NPR Embarrasses Itself With Misinformation and Blatant Lies
In a broadcast rife with misinformation, disinformation and outright lies, National Public Radio has embarrassed itself while maligning me. The September 21, 2021, broadcast opened with NPR host Robin Young calling me “the biggest disseminator of lies about COVID” — a false claim debunked and rejected by none other than Facebook itself, more than a month earlier.
Young then went on to claim that I started America’s Frontline Doctors, an independent organization that, in reality, I am not a member of and have no affiliation with whatsoever. I don’t even know anyone personally in the organization.
Young interviewed Dr. Humayun Chaudhry, president and CEO of the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB), about the FSMB’s recommendation to state medical boards to fine, suspend and revoke the licenses of doctors who don’t follow the mainstream COVID narrative.
Together, Young and Chaurdhry repeatedly demonstrated they’re either ignorant or deliberately spreading their own misinformation and disinformation when it comes to vaccine hesitancy, COVID treatments such as ivermectin (referring to it as an animal drug that has shown “absolutely no ability” to treat COVID) and medical professionals who are questioning the vaccines.
NPR Relies on Provably False Source
It seems rather obvious that Young is using a single — already discredited — source for her report, namely the Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH), which analyzed 483 pieces of social media content over six weeks1 to come up with what they called the “Disinformation Dozen.”2 I was at the top of that list.
The thing is, Young is actually spreading misinformation herself, because Facebook’s vice president of content policy, Monika Bickert, issued a statement3,4 August 18, 2021, saying there is no evidence to support the CCDH’s claims, and that the people named by the CCDH as being responsible for the vast majority of vaccine misinformation on social media were in fact only responsible for a tiny fraction — 0.05% — of all vaccine content on Facebook. Here’s an excerpt from Bickert’s statement:5
“In recent weeks, there has been a debate about whether the global problem of COVID-19 vaccine misinformation can be solved simply by removing 12 people from social media platforms. People who have advanced this narrative contend that these 12 people are responsible for 73% of online vaccine misinformation on Facebook. There isn’t any evidence to support this claim …
In fact, these 12 people are responsible for about just 0.05% of all views of vaccine-related content on Facebook. This includes all vaccine-related posts they’ve shared, whether true or false, as well as URLs associated with these people.
The report6 upon which the faulty narrative is based analyzed only a narrow set of 483 pieces of content over six weeks from only 30 groups, some of which are as small as 2,500 users. They are in no way representative of the hundreds of millions of posts that people have shared about COVID-19 vaccines in the past months on Facebook.
Further, there is no explanation for how the organization behind the report identified the content they describe as ‘anti-vax’ or how they chose the 30 groups they included in their analysis. There is no justification for their claim that their data constitute a ‘representative sample’ of the content shared across our apps.”
Young and Chaudhry conclude the show by calling on social media companies to strengthen censorship on their platforms and for state medical boards to take a more active role in investigating and revoking the licenses of doctors who don’t stick to the COVID propaganda narrative.
NPR Tosses Ethics in Favor of Propaganda
While NPR’s ethics handbook7 declares the purpose of NPR is to “pursue the truth” and to be “diligent” in their verification of facts, Young’s report clearly failed to live up to these stated ethics.
According to that handbook, NPR journalists are supposed to “take great care to ensure that statements of fact in our journalism are both correct and in context,” and “rigorously challenge both the claims we encounter and the assumptions we bring.”
They’re supposed to “devote our resources and our skills to presenting the fullest version of the truth we can deliver, placing the highest value on information we have gathered and verified ourselves.”
The NPR guideline even states that its journalists must “Be able to identify the source of each fact” reported. Furthermore, they’re supposed to “explain why that person or org
Article from LewRockwell