By Samuel Stevens
Corporate media manufactured their latest ploy to discredit alternative information in the past week: so-called fake news. The Washington Post recently published an article with the absurd headline “Russian propaganda helped spread fake news during the election.”
The LA Times featured a similar story about a Merrimack College professor who released a collection site branded as fake news. Deviously, the Google doc (since taken down due to alleged harassment of the author) interspersed sites critical of U.S. foreign policy with media pushing UFO conspiracy theories. Either due to gross negligence or, more likely, malicious intent, the professor equated establishment-critical media with wild speculation about extraterrestrials.
The LA Times story on fake news reported that Facebook and Google would take steps to block fake news sites from utilizing their ad services as well. This is nothing more than a power play to keep major corporate media as the only source of information. Five multinational corporations own all mainstream media, down from 50 in the early 1980s.
Liberals have long been critical of Senator Joe McCarthy’s investigations into Communists in the US government and Hollywood in the 1950s. Now, they use the same excuses to keep the public away from alternative media. They have resurrected the specter of Russian antagonism to push their agenda, when the United States has demonstrably been the aggressor, fomenting war against Russia in Ukraine and expanding NATO.
Further, the leaked Podesta emails proved numerous corporate journalists were essentially Hillary Clinton campaign operatives. Comedian John Oliver, whose show poses as a news program, also took direction from the campaign.
The lying press delivered on their orders from the Clinton machine throughout the election. Trump was constantly attacked and had his words taken out of context. There have also been attempts to tie Trump to white nationalism and the “altright” when Trump is, ideologically speaking, a centrist who has been both a Republican and a Democrat.
Mainstream media spin is not unique to this election cycle, of course. The American press has a long history of complicity with the U.S. establishment.
This is the same media complicit with the outright lie that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction during the Bush administration. They have never raised issue with the Obama administration’s abuses of executive authority. The media claimed that Hillary led in the polls throughout the entire election, yet Trump won the majority of US counties.
U.S. media historically has been openly biased and partisan. Many newspapers began as vehicles of a local party organization. The concept of an “objective” press developed only within the last century. Bias in any kind of reporting is inevitable. The fiction of an objective media gives the establishment narrative credibility.
Social media and the internet have opened floodgates to new ideas and sources. The corrupt media of the establishment knows it is losing ground to alternatives. While many alternative sites have issues, the mainstream press is in no position to claim the moral or ethical high ground.