“The CGS Monitor … has taken fake news to new depths with its use of fake opinions,” Mefford wrote in a posting this week on the Atlantic Council’s website. “How do we really know who said what? Academics, scholars, politicians, and writers must now vigilantly manage their brand as a core part of their work. Your opinion, it turns out, may no longer actually be yours.”
How do you do you “do” satire when the entire American scene seems like one giant episode of a satire movie?
Parker noted that the show’s most recent season, which coincided with the bitter final throes of the election season, tried at first to mock current events—before admitting that their efforts “couldn’t keep up” with the unfolding reality.
“You know, it was like what was actually happening was way funnier than anything we could come up with,” Parker continued. “You know what I mean? So. . .we decided to just kind of back off and let them do their comedy and we‘ll do ours.”
Along those lines…
I know we’ll all “remain sane” somehow—we have to, so that we can be smart and energized and fight back. But with three years and fifty-odd weeks to go, there are definitely moments when I find myself in total sympathy with this comment someone recently added to his post of my cartoon on Twitter: “My desire to be well-informed makes me wish I could fall asleep and wake up on a different planet.”
Posting for its relevance to the climate debate generated by the Trump presidency…
For over 40 years, a man named billy barr (he prefers his name to be spelled all lowercase) has lived alone in a small cabin in Gothic, Colorado. It’s one of the coldest and most isolated places in the United States. Bored and without anything to preoccupy himself, he began recording snow levels in 1973. “The main thing I interacted with was the weather and the animals, so I just started recording things just cause it was something to do,” he says in this short film, The Snow Guardian, by Day’s Edge Productions. “I had nothing to prove, no goals, no anything.” Climate researchers at the Rocky Mountain Biological Lab discovered that barr’s detailed records showed compelling evidence of climate change, and the data has been vital in understanding the severe impending effects of global warming. For more information, visit www.endofsnow.com and read “The Hermit Who Inadvertently Shaped Climate-Change Science.”
There are horrific lies of omission: last week, the White House released a statement on International Holocaust Remembrance Day that pointedly declined to refer to Jews, because others were killed, too. And there are denials of truth that are impossible to categorize: the President met with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., an anti-vaccine zealot with a history of falsehoods, and talked to him about possibly forming a commission on vaccine safety. (After Kennedy said he’d actually been asked to lead such a commission, provoking dismay, the Trump team said that no decision had yet been made.) Then there are lies so ludicrous that it is hard (though essential) to take them seriously: according to Trump, the United States has just gone through the most devastating instance of voter fraud in the nation’s history. And, in his telling, every one of the millions of illegal votes happened to be cast for his opponent.