How real journalists can combat "fake news"

There has been a lot of discussion about "fake news," with much it it fueled by the rise of the Internet. It used to be that getting your story in the newspaper faced a certain high barrier. Your item had to be newsworthy, of course, but it was also subject to review and confirmation by the reporter or editor. Publication conveyed a certain amount of legitimacy. If a mistake was made, a correction would be run.

But something strange started to happen several years ago, and maybe it was started by our love and fascination with celebrities.

Sanctuary Town fallacies

I wanted to thank Richard (Anping) Liu for his articles on the Sanctuary City/Sanctuary Town issue, as well as the other contributors we have had over the last couple of months on this topic. Richard's most recent article examines crime rates for Sanctuary Cities and Towns versus state averages.

How Chief Justice Roberts' decision helped Trump

There are probably a few big reasons and a million little reasons why Donald Trump won the Presidency, not the least of which was the flawed persona of his main opponent. But history will show that Chief Justice Roberts was a primary cause.

Roberts' correct decision not to intervene in overturning Obamacare led to Trump's victory as it galvanized opponents of President Obama and his policies, and Mrs. Clinton ran more on Obama's legacy than on her husband's. Embracing Obama allowed the many failures of Obama's presidency to be assigned to candidate Clinton.

Finance Committee fails Acton Town Meeting

At last night's Annual Town Meeting (TM), my friend Charlie Kadlec proposed an amendment to the town funding warrant article to transfer $1 million from our reserves to lower next year's tax rate, which would have saved the average taxpayer around $125. The average single-family property tax bill would still have increased to $10,988, a 2.77% increase, but would have stayed under $11,000. His amendment was defeated by about 160-110.

The clash of dictators with free societies

PART ONE IS HERE: http://www.actonforum.com/blogs/allenn/dealing-authoritarian-dictators

I'm up in Canada for a trip this week, and read the regional "Globe and Mail" newspaper, which reported on a recent attempt by the Canadian government to agree to a criminal extradition treaty with China.

Dealing with authoritarian dictators

The concept of free trade is great. We should assume every bilateral relationship with other countries would be based on the ideal of free trade. Free trade provides an economic benefit to our citizens, in that it brings cheaper, or better-quality, goods to our citizens than we otherwise would have had. And in general, competition improves the products made by domestic manufacturers.

Take the American car industry for example. Without competition, American manufacturers had a virtual monopoly and were able to make cars with planned obsolescence.

The subsidization of America

Today's WSJ had a story about some older guy, holding a cute dog in his lap, who was going to be "paying more" if the Republican plan to replace Obamacare came to pass. Nobody likes to hear about someone "paying more" so I read the article. Turns out he was a vet who ran a small office and who offered health insurance to his staff. But his costs would rise because he had an older workforce whose premiums would increase under the new Republican healthcare plan. What a shame, what an injustice!

This is an example of misleading news, if not fake news.

10 Billion apologies

The mainstream media continues to act like the tail is wagging the dog with regards to Donald Trump. He apparently spends a couple minutes on a "tweet" and the media spends several weeks dissecting it, discussing it, and commenting on it. What a master manipulator this guy is.

Fake News, part four

I was reading my favorite WSJ this morning and saw an intriguing headline in the Best of the Web column, which I will paraphrase: Is Mona Lisa happy or sad?

The politics of Living in Fear

Emotions are funny things. Our lives are governed by doing things that make us feel good, and trying to avoid things that make us feel bad.

I guess pain is also like an emotion. The body produces physical pain in order to teach you how to protect yourself. If you touch the hot stove and it really hurts, you won't likely do that again. But if you were able to sever the nerve connections between your finger and your arm, so that the pain message never got to your brain, you could hold your finger to the stove until it was well done.