Glenn Greenwald: Trump’s critics can do him no bigger favor than using dubious, discredited tactics to attack him.
“The legitimate and effective tactics for opposing Trump are being utterly drowned by these irrational, desperate, ad hoc crusades that have no cogent strategy and make his opponents appear increasingly devoid of reason and gravity. Right now, Trump’s opponents are behaving as media critic Adam Johnson described: as ideological jelly fish, floating around aimlessly and lost, desperately latching on to whatever barge randomly passes by…”
George Soros Finances Group Helping Facebook Flag ‘Disputed’ Stories
The organization partnered with Facebook to help determine whether a certain story is “disputed” is financed by billionaire George Soros and a slew of other left-wing funders.
The “International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN)” drafted a code of five principles for news websites to accept, and Facebook yesterday announced it will work with “third-party fact checking organizations” that are signatories to the code of principles.
Facebook says that if the “fact checking organizations” determine that a certain story is fake, it will get flagged as disputed and, according to the Facebook announcement, “there will be a link to the corresponding article explaining why. Stories that have been disputed may also appear lower in News Feed.”
IFCN is hosted by the Poynter Institute for Media Studies. A cursory search of the Poynter Institute website finds that Poynter’s IFCN is openly funded by Soros’ Open Society Foundations as well as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Google, and the National Endowment for Democracy.
Poynter’s IFCN is also funded by the Omidyar Network, which is the nonprofit for liberal billionaire eBay founder Pierre Omidyar. The Omidyar Network has partnered with the Open Society on numerous projects and it has given grants to third parties using the Soros-funded Tides Foundation. Tides is one of the largest donors to left-wing causes in the U.S.
Another significant Poynter Institute donor is the Craig Newmark Foundation, the charitable organization established by Craigslist Founder Craig Newmark. On Monday, just days before the announcement of the Facebook partnership, Poynter issued a press release revealing that Newmark donated $1 million to the group to fund a faculty chair in journalism ethics.
States the press release:
The gift will support a five-year program at Poynter that focuses on verification, fact-checking and accountability in journalism. It’s the largest donation Poynter’s ever received from an individual foundation.
The Newmark Chair will expand on Poynter’s teaching in journalism ethics and develop certification programs for journalists that commit to ethical decision-making practices. The faculty member will also organize an annual conference on ethics issues at Poynter and be a regular contributor to Poynter.org.
Newmark funds scores of liberal groups also financed by Soros, including the Sierra Club, the New America Foundation, and the Sunlight Foundation.
Soros has earned his megafortune in part by short selling currencies and causing economic crises. He is credited with breaking the pound on September 16, 1992 in a day that became known in Britain as “Black Wednesday.” He reportedly made $1.2 billion from that crisis. In 2002, he was convicted for insider trading.
Poynter, meanwhile, has hosted controversial journalism programs in the past, including one that was accused of downplaying the threat of global Islamic terrorism. FoxNews.com reported the course suggested reporters “keep the death toll from Islamic terrorism in ‘context’ by comparing that toll to the number of people killed every year by malaria, HIV/AIDS and other factors.”
The course taught reporters that the term “jihad” means internal struggle, and it discussed what it claimed was the issue of “right-wing activists” attempting to link American Muslims to terrorism.
The section includes the good-journalism tip that reporters should check to see if experts they’re interviewing “have a bias or a stake in the story you are covering.” But then it only cites examples of anti-Muslim groups.
The course in Islam, Fox News reported, was supported by a group calling itself the Social Science Research Council, which has received funding from Soros-financed groups.
In response to the report, the Poynter Institute explained that it created the course “as a tool for journalists who want to be accurate in educating their audience about the religion and culture of Islam, Muslim communities in the U.S., and the distinctions between Islam as a political movement and the radical philosophies that inspire militant Islamists.”
“We believe there is a need to better understand the complexities of Muslim societies and the online course offered by Poynter and Washington State University is a vital resource toward that end,” Poynter added.
“The values underpinning the course are truth, accuracy, independence, fairness, minimizing harm and context — the core journalistic values on which we build all our teaching here at Poynter.”
Poynter’s IFCN code of principles for news outlets, meanwhile, reads as follows:
1. A COMMITMENT TO NONPARTISANSHIP AND FAIRNESS
We fact-check claims using the same standard for every fact check. We do not concentrate our fact-checking on any one side. We follow the same process for every fact check and let the evidence dictate our conclusions. We do not advocate or take policy positions on the issues we fact-check.
2. A COMMITMENT TO TRANSPARENCY OF SOURCES
We want our readers to be able to verify our findings themselves. We provide all sources in enough detail that readers can replicate our work, except in cases where a source’s personal security could be compromised. In such cases, we provide as much detail as possible.
