How to think critically about news quotes from unnamed "government sources" under trumpism

As the Trump administration continues its twin trademarks of "not having press conferences" and "being at the center of gnarly scandals involving spycraft and hacking," much of the reporting on what's actually happening in the most powerful country on Earth is based on quotes attributed to anonymous government sources -- people with something to say but who won't let their names be associated with it. Read the rest

The Internet Archive's Trump Archive will ensure that Trump's U-turns and lies can always be challenged

Cynics will argue that Trump's followers don't care if he's lying, but they assuredly care if he's lying about the stuff they're hoping he'll do (otherwise there'd be no trumpgrets); what's more, there's no hope of having a US politics based on rationality and reality if we stop paying attention to facts -- otherwise, we're surrendering to the "we create our own reality" army. Read the rest

Blue feed, red feed: side-by-side comparisons of social media feeds by politics

One of the most compelling data visualization projects from this year was Wall Street Journal's Blue Feed, Red Feed, which lets readers see exactly how divergent social media feeds have become, depending on someone's media diet. By coincidence, I capped an example that puts Boing Boing in their blue feed column. Read the rest

Trump and Brexit are like lotto tickets: the more unrealistic, the better

Fintan O’Toole is on fire in analysing the nature of Boris and Trump's pitches for (respectively) Brexit and a ban on Muslim migration to the USA: they're meant as fantasies, deliberately unrealistic, to be voted for as an act of political daydreaming in a truthy age where no one holds politicians accountable for bald-faced lies. Read the rest