Yesterday, 60 Minutes aired a segment on “fake news,” which featured correspondent Scott Pelley interviewing several guests as per their typical style. Regarding the guests, it was shocking to see Mike Cernovich of Danger & Play invited to be a part of the segment… and that he accepted. He clearly knew 60 Minutes would not paint him in a fair light with their editing, but it was shocking to see 60 Minutes air a portion of the interview near the end of the segment where he said as much:
Michael Cernovich: I’m a skeptical person. And I know that there’s a lotta people gunnin’ for me. So I’m not gonna be reckless.
Scott Pelley: Who’s gunning for you?
Michael Cernovich: You are! I’m on 60 Minutes! Right?
Scott Pelley: What do you mean we’re gunning for you?
Michael Cernovich: Do I really think that you guys are gonna tell the story that I would like to have told? No. Your story’s gonna be, “Here’s a guy, spreads fake news, uses social media and these social media people better,” I know the story you guys are doing before you do it.
It was hardly the only one-sided story told in the segment. The segment began with the story of a nutcase who tried to barge into Comet Pizza, owned by James Alefantis, in response to the “Pizzagate” story that was trending at the time. Predictably, CBS painted the story as “fake news”:
Over three years ago, The Daily Mail reported a story about a 16-year-old boy who died at a border crossing. Allegedly, the boy was trying to pass off liquid methamphetamine as “apple juice” and Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) Officers asked him to prove it was indeed apple juice:
Customs and Border Protection officers at the port of San Ysidro reported that the boy appeared nervous and their suspicions grew when they found he was carrying two small containers of an amber-colored liquid that he claimed was juice.
The officers took the teen to an inspection area, where he drank some of the liquid, said San Diego police Lt. Mike Hastings.
Free Market Shooter was recently presented with an article from Vogue detailing the steps Google’s Yasmin Green is taking to become a “slayer” of internet trolls. A few notable excerpts are below:
“We have that geopolitical lens,” Green tells me. “We have the mandate to think ahead, rather than respond to what’s happening at the moment. To think prophetically.”
“Our job is to get more and better information in the hands of vulnerable people,” she says.
“How can we illustrate this?” asks Green. How, in other words, can the threat be explained so that you don’t have to be a Silicon Valley programmer to understand it?
Does this sound at all to you like a simple reprogramming of search algorithms? Because it sure reads a lot more like McCarthy-ist censorship. And a closer look at Google’s strategy reveals that is exactly what Google intends to do, with right-wing news as the target.
Yesterday, Jeff Bezos’s blog, The Washington Post, posted an article with the headline “Immigrants Are Going Hungry So Trump Won’t Deport Them”. An excerpt is below:
In the two months since President Trump’s inauguration, food banks and hunger advocates around the country have noted a decline in the number of eligible immigrants applying for SNAP — and an uptick in immigrants seeking to withdraw from the program.
Their fear, advocates say, is that participation could draw the eye of Immigration and Customs Enforcement or hurt their chances of attaining citizenship. Without federal nutrition benefits, many are resorting to food pantries and soup kitchens to feed themselves and their children.
The evidence is still anecdotal — and The Washington Post was unable to speak directly with immigrants who chose to cancel their SNAP benefits.
But all it took was one astute Twitter user to show the world that the headline they posted wasn’t the original one.
On Friday, the Department of Justice asked for the resignations of 46 US attorneys. As a DoJ spokesperson pointed out, this is standard operating procedure when a new administration takes office:
“As was the case in prior transitions, many of the United States attorneys nominated by the previous administration already have left the Department of Justice. The attorney general has now asked the remaining 46 presidentially appointed US attorneys to tender their resignations in order to ensure a uniform transition,” Justice Department spokesperson Sarah Isgur Flores said.
Of the 46 US attorneys, only one refused to tender his resignation as per the request of Attorney General Jeff Sessions – US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharara, a high-profile Obama appointee in the prominent New York City district that prosecuted so many big cases. So since he refused to resign, Sessions did what Trump had previously done so many times on his show The Apprentice… he fired him:
The nomination of Betsy DeVos was fraught with criticism from the left. She was derided for having “no experience with public education, no political experience, no government administrative experience,” and her support for school vouchers/charter schools, among many other things. Notably, most of the criticism came from educators, many of them members of the teachers’ unions, who have had many years and more than enough funding to fix failing public schools, with little (if any) success.
