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Australia is burning — and Rupert Murdoch’s media empire is leading the climate coverup: NYT

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Even as news of massive forest fires in Australia put the world’s focus on dealing with the climate change crisis, the right-wing media empire run by Rupert Murdoch has been leading the charge to deny, deflect, and distract.

The New York Times reports that Murdoch-owned media outlets have pushed out multiple stories that downplay the role of climate change in the intensity of the fires, while also pinning the blame on groups ranging from environmentalists to arsonists.

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“On Wednesday, Mr. Murdoch’s News Corp., the largest media company in Australia, was found to be part of another wave of misinformation,” the Times reports. “An independent study found online bots and trolls exaggerating the role of arson in the fires, at the same time that an article in The Australian making similar assertions became the most popular offering on the newspaper’s website.”

Joëlle Gergis, a climate scientist at the Australian National University, tells the Times that the Murdoch papers are being “reckless and extremely harmful” in their efforts to obfuscate about the real reasons that fires in the country have grown more intense as the planet has warmed.

“It’s insidious because it grows,” he said. “Once you plant those seeds of doubt, it stops an important conversation from taking place.”

In addition to casting about false blame for the fires, Murdoch’s papers have also tried denying that the fires are really that much of a problem.

“Not true, scientists say, noting that 12 million acres have burned so far, with 2019 alone scorching more of New South Wales than the previous 15 years combined,” the Times reports.

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Internet buries Meghan McCain for ‘rude and condescending’ Twitter attack on critics of her ‘The View’ antics

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On Saturday morning "The View" co-host Meghan McCain snapped back at some of her online critics who complained about her observations and demeanor on the popular ABC show -- which was not received very well as one might expect.

According to conservative commentator -- who also is the daughter of the late Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) -- wrote:  "It’s called “The View”... I am paid to give another view. If you’re deeply triggered by a diversity of opinions and want to watch a show where everyone just sits around agreeing with one another on everything, feel free to find a show called “The Same”...."

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2020 Election

At Joe Biden’s eleventh-hour rally in Nevada, many union members remain uncommitted

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On the eve of the Nevada caucuses, former Vice President Joe Biden, who has referred to himself as "middle-class Joe," had a last-minute chance to connect with middle-class Nevada voters before Saturday's caucuses. At a barbecue with burgers, hot dogs, and ice cream sandwiches, attendees that included firefighters and iron workers gathered for what was advertised as a precinct captain training — or to simply hear Biden's pitch. Indeed, many attendees of the barbecue were still undecided a mere day before caucusing.

This article first appeared in Salon.

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Trump’s NSC is ignoring intelligence reports and basing policy on handouts of Trump’s tweets: report

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According to a report from the New York Times, members of the National Security Council under Donald Trump no longer uses their extensive knowledge of international relations, politics, and history to formulate foreign policy security proposals for the president's review -- and are instead using the president's tweets to make policy based upon his desires and social media proclamations.

The report begins with noting that council members are often handed printouts of the president's tweets when they convene and are expected to use his words as their guide to formulate proposals that will likely find favor with the president.

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