Beware: Fake News Is Propaganda and Must Be Vetted Before Sharing

It was Founding Father John Adams who said this about our government:

Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.

"This system of freedom is not designed for the people we are becoming," Glenn said Tuesday on radio. "You can't have a free people if free people won't do their work."

Part of that work includes vetting news sources in a post-factual society. It requires personal responsibility.

RELATED: Pizzagate: Fake News Conspiracy Theory That Led Gunman to DC’s Comet Ping Pong, Explained

For example, if a reader encounters a news story about Hillary Clinton running a child prostitution ring in a tunnel system underneath a pizza parlor in Washington, DC, said reader might want to further investigate the source before showing up at the establishment with a weapon.

"It requires you to engage your brain. And it also requires you to have something we used to call common sense," Glenn said.

Listen to this segment, beginning at mark 2:12, from The Glenn Beck Program:

Below is a rush transcript of this segment, it might contain errors:

GLENN: All right. I want to talk a little bit about Pizzagate. And beyond Pizzagate, the trend of fake news. I keep -- we keep saying this for the past couple of days. I keep coming back to -- and, Pat, you would know this. Isn't it John Adams who said, "This system is wholly inadequate for an irreligious and uneducated people?"

PAT: And immoral.

GLENN: And immoral people.

PAT: Uh-huh.

GLENN: This system of freedom is not designed for the people we are becoming. You can't have freedom -- look at the solutions on fake news.

We should have some sort of vetting system with Facebook.

Or, you could do the work and engage your head and say, "Hmm, A, does this make sense? B, how come it's only on yournewsatthehour.com.ca.tv? Why am I only getting it from this one source? And let's look at the source.

Do we know anything about the source? People don't -- people read the headline. They're lucky if they read the first paragraph before they share it.

PAT: Uh-huh.

STU: And some of the studies have found, you know, 80 percent of people or more don't read the stories they share on Facebook. They see the headline. They share it.

GLENN: Right. They read the headline. And that's --

STU: And how many headlines -- how many times have we read stories where you click on the headline, and you're like, "Oh, my gosh."

And then you read the story, and you're like, "Well, that's not it?"

PAT: Well, how many times have you posted something on Facebook, and you get some angry responder -- and they address -- they're yelling at you about the things you address in the context of the post.

GLENN: Right.

PAT: Well, I -- that's what I addressed. That's what this is -- you should read the post. They never do. They never do.

GLENN: They don't even read the post.

STU: They don't even read it.

GLENN: So you can't have a free people if free people won't do their work.

PAT: Yeah, there's got to be some personal responsibility.

GLENN: Personal responsibility. It requires you to engage your brain. And it also requires you to have something we used to call common sense.

PAT: Uh-huh.

GLENN: I mean, common sense tells you -- what is the Pizzagate story? The Pizzagate story was that Hillary Clinton was running a prostitution ring of underage prostitutes in a tunnel system underneath a pizza parlor in Washington, DC.

STU: In the middle of the campaign. She was like, "Yeah, I'm going to run for president. But also the child prostitution thing."

PAT: Well, they did talk about pizza a lot in the emails. So obviously that was code.

GLENN: So you have to believe that, A -- I mean, how bad -- this is -- this is, again, the problem of the press and the problem with people like us is demonizing people. Once you demonize -- there was nothing -- there was nothing anyone could say to the left about Donald Trump that they would ever believe, in a good way. And there's nothing that anyone on the right could possibly say to convince you that Hillary Clinton was not the most evil person in the world.

So the first hurdle is already done because of conditioning. We just make you into a person who is the worst person in the world. And I won't listen to anything else because everything I have seen on my side of the media, on my side of the feed, tell me that that's a bad person. And if anyone on my side starts to say, "Well, wait a minute, guys, they've been gotten to, they're afraid for their life, somebody has their family, or they've been paid off to say those things."

PAT: Sold out.

GLENN: There's no way to cross those lines.

PAT: Uh-huh.

GLENN: So we're already bifurcate the country. We already Balkanize. And so now the possible truth about the other side can't jump over that chasm.

So the first thing you had to believe is that Hillary Clinton would be so evil that she should be -- well, she would also be competent enough to run a prostitution ring of underage kids. There's step one. Step two is, there's a tunnel system underneath Washington, DC, for pizza parlors. Not for the government, but for pizza parlors. Three, she's running this during the campaign. Four, when somebody calls to order pizza, that's when they're ordering a child for sex.

STU: Do you want --

GLENN: Is there more?

