Thursday, December 08, 2016

Fake News Provably Propagated By The “No” Parties Making Questionable The Referendum Outcome

Posted by Peter Quennell

PM Renzi is reported as being in a fighting-back mood.

A main reason is that alarmist fake news has hit Italy on the Internet big-time and he claims it may have tilted the final count and perhaps even caused the “Yes” faction to lose.

The main purveyor of alarmist fake news on the Internet might have been the Five Star Movement which runs a number of sites. See the NY Times report here.

Fake news on the Internet plagued the US election, and it may even have tilted the result. Russia is conclusively pointed to as a main propagator, if not the only one.

Trump’s National Security Advisor and his son were tweeting a conspiracy theory that has just led to an unrepentant crackpot storming into a Washington restaurant and firing off a gun.

Almost every day a new violent incident is being reported as caused by fake news. Today another Internet-infected crackpot was indicted and she may face 20 years inside.

Did fake news actually begin with mainstream media? See the video at the top which argues that it did. Meredith’s case has been plagued by a massive volume of fake news in the main media over the past nine years. Netflix continues that trend.

In Perugia the fake news has led to a number of threats of violence and angry verbal rants, some by the Netflix team themselves.

In our next post, we’ll list some of the hundreds of writers of articles and books about Meredith’s case and TV talking heads who have propagated fake news.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 12/08/16 at 10:39 AM in Justice systemsItalian systemThe wider contextsItalian context


Fake news, a dreadful new trend. It makes slanted news stories seem tame in comparison with outright lies. Believe only half of what you read, stay cautious and consider the source. That will be my new mantra.

How do we believe anything on the Internet? it is hard to ferret out facts.

Posted by Hopeful on 12/08/16 at 06:22 PM | #

The fake news couldn’t influence the voting. People just didn’t want less democracy, they did not want Renzi anymore and his pro EU politics. They want jobs and less problems with the banks and debts. Also Renzi is not charming.

The same regarding Trump, there were too many lower people who voted for him. Lower middelstand just got enough votes also from the elite there, above all they know everything better but dont do anything for the working poor. I didn’t like him or Clinton, however I will change my mind if he will help those people. Nobody expected that Trump would win, so now there “must be” this fake news.

Not so in Italy, everybody expected a No although nothing will change. Peppe Grillo cant become a PM cause he is a felon. And his party didn’t present any programme, it is still a pure protest party out of frustration as most people are. Partita democracy disappointed, so there was Berlusconi. Bruxelles must change or Italy will make also exit.

Also the next PM will be from PD, So also no change regarding Meredith, and Trump won’t change his mind either. Maybe the US press with time?

Posted by Elisa on 12/08/16 at 10:18 PM | #

Hi Hopeful

Yes read up about any one of the conspiracy theories and we can see how each one grows like a cancer. Unfortunately the main media is not blameless. Too many outlets, endless fight for not so many eyeballs, too few routes to benign empowerment.

But the Internet and its “hives” and “stovepipes” and toxic empowerment and the ability of individuals to make real money out of fake news (as we see plenty of in our case) seems to me the bigger problem. 

The arrest of the woman in Florida throws light on the Sandy Hook conspiracy theory (that 20 plus children were not shot to death, it was staged by actors to give impetus to rolling back guns). She and others had taken to really vicious harassing of the parents, the language she used is on YouTube - wow!!!. At least now she is arrested which maybe chills others.

The arrest of the guy who shot up the pizza restaurant in Washington maybe slows the theory about that place. There really is child molesting on a grand scale (Jimmy Savile who the BBC protected) and then there are also these made up theories, like the supposed tunnels under a California school, which confuse and disempower everybody.

My own interest and goal remains the same: get people face to face on development processes, they are interesting, fun, empowering, and profitable, and they seriously ground people back in reality. The US is uniquely in need of these, it has fewer than any other country, they are the only true “blue collar answer” - and they work immaterial of what the Federal government is up to.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 12/09/16 at 08:15 AM | #

Hi Elisa

Agreed on all points. Anybody but Renzi could be progress.

I hope Five Stars etc might go all-out for local empowerment and development. It could surprise everybody how quickly the jobs and investment turn up.

Its not that Brussels or Rome actively block this, it is just that they do nothing to spread the knowhow, and dont exactly help with top down cookie-cutter programs.

So festering everywhere are these knowhow and resources and empowerment vacuums at the local levels. Quite rightly people are ticked off.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 12/09/16 at 08:33 AM | #

Various ways of fighting back are being propagated.

To fight the Sandy Hook fake news and the ever-escalating harassment of parents as “actors”, this video below by a Sandy Hook support group was put online 10 days ago, and has seen over 6 million views.

Its long been suggested we do the same, and some video interviews are in the works.

<iframe width=“640” height=“360” src=“” frameborder=“0” allowfullscreen></iframe>

Theres more about the video in an editorial in today’s NY Times.

Opinion Pages | Editorial Notebook
A Viral Twist to the Newtown Tragedy
DEC. 9, 2016

NEWTOWN, Conn. — It’s been four years since the gun carnage at Sandy Hook Elementary School took the lives of 20 first graders in a matter of minutes. The grief of the parents remains unfathomable. But their determined efforts to prevail beyond the mayhem have turned out to be creative and far-reaching.

