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The Mercers fund rightwing liar site

This article contains news and liberal commentary.

With Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms cracking down on political disinformation and lies, truth-defying Trump supporters are flocking to Parler, an alternative social media platform for rightwing nutjobs.

They’re attracted by Parler’s “free speech” policy, although that apparently only applies to rightwing extremists, as Wikipedia indicates the site has begun banning users with leftwing viewpoints.

(For Wikipedia’s entry on Parler, including history and general background, go here.)

Then on Saturday, November 14, 2020, Reuters reported that the father-daughter team of Robert and Rebekkah Mercer are among Parler’s financial backers. (Read story here.) This will surprise no one who knows anything about the Mercers, who are hedge fund billionaires and about as reactionary as they come, and have long been funders of rightwing causes.

According to Wikipedia (read article here), Robert Mercer criticized the 1964 Civil Rights Act as a “mistake,” the Mercers were major funders of the rightwing website Breitbart, have been associated with the notorious rightwing Koch brothers, and were instrumental in getting jobs in Trump’s White House for Steve Bannon and Kellyanne Conway.

With the better-known platforms now balking very slightly at being conduits for mass dissemination of falsehoods and conspiracy theories, Parler — which has been growing exponentially in recent weeks and now has more than 4 million active users — is rapidly becoming the vehicle of choice among Trumpies for sharing their fantasies about the 2020 election.

“Election officials of both parties have said there is no evidence of major irregularities” and noted Trump’s legal efforts to overturn the election have been “without success,” Reuters said in another story published on Nov. 14, 2020 (read it here), echoing what all the other media with any journalistic standards have been reporting. As I’ve stated in other articles on this blog, minor errors and malfunctions are a normal feature of elections that involve processing hundreds of thousands or millions of ballots, but usually are corrected.

A typical statewide election with 2 or 3 million votes will be off by a few hundred in the initial count, which can affect very close elections (that’s what recounts are for), but the odds of recounts overcoming Biden’s leads in multiple states are effectively zero. Numerous studies have repeatedly shown that fraud is virtually nonexistent in U.S. elections; the Washington Post identified a total of 3 fraudulent votes cast in the 2016 presidential election in the entire nation, all of which were cast for Trump (read that story here).

And on Friday, November 13, 2020, Fox host Tucker Carlson retracted his claim — which had been picked up and flaunted by Trump himself — that a vote was cast this month in the name of a World War 2 veteran who died in 2006 (read that story here). That vote was cast by his widow, who is very much alive, in her own name. (This incident is typical of how false beliefs about election fraud get started and acquire a life of their own, which isn’t helped by having a candidate — Trump — who freely takes extreme liberties with truth. You can read more stories of live “dead voters” here.)

It doesn’t matter what Trump supporters believe, or how much the Mercers spend on disseminating political lies. Joe Biden is going to be inaugurated anyway.

Photo: Billionaire Robert Mercer and his daughter Rebekkah

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