STU: Do you want the full list of terms? I have the full list. Buzzfeed came up with the full list of terms that I thought was pretty interesting.

GLENN: Buzzfeed was debunking this.

STU: Yes. There's a whole -- it's a really interesting story about how something like this spreads. Which, you know, interestingly with this one spread from literally nothing. It was just someone randomly tweeting that this was going on. Started with a person saying that October 30th, right before the election, right? People are right at the height of their sensitivities of the other side.

White supremacy Twitter account that presents itself as belonging to a Jewish lawyer in New York tweeted that the NYPD was looking into evidence --

GLENN: Why does it always have to be a Jewish lawyer? We have a guest on today --

STU: It's not. I mean --

GLENN: I know. I know. We have a guest on today: Jon Ronson. He's this fascinating guy, who's talked to people whose lives have been destroyed by the internet. And he said, I was talking to a member of the Aryan Nation. And they were talking about the Bilderberg Group.

And he said, "You know, I don't know how they can be a Jewish conspiracy because most of the people that go there are not Jewish." And he said -- this is the quote from the Aryan Nation guy.

Yes, they're not necessarily a Jew, but they are Jewish.

JEFFY: Yeah.

STU: Oh. Oh.

GLENN: Oh. Okay. Good. All right.

STU: So the -- the initial tweet from the white supremacy account said that Anthony Weiner's laptop contained evidence of Clinton involvement in an international child enslavement ring. Okay?

GLENN: They're so into that.

STU: Well, there you go. It's totally --

GLENN: They're not helping down in Haiti. They're abducting children for the pizza parlor.

PAT: Right. So then it spread to a message board. That message board was then posted by a guy who worked with a British conspiracy theorist and posted a site on yournewswire.com, which I know is --

PAT: Well, if it's My News Wire, then it's obviously news.

STU: It says it's news in the site.

GLENN: It says it's news in the site. Like ABC -- ABCNews.ca.tv.

STU: Yeah, there's some.

GLENN: Yeah, dot-tv or dot.co -- or, AU. That's what it was.

STU: The next story on Your News Wire, took a step by claiming an FBI insider had confirmed the claims.

Now, again, we don't have anything yet. So this is where we are right now. One random account on Twitter. And a woman in Missouri claimed that an NYPD source was telling them the Clintons were about to be brought down by a massive child trafficking sex scandal. One anonymous person on a 4chan thread who claimed to work for law enforcement and said something similar a few months ago, before news of the FBI, looking into emails on Anthony Weiner's laptop broke, and a conspiracy theorist who pulled these things together into a post and then used them to claim that evidence had emerged from the Clinton email investigation that a massive child trafficking and pedophile sex ring operates in Washington.

Your News Wire story from October 31st was then noticed by right-wing and fringe blogs. They began to aggregate it and spread it, as you would expect.

One site plagiarized the text from the original post. These guys have no ethics in their fake news. Plagiarism.

GLENN: Oh, my gosh.

STU: I mean, if you can't get fake news people to write their own stories, what have we become as a nation?

GLENN: Holy cow.

STU: 85,000 shares for that one. Now, Glenn, you post things on Facebook. You're active on Facebook. 85,000 is a big number.

GLENN: That's a lot.

PAT: That's a lot. That's a lot of shares.

STU: Because shares isn't just like, "Eh, I just happened to read it." Shares is someone taking the story so seriously that they're actually pushing it out. Now, whether they read it or not, who knows?

But they're pushing it out to spread it even further. And Facebook detects a story that is being shared widely and winds up it in even more feeds. Because that's -- it's a smart system. It's a -- I mean, Facebook -- by the way, these people are smart.

While many sites repeated the details from the original post, others introduced new baseless claims.

Subjectpolitics.com -- you guys big on subjectpolitics.com? They wrote a story with, "It's over. NYPD just raided Hillary's property. What they found there will, capital letters, ruin her life."

Well, of course, they did not actually raid the property. And the associated photograph was just a stock photo of the FBI doing something. Not at her house. Nothing to do with Hillary Clinton. Just the picture of the FBI carrying evidence in some unrelated case.

That one had 107,000 shares. And on and on and on and on.

True Pundit published a story the same day setting its own anonymous NYPD and FBI sources, listing new allegations. Ending the Fed posted a story and managed to generate significant engagement on Facebook.

They were known for promoting and making it to the Facebook trending. Remember the Facebook trending topics when they said Megyn Kelly was being fired. That story came from them, apparently. It goes on and on and on.

