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Facebook learns their fake news flagging system had opposite effect, switches tactics

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Facebook learns their fake news flagging system had opposite effect switches tactics

In a corrective move that is both unexpected and mildly amusing, Facebook has changed the way it will fight “fake news.” Their recent experience with the “Disputed Flag” proved not only ineffective but at times actually made people more likely to click on a story.

It took an academic study for Facebook to realize the common sense reality that if you tell people not to look at something, many will instantly want to look at it.

Their next attempt to tackle fake news will be to put related articles next to stories that would have been flagged as disputed. This will allow people more context. They will also continue doing what they did originally which is to push anything deemed to be fake news down lower in users’ news feeds. This, they claim, has reduced views by 80% once it happens, but it can often take more than a day.

Here’s the video they put out about it last week:

My Take

I am adamantly opposed to fake news, but I do not trust Facebook to be the gatekeeper, nor do I believe their “reliable fact checkers” like PolitiFact are unbiased. They’re clearly not. The left-leaning organization uses left-leaning fact checkers to keep what they deem as fake out of reach from the general public.

Do we even need gatekeepers at all? To some extent, yes. False reports and incorrect assessments are rampant on the internet and affect both sides of the political aisle. For every alleged instance of right-wing manipulation of the facts, there’s a left-winger pushing in the opposite direction.

The problem is in finding trusted gatekeepers. There really aren’t any, at least not with enough prominence to make a real difference. Until something better emerges, it’s important to remain diligent in promoting the real news. That’s one of the reasons I write for this site.

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Conservatism

The complete fraud that is National Socialist Healthcare

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The complete fraud that is National Socialist Healthcare

The home state of Mr. ‘Medifail for All’ tried National Socialist healthcare and it didn’t work. What is the point of ever trying it again?

One would think that the operation of a socialist health care system in the home of Bernie ‘Medifail for all’ Sanders would be touted until the bovines hit the barn. Well, one would be wrong in that assumption since it never worked as advertised.

The Washington Post recently profiled the rise and spectacular fall of ‘Green Mountain Care’ from the fantastic promises at its inception to its inevitable crash as is the case with every socialist system. The Vermont rendition of single payer – a state version of National Socialist Healthcare – came onto the scene with great promise and fanfare. The problem is that states are forbidden to counterfeit [oops! ‘print’] currency, so they quickly ran out of other people’s money and the whole rotten edifice collapsed.

Why Vermont’s single-payer effort failed and what Democrats can learn from it
Three and a half years after then-Gov. Peter Shumlin of Vermont signed into law a vision for the nation’s first single-payer health system, his small team was still struggling to find a way to pay for it.

Two days later, on Dec. 17, 2014, Shumlin, a Democrat who had swept into office promising a health-care system that left no one uninsured, announced he was giving up.

The trajectory of Green Mountain Care, as Vermont’s health system was to be known — from the euphoric spring of 2011 to its crash landing in late 2014 — offers sobering lessons for the current crop of Democrats running for president, including Vermont’s own Sen. Bernie Sanders (I), most of whom embrace Medicare-for-all or other aspirations for universal insurance coverage.

[Our Emphasis]
Oddly enough, the local socialist Senator rarely mentions this when trying to sell everyone else on this statist snake oil. Those with a modicum of intelligence tend to learn from the colossal mistakes of others, implementing what works while rejecting that which does not. Then there are those on the Left who insanely insist on repeating those mistakes, hoping for a counterintuitive outcome.

This is no academic exercise, born of the Platonic dialogs from 2,400 years ago on the ‘Ideal state’. This is a deadly serious matter with millions of people’s lives at stake. Not to mention that as reported by the Associated-Press that ‘Medicare for all’ was projected to cost $32.6 trillion.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Sen. Bernie Sanders’ “Medicare for all” plan would boost government health spending by $32.6 trillion over 10 years, requiring historic tax hikes, says a study released Monday by a university-based libertarian policy center.

That’s trillion with a “T.”

Optimal conditions – and single payer still failed

One couldn’t ask for better conditions for this failed experiment in state socialist health care. The same report from the Washington post on this failed experiment noted that:

It has some of the nation’s healthiest residents, with some of the lowest rates of uninsured. It is small and homogeneous. It shares a border with Canada, putting an existing single-payer system within sight. And it has just one main insurer, the nonprofit Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont, repeatedly ranked the most efficient Blue Cross Blue Shield plan in the nation.

