'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrity

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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on September 9th, 2020, 10:14 pm 

Coronavirus live news: Trump says he 'perhaps' misled Americans as global deaths pass 900,000
The Guardian, 9 Sep 2020
US President Donald Trump spoke to Fox News’s Sean Hannity about the Woodward book revelations. He repeated that his response to the pandemic was intended to avoid panic.

“I said don’t panic (over the virus)... I’m a cheerleader for this country and I don’t want to see panic,” Trump said.

Trump also said the US had done an amazing job with regards to deaths.

“If you look at our numbers, our fatality numbers compared to other countries, it’s amazing what we’ve done. We’ve been able to do something...that especially with the country the size we have, we’ve done an incredible job.”

The US has recorded more than 190,000 deaths. It has the 7th highest deaths per 100,000 in the world at 57.97.

The only countries with higher deaths per 100,000 are Peru (93.71), Spain (63.34), Bolivia (62.51),Chile (62.37), Ecuador (62.20), Brazil (60.85).


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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby charon on September 10th, 2020, 2:51 am 

That's always what he was doing. Plus the subversive, hypnotic hand signs. It was obvious except to a large mass of people who promptly bought his vacuum cleaner... sorry, voted for him.

But the trouble with deception is that it's very hard to maintain for any length of time. And even Hitler had his fans right to the end and beyond.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby TheVat on September 14th, 2020, 5:26 pm 

https://mobile.twitter.com/nancysantane ... 02f606d011

https://www.politico.com/news/2020/09/1 ... -19-412809

The CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports are authored by career scientists and serve as the main vehicle for the agency to inform doctors, researchers and the general public about how Covid-19 is spreading and who is at risk. Such reports have historically been published with little fanfare and no political interference, said several longtime health department officials, and have been viewed as a cornerstone of the nation's public health work for decades.

But since Michael Caputo, a former Trump campaign official with no medical or scientific background, was installed in April as the Health and Human Services department's new spokesperson, there have been substantial efforts to align the reports with Trump's statements, including the president's claims that fears about the outbreak are overstated, or stop the reports altogether
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby toucana on September 14th, 2020, 7:06 pm 

The tale of Michael Caputo gets even wilder:

The third Caputo story is, somehow, much more dramatic: In a Sunday Facebook Live appearance, the HHS official alleged that there is a seditious “resistance unit” within the CDC that is attempting to sustain the pandemic until after the presidential election—and said that he believes this unit is plotting to murder him. (Said Caputo: “They’re going to have to kill me, and unfortunately, I think that’s where this is going.”) In addition to this targeted assassination, Caputo asserted that left-wing activists are conducting “drills” across the country to prepare to kill Trump supporters in the event that Joe Biden does not win the election.

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/09/trump-coronavirus-official-michael-caputo-says-the-cdc-is-conspiring-to-murder-him.html

According to another account, this same appointee is advising Trump supporters to "buy ammunition" in preparation for a Biden attempt to seize the presidency from Trump.

https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/9/14/1977347/-Embattled-HHS-official-claims-life-is-in-danger-CDC-has-resistance-unit-in-off-the-rails-video

In his defence, he does mention that his "mental health has definitely failed".
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby TheVat on September 15th, 2020, 6:43 pm 

Before 2017, it was relatively more rare to watch government officials experience mental health failures so dramatically. Now in the US, it's more like, "ah, it's Tuesday again. "

A new article in The Atlantic addresses quite cogently and sharply how the media has failed to sufficiently filter for truth and thus allowed absurd and grossly false statements to come to seem more and more the norm in politics.

Most dangerous, as has been discussed here before, is when you have an objective state of affairs (and matter of public record) on one "side" and demented lies on the other, and the press strives so hard to be evenhanded in their coverage that they provide way too much oxygen to the lies, as if they are a perspective on reality worth giving equal weight.


https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archi ... es/616222/
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby TheVat on October 21st, 2020, 10:18 am 

Among the poll’s findings: More than 8 in 10 rated the spread of misinformation about government a “major problem.”

