I’m probably the last to realize this but it appears that CNN has become the liberal version of Fox News.
We all know that Fox is heavily slanted toward the far reactionary right or maybe conservatives or let’s just say on President Trump’s side at least (almost all of the time).
One caveat: it may be that what straight news reporting Fox does may be more of less objective (I am not a regular viewer but I see it enough to know of what I write). Most of what we see and hear from that network is opinion commentary presented as if it were the last word in news. The way much of the broadcast news works these days is that opinion and what purports to be straight news reporting are so intertwined that it is near impossible to discern one from the other.
Sadly, now, this can be said for CNN, in particular, and to a large extent the New York Times when it comes to the print side of the so-called news media (or the “press”, my preferred term).
But let me get to the point now: CNN hit a new low in this past Tuesday’s Democratic debate (really they are forums I think because they don’t follow strict debate rules, but in the popular parlance, or by the presenters of them, they are referred to as debates):
CNN correspondent Abby Phillip asked candidate Bernie Sanders about reports that in 2018 he told current candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren flat out that a woman could not be elected president in the United States. In his answer Sanders flat out denied he ever said that. He made a point blank denial in his response at least twice. After his final denial, Phillip immediately turned to Warren and asked: “Senator Warren, what did you think when Sen. Sanders told you a woman could not win the election.”
So on nationwide television this correspondent took it upon herself to portray that Sanders was lying. I mean he just denied it. Of course none of us, including the correspondent, unless we were there, know whether he said it or not or in what context and what tone. I mean they are politicians. Politicians discuss strategies and speculate on one another’s chances. And maybe Sanders never did say anything like that and maybe he did. The point is the way the correspondent handled the thing shows bias and was totally unfair to Sanders.
And this is what gives the press, journalism, or “the media” as so many, especially anti-press freedom people, like to call it, a bad name.
I know nothing about Ms. Phillip. Maybe her producers or whatever they call her higherups, put her up to it, to frame the question that way. But it was reprehensible and dangerous to press freedom, which is so important. Those who want news people to only say and print good things about the candidates or policies they support will use this kind of thing as ammunition against a free press.
And that is about all I have to say on that at this time.
Well, one more thing:
No matter what Sanders might have said on the topic of whether a woman could be elected it seems rather immaterial here. And he did claim he would support a woman candidate or any of the male candidates who might get the nomination. And, importantly, he noted that Hillary Clinton received three million more votes than Trump — but of course, as we know, through a quirk that is called the Electoral College, Trump won. And I admit he apparently was elected fair and square. Even if the Russians interfered with propaganda, they did not force me or anyone to vote for a particular candidate. I have not read to date that they or anyone actually interfered with the actual voting itself.
Oh, and still another thing:
I think there are too many candidates, although the field is narrowing down. But I would like to see one-on-one debates between the various candidates with full debate rules. Topics could be picked from suggestions from the public. It seems to me the so-called journalists have too much a part, too much sway, in the whole thing. They are supposed to be asking questions in these debates but not framing those questions in such a way that they are biased toward one candidate. The topics up for questions should be a mix of what the journalists as educated observers think is important, yes, but also concerns solicited among the public at large (and I guess to some extent that is done).