In America's two-hundred year history, the tricks for winning elections have evolved. Political spending is greater than ever, and so are the barriers to contend.
Corporations pay money to advertise a voice and reach new audiences, however; to have a political voice, the FEC (Federal Election Commission) has stated laws requiring "Paid for by" disclaimers in its Special Notices on Political Ads and Solicitations brochure. Many businesses such as Facebook are now flagging political ads and are requiring everything questionable to have a disclaimer and come from a verified account. This raises the quality of contributors, but it also becomes more difficult for independent organizations to even have a voice.
While money can always be funneled through others to hide an agenda's trail, a disclaimer is not even required for items that according to the brochure, "cannot be conveniently printed (for example, pens, bumper stickers, campaign pins, campaign buttons and similar small items) or where its display is not practicable (for example, wearing apparel, water towers and skywriting)."
With hot topics, politics can steal the spotlight and distract from the real issues, emphasizing what captivates attention, and bringing the conversation into a candidate's desired territory. Facts can get twisted and over time be argued to an oblivion where the truth is lost.
Political messages can also appear in less obvious forms -- cities, counties, and districts are targeted; from local clubs, events, and even churches -- countless sponsors push politics using algorithms, big data, demographics, and other technologies. Television stations program content to satisfy political messages. Party ideologies play on internal conflicts and tear apart families/communities, friends and neighbors cannot be trusted because beneath the surface, everything might be about revolution.
During recent months, anticipation tremendously grew for August 30, 2019 -- the date the first episode of the Carnival Row series debuts on Amazon Prime Video. Its Google knowledge panel now reads the description, "A human detective and a fairy rekindle a dangerous affair in a Victorian fantasy world; the city's uneasy peace collapses when a string of murders reveals an unimaginable monster."
While the reality of the show is too much for many to resist, people will only have to wait a few more days to experience it for themselves. Including elements of action, romance, and suspense, and seemingly created/inspired by bits, pieces, and concepts from different authors, stories, myths, and legends, its theme aims to entertain the extremely popular audience labeled as fantasy/science-fiction.
Even though Carnival Row hasn't yet aired, websites have started publishing articles and reviews. With other services such as Netflix running competing fantasy/science-fiction (aka Neo-Noir) TV shows, some which premiere the same day -- not saying in this case that they are necessarily, but it leads to wonder how often closely involved business parties are actually the ones behind leaving the passionate consumer reviews and writing the articles which steer people's behaviors and purchases.
Juliane Klein, writer for German website Citizen Z in a review for Carnival Row said, "production designers and idea developers have done a good job... Rather, [instead of more vampires and zombies] they had concentrated on far more mystical beings." A dangerous mix of humans, fairies, centaurs, and other races makes Carnival Row a melting pot surrounding Burgue-area locals avoid. In this fantasy world, tension, distrust, and suspense follows on a mystery to hunt down an active serial-killer. On social media, countless people post and tweet their reasons for why they are excited about the show -- "High fantasy elements brought into a Sherlock Holmes style detective drama just fills a niche I didn't know I was void of..." "This is dark, adult, epic fantasy at its best!"
Those at Amazon Prime Video must be enjoying the series a lot, because they renewed it for a second season before the first season even started airing. Cara Delevingne, with a starring role in the show, has a talent for finding unique projects in which to give incredible character and personality -- she has a growing list of movie, modeling, music, and television accomplishments -- she has recently acted as Crassie Cassie in Her Smell (2019), an alternative/punk rock drummer (and guitarist). Delevingne also played Laureline in sci-fi smash Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (2017). According to Cheatsheet's Carnival Row article written by Fred Topel, for Carnival Row, Cara has put extra time into the character of Vignette Stonemoss to give her the right feel and appearance -- from choreographing fight-scenes, to walking specific ways so her character's wings look the most natural -- including the feelings and limited movements while wings are corseted down and restricted, because rather than using the wings for flying, according Topel, "she hides them most of the time to blend in on the streets of The Burgue."
Co-star and one of the series producers, Orlando Bloom is no stranger to the fantasy scene either -- his debut acting roles were the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy and the Pirates of the Carribeanmovies, but his involvement in Carnival Row series is also a major acting plus -- it gives the audience a chance to see Orlando (Rycroft Philostrate) as a different character than that of his typical methods in major past roles (elf, pirate, etc). Instead as a recently-commissioned police detective, the change adds mystery to his character, because he might act differently from how everyone is expecting. In an interviewwith TODAY, Bloom draws connections between Carnival Row and current events. Klein of Citizen Z also said about the countless topics the show discusses, "many of them, despite being embedded in the fantasy genre, are more relevant and relevant in our real world than you can imagine." Executive producer Travis Beacham, in a TVLine interview, used the word, "messy," to describe the war-torn Carnival Row world, and compared it to the real world.
