America’s Useless Press

The biggest headline on Drudge  earlier this morning?  “FoxNews host death threats after criticizing Trump.”

Following linked story from Drudge will land you on a Variety page where we read “Fox News host Eboni K. Williams on receiving death threats after segment criticizing Trump.”  Yet, after reading the story (several times) I couldn’t find anything very specific – no mention of the word “police” or “FBI” – just references to posts on her website by what the reader is left assuming were put there by persons unknown.

Yet, prominently featured in the Variety “story” was the title (and link to buy) the reporter’s upcoming book.  (We ain’t gonna link it…)

(Continues below)

 

The whole situation stinks.  Let me explain:

News operations don’t do much “enterprising” in the modern world of journos.  If something isn’t on a press release, or piped out on one of the paid-distribution press release outfits, it doesn’t usually get covered.  Unless, like the occasional F5 tornado, it’s too big not to cover.

As I used to instruct my university (of Washington) journalism interns “When you see a story you didn’t know about, always ask “HOW DID THEY GET ONTO IT?”

There is always a reason to ask.  When you’re a beat reporter hanging around the ‘cop shop’ for news, you talk to the homicide guys, the dicks, and then you wander by the Chief’s office on your way back to the press office for a refill of the styro cup with what passes for coffee.  You buy doughnuts for Vice now and then.

This is how you find the really good sources – the ones that will give you enough of a ‘lead’ that you can follow it. Juicy stories…front page stuff.

Fast forward to this morning’s example of what looks to us like the collapse of investigative reporting:  We have to wonder How to Variety get onto this?

Did Eboni Williams call them?  Did her BOOK publicist?  Did the PR Department of Fox? I mean seriously:  Is this a ‘story?’  How did it “get legs?”

Ugly fact:  We live in a world where (when sh*t happens) there’s always a line of people working every possible angle to monetize things.  We wonder, again in passing, how many books this Variety story will sell?

See, to a real reporter – or anyone able to read the news closely – the how did they get onto this is always bigger than the story itself.  News is marionettes; what we’re after is the string-pullers.

We suspect we know how Drudge picked up the story:  Once the Variety folks wrote it (with the embedded Amazon book link) the story showed up as an RSS (real simple syndication) feed over here: http://variety.com/static-pages/rss-2/

Fox News Host Eboni K. Williams on Receiving Death Threats After Segment Criticizing Trump

Posted:Thu, 17 Aug 2017 00:36:30 +0000

All of which gets us to the highly cynical (yet, we fear ACCURATE) perception that the reason Donald Trump and Steve Bannon, along with all the other folks in the White House, are facing their own failure is because Trump (et al) have not understood that Trump Bashing is an Industry.

Let me hold up a few examples to drive the point home:

In the New York Times today? Trump Opens Breach With Party, Military and Industry.

Along with A Trump Lawyer Echoes the Secessionist Rhetoric,  plus details of how Bannon Mocks Colleagues and ‘Alt-Right’ in Interview, and The Confederate Symbols Being Removed.

And it doesn’t stop there.  The Times then cheers on: A New Resistance to Confederate Symbols‘ and ‘The World We Live In’: Black Voices on the Turmoil.”

And the paper’s front page – which is all we’re talking here – the online front page – continues with A Fox News Host Attacks Trump, and Some Viewers Bristle, Jewish Staff Is Silent After the President’s Remarks, C.E.O.s Organize a Mass Defection After Trump Hedges.

Then the monetization of anti-Trump continues with G.O.P. Fears Trump Left the Party in a Precarious Spot and G.O.P. May Be Stuck in a Relationship With Trump.

A curious thing emerges from the headlines here:  The dueling miscreants of Charlottesville have disappeared. Lost in the crowd of Trump-kickers.

It’s been morphed into bad Trump, Confederacy, Black Voices, Jews and  the tattered remnants of the GOP.

That’s why – when we see a story like the Fox host story in Variety we like to pause briefly to think about the battlespace.

