The long, winding road not taken: We disagree with Kevin Drum's view on the best way to deal with fake news.
Our society has been awash in such news for decades now. It has frequently come from the right. It has also come from the mainstream. Example:
"Al Gore has a problem with the truth" was a two-year campaign of fake news live and direct from the upper-end mainstream press.
That fake news didn't come mainly from the right. Mainly, it came from the Mainstream Press Elite Noise Machine—a noise machine careerist liberals know they must never criticize or even discuss.
At ay rate, we've been swimming in fake news for decades now. At present, gigantic amounts of fake news come from Donald J. Trump and the right-wing pseudo-press.
Here's how Kevin says to deal with this. This advice strikes us as faulty:
DRUM (2/6/18): At the moment, all I can suggest is the Hannity test: If Sean Hannity is going crazy over something, the rest of us should ignore it. He’s an almost perfect barometer of what’s news and what’s nonsense.We disagree. Liberals have to learn how to talk to the people who get conned by people like Hannity. If Hannity's saying it, Trump is too. Should we just ignore him as well?
We have to learn how to talk to Those People. We have to tell them two things:
1) You're getting conned by people like Hannity.It won't be easy to do this. As all Those People Over There know, we liberals have spent our time, for many years, telling them things like this:
2) You have a citizen's duty to stop accepting this.
1) You're a gang of racists and homophobes.The definitive example of this approach was the two weeks of dick jokes Rachel Maddow dumped on Tea Party heads in the spring of 2009, courtesy of guest star Ana Marie Cox—with Maddow (falsely) saying, night after night, that she was embarrassed by the off-color things Cox was surprisingly saying.
2) You are very, very dumb, unlike us very bright liberals.
A tribe which keeps people like that around is a tribe which isn't real honest. Meanwhile, conservatives understand what terrible people we are.
For the most part, they don't understand how terrible Sean Hannity is. We aren't able to tell them because of who and what we are.
We tend to be stupid, unpleasant, dumb. People in the other tribe know this. Only we remain barefoot and clueless with respect to this basic fact.
Speaking very slowly now: No, you won't be able to convince all The Others that Hannity, and Donald J. Trump, are conning them. (Your lizard will quickly tell you this, urging you not to try.)
Persuading all of them isn't the goal. Persuading enough of them is.