The deluge in political misinformation and conspiracy theories has fueled distrust in institutions and threatens to undermine confidence in elections, democracy and the nation itself, according to Cindy Otis, a former CIA officer, author and disinformation expert.

“We are living today in the biggest period of false information in history, and we Americans are largely doing it to ourselves,” Otis said last week during a hearing focused on election-related misinformation. “Americans are losing trust in what they read and see online. We are desperate for information, but certain groups feel they cannot trust the traditional institutions upon which they used to rely.”

The poll found the candidates and their campaigns are themselves seen as not credible by many Americans, with less than a third of Americans saying campaign messages from either Biden or Trump are often or always based on facts.

Roughly half of respondents said Trump’s campaign messages are rarely or never based in fact, while about 4 in 10 respondents say that of Biden’s campaign...


https://apnews.com/article/election-202 ... 037d2ad06c
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on October 22nd, 2020, 3:56 am 

And yet what is a "fact," really? Our brains smooth over the blind spot where the optic nerve meets our eyeballs so that we may enjoy a seamless 'truth.' In this respect, a 'fact' is often something that satisfies our habit of indulging in confirmation bias.

People can be hypnotized to ignore the pain of dental work - as an alternative to more traditional anesthesia, and the skeptic philosopher Phyrro could apparently undergo surgery without any anesthetic.

Perhaps the only truth the majority of people will 'respect' is a bullet or something similar (covid, when it kills their elderly relatives, for example), but there are some who will not even respect that reality. 72 virgins, anyone?

Some people live within very different truth/'fact' domains it seems.

Sure, they can use the label 'truth' or 'fact,' but it has a very different practical/socioeconomic foundation.

Perhaps it is the wealth divide that initially creates these disparate 'echo chambers,' and then there are all the traditional religious/ideological institutions on top of that, of course....

Just a big mess, lol.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby BadgerJelly on October 22nd, 2020, 4:57 am 

Isn’t this simply a matter of who has the time to care? I mean, who really has much time to sift through all the info out there (or the will and know how to do so).

What will happen is exactly what is effective in the current political game. Personally I don’t see the point in getting distracted by the sham of ‘this or that political party’ as the power lies in forcing the current administration to do what you want it to do.

I still find these kinds of figures the main reason for purposeful mosinformation:

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/10/01/electio ... llion.html

Basically, if you’ve an uncapped amount to spend on campaigning then why waste time being selective with impactful information when you can just carpet bomb the public through social media and rely on disruption rather than actual information based on planned out policies/manifestos.

The event of the internet has shown the world what US politics is all about (and the US economy). It is all about quantity over quality. This will eventually weigh against itself once the impact of mass global communications comes fully online and once it has been in full swing for long enough for people to realise what is going on.

For the here and now I don’t see things getting better quickly before they get worse. Like I said, this is just getting started. My wish is that while different political parties are busy battling it out (in what is a dying sphere of public interest) a different way of doing politics will slowly and surely shove them to one side. I’m guessing this will be through some kind of multimedia interaction that will most certainly involve AI of some kind in a more impactful and accepted manner.

For the rest of the planet, and the US, I hope Biden gets in. Beyond that I hope he gets out quickly too and people find themselves in a situation where BOTH candidates on both sides are new and fresh - honestly though, I think if Trump loses he’ll just be back again next time AND will likely win then unless someone stronger opposes him. I say this because I don’t believe Biden can do a good job that will be publicly perceived as a ‘good job’ due to the current situation the world is in.

The silver-lining here is if Trump wins then you’ll only have to put up with him for four more years! By the time those four years are over I’m sure Covid will be gone and he’ll be talking about his ‘success’.

The black cloud is the state of the opposition. Playing naive and talk of ‘misinformation’ as some new and underhanded tactic in politics (especially in the US) is frankly laughable.

Honestly I’ more concerned about humanity getting a moon base and travelling to Mars. This is minnows stuff. The movers and changers aren’t really politicians but they are political in that they inspire and innovate. All the politicians are meant to do is enable humanity to expand and innovate.

