Did everyone have a nice day?
1. On the Sinclair broadcasting controversy. I was completely unaware of this, and Sinclair itself, until a couple of jerks accused me of cribbing my criticism of mainstream media bias from the company’s supposedly outrageous public statement. For the record, I don’t appeal to authority, and I make my own arguments. If other entities or pundits happen to reach the same conclusions, that’s to their credit. Go accuse them of following me. When a particular position stated by someone else strikes me as persuasive, I’ll credit the source.
Here is the script that Sinclair required the news anchors of its many local stations across the country. To save time, I’ll interject in BOLD…
“Hi, I’m(A) ____________, and I’m (B) _________________…
(B) Our greatest responsibility is to serve our communities. We are extremely proud of the quality, balanced journalism that XXXX News produces.
(A) But we’re concerned about the troubling trend of irresponsible, one-sided news stories plaguing our country. The sharing of biased and false news has become all too common on social media.
True. There is no denying this, and while the left-wing news media denies it as part of refusing to reform and do its job objectively and responsibly, the fact that the entity correctly framing the reality of U.S. journalism today is a conservative one does not alter the truth. Any news organization could have, and should have, sponsored the same statement.
(B) More alarming, some media outlets publish these same fake stories… stories that just aren’t true, without checking facts first.
This is also undeniable. The truth hurts. Tough.
(A) Unfortunately, some members of the media use their platforms to push their own personal bias and agenda to control ‘exactly what people think’…This is extremely dangerous to a democracy.
Completely accurate. It is terribly dangerous, and for a recent egregious example, look no further than the coverage of the anti-gun movement following the Parkland shooting.
(B) At XXXX it’s our responsibility to pursue and report the truth. We understand Truth is neither politically ‘left nor right.’ Our commitment to factual reporting is the foundation of our credibility, now more than ever.
If Sinclair means this, good. And that is the standard it should be held to going forward.
(A) But we are human and sometimes our reporting might fall short. If you believe our coverage is unfair please reach out to us by going to XXXX News.com and clicking on CONTENT CONCERNS. We value your comments. We will respond back to you.
How can anyone object to this?
(B) We work very hard to seek the truth and strive to be fair, balanced and factual… We consider it our honor, our privilege to responsibly deliver the news every day.
(A) Thank you for watching and we appreciate your feedback”
Since the statement is non-partisan, accurate, much-needed and one that every single news broadcast news source could and should have read to its viewers, daily if possible, there can be no valid ethical objections to it.
Deadspin, which has too many ethics problems of its own to count, attacked the statement as america’s largest local TV owner turning its news anchors into soldiers in Trump’s war on the media.”
What utter dishonesty! As I said, and documented on the space ad nauseum, it cannot be reasonably denied that the statement’s characterization of news reporting is fair and accurate. Just because the resistances’s reviled President says something is so doesn’t mean it isn’t so, nor does his embrace of the obvious mean that to acknowledge the obvious is to support him. Deadspin then assembled a propaganda video of anchors across the nation saying the same thing, to make the process look sinister. Clever, but if you can’t see this for the misleading sliming it is, get help. (Or, if you are NPR, get private funding.) Anyone could do the same thing with every baseball broadcaster who reads the MLB script about who owns the material in the broadcast. Anyone could do the same thing with the instructions I and many other CLE trainers read at the beginning of webinar. It can be done with the Pledge of Allegiance. Statements are scripted when it is important to have a carefully considered message communicated without variation. There is absolutely nothing improper, unethical or inappropriate about a stations owner requiring newsreaders to state the station’s mission, philosophy and basic ethical principles.
In fact, it is inappropriate not to. The howls from the Left are the very embodiment of the meaning behind the Bard’s famous line in “Hamlet” (Act 3, Scene 2 ),
The lady doth protest too much, methinks.
Except in this case, it would be, “The biased and partisan journalists who have been manipulating, hiding and distorting the news for years and hate being called on it doth protest too much.”
2. Another dumb “pay gap” controversy. I’m late slapping this one down. “The Crown, ” the Netflix series about Queen Elizabeth II, has been attacked by feminists, progressives and idiots—I’m sorry, but this is egregious—because actress Claire Foy, playing the Queen, was paid considerably less than co-star Matt Smith, who plays Prince Phillip.
The reason this was the case is that Foy, when she was cast, was a relative unknown, Smith, in contrast, had a ready-made fan base as one of the popular Doctors in “Doctor Who.” Thus he was worth more money to the producers in the beginning of the project. Marlon Brandon was paid much more than Al Pacino and James Caan in “The Godfather” for the same reason. This isn’t gender discrimination. This is business, specifically show business. Bigger stars get more money for legitimate and obvious artistic and business reasons. Now there is a petition to try to shame Smith into donating part of his salary from the series to Time’s Up.
This nonsense and gender-bullying. I needs to be sneered at and dismissed hard.
3. Damned if he does, damned if he doesn’t. This baseball’s true opening day for me: Fenway’s official first game for the Boston Red Sox. Traditionally, U.S. Presidents have thrown out the first ball when there has been a team in Washington, D.C. It is a nice national moment when it happens, and when, and this is key, at least half the country isn’t behaving like children and assholes, and are prepared to treat the office with respect for just a moment in time. Half the nation is behaving like children and assholes, however, and have been since the 2016 election.
Incredibly, the Washington Post is pretending this isn’t the case, and attacking the President for declining the Washington Nationals invitation to do the honors:
“Why, then, has Trump refused to appear at the Washington Nationals opener, even after the World Champion Houston Astros to the White House last month? The answer is clear: Throwing out the first pitch does not fit into his political agenda. It does not offer him any tangible benefits. The president has shown that unless an event benefits him personally, he has little interest in it.
The Opening Day ceremony, by contrast, symbolizes national unity, which Trump has avoided since the beginning of his campaign. In Trump’s America, sports reflect the debates on Fox News and CNN, a fractured country polarized by the president’s Twitter account. Outside golf, where the president privately socializes with friends and corporate elites, the president’s main interest in spectator sports is promoting a form of “stadium-based patriotism” where Americans must demonstrate their loyalty to country by saluting the troops and singing “God Bless America.” Of course, if he attended a Nationals game, he would find that these rituals are promoted at the ballpark, too.”
Boy, you can’t get much more intellectually dishonest than this. Gee, why wouldn’t the President subject himself to loud, open-air jeering from the majority of a crowd of 40,000, a demonstration of contempt that would be played over and over on CNN, MSNBC, NBC, CBS and ABC, with mocking commentary? What a puzzlement! I have no theories, do you?
President Herbert Hoover, the one time he went to throw out the season’s first ball, was booed mercilessly, and the insult became one of the most related events in his term in office. Boy, I cannot imagine why President Trump wouldn’t be eager to walk into this trap.
The dishonest authors of the Post article,
They want to see the President embarrassed, and are disappointed that he isn’t so foolish as to allow himself to be Hoovered.
4. Fake news, one way or the other: Drudge this AM told us that Trump’s approval poll numbers had “soared” to 51%, his all-time high. At the same time, The Hill informed readers that “Trump approval drops to record low.”
This is what modern journalism has become, and why it is no longer trusted.