What’s the Fake News Freak Out Really About?

For decades a staple of the far-right has been the story that the news media in the United States is unreliable, doesn't tell the true story, and even promulgates outright lies. There was the "absolute reality" that the moonshot was faked, that the government is filled with communists, that whites are the superior race, or that both 9/11 and the Newtown massacres were false flag government psychological operations. Conspiracy theorist and right-wingers have long pointed the finger of doubt or damnation at the corporate news agencies in our country.

But 2016 was the year when that perspective on the mainstream news went mainstream itself. The man just elected president of the United States has promoted outright lies, like there being three million illegal voters, or that climate change is a hoax invented by the Chinese, where the immigrants and Muslims are responsible for crime way out of proportion to "average Americans", also known as white people in his world.

Both the president-elect and the entire Republican Party not only embrace outright lies, but damn the mainstream media for not embracing them too. On the other hand, what would you call the refusal of MSNBC to cover net neutrality in any meaningful way -some speculate because its parent company is hostile to net neutrality - or their unwillingness to call out advertisers in the defense and oil industries with anything at all resembling investigative reporting? Is that fake news by omission?

For that matter, why won't they cover the consequences of Republican voter suppression efforts, as in Interstate Crosscheck and others? Is it because they need Republican guests to come on their shows to maintain their profitability? And their "news" stars need to suck up to them to maintain their multi-million dollar salaries?

Whatever the answers to these questions, the media in the U.S. is being questioned now both as to veracity and bias like never before, and it's no longer just the John Birch Society doing the questioning.

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