The information age is just getting going folks! Hold onto your seats :D
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby JohnD on November 19th, 2020, 5:16 pm 

This isn't about if Trump wins or loses. It is an attempt to declare an election null and void regardless of how the majority have voted. Trump has stacked the Supreme Court and poured rhetoric like oil on fire all to subvert the thinking of the majority. He has those who are closest to him convinced that their future is with him and only him. Unfortunately, all of Trump's administration have comparable counterparts in Hitler's cabinet. Please always be aware for Trump it isn't about losing, losing has never been a part of the picture, it's about winning at all costs including the American Constitution. Failing this the Republicans have a back up of disrupting any attempt by the Biden government to pass any form of legislation. I feel for all Americans, the American Constitution and the ramifications for democracy everywhere.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on December 30th, 2020, 2:00 am 

Science matters. The remarkable response to Covid has reminded us
The Guardian, Wed 30 Dec 2020
the past 12 months have brought epidemiology, and science in general, into the spotlight like never before.
[...]Trust in science in Australia is high, and while there are still lessons to learn for the next pandemic – because there will be a next pandemic – there are many places where we have clearly done a pretty good job.

And that’s really the story of science this year. Setbacks galore, and problems that we really need to fix, but also some of the most amazing work that has ever been done.

As we've discussed here before, the ultimate truth is whether family members are dead or alive. Everything else in between is open to political spin. And when life and death become dependent on the scientific truth, suddenly post-truth is not really a thing anymore, and those scientists become so essential to everyone's 'life or death' truth....

It's all fun and games kicking the truth's ass when there's no covid to contend with, but there is no way to spin the fact that covid did NOT disappear when the spring weather arrived...
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby JohnD on December 30th, 2020, 3:36 am 

We've been fortunate in Australia. State governments have done their best to contain and eliminate the virus and to a greater extent, it has been successful. Our political controversy has been our federal government who had wanted us to come out of quarantine and open up for business while doing nothing to assist with those areas under their control. However, we got over all of them and we look forward to having the vaccine available to us. We're not in any hurry, our scientists can take their time and make sure everything is thumbs up. I heard yesterday that our scientists had teamed up with Oxford and have come up with a version of the vaccine that is looking to be 100% effective.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Serpent on December 30th, 2020, 12:29 pm 

Mossling » December 30th, 2020, 1:00 am wrote:
As we've discussed here before, the ultimate truth is whether family members are dead or alive. Everything else in between is open to political spin. And when life and death become dependent on the scientific truth, suddenly post-truth is not really a thing anymore, and those scientists become so essential to everyone's 'life or death' truth....

It's all fun and games kicking the truth's ass when there's no covid to contend with, but there is no way to spin the fact that covid did NOT disappear when the spring weather arrived...


Unfortunately, that is not necessarily the case. As with any kind of zealotry, self-delusion can stretch to absolute denial of reality, even when it's literally sitting on the zealot's chest.
https://www.medpagetoday.com/infectiousdisease/covid19/89796

And the glorious German army was reaping heroic victories across the Russian front....
Anything can be spun, provided the audience consists of people who have invested heavily in the leader, been primed to suspend disbelief and the leader repeats the lie forcefully and persistently enough.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on December 30th, 2020, 1:54 pm 

Serpent » December 31st, 2020, 1:29 am wrote:
Mossling » December 30th, 2020, 1:00 am wrote:
As we've discussed here before, the ultimate truth is whether family members are dead or alive. Everything else in between is open to political spin. And when life and death become dependent on the scientific truth, suddenly post-truth is not really a thing anymore, and those scientists become so essential to everyone's 'life or death' truth....

It's all fun and games kicking the truth's ass when there's no covid to contend with, but there is no way to spin the fact that covid did NOT disappear when the spring weather arrived...


Unfortunately, that is not necessarily the case. As with any kind of zealotry, self-delusion can stretch to absolute denial of reality, even when it's literally sitting on the zealot's chest.
https://www.medpagetoday.com/infectiousdisease/covid19/89796

And the glorious German army was reaping heroic victories across the Russian front....
Anything can be spun, provided the audience consists of people who have invested heavily in the leader, been primed to suspend disbelief and the leader repeats the lie forcefully and persistently enough.

