Category Archives: Faux News

The Donald, “It’s Bill Clinton Who ‘Doesn’t know Much’”, reality check

What “The Donald” Tweeted and below Bill Clinton’s achievements and awards.  You judge the truth.


Donald Trump: It’s Bill Clinton Who ‘Doesn’t Know Much’


A war of words between Donald Trump and Bill Clinton escalated after the former president told a local newspaper that Trump “doesn’t know much” and blamed his wife’s loss in the race for the White House on FBI Director James Comey and Russian hackers.

The president-elect took to his Twitter feed to respond Tuesday morning.


Donald J. Trump


Bill Clinton stated that I called him after the election. Wrong, he called me (with a very nice congratulations). He “doesn’t know much” …

5:03 AM – 20 Dec 2016


Donald J. Trump


especially how to get people, even with an unlimited budget, out to vote in the vital swing states ( and more). They focused on wrong states

5:09 AM – 20 Dec 2016

Clinton made the initial remarks last week to a group of people he ran into at a small bookstore in Westchester County, NY, including an editor at the Bedford-Pound Ridge Record Review, who published Clinton’s comments.

Trump under pressure to acknowledge Russian hacking 7:23

“James Comey cost her the election,” Clinton reportedly said, referring to Comey sending a letter to lawmakers just two weeks before the election about the finding of new emails the FBI said could be pertinent to an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email server during her time as secretary of state. Clinton added, “We were seven (percentage) points up” in the polls and slated to win before Comey’s announcement.

Two days before the election, Comey told members of Congress that the FBI found nothing new in the e-mails but Clinton maintained the damage had already been done.

RELATED: Hillary Clinton Blames FBI Letter, Russia Hacking for Presidential Loss

In the reports of Clinton’s stop at the bookstore, Clinton was characterized has having had taken a call from Trump after the election and described it as “cordial.” On Tuesday afternoon, Clinton sought to clear up who initiated the phone call through his own Twitter feed:


Donald J. Trump


Bill Clinton stated that I called him after the election. Wrong, he called me (with a very nice congratulations). He “doesn’t know much” …


Bill Clinton


Here’s one thing @realDonaldTrump and I can agree on — I called him after the election. …

10:17 AM – 20 Dec 2016

Clinton was also asked at the book store if he thought Trump was a smart man. “He doesn’t know much. One thing he does know is how to get angry, white men to vote for him,” Clinton reportedly responded. He had previously said he believed Russia was also to blame for releasing internal Democratic emails and documents that hurt his wife’s election’s prospects before Election Day.

“I’ve watched her battle through that bogus email deal and be vindicated at the end,” Clinton said earlier this week. “She fought through everything, and she prevailed against it all. But, you know, with the end we had the Russians and the FBI deal, which she couldn’t prevail against that.”


Bill Clinton’s Achievements

Taken from:

  • He has been honoured with doctorate degree from various colleges and universities including Missouri, Arkansas, Kentucky, and New York. Countries across the globe have honoured him by naming institutions, roads and buildings in his name.

  • In 2001, he was the proud recipient of the Medal for Distinguished Public Service. Additionally, he was awarded with the prestigious Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for Children, a J. William Fulbright Prize for International Understanding, a TED Prize and GLAAD Media Award recipient.


  • Taken from Wikipedia:

    The list of honors and awards received by Bill Clinton who served as the 42nd President of the United States from 1993 to 2001. Before that, he was Governor of the state of Arkansas, and afterwards he has continued life in the public eye.[1] He received many awards and honors throughout his career.

    Other honors and awards

    Schools have been named for Clinton,[19][20][21] and statues do homage him.[22][23][24] The Clinton Presidential Center was opened in Little Rock, Arkansas in his honor on December 5, 2001.[25] He has been honored in various other ways, in countries that include the Czech Republic,[26] New Guinea,[27] Germany,[28] and Kosovo.[22] U.S. states where he has been honored include Missouri,[29] Arkansas,[30] Kentucky,[31] and New York.[32] He was presented with the Medal for Distinguished Public Service by Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen in 2001.[33]

    In 1993, Clinton was selected as Time magazine’s “Man of the Year“,[34] and again in 1998, along with Ken Starr.[35] From a poll conducted of the American people in December 1999, Clinton was among eighteen included in Gallup’s List of Widely Admired People of the 20th century.[36]

    In 2000, Princeton University‘s American Whig-Cliosophic Society awarded him the James Madison Award for Distinguished Public Service.[37]

    In 2004, he received a Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for Children for narrating the Russian National Orchestra‘s album Wolf Tracks and Peter and the Wolf (along with Mikhail Gorbachev and Sophia Loren) and 2005 Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for My Life. In 2005, he received the J. William Fulbright Prize for International Understanding,[38] and 2007 TED Prize (named for the confluence of technology, entertainment and design).[39]

    In 2005 he received the Freedom medal.

