I don't make many posts. However when something comes up that summarizes something I have been seeing but haven't been able to put into words I feel a need to express myself. It's a shame that the visitors to this site already know that Fox News is not a fact news station because this is something others need to be made aware of. Even if they would do their best not to understand (It takes a lot of effort to avoid facts). Take note I avoided using the word truth because the fact is people create their own truths. It's easier to validate any point by calling it true. People think it gives the point some sort of significance when it it really doesn't.
I was motivated by a little piece I saw on an early morning show from Fox News. Everything about the they timing and the messengers was of great significance. The story led with the title "Don't take your kids to 4th of July parades they my become Republican. Really?" It was portrayed as a Harvard study that advised parents not to take their children to 4th of July parades in order to protect them from being right wing adults. The irony is the news story was an attempt to manipulate the findings of the study in the hopes of encouraging parents to take their children to parades to hopefully increase future republican numbers. Rather cynical. The larger irony was that the study was in part conducted by a Professor that studies propaganda and the news story about it was a propaganda piece.
The actual study titled "Shaping the Nation: Estimating the Impact of Fourth of July Using a Natural Experiment" Did not conclude that parents should not take their children to 4th of July parades. It does find that if a child has attended a 4th of July Parade he or she will be 2% more likely to identify with the Republican Party, 4% more likely to vote Republican, 3% more likely to make contributions and 0.9% more likely to vote. It does nothing in discouraging anyone to attend a parade. The only conclusion that was made is:
“We were surprised to find that childhood experiences of Fourth July celebrations could have such persistent effects. The evidence suggests that important childhood events can have a permanent impact on political beliefs and behavior and that Fourth of July celebrations in the US affect the nation's political landscape,”Yanagizawa-Drott
So? Fox creates a story where there's none. This is nothing new. It is important to take a look at what they were trying to do with the story. Most obvious is it runs on 4th of July morning for maximum impact; the study came out in May 2011. Could they have made more of an impact if they ran a few days earlier? Sure, but the message is not based on facts so it would be difficult to keep it in the cycle, god forbid someone interviews the person who conducted the study and discover it has nothing to do with discouraging attendance of 4th of July parades. 4th of July morning is also a guarantee that no one will bother to try and read into the study. Why would they run a story weak on facts apart from the fact that they are Fox? The story has been tried and tested in the blogs for the past few weeks so it will work.
What concerned me most was the impact the video on Youtube had. There was the usual Youtube user debate; the most hateful kind. But, it seemed no one had even bothered to read the study. It was all right vs left and "i hate both parties but I'm really on the right" against everyone else. The point was they were all dancing to Fox's tune because no one had read the story and everyone who could type on a keyboard was not the target of the propaganda. The reaction was just added bonus in diving people a little further.
This story was just given a little test drive by 3 low level Fox operatives. Will go it further? That depends on any further reaction to it. This is why it was first aired with a couple of insignificant people on air. It's too embarrassing for anyone with any dignity to run with it even in a place where dignity is lacking. It might be a build up to something else but it's clear that when they make their news they treat it like any other TV show it has to be tested first and there should be no time for any facts to catch up.
This is sad. To see such deliberate infliction of divisions in a society is horrible I hope it ends soon everything must come to end but this seems to to be spreading around the world just after the world had started learning what damage tactics like this cause. They create the smoke and let the people rage with fire.