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The Big Answer


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Trump vs. the Media

a book by Mollie Ziegler Hemingway

(our site's book review)

An Impressive List of Media Failures Has Led Us to a Trump Presidency

The Amazon blurb says that How bad is the problem of media bias? The answer can be summed up in a few words: President Donald J. Trump. Whether you love him or hate him, there’s no question that Trump gained a huge amount of support for his willingness to criticize the media in harsh and unsparing terms. The media seems baffled by the fact that it’s lost the trust of the American people.

The media seems baffled by the fact that it’s lost the trust of the American people, many of whom see them as fake news, except for Fox News
The media seems baffled by the fact that it’s lost the trust of the American people, many of whom see them as fake news, except for Fox News

It has responded by being extraordinarily defensive and doubling down on histrionic attacks. However, the American system has always depended on a strong and trusted media to hold those in power accountable. Journalist Mollie Hemingway looks at the impressive list of media failures that led us to this unique moment and asks, Is it possible for the media to recover its credibility before it’s too late?


Trump's Frequent Attacks on the Media Were Lapped Up by Voters

As Hemingway says, "The media shouldn't have been surprised by what Donald Trump was doing. In speeches and on social media throughout the campaign, Trump played the part of a busy media critic, calling various news outlets fake, disgusting, and dishonest. His frequent attacks on the media were lapped up by voters, frustrated by years of uneven coverage of conservative politicians and issues. Media outlets spent much of 2016 absolutely trashing Trump and assuring viewers and readers that Hillary Clinton would easily be elected. Trump pulled off a surprise victory that demonstrated the chasm between half of the electorate and the national political media."

FBI leftists discovered 100+ federal crimes committed by Hillary Clinton, none committed by Trump, yet the Fake Media and FBI ignored that and concentrated on Trump's questionable ethics; no wonder Trump got his rallies to chant 'lock her up!'
FBI leftists discovered 100+ federal crimes committed by Hillary Clinton, none committed by Trump, yet the Fake Media and FBI ignored that and concentrated on Trump's questionable ethics; no wonder Trump got his rallies to chant 'lock her up!' Witch Hunt: The Story of the Greatest Mass Delusion in American Political History

The Media Should Have Made Vital Changes So It Would Never Again Be So Out of Touch with the Americans It Covers—It Didn't

Hemingway continues: "The media should have made short-term systematic changes to its news-gathering process to make sure that it would never again be so out of touch with the Americans it covers. Instead, it reacted even more hysterically, pushing conspiracy theories that Trump had won because of a scourge of fake news or Russian meddling. Believing its anti-Trump coverage had been too limited during the campaign, the media began on all-out assault of negative news against him, pushing dozens of what turned out to be false stories, such as those suggesting that transgender teen suicide rates had spiked in the immediate aftermath of Trump's election, that three states had had their elections hacked, etc. . . . "

The fake news media mainstream media has been pushing dozens of what turned out to be false stories, such as the Hillary Clinton Pizzagate conspiracy story where she was using a pizza joint as a child sex ring
The fake news media mainstream media has been pushing dozens of what turned out to be false stories, such as the Hillary Clinton Pizzagate conspiracy story where she was using a pizza joint as a child sex ring

Hemingway goes on: "Trump's victory has advanced the developing realization among many Americans that the media has completely abdicated its responsibility and shown itself hostile to the values and ideas many Americans hold. Much of the population no longer believes the media should be treated deferentially and given the power to shape, much less control, public opinion. . . . Along came Trump, the brilliant master of exploiting public opinion" [pointing out] the media's undeniable coordination (colluding?) with the Democratic party; the media's presentation of opinions as facts, and vice versa; and the ugly double standards it employed in its coverage because of partisanship.


There Was No Way for Conservatives to Operate Successfully in a Rigged System

For decades, the media has been having a love affair with liberals and the Democrats, although neither would admit it. The more this institutional incest occurred, the less either would admit it and the more both were hysterically defensive when confronted with incontrovertible evidence of this truth. There was no way for conservatives to operate successfully in a rigged system where the media allowed them to be respected as the principled opposition to liberal politics only as long as they were shackled and limited by biased news coverage. Something had to give. That something was Trump.

