On Monday, former CIA Director Michael Hayden shredded Donald Trump for getting his information from fake news’ site Breitbart.com to promote the conspiracy theory that former President Barack Obama tapped his phone lines before the election. Trump’s accusation has left both Democrats and Republicans scratching their heads.
“There are some outlets that have incredibly powerful lenses by which they view the facts they collect,” Hayden told Business Insider. “I think the Breitbart and the likes are off the chart in terms of shaping data to meet the preconceptions.”
Hayden’s comments follow Mark Levin’s – a conservative radio host – comments which were published by Breitbart, accusing Obama of bugging phones at Trump Tower. The FBI said that report was false. FBI director James Comey said he was “incredulous” over Trump’s accusations on Twitter.
Business Insider reports:
“You have a Breitbart news story essentially launching the Starfleet of the federal government about one of the most horrible political scandals in American history, if true,” Hayden said, adding that it was “very troubling” the president seeming to value Breitbart reports over data compiled by intelligence agencies.
“Breitbart doesn’t do any creative journalism, it just moves the parts around,” Hayden continued. “And I haven’t done this personally, but I’ve heard others say, when you dig into the Breitbart sources, the articles don’t really say that.”
“It’s kind of scary — a post-fact world. How does intelligence survive in a post-fact world?” Hayden added.
Hayden went on to say that “there’s an amazing consistency” on a number of subjects between the information disseminated by Russian outlets and conservative sources such as Drudge Report, radio and television host Sean Hannity, and Breitbart.com.
He’s not lying. Those outlets pretty much parrot the same talking points, and Hannity has seemingly become more pro-Putin through the years. In fact, Hannity deleted a “Make Russia Great Again” retweet, with the Fox host adding “Amen!!” to it.
But the Internet is forever:
— SB LI Champs 🏈 (@Patriots_fan2) January 8, 2017
“There are powerful parallels between the Russian narrative and things being said,” Hayden said, adding that Trump uses similar talking points as well.
Hayden called it “a non-fact based world view.”
“It’s a world view in which pre-existing visions seem to be being used to distort the fact pattern that exists,” he concluded.
The cable news-addicted amateur president skips Intel briefings but reads Breitbart.com in order to get information. That site, which Steve Bannon left to join Trump’s team, literally publishes fake news.
At a military town hall in October last year, Trump praised Russian leader Vladimir Putin as a better leader than Obama. On more than one occasion, Trump has defended Putin for murdering journalists. Later, Trump launched a war on the press and the Intelligence community.
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