Well, sure. Not for very long though.

Post-truth seemed to be in the long-haul before covid hit.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Serpent on December 30th, 2020, 3:43 pm 

It hasn't gone anywhere. There are huge swatches of reality outside of Covid-19. The economic, environmental and political sequelae of the past four years live on; the organizations and communications networks that engendered the past four years are still in operation; the culture of mistrust and discontent is well established.
Truth has a long, steep, obsetacle-strewn road to recovery!
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on December 31st, 2020, 1:16 am 

Serpent » December 31st, 2020, 4:43 am wrote:It hasn't gone anywhere. There are huge swatches of reality outside of Covid-19. The economic, environmental and political sequelae of the past four years live on; the organizations and communications networks that engendered the past four years are still in operation; the culture of mistrust and discontent is well established.
Truth has a long, steep, obsetacle-strewn road to recovery!

Absolutely.

My statement was regarding the 'new paradigm' that was alleged to have been emerging.

In fact, it's not a new tension in terms of social philosophy (it harks back to Socrates Vs the Sophists), but with the surge of more traditionally right wing politics was this attitude seemingly pervading western government as well as 'science' in many areas that the 'holy grail' of scientific truth of previous centuries was a delusion of the past.

Covid has now shown us that a western style modern world government cannot spin a dead relative in any other terms than their society wasn't ready - wasn't rationally governed enough to stop it.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Serpent on December 31st, 2020, 1:22 am 

I hope that's the case.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby TheVat on December 31st, 2020, 1:12 pm 

Or you can try and get as many naive people as possible to join you in blaming China for everything. Never confront a painful truth when a hearty serving of Red Menace will do.

(Cue The Kinks, "Paranoia")
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Forest_Dump on December 31st, 2020, 3:18 pm 

I try to stick with blaming Trump and/or the Republicans for everything. Makes it easier for me and/or my side to avoid the possibility of doing something wrong.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on January 1st, 2021, 1:12 am 

TheVat » January 1st, 2021, 2:12 am wrote:Or you can try and get as many naive people as possible to join you in blaming China for everything. Never confront a painful truth when a hearty serving of Red Menace will do.

(Cue The Kinks, "Paranoia")

Yes. But when there was forewarning and "it'll disappear with the spring weather" blasted out to the masses, that'll be made a lot more difficult for anyone invested in the longevity of their immediate relatives to swallow - if they do care more about their immediate relatives more than China-blaming politicians....

I was just reading an interesting article about Brexit and UK government, and the phrase "journalists as governing politicians" stuck strongly with me - how so many of British politicians have or do find roles in newspapers as writers and editors. Once framed in that way, the problem can be seen more clearly. Even Trump, as an avid twitter user, is effectively operating his own 'outlet' and is jostling for journalistic credibility in amongst all his competitors - the 'fake' guys.

I wonder whether the Socrates vs the Sophists debate is due to return to our stages and take center place in the years to come, as this situation is realised more and more clearly - that government is full of sophists posing as socratics - the truth-spinners vs the genuine truth-seekers.

Just gonna re-run the fun with this graphic:

Image

2021 is going to be such a contrast to the above image, not a complete contrast, of course, but refreshing I am pretty sure - which is good news for the Truth, at least. Perhaps Trump's 'era' will become known as the Truth's 'holocaust' - when Orwell's fears of 'Ignorance is Strength' being touted by quite foreign political forces became a 'home brand' :/ - and all the covid deaths become the great numbers who died in Trump's post-Truth captivity...

_116044966_optimised-us_deaths-nc.png
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on January 2nd, 2021, 7:15 am 

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/202 ... rump-biden
At the beginning of 2021, millions of Americans appear to disagree about one of the most basic facts of their democracy: that Joe Biden won the 2020 presidential election.

