Political Cartoon: Mainstream Media Bias, Smear Campaign, Fake News

Political Cartoon:

Mainstream Media Bias, Smear Campaign, Fake News

Beat of a Different Drum

Fake news is alive and well in the mainstream media when covering the Covington Catholic kids and Nathan Phillips native American instigator. Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2019.

More A.F. Branco cartoons at FlagAnd Cross.com here.

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Cultural Marxism vs. Judeo-Christian Culture: Smear Campaign against Catholic Students; War on Men

Culture Wars

Cultural Marxism vs. Judeo-Christian Culture:

Smear Campaign against Catholic Students

Cultural Marxism Part 1

History Timeline: How Cultural Marxism  stole our Judeo-Christian Culture while no one noticed

Tucker: MAGA hat-wearing students smeared by media

Covington Catholic chaperone: Our kids were targeted

 4 Lessons We Can Learn From The Despicable Smear Campaign Against The Covington Catholic Students

Matt Walsh

Daily Wire

It was a weird video, and confusing, and the kind of thing that screams “OUT OF CONTEXT.” But few people wondered about the context or waited to find out what it might be. Instead, a massive dog pile formed, and within hours the boys were being villainized, denounced, doxxed, and threatened with expulsion.

Then more footage emerged. An almost two-hour clip apparently shot by a member of a radical cult called the Black Hebrew Israelites paints a very different picture. It shows members of the BHI screaming taunts and insults at the students. The radicals call the kids “crackers” and “incest children” and “future school shooters.” They shout anti-gay slurs. At one point, someone (presumably a member of the group) tells the kids to “go back to Europe.” Another video shows BHI warning a black student from the school that his white classmates will try to “steal [his] organs.” The young men display remarkable poise in the face of this provocation. Rather than responding in kind, they try to drown out the hate with pep rally-style cheers.

Later, Phillips called the students “beasts,” claimed that they were the aggressors against the black men, and said that he wanted to leave the situation but was prevented from doing so. These are all lies. It seems that Phillips wanted to provoke the students. When he failed, he decided to go with Plan B: defamation.

All in all, I think this whole saga should teach us a few things that any slightly observant person already knew:

1) Your social media hot take can wait for a day or two.

We all seem to be under the impression that the world will stop rotating on its axis if we don’t immediately offer our two cents on every event, the moment it occurs. Many otherwise intelligent people have made fools of themselves (myself included) because they felt the need to voice an opinion on an issue as soon as it came to their attention. But there really isn’t much good that can come of an opinion dashed off and posted to the internet on the fly. Especially when you’re simply adding to a chorus of people who have already expressed that exact point of view. Even if you’re right, your perspective is redundant and useless. If you’re wrong, you’ve just contributed to mass hysteria. So, why not wait? Everyone can survive without your opinion for a few hours while you let the facts come in. There is no downside to taking your time. There is enormous downside to jumping the gun.

2) White teen-aged boys are not evil.

A lot of people had no problem accepting the narrative that was first presented because they really do think — or, more precisely, want to think — that white boys carry on this way routinely. These are mostly the same people who ate up every rumor and accusation against Kavanaugh because they desperately want to believe that privileged white teenagers go around casually gang raping women for sport. These false narratives tell us nothing at all about young white men, but they do tell us something very disturbing about the members of the left-wing pitchfork mob. Namely, that these people hate white men. Hate them. Especially Christian ones. And that’s why some of them, even after finding out the whole story, still justified their reaction on the basis that the sight of a white teenager’s face “causes a visceral reaction.”

3) The media is the enemy of the people.

smear-campaignTrump was right. The news media is the enemy of the people. Certain types of people, anyway. If you happen to be a member of the wrong demographic, the media will eagerly spread lies about you. They will try to destroy your life. They will send the mob to your front door. They will incite threats against your family. They will tear you to pieces. What else can we call them but enemies? This certainly isn’t how friends or allies behave, last I checked.

4) Someone is going to get killed.

On a related note, it’s only a matter of time before a victim of a media-led smear campaign winds up dead. What will the inciters and orchestrators of the outrage mob say then? “We had no idea it would come to this”? Yes, you did. When you put a person’s name and face out there, and you tell the world an outlandishly false story about them, you are lighting a match in a forest full of dry leaves. If somebody finally burns, it’s your fault. I can only hope, when that terrible day comes, that at least a few of the smear merchants will go to jail.

