I just had a very important realization. In today’s world paying attention to the news is a full time job. I’m spending most of my off hours reading articles, watching video clips, listening to YouTube and Periscope-streams and so on. In an environment saturated with fake news it is essential to spend the proper amount of time to compare different sources and weighing their credibility against the content. It is very dangerous to take any one single source at face value. You risk getting a skewed perspective on important political matters. Myself, I’ve been listening intently to podcasts and other alternative media dilligently for over a decade now. The accumulation of this vast amount of listening hours has given me the ability to judge the credibility of numerous sources for news and insight.
It would be too simplistic to simply lump websites either in the category “credible” or “not credible”. That would be what Mike Cernovich calls “binary thinking”. Some sources I trust to a great extent, some I trust with a pinch of salt or selectively on some issues and others I simply read to understand what the other side is saying. At the same time it is useful to be aware of the political viewpoints of different people and their websites. If I’m checking out the Huffington Post then I’m conscious of the fact that they are very leftwing and that they are incapable of praising anything about Trump. Some examples are in order:
MSNBC = Very left
ABC = Left
CBS = Centrist
FOX = Right (still, the most objective of the MSM news channels. They are capable of airing criticizm of Trump)
All of the above are statist to different degrees. Also their classification is based on my own observations, they might not reflect the opinion of other people.
I have spent a lot of time following the news coverage of the 2016 US Presidential Election in particular. I enjoy watching different videos from the different networks and comparing their coverage. The results? Astounding, simply astounding. The way they portray the same story is markedly different. From the choice of pundits and experts to give their views to choice of pictures and video to accompany a segment. The differences are real. Last year’s election season was a useful tool for unmasking political agendas. The mainstream news outlets cloak themselves in the shroud of credibility called being objective and truthful. The fact is that they revealed their true political leanings by wearing it on their sleeves. Many of them relentlessly attacked Trump and swept anything that might possibly be detrimental to Clinton deep under the rug.
In the hyperpartisan environment of today following a wide variety of sources is more important than ever. I recommend that you the reader make up your own mind after consuming different sources of news. The balance between new media and legacy media is also important to get right. I watch enough MSM to get the gist of their take on something, but I get the actual “meat on the bone” from alternative sources that I trust after judging their credibility over a significant period of time. Some sources I trust with the caveat that they have such-and-such a bias and that they might be good on X issue, but terrible or somewhat questionable on Y issue.
The main lesson I want to convey is that either you follow the news properly by checking many different sources and investing a significant amount of time or don’t bother at all. Just committing little time to news consumption is harmful to both society and yourself. Society is harmed by uninformed voters and activists and you are harmed by deluding yourself about the world. You must change your lifestyle and habits in order to fit in the time necessary to become informed. I personally spent many hours listening to audio ripped from periscopes, YouTube videos and podcasts while out hiking in the woods today. Cleaning the bathroom? Slap on some headphones and pick a video or audio file and hit play. Walking the dog? An excellent opportunity for consuming news. Where there is a will, there is a way. The world deserves nothing less than your best efforts towards understanding it.