Now, three days later -- and David Goldberg, who apparently started this whole thing, then tweets the story from True Pundit saying, "My source was right." Well, True Pundit's source was essentially David Goldberg who tweeted it initially, three days earlier.

And this is how this happens. Hundreds of thousands of -- of shares.

GLENN: Can I just say something? Remember the story about George Washington saying that he was a big philanderer? It was a big that was -- this is all something that has been done to us before. There was a book that was the first one to take down George Washington. It was published in I think 1943. Look at the footnotes. I'll -- we'll post it someplace else, where we can show you the name of the book and the following book.

And what it was, was a historian, a progressive historian that had the agenda of taking down George Washington. So he publishes this book. There's no -- there's no footnotes in this book. It's just stories about how bad of a guy he was. Another professor, he sees this book, and he's outraged by it. And he writes a book, all footnoted, and says, "None of this is true." For the first book sold an awful lot of copies. Then the book came out that said that wasn't true, that was all footnoted. Then a third book comes out and says, "This book is true," and uses footnotes referencing the first book. Okay?

(laughter)

GLENN: And that has gone on. And you can actually watch the tree of lies that has come from that one book. And they are all -- so the next book that is defending the first book, its footnotes go to the third book.

PAT: That's exactly what progressives have done with the Constitution. Using case law, instead of the Constitution.

GLENN: Correct. You don't even make it progressives. You just make it liars.

PAT: Yeah.

GLENN: They start referencing each other as proof that that's --

PAT: Right. Well, we had another crappy decision that backs up this crappy decision. Yeah, but none of it is based in the Constitution.

GLENN: Correct. Right.

STU: If only there was a book that explained the tie between progressives and liars.

JEFFY: Right.

PAT: Oh, man.

STU: If there was a book --

GLENN: What would you call a book like that?

STU: Maybe you would call it one of the two words. Progressive -- maybe Liars, I guess.

PAT: Who would write such a book though? I mean -- what a coincidence.

GLENN: That would be a number one times best-seller.

STU: Would it have footnotes in it though?

GLENN: Yeah, it would. And it would make a great Christmas gift.

JEFFY: It would be available?

GLENN: It would be available at bookstores and online everywhere, really. You can download it right now.

STU: Wow. It sounds like fake news to me.

GLENN: It does to me too. It's called Liars. It's available in bookstores everywhere.

[break]

GLENN: What's amazing about this pizza story is you also have to believe that no one else called to order pizza and then had like an underage kid show up at their house. And you're like, "No, I really wanted Canadian bacon and pineapple. I don't -- why are these Alusian (phonetic) kids all of a sudden in my house?"

STU: As conspiracy theories spread, it went to this pizza restaurant called Comic Ping-pong, which was I guess a place where people at DC really liked. And I think the owner is a Democratic donor and things like that. So he got tied into this somehow.

And they've been getting harassing calls. They got this guy who came up from North Carolina with a gun. And went in to investigate what he believed was a real child prostitution sting. And then left after he realized there were no tunnels --

PAT: Somehow he couldn't find the tunnels. They hid the tunnels so well, he could not find them.

STU: But this is -- it wound up growing into one guy on Twitter, yet again, saying, "I'm dreaming about -- this is from the Podesta emails. "I'm dreaming about your hotdog stand in Hawaii." This is code for something. Sex trafficking? So that piece of evidence, quote, unquote --

GLENN: The evidence is Podesta just saying, "I'm dreaming about your hotdog stand in Hawaii." That's the evidence that they're --

STU: Right. Because that's code.

GLENN: -- underage trafficking at a pizza parlor.

STU: So from that, they built a list of terms that you can find in the Podesta emails.

Hotdog equals boy. Pizza equals girl. Cheese equals little girl. Pasta equals little boy. Ice cream equals male prostitute. Walnut equals a person of color. And sauce equals orgy.

(chuckling)

STU: Now you have the real choice behind the story. Sauce equals orgy.

GLENN: Now, how do you stand against this? We'll address that, next.

Featured Image: Facebook logos are pictured on the screens of a smartphone (R), and a laptop computer, in central London on November 21, 2016. Facebook on Monday became the latest US tech giant to announce new investment in Britain with hundreds of extra jobs but hinted its success depended on skilled migration after Britain leaves the European Union. The premier social network underlined London's status as a global technology hub at a British company bosses' summit where Prime Minister Theresa May sought to allay business concerns about Brexit. (Photo Credit: JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images)

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