No Minister

Posts Tagged ‘MSM bias

Your Brain on Murder – and Covid-19

A year ago, during the insanity of the BLM/Antifa riots across US cities that killed dozens, caused billions of dollars of property damage and screwed up a number of Central Business Districts (CBD’s), I came across a statistic that should not have surprised me but did.

The number of unarmed Black men that the public think are killed by the police in the USA in 2019, broken down by political ideology.

Putting that into an even simpler form:

Very Liberal respondents:

  • 14.29% said ‘about 10,000’
  • 31.43% said ‘about 1,000.’

Liberal respondents:

  • 6.67% saying ‘about 10,000’
  • 26.67% saying ‘about 1,000.’

According to the database at Mapping Police Violence, the number was actually 27 in 2019.

As you can see from the above chart, it’s the Moderate, Conservative and Very Conservative thinkers who have a much better grip on reality in this case.

Is it any wonder that these “Liberal” and “Very Liberal” people were all in on the BLM violence in 2020. I suppose you can at least say they’re genuine in their rage.

But then I ran across the same gap between reality and human minds on another issue, Covid-19, this one from a Gallup poll and splitting only by US political affiliation (Democrat, Independent, Republican):

Again making it even simpler, the percentages of those groups who think that the unvaccinated have a 50% chance of being hospitalized because of COVID:

  • 41% of Democrats believe that
  • 26% of Independents believe that
  • 22% of Republicans believe that.

The correct answer: Fewer than 1% of unvaccinated people infected with COVID will have to go to the hospital.

The good news, sort of, is that at least all three groups had a near majority thinking that the chances of vaccinated people being hospitalised is less than one percent, which is the correct answer for the USA:

The hospitalization rate for both vaccinated and unvaccinated COVID patients is under 1%:

  • The hospitalization rate for vaccinated COVID patients is 0.01%, or 1 out of every 10,914 patients
  • The hospitalization rate for unvaccinated COVID patients is 0.89%, or 1 out of 112 patients.

While it’s easy to be snide about the political and ideological mindsets that lead to such conclusions, if we like to think that most people, maybe more than 50%, are intelligent and rational enough to accept factual data – and god help me I want so much to believe that – then the fault for these massive differences from reality must lie with our MSM, Social Media and governments, who have such great influence in telling people what’s going on.

Written by Tom Hunter

November 7, 2021 at 6:46 pm

No MSM news is good news

I don’t know why people continue to be surprised by the following revelations but they are:

I&I/TIPP Poll: Trust In Media Is In Free Fall

According to a recent survey conducted by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at Oxford, among 92,000 news consumers in 46 countries, the United States ranked last in terms of media trust at 29%.  Finland received the highest level of trust in the study, at 65%. The United States performed worse than Poland, the Philippines, and Peru.

Regrettably New Zealand is not in that survey, but I would think that we have worse results than Australia because they do at least have some rightish MSM, as this recent SKY News coverage of Biden shows.

One interesting aspect of this latest survey is that they looked at both the “traditional” and “alternative” MSM. Here are the US results:

Generally speaking, how much trust do you have in the traditional or established news media (Example: Washington Post, New York Times, NPR, CBS News, etc.) to report the news accurately and fairly?

 Generally speaking, how much trust do you have in the alternative news media (Example: New York Post, Washington Times, NewsMax, The Daily Caller, RealClearPolitics, etc.) to report the news accurately and fairly?

There’s a lot more detail at both the first link, and it’s sub-links, but I fear they are in lala land when it comes to their optimism about the media regaining all this lost trust. That could be done but only if there was a dramatic transformation in the way modern reporters approach a story, which is that a Narrative must first be crafted for the article, just like a storybook, after which facts and edited interviews and quotes from “experts” and whatever else is needed to support that storybook are included – and anything that does not or conflicts with the story is excluded. “Editorial choice” also covers a wide range of sins.