In the meantime, and to hopefully stave off this tragic eventuality, we need some ethical and generous lawyers to come to the defense of the victims, pro bono, and sue the defamers and inciters into oblivion. News outlets that run defamatory and libelous reports about innocent people should face severe financial consequences. Celebrities like Kathy Griffin, who encouraged her fans to retaliate against the high school boys, should be bankrupted by lawsuits. None of this has anything to do with free speech. It’s libel. It’s illegal. And that’s how it should be treated.

https://www.dailywire.com/news/42418/walsh-4-lessons-we-can-learn-despicable-smear-matt-walsh

PJ Media: Lawyer for Covington Catholic HS Families Threatens Lawsuits Against Media Unless They Retract False Stories

Los Angeles-based trial lawyer Robert Barnes offered to represent the Covington families for free should they decide to sue the New York Times. 

 

War on Men

Masculinity Is Not Toxic, but the APA Might Be

Jan 18, 2019 01:00 am
What is toxic is not masculinity, but the imposition of warped views on our sons, our grandsons, our country, and our future.

“Toxic Masculinity? 43% of boys are raised by single mothers. 78% of teachers are female. So, close to 50% of boys have 100% feminine influence at home and 80% feminine influence at school. Toxic masculinity isn’t the problem. The lack of masculinity is.”

Masculinity Is Not Toxic, but the APA Might Be

Jan 18, 2019 01:00 am
What is toxic is not masculinity, but the imposition of warped views on our sons, our grandsons, our country, and our future.

Gillette Commercial 28th Most Disliked YouTube Video of All Time

 

 

Political Cartoon: Justice for All defeats Smear Campaign

Political Cartoon:

Justice for All defeats Smear Campaign

After all the Democrat’s dirty sleazy tricks, obstructing, and anti-due process rhetoric Judge Kavanaugh is now Justice Kavanaugh on the U.S. Supreme Court. Political Cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2018.

See more Legal Insurrection Branco cartoons, click here.

Now that the smoke has cleared, some say the Democrats will pay a heavy price for their sleazy dirty tricks and assault on Justice Kavanaugh. Political Cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2018.

More A.F. Branco Cartoons at The Daily Torch

Political Cartoon: Accuser Ford’s False Accusation weaponized Smear Campaign against Justice System

Political Cartoon:

Accuser Ford’s False Accusation weaponized Smear Campaign against Justice System

For behold, they do study at this time that they may destroy the liberty of thy people. ~Alma 8:17

The Democrat party has now weaponized the #MeToo movement devastating equal justice under the law along with the presumption of innocence. Political Cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2018.

See more Legal Insurrection Branco cartoons, click here.

…Cotton: Resembles ‘Stalinist Show Trials’…

On Tuesday’s “Hugh Hewitt Show,” Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR) argued that some of the statements made by Democratic senators about Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh “resemble the kind of Stalinist show trials you saw in the Soviet Union,” where making an accusation is enough.

Accuser Ford has participated in anti-Trump protests

By Jessica McBride

Updated Sep 17, 2018 at 11:50pm

Re: Christine Ford

Christine Ford participated in a women’s march protesting Trump, a report says.

Christine Blasey Ford, the accuser of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, participated in a women’s march protesting President Donald Trump last year, according to a friend of Blasey Ford’s who spoke to The Mercury News.

The California newspaper quoted Rebecca White, described as “one of Blasey Ford’s neighbors and a good friend.” In the article, White praises Ford’s “honesty and truth” and claims Ford told her about the alleged attack in 2017 without using Kavanaugh’s name. She also revealed a previously unreported detail about Blasey Ford’s politics: That Ford took part in a women’s march protesting President Trump, who nominated Kavanaugh.

The Mercury News, in an article by journalist Julia Prodis Sulek, reported that White told its journalist that “Blasey Ford participated in a local Women’s March protesting Trump last year.” White told the Mercury News she worried that Blasey Ford’s alliance with “liberal causes” will increase tensions when Blasey Ford testifies before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday, September 24, 2018. White indicated to the newspaper that Ford’s political involvement may enable her to speak “authoritatively” before the committee, however.

Trump: ‘Pray for Brett Kavanaugh and His Family!’

