Friday, September 18, 2020

News Media's Symphony Of Silence

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Journalists can't handle the truth anymore.

Victor Davis Hanson, in his column yesterday, says: "The news as we once knew it is dead," noting that stories are often covered only in terms of political agendas---but "the real warping of the news is not just a matter of slanting coverage, but deliberately not covering the news at all."

This week we have witnessed, what I'm calling, "a symphony of silence" on major news stories.

Be informed, not misled.

You would think that the three mainstream news organizations---NBC, CBS, ABC--- left the practice room, went on stage, and with Joe Biden conducting the players, presented a stunning performance of silence.

A symphony of silence.

But that didn't happen. It didn't have to.

Like a premier jazz quintet, they play off one another, often improvising to embellish the outcome.

Silence on 3 major economic news stories this week that would influence voters.

Media Research Council is reporting: "The Big Three excuses for news shows ignored three major pieces of economic news that happened between September 15 and September 16."

MRC said this:

Median household income was “$68,703 in 2019, an increase of 6.8 percent from the 2018 median of $64,324,” according to the U.S. Census Bureau September 15. University of Michigan professor of economics and finance Mark J. Perry tweeted a day later that this “was the highest on record and about 10X the average increase of 0.72% since 1968.” Also, the official poverty rate in 2019 dipped to 10.5 percent, “the lowest rate observed since estimates were initially published in 1959,” according to the Bureau.

Lastly, Bloomberg News reported September 16, that current homebuilder optimism “jumped five points from a month earlier to 83, beating estimates and hitting the highest level in 35 years of the survey, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Market Index. It was 78 last month, which matched the previous record from 1998.”

I would add that the media also ignored the fact that the real median incomes of White, Black, Asian and Hispanic households all increased from their 2018 median.

MRC also mentioned that the Big Three "morning" news shows are no better. Yesterday they ignored the US unemployment rate dropping nearly 2 percentage points to 8.4% in August from 10.2% in June.

A few short years ago, under the Obama administration, these stories would have been headline articles.

I sometimes hear conservatives long for a time when we can return to honest news reporting.

Personally, I don't believe it will happen.

Serious conservatives and Christians must put their minds, hands, and their money to the task of creating parallel or alternative news providers.

Here's why.

The news as we once knew it is dead.

Victor Davis Hanson is a conservative Christian intellectual who understands the times. In his column yesterday, he pronounces the media as we have known it, as "dead."

He notes that the drift toward biased news on the part of the media has been happening for some time. As an example, Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy at Harvard University found that 93% of CNN's coverage of the Trump administration was negative since 2017.

This election season has only accelerated that.

Hanson's examples include:

COVID-19. News stories only cover it in terms of political agendas. Always claiming Trump's handling of it has been a "disaster", yet Dr. Brix and Dr. Fauci have not faulted the Trump administration's over all performance. In fact, they attribute any shortcomings to initial global ignorance about the origins and nature of the epidemic, incompetence at the World Health Organization, or the initial inability of bureaucracies to produce available and reliable test kits.

He reminds us that prominent progressives criticized Trump's travel ban, while Nancy Pelosi encouraged people to travel to San Francisco's Chinatown.

Hanson says this week the Trump administration achieved the most stunning breakthrough in Middle Eastern diplomacy in over half a century, yet these historic events have drawn little to no media attention.

He notes silence on the fact that Iran is teetering on the brink, its terrorist appendages, including Hezbollah, is broke, China is increasingly being ostracized by much of the world, and the US has cut its carbon emissions, often at a rate superior to those nations still adhering to the Paris climate accord targets.

Hanson says we've been told that Trump has decided to never concede his sure loss in November and might have to be forcibly removed from office---perhaps by the military, he is dismantling the Post Office to disrupt mail-in voting and he has defiled the memory of fallen American soldiers in cemeteries abroad.

Hanson says: 

"All of this is demonstrably untrue, were supported only by anonymous sources, or were the sensationalism of authors hawking books. Yet such concocted melodramas will continue each week up to Election Day, while fundamental geostrategic shifts abroad brought about by American diplomacy will by intent go unnoticed."

"The news as we once understood it is dead."

He says: 

"It's been replaced by the un-news: a political narrative created by partisans who believe the noble ends of destroying Trump justify any biased means necessary---including destroying their own reputation and craft."


The bridge at Deception Pass, between Whidbey Island and Fidalgo Islands in Washington State, got its name from Captain George Vancouver, because "he felt deceived by the width of the waterway."

The prophet Jeremiah (9:6) said: "You live in the midst of deception..." and Ephesians (5:6) instructs us to "Let no one deceive you with empty words..."

"Empty words" characterize our culture---particularly our news media.

Sometimes we may identify with Captain George---feeling deceived by the width of the waterway, but God's Word promises passage through the most challenging, deceptive, confusing experiences in our lives.

Be Informed. Be Strong. Be Bold. Be Courageous. Be Prayerful. Vote. Live Abundantly.