Screamin’ In The New Year!

January 1, 2024

Happy New Year!

In the evening of the first day.

This new year has all the earmarks of being truly remarkable, and hopefully not really dangerous. However, given the situation of nowadays, that’s a tall order, especially with a crazy, violent underbelly foaming with vicious hatred of everything not of them. Although there’s room for hope, the reason pressure comes with knowledge is that there’s an enormous chunk of Americans who are pieces of shit.

And even if T-Rump loses the election, there’s shit still to be exploded:

One major factor (beyond the actual insanity) is the acceptance of lying as a mode of communication. Another example of that huge chuck of pieces of shit o is the lie and the spread of misinformation in the very face of the lie. In response, the lies and bullshit has to be pointed out and revealed constantly — an expert needed.

Such as: Kate Starbird, co-founder of the University of Washington’s Center for an Informed Public, in an interview published this morning at the Guardian — high-point quotes: ‘“In a few years, I’ll look back and say it was a really valuable perspective … Because I’ve seen campaigns that were extremely effective at using disinformation to smear the reputation of people – so much so that I’ve seen someone that I was studying take his own life. I know that the stakes are really high in these spaces … It was really weird to watch how they so effectively created this false narrative. It was frustrating,” she said. “And then at some point, you step back and you’re like, ‘You gotta appreciate their craft – good at what they did … The influencers, political elites on the right, have embraced those lies, which is one of the reasons that they spread further … So this is an asymmetric phenomenon. Now, they may argue and say that they’re not false, and it’s really hard to have a conversation if you don’t have a shared view of reality.”

Starbird, a misinformation researcher was also once the subject of an ongoing misinformation campaign …

… fears that the election fraud narrative has now “sunk in” so deeply for so many Americans on the right that it could end up creating worse laws and procedures – and actually increase the possibility of a successful foreign interference campaign in US elections.

“Right now, we’ve got a space where we may be in a ‘Boy who cried wolf’ situation, where there’s so much misinformation about election integrity that if we have a true threat, we may miss it,” Starbird said.

Still, despite the loud voices on the right continuing to spread disinformation about elections, Starbird thinks the people who got drawn into those narratives before might be a little savvier now, perhaps less likely to fall for some of the “more extravagant” claims again.

“I am hopeful that we’ve seen the worst of it,” she said. “I’m not confident we’ve seen the worst of it.”

The coming year will be a weird one, to say the least. And that Japanese 7.6 earthquake to start that day this morning maybe a precursor to how the next 12 months will play out — horror and destruction, or maybe just horror, hold the shaker.

In the hope, maybe this will be the year — most like will be anyway:

A memorable year, or not, yet once again here we are…

(Illustration out front: Edvard Munch‘s ‘The Scream,’ lithograph version, found here.)

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