Friday, May 31, 2013

Shenanigans

I tripped over this article in my Google feed today. This is one of the most misinformed and rhetoric lined pieces of nonsense I have ever read. I don't claim to be an expert on European politics or the Irish economy, but I thought I smelled something funny the minute I started reading the article. I sped my rate of reading, growing more and more flabbergasted, to quickly get to the comments. Thanks to the good citizens of Fermanagh, I learned that there isn't one piece of factual information in the article. I would go so far to call it yellow journalism. Here is a person who is so hell-bent on demonizing austerity that he will grab any small fact and expound on it and twist until it fits hits socialist agenda. One small example of his jingoism, he used a photo from Disney World as the leading illustration! Last I checked, there was no Disney in Northern Ireland. He even conflates the Celtic Tiger phenomenon with this town (or county, that seems to be something else he can't keep straight), which is in Northern Ireland, not the Republic of Ireland. At first, I wrote this off as the fact that this guy is just a jackass and decided to write an article without any fact checking. The more I started to think about it, the more I felt that he is culpable of much more. I can't help but suspect that he purposefully misconstrued the facts in order to rally the more left-leaning troops or confuse the fence sitters to lean a little more left. I can't prove that though. Let's assume that he did just make some honest geographical mistakes and he didn't realize that Ireland and Northern Ireland are two different countries with two different economies. Even though this is a completely embarrassing article if he is in fact a real journalist, I guess I can see someone making a mistake. But it is certainly not an honest mistake. This is the mistake of the believer, so wrapped up in his own world view that he believes that his story must be the true one, facts be damned! This is an extreme example of what happens in journalism when one tweaks the facts and spins the story to give a desired outcomes. It's articles like this that reminds those of us that are conscious of the attempts to skew our paradigm, that we must remain ever vigilant. You aren't always given a "gift" article like this that shows its true colors. The dangerous ones are those that look and smell authentic.