There are some who just cannot stomach it anymore, like Ole Skambraks, who worked as an editorial assistant and editor at the German public broadcaster ARD for 12 years. His particular issue is around the coverage of the Covid-19 pandemic in the last two years, but what he says could apply to any story covered in the last twenty or thirty years:

Scientists and experts who were respected and esteemed before Covid, who were given space in public discourse, are suddenly labelled cranks, tinfoil hat wearers or Covidiots. As an oft-cited example, consider Wolfgang Wodarg, a medical specialist in several fields, an epidemiologist and a long-time health politician. Until the Covid crisis, he was also on the board of Transparency International. In 2010, as Chair of the Council of Europe Health Committee, he exposed the influence of the pharmaceutical industry in the swine flu pandemic. At that time, he was granted the opportunity to express his opinion on public service broadcasting, but in times of Covid this is no longer possible. His voice has been replaced by that of so-called fact-checkers, who seek to discredit him.

Instead of an open exchange of opinions, a “scientific consensus” was proclaimed, that must be defended. Anyone who doubts this and demands a multidimensional perspective on the pandemic, will reap indignation and scorn.

In this context, it is less revealing which topics are being discussed in public service media, than what is not being discussed.

TPTB and their many lackeys are of course perfectly happy with this. But read his whole article, which is basically a list of questions that should have been asked if the MSM was actually useful.

You should also read this latest article in The Tablet, Why Don’t They Believe Us? which covers much of the same material I have here on No Minister. Even Kiwiblog has a post on it, which I guess means the “Moderate Right” has detected a change in the winds – or perhaps a stench.

The same people who told you Brexit would never happen, that Trump would never win, that when he did win it was because of Russian collusion but also because of racism, that you must follow lockdowns while they don’t, that masks don’t work, that masks do work, that social justice protests during pandemic lockdowns are a form of “health intervention,” that ransacking African American communities in the name of fighting racism is a “mostly peaceful” form of protest, that poor and underserved children locked out of shuttered schools are “still learning,” that Jussie Smollett was a victim of a hate crime, that men are toxic, that there is an infinite number of genders, that COVID couldn’t have come from a lab until maybe it did, that closing borders is racist until maybe it isn’t, that you shouldn’t take Trump’s vaccine, that you must take the vaccine developed during the Trump administration, that Andrew Cuomo is a great leader, that Andrew Cuomo is a granny killer, that the number of COVID deaths is one thing and then another … are the same people telling you now that the vaccine is safe, that you must take it, and that if you don’t, you will be a second-class citizen.

Fuck these people. Let them burn. In fact fuck the idiots who read and watched this and believed all of it, some of them even now.

Written by Tom Hunter

November 3, 2021 at 2:38 pm

A tired old man

“I’ am a tired man”, US President Abraham Lincoln once confessed to a friend, “Sometimes I think I’m the tiredest man on earth”.

But he said that in 1865 and had every reason to feel that way after four years of leading the nation through the most brutal war in its history and then facing the prospect of trying to pull it together again when the bitter conflict ended and 600,000 bodies lay in the ground.

By contrast the only reason the current POTUS is tired is that he’s an old man placed in a job he is simply not capable of performing, and never was.

Painful to watch. Xi Jinping, Putin and a host of others are watching this and know they have three more years to make their moves.

Having said that I couldn’t blame Biden for the following; I’d have fallen asleep as well listening to all these hypocrites droning on about a Climate Catastrophe their many actions demonstrate they don’t believe in:

“Appears”? No, this is not like the meeting with Boris Johnson a couple of months ago where the “Fact Checkers” of the MSM made excuses about how Biden had just briefly closed his eyes while Johnson spoke. No, in this case Biden most definitely fell asleep for almost a minute before some aide comes to wake him up before the nanna-nap becomes too deep.

The MSM will cover for him as best they can, as they have done for two years now, but if you want a more precise example of the double standards just recall this response to a Trump official’s comment all the way back in 2017:

“When you are trying to convince America that its new leader is not a fascist,” New York Magazine’s Margaret Hartmann and Chas Danner suggested recently, “it’s best not to make any Mussolini references.”

