For the global business community, the top concern for the next two years is not conflict or climate, it is disinformation and misinformation, Ursula von der Leyen said.
The President of the European Commission said this while giving a “special address” on the second day of the World Economic Forum’s (”WEF’s”) annual meeting being held in Davos this week. The theme of the meeting this year is “rebuilding trust,” which is wishful thinking.
“These risks, [disinformation and misinformation], are serious,” von der Leyen said, “because they limit our ability to tackle the big global challenges we are facing. Changes in our climate and our geopolitical climate shifts in our demography and in our technology.”
You can watch von der Leyen’s “special address” on WEF’s website HERE and you can read a transcript published by WEF HERE, although it’s probably not advisable to trust that WEF has transcribed it accurately, completely and/or truthfully.
WEF’s table of top risks for the next two years compared to the longer term of 10 years shows WEF believes they will be able to successfully tackle what they call “misinformation” in the next few years with “misinformation and disinformation” dropping from top spot to sixth. We can assume that means, at the very least, even more censorship from now on.
It must be remembered that what WEF calls “misinformation and disinformation” translates into “information that does not agree with their approved narrative.”
Von der Leyen provided a solution for the risks WEF is concerned about: “This is a time to drive global collaboration more than ever before … I believe it can be done, and I believe that Europe can and must take the lead in shaping that global response. The starting point for that is to look deeper at [WEF’s] Global Risk Report to map out a way forward.”
In what follows, text contained within quotation marks are excerpts from von der Leyen’s speech. It begins with von der Leyen describing WEF’s much-touted public-private partnership model. The merging of public and private interests, where the state becomes business and business becomes the state.
“While governments hold many of the levers to deal with the great challenges of our time, business have the innovation, the technology, the talents to deliver the solutions we need to fight threats like climate change or industrial-scale disinformation. Europe is uniquely placed to show how this can work …”
“And this is more important than ever as we start 2024, the biggest electoral year in history. Democracies across the world will head to the polls and half of the global population will be affected. This includes over 450 million people in the European Union, a union of 27 democracies …”
“Of course, like in all democracies, our freedom comes with risks. There will always be those who try to exploit our openness, both from inside and out. There will always be attempts to put us off track. For example, with disinformation and misinformation.”
Von der Leyen then proceeded to provide details about Russia in the context of Ukraine as an example of disinformation and misinformation which she spoke of as fact. However, according to RT, von der Leyen’s “facts” featured outright economic falsehoods as well as fresh reports from the Ukrainian frontline – circa 2022.