Alt-Facts and Obfuscation: Where the Real World Goes to Die

in search of truth © pam lazos

The world is faced with problems
And many illusions
Love is the man overstanding
It’s the only solution
— Peter Tosh, Where You Gonna Run

Alt-Facts.  Doesn’t it roll off the tongue? It feels like too much fried food sitting in the belly, a big blob of grease and fat you thought you wanted but discovered too late it came with a price — one our entire country is now paying, all gunked up on so many alt-facts and disinformation that we may collectively vomit.

I think Kellyanne Conway coined the term alternative facts, but she didn’t start the mess.  Alt-facts have always been with us, but with her PR skills, she transmogrified them and now we live in a world where alt-facts are perceived as the norm.  How about a few of the highlights:  

– The most extensive and arguable successful democratic experiment ever undertaken, America, the spirit of liberty and self-rule, a government by the people and for the people, is about to go tits up;

– School shootings that have become the norm — so much so that when 19 school children lost their lives (in a way that makes Al Capone’s antics look like a day at the beach) and their dignity, their faces so mangled by bullet fire that the forensics team had to look at their clothing to identify them — and the conservatives’ only answer to such unbridled violence is more violence in the form of good guys with guns; 

– The overturning of Roe v. Wade resulting in a lack of abortion rights in at least half the states in the country and which may soon morph into a lack of access to the most mundane of family planning tools — birth control — meaning that at their age, I officially had more rights over my own body than my daughters do today, and if conservatives have their way, rather soon now women will be forced back into the home to mind the children while men go out to earn the daily bread, a quaint, Norman Rockwell notion of America that wasn’t true in Rockwell’s time and certainly isn’t true today;

– The possible reversal of a hard won right to gay marriage with Clarence Thomas’ targeting such rights with his dubious and shaky legal arguments.  I mean, if Ginni is allowed to run around claiming election fraud, riling up the masses rather than stay home and washing Clarence’s dirty underwear, why should the rest of America’s women be any different?  BTDubs, Thomas is the best argument for impeaching a Supreme Court Justice that I’ve heard yet.  Just ask Anita Hill;

– The never ending ridiculousness of the lie that Trump won the 2020 election despite losing over 60 times at bat;

– Stunts like DeSantis pulled recently spending $12 million to send Texan (i.e., not Florida) migrants to Martha’s vineyard just to pull a snarky political stunt in the run up to the November elections while simultaneously busting on the feds every chance he gets but holding his hand out, strong and steady, to ask for FEMA money when hurricane Ian came barreling through.  Just imagine if Trump were in office right now and it was a blue state asking for money.  He’d do everything he could not to deliver;

– Fox News — really it should have it’s own award category, something like, “Most Likely to Sow Discord and Divisiveness in a Nation” and who, with the likes of Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson have made bald-faced lies and the nah-ah and I know I am but what are? you defenses de rigueur —which refused to stream the first night of the January 6th hearings for fear their followers would hear the truth and move on to other channels.  Fox blatantly and with nary a care for Truth continues to lie on national television on a nightly basis, meaning none of their loyal followers know what the hell is really going on in the world as they’ve been lied to since the beginning, to wit, millions of people still think Trump won the 2020 election, including Ginni.

And these are just a few of the highlights.  I haven’t even gotten into the environmental stuff, like Jair Bolsinaro — another Trump-esque political figure — selling the Amazon rain forests off to the highest bidders or even just giving it away for free because, why?  Does he hate people being able to breathe?  And this guy is up for re-election.

Moreover, does anyone actually believe we are going to solve the tandem climate and water crises with any kind of expeditiousness if we are barely paying attention to them?  If your house was on fire you’d stop what you were doing and put it out, right?  Otherwise you wouldn’t have a place to live.  Well, every year, over 70,000 wildfires rage across the country and the world, but unless you are there and breathing in the smoke, you aren’t thinking much about it — and that’s exactly what’s happening with our national environmental policy.   It will get worse, mind you, if the Supreme Court rules against water and wetlands in the Sackett case, the latest in the battle against environmental protection.  Here’s another one.  If someone tells you there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish by the year 2050 would you be upset or would you shrug and say, “alt-facts, we have plenty of fish”.  If so my friend, have been gaslit by any number of sources, but my money is on Fox News.  Yo, it’s not too late to turn the channel, but time is getting exceedingly tight, just sayin’.

