The propagandist next door



The Russians are not to blame for this country’s fake new problem.

It’s the damn old folks.

“On average, users over 65 shared nearly seven times as many articles from fake news domains as the youngest age group,” researchers from Princeton and New York University reported in a January study published at Science Advances.

One of those who got caught out this week was 68-year-old Howard Weaver – a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, the former Vice President for News for The McClatchy Company, and the former editor of the Anchorage Daily News.

Weaver on Tuesday posted a wholly fake “Fox News Alert” in which President Donald Trump appeared to suggest he would be in office for the next 10 to 20 years and Democrats needed to accept “the fact that I am in charge, this is my country, and I will do as I please.”

One of the first people to comment on the post was an Anchorage reporter young enough to be Weaver’s son who noted the “news alert” was a fake. Weaver’s post had at that time been shared once. Despite the first warning that the post was fake, people went on sharing the post for hours.

Many expressed their disgust with what Trump had said (though he didn’t say it) even after a number of people added to the first warning that the post was fake. Most of the people ignoring those warnings likely posted without reading the other comments, as is too often the case on Facebook.

They reacted to the original post believing what they wanted to believe. Welcome to the world of social media.

It’s easy for many to get caught up in the idea Trump would say anything, as Weaver got caught up in that idea.

By Wednesday the former editor realized he’d made a mistake, admitted to it, and offered a very public mea culpa on his Facebook page.

[Read this column at]


  1. If you ever had any dealings with Howard Weaver when he was at the ADN, it would be understood that this is typical behavior. Mr. Weaver never met a conservative he did not want to trash or a liberal he did not want to canonize. He used the fact that he had more ink to use than just about everyone else to enormous ill effect. The development of electronic media saved all of us from the whip of this proto-fascist of the Left. (Sorry for the name-calling, but Mr. Weaver committed so many bad acts while he was here that he has earned a measure or two of payback.)

  2. Weaver proves himself to be just another prevaricator, masquerading as a legitimate source of “news”. I’m one of those “damn old folks” and I sure as hell don’t promote or legitimatize “fake news”. Pulitzer prize winner or not, “no matter what action or words are presented against it, the truth remains the truth” (quote from me).

  3. Good to see Anchorage property owners are starting to speak out against the socialist/dim agenda. If left unchecked, the dims will do their best to destroy everything good about Anchorage and Alaska. If a sales tax, income tax, higher property taxes and every other kind of tax is implemented, along with stealing the PFD, it will never be enough. For socialists, extra $$ means extra spending/redistributing working families income. There is a never ending array of “programs” to spend other peoples’ money on. Very few, if any, to improve working Alaskans and property owners situation. Put all that together with the “homeless” problem and the dim “remedies” for all, Anchorage and Alaska are looking at hard times ahead.

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