2 Men Claim Blasey Ford Mistook Them for Kavanaugh

Avenatti Disaster: Gang Rape Accuser’s Boyfriend Just Blew Her Credibility Apart

New Accuser Got Settlement for Past Sex Claim, Used Ford Attorney’s Firm To Get It

Life in a Gynocracy

Sep 30, 2018 01:00 am
False rape claims are placing us at peril of witch hunts and then, in time, against all who will not bow to leftist rule.

Kavanaugh Letter to Grassley: I Will Not Be Intimidated by Smear Campaign, Character Assassination

Kavanaugh Letter to Grassley:

I Will Not Be Intimidated by Smear Campaign, Character Assassination

Kavanaugh Fights Back!

Defies ‘grotesque and obvious character assassination’

‘Vile threats of violence against my family’

Kavanaugh’s Letter to the Committee: I Will Not Be Intimidated

Rush Limbaugh

Trump is standing by Kavanaugh. In this letter to Grassley and Feinstein, Kavanaugh says, “I will not be intimidated into withdrawing from this process. The coordinated effort to destroy my good name will not drive me out. The vile threats of violence against my family will not drive me out.” It begins, “Dear Chairman Grassley and Ranking Member Feinstein: When I testified in front of the Senate three weeks ago, I explained my belief that fair process is foundational to justice and to our democracy.

“At that time, I sat before the Senate Judiciary Committee for more than 31 hours and answered questions under oath. I then answered more questions at a confidential session. The following week, I responded to more than 1,200 written questions, more than have been submitted to all previous Supreme Court nominees combined.” Twelve hundred! One-thousand-two-hundred questions! That’s “more than have been submitted to all previous Supreme Court nominees combined.

“Only after that exhaustive process was complete did I learn, through the news media, about a 36-year-old allegation from high school that had been asserted months earlier and withheld from me throughout the hearing process. First, it was an anonymous allegation that I categorically and unequivocally denied. Soon after the accuser was identified. I repeated my denial on the record and made clear that I wished to appear before the committee. I then repeated my denial to committee investigators — under criminal penalties for false statements.

“These are smears, pure and simple. And they debase our public discourse. But they are also a threat to any man or woman who wishes to serve our country. Such grotesque and obvious character assassination — if allowed to succeed — will dissuade competent and good people of all political persuasions from service.” That’s right, and that’s exactly what the left wants. Make no mistake. The left would be happy if all decent people punted and said, “I want nothing to do with government.” Nothing would make them happier.

Judge Kavanaugh is exactly right about that. He continues, “As I told the committee during my hearing, a federal judge must be independent, not swayed by public or political pressure. That is the kind of judge I will always be. I will not be intimidated into withdrawing from this process. The coordinated effort to destroy my good name will not drive me out. The vile threats of violence against my family will not drive me out.

“The last-minute character assassination will not succeed. I have devoted my career to serving the public and the cause of justice, and particularly to promoting the equality and dignity of women. Women from every phase of my life have come forward to attest to my character. I am grateful to them. I owe it to them, and to my family, to defend my integrity and my name. I look forward to answering questions from the Senate on Thursday. Sincerely, Brett M. Kavanaugh.”

Where Does the “Right to Be Heard” End?

 

Freedom of Speech does not grant right to be heard

Sep 24, 2018

RUSH: People misconstrue the First Amendment’s right to free speech to also mean right to be heard.

We don’t even know who this accuser is, and Avenatti — at this moment — is demanding to be heard by the Senate Judiciary Committee. And he’s using the personal pronoun “we” demand to be heard.

RUSH: You know, one of my big bugaboos, ladies and gentlemen, is this business of “right to be heard.” People misconstrue the First Amendment’s right to free speech to also mean right to be heard, and we’re hearing it now in the case of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford that she has “a right to be heard.” This is all part of the left trying to stand our system of jurisprudence upside down and on its head.

Well, let me ask this: Once it becomes pretty obvious that a person’s making false claims of attempted rape, at what point do we draw a line and say, “We no longer have to grant this opportunity to be heard and share a story”?

…Every Witness Named by Accusers Sides — with Kavanaugh

…McConnell Blasts ‘Smear Campaign’… Vote in ‘Near Future’

Gallup: Trump Highest Approval in Decade…

 

Political Cartoons: Media Bias Backfires

Political Cartoons:

Media Bias Backfires

1 Picture worth 1,000 words. Enjoy these cartoonists’ brilliant portrayals which pierce the smear campaign of convoluted media drivel. ~C.D.

