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America really doesn’t need Silicon Valley to enter the fact checking business

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America really doesn't need Silicon Valley to enter the fact checking business

No American, not even the president, has the right to a social media account. Technology companies are free to ban the users they want. They are free to “examine the facts” of anyone and enforce their policies consistently or fickle. They are free to do all these things.

Even if they shouldn’t.

This week, after years of pressure from the left, Twitter labeled two President Trump tweets – in which he warned of fraud related to ballots sent – as “potentially misleading.” It is a mistake for any platform to drop its neutrality. It will damage trust without changing a single thought.

Once Twitter starts tagging some tweets and not others with “what you need to know,” it will lurk partisan positions. Trump’s Tweet that speeds up the first fact check is a good example. It would make far more sense for the social media giant to mark Trump’s ugly and slanderous tweet about Joe Scarborough. Instead, the company formalized its policy by alleging that Trump had dishonestly claimed that incoming ballots would lead to “fraudulent elections.”

Even though this dispute is totally unfounded, it would be just as untrue to say Russia cheated the 2016 election – a claim that politicians like Adam Schiff and Nancy Pelosi, along with most of the major media outlets, have made for years. But while the president’s rhetoric about voting is debatable, it is also within the normal parameters of contemporary political discourse.

It is not “unfounded” to say that more incoming ballots “will lead to voter fraud,” as Twitter holds. There are dozens of examples of potential voter fraud that are investigated every year. The Heritage Foundation has cataloged 1,285 cases that have been prosecuted.

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That said, arguing that “voter fraud” is a matter that is no more misleading than a conflicting tax cut will harm the poor or that canceled net-neutral rules will destroy the Internet. In practice, “voter fraud” is no more a conspiracy theory than “voter oppression.” Both occur occasionally, but there is no evidence that they have toppled the results of modern elections.

The problem is that only one of these two problems will get the tag “more information” from Twitter, because only one of these two issues offends liberals.

In another tweet, Trump claims that everyone in California will be sent a ballot. This is not true. But so is the tweet pinned by Democratic nominee, Joe Biden: “I don’t believe I have to say this, but please don’t drink bleach.” The president never instructed anyone to drink bleach, but Biden repeated it without stopping, along with many other misleading statements about his GOP notes and policies.

Which brings us to the problem: Who will Twitter make its judge? The fact-checking page redirects users to the disclaimer by CNN, The Washington Post, Vox, HuffPost and other outlets that often deceive their audience with sophistication that is far more sophisticated than the president’s.

These outlets like to invoke the authority of experts, but not experts whose conclusions conflict with them. There is a reason why we debate the issue rather than appointing “truth judges” to pass verdicts: For the most part, politics is a dispute not because of facts but values.

As often happens, Trump immediately leaves high ground by threatening to “severely regulate” or shut down social media platforms. Such threats are not new to this president, who often threatens the media with regulations and legal actions, although one cannot help but see a paradox. Trump usually does not follow through on his destructive threats to hinder speech – but follow through on his promises to cram a trial full of judges who have respect for the First Amendment.

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People expect the judges to impose their latest executive order aimed at removing the protection of the responsibilities of social media companies.

Meanwhile, his opponents “saving democracy” routinely pressured technology companies to censor. Sadness over social media is based on the idea that the average American is too dim to wrestle with the chaos of unrestrained speech. Many leftists – those who want to institutionalize the doctrine of justice or cancel Citizens United – admit this openly when they declare that unregulated speech damages “democracy.”

Trump is the first president to take advantage of direct and instant access to millions of Americans. Whether this is useful for its purpose is debatable. Of course, we are blessed that the president’s policies and rhetoric are often interrupted.

Whatever the case, we have an entire industry ready to challenge the veracity of its statements. We don’t need Twitter to join the fact-checking game. Silicon Valley doesn’t have the resources, knowledge, or people to do it right.

