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Obama Uses Disinformation to Fight ‘Disinformation’

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AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

Barack Obama wants the government to work with Big Tech to fight “disinformation” on the Internet that “can’t be left solely to private interests.”  That’s what it all boiled down to when you cut through the clutter of words, the meandering caveats, and the agreeable generalizations during his speech at Stanford University’s Cyber Policy Center last week.


If you listened to the speech carelessly, you could swear he had returned to the more reasonable Obama of 2004 who said, “There is not a black America, or a white America and a Latino America and Asian America – there’s the United States of America.”

But we know better.  

As author Shelby Steele once put it, Obama is a “bound man.”  A man who, to be authentic to his race and now his party, is bound to be inauthentic to the life he’s actually lived.  Being inauthentic is now in his public DNA. And for him, it works.  For America, it’s a tragedy, especially given all the mayhem he’s unleashed.  

No one man in recent history was more suited to dispel the disinformation about racism in America, yet no one exacerbated racial division more than Barack Obama.  With all the applause he’s gotten as the moderate-sounding priest of liberal-leftist ideology, Obama will never change, no matter how loud reality screams.  

So while the country goes to Hell in a handbasket, as usual, the man with no office left to run for – the one who is best suited to talk sense into a party of political psychopaths, continues to cordially dump fuel on the political infernos that rage inside America.  

Just as he and his party use racism (“whiteness”) to fight racism, Obama smattered his Stanford speech with melodious-sounding disinformation to fight disinformation.  For people like Elon Musk, censuring contrary opinion is a threat to democracy; for Obama, contrary opinion – the kind he really loathes – is a threat to democracy.  


This man is now addicted to using his international, post-presidential influence to dope up a world of co-dependent malcontents with Utopian soliloquies of unity, equity, and “progress” that pretend to solve imaginary problems in an alternative universe that doesn’t exist. 

And it’s a win-win.  Obama’s preaching gives them a moral high.  In return, they clap, which satisfies his fix for political dopamine.  

“[O]ur new information ecosystem is turbocharging some of humanity’s worst impulses …” Obama said.  “Inflammatory, polarizing content” on social media exacerbates division and “chronic political dysfunction,” which is why he says he’ll support an Accountability and Transparency Act being proposed by a bipartisan group of senators.  He knows this new “regulatory structure” won’t eradicate disinformation but hopes it helps in “slowing the spread.”  

Then he spread disinformation.   

Putin and autocrats around the globe who subvert democracy, undermine human rights, and ignore international law, he said, are a harbinger for conservatives who disagree with Democrats on racism, voting, and the COVID response. 

“Right here, in the United States of America, we just saw a sitting president deny the clear results of an election and help incite a violent insurrection …, Obama said.  “Not only that, but a majority of his party, including many who occupy some of the highest offices in the land, continue to cast doubt on the legitimacy of the last election, and are using it to justify laws that restrict the vote, making it easier to overturn the will of the people …”


While praising those who’ve come up with “new models for a more inclusive, equitable capitalism, and activists who use social media to “shine a light on injustice and mobilize people on issues like climate change and racial justice,” Obama railed against those who peddle information that “make it impossible to tell the difference between, say, a peer-reviewed article by Dr. Anthony Fauci and a miracle cure being pitched by a huckster.”

“All we see is a constant feed of content where useful, factual information and happy diversions, and cat videos, flow alongside lies, conspiracy theories, junk science, quackery, white supremacist, racist tracts, misogynists screeds.” 

And what does he mean by “lies, conspiracy theories, junk science, quackery” and so forth?  

“Take COVID,” he said.  “… despite the fact that we’ve now, essentially clinically tested the vaccine on billions of people worldwide, around 1 in 5 Americans is still willing to put themselves at risk and put their families at risk rather than get vaccinated.  People are dying because of misinformation.”   

As if the evidence that shows that the CDC’s tyrannical COVID response – lockdowns, censuring information, suppressing safe drugs for outpatient treatment, and suppressing information on the vaccine’s side effects – is all “quackery.” 


On the 2016 election, Obama bemoaned the fact that a majority of Republicans still insist, “without a shred of evidence,” he said, that “illegitimate President Biden’s victory” was not legitimate.

“People like Putin and Steve Bannon, for that matter, understand it’s not necessary for people to believe this information in order to weaken democratic institutions,” he said.  “You just have to flood a country’s public square with enough raw sewage. You just have to raise enough questions, spread enough dirt, plant enough conspiracy theorizing that citizens no longer know what to believe.”

See my point?  It’s an alternative universe.  In Obama’s world, Democrats and the leftist media undermining Trump’s legitimacy with digital land fields of “raw sewage” pouring in every single day in every single year he was elected, was just democracy at work.  

And even as new information surfaces that challenges their settled disinformation on COVID, voting, race, crime, and illegal immigration, they still paint Trump and his supporters as “conspiracy theorists, quacks, and hucksters.”

But if you put it all in perspective, disinformation and political partisanship in the press are as old as Thomas Jefferson, who hated it all with a passion.


“I deplore … the putrid state into which our newspapers have passed and the malignity, the vulgarity, and mendacious spirit of those who write for them,” Jefferson wrote in 1814.  “… These ordures [pieces of manure] are rapidly depraving the public taste and lessening its relish for sound food.”

Arguably much worse in his day, Jefferson still advocated for the unrestricted flow of information, and never suggested that government should step in to regulate, as Obama is doing, despite the “mendacious spirit of those who write for them.” 

What Obama demonizes as “disinformation” and extremism on the right – the kind that he says threatens democracy – is really a natural response to the actual extremism coming from the left, extremism that’s getting people killed.  

Using policies, laws, the intelligence apparatus, the courts, big business, or Big Tech to regulate and outlaw conservatives who beg to differ with Democrats on how to solve deep problems, is the real threat to democracy.  

So Obama, please, just retire.  Freedom of speech, even the kind we despise, is not an existential threat to democracy.  But if you’re really looking for something to do, I hear Chicago can use some help.

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