History Pattern, Kangaroo Court.  It is useful to note a timely history pattern from ancient Native American history: Condemning the righteous because of their righteousness; letting the guilty and the wicked go unpunished because of their money; and moreover to be held in office at the head of government, to rule and do according to their wills, that they might get gain and glory of the world, and, moreover, that they might the more easily commit adultery, and steal, and kill, and do according to their own wills—Helaman 7:5

 

Stop the Presses

Thanks to A.F. Branco at Legal Insurrection.com for another  great cartoon

Trump fires back after Manafort indictment

 

Manafort joined the Trump campaign in March 2016 and developed a strategy that convinced delegates not to break with Trump in favor of establishment candidates. Trump then appointed the veteran Republican strategist as chairman and chief strategist of his campaign.

Months later, Trump fired Manafort after learning his chairman received more than $12 million in undisclosed payments from former Ukrainian president Victor F. Yanukovych, who he spent years working for as a political consultant.

Mueller was appointed by the Justice Department in May to lead the investigation into Trump campaign officials’ relationships with Russian operatives. But the focus now actually may be turning to the Democrats.

President Trump contends the “real Russia story” is the sale of 20 percent of U.S. uranium assets to a Russian company under Clinton’s watch.

Critics also have pointed to Mueller’s relationship with fired FBI chief James Comey and the fact that he stacked his team of investigators with lawyers who had openly supported Hillary Clinton in the election. The Mail reported it was unclear if Mueller still has a strategy to “squeeze” Manafort” for information about the 2016 election “and Russian’s possible interference with it.”

The allegations concern actions that all predate the Trump campaign, and Trump’s name doesn’t appear in the 31-page indictment by Mueller, who in the document makes no allegations of collusion with Russia.

Culture Wars: Gold Star Widow releases call with Trump; Reveals Democrat Smear Campaign against President Trump that Dishonors Fallen Soldiers

Culture Wars:

There are so many liberal lies swirling around by anti-American hate groups bent on destroying a duly elected patriotic President. It is important to know the truth, which is the purpose of this blog. Below is an actual call President Trump made to a Gold Star widow in April. After that, General Kelly sets the record straight in the face of a very un-compassionate smear campaign by a democrat congresswoman. We all must diligently discern truth from falsehood. Consider the fruits of the anti-American Left’s relentless smear campaign: hatred against God, hatred against decent Americans and American heroes. ~C.D.

Gold Star Widow releases call with Trump; Reveals Democrat Smear Campaign against President Trump that Dishonors Fallen Soldiers

Truth about Trump

Gold Star Widow Shares Her Call with President Trump

Gold star widow Natasha De Alencar released the audio of a phone conversation she had with President Donald Trump in April about the death of her husband who was killed in Afghanistan.

“I am so sorry to hear about the whole situation. What a horrible thing, except that he’s an unbelievable hero,” Trump told her in the call about her husband Army Staff Sgt. Mark R. De Alencar, which The Washington Post released.

“Thank you. I really, really appreciated it,” she said. “I really do, sir.”

Natasha De Alencar had just returned home on April 12 after making T-shirts and pillowcases in her husband’s memory when the Army casualty assistance officer told her there was someone on the phone for her. It was President Trump.

Days before, two Army men told her that her husband, Army Staff Sgt. Mark R. De Alencar, had been killed in Afghanistan on April 8.

De Alencar was killed during a firefight with Islamic State fighters in eastern Afghanistan. He was a member of the 7th Special Forces Group.

He left behind five children — Deshaune, 20, Octavia, 18, ­Rodrigo, 16, Tatiyana, 13, and Marcos, 5 — and his wife of 15 years.

Trump opened by saying how sorry he is about the “whole situation,” before adding that De Alencar’s husband was “an unbelievable hero.”

“At that moment when my world was upside down and me and my kids didn’t know which way we were going, it felt like I was talking to just another regular human,” De Alencar said.

Later in the call, Trump invited De Alencar to the White House, telling her, “If you’re around Washington, you come over and see me in the Oval Office,” before asking about her oldest son, Deshaun, who is playing college football at Missouri Valley College in Marshall, Mo.

