The new-found concern over fake news turns out itself to be fake.
In a recent news conference with German chancellor Angela Merkel, Barack Obama "sharply criticized the spread of fake news online," according to the New York Times.
The newspaper went on:
"Mr. Obama used the moment to make a passionate and pointed attack on bogus news stories disseminated on Facebook and other social media platforms, twice calling such false reports a threat to democracy in his hourlong news conference."
Obama has not been alone in his criticism. A flurry of critical news reports on fake news has emerged as Clintonites scurry to deflect blame for their election failure.
USA Today reported, "After devastating loss, Democrats left searching for answers." And it is "fake news" that's emerging as a preferred scapegoat. Clinton-leaning news outlets have been quick to buy into this. The New York Observer pointed out that "the mainstream media is now diverting the blame to 'fake news.'"
So suddenly Obama and Clinton have become purists about the integrity of news? Think about how outright duplicitous that is.
In Obama's cited news conference the president warned Trump "of the need to take the job of the presidency seriously and to be tough on Russia," and said that he hoped Trump "also is willing to stand up to Russia where they are deviating from our values and international norms," according to the Times.
And why does Russia need such tough standing up to? It is pretty well accepted, principally in the US and UK, that Putin is a ruthless, territorially aggressive dictator who will stop at nothing.
But where's the evidence for all that? It comes from a long-running series of fake news stories that have appeared in mainstream media. They range from Putin's alleged clampdown on the press freedom that emerged under Yeltsin, to the polonium murder of Alexander Litvinenko, to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. I've documented in my books that these allegations and others are specious and without a clear factual basis.
Another oft-reported claim is that Putin is bent on conquering neighboring countries. A June 2015 Guardian headline read: "Obama lambasts Putin: you're wrecking Russia to recreate Soviet empire."
But there's no real evidence of that intention. Obama and scores of other American political leaders of both parties have been in the business of propagating fake news like this about Russia for over fifteen years now.
This is fake news that has pushed Russia and the US, the world's only two nuclear superpowers, toward the brink.
Where's the outrage over that?
Obama and those Clintonites who are distressed by the negative consequences of fake news must have tunnel vision.
Here's the final kicker. It concerns whether there is any validity to claims that fake news influenced the presidential election:
Did fake news really overshadow real news, to whatever extent it may have existed? Not so, according to National Review. It ran an article with the headline, "Report on Scourge of Fake News Turns Out to Be Faked."
So now we are left with the tangible impact of years and years of fake news about Russia. There's no fakery about the impact of that fake news. It can clearly be demonstrated that this long history of fake news has shaped world opinions and distorted many political perceptions, all based on the fabrications.
Counteracting all that malicious fake news is something Trump should really take seriously.