russian tool, to take a current example. (That President Obama was a tool of the neocon Deep State–no mention of that. According to the MSM, America doesn’t even have a Deep State–har-har…the joke’s on you if you are credulous enough to swallow this risible absurdity.)
But the real danger isn’t fake news–it’s junk news. Junk News (the title of a 2009 book by an Emmy Award–winning journalist– Junk News: The Failure of the Media in the 21st Century) —is related to Junk Science and Junk Food.
Junk science is presented as “science” but cherry-picks data to support a specific but unstated agenda–an agenda that requires downplaying or overlooking conflicting data.
One common example of junk science is the approval of new medications by the FDA. If you actually dig into Phase III data, you may well find that the “benefits” of the new wonder-drug are barely above statistical chance, and the potential interactions with commonly prescribed (or imbibed) drugs are ignored.
This is how we end up with medications with an unfortunate side-effect: death from misadventure, addiction, in combination with other commonly prescribed meds, etc.
(For more junk science, check out how meds going off-patent magically get FDA approval for additional –and immensely profitable– patent protection.)
Junk food is now so ubiquitous we lose sight of its core qualities: it is “food” in the sense of being digestible, but it is harmful above very small, occasional doses. It is not “food” in the context of natural food or healthy food–in those contexts, “junk food” must be placed in parentheses because it doesn’t qualify as “food.”
It is empty calories, garbage that generates a host of chronic illnesses, but not “food” in the sense of being nutritious, life-supporting or healthy.
Junk news is like junk science–cherry-picked to support a corporate agenda–and like junk food in being digestible but toxic. As this brilliant essay explains, the unemployment rate is an premier example of junk news (and junk economics–a thriving subculture of junk science and junk news–just read any Paul Krugman spew for an example.)
An unemployment rate of 4.7% once meant full employment and rising wages for the laboring class–but alas, now it is just another ginned-up junk-econ/junk-news “statistic” designed to push a bogus narrative: everything is awesome (as the financial security of the bottom 80% swirls the drain).
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