It was supposed to lower costs, insure more people while eliminating waste, fraud and abuse [Stop us if you’ve heard this joke before]. Unsurprisingly, it failed to do this. Nevertheless, the hometown senator of this communist catastrophe still touts the same ‘features’ in trying to sell his $32.6 trillion pipe dream.

Unfortunately for the purveyors of these plans presumably fueled by pixie dust and allusions to brand new ‘rights’ conjured up out of thin air the author of the piece failed to offer a solution aside from ‘controlling costs’ [read: death panels] or counterfeiting.. er.. ‘printing’ more money to endlessly throw into the bottomless pit that is the government.

It ran into all manner of problems, including what to do with people coming in over the border for all the free goodies [Stop us if you’ve also heard this one before]. Ever increasing tax rates hobbling the economy, ending with the fact that the costs of a bloated bureaucracy would mean less coverage that what the people already had.

Ironically enough, when the whole system died an inglorious death, Bernie Sanders was in Iowa testing the presidential waters, never mentioning the failure of single payer in his home state, the very idea that he incessantly touts. Why bother with facts and logic when one can just invoke counterfeit civil rights, paid for with other people’s money?

Meanwhile, the ‘objective’ media cheerleads for socialistic slavery

Still, this hasn’t stopped the ever ‘objective’ national socialist media from writing ‘News’ stories on the subject, such as this sickening saccharine piece from the Associated-Press ‘Medicare for All’s’ rich benefits ‘leapfrog’ other nations.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Generous benefits. No copays. No need for private policies. The “Medicare for All” plan advocated by leading 2020 Democrats appears more lavish than what’s offered in other advanced countries, compounding the cost but also potentially broadening its popular appeal.

Reading that infomercial for socialism, one can almost imagine the rise of a superhero in the guise of a later-day superman. The virtual embodiment of every wonderful feature of ‘Medifail for all’ vanquishing every cost overrun, taking down the ever evil private health insurance monster, providing free healthcare for all while dispensing Mocha Lattes on the side.

Faster than a speeding cost overrun. More powerful than free enterprise. Able to heap benefits to all in a single bound.

Look! Up in the sky! It’s a bird. It’s a plane It’s Single payer socialism! Here to save the day…. Until it implodes the economy.

After which, no one is helped.  How is that compassion?

Single payer can never work

Sadly, the author of the Washington post piece failed to cite how to get the bloated edifice off the ground. This is because there is no way to get it to fly.

The proper way to address this problem is to try a different direction, away from authoritarian socialism and towards economic Liberty. Conjuring up new civil rights does little to pay for all the freebies. As way experienced with a single payer experiment under ideal conditions, the end result was worse than what already existed.

There is no point in trying something that is doomed to failure, single payer [or whatever it’s called] can never work as advertised.

The Takeaway

It should be obvious that a governmental solution to the problem does not exist. Thus, it only makes sense to try a different approach. This won’t empower the Socialist-Left, but they claim to only have everyone’s best interests at heart. Let them show that is the case with a system based on economic Liberty instead of socialistic slavery.

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Healthcare

Shocking NY Times headline calls evil good and good evil

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Shocking NY Times headline calls evil good and good evil

Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! – Isaiah 5:20

There are four tactics favored by many mainstream media outlets, including the NY Times, that help them fulfill their two primary goals. Let’s start with their goals since they’re blatant: get more eyeballs for their paid subscription model and help Democrats win elections.

How do they do this? They have standard journalistic strategies that work for them well because they’ve been around for so long. They have access to people, manpower to cover stories, and resources to acquire assets necessary to make their stories popular. Those are the positive strategies they use, strategies that every news outlet strives to benefit from to various degrees. But they also use four tactics that help them with their secondary goal of pushing the left’s agenda:

  1. Shock headlines. While they rarely go as far as smaller outlets or tabloids, they are masters among the “big boys” at generating headlines to make their points.
  2. Credible experts with an agenda. One can argue that this is a technique all good outlets use to push their various agendas, but nobody is as adept at it as the New York Times. For example, if they’re pushing global warming, they get the best activists with science studies degrees to push the narrative.
  3. Manipulative statistics. Again, this is a common tactic, but the NY Times has mastered it. They have stat-finders on staff who comb the various studies of the world to find data that supports their premise. If that sounds natural, let’s not forget the idea should be the other way around. They should use statistics to form their premise.
  4. Begging the question. Contrary to the popular use of the phrase, it actually refers to a logical fallacy in which a premise becomes the basis of evidence for the premise. Similar to circular reasoning, it assumes a disputed notion to be factually correct.

