'The Brainwashing of My Dad': Documentary Explores the Scary Influence of Right-Wing Media

Filmmaker Jen Senko examines the effect of conservative media through the lens of her own father's radicalization and its impact on her family.

The new documentary The Brainwashing of My Dad explores one of the most bizarre media phenomena in this country: the dangerous power right-wing media can have on everyday people.

As filmmaker Jen Senko tried to understand the transformation of her father from a non-political, life-long Democrat to an angry, right-wing fanatic, she uncovered the forces behind the media that changed him completely: a plan by Roger Ailes under Nixon for a media takeover by the GOP; the Powell Memo urging business leaders to influence institutions of public opinion, especially the universities, the media and the courts; and under Reagan, the dismantling of the Fairness Doctrine.

As Senko's journey continues, we discover that her father is part of a much broader demographic, and that the story is one that affects us all.


Through interviews with media luminaries, cognitive linguists and grassroots activists including Noam Chomsky, Jeff Cohen, George Lakoff and others, The Brainwashing of My Dad unravels the plan to shift the country to the right over the last 30 years, largely through media manipulation. The result has led to fewer voices, less diversity of opinion, massive intentional misinformation and greater division of our country.

The documentary shines a light on how it happened (and is still happening) and leads to questions about who owns the airwaves, what rights we have as media consumers and what responsibility our government has to keep the airwaves truly fair, accurate and accountable to the truth.

Watch an exclusive clip from The Brainwashing of My Dad below:

Watch the trailer below:

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