    In 2006, Clinton was made a Grand Companion of the Order of Logohu (GCL) by the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea. He was given the award for “outstanding leadership for the good of mankind … and his commitment to fighting HIV/AIDS.”[40]

    On June 2, 2007, Clinton, along with former president George H.W. Bush, received the International Freedom Conductor Award, for their help with the fund raising following the tsunami that devastated South Asia in 2004.[41] On June 13, 2007, Clinton was honored by the Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria alongside eight multinational-companies for his work to defeat HIV/AIDS.[42]

    On September 9, 2008, Bill Clinton was named as the next chairman of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His term began January 1, 2009, and he succeeded former President George H. W. Bush.[43]

    In December 2010, Bill Clinton was named PETA‘s 2010 person of the year for using his influence “to promote the benefits of following a vegan diet.”[44]

    On March 15, 2011, Bill Clinton was inducted into Irish America magazine‘s Irish America Hall of Fame for his crucial role in the Northern Ireland Peace Process.[45]

    In 2012, a fish species was named after him, the beaded darter, for his lasting environmental accomplishments in creating and expanding national monuments, preserving millions of acres of wilderness areas, his leadership and commitment during challenging economic times, and his continued commitment to global humanitarian issues and needs and peace[46]

    In April 2013, Bill Clinton was named the inaugural recipient of the honorary Advocate for Change GLAAD Media Award for his record of promoting tolerance of the LGBT community, including advocating for marriage equality in New York in 2011, advocating against Amendment 1 in North Carolina in 2012, and calling for the Supreme Court of the United States to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act in 2013.[47][48]

    In March 2015, Bill Clinton was listed among the 10 recipients of the maiden edition of Global Seal of Integrity (GSOI) Honors list. An annual list by two young Nigerians, Emmanuel Joshua Omeiza and Godspower Oshodin dedicated at promoting trust and honesty for the well-being of the universe.

    If you want to understand Trump’s Presidency you’ll have to come to grips with Steve Bannon, Propagandist in Chief.

    I Know Trump’s New Campaign Chairman, Steve Bannon. Here’s What You Need To Know.

    Photo by Danny Moloshok/Invision/AP, FileSteve Bannon



    AUGUST 17, 2016

    3275868864217 Comments948911

    UPDATED November 13, 2016

    On November 13, President-Elect Donald Trump named Bannon his White House Chief Strategist. He will serve alongside White House Chief of Staff and former RNC Chairman Reince Preibus as co-equals, reportedly.

    ORIGINAL: On Wednesday, the Trump campaign shifted top campaign staff: the new CEO of the campaign is, predictably and hilariously, Steven K. Bannon, the current chairman of Breitbart News. I have a bit of experience with Bannon, given that I was the editor-at-large of Breitbart News for four years, and worked closely with Breitbart and Bannon.

    Here’s what you need to know about Bannon, as well as new campaign manager Kellyanne Conway.

    1. Steve Bannon Turned Breitbart Into Trump Pravda For His Own Personal Gain. Back in March, I quit Breitbart News when it became clear to me that they had decided that loyalty to Donald Trump outweighed loyalty to their own employees, helping Trump smear one of their own reporters, Michelle Fields, by essentially calling her a liar for saying that she had been grabbed by then-Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski. Here’s what I wrote at the time:

    Andrew built his life and his career on one mission: fight the bullies. But Andrew’s life mission has been betrayed. Indeed, Breitbart News, under the chairmanship of Steve Bannon, has put a stake through the heart of Andrew’s legacy. In my opinion, Steve Bannon is a bully, and has sold out Andrew’s mission in order to back another bully, Donald Trump; he has shaped the company into Trump’s personal Pravda…the facts are undeniable: Breitbart News has become precisely the reverse of what Andrew would have wanted. Steve Bannon and those who follow his lead should be ashamed of themselves.

    Not to say “I told you so,” but I did tell you so.

    2. Bannon Uses Celebrity Conservatives To Elevate His Personal Profile. Bannon began receiving conservative media attention for his documentary Generation Zero. And he began elevating his profile by latching onto Michele Bachmann with his documentary Fire From The Heartland. But he truly insinuated himself into the circles of conservative power by making a 2011 documentary about Sarah Palin, The Undefeated. His connection with Palin upped his brand in the movement significantly. He soon began appearing on Fox News with Sean Hannity fairly regularly, became personal friends with Hannity, and met Andrew Breitbart. He insinuated himself into Breitbart’s business by lending him office space, then made a documentary starring Breitbart, Occupy Unmasked. When Breitbart died, his business partner Larry Solov offered Bannon chairmanship of the company. Bannon then turned Breitbart into his personal domain, making himself a regularly bylined columnist (certainly rare for a major media company) and installing himself as a radio host on Breitbart Radio on Sirius XM. Finally, he used his role as Breitbart CEO to turn the outlet into Trump Pravda, creating a stepping stone to close connection with Trump. Breitbart publicly burned bridges with everyone to maintain its Trump loyalty. That was Bannon, a scorched-earth personal opportunist.

    3. Bannon Took At Least One Major Breitbart Investor For A Serious Ride. One of the main investors in Breitbart News is Robert Mercer. The Mercer family put millions of dollars into a Ted Cruz super PAC during this election cycle, even as Bannon manipulated Breitbart News into a Cruz-bashing Trump propaganda outlet. The spokesperson for the Mercer family was Kellyanne Conway, who has now been installed as Trump’s campaign manager. I have been reliably informed by sources associated with the pro-Cruz super PAC that for months, as Bannon was using Breitbart News to promote Trump, the Mercers were defending Bannon’s neutrality to other Cruz supporters worried about Breitbart’s dishonest coverage about Cruz.

    4. Breitbart’s Staff Lusts After Trump Involvement. Long before the billionaire officially entered the presidential race, Bannon was close to him; in April 2014, the Trump offices described Bannon thusly: “MAJOR SUPPORTER OF MR. TRUMP.” The new team at Trump headquarters will undoubtedly include all the Breitbart staffers who openly lusted after power within the Trump campaign: Joel Pollak, the Breitbart lawyer who desperately wanted to be a Trump speechwriter, and wrote a disgusting hit piece about me personally when I left and accurately accused the website of becoming an adjunct to the campaign; Matthew Boyle, the pseudo-journalist who reportedly bragged about becoming Trump’s press secretary; Milo Yiannopoulos, the Trump-worshipping alt-right droog stooge. They’re all in with their Godking, now.

