Prominent political voices are increasingly saying President Donald Trump has gone too far in his assault on the media’s credibility, likening his repeated criticisms to those of dictators. RELATED: Campaigner-in-chief: Trump rallies supporters The debate over the wisdom of Trump’s comments took place on the Sunday morning news shows, with Republican Senator John McCain and others… Continue Reading →
This constellation of media players could have at any moment pumped the brakes on Trump and Trumpism during the 2016 election, and could do so now. At any moment, Rupert or the sons could have told Roger Ailes, “OK…that’s enough.” The as-yet unchronicled conspiracy – and I use that word deliberately – between the c-suite at Fox News, Matt Drudge, Trumpbart, Rush Limbaugh is a story waiting to be told. They and others actively elected to elide Trump’s endless catalog of ideological sins, moral shortcomings, mob ties, Russian moneymen, personal weirdnesses, trophy wives, serial bankruptcies, persistent tax shenanigans, low-grade intellect, thinly-veiled racial animus, and conspiracy email-forwarding kooky grandpa affect.
The “populist movement” explanation for 2016 isn’t entirely wrong, but it took the full throttle efforts of the high-volume media enablers to promote Trump as the singular remedy for the moral, economic, and political collapse they decried each day for their credulous viewers and listeners to make that “movement” happen. Even after 25 years in this movement, I can’t help but feel a sense of wonder at how brazen their marketing and monetization of Trump has been, and at its spectacular cost to conservatism.
You gotta admit, Saturday Night Live should just send Sean Spicer a check. I would say this clip will be lampooned, but really, they can pull a Tina Fey The question of the day went to this guy on Skype, asking for his blog readers about rolling back “regulation.” On what exactly? Clean water? Making sure… Continue Reading →
So the White House makes a ridiculous claim: “The Media doesn’t cover terror attacks.” The media scrambles to prove that they DO cover terror attacks including pulling footage…of them covering terror attacks. And the public sees more coverage of, and this is important, the terror attacks that the White House has listed (all Islamic terror, no… Continue Reading →
Bill Maher’s panel destroyed conservative commentator Tomi Lahren on HBO’s Real Time on Friday, taking the once liberal, now right-wing bobble head to task. Maher started by asking the panel what would happen if Trump was black? With his behavioral problems, would it make a difference? “If a black guy ran for president and acted just… Continue Reading →
I read this Charlie Sykes column in the Times, and I related. Boy, did I relate. Because as we saw played out in the primary, knee-jerk skepticism about known facts (and how to interpret them) is not the exclusive hallmark of the right wing:
For years, as a conservative radio talk show host, I played a role in that conditioning by hammering the mainstream media for its bias and double standards. But the price turned out to be far higher than I imagined. The cumulative effect of the attacks was to delegitimize those outlets and essentially destroy much of the right’s immunity to false information. We thought we were creating a savvier, more skeptical audience. Instead, we opened the door for President Trump, who found an audience that could be easily misled.
The news media’s spectacular failure to get the election right has made it only easier for many conservatives to ignore anything that happens outside the right’s bubble and for the Trump White House to fabricate facts with little fear of alienating its base.
Unfortunately, that also means that the more the fact-based media tries to debunk the president’s falsehoods, the further it will entrench the battle lines.
My blogger friends and I have talked about this for a couple of years (the women, at least). We did very well at teaching readers to be skeptical about the media, but not so great at teaching them to be discerning consumers — i.e. learning when you can trust the media.
Being skeptical is easy; being discerning is hard. I know; I am constantly looking up sources and connected institutions to try to figure out where something came from. It takes a lot of time.
I just don’t need to have an opinion about everything right away. I make a mental note, and I come back to it.
Media critic Sarah Kendzior had no problems at all telling the press they should see this as a war when Trump calls you the enemy. And of course, outdated and perverse practices like the White House Correspondents Dinner should be avoided. Normally, any reference to the Nazis is not all the helpful, but Kendzior’s reference to… Continue Reading →
Our Shadow-President Stephen Bannon would like to let “the media” know that he wishes they’d just shut the fck up and go sit in a corner somewhere for the next four years. In an interview with the New York Times, Bannon said, “The media should be embarrassed and humiliated and keep its mouth shut and just… Continue Reading →
To kick off this week’s show, I lay out an entirely plausible scenario in which Trump — and unified GOP control of government — results in only manageable damage to the republic. It’s not a prediction, which would be pollyannish, but it could work out this way if decent people stand up against what’s coming. Then… Continue Reading →