Too late. That advice was directed at former Cincinnati mayor Ken Blackwell, a member of the Trump transition team. Blackwell just assured the Wall Street Journal that Reince Preibus, the RNC chair picked as White House chief of staff, would “utilize his personal connections with the speaker [Rep. Paul Ryan] and others, to make the trains run on time.”

Message received! It’s not a good look for the Trump Administration to make references to Mussolini. You know what might be worse? Doing it in the country Mussolini called home:

I doubt we’ll see any pearl clutching from the likes of New York magazine’s Margaret Hartman and Chas Danner about this Biden line.

Written by Tom Hunter

November 3, 2021 at 8:21 am

Bad news for White Supremacists

You know that little symbol you’ve been using to communicate with eachother as a symbol of White Power?

The symbol that the Democrats, the US Left and the MSM (but I repeat myself), all went apeshit about after Trump became President?

This sign =>

Well, bad news haters. It turns out that’s wrong. We know this now, not just because President Biden used it in his poorly viewed train wreck of a “Town hall” meeting on CNN the other night,…

… but also because people who tried to claim he was flashing the WP sign have been…. fact checked! By none other than Politifact!

This started when Twitter account called “Libs of Tik Tok” – who specialise in having fun with earnest US “Liberals” – tweeted the following: bonus points to them for using the Internet meme, “literally shaking”.

Given that we live in a world where the satirical site, Babylon Bee, has found itself being “fact-checked” as a result of dealing with clueless journalists, the following should not have been a surprise, yet it still was:

Wow! Thanks for that “Fact-checkers”. Without you, clueless morons might have thought that was a real accusation. However, they did do one good thing, which was to provide some background to the nonsense of how the traditional “Okay” sign ended up being a White Power symbol.

First, a word of caution about interpreting that gesture as a white power gesture. According to the Anti-Defamation League, in 2017, members of the website 4chan falsely claimed that it represented the letters “WP” for “white power.”

“The hoaxers hoped that the media and liberals would overreact by condemning a common image as white supremacist,” the Anti-Defamation League says in this article explaining the gesture.

Hoped? That’s exactly what the dumbfucks of the US MSM and “liberals” did do – to the utter delight of the 4chan gang, who do such things on a regular basis to demonstrate how screwed up the MSM-Liberal alliance is. Why it’s as if they and the ADL don’t even know they’re being played.

While overwhelmingly people use the gesture to signify assent or approval, “as well as other usages unrelated to white supremacy,” the league says, it has also been used as a sincere expression of white supremacy.

In this case, however, the context makes clear that Biden is using the gesture to illustrate the number zero, as in how many cents he said some corporations pay in taxes.

Oh! So now “context matters.” Fantastic. It just so happens that context suddenly “matters” when a Democrat does it. Context didn’t matter for the last few years when Republican politicians, activists and even ordinary, random dudes on TV flashed it and got attacked, smeared, and in some cases canceled by online outrage mobs.

You only have to imagine the response had Trump done this. The irony is that Biden was quite happy in his early 70’s Senate career to pal around with Democrat Senators who were outright segregationists and White Supremacists.

The random online FaceTwit mobs are bad enough, but once again we see that the MSM “fact checkers” could not be more transparent in their Lefty and partisan bias.

Written by Tom Hunter

October 25, 2021 at 2:33 pm

Die MSM, Die – Changing Covid Narratives

Over the last two months it seems that the US MSM has been gleefully talking up the caseloads and death tolls from a recent Covid-19 surge in the Southern US states, especially Texas and Florida.

It isn’t too hard to guess that this was done because those states are run by Republicans, in keeping with the politicisation of this supposedly medical and scientific problem. No, the narrative was that since these states were packed with stump-toothed, gun-totin’, MAGA-hat wearing Trumpers who are “vaccine hesitant”, it was not a surprise that Covid was surging through such moronic populations. The only regret seems to have been that not enough were subsequently dying, but that’s Delta for you.

For those of us who have been following the progress of this virus over the last eighteen months it seemed more likely that the reason was that in the summer months the population of such states retreats indoors to an AC environment. Respiratory viruses love that, so as Fall approached and temperatures and humidity dropped, Southerners would get outside more, while Northerners would start to be the ones who retreated indoors, and a Covid-19 Delta surge would happen in the latter states.

