Monday, January 15, 2018

Republican Senator's Speech Will Counter Trump's Fake News Awards

Donald Trump and his surrogates have led a war against the free press.  News reports that displease Trump are called "fake news"; facts that counter Trump's lies are dismissed in favor of "alternative facts". Trump understands that people have a tendency to believe what they want to believe.  His base prefers propaganda sources like Fox News and Breitbart News because they shape the news to fit comfortably into their belief system. They applaud Trump when he calls news reports in our most prestigious newspapers, magazines and on TV news shows "fake news".  Trump, is slipping into his role as TV entertainer this Wednesday to present "fake news" awards to real journalism outlets that report the facts as they see them.  His base will love the show.

Jeff Flake, a Republican senator from Arizona plans to give a speech this Wednesday which Trump's base will not like.  He compares Trump's attack on real journalism with comments made by despots like Stalin who also regarded the free press as "the enemy of the people"  Flake, or course, understands that the free press is fundamental to any democratic form of governance.  His speech places Trump's award show in its proper role.  It is part of his attack on our democracy.  The quote below from Flake's speech is worth repeating for everyone who prefers democracy to autocracy:

Despotism is the enemy of the people. The free press is the despot's enemy.

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