There was no way for conservatives to operate successfully in a rigged system where the media allowed them to be respected as the principled opposition to liberal politics only as long as they were shackled and limited by biased news coverage. Something had to give. That something was Trump
There was no way for conservatives to operate successfully in a rigged system where the media allowed them to be respected as the principled opposition to liberal politics only as long as they were shackled and limited by biased news coverage. Something had to give. That something was Trump

So now we have two medias in the USA: the hysterically defensive liberal media of the liberals and the Democrats, and the conservative media like Fox News and Breitbart and thousands of conservative blogs and websites, all of which get ignored by the powers-that-be in the liberal media. The mainstream media attempts to sell the fraudulent idea that the mainstream media covers both conservative and liberal ideas fairly. But in 2020, absolutely no one buys this hollow fiction.


No Longer Champions of Tolerance and Free Speech, the "Illiberal Left" Now Viciously Attacks and Silences Anyone with Alternative Points of View

To gauge the magnitude of this hollowness, simply look at the liberal narrative, Antifa, and political correctness. The Right blasts the Left's forced march towards conformity in an exposé of the illiberal war on free speech. No longer champions of tolerance and free speech, the "illiberal Left" now viciously attacks and silences anyone with alternative points of view.

The illiberal left has become an Orwellian Big Brother, policing what it deems acceptable speech and opinions
The illiberal left has become an Orwellian Big Brother, policing what it deems acceptable speech and opinions


While preaching tolerance and claiming to hold liberal values, the 'illiberal left' works to delegitimize political and ideological opponents in ways that stifle freedom of expression, thought, and religious belief
While preaching tolerance and claiming to hold liberal values, the 'illiberal left' works to delegitimize political and ideological opponents in ways that stifle freedom of expression, thought, and religious belief

While preaching tolerance and claiming to hold liberal values, the "illiberal left" works to delegitimize political and ideological opponents in ways that stifle freedom of expression, thought, and religious belief. "Truth" matters little to the illiberal left, for whom ideology is everything. You either buy what they are selling or they will make your life miserable. They will censor you, gag you, assault you, troll you, and expell you from college. Political correctness is not just "their" way. It's the ONLY way!

The PC Police ensure that everything we see and hear conforms to their bigoted standards; But what happens if we don't agree? Simple: change our minds!
The PC Police ensure that everything we see and hear conforms to their bigoted standards; But what happens if we don't agree? Simple: change our minds!


The 2020 PC-obsessed Thought Police seek any thoughts or ideas that are not in the accepted liberal narrative so they can hit the offenders with character assassination, demonization, and dehumanizing tactics and silence them
The 2020 PC-obsessed Thought Police seek any thoughts or ideas that are not in the accepted liberal narrative so they can hit the offenders with character assassination, demonization, and dehumanizing tactics and silence them

Harvard psychology professor and bestselling author Steven Pinker singled out university campuses for their hostility to free speech, likening them to the worst authoritarian regimes in history. The left no longer wants to support their views with logic and argument and discussion—debates are out of the question.

The left no longer wants to support their views with logic and argument and discussion—debates are out of the question
The left no longer wants to support their views with logic and argument and discussion—debates are out of the question


The victims' revolution is a toxic narrative that has labelled every group a victim except white males
The victims' revolution is a toxic narrative that has labelled every group a victim except white males

Many Formerly Loyal Democrats Are Withholding Their Votes from the Party, in Large Part Due to Its Surrender to Identity Poltics

Many formerly loyal Democrats are withholding their votes from the Party, in large part due to its surrender to identity poltics. High schools and universities are pushing identity politics and political correctness rather than required civics classes that would explain and teach the tenets of civics. The result is that students are culturally ignorant, citizenship challenged, and barely even American, since they have no clue of what this means, or why they should be grateful for their opportunity to be an American citizen.

The main lesson the liberals teach is victimization dogma and the main expectation they have of you as you hear their insidious lesson is conformity—NEVER question the liberal narrative!
The main lesson the liberals teach is victimization dogma and the main expectation they have of you as you hear their insidious lesson is conformity—NEVER question the liberal narrative!