Twitter: @DavidHarsanyi

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Portuguese rider Miguel Oliveira in 16th place after the first free practice in Assen – DNOTICIAS.PT

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Portuguese rider Miguel Oliveira in 16th place after the first free practice in Assen – DNOTICIAS.PT

Portuguese rider Miguel Oliveira (KTM) finished the first two free practices of the MotoGP Grand Prix in Assen in 16th place.

Oliveira finished the day with a time of 1.34.676 minutes, 1.402 seconds behind the best rider of the day, Italy’s Francesco Banagia (Ducati). Spaniard Aleix Espargaro (April) was second with 0.178 seconds and French champion Fabio Quartararo (Yamaha) was third with 0.305 seconds.

After the first session in the rain, in which the rider from Almada was sixth fastest, the rain stopped before the start of the second session.

The riders started with intermediate tires, but as the track in Assen in the Netherlands, considered the “cathedral” of motorsport, dried up, they installed dry tires (slicks).

Under these conditions, Miguel Oliveira was losing ground in the table, ending the day in 16th place, despite an improvement of about nine seconds from the morning’s record, in rain, in which Australian Jack Miller (Ducati) was the fastest. , fifth in the afternoon.

On Saturday there will be two more free practices and qualifications.

The 10 fastest in the set of the first three sessions go directly to the second stage of qualification (Q2), and the remaining 14 “brawl” in Q1, resulting in the two fastest qualifying to the next stage.

Fabio Quartararo enters this 11th round of the season leading the championship with 172 points, while Miguel Oliveira is in 10th place with 64 points.

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Portuguese MNEs defend that Mercosur is a “natural partner” of the European Union at the moment – Observer

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Portuguese MNEs defend that Mercosur is a "natural partner" of the European Union at the moment - Observer

This Thursday, Portugal’s foreign minister said that at a time when the European Union (EU) seeks to diversify suppliers and markets, MERCOSUR is a natural partner whose importance cannot be “underestimated”.

For Portugal, “the current delicate context makes us appreciate even more the mutual advantages of the Agreement between the EU and MERCOSUR,” João Gomes Cravinho said, without directly referring to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

“At a time when the EU is seeking to diversify suppliers and markets in order to ensure greater strategic autonomy, MERCOSUR is a natural partner, whose importance we cannot underestimate“, the minister added at a conference entitled “Brazil and Portugal: perspectives for the future”, which takes place from Thursday to Friday at the Gulbenkian Foundation in Lisbon.

The Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR) is a South American economic bloc created in 1991, whose founding members are Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay.

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But still, within the framework of the European Union, Joao Gomes Cravinho believed that EU strategic partnership with Brazil left ‘untapped’.

The Minister stressed that in the context of the EU, Portugal “always knew how to use its position in favor of strengthening relations with Brazil.”

Therefore, it was during the Portuguese presidency, in 2007, that a “strategic partnership with Brazil” was established, he stressed.

However, according to the head of Portuguese diplomacy, this is “a partnership that has clearly not been used for a variety of reasons and which still retains the ability to position Brazil as Europe’s great interlocutor for South America.”

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With regard to bilateral relations between the two countries, the minister emphasized that “in this context of global turmoil, the wisdom of the central characteristic common to the foreign policy of Brazil and Portugal, which is active participation in many multilateral structures, in recognition of the indispensability of multilateralism, international cooperation and global rules based order.

Portugal meets with Brazil in all areas of Portuguese foreign policy. We are Atlantic, we are Ibero-American and Portuguese-speaking,” he said.

In the Atlantic dimension, “Portugal and Brazil are united by an ocean, which we recognize as growing in importance in the context of new, complex and truly existential issues,” he said.

According to João Gomes Cravinho, “Some of these problems can be answered in the Atlantic Center, co-founded by Portugal and Brazil”, and “the other part of the huge ocean problems will be addressed in detail at the great Summit.” Oceans”, which will be held in Lisbon next week.

“In any of the areas, new prospects are opening up for Portuguese-Brazilian relations,” he stressed.

