Sunday, November 14, 2021

Mainstream Media Becomes a Leftist Propaganda Machine

The media keeps getting things wrong. But, it keeps getting things wrong only in one direction. It defames and slanders and maligns anyone who belongs to the political right, to any conservative. And it relentlessly hawks absurd conspiracy theories that support leftist propaganda. It did not happen once. It has not happened twice. It happens over and over again.

The American media is now totally corrupted, by woke editors and by Gen Z imbeciles. And, given its moral failings, it never really acknowledges its mistakes. If it were to do so it would need to abandon its crusade to make America more woke, and to do so in callous disregard for the views of the majority of the nation.

So explains Andrew Sullivan in his latest Substack. And he will tell more of it on Sixty Minutes tonight. Some people are unwilling to forgive Sullivan for an absurd pronouncement he made thirteen years ago. One does not quite understand why they are allergic to forgiveness. And yet, Sullivan is an excellent writer and thinker. Someone needs to stand athwart history and call the media to account. If Sullivan can shame them into seeing the light, more power to him.

He opens his Substack essay thusly, by suggesting that Trump was right about the fake news media.

But when the sources of news keep getting things wrong, and all the errors lie in the exact same direction, and they are reluctant to acknowledge error, we have a problem. If you look back at the last few years, the record of errors, small and large, about major stories, is hard to deny. It’s as if the more Donald Trump accused the MSM of being “fake news” the more assiduously they tried to prove him right.

The propaganda attack against Kyle Rittenhouse--he was a white supremacist Trump supporter, and ergo he was a murder-- has been effectively demolished by a trial in Kenosa, Wisconsin.

Sullivan comments on the Rittenhouse fabrications:

But if you watch for any length of time, you realize you’ve been led to believe a media narrative that was way off. (Independent journalists last year, like Jesse Singal, were more clear-eyed.) Because of that narrative whiplash, we may have more rioting and violence if he’s acquitted. The judge is already being targeted. I’m not defending Rittenhouse. And I understand news gathering is fallible. But there’s a media pattern here. And it reaches far wider than Rittenhouse.

And the Russian collusion narrative, used by the media and by Democrats to disable a duly elected American president, has also been unraveling as we speak:

But Trump was right, in the end, about the dodgy dossier; he was right about the duped FBI’s original overreach; and the mass media — Rachel Maddow chief among them — were wrong. And yet the dossier dominated the headlines for three years, and the “corrections” have a fraction of the audience of the errors. Maddow gets promoted. And the man who first published it, Ben Smith, was made the media columnist for the NYT.

And then there have been other narratives the media has been spinning over the past few years.

Think of the other narratives the MSM pushed in recent years that have collapsed. They viciously defamed the Covington boys. They authoritatively told us that bounties had been placed on US soldiers in Afghanistan by Putin — and Trump’s denials only made them more certain. They told us that the lab-leak theory of Covid was a conspiracy theory with no evidence behind it at all. (The NYT actually had the story of the leak theory, by Donald McNeil, killed it, and then fired McNeil, their best Covid reporter, after some schoolgirls complained he wasn’t woke.) Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.

That’s not all folks.

The MSM took the ludicrous story of Jussie Smollett seriously because it fit their nutty “white supremacy” narrative. They told us that a woman was brutally gang-raped at UVA (invented), that the Pulse mass shooting was driven by homophobia (untrue) and that the Atlanta spa shooter was motivated by anti-Asian bias (no known evidence for that at all). For good measure, they followed up with story after story about white supremacists targeting Asian-Americans, in a new wave of “hate,” even as the assaults were disproportionately by African Americans and the mentally ill.

And the media has been hawking a narrative whereby January 6, 2021 saw the worst insurrectionary action since 9/11. And there are others:

As Greenwald noted, the NYT “published an emotionally gut-wrenching but complete fiction that never had any evidence — that Officer Sicknick’s skull was savagely bashed in with a fire extinguisher by a pro-Trump mob until he died.” The media told us that an alleged transgender exposure in the Wi Spa in Los Angeles was an anti-trans hoax (also untrue). They told us that the emails recovered on Hunter Biden’s laptop were Russian disinformation. They did this just before an election and used that claim to stymie the story on social media. But they were not Russian disinformation. They were a valid if minor news story the media consciously kept from its audience for partisan purposes.