Look, I get that traveling across the plains of universality to try and see the other guy’s point of view is an impossibility for some people, but if the uber-conservatives would be so kind as to listen up because time is short and there will not be enough gold in the world for you to claw back any of the myriad gifts this country has been blessed with and squandered in our short history:  if you consider your life to be so inconsequential that you’d label it a throw away one just to be right, I respectfully request that you step aside and let others who actually care about our future, our planet, and the future of humanity to step up and get to work. 

There is virtually no problem on earth that can’t be solved by honest communication.  Can we start please?  Let’s show the alt-factioneers to the door so the rest of us can focus on fixing what’s broken.  And if you suspect your news outlets of being less than truthful — change the channel, or better yet, just turn off the the TV.

pam lazos 10.10.22

About Pam Lazos

writer, blogger, environmentally hopeful
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20 Responses to Alt-Facts and Obfuscation: Where the Real World Goes to Die

  1. I was hooked on your every word, Pam, and I share your disbelief and outrage. I saw a news report a couple of nights ago that a lot of people in the US will vote in November based on gas prices and inflation. The commentator practically leapt out of the television. Good luck with gas prices if we lose our democracy or our planet! If your home is flooded or on fire. If you have three extra kids you can’t afford. If you get shot while grocery shopping, or your marriage is no longer valid. It makes me insane. But that’s what we get when the truth no longer matters. Keep speaking the truth anyway!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Linda Schaub says:

    [I’m sorry, I was quite behind here at Reader Pam and just reading this now.]

    Reading this post just depresses the heck out me – I know these facts, but seeing them delineated as you have done here makes it even more sobering. We had the Oxford High shooting here in Oakland County, Michigan last November 30th. While that event may not have made the headlines as much as the Uvalde tragedy, or the Parkland tragedy, (and who can forget those parents’ grief-stricken faces at last week’s jury’s verdict, but I digress), we lost four students, others injured and the parents, who are in the same jail as their son, are now trying to disassociate themselves from him and their bad parenting saying “we are not guilty by association!” You bought him a gun for an early Christmas present, you were called to the school because he was searching for ammo on the internet while in class – the teachers, counselors, parent all failed as this kid was sent back to class, then went on a shooting rampage and had a hit list of classmates. And last week, three students in this same school district made threatening messages on social media, which closed the schools, all threatening to kill – one kid had three of his father’s guns in his backpack when confronted.

    I am sorry to live in such a messed-up world. I was at a busy park yesterday, soaking up the sun and taking photos and some guy in a pickup truck shouted out the window in a jeering voice “so are you alive because you wear a mask?” Maybe I am over-protective of myself as I’ve had all the shots that one can have, but I take no chances – it’s a busy venue and I wore a blue surgical paper mask. Of course I couldn’t give him a smart-aleck retort because chances are he likely had a gun and would’ve used it or went and damaged my car, so I said “I guess so” and moved on.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Pam Lazos says:

      My go to retort in these crazy times seems to be “are you effing kidding me,” but I agree with you that you can’t say it because next you’ll be getting shot. It’s a horribly unstable time we live in and I hope we course correct soon, Linda. 😘♥️

      Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        Let’s hope for the best Pam, but my confidence level is zero or make that in negative territory. It’s a fractured world … once a week we have a barricaded gunman, or a nut case on the freeway, shooting due to road rage or for no reason, or there are copycats on the expressway now. I need the peace that nature walks give me, but I steer clear from everyone these days. Sigh.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Pam Lazos says:

        I feel the same, Linda. The only peace is in the woods and the rest of the world has gone batshit crazy! 😜

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Mick Canning says:

    Off to hell in a handcart…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. All of these, are, zooming in on the negative, if the new, the media can report more in the, positive things happening in the world, then, maybe, the world would not be, going bad, but, bad news sell better, so…

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Indeed th4e world is ….very interesting place right now…….

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh yes, and the beat just goes on and on. In great numbers voters don’t seem to get what’s at stake or what’s happening. I fear that things will have to get extremely dark before it gets better, but it might just be too late. I understand how power causes greed in some people, but I don’t understand how just everyday neighbors can be so blind and even stupid.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Ken Dowell says:

    Depressing, isn’t it.

    Liked by 1 person

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