Neither Bruce Bawer (The Victims' Revolution: The Rise of Identity Studies and the Closing of the Liberal Mind) nor ourselves have much patience for this pathetic victimization context that has taken education by the neck and shaken the life out of it until all that is left is a few hollow, toxic, self-important dogmas. PC dogma "is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing," to borrow from William Shakespeare. Macbeth said it as he learned of his wife's death, we say it as we learned of the death of education, sacrificed on the PC altar of the liberal narrative.

The suffering victim on the cross behind the podium in the PC church is African-American! This epitomizes the mind-set of the new PC religion of whites as victimizers and blacks as victims—The Church of Political Correctness
The suffering victim on the cross behind the podium in the PC church is African-American! This epitomizes the mind-set of the new PC religion of whites as victimizers and blacks as victims—The Church of Political Correctness


Bored with normal religions, multiculturalism fanatics created a new religion, a secular theocracy based on Political Correctness
Bored with normal religions, multiculturalism fanatics created a new religion, a secular theocracy based on Political Correctness

President Trump believes that by being politically correct, Americans are blind to facts and therefore putting our nation in danger. “They have put political correctness above common sense, above your safety, and above all else,” the President declared after a Muslim gunman killed 49 people at a nightclub in Orlando. “I refuse to be politically correct.” (Good for him!) "Political correctness is a weapon used to silence people who tell the truth." says Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Glenn Beck says "Political correctness doesn't change us, it shuts us up."


Where Is Walter Cronkite When We Need Him?

Trump vs. the Media is a great read on how Trump was able to outmaneuver the Media to get directly to voters in an election that rocked the political establishment. Samantha Styler said, “I am a gay millennial woman and I voted for Donald Trump because I oppose the political correctness movement, which has become a fascist ideology of silence and ignorance. After months of going back and forth, I decided to listen to him directly and not through minced and filtered quotes from the mainstream media.” (Good decision, Samantha!) The decline in the public' trust has been evident for the last three decades to most Republicans and some Democrats and Libertarians. The book presents a very capable analysis of the way America's major mainstream news outlets have begun using journalism to promote a specific political and cultural doctrine. The truth is what news should represent. Not opinions.

Where is Walter Cronkite when you need him? We need fewer partisans and more objective reporters like Cronkite!
Where is Walter Cronkite when you need him? We need fewer partisans and more objective reporters like Cronkite!

National Political Media Are Primarily a Sewer, Having 1/3 the Level of Approval from the Public that Trump Gets

"This president is more articulate and forthcoming with the press than were Presidents Eisenhower, Ford, Reagan, and the Bushes . . . Trump has his infelicities, but he never assailed any foundations of American democracy and he is the president. He is often untruthful, but he is genuine and has done more of what he promised to do when seeking the office than any president since Coolidge. The national political media are primarily a sewer, accorded about a third of the level of approval from the public that the president enjoys. Their chief purpose appears to be to misinform and to destroy the first president in living memory who has called them the unprofessional rag-tag band of hypocrites that many of them are. It is the media who have disgraced and are endangering the free press, not the president they have so grossly and lengthily defamed." (Source: The Media Versus Trump, Conrad Black, National Review)

'When somebody is the president of the United States, the authority is total,' Trump said, who seemed to believe that his inauguration was the same as being crowned king—a scary thought even to Republicans!
'When somebody is the president of the United States, the authority is total,' Trump said, who seemed to believe that his inauguration was the same as being crowned king—a scary thought even to Republicans!

"'When somebody is the president of the United States, the authority is total,' Trump said, referring to matters of public health and police powers inside the states. The assertion was dogpiled by legal analysts as a gross and wild misreading of the constitution. But Trump was not just challenged on the airwaves and on Twitter – he was challenged in the room, including by Paula Reid of CBS News, who asked him what his administration did in the month of February, when the health department declared an emergency, to fight the virus. In response he attacked the media’s 'approval rating'. [which is only 1/3 as high as Trump's] Then Trump was confronted by CNN White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins, who asked him about his 'authority is total' line. 'That is not true,' Collins said." (Source: Trump claims 'total authority' and attacks media in chaotic coronavirus briefing, Tom McCarthy, the Guardian)