Voila:

The New England region has been hit by this third wave of the virus:

According to statistics from The Associated Press, the five states with the highest percentage of a fully vaccinated population are all in New England, with Vermont leading, followed by Connecticut, Maine, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. New Hampshire is 10th.

According to the AP data, full vaccination rates across the six New England states range from a high of 69.4% in Vermont to 61.5% in New Hampshire.

Maine is having a surge in COVID-related hospitalisations despite 84% of everyone over 12, 85.3% of everyone over 18, and 98.4% of everyone over 65 being at least partially vaccinated.

But aside from the actual news is the way the MSM is reporting it, using two of their time-tested strategies:

  1. Stop covering the news when it’s good for the Republicans.
  2. Stop assigning political blame when the news is bad for Democrats.

An example of the first strategy: Media stops covering FL COVID data:

Why is it that you are not hearing about the Florida COVID caseload so much anymore? We were here talking to you about it in July because the media was convinced Ron DeSantis… ‘doesn’t care about old people or children dying of COVID”

“[Florida] didn’t implement a mask mandate, didn’t do COVID passports and the cases still went down,” said Travis, after Sexton referenced a 50% decline in COVID cases across the Sunshine State in the past 2 weeks.

The second strategy shows up with these examples of MSM coverage of this surge in the NE states:

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS – There are constant reminders for most New England states of just how vicious the delta variant of COVID-19 is.
  • YAHOO NEWS – Cases are still climbing and hospitals have been pushed to the brink in some states as the highly contagious Delta variant continues to spread.
  • BOSTON HERALD – Infections have been higher amid the more highly contagious delta variant.

By contrast to the reporting on Florida and Texas, in none of these reports do we see blame for this new outbreak being leveled at politicians and their COVID policies. It’s all attributed to the vicious nature of a particularly contagious strain alone. 

This current surge in the Northeast screws the MSM talking points, because this sector of the country has long been held up as an example of forthright behavior regarding the pandemic. Yet, despite all claims and lectures, they are experiencing the same type of surge seen in states across the country. But the MSM cannot demonize those voters, they can’t attribute the problem to vaccine resistance, and they can’t blame things on political decisions, because on every factor they’re the side the MSM has taken – the Democrat and Left-wing side.

As a result, in just one month, there has been a turnaround as “reckless” GOP leadership and policies are pushed aside and the nefarious nature of the Delta variant rises to the top of the responsibility reports. BTW, at the same time, those GOP states with better numbers than earlier are forgotten in the coverage.

Readers might like to inform me whether this trend has been seen in the NZ MSM? I’d be willing to bet the same thing was seen here in reporting on the USA.

Written by Tom Hunter

October 11, 2021 at 2:29 pm

Right on the money

Courtesy of the Bassett, Brash & Hide blog.

Were this to ever be published in the NZ Herald or Stuff, their businesses would likely be burned to the ground.

Fortunately that’s what’s going to happen when the government money spigot is eventually turned off.

Written by Tom Hunter

September 18, 2021 at 6:00 am

Die MSM, Die – A Public Service to National

Readers will be well aware that I have very little time for the National party nowadays, having voted for them for about twenty years.

However, I have some sympathy for their struggles with a bought-and-paid-for MSM in New Zealand, which apparently extends to an endless character assassination campaign by cartoonists on the National leader, Judith Collins. I don’t have much time for her either but if those cartoonists had any sense of decency they’d hurl at least a few scathing caricatures at Jacinda Adern. God knows there’s enough material.

However the latest piece of news on this front is a new low, with National MP Chris Bishop:

Here is an opinion piece which I pitched to Stuff and the NZ Herald. Neither decided it was worth publishing. At a time when the PM commands the airwaves on a daily basis at 1pm, it’s important for the National Opposition voice to be heard and for constructive criticism of the government.

