It’s easy to imagine Hillary Clinton’s frustration that an inexperienced amateur like Donald Trump would challenge her for president. It’s the feeling a media critic gets when an inexperienced amateur like Hillary Clinton press flack Phillippe Reines attempted to do media criticism for the Daily Beast website.
The headline was “I Spent a Week Down the Right-Wing Media Rabbit Hole—and Was Mesmerized by It.” It was sort of funny he would object to Gateway Pundit writing a headline like “CNN is a Cancer,” when the site he’s writing for just posted Fox’s “Laura Ingraham Wants Your Grandmother to Die.”
Reines begins by pretending that the American conservative only watches news or listens to radio stations that agree with him. They love to play this “rabbit hole” game, lost in the bizarro world:
Isolated. Detached. Disoriented. Disconnected from the real world. Damaged mental health. Even fear of survival.
No, I’m not talking about coronavirus quarantine. That’s going fine, considering.
I’m referring to my week-long self-imposed experiment: I simulated the content consumption of a Trump voter. What they read, I read. What they watch, I watched.
But here is the drop-dead funniest passage in the Reines-storm:
While there are instances CNN and MSNBC hosts display glimmers of bias, it’s usually accompanied by hesitancy followed by pangs of guilt. You can call Fox News personalities many things, but tentative is not one of them. The shamelessness in their delivery is uniform up and down the lineup.
Sure, Monsieur Phillippe, CNN and MSNBC are so routinely tentative and hesitant, and when they have a “glimmer of bias,” we can all see their guilt pangs. This was amusing, too:
Fox did not cover even one minute of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s daily press conferences during my viewings, despite being based in New York City. Seems odd.
Meanwhile, CNN runs all the Cuomo briefings, and skips the White House briefings. “Seems odd.”
The Hillary flack’s observations are mostly catty overgeneralizations, and there are zero quotes from the content, with the exception of a few headlines. For example:
Fox’s The Five, which airs at 5 p.m., illustrates the most blatant absurdity of the network’s already tenuous assertion that its pre-primetime programming is “news.” Its co-host Jesse Watters’ grade-school-level commentary makes Jeanine Pirro look like Walter Cronkite. It’s as if Don Jr. was given 280,000-character-limit tweets.
Or this cartoonish passage: “Based on the ceaseless barrage in the conservative media ecosystem, you’d think Joe Biden is an invalid who can’t stay awake and has destroyed more lives than the coronavirus.”
As if CNN and MSNBC haven’t spent years saying Trump’s mentally unfit for office and haven’t implied Trump owns every life lost to the coronavirus.
Reines at least realized the Drudge Report doesn’t match his “right-wing rabbit hole” game. “Drudge links to so many mainstream media outlets, such as the Associated Press and Reuters, and to enough Trump-skeptical content that on day two I deemed it contrary to the spirit of the simulation and blacklisted it lest I fall down the rabbit hole of facts, truth, and sanity.”
This whole pose is old and tired. Mark Hemingway nailed it:
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