The story in Charlottesville was about the miscreants (on both sides) while the cops stood by to let it bubble into a big story – not Trump.  Not statues. It’s about who paid for the out of towners?  Sore-us, I suppose.  But no one is asking. Instead we see the tills thrill with shill’s spills.

Once upon a time, such truths were self-evident.

Reporters shouldn’t be surprised to receive death threats, if they’re doing their job.  My first run-in with death threats involved a purported local Seattle Mafioso-type [allegedly] pushing drugs and running girls and a numbers game out of a couple of a number of local strip joints back in the day.

Unlike carefully-worded, non-specific website comments, this was the very serious “Don’t open strange packages if any show up in your mailbox…” and “Don’t take the same way home every day for a while…”  advice from local cops and an old FBI agent named Charlie who knew the score.

That was back in the day….and THAT it wasn’t a story.

But, then again, I hadn’t written a book yet.

The pressure to monetize Charlottesville is incredibly summed up in this:  Apple’s Cook says he disagrees with Trump, vows donations to rights groups.

You mean of money that could be paid out to shareholders?

 

Meantime:  Real News

Fed’s Fischer says move to unwind bank regulation ‘dangerous’: FT.  No kidding?

South Korea’s Moon Jae-In Says There Will Not be Another War on the Korean Peninsula.  A more mentally prepped person would have noted that the last war is not over….it’s just on hold.

Buy Blackout Curtains!

Because Outdoor light at night linked with increased breast cancer risk in women.

And pick up some soda water: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene. 

Markets to Drop

Fed Industrial Production out shortly.  Dow set to open down 62.

 

Comments

America’s Useless Press — 37 Comments

  1. Look at the timeline of Trump’s contact with Russians on Bill Moyers’ website (billmoyers.com) and see what you think – reminds me of one of those fires in a coal seam that go merrily along until they are under a town and burst out. Will the town/Trump be destroyed?

    • Where is Bill Moyers’ timeline for Hillary & Bill’s contacts with the ‘Russians?’ What about his timeline for the missing emails and servers and all of that hoopla, destruction, and wiping, I mean come on! Where’s the timeline for raising billions to help Haiti after the earthquake and what work was done, what is left to be done, and WHERE is the missing money? Where is his timeline for the Clinton Foundation – inquiring minds want to know. Where is his timeline for Comey’s work in government and all the positions he held so he could cover for the corruption? Surely, Bill can pull some good investigative journalism out of his hat can’t he?

      • Since the timeline is specifically in regards to the Trump Campaign contacts with the Russians – why don’t you start a similar one for your theory of the Clintons and the Russians – both are theories until supported by facts – actual verifiable facts, the existence of which the Moyers website is willing to stake their, and Mr. Moyers reputations on.

        As the motto for the high school I attended said, “Actions, not words.”

    • Trump was elected, because voters were sick of ‘politics as usual.’ Apparently there are not enough of them people ;-( therefore, we’ll return to the ‘politics as usual.’

  2. Just got back from coffee shop and read NY TIMES. They must even have their editors on the street digging up trump stories.

  3. George,

    I have Google News bookmarked in my favorites and I look at it maybe once a day. I’ve noticed that it seems to populate with a lot of anti-Trump stories from all the main liberal rags. So, I decided to run an experiment by blocking all the sources that ran obviously biased political headlines to find out how long it would take to get down to some minimally unbiased information worth actually knowing. I would block a source, refresh the page and repeat. It was working pretty well, but one negative story kept popping up about Ivanka Trump’s rabbi. I seriously got down to some obscure news sources that were publishing the story before I finally got rid of it. All in all, I had to block 19 sources to finally get rid of that ridiculous story. 19!!

    The results of this little experiment tells me that at the very least there’s not much original content out there, most of it is outrageously biased and that Google’s algorithms have biased politics baked in the cake. Somehow. I think we knew that already…

    MAJ-13

  4. Hey George, speaking of exploitation, I always wondered if Trump just used his “Southern Strategy on Steroids” as a clever marketing tool to march through the Republican primaries. You know, brilliantly exploiting the politics of blame, of us vs. them. And playing to the angry and to the macro-economically displaced and disaffected.