    5. Under Bannon’s Leadership, Breitbart Openly Embraced The White Supremacist Alt-Right.Andrew Breitbart despised racism. Truly despised it. He used to brag regularly about helping to integrate his fraternity at Tulane University. He insisted that racial stories be treated with special care to avoid even the whiff of racism. With Bannon embracing Trump, all that changed. Now Breitbart has become the alt-right go-to website, with Yiannopoulos pushing white ethno-nationalism as a legitimate response to political correctness, and the comment section turning into a cesspool for white supremacist mememakers.

    6. This Is Precisely The Sort of Corrupt Media Relationship Breitbart Used To Abhor. Andrew Breitbart used his memoir, Righteous Indignation, to target one thing above all else: what he called the Democrat-Media Complex. He hated the merger of the Democrats and the media, and particularly despised their lie of objectivity. Breitbart News never claimed to be objective. But until Trump won the nomination, leadership at Breitbart News maintained that they had not become a loudspeaker for Trumpism. That was obviously a lie, and one Breitbart would hate. HATE. Now, it’s clear that Breitbart News is indeed and Trumpbart News. That’s pathetic and disgusting.

    7. Trump’s Campaign Strategy Could Be The Launch Of A New Media Outlet. Because Bannon’s ambitions extend to Steve Bannon, he’ll tell Trump he’s doing a fantastic job even if he isn’t. That’s how Bannon Svengalis political figures and investors – by investing them in his personal genius, then hollowing them out from the inside. There’s a reason Sarah Palin went from legitimate political figure to parody artist to Trump endorser, with Steve Bannon standing alongside her every step of the way. There’s a reason Breitbart News went from hard-charging news outlet to drooling Trump mouthpiece. Bannon emerges from all of this unscathed. So what’s next on his agenda? If Trump wins, he’s in a position of high power; if Trump loses, Bannon could head up a new media empire with Trump’s support and the involvement of new Trump supporter and ousted former Fox News head Roger Ailes. Look for Sean Hannity to be a part of any such endeavor.

    8. Bannon Is A Legitimately Sinister Figure. Many former employees of Breitbart News are afraid of Steve Bannon. He is a vindictive, nasty figure, infamous for verbally abusing supposed friends and threatening enemies. Bannon is a smarter version of Trump: he’s an aggressive self-promoter who name-drops to heighten his profile and woo bigger names, and then uses those bigger names as stepping stools to his next destination. Trump may be his final destination. Or it may not. He will attempt to ruin anyone who impedes his unending ambition, and he will use anyone bigger than he is – for example, Donald Trump – to get where he wants to go. Bannon knows that in the game of thrones, you win or die. And he certainly doesn’t intend to die. He’ll kill everyone else before he goes.

    Bannon’s ascension is the predictable consummation of a romance he ardently pursued. I joked with friends months ago that by the end of the campaign, Steve Bannon would be running Trump’s campaign from a bunker. That’s now reality. Every nightmare for actual conservatives has come true in this campaign. Why not this one, too?

    Donald Trump supporters get their news from a strange media universe – and it’s frequently fact-free

    Donald Trump supporters get their news from a strange media universe – and it’s frequently fact-free

    Concern over the presence of fake news websites has grown during the election


    Click to follow
    The Independent Online

    francis-fake.pngOne of the many fake stories to be shared by millions claimed Pope Francis was backing Mr Trump WTOE5 News

    On a street in Grundy, Virginia, a declining mining community that would vote 78 per cent in favour of Donald Trump, a man had an update on a trending news story.

    A report about two police officers being shot in Des Moines, Iowa, was false, said the man. It had been invented, apparently to try and benefit one or other political competing in the area. He had read about it being false on the internet. (Later, it was announced the police had found and charged a suspect with the shootings.)

    One of the defining features of the 2016 US presidential election was the parallel words from which opposing supporters obtained their information. The continuing fragmentation of the media and the growth of non-mainstream sources has meant that voters have never had so many options when it came to seeking out information. 


    There is increasing concern about the proliferation of fake news websites (Buzzfeed)

    Yet, another distinctive feature was the number of stories that turned out to the utterly false. This was particularly true – though not exclusively so – for supporters of Mr Trump, who were frequently drawn to news site such Breitbart, InfoWars and Freedom Daily.

    “Because of social media you have access to a larger variety of information in the past, Kathleen Stansberry an assistant professor of public relations and social media at Cleveland State University, told The Independent.

    Yet she said while there were many of articles published online that were well-researched and accurate, there were usually fewer “gate-keepers” than in traditional media with its fact-checking, accuracy and fairness.

    InsideGov | Graphiq

    “We need to take more responsibility as media consumers and media publishers,” she said.

    Facebook has found itself in the crosshairs of criticism after it was accused that the social media giant had unfairly helped Mr Trump by the spread and dissemination of articles about Ms Clinton that were false. These included stories about an alleged secret son belonging to Bill Clinton that had been covered up for decades, claims that she was seriously ill and that Pope Francis had endorsed Mr Trump.

