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Category: Media Propaganda

Journalism: “Fears of economic recession could derail the holiday shopping season – MarketWatch”

Journalism: “Fears of economic recession could derail the holiday shopping season – MarketWatch”

The headline comes from a survey finding consumers are concerned about a future recession. Public opinion polls, particularly when asking people to express an opinion on subjects of which they have neither expert nor first hand knowledge, are primarily measuring the effectiveness of prior propaganda messaging. In this example, 2019 has been filled with a stream of news reports predicting a recession. In fact, these predictions have been underway for years. And they have been wrong – particularly since no one has demonstrated any skill in accurately forecasting future recessions. But they are effective at shaping public opinion, which could result in consumers changing their behavior in ways that reduce economic activity.


The headline story is itself followed by a sequence of upbeat economic news. In fact, 2019 holiday sales are running 15% above the prior year, to date.

Journalism: Activist launching propaganda news service to deliver fake local news, share-able on social media

Journalism: Activist launching propaganda news service to deliver fake local news, share-able on social media

A Democratic party activist is launching a well funded fake local news operation, modeled to a degree, on the Russian Internet Research Agency, to deliver biased or news stories to targeted individuals on Facebook and other social media. The operation will collect data directly from Facebook on who is reading their fake news, and will data mine that to target more people. Do you feel like you are being manipulated yet?

Journalism: Bloomberg News self identifies as a #Bloomberg propaganda operation

Journalism: Bloomberg News self identifies as a #Bloomberg propaganda operation

With Michael Bloomberg running for President, Bloomberg News says it will only do investigative reports on non-Democratic Party candidates, due to its conflict of interests. What? Bloomberg News is delivering an in-kind public relations/propaganda donation to Bloomberg and his party. The proper response would be to refrain from covering any aspects of the Presidential campaigns.

Journalism: Basically, every fact in the story was wrong

Journalism: Basically, every fact in the story was wrong

Other than most facts in the story were wrong, it was a fine news report. Not.

Both the AFP and Reuters have withdrawn/retracted the story claiming 100,000 children were in immigration detention due to Trump Administration policies because the data, which didn’t mean what they thought it meant, was from 2015, during a different president’s administration.

Climate communications: “The Trouble With Climate Emergency Journalism | Issues in Science and Technology”

Climate communications: “The Trouble With Climate Emergency Journalism | Issues in Science and Technology”

A paper in a journal published by the National Academy of Sciences faults journalists for focusing on dystopian, catastrophic, fear inducing dramatization of future climate projections – while failing to present the likelihood (or lack of likelihood) of such scenarios and the uncertainty presented in the science papers and conferences. It is gratifying to see others at a higher pay grade than I are also seeing that stories designed to create emotional outrage and responses are a turn off and counter productive to effective climate communications.

Climate communications: Time Magazine changes headline three times, uses false headline “How Asthma Inhalers are Choking the Planet”

Climate communications: Time Magazine changes headline three times, uses false headline “How Asthma Inhalers are Choking the Planet”

Time Magazine engaged in deliberate, and false, propaganda messaging to influence readers to take action. After contacting the magazine, they did, at least, revise the headline (for the 3rd time). They began with the accurate headline “How Asthma Inhalers are Contributing to Climate Change” but immediately changed it and promoted this rude and 100% false headline: “How Asthma Inhalers are Choking the Planet”.

First, making crude humor of asthmatics “choking” is not funny and is rude and insensitive. Second, it is physically impossible for inhalers to be “choking the planet”. In homes where someone uses an inhaler, annual inhaler usage produces about 1% of the total CO2-equivalent gases emitted by the home and life activities during the course of a year. If all inhalers were eliminated tomorrow, there would be no measurable impact on weather or climate over the next 100 years. A worst case inhaler, using data cited by Time and BMJ, produces about half the CO2-equivalent GHC as does a person breathing and exhaling CO2. Seriously. Just breathing is a bigger threat than using inhalers.

Time eventually changed the headline to the better, but still misleading “How One Commonly Used Asthma Inhaler is Damaging the Planet”. Their fiction story also referenced the wrong gas used as a propellant, cited an exaggerated greenhouse gas effect multiplier from an environmental activist group rather than the more modest IPCC AR5 science-based estimate, and then omitted many article changes from their Corrections List. The text itself continues to climate shame asthmatics with the false “Choking the Planet” claim.

This is an example of garbage journalism and how not to do do climate communications.

Journalism: “1 in 4 Americans defaulted on their student loans” is misleading

Journalism: “1 in 4 Americans defaulted on their student loans” is misleading

The claim that “1 in 4 Americans defaulted on their student loans” is a misleading headline from CBS News. The actual number is less than 1 in 20 Americans defaulted – and this was narrowly during the period of The Great Recession, the worst economic collapse since The Great Depression. They have worded the headline to use the method of “anchoring” – when we see this, we immediately think “1 in 4 Americans” have defaulted, which is not true. This appears to be propaganda in support of wiping out student debts.

Social media impact? Americans more stressed than those living in Venezuela

Social media impact? Americans more stressed than those living in Venezuela

Active propaganda messaging has persuaded Americans they are living in the darkest hours of history and life itself will be wiped out within 10 years. In reality, we live in the best of times in world history as measured across a wide range of critical metrics. Yet the constant barrage of negativity and hostility motivates individuals’ stress response.

Climate communications and Journalism’ish: Crisis, Emergency, Deniers and the language of propaganda in The Guardian

Climate communications and Journalism’ish: Crisis, Emergency, Deniers and the language of propaganda in The Guardian

The Guardian announces that it requires their staff to use pejorative propaganda terminology rather than the facts of atmospheric CO2 levels rising, sea level ice and temperature changes, ice mass changes and so on. Anyone who does not 100% adopt The Guardian’s perspective is to be labeled a “denier” (name calling, transference from “Holocaust denier”, get on the bandwagon). The word “climate” should be associated with “crisis”, “emergency” or “heating” (transference, fear). Shrill terminology designed to inflame and create emotional outrage is a turn off and causes readers to tune out from the issues.