Media

6 of the Biggest Media Meltdowns This Week

A New York Post column casually calls for nuking North Korea... and much more.

1. Hillary Clinton promotes dubious, culty media outlet Verrit, internet proceeds to destroy it.

Every now and then products come along that are so pointless and badly executed one can only sit back in awe of the sheer incompetence. Such a product, Verrit, was launched this week by Clinton hanger-on and man with a checkered past Peter Daou and his wife. It’s a website that nominally allows people to post memes, quotes and other information by entering a verification code that, well, the rest doesn’t really make a lot of sense. Since its launch Monday, which was strangely promoted by Clinton herself, every outlet from GizmodoVox and Slate to the Washington Post and the AV Club has bashed the media upstart for being little more than a disjointed cultist meme farm.

It got so bad that Daou started attacking journalists simply for liking tweets mocking the website; an outburst that led to even more sarcastic memes. The internet can be a cruel place, but few recklessly invite this cruelty more than Mr. Daou.

2. Fox News eggs on white vigilantes threatening to 'shoot looters' in Houston.

Fox News’ business model is predicated on driving to the one-yard line of white supremacy, then acting shocked when it's accused of trying to score a touchdown. Fox's institutional flirtation with white nationalist tropes has gotten more overt with the rise of Trump, a fact that was on full display in one particularly gross segment in which a Fox News anchor laughed at the thought of a few vigilante rednecks going around shooting “looters".

Who are these looters? Presumably the two gun-wielding white guys will drive around making this determination and blowing people away based on their own ad hoc judgments of guilt. All just another good laugh on the set of Fox News.

3. Alex Jones is now pro-FEMA camps.

After spending over a decade railing against the threat of FEMA and its globalist plot to take over the U.S. homeland via its camps, Alex Jones’ website and personal Twitter feed promoted a tweet insisting we fund FEMA over DACA, the Obama-created program to give citizenship to the children of undocumented immigrants.

 

Combined with Jones’ love for the pro-cop, pro-military, pro-Department of Homeland Security President Trump, it’s beginning to seem like InfoWars “anti-government” rhetoric was based more on mindless racist grievance and paranoia than an actual opposition to the government. Oh well, he still has "Jewish” crisis actors and gay frogs.

4. Breitbart and Fox News serve up talking points for Jeff Sessions' DACA-rescinding press conference.

If one needs more evidence the Trump administration takes its tone and language directly from Fox News and Breitbart, look no further than Jeff Sessions' press conference this week. As liberal watchdog Media Matters notes, Sessions' primary talking points were ripped off directly from the two outlets. Breitbart/Fox and Sessions both claimed DACA was “amnesty” (it’s not), that the “child migrant surge” was due to DACA (it’s not), that DACA recipients take American jobs (they don’t), and that DACA was “unconstitutional” (it isn’t).   

Steve Bannon may have exited the White House, but his propaganda reach hasn’t. Recently, there have been reports Trump’s new Chief of Staff John Kelly was trying to wean Trump off InfoWars, but it’s doubtful the two pillars of Breitbart and Fox News will go anywhere anytime soon. After all, where else would they trial balloon their talking points?  

5. Pro-Trump fossil fuel lobbyist and Washington Post columnist writes greatest 'self own' in op-ed history.

America’s most corrupt columnist and noted sleazy lobbyist Ed Rogers wrote one of the greatest "self owns" in the history of op-ed writing. In his attempt to rail against the “lurch to the left” taking place in the Democratic Party, he listed off a litany of problems, a point that was laughably undermined by the tacked-on disclosure his editors forced him to put in:

Economic policies [of the Democrats in 2020] will consist of government giveaways and anti-business crusades. Social causes will give no quarter to moderate positions, and LGBT special interests, labor unions, global warming fanatics and factions such as Black Lives Matter, along with other grievance industry groups, will face no moderating counterforce. (Disclosure: My firm represents interests in the fossil fuel industry.)

Sort of takes the wind out of one's rhetorical sails to rail against—among other causes—climate change, only to have to cap it off by pointing out you’re a lobbyist for Exxon. Moreover, one has to ask how Post editors felt publishing the "disclosure" the same week three once-in-a-generation hurricanes formed in the Atlantic ocean. Democracy dies in darkness, indeed.

6. New York Post column casually calls for genocide in North Korea.

Typically when calling for war against another country, American propagandists will make some token attempt to distinguish between destroying a military or a leadership and an entire people. It maintains the pretense of distinguishing between civilians and military targets.

No such pretense was required for America’s most radical right-wing rag, the New York Post, which ran a columnby Fox News analyst and former United States Army lieutenant colonel Ralph Peters expressly calling to “destroy North Korea”:

The opening sentence said it all: “Better a million dead North Koreans than a thousand dead Americans.” That’s a hell of a moral calculus, justifying nuking an entire population to prevent the hypothetical death of Americans.

Adam Johnson is a contributing analyst at FAIR and contributing writer for AlterNet. Follow him on Twitter @AdamJohnsonNYC.

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