    Mark Zuckerberg has reportedly demised the criticism, saying that it did not impact the election, because the fake news his social media site spread to hundreds of millions of people were not biased in favour of just one candidate.

    View image on Twitter

    View image on Twitter


    Alex Jones


    This photo of Hillary captures her soul like nothing I’ve ever seen. This is the demon. #SpiritCooking #Trump #AltRight

    6:42 AM – 6 Nov 2016

    “The hoaxes that do exist are not limited to one partisan view, or even to politics,” he wrote in a public post. “Overall, this makes it extremely unlikely hoaxes changed the outcome of this election in one direction or the other.” 

    Earlier this year, an investigation by BuzzFeed found that that of the Facebook posts it examined from three major right-wing websites, 38 per cent were either false or a mixture of truth and falsehood. It said readers were often likely to share such false stories and were therefore profitable for Facebook to post. 

    Mr Zuckerberg said more than 99 per cent of news shared on Facebook was verifiable, but acknowledged more could be done to flag fake stories which had been debunked.

    13 Nov

    DrunkReactionaryBond @DrunkRxnryBond

    @RichardBSpencer Establishment go-along-to-get-along types are fine. The NeverTrumpers are dangerous, but have frozen themselves out already


    Richard Spencer


    The question is: Which way is the arrow pointing? It’s pointing towards the #AltRight!@DrunkRxnryBond

    10:23 PM – 13 Nov 2016

    “We don’t want any hoaxes on Facebook. Our goal is to show people the content they will find most meaningful, and people want accurate news,” he wrote.

    “We have already launched work enabling our community to flag hoaxes and fake news, and there is more we can do here. We have made progress, and we will continue to work on this to improve further.”

    Steve Bannon, the former head of Breitbart who took a leave of absence to lead Mr Trump’s campaign, is now set to take up a position within the new administration as political counsellor. His appointment has delighted many on the alt-right and white extremists. 


    Richard Spencer, who heads the National Policy Institute, a white supremacist “think tank” based in Arlington, Virginia, welcomed Mr Bannon’s move into the White House.

    He said on Twitter: “Bannon is not a chief of staff, which requires a “golden retriever” personality. He’ll be freed up to chart Trump’s macro-trajectory.”

    Charlie Sykes on Where the Right Went Wrong

    By CHARLES J. SYKESDEC. 15, 2016

    Continue reading the main storyShare This Page


    CreditNiv Bavarsky

    MILWAUKEE — After nearly 25 years, I’m stepping down from my daily conservative talk radio show at the end of this month. I’m not leaving because of the rise of Donald J. Trump (my reasons are personal), but I have to admit that the campaign has made my decision easier. The conservative media is broken and the conservative movement deeply compromised.

    In April, after Mr. Trump decisively lost the Wisconsin Republican primary, I had hoped that we here in the Midwest would turn out to be a firewall of rationality. Our political culture was distinctly inhospitable to Mr. Trump’s divisive, pugilistic style; the conservatives who had been successful here had tended to be serious, reform-oriented and able to express their ideas in more than 140 characters. But in November, Wisconsin lined up with the rest of the Rust Belt to give the presidency to Mr. Trump.

    How on earth did that happen?

    Before this year, I thought I had a relatively solid grasp on what conservatism stood for and where it was going. Over the previous decade, I helped advance the careers of conservatives like House Speaker Paul D. Ryan; Gov. Scott Walker; Reince Priebus, the chairman of the Republican National Committee; and Senator Ron Johnson. In 2010, conservatives won big majorities in the Wisconsin State Legislature, and I openly supported many of their reforms, including changes to collective bargaining and expansions of school choice.

    In short, I was under the impression that conservatives actually believed things about free trade, balanced budgets, character and respect for constitutional rights. Then along came this campaign.

    On the surface, the explanations for Mr. Trump’s improbable win in Wisconsin are simple enough: He won big margins in rural, blue-collar counties and won the pivotal Green Bay area by double digits. But he underperformed Mitt Romney in the vote-rich Milwaukee suburbs and ended up getting fewer votes in victory than Mr. Romney received in his 2012 defeat. Hillary Clinton, however, got about 39,000 fewer votes in heavily Democratic Milwaukee County than President Obama did four years earlier. Democrats simply stayed home, though that is obviously not the whole story.

    That is what I saw, and this is what it might mean for the future of conservatism. When I wrote in August 2015 that Mr. Trump was a cartoon version of every left-wing media stereotype of the reactionary, nativist, misogynist right, I thought that I was well within the mainstream of conservative thought — only to find conservative Trump critics denounced for apostasy by a right that decided that it was comfortable with embracing Trumpism. But in Wisconsin, conservative voters seemed to reject what Mr. Trump was selling, at least until after the convention.

    To be sure, some of my callers embraced Mr. Trump’s suggestion for a ban on Muslims entering the country and voiced support for a proposal to deport all Muslims — even citizens. One caller compared American Muslims to rabid dogs. But right to the end, relatively few of my listeners bought into the crude nativism Mr. Trump was selling at his rallies.

    What they did buy into was the argument that this was a “binary choice.” No matter how bad Mr. Trump was, my listeners argued, he could not possibly be as bad as Mrs. Clinton. You simply cannot overstate this as a factor in the final outcome. As our politics have become more polarized, the essential loyalties shift from ideas, to parties, to tribes, to individuals. Nothing else ultimately matters.

