The Media Is Complicit In The Spread Of Conspiracy Theories
HR-1, CPAC, Apple News, and Media Conspiracies
The media spends a lot of time these days talking about conservative conspiracy theories. There's never been an accounting for the media’s own conspiracy theories. Neera Tanden, Joe Biden's nominee for Office of Management and Budget has been withdrawn. She knows she's not going to get confirmed. She pushed a conspiracy theory that Anthony Kennedy had been bribed and that's why he stepped down so that Kavanaugh could be on the bench sheet. She pushed that theory knowing it was not true and no one in the media called her out.
Much of the media has been obsessed with the conspiracy theory that the Russians stole the election for Donald Trump. While it is true that the Russians intended to disrupt the election and intended to sow discord, the media advanced beyond the truth, just like all conspiracy theorists do, to concoct a strange story that included Michael Cohen making surreptitious trips to Prague to meet with Russian agents. This story has never been retracted by McClatchy.
The media wants to highlight all of the crazy conspiracy theories people on the right have, but buy into the conspiracy theories on the left. One of those was about CPAC. According to mainstream media outlets, though, it started as a fringe left-wing thing, the stage at CPAC resembled a Nazi insignia.
It was a conspiracy theory from the beginning, and yet it was treated legitimately by people in the media who are of the left. Now The Forward, a Jewish publication, reports:
"The company that was hired to set up the stage of the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida last weekend has taken full responsibility for the design of the stage that resembled the Nazi insignia. In an exclusive statement to The Forward on Tuesday evening, Design Foundry, a stage design firm based in Hyattsville, Maryland, said it, quote, ‘Had no idea that the design resembled any symbol nor was there any intention to create something that did.’ The organizers of CPAC have announced they will not use the firm for future events... Design Foundry has worked with CPAC for several years and has provided services to MSNBC, Google, Citibank, Target and Joe Biden."
Left-wing zealots on social media were able to generate a conspiracy theory, no different than the Q-Anon conspiracy theories, but more damaging in that it got into the mainstream media as proof that CPAC was some sort of white supremacist gathering. In fact, CPAC found out certain white supremacists were trying to come and blocked them from being able to get in the building. This should remind you how easily left-wing conspiracy theories get picked up by the media and treated as mainstream, which leads me to HR-1.
HR-1 - The Democratic Wishlist
The House of Representatives is considering House Resolution One. For those of you who do not know, House Resolution One has been, for the last 40 years, a messaging piece of legislation. House Resolution One rarely passes the Senate. It doesn't get passed by Republicans, it doesn't get passed by Democrats. House Resolution One simply does not become law.
I've gotten multiple calls from people whipped into a frenzy over what's in it. To start with, it lowers the voting age to 16, nationalizes the elections, requires every state to go to mail-in ballots, and legalizes ballot harvesting where people can show up at your door to collect your ballot. In short, it’s a Democratic wishlist. It's not going to pass because it can't pass the Senate. It may pass the House because they'll force a vote but even then, they've only got five votes to spare. It won't pass the Senate because the filibuster's there and several Democrats in the Senate have come out and spoken against it. Either way, it's got people whipped into a frenzy on the left and the right.
Voter suppression is left-wing mythology, but like the CPAC stage, it's embraced by the media because the media loves these stories. Look at Stacey Abrams. Stacey Abrams refused to concede in 2018 and they still treat her as if she won the gubernatorial race in Georgia. No one questions her because she checks all the intersectional boxes to be able to claim she won the race. The media can't fact-check her because they would be racist if they did.
There is a double standard. You have to acknowledge a double standard and the left-wing conspiracy theories of voter suppression. They're targeting Georgia now. Here is how one leftwing site reports it:
Democratic voters in Georgia cast nearly twice as many mail-in ballots as Republicans and in response, the Republican state legislature has introduced numerous bills that would impose onerous ID requirements and restrict absentee voting. Like Cruz, Georgia Senate Republicans now claim they do this in response to the calls of millions of Georgians who have raised deep and heartfelt concerns about the November 2020 election.
You guessed it, the Democrats say this is voter suppression and the media is happy to oblige. There’s just one problem: More than 400,000 Republicans said they wouldn't go vote in the runoff in January because they didn't believe in the integrity of the process. They thought it would be stolen from them. When Democrats did not turn out in Georgia in 2018, the Democrats said all of those storylines about Republicans potentially blocking people from voting and making it difficult to vote was part of the effort to suppress the vote. It wasn't what the Republicans did, it was how Republicans talked that suppressed the vote. If they're opposed to voter suppression shouldn't they want to restore integrity to the election so that 400,000 Republicans will show up and vote in a runoff? In Georgia, 75% of the Republicans who voted and more than 75% of the Republicans who did not vote in the runoff, believed that the election was going to be stolen. If the Democrats were really worried about voter suppression, shouldn't they want to do whatever they can to encourage those people? Or is it just the Democrats they care about?
I thought that they wanted everyone to vote. If you want everyone to vote, you've got to acknowledge that there are questions, whether you think they're ill-founded or not. The legitimate concerns are that it does make it easy to rig the system. If you have a ballot drop box that's nowhere secure how easy is it just to pour water down there and ruin the ballots? How easy is it to overwhelm the system?
Additionally, the Democrats are mostly fixated on things that will not actually pass the Georgia legislature. If I came on my radio show and spent an hour railing on all the fringy, wackadoo things with the Georgia legislature the Democrats wanted to pass, it would be a waste of time because they will never pass. But the media has partnered with Democrats in pushing conspiracy theories related to voter integrity that simply are not true. The media likes to treat the theories on the left legitimately while being dismissive of the right.
The CPAC Nazi symbol stage conspiracy became a mainstream media story. So, too, are the voter suppression stories by the left. It is left-wing mythology but the media treats it as real. The same media that dismisses Q-Anon as a conspiracy theory, treats all of this stuff as real when it's not true. Is it any wonder so many people don't believe the media anymore?