De Alencar told Trump that her son had received a scholarship, and Trump asked whether it was an academic or sports scholarship. (It was an academic scholarship.)

The conversation then shifted to De Alencar’s four other children. Trump asked her to say hello to them for him and to “tell them their father was a great hero that I respected.”

The phone call ended with Trump repeating his invitation to the White House and advising De Alencar to take care of herself. In total, the conversation lasted just under four minutes.

“It was a moment of niceness that we needed because we were going through hell,” De Alencar said.

Trump also told the widow if she is ever in Washington D.C. that she is welcome in the Oval Office.

“If you’re around Washington, you come over and see me in the Oval Office,” he said. “You just come over and see me because you are just the kind of family … this is what we want.”

“Say hello to your children, and tell them your father he was a great hero that I respected,” Trump said. “Just tell them I said your father was a great hero.”

 

RUSH LIMBAUGH: I want to go through the audio sound bites. This happened yesterday. It happened after the program yesterday, the Chief of Staff John Kelly going to the press room in the White House and making his statement in the middle of this controversy over whether or not Trump knows what to say and says the right things when he calls the families of military people killed in action.

RUSH: Now before setting up General Kelly, I want to go back, and this is a montage of what the Obama administration told Gold Star families after Benghazi.

RUSH:it was a premeditated terrorist attack and the video had nothing to do with it. You want to talk about lying to Gold Star families?

Setting the Record Straight: Chief of Staff John Kelly talks about His Own Son’s Sacrifice

As reporters shouted questions, Kelly responded, “Is anyone here a gold star parent or sibling?”

The room was silent.

 

Gen. Kelly Serves: Moving Defense of American Soldiers, Gold Star Families, POTUS..

…WH COS: ‘Stunned’ Rep. Wilson Politicized President’s Call…Is Nothing Sacred?…

…’Mad Hatter’ Dissed: ‘Empty barrels make the most noise’

 

KELLY: Most Americans don’t know what happens when we lose one of our soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, or Coast Guardsmen in combat. So let me tell you what happens. Their buddies wrap them in whatever passes as a shroud, puts them on a helicopter as a routine and sends them home. Their first stop along the way is when they’re packed in ice, typically at the airhead, and then they’re flown to usually Europe, where they’re then packed in ice again and flown to Dover Air Force Base where Dover takes care of the remains, embalms them and meticulously dresses them in the uniform with the medals that they’ve earned, the emblems of their service. And then puts them on another airplane linked up with a casualty officer escort that takes them home.

KELLY: Hours after my son was killed, his friends were calling us from Afghanistan telling us what a great guy he was. Those are the only phone calls that really matter. If you elect to call a family like this, it is about the most difficult thing you could imagine. There’s no perfect way to make that phone call. When I took this job and talked to President Trump about how to do it, my first recommendation was he not do it, because it’s not the phone call that parents, family members are looking forward to. It’s a nice to-do in my opinion, in any event. He asked me about previous presidents. And I said I can tell you that President Obama, who was my Commander in Chief when I was on active duty, did not call my family.

RUSH: There you go. Now, I don’t know what you’ve heard about this, but when this kerfuffle began and Trump was being hit from all sides, as always, he brought in General Kelly and he mentioned that very point. That Obama didn’t take the time to call General Kelly or his family. Then we got stories about how Kelly was outraged and shamed and sorry that Trump had chosen to politicize the death of his son.

Well, I guess that wasn’t true either, because here’s Kelly setting the record straight. Obama didn’t call him. The Drive-Bys and everybody involved wanted to make it look like Trump had lied because that’s what they always try to make it look like. So they sit there shocked and devastated by what they’ve heard. But they get over it pretty quickly, because none of this is going to shape in any way their take on this event. Hearing the truth, hearing the details, does not deter the forces arrayed against Donald Trump on this. Another salient point in that bite is General Kelly also confirming that he told President Trump not to do it, it’s a tough call. It’s difficult to know what to say.

We have people whose job it is to inform the parents. Do you know what that policy is, by the way? You’ve seen it. You’ve seen it portrayed in movies, where a mother or father or family is happily engaged and getting ready for the day and there’s a knock on the door. The mother or father answers the door and it’s two uniformed military personnel.

The one thing I didn’t know is that the policy is for the uniformed military personnel who are going to convey the information to the family show up before dawn, and they park outside the home and they wait until very first light, before people may even be up. And at first light, they approach the front door and knock on it.