    In this binary tribal world, where everything is at stake, everything is in play, there is no room for quibbles about character, or truth, or principles. If everything — the Supreme Court, the fate of Western civilization, the survival of the planet — depends on tribal victory, then neither individuals nor ideas can be determinative. I watched this play out in real time, as conservatives who fully understood the threat that Mr. Trump posed succumbed to the argument about the Supreme Court. As even Mr. Ryan discovered, neutrality was not acceptable; if you were not for Mr. Trump, then you were for Mrs. Clinton.

    The state of our politics also explains why none of the revelations, outrages or gaffes seemed to dent Mr. Trump’s popularity.

    In this political universe, voters accept that they must tolerate bizarre behavior, dishonesty, crudity and cruelty, because the other side is always worse; the stakes are such that no qualms can get in the way of the greater cause.

    For many listeners, nothing was worse than Hillary Clinton. Two decades of vilification had taken their toll: Listeners whom I knew to be decent, thoughtful individuals began forwarding stories with conspiracy theories about President Obama and Mrs. Clinton — that he was a secret Muslim, that she ran a child sex ring out of a pizza parlor. When I tried to point out that such stories were demonstrably false, they generally refused to accept evidence that came from outside their bubble. The echo chamber had morphed into a full-blown alternate reality silo of conspiracy theories, fake news and propaganda.

    And this is where it became painful. Even among Republicans who had no illusions about Mr. Trump’s character or judgment, the demands of that tribal loyalty took precedence. To resist was an act of betrayal.

    When it became clear that I was going to remain #NeverTrump, conservatives I had known and worked with for more than two decades organized boycotts of my show. One prominent G.O.P. activist sent out an email blast calling me a “Judas goat,” and calling for postelection retribution. As the summer turned to fall, I knew that I was losing listeners and said so publicly.

    And then, there was social media. Unless you have experienced it, it’s difficult to describe the virulence of the Twitter storms that were unleashed on Trump skeptics. In my timelines, I found myself called a “cuckservative,” a favorite gibe of white nationalists; and someone Photoshopped my face into a gas chamber. Under the withering fire of the trolls, one conservative commentator and Republican political leader after another fell in line.

    How had we gotten here?

    One staple of every radio talk show was, of course, the bias of the mainstream media. This was, indeed, a target-rich environment. But as we learned this year, we had succeeded in persuading our audiences to ignore and discount any information from the mainstream media. Over time, we’d succeeded in delegitimizing the media altogether — all the normal guideposts were down, the referees discredited.

    That left a void that we conservatives failed to fill. For years, we ignored the birthers, the racists, the truthers and other conspiracy theorists who indulged fantasies of Mr. Obama’s secret Muslim plot to subvert Christendom, or who peddled baseless tales of Mrs. Clinton’s murder victims. Rather than confront the purveyors of such disinformation, we changed the channel because, after all, they were our allies, whose quirks could be allowed or at least ignored.

    We destroyed our own immunity to fake news, while empowering the worst and most reckless voices on the right.

    This was not mere naïveté. It was also a moral failure, one that now lies at the heart of the conservative movement even in its moment of apparent electoral triumph. Now that the election is over, don’t expect any profiles in courage from the Republican Party pushing back against those trends; the gravitational pull of our binary politics is too strong.

    I’m only glad I’m not going to be a part of it anymore.

    Charles J. Sykes (@SykesCharlie), a talk-show host in Wisconsin, is working on a book titled “How the Right Lost Its Mind.”

    Follow The New York Times Opinion section on Facebook and Twitter (@NYTOpinion), and sign up for the Opinion Today newsletter.

    Continue reading the main story

    Why Did 53 Percent of White Women Voters Go for Donald Trump?

    Why Did 53 Percent of White Women Voters Go for Donald Trump?






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    Margaret Power is a Professor of History at Illinois Tech and the author of Right-Wing Women in Chile: Feminine Power and the Struggle against Allende, 1964-1973.

    I was swimming in the public pool near my house on Veterans Day, November 11, 2016, a few days after the presidential election. The pool is divided into lanes and swimmers are expected to swim in their lanes. The pool was very crowded because of the holiday. A white man came in, surveyed the pool, and jumped into my lane. Soon, he was bearing down on me. I felt intimidated because he was a very aggressive swimmer and much larger than me. Afterwards I talked about what happened in the shower with the other women who had seen it all. Instead of ignoring his intrusion or of asking the guards to deal with it, I decided to speak to the man myself.

    One woman who I just met said she would accompany me to talk with him. We went out, he was no longer in the pool. Then he came out of the dressing room. I went up to him and spoke with him. He apologized and the incident ended.

    What, you may be asking, does this have to do with the majority of white women voters voting for Trump? In and of itself, the incident is fairly pedestrian, not all that much really happened, and it ended well. The other women swimmers supported me; the guards were ready to back me up. I explained to the man what he had done and suggested he should have asked me if we could share the limited space, and he apologized. But because the incident took place after the Trump “victory,” and in the middle of a most unsettling and depressing week, I thought about my feelings and what, if any, bearing they had on why so many white women voted for a misogynist and racist.

    What I realized is that I felt fear as the man in the pool bore down on me. I was scared he might run into me and I might get hurt. I felt afraid that if I said something to him while I was in the water he might do something to me. And all this, mind you, took place when I was surrounded by friends, where I have been swimming for over twenty years. And the four life guards, who I have known for years, were close by. In fact, it is the very safeness of the situation that made me realize how pervasive and insidious is the fear that pervades much of our lives, consciously or unconsciously.