    But, unfortunately, his own spontaneous words during this Charlottesville episode ha revealed that he really believes it too. Oh well. Best, Mike.

    • This level of political pseudothink is why you haven’t held public office.

  5. Off topic: would the Sessions confiscation rule extend to banks/mortgage homeowners like a renter/landlord relationship, and would the confiscation rule extend to Clinton foundation or Soros groups for criminal activity.
    If not, why?

    • Try this on: Because the criminals own the government at some very dark levels?

  6. George– If Trump could just keep his mouth shut, he might be able to get something done. It is his own worst enemy. When in a hole, he can’t stop digging.

  7. As a retired Flight Nurse, and having worked in Medical Electronics Sales for 27 years, I will remind you that the normal ranges for all the lab tests were derived from thousands of tests run on samples after an 8 hour fast. You can game the system but does it help your health? I used to do that with my diabetes but a new test many years stopped that. Glycosolated hemoglobin gave a 90 day average of your blood glucose level. Now called A1C for short. At our age you should have a C-Reactive Protein test run also. It is an an old but useful test for inflammation of the blood vessels. It is a good indicator of early heart disease. It was good talking to you last week, enjoy your radio work with Noory too.

  8. Dear Sir,

    One hopes the Charleston protesters don’t start torching dollar bills once they figure out that General R. Lee married a step grand-daughter of President George Washington.

    “Just one more thing…”: would the cyber ancestry of white supremacist Andrew Anglin share a common provonence with a certain Hector Xavier Monsegur? Likewise it would make sense that automotive electronics have come a long way since the time of Daisy Mae’s brothers.

  9. Life is good without cable TV. No newspeak to insult my intelligence. When I want to watch make believe shows I stream a movie. When I need to buy something I research it without the commercials tainting my thoughts. The news is out there but harder to find in the mist of all the available technology.

  10. Today’s lead – “America’s Useless Press” – is pretty damned good! Not having been a journalist, but understanding a wee bit about how a story can be slanted, your piece opened a few new areas for me to consider when reading pieces. Good on ya G!

    Since you have oh so much free time (that’s sarcasm) I’d love to see you start up (or oversee) a new site that examines the big stories of the day or week, and discusses them using the same approach you used with Charlottesville and its aftermath. It might just open a few eyes…. but might also get you a few threats from the tolerant left as well.

  11. Growing up in Maryland, many civil war battlefields were within easy driving distance: Gettysburg, Antitem, Fredericksburg, Chancelorsville, to name a few. I find it almost incomprehensible that the American political ‘leadership’ (very lose term) is willing to part with our American heritage by the removal of Confederate statues. I do expect that Trump will protect the battlefields since they are mostly on Federal property. Me thinks this is the beginning of the Marxist re-education camps. History must be re-written! There was no confederate army and no civil war!

    • “Me thinks this is the beginning of the Marxist re-education camps.” I wonder how many people remember what former Senator McCarty said? Of course, he was an evil person, this Senator! ;-)
      So sorry, WE brought this on ourselves.

    • Exactly! And since there was no Civil War, obviously the events that actually led up to it couldn’t have happened, and neither did reconstruction, Jim crow, civil rights agitation, MLK, kkk, etc. So we need to now re write all our history books to eliminate all the above. Problem solved. No further reason for complaining or agitating. While we’re at it, we can remove all that stuff about Columbus,Native American genocide, and anything about our early Presidents who may have owned any slaves. We ought to get rid of anything they wrote, too, such as the Constitution. LOL!

