Media histrionics versus reality – Oneida Dispatch


As recently as last week, we learned that a certain Donald J. Trump was, indeed, Typhoid Mary of the COVID-19 outbreak during the 2020 campaign. In addition, unlike the original, an Irish-born cook who unknowingly infected entire families at the turn of the 20th century in New York City, Trump tested positive for COVID but didn’t bother to warn any of the dozens of people he was with has come in close contact previously himself being hospitalized.

So was Trump deliberately trying to infect Joe Biden when he arrived, visibly ill, at their first presidential debate? Nobody knows. You will recall that the entire Trump family came forward unmasked in defiance of the agreed upon rules. Five of the six people who helped Trump rehearse have fallen with COVID, including former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who almost died, and blames Trump for infecting him.

Elsewhere, a 38-page PowerPoint presentation detailing a crackpot ploy to steal the 2020 presidential election was inadvertently handed to the House committee investigating the January 6 insurgency by former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, who later developed an acute case of lockdown “executive privilege.” The idea was that Trump would declare a national emergency and seize the voting machines on the grounds that Chinese hackers had corrupted them – for which he did not. there is not the slightest proof.

And what was the major political news of the week, according to our esteemed Washington press? Why, the rise in the price of milk and gasoline, of course. Last week’s announcement of a 6.8% increase in inflation over the past year sparked semi-hysterical coverage, reinforcing the media narrative that dire economic conditions have rocked Biden at the White House. On her nighttime show, CNN’s Erin Burnett was practically wild – speaking with guests and treating their explanations with contempt. How could anyone deny that runaway inflation was crushing American families?

On his invaluable website PRESS RUN, media critic Eric Boehlert details what he calls Washington’s press corps “married to a Biden Doomsday script.” Dan Kennedy of Media Nation blames what he calls “the overarching need for media balance – to treat Democrats and Republicans as if they are both legitimate actors even though Democrats, for all their faults, carry on to act like a normal political party while Republicans have fallen into authoritarianism.

We’ve seen this movie before: a supposedly impartial establishment press succumbing to feverish gang coverage of stories that never add up. Do you remember Hillary’s emails?

The great Whitewater scandal of legend and song? The “war on gore” of 2000? Selling Saddam Hussein’s non-existent weapons of mass destruction as a pretext to invade Iraq would also be admissible.

CNN recently found a family she described as being close to scarcity due to rising milk prices. Supposedly, the cost of a gallon had gone from $ 1.99 to $ 2.79 where they live. That’s a 40% increase. According to the Consumer Price Index, milk has increased 4% in the past year, which is notable, but 10% from what CNN reported.

That too: The family said they bought 12 gallons a week – enough to bottle-feed several calves. (Okay, that was a big family.) Nonetheless, MarketWatch documented that according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, milk has cost no less than $ 2 a gallon since the turn of the century.

CNN’s story had no basis in reality.

Not to be outdone, The New York Times portrayed a man from Toms River, New Jersey, complaining about the rising gasoline prices for – get this – his Cadillac Escalade: “Aldo McCoy, who owns an auto repair shop in Toms River… recalled recently refilling his 2003 Cadillac Escalade and seeing the price exceed $ 100, when it was previously $ 45.

For the record, a Cadillac Escalade is presented as a “full-size luxury SUV”. Slightly smaller than a school bus, an Escalade costs around $ 80,000. So I suspect that McCoy might be a bit thick when he says he works 15 extra hours each week to refuel.

It is also true, as the Times reports, that the notoriously volatile price of gasoline “is $ 3.41, which is $ 1.29 more than it was a year ago, according to AAA. “. Also that it is falling rapidly, as oil-producing countries increase their production. I paid $ 2.79 the other day. Your mileage may differ.

So here’s another story from the New York Times dated April 12, 2020 – old story, whole 20 months ago – detailing an “unprecedented” deal between the Trump administration and its friends in Saudi Arabia and Russia for “the most. big [oil] production cut never negotiated ”for the express purpose of driving up prices and increasing profits for the energy industry.

“Oil prices climb a record 25% as Trump talks about huge production cuts,” headline CNN commented. Like most Trump programs, it has failed due to the pandemic. Today, however, OPEC is sharply increasing its production. The prices are going down.

But until they do, it’s all Joe Biden’s fault.

(Arkansas Times columnist Gene Lyons is a National Magazine Award winner and co-author of “The Hunting of the President” (St. Martin’s Press, 2000). You can email Lyons at eugenelyons2 @


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