    Root Of Evil by Cody Pogue (Letter to Editor Printed In Kingwood Observer)

    Of course this fear is gendered (and raced and classed). When I grew up I was taught by my mother, in school and by society in general, that as I female I was weaker than men and therefore I should simultaneously acquiesce to them so as not to make them angry and rely on them for protection. In many ways, the women’s movement has transformed how I, and so many women, understand and deal with our fear. It has helped us to look to ourselves and to other women as our safety system and our team. I talked about what happened in the pool with the other women there and I felt quite capable of speaking to the man myself. Yet, and unfortunately that yet persists, I did feel scared and I did not want to confront the man alone, in the pool, wearing only my swimsuit.

    Right-Wing Women in Chile

    For years, I studied and wrote about right-wing women in Chile, the women who opposed the government of the democratically elected socialist president Salvador Allende and supported the military dictatorship of General Augusto Pinochet. I wanted to understand why the majority of women in Chile, not just wealthy women, looked to military rule as the solution to their problems. Their problems primarily concerned the shortages in foodstuffs and basic necessities, such as toothpaste or toilet paper, which occurred during the Popular Unity government of Salvador Allende (1970-1973). The U.S. government, working in conjunction with the Chilean Right, landowners, and factory owners consciously worked to create these shortages in order to generate popular dissatisfaction with the Allende government. The lack of goods hit and hurt working class women most directly, since they lacked other resources to feed, clothe, and maintain their families.

    However, it was not just the shortages that caused women to oppose the Popular Unity government. In addition, a large number of women responded negatively to the rapid social transformations that took place during the Popular Unity years (1970-1973). Many middle and most upper-class women detested the heightened status working-class people acquired with the new government and the increased challenges young people posed to parental strictures on their lives. They, along with many working-class women, also disliked the street fighting and somewhat chaotic nature of politics at the time. Although for many Chileans the Popular Unity government represented an improved standard of living, integration into national and local politics, a sense of empowerment, and a fuller expression of democracy, for other Chileans, and most especially for many Chilean women, it represented turmoil and insecurity. For these reasons, a majority of women (but only a minority of men), implored the military to overthrow the democratically elected government and take power. And that is exactly what the Chilean military did on September 11, 1973. For the next seventeen years, General Pinochet ruled Chile with repression and terror. Oblivious or indifferent to the suffering the Pinochet regime inflicted on many Chileans, a large number of Chilean women embraced it. For them, the regime represented security and the restoration of the Chile they knew and loved. In their eyes, Pinochet was making Chile great again.


    Republicans, Democrats, and Bernie Sanders: Expanding America’s Political Dialogue

    White Women and Fear

    Although Chile in the early 1970s was very different from the United States in 2016, there are nonetheless important parallels. For many white people in this country, the idea, let alone the reality, of a Black man as president was simply unacceptable. Although Obama never posed the challenge to the capitalist system that Salvador Allende, a Marxist, did, for many white people Obama’s presidency threatened the white supremacist conception of power and privilege that has ruled the United States from day one. The Obama presidency, combined with the growing number of non-white people in this country, challenged many white people’s, perhaps especially older ones, sense of the correct social order. Many members of this demographic see diversity and a multicultural nation not as a strength but as a direct threat to the position they believe they are entitled to hold because they are white, and, they believe, members of the superior race.

    However, there is also a gendered element to white people’s support for Trump. The majority of white women who voted (and of course some non-white women) in the United States voted for Donald Trump. How can we explain why these women would vote for a man who boasted of fondling women? A man who a number of women has accused of sexually abusing them? Trump has vowed to eliminate abortion and women’s right to control their body, which is not surprising since he has always exerted his right to control women’s bodies. Yet, the majority of white women voters voted for him. (Of course, some women voted for him specifically because he promised to appoint a Supreme Court judge who opposed abortion.)


    There Are Ways To Remove The Demand For Abortions by Cody Pogue – Kingwood Observer

    For these women, as was true for the conservative women in Chile who sought the overthrow of Salvador Allende, the politics of fear conditioned and defined their political choice. In the face of a threat to their perceived position of racial superiority; of terrorism carried out, in their minds, exclusively by Muslims; and of the “hordes” of non-white people pouring over the U.S. borders, the 53 percent of white women who voted for Trump, looked to this self-defined strong man as a source of security. He, they believed, would protect them from these multiple threats, and they, in turn, would offer him their vote and their loyalty. This is the Faustian bargain the majority of white women who cast their ballots for Trump were willing to make to secure the empty promise of making America great again.

    Consciously or unconsciously, the rejection of Hillary Clinton was based, in part, on these women’s belief that no matter what she said or did, she just wasn’t tough enough. They wanted a man like “no one is going to push me around” Trump to do the job.

    Although I don’t know for sure, I assume that these women, or at least the majority of them, do not consider themselves feminists in any progressive sense, since everything Trump stands for is antithetical to fundamental feminist beliefs and values. Although some of these women, perhaps those who belong to Catholic or Evangelical congregations may look to each other for support, it is undeniable they rely on Donald Trump, one of the more odious examples of brutal patriarchy, to protect and defend them.

    Given this sad reality, we, as feminists, need to redouble our bonds of sisterhood and our vision of a non-racist, non-heterosexist, anti-colonial, non-United –States-is-the-greatest-country-in-the-world movement. We must continue to struggle against class oppression, for disabled rights, and for the environment and global health. We can and do look to each other and others who are struggling alongside of us to make this vision a reality.

    I wrote this because to stimulate discussion and understanding about why 53 percent of white women who voted cast their ballots for Trump. I hope it will generate ideas about where we go from here. I look forward to your thoughts.