And the theory being that this needs to be the first thing the family hears in their day. As opposed to at 10:00 when people are gone, the whole family is not there. As opposed to later that night, it’s best to do this at the beginning of the day. And there is a studied policy for this based on learned experience with all this. And General Kelly told Trump don’t do it, it’s a difficult thing to do. They’re not expecting to hear from you, so don’t do it. Trump told Kelly he wanted to do it, and did it. And here’s Kelly explaining that.

KELLY: I think he very bravely does make those calls. So he called four people the other day and expressed his condolences in the best way that he could. And he said to me: “What do I say?” I said to him, “Sir, there’s nothing you can do to lighten the burden on these families. But let me tell you what I tell them. Let me tell you what my best friend, Joe Dunford, told me, because he was my casualty officer. He said: ‘Kel, he was doing exactly what he wanted to do when he was killed. He knew what he was getting into by joining that one percent. He knew what the possibilities were because we’re at war. And when he died –‘” and the four cases we’re talking about, Niger, my son’s case in Afghanistan, “‘– when he died, he was surrounded by the best men on this earth, his friends.’” That’s what the president tried to say to four families the other day.

RUSH: Okay. So there’s Kelly explaining what he told Trump that he says. He said that Trump asked him what to say. Well, you know when I first heard, by the way, when this really whacko Democrat Congresswoman from down here in Florida — I mean, she’s a piece of work. She’s out there claiming, “My kids are going to recognize me as a rock star.” She thinks she’s really popular now because the White House is talking about her.

He said, “He was doing exactly what he wanted to do when he was killed.” Trump had his own way of verbalizing that. But the fact that they harped on this, and lying about the fact that Trump didn’t even call somebody and then promised to send somebody $25,000 and Trump didn’t send the money — when he did send the money. The check was sent. (sigh) It just… Every day, every day these people are on the assault.

Empty Barrel: Nothing’s Sacred

To me, “Empty Barrel” is an apt metaphor for Wilson. Her total lack of compassion or respect for those who gave their lives for her freedom to express her hatred makes one question if her soul is empty as well. ~C.D.

KELLY: I was stunned when I came to work yesterday morning — and brokenhearted — at what I saw a member of Congress doing. A member of Congress who listened in on a phone call from the president of the United States to a young wife, and in his way tried to express that opinion that he’s a brave man, a fallen hero. He knew what he was getting himself into, because he enlisted. There’s no reason to enlist. He enlisted, and he was where he wanted to be — exactly where he wanted to be — with exactly the people he wanted to be with when his life was taken. That was the message.

It stuns me that a member of Congress would have listened in on that conversation. It absolutely stuns me. I thought at least that was sacred. You know, when I was a kid growing up, a lot of things were sacred in our country. Women were sacred and looked upon with great honor. That’s obviously not the case anymore, as we see from recent cases. Life? The dignity of life was sacred. That’s gone. Religion? That seems to be gone as well. Gold Star families? I think that left in the convention over the summer. I just thought the selfless devotion that brings a man or woman to die on the battlefield… I just thought that that might be sacred.

KELLY: I went to the dedication of the new FBI field office in Miami, and it was dedicated to two men who were killed in a firefight in Miami against drug traffickers. There were family members there. Some of the children that were there were only 3 or 4 years old when their dads were killed on that street in Miami-Dade. Three of the men that survived the fight were there and gave a rendition of how brave those men were and how they gave their lives. And a congresswoman stood up, and — in a long tradition of empty barrels making the most noise — stood up there in all of that, and talked about how she was instrumental in getting the funding for that building, and how she took care of her constituents because she got the money.

And she just called up President Obama, and on that phone call, he gave the money — the $20 million — to build the building. And she sat down. And we were stunned, stunned that she’d done it. Even for someone that is that empty a barrel, we were stunned. I still hope, as you write your stories — and I appeal to America — that let’s not let this maybe last thing that is held sacred in our society: A young man, a young woman going out and giving his or her life for our country.

Let’s try to somehow keep that sacred. But it eroded a great deal yesterday by the selfish behavior of a member of Congress.

