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Good stuff Rusty, walkthroughs like this are helpful for moving up the learning curve on the quid maps. Although, I must say I still wouldn’t trust myself to come to a conclusion on my own. But your point about how journalism has turned a corner is important. This article from the NYT in 2016 crystalized for me that we had moved into a new world for news.
It used to be: News -> Reaction (personal) -> Spin -> Reaction (public). But now that the news bureaus have been so hollowed out that they lack the foundational knowledge to process data on their own (like me with Quid). As a result journalists had to depend on biased sources particularly when it comes to politics or finance. In some cases, the journalists don’t even know they are being played. The new world is: Pre-spun news -> Public reaction -> Personal reaction (heavily influenced by peers). We are all still adapting and I have found you & Ben to be wonderful guides and sources of moral support. Keep up the great work!
I think this piece by Rolling Stone’s Matt Taibbi (he of Goldman “Vampire Squid” fame) on how Russiagate has destroyed the credibility of the press is was pretty damning – https://taibbi.substack.com/p/russiagate-is-wmd-times-a-million . It chronicles how out of either ideology or desire for ratings/clicks (more likely both) news organizations abdicated their core value of fact checking.
key quotes :
We broke every written and unwritten rule in pursuit of this story, starting with the prohibition on reporting things we can’t confirm.
Years ago, in the midst of the WMD affair, (NY) Times public editor Daniel Okrent noted the paper’s standard had moved from “Don’t get it first, get it right” to “Get it first and get it right.” From there, Okrent wrote, “the next devolution was an obvious one.” We’re at that next devolution: first and wrong. The Russiagate era has so degraded journalism that even once “reputable” outlets are now only about as right as politicians, which is to say barely ever, and then only by accident.
I guess the reason is why there are so few news articles Rusty, as that these organizations don’t actually do news anymore. Maybe its too expensive and can’t be supported by current business models, maybe (a la Fox News/MSNBC) the only way to generate sustainable revenue is to be more entertainment/preaching to the choir/“analysis”.
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