    Humm, maybe it’s time for us all to cash in on this… what fake news will you write today?

    Fake News: How a Partying Macedonian Teen Earns Thousands Publishing Lies



    Fake News: How This Teenager in Macedonia Is Striking It Rich3:53

    VELES, Macedonia — Dimitri points to a picture on his Instagram showing a bar table decked with expensive champagne and sparklers.

    It’s from his 18th birthday just four months ago — a lavish party in his east European hometown that he says wouldn’t have been possible without President-elect Donald Trump.

    Dimitri — who asked NBC News not to use his real name — is one of dozens of teenagers in the Macedonian town of Veles who got rich during the U.S. presidential election producing fake news for millions on social media.

    The articles, sensationalist and often baseless, were posted to Facebook, drawing in armies of readers and earning fake-news writers money from penny-per-click advertising.

    Dimitri says he’s earned at least $60,000 in the past six months — far outstripping his parents’ income and transforming his prospects in a town where the average annual wage is $4,800. He is one of the more successful fake news pushers in the area.

    His main source of cash? Supporters of America’s president-elect.

    “Nothing can beat Trump’s supporters when it comes to social media engagement,” he says. “So that’s why we stick with Trump.”

    Image: Dimitri looks out over the Macedonian town of Veles

    Dimitri looks out over the Macedonian town of Veles Alexander Smith / NBC News

    Even with the presidential contest over and Google and Facebook’s plans to crack down on fake news makers, money continues to pour in.

    Posts about Hillary Clinton are also a hit — but only negative ones.

    “I have mostly written about her emails, what is contained in her emails, the Benghazi tragedy, maybe her illness that she had,” Dimitri adds, but now he’s moved on to headlines like: “Trey Gowdy Revealed His EPIC Plan To Imprison Hillary Now That Election’s Over, SHE IS DONE!”

    Dimitri’s sole aim is to make his stories go viral.

    His most popular headlines during the election included: “JUST IN: Obama Illegally Transferred DOJ Money To Clinton Campaign!” and “BREAKING: Obama Confirms Refusal To Leave White House, He Will Stay In Power!”


    The Fight Against Fake News 7:34

    The teenager is unrepentant about any influence his stories may have had on swaying public opinion.

    “I didn’t force anyone to give me money,” he says. “People sell cigarettes, they sell alcohol. That’s not illegal, why is my business illegal? If you sell cigarettes, cigarettes kill people. I didn’t kill anyone.”

    The same weekend that NBC spent with Dimitri, a gunman opened fire in a Washington, D.C., pizzeria. The shooter told police he was motivated by a fake news story. The pizzeria, Comet Ping Pong, was accused online of hosting a pedophile ring run by Democratic leaders.

    Asked about the incident this week, Dimitri claimed he wasn’t familiar with the story nor the people who had spread it online.

    A Modern Gold Rush

    Image: Students arrive in their High school 'Kosta Racin' in the town of Veles

    Students arrive at their high school in Veles in November. GEORGI LICOVSKI / EPA

    The small, rust-belt town of Veles has found itself in the international spotlight after investigations by BuzzFeed and the Guardian traced more than 100 fake news domain names here.

    The fake news bonanza couldn’t have come against a more jarring backdrop.

    Once part of communist Yugoslavia, the Republic of Macedonia has a population of 2.1 million in a landlocked area about the size Vermont. Blanketed by rugged mountains, parts of the country have enjoyed a tourism surge in recent years.

    But vacationers won’t find Veles in many travel guides. The town of 50,000 is almost an hour’s drive down a lonely, crumbling highway from the capital, Skopje.

    Image: A map of Eastern Europe

    Macedonia is landlocked by Bulgaria, Serbia, Kosovo, Albania and Greece. Google Maps

    Visitors are greeted by a distressed mosaic of red-roofed buildings, densely stacked onto a steep mountainside. Industrial smokestacks add to a wintry fog settling over the valley — though even their output has diminished after several recent factory closures.

    Almost a quarter of Macedonians are currently unemployed — a rate around five times higher than in the U.S.

    But the burdens that weigh on Veles might also explain why it’s become a global hotbed for fake news.

    High unemployment and a close-knit community meant that when Dimitri and others started making money, word quickly spread and everyone wanted a piece of the action.

    Most teens here speak fluent English, allowing them to quickly navigate through reams of Western news sites and pinpoint potentially viral content.

    Dimitri estimates there are now 300 locals dabbling in fake news, with at least 50 making “decent money,” and around a dozen making “a lot.” He says he’s not quite at the top of the pecking order, but not far off.


    How to Outsmart Fake News 1:11

    But he is no scrappy teenager. Dimitri is bright, with an obvious aptitude for business.

    He won’t show NBC News his profile on Google AdSense, an online advertising service that allows websites to make money, to protect five other teenagers who asked him not to reveal aspects of their shared interests. He’s also wary of revealing his full income, worried it will make him a target for thieves, or worse.

    However, he does show NBC News a digital receipt from Google showing he earned more than $8,000 from the web giant in September. He says this was just one of several advertising accounts, and claims his most successful streak — in the run-up to the election — saw him rake in $27,000 in just one month.

    When asked for comment about the persistence of fake news even after the election, Facebook directed NBC News to a post from CEO Mark Zuckerberg last month in which he laid out the company’s plan to tackle the phenomenon.

    In an interview with TODAY on Thursday, Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg acknowledged “there’s a lot more to do.”