Ok. Fuck the MSM and their bullshit bias. If Social media, and especially blogs, are still to mean anything in this environment I think we owe it to readers to publish his piece, How Did We Get Here:

Lockdowns are incredibly expensive: it has been estimated a countrywide Level 4 lockdown costs the economy around $1.5 billion per week. That’s before you count the social cost: kids not at school, families split apart, the mental health impacts of being cooped up at home for days on end. I think almost everyone thinks we should be doing all we can to avoid them.

Sadly, it’s become clear in the government’s response to the recent delta outbreak that while Kiwis have done all they’ve been asked to do – the government hasn’t been playing its part. The “team of five million” has been let down.

Two things have become clear. First, we had no alternative but to lockdown because of our woefully low vaccination rates. Second, despite claims to the contrary, the government had done very little planning at all around how to respond to a further outbreak, particularly of delta, since the first COVID lockdown last year.

It gives me no pleasure as the Opposition spokesperson for COVID-19 to say that New Zealand’s vaccination rates, by world standards, are hopeless. For most of this year we had the world’s slowest vaccine roll-out. Chris Hipkins said at the end of 2020 we would be “at the front of the queue” but the reality is we are at the back of the pack. This is not the “year of the vaccine” we were promised by the Prime Minister.

The vaccines are safe, they work, and the data is very clear: the higher our vaccination rates, the less need there is of lockdowns. Every single person that goes and gets vaccinated brings us closer to freedom: freedom from lockdowns, and freedom to travel. That’s why the government’s ineptitude over vaccine supply matters. The government simply failed in its most important job: to get a supply of vaccines as early as possible and make sure as many people were vaccinated as possible as early as possible.

The government’s incompetence is astonishing. We were one of the last developed countries to sign contracts with vaccine manufacturers in 2020. We were then slow to approve the Pfizer vaccine. Hundreds of millions of jabs had been given by the time we approved it. We were then slow to actually order our doses, not doing it until January 29 this year. And we didn’t even bother to ask Pfizer if we could pay more to get earlier delivery of the vaccines, as other countries did. Compare the cost of paying a bit more to the cost of lockdowns, and do the maths. It’s a no brainer.

Incredibly, the government has claimed at various points it would be “unethical” or immoral to have a faster vaccine roll-out, because other countries need the vaccines more than we do. Leaving aside the internal inconsistency in this argument (other countries need them now too, but you don’t see the government giving ours up do you?), the New Zealand government’s first responsibility is to the people of New Zealand – and that means rolling out the vaccine as quick as they could. They failed.

The second failure by the government is their failure to plan for delta. The Prime Minister claimed on television this morning that delta only emerged in MIQ in June. That is completely incorrect. The first case of delta turned up in early April in MIQ and it has been raging across the world for most of this year. The government has sat ensconced behind the barriers of Fortress New Zealand and smugly looked at Australia, but they weren’t doing the work behind the scenes to prepare for when delta turned up here.

A smart government would have done an audit of all our MIQ facilities in light of delta to make sure infection control practices were up to scratch. Instead, a public walkway was allowed to share the same air as an exercise yard at the Crowne Plaza in Auckland and there was a vaccination centre right next to the Crowne Plaza. COVID positive people are still allowed to exercise in an underground car park in Wellington. Only now is the government reviewing MIQ facilities in light of delta.

A smart government would have had a plan in place for more quarantine facilities beyond the Jet Park. Instead the government had to scramble to get more quarantine facilities going like the Novotel Ellerslie – and then a COVID positive man escaped from it, putting us all at risk. It has taken over 24 hours to move many people from the community into quarantine after testing positive for COVID-19, because the coordination plan between health officials and MIQ wasn’t in place.

Some of our current problems date back to the response to the first outbreak last year. Contract tracing has been an ever-present issue. There have been four expert reviews of contact tracing since April 2020. All have found it wanting but little has been done by the government. In this outbreak, it took six days for the government to second public servants from other departments to start contract tracing. By its own admission the government will fail to meet the contact tracing target metrics designed by Dr Ayesha Verrall, ironically enough now Associate Minister of Health. In this latest outbreak there are still 5000 contacts who have not even had a single phone call from a contact tracer!

