Fear, Lies, and Pixels: The Dark Side of Digital Propaganda

In the realm of digital technology, the COVID-19 pandemic has seen a surge in the use of propaganda in public health campaigns. However, these campaigns are reportedly having unintended negative effects. The digital world, with its social media platforms and digital technologies, is said to incentivize polarization and profit from culture wars. The current information ecosystem, optimized for advertising, is escalating these wars and leading to the dysregulation of emotional response and cognitive ability. The emergence of digital technologies has reportedly undermined the effectiveness and legitimacy of traditional propaganda approaches, leading to a loss of legitimate authority and a rise in citizen cynicism and distrust.

In a related vein, the influence of Silicon Valley in politics and media, along with the ethical concerns about AI, have been highlighted. The collapse of FTX and scrutiny of Farmington Bank, along with the criminalization of Bitcoin mixers, have raised questions about the connections between US and Chinese elites. The importance of individual action for a better world has been underscored, even as Bitcoin evangelism and its potential co-optation are being discussed.

In the world of journalism, the New York Times has come under fire for promoting claims of mass rape by militants during the Israel-Hamas conflict. Critics argue that the newspaper relied on unreliable sources and promoted false narratives to support Israel’s actions in Gaza. The need to question and challenge such narratives, even if they are sensitive, has been emphasized in order to expose the truth and prevent further atrocities.

Meanwhile, the concept of “transhumanism” and the “internet of bodies” has been addressed. Critics argue that the idea of injectable nanobots connecting the body to the internet is based on technological miracles and has not been achieved. They also refute the idea that nanomaterials like graphene can control the body, warning against scaremongering and the narratives of transhumanism, nanotechnology, and synthetic biology.

In the legal sphere, the U.S. Supreme Court is set to hear three cases that could significantly impact the federal administrative state. These cases involve the Securities Exchange Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and the validity of the Chevron doctrine, which requires courts to defer to federal agencies’ reasonable interpretations of unclear statutes.

In the realm of international relations, Scottish historian and Hoover Institution Fellow, Niall Ferguson, has published a column mourning the death of the imperial project. He criticizes Americans for insisting on domestic investment when they should be supporting freedom and democracy around the world.

Finally, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has proposed a rule that would allow the sale of federal lands, water, and air to “Natural Asset Companies” (NACs) under certain conditions. Critics argue that this scheme could give control of land to corporations, potentially including foreign investors like China and Russia, and prevent productive use of the land. The SEC’s proposal has raised alarm among those who fear a loss of property rights and personal freedoms.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://peakprosperity.com/daily-digest/fear-lies-and-pixels-the-dark-side-of-digital-propaganda/