The consequences of Donald Trump’s repeated, baseless claims of voter fraud will come in several waves, researchers who study disinformation say, even if Trump ultimately hands over power and leaves the White House. And there is no quick or easy way to fix this crisis, they warn. Because when it comes to dealing with disinformation, simply repeating the facts doesn’t do much to change anyone’s mind.

In the short term, Trump’s false claims about election fraud have weakened Biden’s ability to address the coronavirus pandemic. “If only 20% of the population is like, ‘You’re not my president, I’m going to double down on my mask resistance,’ or ‘I’m going to continue to have parties over the holidays,’ that means we are going to be even less likely to bring this thing under control,” said Whitney Phillips, a professor of communications at Syracuse University.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Serpent on January 2nd, 2021, 11:14 am 

Seems like a good opportunity for major electoral reform. While actually instituted for shutting down Republican tampering and restoring constitutional democracy, it could be spun to the Trumpites as the "elections fraud task force" for which they've been clamouring. They'll buy it if you give the senators on the oversight committee tractor hats with EFTF logo and no effective powers, while the civil service gets on the job.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on January 3rd, 2021, 6:06 am 

Serpent » January 3rd, 2021, 12:14 am wrote:Seems like a good opportunity for major electoral reform. While actually instituted for shutting down Republican tampering and restoring constitutional democracy, it could be spun to the Trumpites as the "elections fraud task force" for which they've been clamouring. They'll buy it if you give the senators on the oversight committee tractor hats with EFTF logo and no effective powers, while the civil service gets on the job.

Sure, and I don't know why for something so important they don't keep everything VISIBLE , ALL OF THE TIME, and recorded with cameras with live feed to internet. Transparent walls, transparent boxes, etc. Otherwise it just offers itself up to conspiracy theories.

What's good for relatively minor actors in Guantanamo is good enough for also keeping a watch on the alleged major 'fraudster' actors.

Disputing election results has become standard fare in such politics now. The ritual and purpose is too sacred not to be taken more seriously and WATCHFULLY.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Serpent on January 3rd, 2021, 11:12 am 

...um... You know that in the late unlamented Soviet Union, that's exactly how elections were conducted? No walls, no secrecy, just put your X there, comerade. The Communist party won with 99% of the vote and the mines of Siberia never suffered a worker shortage.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on January 3rd, 2021, 8:40 pm 

Serpent » January 4th, 2021, 12:12 am wrote:...um... You know that in the late unlamented Soviet Union, that's exactly how elections were...

I don't think the West is quite that far gone yet, lol.

The C word is still more unacceptable than another c word - covid, and perhaps as 'rude' as the real c word!
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby JohnD on January 6th, 2021, 4:19 pm 

I'm sure most people have heard and seen pictures of the invasion of parliament by Trump supporters. This is now very near to a civil war. When one side of politics is willing to invade parliament in any country it has to be taken seriously. We may well look at third-world countries and small island nations doing this and the results they produce, but to see it happen to a major world power the question has to be asked, "where to now?"
It must be understood that when this happens anywhere else in the world it is called an attempted coup de tat. This is no less serious.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Serpent on January 6th, 2021, 5:38 pm 

What? Parliament, too? I know there was a big pro-Trump parade in Toronto - and gods know how many supporters he has in the west?
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby TheVat on January 6th, 2021, 7:45 pm 

Mod note: the United States is not a parliamentary democracy. It's possible John was referring to the United States Congress when he wrote "parliament."

Busy elsewhere, will comment later. Sad to report the shooting victim has died.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Serpent on January 6th, 2021, 10:10 pm 

TheVat » January 6th, 2021, 6:45 pm wrote:Mod note: the United States is not a parliamentary democracy. It's possible John was referring to the United States Congress when he wrote "parliament."

I caught on, eventually. When I first read that post, I had just been listening to a Canadian reporter talk about Trump support here. I didn't really believe they'd make that kind of move, but they might well threaten to.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby JohnD on January 7th, 2021, 1:46 am 

Apologies, mistakenly applying local political standards.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Serpent on January 7th, 2021, 1:55 am 

I hear they have four deaths now.
And at least some people are calling this what is.
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