A smart government would have had a plan in place around testing. Other countries use saliva tests and rapid antigen tests that return results in 15 minutes. Speed of testing with delta is critical, because the virus moves so far. But the government insists on using expensive and time consuming nasal PCR tests as our main testing technique. The result has been people who are told to get tested waiting 10-12 hours for a test or giving up and going home – or even worse, not even bothering. We should be using saliva testing much more widely – recommended to the government a year ago – as well as rapid antigen tests. Incredibly, these tests are banned in New Zealand.

There’s more I could mention. The failure to use Bluetooth tracing even though we’ve all been told for months to turn it on. The refusal to build purpose-built quarantine. The lack of preparation in our hospitals for a delta outbreak – no new ICU bed spaces have been provisioned over the five months.

The government borrowed $62 billion last year on the COVID Response Fund.  Did they spend this on contact tracing, testing capacity, and extra ICU capacity? That would have been sensible. Instead it was used as a slush fund. Instead the fund was spent on art therapy clinics, cameras on fishing boats, horse racing, public interest journalism, and school lunches. Yes, I’m serious.

Auckland is in lockdown – again – because the government failed to vaccinate quickly enough and the government failed to plan for delta.

I should add the usual blog disclaimer that simply because I have published this piece does not mean that I agree with all of it. In fact it’s the usual National angle of agreeing with what Labor does but with the promise to do it better. Hence the talk of superior control of people with Bluetooth tracing and purpose-built MIQ camps – but with no mention of getting after proven treatments like monoclonal antibodies for people who do catch the virus, presumably because just talking about such treatments might further damage an already slow vaccine rollout.

Written by Tom Hunter

September 15, 2021 at 12:17 pm

Die MSM, Die – NZ Siouxsie Wiles edition (updated)

I’m going to put this post up even though I have absolutely no faith that it will have any effect on the likes of TV1 or the rest of the NZ media.

They are who I’ve always known them to be. Shills for the Left in general and now, with $105 million of government money in their pockets, whores for the Labour government.

However, since it is a blog that broke this story, and since I’ve always argued that blogs are needed as a counter to the MSM, this is worth supporting.

The story belongs to Cameron Slater at his blog, the BFD, New Zealander of the Year Siouxsie Wiles – Unmasked:

Please don’t go out and chat with a friend while you are out, Wiles said.

Don’t hang around and have a chat, connect in other ways. We’ve got phones, we’ve got Skype, we’ve got Zoom…we need to physically disconnect for a little while,” she said.

Stay away from people.

RNZ 18 August 2021

There’s more detail at the link about all the roles that Wiles has in advising the PM and her apparently huge media profile (never have I been more glad to be ignoring all this). Suffice to say that it sounds very similar to the case last year of British epidemiologist Neil “500,000 UK deaths” Ferguson, who got caught breaking his own lockdown rules by having his mistress cross London for regular bonking sessions. Something recently repeated by the UK Health Minister.

I expect these people to be hypocrites with double standards and rules-for-thee-but-not-for-me. In the USA last year Dr Fauci was caught at a baseball game yukking it up in close proximity with friends while a mask merely dangled off his ear. Beloved US Lefty icon politician, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, was found putting a mask on for a group photo and then completely removing it as soon as the TV cameras were off. There was also California Governor Newsom’s maskless soiree at The French Laundry and Nancy Pelosi’s Napa Valley gathering of Democrat big wigs sans masks – aside from the waiters and the other little people servicing them of course.

So it goes with The Ruling Classes.

But at least in the case of Ferguson the British MSM had no hesitation in breaking the story. In NZ it’s different:

You may be wondering why it is The BFD that is making this public. The simple reason is that we are not part of the Prime Minister’s Team of $55 million. This story was given to 1News journalist Benedict Collins. After sitting on the story for five days he informed my source that they had spiked the story. The reason given was that it wasn’t a politician so there was no public interest in the story. Make no mistake, this story was suppressed by an editor at 1News.