A new public service announcement produced by Sandy Hook Promise, a nonprofit mental health and gun safety group run by some of the parents, instantly went viral this month. It was viewed by millions of people in its first few days as those who watched, particularly teenagers, eagerly passed it on.

The video depicts a day at a high school with its upbeat hopes and socializing. It cleverly follows the story of the main character, Evan, until a student bursts in with a gun. Then a brief flashback shows viewers what they had most likely missed: The lonely, quietly angry would-be shooter was in the background the whole time — a hint at the actual, gravely disturbed teenager who used an assault rifle against the Newtown children. The video is intended to help communities recognize the signs of distress and isolation that might lead people to hurt themselves or others.

It is especially rewarding to see the video deliver some comfort and encouragement for the Newtown parents during what, now and forever, is their sadly commemorative holiday season in which to recall how the children perished 11 days before Christmas.

“We’re trying to prevent other families from suffering this pain,” Mark Barden, a founder of Sandy Hook Promise, said, explaining how the video represents therapy for the parents in their determination to marshal power from their children’s shortened lives. “It helps me reflect on the life little Daniel would have had,” he said, speaking of his 7-year-old who was killed in the massacre. And “the message turns out to be universal, reaching people at a fundamental human level,” Mr. Barden said of the video, which was produced with the pro bono help of the ad agency BBDO New York.

The timing could not be better in this newly dawning era of fake news and “truthers” who use the internet to create vicious denials of reality. Since the first days of the Newtown shooting, dark fabulists have grotesquely insisted it was all staged as an anti-gun-rights charade, even harassing a Newtown parent with demands to see proof of his child’s death.

“Not on my radar,” said Mr. Barden, who will not give the deniers the attention they crave. “A dad at a meeting told me his son has this idea it was all a hoax and ‘you and your son are actors.’ I told him that would be the answer to my prayers. I said I hope his son gets some help.”

The truth has been painfully undeniable in the state courts where parents are attempting to sue the assault rifle manufacturer for recklessly selling adapted war weapons to civilians. “Fifty-pound bodies were riddled with five, 11, even 13 bullets,” the court filing declared in documenting the massacre. “This is not sensationalism. It is the reality the defendants created when they chose to sell a weapon of war.”

Focusing on the future, Sandy Hook Promise offers tools for educational programs that make children, professionals and parents more aware of people who are troubled and the kind of early help they need. Children are urged to seek out wallflowers and invite them into the group; Mr. Barden says that was one of Daniel’s special talents. Similar passion drives other Newtown parents who helped to found the group — Nicole Hockley, Tim Makris and James Belden.

The parents were heartbroken by congressional members who sympathized with them and then shamelessly ducked the issue of gun safety. But they have built a staff of 17 here, plus other full-timers working in major school districts like Miami-Dade and, next year, Los Angeles. Last week, more districts were calling to use the tools of Sandy Hook Promise, and its public service video continued to seize the social media spotlight from the scurrilous truthers.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 12/10/16 at 06:45 AM | #

I just googled “inclusionary Americans” and guess what, not even one hit!  But I think most Americans in their quite nice natural state (I hope there’s a zoo somewhere for them)(New York?!) are pro-inclusion, and pro-truth.

Fake news for the most part is cynically generated for big bucks. The fake news “industry” is way more profitable than true news. Many who propagate it are millionaires and some are billionaires too.

Why should this ever change? Well you cannot be economically really successful if you are looking at the world all wrong. Wrong facts >>> long slow dive.

I know fine people who voted for Trump to shake things loose. Actually, this could work.

If you cruise the “red states” here and Michigan etc, the lack of dynamism and the decaying towns might break your heart. I’ve driven around “coal country” at least twice. Erk.

Tho most there would move elsewhere in a heartbeat, they cannot, because any health benefits they have wont follow them around. Geographical mobility in this economy really sucks.

Most ANTI Trump commentary today is not yet facing that among other truths. Ridicule is on steroids now. 

But there are some constructive post-election articles agreeing things HAVE gone wrong. Some say the far more successful states on the coasts OWE it to middle America to spread dynamism and set up more institutions there. 

Its not the full answer; but it would help. That would push everybody to get their facts right.

This much-talked-about new poll below of Trump voters indicates how far down the wrong road frustrated folks have been led, for years before Trump even came along.

Trump merely had to shake the tree. The true & fact-based realities the poll description omits are in the graphics down below the quote.

[Excerpts - key points] PPP’s newest national poll find that although Donald Trump is a little bit more popular than he was during the campaign, a majority of Americans still have a negative opinion of him. 43% of voters view Trump favorably to 51% who have an unfavorable view of him….

Obama ends his final year in office with a 50/45 approval spread. When it comes to the question of who voters trust more to pick the new Supreme Court justice, Obama beats out Trump 52-45.

