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The Enemy of the People

August 21, 2018

Apparently, it’s OK for the media to attack President Trump, but not for President Trump to attack the media.

That’s the conclusion easily drawn from the recent editorial snit by The Boston Globe, which in a journalistic “Kumbaya” convinced 400 newspapers to join in a gang shellacking of President Trump for accusing the media of being “the enemy of the people.” It is Trump who is the true enemy of the people, if we’re to believe what they published.

The Globe’s editorial — pompous, self-serving and pretentious — calls President Trump a liar and a charlatan, implies that he’s a tax cheat and notes that his “suspicious pattern of behavior” triggered an investigation by an independent counsel … who, by the way, has turned up virtually nothing despite an investigation that’s lasted more than 15 months.

It even seeks to compare President Trump with “21st-century authoritarians like Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan.” Authoritarians seek government control over their citizens. President Trump has been overturning the record number of new regulations created by the Obama administration. So how is he authoritarian?

President Trump is often rightly criticized for acting unpresidential. His tweets are frequently inaccurate, vulgar and bullying. But it’s hypocritical for The Globe and other American media to attack the president relentlessly and then to criticize his “relentless attack” on the media. When The Globe accuses the president of “stoking domestic division for political and personal gain,” isn’t The Globe doing the same thing?

Under President Trump, the economy is growing at 3% again, the unemployment rate is so low there are more job openings than there are people applying for jobs, ISIS is on the run and Americans being held captive by rogue regimes are being released.

And yet more than 90% of media coverage of the president is negative.

State-Run Media

Early on, The Globe suggests that, “Replacing a free media with a state-run media has always been a first order of business for any corrupt regime taking over a country.” It’s an odd point to make, given that President Trump has never suggested that the media should be run by the government.

Conversely, consider the liberal outcry that takes place anytime anyone suggests eliminating federal funding of National Public Radio. Or look to New Jersey, where the liberal Free Press Action Fund sought $100 million from the legislature to keep the state’s media afloat. It received $5 million, in spite of the state’s fiscal problems.

The Globe editorial expresses shock that two recent polls show, respectively, that 48% and 51% of Republicans believe the news media is “the enemy of the American people.” Does The Globe think that’s Donald Trump’s fault?

You would think that the results from these polls and other growing evidence of media bias would cause a bit of self-reflection. Whatever your political beliefs, we would all be better served if media were publishing news that is fair, balanced and objective. And yet the daily onslaught of negative news about Trump tweets, Russian interference with our election, his relationship with Stormy Daniels and just about everything else continues.

The media is not “the enemy of the people,” but neither is President Trump.

Dreaming of an All-Inclusive Christmas

December 21, 2013

Liberals should make up their minds about Santa Claus. First, they censor any public display of Christmas and even make us feel uncomfortable about wishing others a “Merry Christmas.” Then they want an affirmative-action black Santa or, worse still, a penguin Santa.

The penguin Santa was suggested by Slate columnist Aisha Harris, who was traumatized by growing up with both a white Santa and a black Santa. If Heather can adjust to having two mommies, you would think Aisha could adjust to having two Santas. But all of this exposure to western cultural icons clearly creates an emotional burden for non-white Slate columnists, especially when the fat, white guy is more widely accepted than the black guy in a clear case of disparate impact.

Reporter Asks Obama Tough Question!

March 21, 2013

When a reporter asks President Obama a tough question, it’s news in a “man-bites-dog” kind of way, as it happens so infrequently.  So, in the interest of spreading the news, below is an exchange between NBC’s Chuck Todd and the Leader of the Free World.

Note the classic non-answer.  I’ve included what President Obama said, but added what he was likely thinking.

No News Is Bad News – Part 2

February 20, 2013

It was encouraging to see our blog post, “No News Is Bad News,” receive 49 comments on the Public Relations and Communications Professionals LinkedIn Group site, especially since the comments were pretty perceptive.

While almost all of those who commented agreed with my assessment that most people are no longer interested in news, there was some optimism, too.  General conclusions are that:

  • Hard news is being abandoned for celebrity news and “human interest” fluff.
  • Media have assumed that this is what readers and viewers want, but it may not be true.
  • News reported on the Internet is often inaccurate.
  • Social information is replacing real news.

The comments speak for themselves.  Here are snippets from a few of them:

PR Peeves #6, #7, #8 and #9: Why News Is Boring

February 15, 2013

I previously wrote that news may be becoming passé (see “No News Is Bad News”).  Media is not blameless.

These are challenging times for reporters, editors, producers, public relations practitioners and others in the news business.  Addressing the following “PR peeves” would help rejuvenate the news business:

No News Is Bad News

February 4, 2013

We all accept that the Internet is replacing newspapers and even broadcast media as the primary source of news.

But what if something worse is happening?  What if people are deciding that they don’t care about news?