Now that the Biden presidency has produced a significant spike in inflation, the media is pretending that there is no inflation.

More recently, the MSM were telling us for months that inflation is a phantasm. We were told that the “2021 Inflation Scare is another in a series of false alarms going back several decades.” We were assured that “the numbers at least for now are on the side of those expecting the trend to subside and then stabilize at lower levels.” Any concern was “fearmongering politics.” And now we wake up to the highest inflation in 30 years, counter-balancing wage increases. Still, they tell us, all will be well.

And then there was the promise that vaccines would end the pandemic. As it happened, the vaccines did not prevent anyone from getting the disease. They worked as a therapeutic. For saying as much Alex Berenson was banned from Twitter forever:

We were told that vaccines would end the Covid pandemic. But they merely altered Covid to a manageable disease that you could still contract while vaccinated. 

And now that the country is being invaded by migrants over the Southern border, the media has assured us that nothing much is happening:

We were told that the migrant surge at the border was just seasonal, and nothing out of the ordinary, even as 1.7 million migrants were illegally trying to get into the country in the last year. We were told that sending migrants back to their home countries was a wicked and unconscionable Trump tactic — even as the Biden administration swiftly copied it with Haitian immigrants — to much success. The cruelty is the point, eh?

Amazingly, there is more. The lies about critical race theory are first among them:

We were — and still are! — being told by most of the media that critical race theory isn’t in high schools at all. Meanwhile, a tsunami of evidence is out there showing that it absolutely is — in every subject, and every class, as the central philosophy behind many states’ education policies.

So, the media has become a propaganda organ of the American left and the Democratic Party. 

We all get things wrong. What makes this more worrying is simply that all these false narratives just happen to favor the interests of the left and the Democratic party. And corrections, when they occur, take up a fraction of the space of the original falsehoods. These are not randos tweeting false rumors. They are the established press.

In conclusion, Sullivan ponders the question of which other narrative is going to be proven to be bullshit. He recommends the currently fashionable notion that the national debt is no big deal. On that point, I agree:

And at some point, you wonder: what narrative are they pushing now that is also bullshit? One comes to mind: the assurance that the insane amount of debt we have incurred this century is absolutely nothing to be concerned about because interest rates are super-low and borrowing more and more now is a no-brainer. But when inflation spikes and sets off a potential spiral in wages to catch up, will interest rates stay so quiescent? And if interest rates go up, how will we service the debt so easily?


whitney said...

Where have you been? This is such an old news. I mean Glenn Reynolds from instapundit who's pretty much a normie conservative has been calling the media Democratic operatives for about 10 years.

Sam L. said...

Exactamente! But it's not "becoming", it's been here for quite some time.

As I keep saying, the media lies to us, and as I also keep saying, the media and the Dems are in cahoots, and sleep in the same beds. I have NO TRUST in the "media" and the Democrat Party.

"So, the media has become a propaganda organ of the American left and the Democratic Party." WHAT???? There's supposed to be a difference of some sort between the Left and the Democrats????? SURELY YOU JEST...

Anonymous said...

Gen Z is too young to be corrupting the media. The oldest are still in college.

Stuart Schneiderman said...

As I am led to believe, GenZ members were born after 1997. By my calculations that makes the oldest of them 25-- as I have discussed in prior posts.

Anonymous said...

What is really funny is that CBS 60 Minutes described Sullivan as a 'conservative'! Twice! Then they told their audience that he was editor of The New Republic. Well, OK then.

Stuart Schneiderman said...

The important point was that a very mainstream media outlet allowed someone to denounce the mainstream media. Sure, lots of us knew this already, but Sixty Minutes gives the case far more credibility.

Sam L. said...

I gave up on "60 Minutes" yearsssssss ago...around 60.

markedup2 said...

I suppose "better late than never" is a thing, but it is in no way impressive - and difficult to distinguish from "stopped clock syndrome". For example, where was Mr. Sullivan WHILE the media was slandering Mr. Trump?