In their view, citizens have no role but to purchase Lee Enterprises propaganda, consume their disinformation, and mindlessly accept the mind-numbing distortions of logic and reasoning that is used to prop up Wisconsin's economic failures -- all after Scott Walker initiated his "divide and conquer" policies.
Like most dishonest news and editorials, Lee Enterprise's intellectual Sleight-of-hand begins with a small lie and then uses mental contortions to distract and evade the facts and issues that underlie the larger lie they seek to promote. Lee Enterprises' newspapers are masters of the lie of objective journalism, creating false dichotomies and selectively presenting opinions as fact under the guise of being "fair and balanced." As is typical, today Wisconsin State Journal's editorial board misleads and "balances" the truth with lies.
Let's dissect the 12 paragraphs. 335 words, of propaganda that WSJ published today"
- Give them an inch, they will take a yard. WSJ begins with a sentence that proclaims the conclusion that their deception presents as an inescapable fact. The entire editorial is as circle-of-reasoning. WSJ editors know better, yet proclaim that "State leaders did at least one big thing right in creating the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp." without identifying who the state leaders were nor who the corporate interests behind there work are. WSJ's editorial begin, without any collaborating reasoning or evidence, with the claim Scott Walker, republican leadership, and a consortium of privatization hawks did MORE than one thing right creating WEDC.
- "They streamlined the state's focus on job creation." This is the entire second paragraph. WSJ began with an unsupported proclamation that Walker did many great things snd then, without any supporting reasoning or evidence, make this all about "focus" on jobs. In fact, WEDC has not in any meaningful way focused on jobs. WSJ's deception is growing.
- Make a small lie a bigger lie and then use statistics. This tried-and-true propaganda technique rears its ugly head after only 24 words. They proclaim that, even though economic growth was much better BEFORE Walker's WEDC, that the Department of Commerce was "distracted". Proof? They claim that "barely one out of every 10 Commerce workers had focused on business development." What they are hiding is that this group of workers produced MUCH BETTER results than ALL of WEDC -- but the truth doesn't matter to Lee Enterprises and WSJ.
- Look over there! Since WSJ knows that there is very little good coming out of Walker's WEDC, they misdirect that "successes" include "growing exports" and fuzzy claims of "better business services". The former statements misleads because, as Walker's in-state economy contracts, "export" business is the only area for growth -- but even this isn't producing in-state jobs. WSJ's latter statement is meaningless -- editors knows this and does not even attempt to inform readers how "business services" were assessed and what "better" means.
- Bury the first truth. Writers all learn, if they seek to persuade or inform, critical information needs to be placed in the beginning (primacy effect) or at the end (recency effect) of their work. Writers that seek to mislead place "inconvenient" information in the middle -- exactly what WSJ editors have done here. They know the most salient facts can't be ignored, so it is smack in the middle of this misleading editorial -- paragraphs five-through-seven. Paragraph five admits that WEDC has failed to create jobs and grow the economy.
- Bury second the truth. Paragraph six acknowledges that WEDC has lost track of loans, but vastly understates the case. In fact, with Lee Enterprise's complicity, WEDC cannot account for more than 1/3 of the loans it was responsible for in its first year -- a massive failure -- one that WSJ's editors understand but misrepresent.
- Bury the third truth. Perhaps this is the most outrageous lie in today's WSJ's propaganda. Lee Enterprises falsely claim that WEDC has been "warned" by U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development when, in-fact, these grants were pulled and previous awards are being investigated. There may be demands to pay back misappropriated money -- there may even be more serous consequences. Lee Enterprises continues to misinform readers that a serious problem misappropriating federal funds is a "oops!".
- Dodge responsibility -- we're victims, HONEST!! Even though the agency was intentionally created to be under-staffed and that quasi-private economic development agencies have a history of failure, WSJ tells the lie that no one could have imagined what would happen if you remove oversight and accountability from corporate welfare programs.
- False equivalency. Ignoring the fact that leadership in state agencies tends to change as new governors come and WSJ editor's own proclamations in paragaph 3 that the Department of Commerce has a much broader mission than Walker's WEDC, Lee Enterprises wants to mislead that leadership changes at a larger state agency are exactly the same as the high turnover and instability at the much smaller, more-focused quasi-public WEDC.
- More lies. Without citing why and misleading that Wisconsin has no other options, WSJ proclaims WEDC "still has time". Even if this is true, and it isn't, Wisconsin's economic prospects are the second-worse in the nation. WSJ has again assumed its conclusion and presents it without any justification or evidence in a dishonest attempt to justify their conclusion -- typical of their propaganda.
- More lies. Lee Enterprises' editors go back to the "fuzzy focus" meme and deflections from objective outcimes. The most damning thing WSJ can proclaim about the Department of Commerce is that they have more responsibilities than Walker's quasi-public WEDC. Nowhere in Lee Enterprises' misleading editorial does WSJ actually mention the fact that Department of Commerce oversaw much better economic growth than WEDC. WSJ continues to promote a fairy tale.
- Unity and Forward! The last refuse of scoundrels is to shout to the world that "we must unite and move forward". There is ample evidence that WEDC is a massive failure. So what does Lee Enterprises and Wisconsin State Journal want to do about it? CONTINUE FAILED STRATEGIES BECAUSE UNITY AND MOVING FORWARD USURP REASON AND RESULTS!