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Taxpayer-Funded Research Investigated How ‘Populist’ Politicians Spread ‘Misinformation’ During COVID-19 Pandemic

The federal government has funded a multinational research project to examine how “populist” politicians are allegedly spreading disinformation and undermining public trust during the coronavirus pandemic.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is conducting a study to examine “how populist politicians have distorted medical communication during the COVID-19 pandemic, fostering polarized attitudes and mistrust among the public.” It paid subsidies to help, which made the public “more vulnerable to general misinformation.” according to In federal spending records. The project, titled “Pandemic Communication in the Age of Populism,” received just over $160,000 in funding from NSF and will focus on how leaders in the United States, Brazil, Serbia, and Poland have tackled the pandemic. It emphasizes the importance of educating public health experts on “populism.” According to one person, “populist” politicians are presentation Created by researchers.

“Each proposal submitted to NSF is reviewed by scientific and engineering experts with expertise in a particular field or area of ​​expertise,” an agency spokesperson told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “This award reflects NSF’s statutory mission and was determined to be worthy of support through an evaluation using the Foundation’s criteria of intellectual merit and broad impact.”

The British and Polish governments, the São Paulo Research Foundation and the Transatlantic Platform are also funding the research project. according to Go to that website.

US and Brazilian populist leaders ‘redefine'[d] The health crisis is a conflict between elites and the people, according to a presentation related to the research project. Researchers say these leaders interfered with experts and “spread misinformation” from the beginning of the pandemic. (Related article: Ted Cruz Grills commits more than $66 million in taxpayer dollars to crackdown on ‘misinformation’)

“In our view, it is important that governments should give experts a major say in how society should respond to public health crises, based on the data we have. “It’s clear,” says the project’s lead researcher Václav Stetka. Said A video reflecting the project’s findings. Previous research papers worked on by Stetka claimed “The banning of Donald Trump from Facebook and Twitter has slowed the spread of election misinformation.”

The researchers included images of former President Donald Trump in their data. Website And in the presentation.

Another pillar of the research project was about “how best to counter these populist narratives,” according to the NSF grant description. According to the presentation, the researchers will urge public health officials to prepare strategies to “counter resistance to preventive measures,” develop approaches to combat online “misinformation,” and “encourage trustworthy experts.” The company recommends working with social media platforms to improve health advice.

A spokesperson for the project told DCNF that researchers plan to release a report with final recommendations near the end of May, which will address how to address mistakes made by experts and the media. He said he would be able to do so.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, wore a mask during a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing examining the federal response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). remove it and make an opening statement. 19) and Emerging Variants, January 11, 2022, Capitol Building, Washington, DC, USA. Greg Nash/Pool via REUTERS

Originally a health specialist was fired There is a belief that the new coronavirus originated in a Chinese laboratory. Department of Energy And that Federal Bureau of Investigation It was discovered in early 2023 that it may have originated from such a facility.

The study found that mask mandates promoted by public health officials unclear Effective in stopping the spread of the virus.Lockdown during the pandemic harmed the economy and serious hindered education A study has revealed the percentage of students excluded from school by authorities.

The project also investigated how populist leaders negatively influenced the media during the pandemic.

“The presence of populist leaders hampers the ability of the press.” [sic] “Addressing Effective Health Crisis Communication” project website read. “Fostering anti-elite sentiment and contributing to divisive media coverage, thereby fostering polarized public attitudes and distrust, and making the public more vulnerable to misinformation spread through social digital networks.” I have to.”

media immediately dismiss They claim that the new coronavirus infection originated in a Chinese laboratory.

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