See the original posting on Boing Boing
We may be living in a “post-truth culture where feelings trump facts (and Trump ignores facts) but the tabloids have been living there for years, and this weeks tabloid flights of fantasy are no different.
Drugs tearing Keith & Nicole Apart, claims the National Enquirer in an exposé about Nicole Kidman and husband Keith Urban – except the story is about an alleged former drug dealers fears that Urban is teetering on the brink of a devastating relapse. In other words Kieth is still straight and sober as far as the Enquirer knows, and a dubious source who admits not seeing Urban for 15 years is worried. Post-truthism at its finest.
As is the Enquirer exclusive proclaiming: Prince Harry Cross-Dressing Disaster! Has Britains most politically incorrect Royal taken to fishnets and stilettos? No such luck. Though the Enquirer claims that Harry is caught in a shocking cross-dressing scandal, actually its his girlfriend, American actress Meghan Markle, whose brother” is revealed in photos wearing a dress and fake breasts. Actually its Markles mustachioed half-brother, and the photo clearly shows hes wearing the dress for a lark, not as some lifestyle statement. Theres no scandal, and no way that Prince Harry is somehow entangled in it.
Drugs Driving Kanye Insane! screams another Enquirer headline, claiming that the singer’s hospitalization for exhaustion was sparked when sky-high on booze and a cocktail of drugs. Based on what? A source claims: Hes got big problems! True, but that doesnt necessarily make his breakdown drug-related. Where are the facts?
Post-truthism has been prevalent in recent political coverage, and this weeks tabloids continue that laissez-faire approach. Hillary, Bill & Chelsea Indicted! screams the front page of the Globe. What? Did you miss that story in the New York Times or Washington Post? Thats because the Clintons havent been indicted. Period. Clinton Clans Going to Prison! reads the headline above the story claiming the former First Family face federal fraud and bribery charges for allegedly using Clinton Foundation funds to finance their own lavish lifestyles. There are certainly serious questions for the Clintons to answer, but predicting the future because of an editorial political stance should hardly be a reporters guiding star.
Muslim Spies in Obamas CIA! proclaims the Enquirer cover, alleging that 55 double agents have been found within the spy agency. Setting aside for a moment the accuracy of this claim, the Enquirer seems to have forgotten that these alleged traitors have been uncovered on President Obamas watch, and that our current president may be happy knowing that he can feed these spies misinformation and keep them isolated. Instead, the Enquirer seems to think that this is president-elect Donald Trumps triumph, and reports: Hes ready to crush them! CIA officials allegedly gave Trump a report code-named Deep Cleanse designed to flush out double-agents, and a source explains: Theyve been working on it for months. In other words, Obamas administration has been working on it for months. But the Trump-loving Enquirer could never praise Obama, so their headline proclaims: Trumps Islamic Spy Attack Plan Is A Go! Its revisionist history before it even happens – quite a neat trick.
Convicted killer and legendary wall of sound record producer Phil Spector has only six weeks to live claims the Enquirer. Let the countdown begin! Meanwhile, the last time I looked Nick Nolte was still alive, even though the Enquirer gave him four weeks to live way back in July. Whats taking him so long?
Among other fact-challenged reports, the Enquirer claims that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolies adopted sons Maddox and Pax may have to be returned to their biological parents after the celebrity couples split, Barack and Michelle Obama are divorcing, and Melissa McCarthys marriage is on the rocks because her husband Ben was seen talking with Jennifer Aniston, while the Globe claims that Caitlyn Jenner is drowning in a sea of booze. Intriguing stories, lacking any evidence, but doubtless written because they just feel right, and thats whats important in modern journalism.
Fortunately we have the crack investigative team at Us magazine to tell us that Busy Philipps wore it best, Katheryn Winnick (Who she, Ed?) carries mascara, fluffy socks and a Costco card in her Cambridge Satchel Company tote, that Elizabeth Hurley used to want to be a nun, and that the stars are just like us: they shop, play soccer, eat nachos and snap selfies. Revelatory, as usual.
Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are under pressure, claims Us mags cover, stating the obvious, while People magazine brings us Kennedy Secrets and What Jackie Really Knew, revealing nothing that we didnt know before.
As ever, the National Examiner brings us word that alien life is trying to contact Earth, under the headline: Scientists See the Light, And Its Coming From E.T.! It goes on to explain that mysterious signals from the stars may prove aliens are trying to contact us! Indeed, light pulses have been detected in the distant universe, which the Examiner reports looks like signals from extraterrestrial intelligence. Or perhaps theyre not signaling Earth at all? Maybe its just a galactic-scale disco strobe light, or the finale of a Hotblack Desiato-fronted Disaster Area concert?
Onwards and downwards . . .