19 Comments

While it's probably not appropriate in an academic/journalistic context, I'm inclined to call it, "spraying Musk"

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I kinda want to call it "con-text".

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While I, like you, am just a journalist (though I have a hint of legal training), there's no one name for that kind of lie that comes to mind.

Maybe "preemptive bad faith" though that description is really not up to that task, IMO.

Another description might be "propaganda seeding." That would cover both the lie itself and the bs added to it as fertilizer to make it grow.

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"Bald-faced" is old but appropriate here. But these days I mostly just go with "Republican." Seems to fit most occasions.

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founding

A self-debunking lie

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Feb 8·edited Feb 8

Snopes is full of these videos where the headline is "Congressman Jones absolutely RIPS into AOC at Congressional hearing!" and then the video is Congressman Jones (or maybe Congressman Smith) reading a paragraph from an agricultural appropriations bill, AOC isn't even in the room. Lots of people share because they like the headline and never watch the video.

I also remember a story about the election in the Philippines when Duterte was elected, most people read the news on their phones and they can see the headlines for free, but to read an article costs money to get past a paywall (or maybe more money because more data) so the trick was "Lying headline attached to truthful story that nobody read."

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I don't have a name for it yet either, but the term needs to encapsulate the idea that the answer to the BS claim is in the very next sentence, in this case visible on the same screenshot. "Blind man's lie" sounds both ableist and sexist, so I don't particularly like that. Something to connote that it's a heartbeat away from being disproven.

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"ignoring context" is probably the most accurate description. That's the term places like Snopes use for deciding on classification as "Pants on Fire." The problem with it, as a popular label, is that so many people have no CLUE what "context" means. (I LIKE the suggestion already made of "con text" ). Another term is "lying by omission."

This is akin to what I call statements of implausible deniability, comments at the end of a rabid dog-whistling statement to defuse criticism, knowing full well that the listeners won't HEAR that bit. Best example that comes to mind is trump's "but some, I suppose, are very nice people" after his escalator rant on Mexicans.

The lack of critical thinking education in America is horrifying. The errors occur on both right and left, the latter mostly in the form of overgeneralization and assumptions that if X is a believer of Y, everyone like X must also believe Y. I'm NOT saying your post does this. But it is common enough to watch out for. The right, of course, is way more prone to all sorts of thought errors.

We can't do anything immediate about the thought-corruption habits of others, part It behooves us to watch our own reasoning.

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Fact-checking chaff, maybe?

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I had a T-Shirt 25 years agothat said Faux New in thier logo and wore it out. I'd love to have that shirt again.

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I was thinking it’s like preemptive gaslighting. Affirmative gaslighting? It’s a form of conditioning, showing people evidence and telling them it means the opposite. I’m thinking of that Star Trek TNG episode with Picard and the lights. They’re training their supporters to see what they tell them to see, to ignore objective evidence.

“The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command.”

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Inigo Montoya Lie? "That evidence doesn't mean what you think it means..."

Though I guess it would be a Vizzini Lie, and Inigo just calls it.

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Since we've been having to put up with the Merde Ox dynasty for over thirty years now, I would suggest this kind of lie be named "Stacy's Hat" (The Simpsons s5e14, 1994 ffs). It's the same doll, people can see it is the same doll (if they bother), but the sales-person is making sure the attention is on an easier-to-distract-with attachment which "makes good sense" to the audience. Emerald City's wizard of Oz (not Aus) did the same thing, since many never notice he was also the doorman when Team Toto first got there even though he had a musical number (Horse Of A Different Color; yes, same actor). Rupert is even older than that movie... Coincidence? Inquiring minds want to know!!

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In the "The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth," trilogy this would be the lie that is "Not the Whole Truth".

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I think we can just call it Musking. Let's hope it attaches to him the way Santorum attached to its namesake.

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Fill in the facts? Read over the lines? Maybe some phrase like that could capture the way they feed their audience just enough information to seem to have evidence while prompting them to read it a certain way and expecting them not to meaningfully engage with the evidence that's actually (not) there.

How about something like generative (or artificial) reporting? The propagandists provide a prompt and leave their primed audiences to hallucinate the story.

Harry Frankfurt distinguished between lying and bullshitting by saying the latter involves no regard for truth. I wonder if that could be elevated to something like Minotaur-shit—there's no regard for truth and there's some element of human cunning, but it's the dumbest possible form of it.

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