Trump, like Eric Cartman, wants us to 'respect his authoritah'—'When somebody is the president of the United States, the authority is total,' Trump said, incorrectly
Trump, like Eric Cartman, wants us to 'respect his authoritah'—'When somebody is the president of the United States, the authority is total,' Trump said, incorrectly

60% of Poll Respondents Supported Trump’s Coronavirus Policies

"The hatred of President Trump by the left-wing media is so virulent that several of the outlets (like CNN and NPR) have periodically refused to telecast the Trump Team’s Carona Virus news conferences. Some analysts conclude the news blackout is to hide the success of President Trump’s policies. A March Gallup poll indicated 60% of the respondents supported Trump’s policies in this national emergency, so the anti-Trump media and pundits don’t want this widely known before the 2020 elections. Vice President Michael Pence and the team physicians, Drs. Anthony Fauci, National Institute of Health administrator, Dr. Deborah Birx, White House virus defense coordinator and former U.S. Army colonel in the medical corps, and Admiral Jerome Adams, U.S. Surgeon General, head of the U.S. Public Health Service, have done an exemplary job of informing the public about the nature and response to the virus." (Source: The Media vs Trump in the Coronavirus War (OPINION), Tom Ostrom, krocnews)

White House Press Briefing (49668784683)
Coronavirus task force briefings are increasingly coming to resemble campaign rallies without the crowds: excuses for Donald Trump to showboat in front of TV cameras, praise his own managerial brilliance, and gratuitously insult reporters, pleasing his base

"The president’s nightly coronavirus task force briefings are increasingly coming to resemble campaign rallies without the crowds: excuses for Donald Trump to showboat in front of TV cameras, praise his own managerial brilliance, and gratuitously insult reporters. So why are they still being taken seriously by cable news? . . . So, in this election year of all years, is there a way to help make media coverage of this uniquely awful president any better? Or is it just too late? The only thing perhaps more depressing and more frustrating than getting the daily U.S. death toll from the coronavirus, which is now at around two thousand deaths a day, is watching the man most responsible for those deaths praise himself on live television every evening: Trump:' Everybody’s amazed at the job we’re doing… And you have doctors saying that we’ve done an incredible job' . . . why aren’t the Democrats doing a daily briefing of their own, offering actual scientific information and rebutting Trump’s lies every night?" (Source: The Media Helped Elect Trump in 2016. Are They Doing It Again?, Mehdi Hasan, The Intercept)

A toddler threw a self-pitying tantrum on live television on Monday night. Unfortunately, he was 73 years old, wearing a long red tie and running the world’s most powerful country
A toddler threw a self-pitying tantrum on live television on Monday night. Unfortunately, he was 73 years old, wearing a long red tie and running the world’s most powerful country

"A toddler threw a self-pitying tantrum on live television on Monday night. Unfortunately, he was 73 years old, wearing a long red tie and running the world’s most powerful country.”—the Guardian

Mae West LAT
Mae West is like Trump: "Call me anything, but call me often"

Trump is an expert brander, marketer, and—unfortunately—politician. The first two are obvious, the second not so much. He uses a successful demagogic playbook that shows him how to get the media working against itself by calling them fake, liars, and disgusting and then chuckling as the media once again reports his latest outrages, playing right into his hands. Again. It shows him how to get an entire national political party eating out of his hand by the use of fear, legal political blackmail, legal political extortion, and threats. It shows him stealing the news cycle day after day, month after month, by use of chaos, craziness, tantrums, lies, and insulting damn near anyone. It points out the incredible power of Twitter to successfully upstage the rest of the day's news and remain in the limelight. In other words, Trump takes it as a failure if they're talking about someone beside him—he's like Mae West: "Call me anything, but call me often."

Trump's narcissism is visible to all and he acts as though he were ten feet tall, but when the media perpetually chastize him for being a silly toddler having no idea what he is doing, they make his point
Trump's narcissism is visible to all and he acts as though he were ten feet tall, but when the media perpetually chastize him for being a silly toddler having no idea what he is doing, they make his point