If you’re old enough, you will remember that the one book everyone had in the house was a dictionary. If you didn’t know the meaning or context of a word, you looked it up in the dictionary. Flash homes even had a book called a “Thesaurus”, which was like a dictionary but it was printed upside down or something… damn, I should have looked that word up in a dictionary to find out maybe…
But dictionaries, like encyclopedias, were the standard references that everyone used and, more or less, every dictionary or encyclopedia had much the same definitions and information. And businesses who wrote and sold dictionaries and encyclopedias staked their reputation on the contents of their product. Can you imagine how quickly the Acme Encyclopedia Company’s shares would dissolve if it was discovered that under their entry for the word “Euthanasia”, they wrote “Young chinese people”.
They might get away with that now, for just a few years back we were been told of the previously unknown existance of things called “alternative facts.”
Nowadays, alot fewer people have dictionaries or encyclopedias in book form. We can just “google it” now, and usually we get presented with something from “Wikipedia” which is much easier to spell than Encyclopedia.
Wikipedia is an okay place to start when looking for information but it’s too unreliable to stop reading there. I read a great description of wikipedia recently, with a columnist calling it, “the public bathroom wall” of the internet. That was a spot on observation I thought. And witty.
Because although you can get factual and useful information scribbled on a public bathroom wall, it might even be exactly what you’re looking for that day, but you wouldn’t want to base your life around it.
Information is now democratized, one of the few things in life that actually is. Facts are not autonomous entities anymore, considered solely on their own merit, but are simply what the majority of people can be convinced that they are. In many cases, just what a single person writes on wikipedia. A writer no one has heard of, knows anything about or even cares about – the information is free and fast – and that’s all that is important !
Wikipedia always comes first in your Google search, which is probably no coincidence. That is where most people stop. They never read from the next cubicle wall or from the bulletin board outside in the sunshine.
Even “fact checking” – quite the darling of the “respectable” media these days is often misleading, as I have seen “fact checked” claims that are false or misleading to start with.
For example, there are many aspects of the death of Diana Spenser, former Princess of Wales, that merit serious attention. But they don’t get any attention. Why not?
It simply makes no sense at all that perhaps the most famous and most admired and topical lady in the world, the mother of the future British King, a much loved “celebrity” and royal figure, dies in unusual circumstances overseas and the British government DOES NOT initiate their legal responsibilty to conduct a full and immediate enquiry into her death. Huh? How can that be?
Even if it was an unknown Harrods shop assisstant who died in unusual circumstances in a Paris tunnel, UK law says the government must conduct an enquiry into the death. And here was the most “followed” person in the western world who was killed, and the British government broke the law by not conducting an immediate enquiry.
It is simply not possible under any circumstances remotely considered “normal” that the aftermath to Diana’s death would have happened the way it did. “Normal” would have been the exact opposite of what happened. Normal would have been that no stone was left unturned, no tiny detail overlooked in finding out what exactly happened to “England’s Rose.” That is what would have been normal. But the opposite of normal happened. Why?
Note – I am not advocating either way on the death of Diana. All that I am noting by using this example is a phenomena that I have also seen used on other highly contentious issues. That is, substituting a misleading and fairly preposterous claim in order to successfully “debunk” or deflect attention away from another related, but much more serious issue.
In the Diana case, one of the common claims doing the rounds was that Prince Phillip had instructed MI6 to kill Diana. A few nutters might have promoted this story but it’s not the claim that was being promoted by more serious observers or a claim I thought had any merit. Therefore, of course, it is fairly easy to debunk this silly claim. And it was. And for many people that would be the end of the story. But eliminating Prince Philip’s involvement is not the same thing as eliminating MI6 involvement, or any other.
No serious person was claiming that Prince Philip had anything to do with Diana’s death. But MI6 ? That is a different story. And a story, if it exists at all, that seems to have been dealth with for now.
Debunking can only be taken seriously if the claim being debunked is an accurate portrayal and hypothesis of real events in the first place. In many cases they aren’t. Therefore the debunked status of a bogus claim is not of any value either. Where to turn to?
Well not to our wonderful mainstream media outlets, which often make Wikipedia look positively “Shakespearian” in comparison.
Simple innocuous information is no longer “presented” by the media – it is “revealed.” Trivial occurrances, usually involving a reality TV show or a celebrity, are labelled “shocking”.
What does all this shocking revelation do to our world?
Well, when things are in chaos, when ordinary people are constantly bombarded with sensational but flakey headlines about nothing at all, they get desensitized to real events that should be genuinely shocking and sensational, like bogus wars and the resulting mass murder of innocent people. Or like government abetted genocide of children in civilized, white western nations like Canada.
Julian Assange “reveals” information like this and he is paying a very heavy price for it, maybe he will pay for it with his life.
The evening news or the front page of our daily newspapers rarely reveal anything of consequence. In fact, they hide the truely imortant. They portray some nobody as having suffered a shocking event in their life – an event that could happen to all of us – and it is presented by highly trained newsreaders who “emote” the news, not simply present it. As if it needed presenting in the first place. Our TV newsreaders in New Zealand have been trained in this high art of “emoting” – a form of propaganda really – several decades ago by American media specialists.
What all this means is that many people react to the news of another unprovoked American atrocity in the same way they react to the latest pics of Adele’s “shocking” weight loss. Or weight gain. It doesn’t matter which. As long as it is trivial.
Genuinely and truely shocking man made global events become invisible. Tolerable. Even quasi supported. Passive acceptance of an atrocity is a form of support for it.
“They must have had it coming to them….”
“That is always happening over there…”
“Well, we can’t do anything about it….”
If it was Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin who originally said the following, then he was a highly perceptive person, as well as a maniac,
“One death is a tragedy, a million deaths are simply a statistic.”Joseph Stalin
Deception and crime thrives in chaos.
Deception and crime are universal concepts working together. How do pick pockets often operate? Or shop lifters? By deception, then crime. One person distracts you with some pleasant banter whilst their associate steals your property. In the case of the USA, the deception is not carried out on the victims of the attack as in petty crime – the American victims die. The deception of the American government is aimed at the people who would take to the streets if they ever woke up from their mass delusion, as they did during America’s invasion of Vietnam. These are the good people who actually fund the atrocity.
I’m not sure ordinary people really comprehend that these ongoing global atrocities are being carried out in their name, by their representatives that they freely vote for, and who use their hard earned tax money to pay giant weapons manufacturers.
Some brilliant comedians and philosophers like American George Carlin, who died in 2008, tried his whole life to wake people up to what was being done in their name. They all had a good laugh at his shows, but I don’t think many of the laughing crowd realized that, yes, YOU – he WAS talking to YOU.
George Carlin : “Bombing people is our hobby now”
If anything here makes any sense to you please share it with a friend or family member and ask their opinion. Knowledge really is power.
Thanks for listening.