Tuesday 16 October 2018

In praise of Breitbart: free speech will drive out fake news

The New York Times and the Washington Post were excellent at one time, boring, factual newspapers that put British ones to shame, almost as enjoyably dull as German ones. Not any more. They now read like propaganda sheets.

They worry about fake news in the social media but if they do not publish exactly fake news what they publish is hugely biased, for example against the current U.S. administration.

The bias during the 2016 U.S. presidential election was preposterous. I read headline after headline in the MSM in Google news saying Trump was losing and clicked to find he was doing well.

The Los Angeles Post had the first poll showing Trump in the lead. Papers commission polls to get attention grabbing headlines and therefore readers, but the 
Los Angeles Post
journalists were terrified that their friends would think they believed Donald Trump might win and so wrote the poll up telling readers that it was almost certainly a fluke outlier. 

In fact, it was the one accurate poll. 

So not fake news but fake spin. 

I gave up on the MSM and trusted instead my late, great friend libertarian blogger Peter Risdon, who from close reading of the polls and the early voting figures predicted a Trump win.

Breitbart is mocked and has a very unjustly bad name, but it's pretty accurate and more accurate about Muslim stories than the qualities. Breitbart scooped the world by bringing to light the sex assaults by Arab migrants in Cologne.

It scooped the English speaking world again 18 hours ago in Cologne by saying that a

German magazine reports sources who claim that the suspect who was holding hostage a young woman is indeed a sympathiser of the Islamic State. No other English language source did so.

The BBC said 'the incident does not appear to be terrorist related'. 

Perhaps the BBC thought it was another example of mental illness, an all too widespread problem nowadays.

A lot of the value of Breitbart is that it translates into English things published in Europe and not reported elsewhere in the English language media. It is certainly biased but openly so. It has an angle, a genuinely conservative immigration-sceptic, Islamo-sceptic one and this gives it an urgency that drives it to produce good reporting. This is something that the newspapers don't have.

As Facebook, Twitter, etc. bow to pressure from high places to censor fake news it is not the BBC or the New York Times they will censor but many truthful sites, left-wing, right-wing, Muslim, anti-Muslim. 

But untruthful sites should be allowed to say what they want too, so long as they don't defame people or incite crimes.

I turn to Breitbart for the truth on any terrorist or Muslim story. As Douglas Murray said, when it comes to Muslim terrorism mainstream journalists see their role as negotiating between their readers and the truth.

Here is a recent and very important article in Breitbart by James Delingpole headlined:

‘Civil War Is Coming to Europe’ Warns German Politician
It is a good example of how much more accurate Breitbart is on migrants than any newspaper including any conservative newspaper, to say nothing of television stations.

I am not worried at all about fake news. Fake news you have always with you and true news drives out fake news if it is allowed to do so. In other words, if the truth is not censored or hidden. Fake news flourishes in dictatorships where the official news is fake and rumours are believed. 

I am very worried about the truth being suppressed, as it is all the time nowadays and will be more and more in the future.

One of the casualties of Facebook censorship a year or so ago was an Israeli journalist called Jonathan Spyer, whose Facebook account was deleted permanently after he said that 'a low-level insurgency' was happening in Europe. After much outrage, he got his account back but I am reminded of the old 18th century legal maxim, the greater the truth the greater the libel.


  1. I am not worried at all about fake news.

    Newspapers have been in the fake news business since newspapers were invented. Newspapers have always been in the propaganda business. The good old days when journalists were brave and honest and devoted to the truth never existed. Journalists have always been whores.

    The only difference is that in the past different newspapers had slightly different biases. One paper would publish right-wing lies while another published left-wing lies. Now they all publish pretty much the same globalist lies.

    I doubt if it is possible to have an honest press. No honest man has ever wanted to be a newspaper publisher. There is no real difference between a state-controlled press and a "free" press. They tell different lies but they all tell lies. The temptation to abuse the power of the press is so overwhelming that to date no-one who has had that power has been able to resist it. That applies equally to government and privately-owned media outlets.

  2. Breitbart is tendentious and misses any balances. For example, what picture is one to get of Brussels when reading Breitbart? Will they report on the first Congolese mayor in Brussels ? I am waiting.