Leftist activists lobbying to get Facebook to crack down on right-wing “disinformation” are touting a new study by an international progressive activist group called Avaaz. Columbia Journalism Review noted that leftist Judd Legum is boosting the study, which found “politically relevant disinformation was found to have reached over 158 million estimated views, enough to reach every reported registered voter in the US at least once.”
The study claimed “most negative misinformation (62 percent) was about Democrats or liberals.” The report looked at “the top 100 fake news stories about U.S. politics still online on the platform.” Since they are liberals, fake news was defined as “examples that had already been fact-checked and debunked by reputable U.S. fact-checking organizations at the time of our study.”
One could stop right there, since “reputable” fact-checkers have a demonstrable liberal tilt, and a much touchier trigger about attacks on Nancy Pelosi or “The Squad” or their other heroes.
But what makes this report turn amusing is how they end up complaining about satirical articles with suspiciously silly URLs. Legum said the second most distributed “fake” story claimed Pelosi was diverting $2.4 billion from Social Security to pay for impeachment. CJR wrote “Avaaz noted that the piece was labeled as satire, but that this wasn’t immediately apparent to anyone reading the story."
The website is called PotatriotsUnite.com. It says right at the top of the page “For Satire, Ridicule, and Mockery,” and features two potatoes with red MAGA-style caps that say “Derrr...” and “I pooped a little.”
Its motto is “Satire That Makes You Horny.”
Their fake Pelosi quote sounds made up:
“Well most of Trump’s voters and supporters are retired seniors. I think it’s fitting that we ask them to help pay to fix the mistake they made. They’ll just have to do without cable for a year or two. Okay? Now excuse me, I have to meet up with my liquor boy.”
So the Left is telling us that the greatest threat of disinformation...is coming from the Left. At least that's what their "About Us" page proclaims:
“Taters” are the conservative fans of America’s Last Line of Defense. They are fragile, frightened, mostly older caucasian Americans. They believe nearly anything. While we go out of our way to educate them that not everything they agree with is true, they are still old, typically ignorant, and again — very afraid of everything.
Our mission is to do our best to show them the light, through shame if necessary, and to have a good time doing it, because…old and afraid or not, these people are responsible for the patriarchy we’re railing so hard against. They don’t understand logic and they couldn’t care less about reason. Facts are irrelevant. BUT…they do understand shame.
Apparently, Trump fans would also think this affiliated satire is a true story:
Legum complained the third most-shared “fake news” story was “Ocasio-Cortez Proposes Nationwide Motorcycle Ban,” from another related satire site called TatersGonnaTate.com. The “fact checkers” at Snopes repeatedly go after this satire site, including this post. Here again, the "quote" from AOC isn't very plausible:
“Besides like, what I just said? A lot of these like, motorcycle people, okay, they’re like : ‘Ooh, look at me, I’m all old and fat and tough and I voted for Trump and smell like wet dog.’ And I’m supposed to slow my Prius down so you can like, noise pollute past everyone? I mean some of us have a nail appointment, people.”
I could write a more plausible fake quote than this, but they're going for the Funny. Then they added a fake Bikers for Trump spokesman, complete with joke about Zima, the Crystal Pepsi of beers, a very 90s joke: "President Trump is the best damn thing to happen to this country since Zima.”
Under a picture of Zima is this caption: "Getting drunk on Zima is kinda like making love to a pillow – I mean, yeah, it works, but you ain’t gonna want to tell anyone about it."
If CJR and Legum and Avaaz want to suggest there are millions of voters that can't tell this is pulling your leg, then they believe these millions are too stupid to vote. Leftists do think like that, especially when they lose elections.