Which all begs the question – if your student is enrolled at a failing public institution, why should he/she be forced to remain enrolled there?
Recently, someone shared the experience of “Madeline” (the mother of a Philadelphia school student) and “Steve” (the student himself). Their names have been changed for the purpose of this article, which as Madeline explains, is more than likely necessary, so they do not face reprisal from public school educators and administrators. For her and her son, having a choice has meant the difference between years wasted in a failing school, and a real chance at a real education.
On March 2nd, Snapchat (SNAP) had its initial public offering (IPO) of shares. Raising $3.4 billion by selling shares for $17, the shares quickly traded higher, closing at $24.48. Trading $26.56 at the time this article was written, the shares reached an intraday high of $29.44 the morning of March 3rd.
As Zerohedge and MarketWatch covered, nearly all institutions have put a price target far below the current price level, finding the stock to be far overvalued:
In the past day since Snap’s SNAP, +12.07% market debut, there have been at least six coverage initiations from brokerages on Wall Street. Morningstar initiated coverage with a $15 fair value on the stock, Pivotal Research initiated with a selling rating and $10 target, Instinet initiated with a reduce rating and a $16 rating, Atlantic Equities initiated with a hold rating and $14 target, Aegis Capital initiated with a $22 target and SIG Susquehanna initiated with a neutral rating and $22 target.
On Monday, February 13th, Kim Jong-nam, half brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, was assassinated in the shopping concourse at Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Malaysia. Allegedly, two women accosted him briefly and attacked him with VX nerve agent or a close derivative, which is classified as a weapon of mass destruction by the United Nations.
One of the suspects was apprehended shortly after the incident, and claimed that she thought the whole thing was a “prank” organized by a TV station, and that she thought she was spraying “baby oil” on Nam:
Aisyah thought the substance she rubbed on Kim’s face was “a kind of oil, baby oil, something like that,” said Andreano Erwin, Indonesia’s deputy ambassador to Malaysia. But Malaysian police said Friday that tests on Kim’s eyes and face revealed the presence of the VX nerve agent.
And if she really expected the authorities, or anyone else for that matter, to believe that VX could be confused with baby oil, she was clearly mistaken.
The city of Philadelphia recently implemented a “soda tax” at the start of the calendar year. As Philly.com recently reported, it hasn’t gone exactly as planned:
Two months into the city’s sweetened-beverage tax, supermarkets and distributors are reporting a 30 percent to 50 percent drop in beverage sales and are planning for layoffs.
One of the city’s largest distributors says it will cut 20 percent of its workforce in March, and an owner of six ShopRite stores in Philadelphia says he expects to shed 300 workers this spring.
“People are seeing sales decline larger than anything they’ve seen up to this point in the city,” said Alex Baloga, vice president of external relations at the Pennsylvania Food Merchants Association.
The failure of this tax is about as surprising as seeing the sun rise in the morning. The Burning Platform in particular has covered the tax on many occasions: here, here, here, and here, and they’ve been excellent at demonstrating the lunacy of the tax itself:
A Zerohedge article posted this morning contained a clip from MSNBC, where co-anchor Mika Brzezinski said to control exactly what people think is the media’s job. I’m paraphrasing a bit, so below is the exact quote:
SCARBOROUGH: “Exactly. That is exactly what I hear. What Yamiche said is what I hear from all the Trump supporters that I talk to who were Trump voters and are still Trump supporters. They go, ‘Yeah you guys are going crazy. He’s doing — what are you so surprised about? He is doing exactly what he said he is going to do.'”
BRZEZINSKI: “Well, I think that the dangerous, you know, edges here are that he is trying to undermine the media and trying to make up his own facts. And it could be that while unemployment and the economy worsens, he could have undermined the messaging so much that he can actually control exactly what people think. And that, that is our job.”
I thought it might have been hyperbole… then I watched the clip for myself: