Ben Foy
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prop·a·gan·da
ˌpräpəˈɡandə/
noun
noun: propaganda; noun: Propaganda
1.
derogatory
information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view.
"he was charged with distributing enemy propaganda"

Massive amounts of the so called 'news' that is spread is propaganda. The funny thing is every one is afraid to call the stuff what it is, despite it being easy to spot. In this thread, I am going to point out how to spot propaganda and differenciate between various types of journalism.

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  • Sun Dec 24, 2017 2:32 am
Ben Foy
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The 6th article from the Washington Post is:

White House vows to stand firm on Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/white-house-vows-to-...

This is the lead in:

Quote:
The Trump administration has scrambled to contain the remarkably broad international rejection of its new policy toward the divided city of Jerusalem, including from important allies — using threats, assurances and a cold shoulder to try to limit the diplomatic damage.

Trump’s announcement this month that the United States recognizes Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and has initiated the process of relocating the U.S. Embassy there has caused an extraordinary breach with key allies such as Egypt, Jordan, Britain, France and Japan, many of which have characterized the move as shortsighted at best.

Not one major ally or geopolitical leader has pledged to follow the U.S. lead. Many have also spoken in new and starkly critical fashion against Trump’s break with 50 years of diplomatic convention that treats Jerusalem — holy to Jews, Muslims and Christians and claimed as a capital by two peoples — as an open question to be resolved only through negotiations.

At the same time, the worst fears of allies and some U.S. diplomats have not materialized. U.S. embassies were not immediately sacked, nor were American tourists or troops targeted for revenge.


It is a summation of facts. It should be easily defendable.

Quote:
“Overall, the reaction was more muted than we expected,” said one U.S. official, speaking on the condition of anonymity. “It was not zero, but it was muted.”


Quote which supports intro.

Quote:
Trump is more annoyed than surprised, people who have spoken to him said. He has told aides and members of Congress that the decision merely recognizes what is already true in practice, since the Israeli government is headquartered in Jerusalem, and has complained about what he considers narrow thinking and pearl-clutching diplomatic caution.

“Let them vote against us. We’ll save a lot. We don’t care,” Trump said Wednesday, threatening punitive cuts in U.S. aid to the United Nations ahead of a U.N. vote Thursday condemning the action.


Trump's opinion including a direct quote.

Quote:
The vote of 128 to 9, with 35 abstentions, illustrated the degree to which the Trump administration is going it alone. Egypt, the first Arab nation to make peace with Israel and a keystone in any hope on Trump’s part for a Middle East peace accord, sponsored the original resolution.


Results of the vote.

Quote:
“America will put our embassy in Jerusalem. That is what the American people want us to do, and it is the right thing to do,” U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said before the vote, which the United States knew it would lose badly.

“No vote in the United Nations will make any difference on that, but this vote will make a difference on how Americans look at the U.N. and on how we look at countries who disrespect us in the U.N. And this vote will be remembered.”

Haley thanked the short list of fellow no voters for what she called their bravery. In addition to the United States and Israel, that list included Guatemala, Honduras, the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau and Togo.


More administration quotes and viewpoint.

Quote:
The nonbinding resolution declares that “any decisions and actions which purport to have altered the character, status or demographic composition of the Holy City of Jerusalem have no legal effect, are null and void and must be rescinded.”

Language in the resolution was softer and less direct in its criticism of the United States than Palestinians had proposed, after Egypt and some European allies said they would not vote for the original version. U.S. officials said they did not lobby for that but pointed to it as a sign of solidarity with the United States.


A quote from the resolution and the administration's opinion of it.

Quote:
Still, the vote reflected the long-standing views of allies that Trump needs for international projects such as the pressure campaign against North Korea or to reinforce a future Israeli-Palestinian peace deal.

“This vote must not divide or exclude,” said France’s U.N. ambassador, François Delattre. “It is more important than ever to rally the international community around the agreed parameters of the peace process, and this of course includes the United States, as everyone is aware of its particular role and influence on this issue.”


A different opinion with quote.

This is followed by more Trump administration opinion, speculation about the direction of us Mid-east policy. Warnings by Mid-east leaders.

The opinion of the Washington Post reporters or editors is not in this story. This is journalism of the highest caliber and what regular readers expect from the post.


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Ben Foy
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I had intended to compare it to the 6th Washington Times article but that article is World News and it doesn't look to written by a regular Times reporter. Also the article cuts off after 2 paragraphs. But looking at what I can see, the level of journalism is on par with the post.
 
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Elias Någonsson
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It's relevant to note that the absence of explicit opinions on part of the journalists or publishers does in no way prevent something being propagandistic.
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Walt
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Before terraforming Mars, Surviving Mars is required: Paradox Interactive; Steam.
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sajberhippien wrote:
It's relevant to note that the absence of explicit opinions on part of the journalists or publishers does in no way prevent something being propagandistic.

No, but Ben shows the article is also balanced. It presents the administration's view fairly.

The only word I'd be tempted to criticize in the article is "scrambled", but considering Trump's usual chaotic management style, it's probably accurate.
 
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The WaPo article is skewed because it presents the whole thing as some sort of effrontery originally conceived of by the Trump administration and buries the part about the 1995 law, never mentioning that Congress has resolved to move the embassy on multiple occasions with large bipartisan support.

Presumably one of Trump's aims was to get in the good graces of Israel in order to perhaps demand some concession on their part, because Trump has pretensions of negotiating some kind of deal. Not a single Israeli reaction is quoted in the piece.

The article also presents the unexamined perspective that the U.S. is obligated to collect money from its taxpayers and fork it over to foreign governments, and that the prospect of discontinuing such payments to countries not acting favorably to its interests is some kind of aggressive threat.
 
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Wendell
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Si non potes reperire Berolini in tabula, ludens essetis non WIF.
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Kiraboshi wrote:
The WaPo article is skewed because it presents the whole thing as some sort of effrontery originally conceived of by the Trump administration and buries the part about the 1995 law, never mentioning that Congress has resolved to move the embassy on multiple occasions with large bipartisan support.


Safe in the knowledge that the president had to agree for this to happen. None did, till this current idiot. Which is at least a salutary lesson to Congress not to pass a law and give the president an escape clause with the hope that the legislation never, you know, goes into effect.

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Niall Smyth
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‘Fake news’ has been entirely co-opted by bald-faced liars and conspiracy theorists to deny evidence when it is presented.

I don’t think there’s any way to reclaim it. Just let them have it.
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