In one editorial they published yesterday, they used the four tactics all at once. The title of the story is, “Pregnancy Kills. Abortion Saves Lives.”

I won’t link to it.

The article itself is an exercise in begging the question. For the statement in the headline to be remotely true, one has to assume that the preborn baby that’s aborted is not a life. If it were a life, then the statement would be (and in fact, is) ludicrous.

Of course, it obviously makes excellent use of the first tactic, the shock headline. I rarely read anything from their news outlet anymore, but it got me to click through and read it. When I did, I realized exactly what they were doing. First, they used the second tactic, a credible expert with an agenda, to not only help with the article but to actually write it. In this case, the expert is Dr. Warren M. Hern. His expertise is being a physician and epidemiologist who specializes in late-abortion “services.”

Dr. Hern proceeds to use the third tactic, manipulative statistics, to make his point that abortions are less likely to kill the mother than pregnancy or childbirth. Is it true? Absolutely. I learned this myself when my wife nearly died as our fifth child was lost in a miscarriage. Both pregnancy and childbirth are risks to mothers, much more so than abortions.

Nobody can dispute this fact. But the way this fact and others are framed, such as a statistic showing African-American women were more likely to die as a result of pregnancy than Caucasian women, were intended to be terrifying to mothers and to support his claim that pregnancy kills the mother at a higher rate than abortion.

But again, his entire argument relies on the notion that the child in the womb is not actually a life.

We are faced with a society in which a large percentage feel the same way. They have to in order to maintain their own self-perception of not doing harm to another human. Otherwise, abortion becomes murder. The only way it can’t be seen as murder is if the baby inside the mother isn’t seen as life.

This is why it’s so very important we start looking at abortion in America as more than just a political or even religious issue. It’s a cultural issue, one in which we are failing to deliver the right message. Most people can be made to appreciate the value of the life within the womb if they’re allowed to look beyond the politics. They are getting bombarded with the same two messages. Pro-abortion activists say they’re defending women’s rights. Pro-life activists say they’re defending the baby’s rights. Both arguments can have merit based on how a person perceives the baby in the womb. If it’s seen as a life, it’s hard to say that life has no right to live. If it’s seen as a parasite, clump of cells, or “potential” human, then the rights of the mother prevail.

Articles like this one in the NY Times are meant to change the way culture perceives abortion. We must fight back by continuing to push reality, that a baby in the womb is a life. We have the truth on our side. It’s time to use it.

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Democrats

Why Democrats will drag out impeachment for as long as they possibly can

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Why Democrats will drag out impeachment for as long as they possibly can

Democrats have been playing a dangerous game of politicizing their efforts towards and against impeachment ever since they won control of the House of Representatives with the 2018 midterm elections. They have all the information they need in order to make a definitive decision about whether to impeach President Trump, but they continue to delay. Their reason is very plain: They want the news cycle to stay focused on their efforts until something else other than illegal immigration can come along and save them.

We’ve actually talked about this once or twice before, but it bears repeating and reframing as more the process evolves.

The crisis at our southern border has been untenable for several months as reports of increases in migrants and decreases in options make it crystal clear the policies of the Democrats and the failure of the Republicans to change them have encouraged the breach of our borders. The blame may fall on both sides’ failures over time, but the current stance of the GOP and the constant proclamations of the President put the full brunt of the responsibility on the left’s open borders policies.

Whether Americans support impeachment or not is actually irrelevant to the Democrats. They want things to stay in the middle on the issue, ebbing and flowing between support and opposition. The longer they can keep the media focused on their latest set of subpoenas or new voices calling for impeachment, the easier it is for them to ignore the border crisis. It’s their crisis. They own it. But they don’t want to pay politically in either direction for it.

They can’t do anything about it because doing so would be to admit the President was right. They can’t ignore it indefinitely because eventually it will be so big that mainstream media will be forced to move impeachment talks to page two while they focus on the crisis. Between the two options, Democrats are hoping to avoid the second by ignoring the first. They believe if they can keep media looking at the Mueller report and screaming about obstruction, something will eventually happen that’s even bigger than the border crisis. War with Iran? Economic collapse? Big mass shooting? Another abortion bill? Whatever it is, they’re using impeachment talk to fill in the gaps.

Democrats have to keep talking about impeachment and doing impeachment-related activities without actually impeaching. Once they pull the trigger, it’ll be over soon enough and Americans will look at other news like the border crisis.

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