Voters don’t think that Trump’s Electoral College victory while losing the popular vote is really fair- 50% think the candidate who receives the most votes nationally in the election should become President, to only 37% who disagree with that concept…. [But] 60% of Trump voters think that Hillary Clinton received millions of illegal votes to only 18% who disagree with that concept and 22% who aren’t sure either way….

40% of Trump voters insist that he won the national popular vote to only 49% who grant that Clinton won it and 11% who aren’t sure…

73% of Trump voters think that George Soros is paying protesters against Trump to only 6% who think that’s not true, and 21% who aren’t sure one way or the other.

14% of Trump supporters think Hillary Clinton is connected to a child sex ring run out of a Washington DC pizzeria. Another 32% aren’t sure one way or another… Only 54% of Trump voters expressly say they don’t think #Pizzagate is real.

67% of Trump voters say that unemployment increased during the Obama administration, to only 20% who say it decreased….  Only 41% of Trump voters say that the stock market went up during the Obama administration. 39% say it went down, and another 19% say they’re not sure.

Trump’s been in a variety of fights with the media recently, and he’s losing all of them…  By a 49/40 spread, voters say the New York Times has more credibility than Trump…. By a 48/41 spread, voters say CNN has more credibility than Trump….  While Trump’s favorability rating is negative at 43/51, Saturday Night Live’s is positive at 48/33.

Trump’s certainly been effective at turning his voters against the various entities he’s feuding with though. Among Trump voters the Times has a 7/71 favorability spread, CNN has an 11/76 favorability spread, and SNL has a 17/61 favorability spread. The musical Hamilton has an 11/45 favorability with Trump voters, compared to 61/3 with Clinton voters….

Congress is about as unpopular as ever, with only 10% of voters approving of it to 75% who disapprove. Paul Ryan has a 37/49 approval rating as Speaker and that makes him look positively popular next to Mitch McConnell who has a 16/56 approval rating nationally and is the least popular politician nationally in the country.

Finally in these divided times we find there are some issues that Clinton and Trump supporter do agree on… There’s 89/8 support nationally for expanded background checks on gun purchases, including support from 96% of Clinton voters and 81% of Trump voters….

There’s 76% support nationally for increasing the minimum wage to at least $10 an hour, including support from 95% of Clinton voters and 54% of Trump voters.







Posted by Peter Quennell on 12/11/16 at 11:37 AM | #

Renzi will likely be back. He hasn’t been so bad either. Made some good reforms. He means well.

Italians have had many ‘unelected’ governments, so backlash here was a little surprising. Renzi made a mistake to tie himself to the reforms. Dumb.

But he’ll be back. Italian politicians always circulate. That’s guaranteed.

Posted by azoza on 12/11/16 at 09:17 PM | #

Don’t see what Peter Quennell’s point was.  The discussion of the above concerning Trump’s election is irrelevant in terms of the popular vote. The electoral college is one of the vestiges of sovereign state power that remains after the original constitution was destroyed at Appomattox April 1865. 

I suppose that the purpose of the article was to show that the people really wanted Hillary as president.  Bunk of course.  Hillary is a totalitarian statist in the best sense of Joe Stalin, in addition to being an un-convicted felon.  Under Clinton the first and second amendments would have been seriously compromised even more so than now.

It’s a mistake to believe the polls that show US Citizens want more gun control infringement. The trend is in the opposite direction.  Many states have authorized not only concealed carry but open carry as well.

The charts juxtaposed to the opinion polls are misleading. An honest calculation of unemployment leaves it at around 15 percent.  The stock market was pumped by easy money from the Fed not growth in production.  U.S. GDP fell to about 1.5 on average or there about under O. 

The comment about the more successful coastal is well…not so.  NY state is losing population to the South and Southwest, California is losing population to the red states. California is replacing its white population with lower IQ Hispanics which doesn’t bode well for future productivity in that state. 

BTW, much of the opposition to Hillary came from whites who are justifiably concerned that the country will lose its European and English nature.  Hillary’s promise of citizenship for virtually every Latin who managed to cross into the US was a scary proposition.  Nor do White Americans want to turn their country over to Muslims the way England and presumably the way Italy is on the road to doing. 

Not sure were this leaves our search for justice for Meredith.  Don’t know if the Italian Supreme Court can reverse an annulment in a criminal case and send it back to lower courts for reconsideration.  My understanding is they cannot.  If they can, then the enormity of Amanda dissing of Trump is large indeed.

Posted by PanamintCharlie on 12/13/16 at 11:35 AM | #


“Hillary is a totalitarian statist in the best sense of Joe Stalin, in addition to being an un-convicted felon.”

Huh?! If you think this is a pro Clinton site please do read a lot more. We have NO politics here. We have made quite clear that it was under her watch and in the next 4 years that unsavory pro-Knox pressure was applied to Italy.

Tho not everyone here loves Trump, the latest posts make it clear that in the narrow terms of this case he could actually prove to be a plus.

The Supreme Court decision can be annulled if it was arrived at through illegal means or broke Italian law. We have various posts proving that it was and did.

Preventing that going anywhere was Renzi #1. The next post above this one suggests we might soon be seeing Renzi #2.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 12/13/16 at 12:10 PM | #

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