As David Farrer says at his Kiwiblog link to this story:

If the person concerned with say an obscure ACT List MP (ie someone with no real power or influence), you can bet that TVNZ and all other mainstream media would be running this for days on end as a major story. But instead, they all ignore it.

Sure, David, sure. But do you expect them to change as a result of stories like this? DPF constantly links to them, providing them oxygen even as they die. There’s nothing to be done about the private sector MSM but the least a future National government can do is defund TV1, RNZ and NZ On Air. I assume that even Labour’s bribes will come to an end this year so we’ll see how many are left standing by 2023.

These people are not journalists. They’re Labour and Green Party operatives with bylines.

UPDATE

Ha ha. The other party has been identified. She’s Nicola Gaston, an associate professor at Auckland University. She’s been very outspoken about the need for hard lockdowns and that rules must be followed strictly.

She’s also a frequent contributor to NZ’s 21st century answer to The Listener, The Spinoff. Because of course she is.

These fucking people really do have it good in their insulated, self-protecting worlds where they get to tell everybody else how to live their lives with no consequences for themselves.

Written by Tom Hunter

September 10, 2021 at 12:06 pm

As you stare into the vacuum of their eyes

As a follow-up to my post the other day about the infamous and discredited “Fact Checking” industry, herewith a story about yet another stain on their media hand maidens. These things happen so frequently one can’t keep up so it’s really a matter of picking the most prominent.

The magazine Rolling Stone had a proud history from its start in the late 1960’s covering the rapidly groth industry of rock music. Over the decades it produced a lot of interesting stuff: interviews with musicians and other artists, reviews of albums. It even made some good forays into politics.

While the rest of the MSM has been crushed in revenues by things like Craigslist, followed by Google and Facebook, specialist magazines have been punished by the Internet in different ways. In the case of Rolling Stone, two specific ways.

First of all, music listeners of all ages no longer wait for such places to review albums and singles. As those hit the likes of iTunes and Spotify they’re instantly blasted around the world to billions of people who make up their own minds as to whether they were “good” (not listening to “experts”, shocking I know). Even if you want to analyze why a song is brilliant there are people on the Internet who can do that analysis far more brilliantly (see Rick Beato in Two Artists and two works of Art).

Second, the stars themselves could reach their fans directly and in ways far more immediate and intimate than could be obtained in stuffy old interviews. Neither group really needed Rolling Stone any more.

As a result, the magazine has degenerated in the same way that the rest of the MSM industry has; the shallow, slimey world of click-bait, Left-Wing ideology pushed harder than ever, and partisan political hackery.

I thought they had reached bottom a few years ago when they ran a huge cover story about a gang rape at a university that turned out to be a complete hoax. But they managed to go lower than that when they put a full-face picture of one of the Boston Marathon bombers on the cover: just like a rock star.

By comparison the hit job they tried the other day doesn’t seem so bad. There’s been quite the debate about whether a product called Ivermectin can be used to treat patients suffering from Chinese Xi Snot virus. It’s used to de-worm horses but has long been approved for the same function in humans. It’s about 50 years old and its inventor won a Nobel Prize for it.

Whether it’s any good against the symptoms of this virus I don’t know, but certainly those groups pushing vaccination (including mandatory vaccination) are very much against it. They don’t appear too keen on pushing other treatments like monoclonal antibodies either, despite that having medically documented success in treating Covid-19 patients.

But if you’re against the use of Ivermectin then you pull out the emotional big guns of the debate: that you’re killing more deserving people because you’re a pig-ignorant moron who OD’d on it and and thus deprived them of hospital beds. Even (gasp) gunshot victims (fall to knees, wring hands, wail loudly until you guilt your way to forcing others to do as you say).

The problem with their heart-wrenching, shroud-waving story was that it was bullshit, as would have been revealed by a few phone calls to the hospital.

While not as bad as the rape story and Boston Bomber stuff it is still another example of how shoddy “journalism” is nowadays. All the good ones are moving to Substack (“A place for independent writing”).

Oh, and remember that it was a medical doctor who started and went with these lies. A sort of lessor Dr Fauci.

For fun, here’s the Babylon Bee.

