Jackie the second article in 2 days using a shock tactic in the first para to get attention: check this Baum guy who just does not want to ever let go of the saga as a source of cheap shots. The worst of it is that the AGE, in its death throes is pontificating about the truth, as if they ever let the truth stand in the way of getting loads of clicks. At least your article is a bit of fun. Baum is serious. But what is even funnier is that the Truth, that Baum refers to was once bought by Fairfax. They really thought they could be all things to all people. That just makes them hypocrites.
The truth is out there Mr Bogut, you just have to look
Date: December 7 2016
Hey, Andrew Bogut, did you know that your footy club, Essendon, has a secret laboratory in a dank chamber underneath its Tullamarine HQ, where it not only churns out peptides by the thousands but does a nice sideline in methamphetamines, supplying bikie gangs all over the northern suburbs?
Well, what about your basketball club, the Dallas Mavericks, and their hidden slavery racket, exploiting all those illegals from just across the border? Surely you are across that? And then there is the Golden State Warriors, your old club, and their Russian connections and their billion-dollar arms-trading arm … no, better, let’s make it their weapons of mass destruction.
You must know? Surely?
How do I know these things? Well, I could tell you I read about them on social media, but in fact, I just made them all up here, knowing they’ll soon be on social media, and from there they’ll find their way onto a few fake news sites, and will be researched and found by real news sites to be malicious lies, but by then will have a currency of their own, and if I can get a few big names like yours to endorse them – or even deny them, who cares really? – they’ll become impossible ever to quash.
And – who knows? – one day someone who has taken them a bit too much to heart might walk into the True Value Solar Centre, quivering with outrage, and decide to take justice into his own hands.
This might all seem preposterous, except that during the American presidential election campaign, a cartel of fake news sites came up with a most fabulous conspiracy about how Hillary Clinton and her gang were running a child trafficking ring out of a pizzeria in Washington DC, a story that was quickly validated in the post-truth void of social media, and was given a mighty push along when Bogut, among others, authenticated it, tweeting that where there was so much smoke – all out of a smoke machine, remember – there must be fire, and “if only 1% of this #pizzagate scandal is true, all people involved deserve life in prison (or worse). #sick”.
Put another way, if 1 per cent of a story fits with your outlook on the world, the other 99 per cent doesn’t matter. We’ve all been guilty. #tick.
When social media users challenged Bogut about the origins the story, and pointed out that fact-checking sites that had completely discredited it, he mocked mainstream media, and poured scorn on fact-checking sites, and so we quickly reached the point where all pedlars of fake news have to do is to accuse the mainstream of being the true pedlars of fake news and, hey presto, there you have it, equivalence, without a fact in sight.
What part #pizzagate played in the demise of Clinton’s candidacy, who can say? But we can say that #pizzagate continues with a life of its own, occasioning periodic death threats to the owner of the parlour and this week, a man to walk into the shop and fire two gunshots while looking to liberate non-existent kids from non-existent captivity.
Bogut is a formidable basketballer, who played a manful role in Australia’s gallant tilt at the windmills in Rio. He is also, more than most sportspeople, socially engaged. I could say, quirkily, doubtfully, provocatively engaged, but he would say the same of my world view. Let’s leave it at tweet for twat.
But because of this, Bogut should know better, much better. Because he is in a position of some social influence, he has responsibility to know better. He knows it. On one of his portentous sallies on to social media earlier this year, Bogut was contemptuous of a protest against police brutality in Melbourne. “Protesting against Police brutality in Melbourne is like protesting for less jumbo jets to be on highways,” he thundered.
Within hours, Bogut was back, holding up his hand to acknowledge an offensive foul. “Highly regret that tweet,” he tweeted. “Did some research and shocked at the number of police shooting ppl in Melb. Apologies.”
You can’t believe everything you read, Andrew. Truth.