  12. Everybody hates Trump.
    The establishment GOP, because he came out of nowhere, and bested them at their own game.
    The “Press” hates Trump for two reasons. One, he’s not a Liberal quite like them, and is very plain spoken. (Simple & Direct language being alien to them.) And, two, he fights back — with them: not just taking their Krappe and making weak and P.C. apologies. He shows little deference to their previously unquestioned Power.
    Corporate America — namely the Big Bosses of the “New” Great Corporations hate Trump. He disrupts all the mutual backscratching arrangements and hard-spent lobbyist dollars — Congress critters, once purchased, should stay firmly bought and be obedient.
    Liberals hate Trump — mostly because he’s not Hillary. All their self-blinding polls left them betrayed — and SOMEbody MUST be Responsible for this Horrible Wrong!
    Mainstream Democrats (are there any left?) hate Trump because he’s not JFK or Truman or FDR. He’s some kind of Impossible New Thing, and The System has not developed antibodies against this sort of infection, and they’re all afraid this will spread to all those stupid dullards who live well inland from The Coasts and still grow our food and make things.

    AND! They (all) haven’t figured out yet how to make money on Trumpism — because as we all know, everything is a Business Model.

    • OR, if you subscribe to the idea that Presidents are SELECTED NOT ELECTED, (which seems apparent to moi) then why was D.T. selected? Well first it’s been good for media monetary wise and helps them APPEAR relevant and cutting edge in today’s idiocracy. It’s also given grist for the pundits in MSM and altmedia who would be writing about godknowswhat if it weren’t for D.T. It’s also kept people’s shrinking discretionary income (thank Obamacare) and the consequent slipping economy off people’s minds. Lastly, though seldom even whispered is the fact that D.T. is the best friend the Zionists have ever bought, a true win for Israel and the MIC. So there’s no biz like show (& Shoah) biz!

    • Trump is the sort of person that is hated because it’s deserved. Braggart, Richie Rich, spoiled, whiner, proud pgrabber, self-proclaimed celebrity reality tv star, jet setter, liar, ignorant, bigot, loud, blowhard, grand stander, immature, draft dodger, fast talking slick salesman in his 5,000 suits and 2,000 shoes.

      If you just met him in your daily life you would probably walk away thinking all of he above.

      If he changed his last name from (R) to (D) ohhh boy imagine the uproar from republicans then.

      He is everything that republicans would normally hate, hate, HATE. That’s what I find so cuckoo.

    • When using terms like “Lame stream media” and “Congress Critters” don’t expect to be taken seriously.

      • We expect to be taken with the exact degree of seriousness as we afford Congresscritters and the lame-stream media… ;-)

  13. “Buy Blackout Curtains!”

    For those that work alternate shifts.. blackout curtains is the ticket.. Speaking about prejudice.. if you are Caucasian I dare you to walk down the street of any neighborhood in LA or other big cities.. I met a truck driver.. he was sitting with tears in his eyes..I asked why his response.. he had just seen a murder.. he had delivered a load in NYC.. was doing his logs and two guys held another down and chopped his head off.. he called the police and the police response was why are you in that neighborhood we won’t come there till daylight.. another truck driver almost the same story except he just had his stereo stolen.. another one in Chicago now this prejudice didn’t start with trump.. it didn’t start with Obama.. it started two hundred years ago.. what gets me is there has been just as much drama as what happened in the slave trade with the Indians, Chinese, Irish etc.. so why does this prejudice receive so much attention.

    • Since no person is born with prejudice perhaps it’s learned from experience, and so on, and so on? Who’s to blame?

      • If you believe Sumerian cuneiform tablets, then let’s blame the Annanaki, when they created “us” they installed the class designation of superiority? I myself, believe the only person to blame for this behavior looks back at you in the mirror…

        Do unto others works, feels good when practicing it too!

    • Dear Shabu Lulz, (good one)

      Are you suggesting the Charger driver had his car hacked? Please expand..

      Fun cultural fact: the Charger in the Dukes of Hazard was named The General Lee…

      George,

      How’d they ‘get on to it’ indeed…Just the facts Mam’.

      Thank you for Ure time & intention!