October 17, 2015

If progressives win, get ready for lots of manufactured news

Denyse O'LearyRebel Blogger

Last time out, we looked at why the legacy mainstream media (MSM) acts like the Liberal Party’s PR firm.

It is not simply because they are progressive, or not mainly so. It’s more that they are superfluous.

Progressivism, as such, wouldn’t in principle stop a journo from latching onto a great story that sank the career of some replaceable leftist politician.

Also, the growing numbers of people who aren't paying much attention to MSM are often pretty progressive themselves. But they can go all over the world 24/7 for news, just like you and I can. And they do.

So the media acting as the Liberals’ PR firm is not a plot against conservatives; it is a desperate bid for survival.

Consider: Trust in legacy mainstream media is at an all time low in the United States, for example, says commentator Brent Bozell:

The latest Gallup Poll finds that only 7 percent of Americans declare they have a "great deal" of trust in the media. At this rate, soon it will be just the media and their immediate families who check that box.

Now, several things follow: 1) Under threat of extinction, the MSM are slowly morphing into the Pravda and Izvestia of progressive governments. They suppress news harmful to such governments' causes (which are also their own) and advance news that is essentially "oppo" research on "enemies" (non-progressives, whatever type).

Progressive governments will find ways of keeping the MSM alive, perhaps turning them into CBCs, essentially. Most MSM will accept that. Pay, and be glad the government does not also force you to listen—or prevent you from listening to anyone else.

The next stage, already well under way, is the establishment of fake news as a staple. I noted earlier the spike in plagiarism and fabulism in recent years, and the fact that it is gradually becoming more acceptable.

As Mark Steyn observes:

Thirty years ago, it would be difficult to imagine a liar or fantasist surviving in a job that supposedly depends on one's trustworthiness. Yet today Brian Williams' survival is the way to bet - because the obsolete format of Big Three "network news" is a dinner-theatre exercise that now bears so little relation to real news that Williams' ability to project the aura of authority and integrity trumps the reality that he doesn't actually have any. If you get your news from old-school "network news", you're not actually getting any news, you're watching a guy 'cause he has great hair.

Here are some of the many instances in recent years of wholesale suppression or misrepresentation of the basic facts of news stories, or else of a massive level of ignorance and carelessness that would have been unthinkable fifty years ago, when people actually needed the legacy media.

(My examples are taken from the United States because I mostly do business there. Readers, please share examples from the true north, as led.)

February 26, 2012, Trayvon Martin shooting: Defendant George Zimmerman was described as "a white Hispanic" by the New York Times, probably to play up the race angle in the Trayvon Martin shooting, despite the consequences. The term had seldom been heard before. MSM defended the cultural neologism, of course. No one seems, for some time, to have been able to get an authentic near-adult photo of shooting victim Martin, which would have provided context for the fatal encounter. Odd, when one thinks of the budgets some people have.

December 14 2012, Sandy Hook shooting: MSM misidentified Ernst and Young accountant Ryan Lanza for his brother, Adam Lanza, who shot six adults and twenty children before fatally shooting himself. Ryan Lanza was stuck defending himself against the media charge of mass murder A friend of mine, attempting to defend the incompetence, pointed out at the time that the Internet happens so fast these days, it is hard to keep up.

Well, yes, that’s true. But if all we need is someone to get it wrong, there is no reason to bother with MSM; local live bloggers might have made a mess of the facts—or, alternatively, even accurately identified the perpetrator by personal recognition.

August 9, 2014: In Ferguson, Missouri, a white police officer shot a young African-American man during a struggle for the officer’s gun. MSM accepted without question a version of the events according to which Brown had surrendered and was shot in the back. Autopsy, forensics, and examination of testimony established that witnesses’s claims were not credible:

An Associated Press review of thousands of pages of grand jury documents reveals numerous examples of statements made during the shooting investigation that were inconsistent, fabricated or provably wrong. For one, the autopsies ultimately showed Brown was not struck by any bullets in his back.

It’s hard to know how much of the subsequent rioting when the officer was acquitted stemmed from local residents' acceptance of too-credulous MSM accounts. Again, for people who have a budget...

Because of the readiness with which MSM will jump on anything that smells of racial conflict (perhaps it is easy to cover?), they are often targets of hoax hate crimes. So, it seems, are their readers.

On the whole, if one wants to reduce inequity against visible minorities and violence in society, one of the most useful strategies would be: Those of us who have nothing to gain from promoting conflict should stop paying attention to MSM. Let’s get to know our neighbours and fellow citizens without them.

A few less grim snippets from the vast reams of manufactured news fly past:

* Embattled Washington Post fact checker admits the paper's vaunted "Pinocchio ratings" (for untruthful claims) "are subjective":

Kessler’s lengthy rationalization is essentially a confession that finally proves what many of us have been saying for years: that Kessler and the Post have been abusing the imprimatur of fact-checking as a partisan weapon to push a left-leaning agenda.

Did we really expect anything else?

* New Republic reviewer of movie American Sniper opines on it based on the trailer; hasn’t seen film.

Plagiarism is not the big issue it once was, and celeb plagiarists tend to land on their feet.

I could go on, why bother? To revisit the famous phrase, MSM news is increasingly fake but accurate, provided we believe as the MSM crowd does. Otherwise, it’s just fake.