Delevingne agreed in a recent Parade article, “this is one of the most amazing ways to look at something that people don’t want to talk about, like immigration or refugees. It’s hard to swallow because it’s the treatment of people that is just unthinkable. It’s crazy, it’s horrible, it’s disgusting and it’s hard to get a conversation to continue because people would rather be ignorant to it.” Parade also said about the show having a voice, "that is one of the reasons she really wanted to be a part of the project, because the show is a platform to open conversations on a serious subject, while still entertaining."
Carnival Row might be the next exciting show everyone is hoping to find -- streaming goes active in just a few days -- on Friday, August 30, check for Carnival Row at Amazon Prime Video. In the meantime, get introduced and watch its free bonus content.
More discoveries are taking place regarding “troll farms,” along with the Internet Research Agency out of Russia being major culprits in the integrity of U.S. voter systems. While as the midterm elections approach, aside from disinformation campaigns spreading false and seditious smear news, many are finding evidence of ballot tampering and voter fraud.
It isn’t only oligarchs, Russia, or Iran interfering with elections -- politicians often try to buy votes. The Intercept brought together many key politicians’ explanations to how money makes the laws, buys the votes, and leads to the election of ‘criminal’ politicians.
The American collective opinion gets tainted by foreign trolls flooding communications streams. Vox reported, “Twitter, in keeping with its recent promise to Congress to be transparent about its attempts to prevent election interference on its platforms, released more than 10 million tweets that had been circulated by propaganda farms and their associated puppet accounts.”
Some states offering vote-by-mail, which FairVote.org has explained several benefits, allows voters more time to study voter pamphlets as they fill out their ballot. It was even introduced to Congress by members from Oregon (one of many vote-by-mail states), to be adopted federally, however; with the current political landscape, the bill seems to have little chance of passing -- as Vox said, “one of the core truths of US politics is that anything that increases voting turnout hurts Republicans, so they inevitably oppose it.”
Unfortunately, even the vote-by-mail system is under attack as gerrymandering and voter suppression run rampant. Some states have rejected ballots if someone decides the signature doesn’t closely enough match the voter’s name. Brian Krassenstein, reporter for The Hill said, “approximately 8.5% of all vote-by-mail ballots have been rejected by Gwinnett County election officials in Georgia.” He continued to include, “60 percent of residents in Gwinnett County are Latino, black, or Asian.” The voting process seems to be getting compromised every way possible as KPTV in Oregon also reported, "a Portland woman walking in her Cully neighborhood Thursday said she discovered 19 abandoned voting ballots among other apparently stolen mail."
To inspire voter participation, former first lady Michelle Obama said, "while some folks are staying home on election day, other folks are showing up. Democracy continues with or without you."
With so much drama, hype, and propaganda, the media machine drowns society. No longer seeming like the source to get information, the news simply presents what advances its corporate agenda. Stories don’t have to be meaningful or important, the intention is to excite the masses and drive ratings.
Topics are covered to exaggerate the drama which captivates the nation and world. For the media, the boring truth is often less important than the market shares that determine profits for stakeholders. And from that business perspective, regardless of how (in)significant news ultimately is, the news presented can simply be the information that has the best financial impact for a company. Data can be found to support pretty much anything.
If people base their idea of what is important from what seems to capture attention, then they actually don’t know what is important -- they only know what is trending. This has been the true story. Compared to real news, and as the weekend approaches, many passionately hooked fans are more entertained by next week’s exciting episode.
Read Ascendents.net News and stay updated on what to know.
THIS WEEK -- Democratic senators expressed increased dissatisfaction with the Trump administration. As backlogged courts and immigration debates drag on, thousands of lives are re-thrown into the balance. Many of them seem to believe it is a waste of taxpayer efforts, “to carry out a cold partisan vendetta,” and that it, “goes too far,” as on Twitter, Senior Oregon Senator Ron Wyden claimed, “Trump's ICE now plans to deport 350,000 people whose cases were already CLOSED.”
He tweeted another emotional and heartfelt message, “the Trump administration wants to deport unaccompanied children that judges have found to have been abused, abandoned, or neglected. Deporting them now is cruelty for the sake of cruelty,” followed by him also saying, “My @SenateDems colleagues and I are pushing back.”