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[Ponderings] Fake News

Philip Suzara


[Ponderings] Fake News

By Philip Suzara

Pondering… as I sit here at the edge of my mythical life pond.

One can see many things happening at the edge of life’s pond, as in any pond. Decisions are made there, life changing decisions, defining moments… to get in the pond, or not. The pond is encircled by its edges in different forms and kind: straight, jagged, rough, rocks, pebbles, sand, soil, or mud. Very much like people. No matter the differences we have, we all belong there… around the life pond, inside, outside, at the edge, but there.

Have you ever noticed the preponderance and prevalence of fake news being utilized in our country as a communications tool these days?

I have noticed these types of questionable information insidiously creeping and penetrating cyber platforms which were either created way earlier or chosen to carry such material of disinformation and/or media manipulation from the time the erstwhile despot’s family set foot once again in our country.

Times leading into the campaign period for the presidential elections in 2016 saw the extensive usage of such by the minions of the candidate from Davao. They have hoodwinked many, even from the supposed thinking class to be swayed and become mesmerized followers and believers of the man propped up by this unnatural phenomenon. While a number of their followers have awakened to the “truths” they have been peddled, the minions are still trying to hold on to their numbers with their false narratives. The same effort is currently employed and further sweetened with morsels from plundered wealth by the despot’s son in his on-going presidential candidacy.

While we have also seen this same phenomenon take form and see action in different countries at different times, world “leaders” like Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, and a few more others have resorted to its use, but not as frequently as we have seen in Trump, Putin, Xi Jin Ping, Duterte, and Marcos.

The practitioners of this type of communications, or rather, miscommunications have stumbled upon a new industry where media manipulation is the name of the game; where morality takes up no space, where there are no limits, no ceilings, nor stops to expenditures of their principals to pursue their desired objectives and goals. The run ups could be very staggering costs, indeed!

We have paid trolls and troll farms with many of them believing that it is just another job and peddling fake news is just another day at the office. I simply cannot wrap my head around it… pakensyet, hay kenat!

What is puzzling to me is why there would be a need for fake news at all; why there would be purveyors for such, why there would be users for such, and finally, why there would be believers of such.

I have said before that the advent of the technology of social media and its various platforms, while being a boon to society, in general, where the ease of connectivity has made the world a smaller place is now being compromised with the insidious and even outright corruption of these media manipulations.

It used to be where and when information is presented to you, you take it as though it was the gospel truth right away – without any doubt!

Now, it is a must for one to filter and screen any second-hand information, do a fact-check for it to matter – who sent it to you, what is his background, etc., etc…. you double your effort with third-hand info.

A popular song from the 70s comes to mind, woven and intertwined with this thing about fake news and their purveyors. It may surprise a lot of people who believed it to be a love song – it isn’t!

The song was written by Tim Hardin in 1965 and performed at Woodstock four years later. This was popularized by the duo, the Carpenters in the 70s, Bobby Darin, Karen Dalton, and a few others with a remake by Rod Stewart in 1993.

The song is about a couple who are in a bad relationship – there is gaslighting and lying. The narrator still “loves” her partner; partially out of habit, but she knows what is really happening, but breaking up is hard, especially with a manipulative individual.

Listen to the song, internalize and feel it.

Reason to Believe

If I listen long enough to you

I’d find the way to believe that it’s all true

Knowing that you lied straight face

While I cried

(*) And still I look

To find a reason to believe

Someone like you makes it hard to live

Without somebody else

Someone like you make it easy to give

Never thinking of myself

If you took the time to change my mind

I could find a way

To leave the past behind

Knowing that you lied straight face

While I cried

Repeat (*)

If I listen long enough to you

I’d find the way to believe that it’s all true

Knowing that you lied straight face

While I cried

Repeat (*)

Songwriter: Tim Hardin

It is such a sorry situation when we do find ourselves in the midst of widespread media manipulation, they are like brush fires in our social landscape.

But rise, we must, we must continue to keep our heads above the water in this sea of moral turpitude.

We must reclaim our moral bearings and territory !

Pondering, as I sit here at the edge of life’s pond.

Philip Suzara
Creature of God. Child of the Universe. Global Citizen. Lover of Life. Freedom Fighter. Agent of Change. Lone Wolf. Occasional Consultant for Strategic Communications.

Original publication date on NYK website: March 04, 2022

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