My Analysis of General Kelly’s Remarks

 

History Facts: Media Bias, the Demise of Journalistic Integrity; Rise of the Smear Campaign

History Facts:

Media Bias, the Demise of Journalistic Integrity; Rise of the Smear Campaign

The 2016 Election and the Demise of Journalistic Standards

Hillsdale Imprimis Part 1

Michael Goodwin
The New York Post

I’ve been a journalist for a long time. Long enough to know that it wasn’t always like this. There was a time not so long ago when journalists were trusted and admired. We were generally seen as trying to report the news in a fair and straightforward manner. Today, all that has changed. For that, we can blame the 2016 election or, more accurately, how some news organizations chose to cover it. Among the many firsts, last year’s election gave us the gobsmacking revelation that most of the mainstream media puts both thumbs on the scale—that most of what you read, watch, and listen to is distorted by intentional bias and hostility. I have never seen anything like it. Not even close.

It’s not exactly breaking news that most journalists lean left. I used to do that myself. I grew up at The New York Times, so I’m familiar with the species.

History of Media Bias

For most of the media, bias grew out of the social revolution of the 1960s and ’70s. Fueled by the civil rights and anti-Vietnam War movements, the media jumped on the anti-authority bandwagon writ large. The deal was sealed with Watergate, when journalism was viewed as more trusted than government—and far more exciting and glamorous. Think Robert Redford in All the President’s Men. Ever since, young people became journalists because they wanted to be the next Woodward and Bernstein, find a Deep Throat, and bring down a president. Of course, most of them only wanted to bring down a Republican president. That’s because liberalism is baked into the journalism cake.

Promote Big Government, Not Report Truth

During the years I spent teaching at the Columbia University School of Journalism, I often found myself telling my students that the job of the reporter was “to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.” I’m not even sure where I first heard that line, but it still captures the way most journalists think about what they do.

Habit of thinking: Create Victim Groups

Translate the first part of that compassionate-sounding idea into the daily decisions about what makes news, and it is easy to fall into the habit of thinking that every person afflicted by something is entitled to help. Or, as liberals like to say, “Government is what we do together.” From there, it’s a short drive to the conclusion that every problem has a government solution.

The rest of that journalistic ethos—“afflict the comfortable”—leads to the knee-jerk support of endless taxation. Somebody has to pay for that government intervention the media loves to demand. In the same vein, and for the same reason, the average reporter will support every conceivable regulation as a way to equalize conditions for the poor. He will also give sympathetic coverage to groups like Occupy Wall Street and Black Lives Matter.

A New Dimension

I knew all of this about the media mindset going into the 2016 presidential campaign. But I was still shocked at what happened. This was not naïve liberalism run amok. This was a whole new approach to politics.

 In the beginning, Donald Trump’s candidacy was treated as an outlandish publicity stunt, as though he wasn’t a serious candidate and should be treated as a circus act. But television executives quickly made a surprising discovery: the more they put Trump on the air, the higher their ratings climbed. Ratings are money. So news shows started devoting hours and hours simply to pointing the cameras at Trump and letting them run.

As his rallies grew, the coverage grew, which made for an odd dynamic. The candidate nobody in the media took seriously was attracting the most people to his events and getting the most news coverage. Newspapers got in on the game too. Trump, unlike most of his opponents, was always available to the press, and could be counted on to say something outrageous or controversial that made a headline. He made news by being a spectacle.

Despite the mockery of journalists and late-night comics, something extraordinary was happening. Trump was dominating a campaign none of the smart money thought he could win. And then, suddenly, he was winning. Only when the crowded Republican field began to thin and Trump kept racking up primary and caucus victories did the media’s tone grow more serious.

One study estimated that Trump had received so much free airtime that if he had had to buy it, the price would have been $2 billion.

The realization that they had helped Trump’s rise seemed to make many executives, producers, and journalists furious. By the time he secured the nomination and the general election rolled around, they were gunning for him. Only two people now had a chance to be president, and the overwhelming media consensus was that it could not be Donald Trump. They would make sure of that.

The coverage of him grew so vicious and one-sided that last August I wrote a column on the unprecedented bias. Under the headline “American Journalism Is Collapsing Before Our Eyes,” I wrote that the so-called cream of the media crop was “engaged in a naked display of partisanship” designed to bury Trump and elect Hillary Clinton.

