Worzels World - The question of fake news
Throughout the course of human history there has always been fake news. The first recorded instance of fake news was when a serpent told Eve that if she ate of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil she would become as God. A quick look around at the world today will show how well that one turned out.
Today standards of honesty and integrity have sunk lower than they have ever been in my lifetime. There is so much fakery and sham around that for all I know green lipped mussels may simply be ordinary ones wearing lipstick.
Political dishonesty is taken for granted. We are desensitised to it and do not even get angry about it anymore. When irrefutable evidence of lies, manipulation, lawlessness and ‘dirty politics’ was revealed by Greenwald, Snowden, Hager and Wikileaks prior to our last election many people still voted for the currant corrupt cabal.
Almost all advertising is fake news. Persil washes whiter than white is not only a lie it is also nonsense.
The National Party touted a ‘brighter future’ at the last election and this has been the most overcast spring both actually and metaphorically that I can remember. And what happened to our ten bridges?
The TPPA is branded as a ‘Free Trade Agreement’, when in fact it is a collection of rules and regulations that amount to anything but free trade. Sadly when the corporate media raise concerns about ‘fake news’ it is a case of the pot calling the kettle whiter than white.
Truthful news and commentary is hard to find these days. Useful and trustworthy information seems only incidental to media preoccupation with titillation and entertainment. It is a type of mass hypnotism that gradually dumbs down and desensitises the victim classes. These days the most intellectually engaging part of that once worthy publication the New Zealand Herald is the crossword.
We know that mainstream media asserts many things that are directly contradicted by what has become known as alternative media. An example of this would be the assertions that Russian hacking altered the outcome of the US elections. Yet none have addressed the elephant in that particular room. No one disputed that the hacked and subsequently leaked material was true. Regardless of whether this was hacked by the Russians or some other party they should be thanked for giving us that rarest of commodities in the modern media – the truth.
Allegations against Russia were made by the CIA, an organisation well known for generating false information – WMD’s in Iraq for instance. Wikileaks, who have yet to be caught lying about anything, maintain that the information was received from a ‘non-state actor’. I know who I believe.
That Russia spies on the US is as certain as the Five Eyes network (Canada, New Zealand, USA, Britain and Australia) spies on everyone it can, including you and me. The only difference is that when Russia do it, it is called hacking; when the US and her allies do it, it is called surveillance.
Once truth and the telling of it was considered a virtue. Indeed truthfulness is the single most important factor in all human relations. When the general public learns the truth about their leaders, the running
of their country and the management of their affairs it is not simply a good thing, a lofty but unattainable abstract idea. No, it is an absolutely essential ingredient for a functional society.
In order for democracy and a rule of law to survive we must have reliable sources of information prepared to tell us the truth. The likes if Assange, Snowden, and the rare investigative journalist who still ferrets out the truth should be lauded. Instead they are hounded by governments who persecute and prosecute them. It seems it is an offence to tell the truth. But then the truth can offend, especially if that truth contradicts a prevalent politically correct zeitgeist that has spread like an evil treacle through the Western World.
An absence of truth leads to a breakdown in trust. When there is no trust there can no longer be reliable communication. When there is an inability to reliably communicate it is no longer possible for humans to cooperate and work effectively together. This is why the most important thing for the maintenance and continuance of the human species is honesty.
We are never going to overcome the oil crisis, the pollution crisis, the food and water crises, and all the various other crises without first overcoming the trust crisis. And that can only be done by knowing and dealing in the truth.
In order for democracy and a rule of law to survive we must have reliable sources of information prepared to tell us the truth.