With regard to Ibero-America, the minister believes that Portugal and Brazil share “an enormous strategic space with the Castilian-speaking countries, where a joint Portuguese-Brazilian reflection is undoubtedly recommended on the potential to exploit opportunities and create synergies”.

“Value of CPLP [Comunidade de Países de Língua Portuguesa] is gaining more and more recognition at the international level – and the evidence of this is the growing number of states that become associate observers” of the organization, he believes.

“Because they want to engage with us and reinforce the value of the linguistic, cultural and historical ties that unify lusophony and create a unique dynamic for relationships with third parties,” he stressed.

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But even at this level, he argued that there was an urgent need to find a “convergence of visions and desires” that “allows us to enhance” our “separate realities.”

The minister also mentioned that “despite the break caused by the pandemic”, Portugal has a “real air bridge” with Brazil, consisting of more than 74 weekly TAP flights, which is a cause and effect of “a dynamic that is being updated and reinvented”. relations between the two countries.

This dynamic, according to Gomes Cravinho, is also reflected in economic and commercial relations.

Thus, “Brazil is the first Latin American export market for Portuguese merchandise and is already the fourth largest merchandise export destination (outside the EU).

“However, the conviction remains that the potential is far from being realized, and that nostalgia for the future entails a vision of a different profile of our exchanges, a technological, creative profile that corresponds to global geo-economic transformations,” he defended. .

At this stage, João Gomes Cravinho also underlined the potential of the port of Sines, “whose strategic importance, which has long been noted, takes on new importance in the troubled times that we are going through.”

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A cycle of Portuguese cinema will be held in New York from Friday.

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A cycle of Portuguese cinema will be held in New York from Friday.

Dand from June 24 to 30, an event called “New Stories from Portuguese Cinema” will present the perspectives of a new generation of filmmakers “whose films embody the artistic, social and political reflections that mark the 21st century,” according to the organization in a statement.

Balad o batrachio by Leonor Teles, Amor, Avenidas Novas by Duarte Coimbra and O Cordeiro de Deus by David Pinheiro Vicente are three of the 20 films that are part of this cinematic cycle.

Pedro Cabeleira, Laura Carreira, Susana Nobre, Joao Rosas, Tomas Paula Marquez, Catarina de Souza and Nick Tyson, Maya Cosa and Sergio da Costa, Christel Alves Meira, Paulo Carneiro, Pedro Peralta, Diogo Salgado, Catarina Vasconcelos and Aya Korezli other directors integrated into this movie cycle.

In addition to FLAD, this event is also the result of a partnership with New York-based Anthology Film Archives, an iconic venue for independent and experimental filmmaking, hosting a Portuguese film cycle featuring Francisco Valente.

“Anthology Film Archives has been a reference space for over 50 years. It seemed to us ideal to promote the works of these directors, emphasizing their uniqueness and quality. We believe that Portuguese cinema can gain more space in the United States and we want to do our part to internationalize it,” said FLAD President Rita Faden.

Francisco Valente, guest programmer, explained that the 18 selected directors are distinguished by “their unwavering commitment to using the screen to express their personal freedom, reflect their racial and gender identity, and develop narratives that comment on and expand our reality.” – in Portugal, in the United States, or in that beautiful and imaginary country called cinema.

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This connection between Portugal and the United States of America is also expressed in the documentary “In the Footsteps of Utopia”, based on the testimonies of “weird” teenagers from Queens, filmed by Catarina de Souza and Nick Tyson, who will come to New York to find out their joint production, which closes this cycle.

The program of the cycle is available in the Screenings section of the Anthology Film Archives “website” (anthologyfilmarchives.org) and on the FLAD “website” (https://www.flad.pt/wp-content). /uploads/2022/02/new_tales_final_bx.pdf).

See also: Michael J. Fox received a humanitarian “Oscar”, and Diane Warren – an honorary “Oscar”.

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