A Brief History
On January 1, 2019, History and Headlines presents some fake news stories you will probably not see or hear in 2019, but then again you never know. On January 1, 2017, we reported about false news stories that really were run in the media during 2016. This year, we make up our own fake news stories for your amusement. Remember, these are not predictions or wishes on our part, even if some of them may seem to be. Of course, no matter how improbable, some of these fake news stories might become real news stories, and if so, then we are the modern version of Jeanne Dixon and Nostradamus.
The Mueller Report is finally released after 2 years of endless investigation, with Hillary Clinton indicted for conspiring with Russia to get Donald Trump elected president! An exhaustive search for Hill-Dog’s missing emails revealed the collusion President Trump has insisted existed only on the Democratic side all along. President Trump rides the wave of “I told you so” to a record approval rating of almost 43%.
In related news, Robert Mueller has been indicted as an agent for Russia and for being a closet Democrat. He denies all charges.
Former Trump Administration members join forces to become a new Marvel League of Superheroes. In a shocking case of life following fiction, all the ex-cabinet members and White House staff members that either quit or were fired joined together to form the most intimidating group of Superheroes the world has ever seen! Led by “Mad Dog” Mattis and with Sean “Sphincter” Spicer as group spokesman, the X-Trumps fight evil wherever they find it, be it in the Fake News Media, the Democrat Party, illegal aliens or supervillain, Dick “Heartless” Cheney. It is unknown at this time if Omarosa will be allowed to join.
Democratic Presidential hopefuls revealed, with Jimmy Carter leading the pack. Is Carter too old? A resounding NO says Bernie Sanders! Learning of Carter’s attempt to resurrect his political career, former President Bill “Slick Willie” Clinton has thrown his hat into the ring, causing a despondent Joe Biden to lament, “When will it be my turn?” Meanwhile, Elizabeth Warren is still reeling from being rejected by both the Cowboy and the Indian wings of the Democratic Party.
In more presidential politics, Beto O’Rourke has lost elections for mayor, town council, and dog catcher, leading to a meteoric rise in the favorability polls among Democratic presidential hopefuls, a commanding lead of 94% to only 4 % for all other potential candidates and leaving only 2% of Democrats undecided.
On July 2, 2019, not one single Trump Administration staffer or cabinet secretary was quoted as calling the President an idiot, a 5 year old, or a dunce for the first time since before the January 2017 inauguration. Of course, with the government having been shut down since before Christmas of 2018 there has been little by way of government comments, anyway.
Due to a crashing stock market and a world wide trade embargo against the United States, allegedly due to the Trump Administration tariffs and international policies, President Trump announced the total elimination of taxes for people with an income of over $1 million per year in an effort to stimulate the economy. When confronted with the allegation that such a move would bankrupt the country, Trump sharply retorted,” It’s never been tried, so how would you know?” In order to make up for the lost revenue, Trump has ordered ICE to start collecting a $1000 fee for every illegal alien entering the United States, thus giving the Treasury more revenue than ever before collected, according to White House sources.
NASA engineers create chaos in the midst of celebrating a successful rocket launch. Building on a tradition of wild revelry to celebrate things going right, a tradition apparently started by cable news giant CNN, NASA engineers and staffers got carried away high-fiving and cheering the successful launch of a rocket carrying supplies to the International Space Station, resulting in uncontrolled rioting and at least 14 deaths and hundreds of arrests. The families of some of the victims are reported to be suing CNN for creating a false expectation of wild revelry.
Finally, American auto giants Ford and General Motors have announced the complete elimination of all models of cars and trucks as the surest way of avoiding further losses. Ford spokesman Phil McCrackin said, “We know it sounds extreme, but seriously, you cannot lose money on cars you do not build. Let the Japanese and Koreans build cars and lose money! Look what happened to Volkswagen.”
Questions for Students (and others): Do you believe any of these fake news stories could become real in 2019? What real news stories do you expect to be reading or hearing in 2019? Who would your favorite superhero be among the ex-Trump Administration superheroes?
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For more information, please see…
Adams, Scott. Win Bigly: Persuasion in a World Where Facts Don’t Matter. Portfolio, 2018.
Cooke, Nicole. Fake News and Alternative Facts: Information Literacy in a Post-Truth Era (ALA Editions Special Report). American Library Association, 2018.
Dice, Mark. The True Story of Fake News: How Mainstream Media Manipulates Millions. The Resistance Manifesto, 2017.
The featured image in this article, reporters with various forms of “fake news” from an 1894 illustration by Frederick Burr Opper from https://www.loc.gov/resource/ppmsca.29087/, has been extracted from another file: The fin de siècle newspaper proprietor.jpg. This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published (or registered with the U.S. Copyright Office) before January 1, 1924.