Truth Wars quotations – fake news, democracy, and Trump

Truth Wars Paul Gibbons

Writing Truth Wars is hard! Not only is the subject vast, touching on journalism, Facebook, critical thinking, science, politics, corporate fraud and much more – the landscape on which the book reports changes daily (hourly?)  Furthermore, without a publisher and chunky advance, the very annoying job of earning a crust interferes with scholarship, research, and writing. (How the great journalists from The Atlantic, The Economist, or the Guardian also write books astounds me!)


But I’ve put together some quotes from just one of the chapters – they will give you a sense of what is to come. If you are anxiously awaiting the book’s arrival, this may sate your appetite for a while.  Thanks!

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When Trump supporters say they “believe” Trump, sometimes that is a profession of loyalty more than an epistemic claim – as in when the Catholic faithful proclaims “body of Christ” during communion. (Truth Wars book,

We don’t often go around telling pilots how to land a plane. However, people who have taken a 9th grade earth sciences class somehow feel free to tell climate scientists they are wrong. (Truth Wars book,

The internet was supposed to make us more knowledgeable and more connected. Instead it has made us stupider and more polarized.  Changing that depends on changing ourselves.  (Truth Wars book,

Expertise solely inside the heads of experts is useless. Expertise that makes a difference must affect public beliefs and actions. (Truth Wars book,

See the book description here 

The time for “if it bleeds, it leads” is past.  We need more news that informs, not just inflames. (And a public that demands less titillation from the 24-hour news cycle.) (Truth Wars book,

The problem with fake news is this.  Without shared facts, democracy degenerates into Plato’s ochlocracy – mob rule – and complex societies become ungovernable. (Truth Wars book,

If a corporation had a branding problem as big as the US government has, it would soon be out of business.  Our public institutions are neophytes when it comes to public engagement, transparency, and earning public trust.  Corporations take it seriously and are masterful at it. (Truth Wars book,

Journalists, in today’s political climate, are the real war heroes. In the face of constant shelling from powerful interests, they retain their composure and professionalism. (Truth Wars book,

We need more humility when it comes to our own cherished opinions, and more openness when it comes to listening to the opinions of the reviled “them.” (Truth Wars book,

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