Written by Tom Hunter

September 6, 2021 at 12:33 pm

Die MSM, Die – YOU have been fact checked

As the MSM and journalists in general have lost the trust of large chunks of the Western populations, a new scam has arisen.

Fact checkers.

These people would supposedly do quick and easy rebuttals – typically on Twitter and Facebook, which reward brevity – of things being said by public figures, starting with politicians. You could trust fact checkers because they weren’t journalists and they were not partisans.

Except they were, but you wouldn’t know that unless you investigated their backgrounds and the stories they had written in the past.

It took several years but gradually people have caught up to these scam artists. Recently their flaws have become a bit of a flood. Snopes founder, David Mikkelson getting done for “pervasive fraud” and plagiarism. Then the Washington Post’s “fact checker” Glenn Kessler got caught out playing dirty with right-wing journalist Christopher Rufo because his reporting on Critical Race Theory was starting to hurt the US Left. Kessler implied that Rufo had faked a source and stolen original material from one Karlyn Borysenko, and emailed her on that. Luckily she was honest and slammed Kessler hard by making the exchange public.

But he did suggest that Rufo was lying about knowing that person in a gross attempt to garner dirt when none existed. This is how the news media operates. They go into a story with a pre-determined outcome in mind, in this case, that Rufo lied and therefore can’t be trusted as an opponent of CRT. They then fish around for comments to take out of context to place in their article to make it seem factual.

Kessler was not fact-checking here. Instead, he had already decided what he thought Rufo had done and he was searching for someone to provide a money quote to back him up. He was foiled this time and got completely exposed for the hack he is, but imagine how many times he hasn’t been exposed while doing this same thing to other people

But the best one yet happened just the other day after Biden was seen checking his watch while at Dover AFB as the bodies of thirteen US soldiers were delivered from Afghanistan, where they had been killed by an ISIS suicide bombing attack. The USA Today “fact checker” decided to plunge in on this rather minor story that made Biden look bad.

 

His claim was that it only happened once and only after the dignified transfer was over. As fact-checks go, that write-up wasn’t unusual, being filled with the sort of unearned arrogance, obfuscation and sophistry that is standard for the fact-checking industry. He even challenged people to “watch the video for yourself.

Unfortunately for him, people did, and what they saw was Biden doing this not once but multiple times as the caskets went past, which led to something remarkable happening on his USA Today “Fact Check” section.

Missing context? Fuck you USA Today. Funke’s fact-check, which literally was written to check the facts, got the facts completely wrong in a failed attempt to dunk on Republicans for pointing out Biden checked his watch many times. Much of the article itself has been rewritten as well.

As journalist Jim Treacher (no friend of Trump I need to add, as usual) commented:

This is better, but it’s still a lie. The story was “updated” to note the incontrovertible truth that the piece was originally intended to obfuscate, but the “correction” still claims there’s “missing context.” Like what? There’s no missing context. Biden was checking his damn watch as the coffins went by. It’s a simple fact.

The only “context” is that Biden embarrassed himself, his party, and his country. He’s a bad president and an even worse human being.

If the press will lie about something as easy to verify as news footage of a man checking his watch, what won’t they lie about? They’ll even insult Gold Star families at a funeral, just to protect the man whose ineptitude and dishonesty killed those Marines.

The press will say anything they need to say to help their political party hold onto power. They don’t care about the truth, and they don’t care about you.

This wasn’t a fact-check. It’s some Democrats with bylines doing damage control for the Democrat president.

The fact-checking industry is a joke. The only reason it exists is to serve as a facade for partisan hacks to appear as if they operate from a place of authority. These people are not really journalists, not non-partisan, and they sure as hell are not holding powerful people to account. No, they’re just more media lapdogs for the Left, ready to gum the ankles of anyone who attacks Biden, even if it’s for nothing more than making fun of the imbecilic (H/T Tony Blair), senile old prick.

As Treacher noted some years ago:

That’s more true today than it was in 2014.

Written by Tom Hunter

September 4, 2021 at 5:30 pm

Posted in MSM, US Politics, USA

Tagged with , ,