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Not sure what’s happening with disinformation? Here’s the history, tactics, and real-life examples to help you sort fact from fiction.

In The Beginning, Was the Problem

The Genesis account tells of the snake that plays on the doubts in the back of our minds, our fears that those in power are hiding something from us. The snake doesn’t invent a new thought; he merely stokes a suspicion that Eve already has.

You will not certainly die,” says the snake, “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” …


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President Trump granted pardons to 73 individuals and commuted the sentences of an additional 70 individuals.

A Word About the Limits of Pardon and Commutation Powers:

Pardon powers, which prevent guilty parties from prosecution for for federal crimes committed in the time specified by the pardon, may independently form the basis for criminal charges of obstruction of justice.

In the case of President Clinton’s pardons there was a formal investigation and we should expect one following some of the most irregular pardons we have ever seen.

Standards for Pardon Petitions per the DOJ

In general, a pardon is granted on the basis of the petitioner’s demonstrated good conduct for a substantial period of time after conviction and service of sentence. …


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Following the Jan 6th attack on the Capitol, social media platforms began purging users.

An examination of the social media purge following the Jan 6th attack on the Capitol


Secretary of State Mike Pompeo canceled his last trip abroad, citing the need to ensure a “smooth and orderly transition.” Luxembourg tells a different story.

A Smooth and Orderly Story

Earlier the Washington Post reported,Secretary of State Mike Pompeo canceled his final trip abroad as the nation’s top diplomat on Tuesday, citing the need to ensure a “smooth and orderly transition process” over the next eight days.

Luxembourg’s Foreign Minister recently described Donald Trump as a “criminal,” though Luxembourg is not alone in that. European countries, along with several located in other regions of the world, have reported on the attack as a coup d’etat. For other countries to speak so forcefully and explicitly about the United States says something about how the country’s standing has taken a dive.

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It’s a strange time to make the change given that the attack on our capitol happened nearly a week ago and Pompeo’s aides were already on the ground. …


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Jan 6, 2020 Insurrection at the Capitol in Washington DC

As former Republican Members of Congress, we strongly encourage you to fulfill your constitutional duty to uphold the integrity of the legislative branch and protect American democracy by impeaching President Donald J. Trump.

JANUARY 11, 2021 | Originally published through Pogo

Dear Members of Congress,

As former Republican Members of Congress, we strongly encourage you to fulfill your constitutional duty to uphold the integrity of the legislative branch and protect American democracy by impeaching President Donald J. Trump.

As you were convened to oversee the counting of the electoral college votes on January 6, 2021, the American people watched together in horror when armed protestors stormed the U.S. Capitol Building. Even more horrific was the involvement of President Trump appearing to direct and encourage the protestors. On December 19, 2020, President Trump tweeted, “Big Protest in D.C. on January 6th. …


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Governor Pete Ricketts announced a decision about who can and cannot be vaccinated that is inadvisable and not based upon the best evidence.

Governor Pete Ricketts announced that undocumented workers would be excluded from this batch of vaccines. The rationale was not shared but it is inadvisable and not based upon the best evidence. I can understand the pressure to make constituents happy or that this may appear to be the best choice. Still, the decision is poor and misguided. It is in direct opposition to any potentially sophisticated vaccine strategy. We made this mistake already; we don’t have to make it again.

Infectious diseases don’t respect human labels of any kind, be it borders or citizenship. Nebraska residents and those in the states around you will be less safe as a consequence. As most officials in Nebraska well-know, the state has a significant undocumented population. The fact is that regardless of the legality and whether the well-being of these workers concerns the state, they are there and their presence will affect disease control. Ignoring that is at your residents’ and the Midwest’s peril. …


In journal format, day 344 of the scientist’s log details what has been hardest over the course of the pandemic.

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Watercolor painting by E Rosalie

Day 344 of the scientist’s log:

Among the things that have been hardest in the pandemic, it’s been seeing leadership I once respected, who I thought shared my belief in truth, integrity, and personal responsibility, lay waste to any notion of honesty or character.

Then, everyday people I believed also shared those values, shred any notion of speaking hard truths. Handed the plausible deniability, they embraced it.

I struggle to understand it still.

Knowing what elected officials knew in real-time, they misled Americans who trusted them. My experience was not rare. …


A far-right group purchased an ad warning about a “Bible prophecy” this past June. It featured President Trump and warned of a coming civil war and an explosion in Nashville, Tennessee.

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Image from Metro Nashville PD

A bomb detonated in Nashville, Tennessee early this morning. Police responded to shots fired and found an RV playing a loud warning that stated the vehicle was going to explode. It injured three people who were taken to the hospital, though none were in critical condition. The blast zone left behind is a sight most Americans have only seen in the news happening in other countries.

Whatever the intention, it seems more likely to be a warning or possibly an act intended to influence how the public feels about current events. This past June, an ad ran in a Tennessee newspaper that warned of a bomb linked to Islamic extremists, though the ad offered no supporting evidence. …


Prominent disinformation campaigns, where they appeared, and what they may mean

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DISINFO: We Don’t Assault Freedom of Expression in Russia

STORY: Why are Latvian citizens kept in custody, why are they threatened with legal persecution? They have shared pictures and exercised self-expression. What is wrong with that?

Russia finds the approach needlessly brutal and does not practice such censorship. Everyone writes where they want and what they want in Russia.

DISPROOF: Alexei Navalny would disagree. The leading political opponent to Putin nearly died earlier this year when a Russian agent put a toxic agent in his underwear. …


The world just watched the US disregard the value of human life, mock the rule of law, hand extremists recruiting material, and sabotage its foreign policy. It’s hard to appreciate the extent of the damage.

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BBC

The Pardon of the Blackwater Contractors:

Nicholas Slatten, Paul Slough, Evan Liberty, and Dustin Heard

The White House included four names on its list of pardons who may be unfamiliar, but they should not go without notice. To pardon them is to set free the killers of innocent men, women, and children. The injustice will fuel the next generation of extremists, will sour relations with Iraq, and make others reluctant to partner with us.

This subversion of the rule of law and defense of human life sends the message that corruption is alive, that the US prizes some lives above others. …

About

E. Rosalie

Public health biologist studying at Johns Hopkins | Science writer & artist | Views reflect me alone | Subscribe @ Novel-Science.com

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