    Google outlined steps last month that it said would restrict advertising on websites that “misrepresent, misstate, or conceal information.” The company did not respond to NBC News’ requests for comment on this apparently still-flourishing industry.

    Dimitri says even after the election, while business is less brisk, his fake news is still highly profitable. Like any business, he’s aware of the need to adapt.

    “This business updates every hour, every ten minutes, every minute,” he says. “There are always news ideas, new types of generating new visitors and that’s the thing we all want.”

    So while newspapers across the globe are losing advertising revenue, Dimitri’s empire of lies is thriving.

    He says he now employs three 15-year-olds, paying them the equivalent of $10 per day. As well as buying new laptops and paying cash to boost his posts on social media, he has also invested some of his earnings into real estate — a joint venture with his parents, who are more than happy with his success.

    The Anatomy of a Lie

    As with many regular journalists, Dimitri starts his day by trawling the web looking for trending topics that he can harness to drive traffic to his websites.

    He copies his posts from other fake news websites, including many in the U.S., or takes content from mainstream media organizations before peppering them with invented details. He also posts provocative online polls such as: “Should Trump Deport All Refugees?” and: “Do you consider Donald Trump, the Jesus of America?”

    Most of this content is published on websites Dimitri has built to look like NBC News, Fox News, the Huffington Post and others.

    Koch Network Launches New PR Firm


    Koch Network Launches New PR Firm



    The network of organizations running under the direction of billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch is adding a new entity to its already sprawling political and policy network of organizations. In Pursuit Of is the name of the new public relations firm that will work to expand the message of a free markets and small government.

    The new firm is for-profit, and will represent other parts of the Koch network, including Concerned Veterans of America, LIBRE Initiative and Americans for Prosperity. It could also take on a variety of clients that meet their ideological values, including political candidates, companies, non-profits or trade organizations.

    The model will be similar to the Koch-run i360, a political data operation that works closely with network organizations but is hired by outside political clients.

    Their political focus will be on corporate tax reform, reducing regulations and replacing the Affordable Care Act.


    Trump takes ‘thank you’ tour to North Carolina 5:43

    The network spent about $250 million on politics and policy to help elect Republicans to office in 2016, though none of it went to Trump.

    Despite pressure from donors throughout the campaign, the brothers never supported Trump and instead focused on electing down ballot Republicans. They point to winning seven of the eight Senate seats they contested, the Missouri gubernatorial race and a number of House races. They also say they saved taxpayers $200 billion in federal and state policy wins as well.

    The group could be odds at times Trump even after he enters the White House. Trump has indicated that he’s supportive of large government spending to boost specific programs or the economy.

    James Davis, a current vice president of Freedom Partners, the Koch network’s political arm, will run the new agency as president.

    “These changes that we’re making help position us for success to make an impact and more broadly across these various issues,” Davis said in an interview Wednesday.

    They are already researching the political landscape for 2017, which includes two gubernatorial races, and the Senate map in 2018. They could get involved in as many as ten Senate races.

    Earlier this year the three grassroots groups, AFP, LIBRE and CVA, began working more closely in a strategic realigning of the vast network. Davis said this is a continuation of that effort to better align to the political and policy needs of the future.

    Leigh Ann Caldwell

                  LEIGH ANN CALDWELL

    Faux News Part 2.


    Conspiracy Theorist Arrested for Death Threats Against Sandy Hook Parent


    A Florida woman who said the Sandy Hook massacre of 26 people was a hoax has been indicted for making death threats to one of the shooting victim’s parents, the Department of Justice announced Wednesday.

    Lucy Richards, 57, was indicted on four counts of transmitting threats in interstate commerce, the Department of Justice announced Wednesday. Each count carries a maximum of five years in prison.

    Richards, of Tampa, Florida, was arrested Monday, the DOJ said.

    Lucy Richard Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office

    Richards is accused of making a series of death threats to a parent of one of the children killed in the mass shooting on or around Jan. 10 of this year, according to the DOJ statement.

    Richards’ arrest came just one week before the fourth anniversary of the Dec. 14, 2012 shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, where 20 children and six adults were killed.

    Authorities allege Richards sent the individual messages saying “you gonna die, death is coming to you real soon” and “LOOK BEHIND YOU IT IS DEATH,” according to the indictment.

    The DOJ did not release the name of the parent, but said the individual lives in South Florida.


    Columbine, Newtown, Orlando: The names seared on Americans’ minds 2:41

    Richards’ belief that the school shooting never occurred was the motivation behind the death threats, the DOJ said.

    In the years since the shooting, various online conspiracy website have falsely claimed the shooting was a massive hoax concocted to erode Second Amendment gun rights.

    Richards is scheduled for initial court appearance on Dec. 19.

    Conspiracy theorist and Trump supporter Alex Jones has repeatedly and falsely claimed the shooting never happened on his website Infowars.

    Image: One week anniversary of shooting at elementary school in Newtown, Connecticiut

    A woman kneels in front of a fence with the names of the 20 children killed at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, in Dec. 2012. JUSTIN LANE / EPA file

    Last month, the daughter of a victim of the shooting called on Trump to disavow the radio host. Jones has said that the president elect called him to thank him for his support.

    Richards’ case is similar to an incident over the weekend, where an armed North Carolina man traveled to a Washington D.C. pizzeria while trying to investigate an unfounded conspiracy theory that the restaurant was involved in a child sex trafficking tied to the Clintons, according to court documents