Historic Smear Campaign of a Presidential Candidate

The evidence was on the front page, the back page, the culture pages, even the sports pages. It was at the top of the broadcast and at the bottom of the broadcast. Day in, day out, in every media market in America, Trump was savaged like no other candidate in memory. We were watching the total collapse of standards, with fairness and balance tossed overboard. Every story was an opinion masquerading as news, and every opinion ran in the same direction—toward Clinton and away from Trump.

For the most part, I blame The New York Times and The Washington Post for causing this breakdown. The two leading liberal newspapers were trying to top each other in their demonization of Trump and his supporters. They set the tone, and most of the rest of the media followed like lemmings.

The Presidency as a First Job for an Outsider?

On one level, tougher scrutiny of Trump was clearly defensible. He had a controversial career and lifestyle, and he was seeking the presidency as his first job in government. He also provided lots of fuel with some of his outrageous words and deeds during the campaign.

But from the beginning there was also a second element to the lopsided coverage. The New York Times has not endorsed a Republican for president since Dwight Eisenhower in 1956, meaning it would back a dead raccoon if it had a “D” after its name. Think of it—George McGovern over Richard Nixon? Jimmy Carter over Ronald Reagan? Walter Mondale over Reagan? Any Democrat would do. And The Washington Post, which only started making editorial endorsements in the 1970s, has never once endorsed a Republican for president.

All Pretense of Fairness Dropped

But again, I want to emphasize that 2016 had those predictable elements plus a whole new dimension. This time, the papers dropped the pretense of fairness and jumped headlong into the tank for one candidate over the other. The Times media reporter began a story this way:

If you’re a working journalist and you believe that Donald J. Trump is a demagogue playing to the nation’s worst racist and nationalist tendencies, that he cozies up to anti-American dictators and that he would be dangerous with control of the United States nuclear codes, how the heck are you supposed to cover him? [But it was A-OK for Obama to cozy up to anti-American dictators? ~C.D.]

If you can’t be fair, you shouldn’t cover the candidate—Cover Sports or Entertainment

I read that paragraph and I thought to myself, well, that’s actually an easy question. If you feel that way about Trump, normal journalistic ethics would dictate that you shouldn’t cover him. You cannot be fair. And you shouldn’t be covering Hillary Clinton either, because you’ve already decided who should be president. Go cover sports or entertainment. Yet the Times media reporter rationalized the obvious bias he had just acknowledged, citing the view that Clinton was “normal” and Trump was not.

What happened to fairness? What happened to Journalistic Standards? New York Times Eliminated Them

I found the whole concept appalling. What happened to fairness? What happened to standards? I’ll tell you what happened to them. The Times top editor, Dean Baquet, eliminated them. In an interview last October with the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard, Baquet admitted that the piece by his media reporter had nailed his own thinking. Trump “challenged our language,” he said, and Trump “will have changed journalism.” Of the daily struggle for fairness, Baquet had this to say: “I think that Trump has ended that struggle. . . . We now say stuff. We fact check him. We write it more powerfully that [what he says is] false.”

Baquet was being too modest. Trump was challenging, sure, but it was Baquet who changed journalism. He’s the one who decided that the standards of fairness and nonpartisanship could be abandoned without consequence.

New Formula: Who, What, When, Where, and Why + OPINION

With that decision, Baquet also changed the basic news story formula. To the age-old elements of who, what, when, where, and why, he added the reporter’s opinion. Now the floodgates were open, and virtually every so-called news article reflected a clear bias against Trump. Stories, photos, headlines, placement in the paper—all the tools that writers and editors have—were summoned to the battle. The goal was to pick the next president.

Liberal Lies Never Exposed

Thus began the spate of stories, which continues today, in which the Times routinely calls Trump a liar in its news pages and headlines. Again, the contrast with the past is striking. The Times never called Barack Obama a liar, despite such obvious opportunities as “you can keep your doctor” and “the Benghazi attack was caused by an internet video.”

From Journalistic Integrity to Cheerleading

Indeed, the Times and The Washington Post, along with most of the White House press corps, spent eight years cheerleading the Obama administration, seeing not a smidgen of corruption or dishonesty. They have been tougher on Hillary Clinton during her long career. But they still never called her a liar, despite such doozies as “I set up my own computer server so I would only need one device,” “I turned over all the government emails,” and “I never sent or received classified emails.” All those were lies, but not to the national media. Only statements by Trump were fair game.