3. A COMMITMENT TO TRANSPARENCY OF FUNDING & ORGANIZATION
We are transparent about our funding sources. If we accept funding from other organizations, we ensure that funders have no influence over the conclusions we reach in our reports. We detail the professional background of all key figures in our organization and explain our organizational structure and legal status. We clearly indicate a way for readers to communicate with us.
4. A COMMITMENT TO TRANSPARENCY OF METHODOLOGY
We explain the methodology we use to select, research, write, edit, publish and correct our fact checks. We encourage readers to send us claims to fact-check and are transparent on why and how we fact-check.
5. A COMMITMENT TO OPEN AND HONEST CORRECTIONS
We publish our corrections policy and follow it scrupulously. We correct clearly and transparently in line with our corrections policy, seeking so far as possible to ensure that readers see the corrected version.
With research by Joshua Klein and Brenda J. Elliott.
‘Progressives are being admonished to support Hillary because Bernie says they should, but new leak drops seem to indicate that he was “leveraged” into it.’
‘On May 26, 2015, Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook sent an email to campaign chairman John Podesta titled “Sanders criticism” expressing displeasure at some mild insinuations the Vermont senator had made about the Clintons’ massive wealth. Mook is the same man the Observer reports was already conspiring to rig the Democratic primary in April of 2014 by manipulating the scheduling of state primaries, as evidenced by this email, also from the Podesta leaks…’
‘People trust the “unbiased” internet search giant Google so much it can actually influence up to 10 million undecided voters to choose Hillary Clinton for president, prominent US psychologist and author Robert Epstein told RT following years of research.’
‘Despite being a supporter of the Democratic presidential nominee, Dr. Epstein believes Google’s unchecked algorithm of placing one candidate over the other in search results constitutes a “threat to democracy”.’
“They’re doing so in ways that shortchange taxpayers.”
“Concerns about the inner workings of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have been mounting in recent months amid disclosures of cozy corporate alliances. Now a group of more than a dozen senior scientists have reportedly lodged an ethics complaint alleging the federal agency is being influenced by corporate and political interests in ways that shortchange taxpayers…”
Continue reading: The CDC is being influenced by corporate and political interests
‘His people will think they’ve “won” something from the Party Establishment’
A newly released Wikileaks email from the Podesta hack reveals a plan by Clinton surrogates to fool “bitching” Bernie Sanders voters into supporting Hillary by offering them a largely meaningless change in rules that apply to superdelegates.
The email was sent by Hillary’s former chief on staff Tamera Luzzatto on March 20 of this year. The recipients included Podesta, the chairman of Clinton’s campaign, and Robby Mook, her campaign manager.
Luzzatto forwards “Sanders-related advice from Mark Siegel,” the former Palm Beach County Democratic Party Chairman.
In the email, Siegel explains how Bernie’s “sometimes self-righteous ideologues” could be fooled “to go home happy and enthusiastic in working their asses off for Hillary.”
“So here’s my idea. Bernie and his people have been bitching about super delegates and the huge percentage that have come out for Hillary,” wrote Siegel.
“Why not throw Bernie a bone and reduce the super delegates in the future to the original draft of members of the House and Senate, governors and big city mayors, eliminating the DNC members who are not State chairs or vice-Chairs. (Frankly, DNC members don’t really represent constituencies anyway. I should know. I served on the DNC first as Executive Director and then as an elected member for 10 years.)
So if we “give” Bernie this in the Convention’s rules committee, his people will think they’ve “won” something from the Party Establishment. And it functionally doesn’t make any difference anyway. They win. We don’t lose. Everyone is happy.”
In other words, Bernie supporters could be offered some symbolic ‘victory’ that actually means nothing at all in order to trick them into becoming Hillary supporters.
Luzzatto shared the email with Mook and Podesta “as a favor and cause of his role in the Dems’ delegate system.”
The email will further enrage Bernie Sanders supporters, whom Hillary Clinton referred to as “basement dwellers” that had bought into a “false promise” in an audio recording that emerged earlier this month.
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“A team of DIY enthusiasts calling themselves Four Thieves Vinegar have published plans that will allow anyone to build a device to self-inject epinephrine on the cheap.”
Continue reading: It Costs $30 to Make a DIY EpiPen.
“Those who want Silicon Valley tech giants to be arbiters of political speech are playing with fire.”
“These are the 50 hospitals in the United States with the highest markup of prices over their actual costs. That means that they are charging out-of-network patients and the uninsured, as well as auto and workers’ compensation insurers, more than 10 times the costs allowed by Medicare, according to new research published Monday.”
“Most scholars and analysts conclude that, particularly when fully accounting for the various government subsidies for individual insurance coverage, the ACA significantly increased individual market premiums.”