The next decade will see many more, probably riper examples, if the dying MSM get a reprieve, in return for being of use to progressive government.

Progressives in media aren’t actually “liars,” or “hypocrites,” as many traditionalists and conservatives claim. Such an accusation implies an understanding that facts and evidence are real in a way that PC chatter and narrative are not. The progressive doesn't agree.

He honestly views reality as constructed, not confronted. He gives himself permission to move in and out and around as he wishes, and to force others to accommodate his moves. And woe betide us if we don’t. Whatever he feels right now IS reality, and much more than reality once he has the power to enforce his vision.

But, let's face it, many people like the legacy media’s fake but accurate news. It confirms their view of the world, as surely as legends confirmed the medieval view of the world. Only an evil person would doubt their view, right?

Could legacy media turn and work for traditionalist or conservative governments? My view: Not likely. Traditionalists too often want to know where the beef is. They won’t thrive in an atmosphere where spin outstrips fact most of the time.

Increasingly, anyone under 60 who listens to "network news" or reads the big papers has made a moral decision to allow himself to be deceived, and must accept the consequences. Too bad if the rest of us will be governed in large part by these people's choices.



The CBC: Irrelevant, arrogant, biased. It’s time to pull the plug!

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commented 2015-10-20 01:26:59 -0400
Dave Bainard the Sun is owned by someone else now
commented 2015-10-20 01:16:06 -0400
Nathan LMAO, sorry they did no such thing, now tell me where the CBC story is on the Levin trial or the attack in Calgary??
The scandal was too outed to hide. Sorry but Canadians by and large are hidden from the truth.
commented 2015-10-19 05:14:17 -0400
Yeah, MSM is soooo pro-Liberal.

Just look at how the CBC exposed the sponsorship scandal. And how everyone else covered it endlessly.

Wouldn’t Conservatives love it if they could just get news media to bow more deeply to Harper.

Get this: there is no conspiracy. People generally buy news that confirms their pre-existing views. If you think MSM is “lefty biased” (of course EVERYTHING is “lefty biased” when you’re off in the deep end of right wing extremism, as it the case at The Rebel), the consider this: it means that Canadians by and large agree with them.
commented 2015-10-19 02:09:03 -0400
And anybody watch Global, CTV and/or CBC national news spin tonight??? Point made….
commented 2015-10-18 22:09:29 -0400
“Well beyond the limits of ethical journalism”???…. They certainly did but not the way Andrew Stephenson is spinning it… You only have to reflect on the tone and choice of election stories carried by Google News or The National Post site over the past two months to see reality…. John Ivison, the Post’s Ottawa bureau chief has been blasting Harper every chance he gets… Ditto Andrew Coyne who dictates their op-ed content… Just because we now at the very last minute see some EDITORIALS endorsing the Conservatives, it in no way negates the blatantly biased “anybody but Harper” avalanche in daily news coverage from coast to coast… Most media may or may not be owned by “deeply conservative owners” – which I also doubt – but that sure as Hell has not been reflected in the collective smear campaign run by their “reporters”…
commented 2015-10-18 21:30:42 -0400
In Canada, only ONE MSM institution endorsed a left wing candidate. The Globe went Right, the Postmedia chains so much so that they’re well beyond the limits of ethical journalism. Yet the Right still insists the “Media Party” is some sort of left wing conspiracy. The truth is rather the opposite, most media is owned and influenced by deeply conservative owners.
commented 2015-10-18 15:20:06 -0400
We certainly have a battle on our hands, but I do have faith that truth will win out in the end if the sane and moral keep speaking it and writing it and drawing it and seeking it out.
commented 2015-10-18 08:01:40 -0400
And now many papers including the Sun have discontinued the Discus section at the end of articles and opinion columns. Their excuse is “trolls” but we all know that they can’t bear to hear dissenting opinions that don’t follow their agenda.
commented 2015-10-18 05:11:48 -0400
Excellent prognosis Denyse!… With which I cannot disagree one iota… For example, the Los Angeles Times has a stated policy now that it will NOT run “letters to the editor” QUESTIONING claims of “global warming” and “climate change”!… So there you have it – one of the largest dailies in the Western USA effectively deciding to adopt a Three Monkeys stance against any dissenting opinion… Now why would any fair minded person even consider buying this BLEEPIN rag trying to pass itself off as a “NEWSPAPER”?… In Canada the censorship of dissenting conservative opinion is being done more covertly but just as evidently, as many, many from our ranks can attest to from having their submissions “quietly led around the corner and strangled”… (Believe that was a description of “Good Ideas submitted to a Committee”) But it perfectly describes what more and more passes for “news” in our true north strong and free…. And for any democracy to survive, that’s SCARYSCARY
commented 2015-10-18 03:36:32 -0400
If you consider yourself “progressive”, lying is a relative term/concept that has no black or white connotation – liying, fabricating and spinning narratives is simply something you do to win for whatever petty political crusade you are associating with at the moment – ends justify means in prog-think.

So it is unsurprising that dino media caught lying or fabricating does not elicit the decisive public censure it once did 0 when society had higher moral standards.
commented 2015-10-18 03:35:54 -0400
Yep, the HRC will be in police state and thought police mode if the left wins.
commented 2015-10-18 01:27:20 -0400
If the progressives win look at them bringing back Section 13. Scary shit.