- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 22, 2019

So you’re sick of the news media and its assorted journalistic sins. Such a sentiment prompted President Trump to literally fire The New York Times and Washington Post this week. The White House has canceled its subscriptions to the two newspapers, irked by their endless negative, speculative or suggestive coverage of Mr. Trump and his administration.

Yes, well.

Such fierce sentiments about the press are not a new phenomenon. Consider that Fox News host Howard Kurtz wrote a book titled “Media Circus: The Trouble with America’s Newspapers.” The year was 1993, and obviously the “circus” is alive and well, and has even expanded and mutated in the past quarter-century.

But wait. Mr. Kurtz also authored another book titled “Spin Cycle: How the White House and the Media Manipulate the News” in 1998 during the Clinton administration years. In 2012, Mr. Kurtz produced yet another book titled “Hot Air: All Talk, All the Time” which tracked bombastic broadcasters. By 2018, the author produced “Media Madness: Donald Trump, the Press and the War over Truth.”

OK then. Mr. Kurtz has significant institutional knowledge. And here’s what he has to say these days, as told to “Full Measure” host Sharyl Attkisson on Sunday. “In your view, did Donald Trump cause the media to descend into madness or just expose media madness that was already in existence?” she asked.



“The media’s credibility problems were maybe more like a fever. Once Trump trauma took effect — that’s what I call it — I think he sort of made the media go crazy. That’s not to let the press off the hook. But there’s something so visceral in the response of many journalists and pundits to the Trump presidency, to Donald Trump himself. I mean, in addition to the fact that you might expect them to be ideologically opposed to a lot of what he wants to do, he just drives them up the wall,” Mr. Kurtz replied.

“They never fully accept, many of them, that he is the president. So I think that’s where I got the ‘madness’ in the title. For the press, Donald Trump has become like the great white whale. And it is hard to avoid the conclusion that so many journalists are invested in an outcome that either sees him driven from office or defeated in 2020,” he observes.

THE GOP SKEWERS SOCIALISM

The Republican Party is formally pushing back against the constant and often glowing calls from assorted Democrats and progressives who seek to persuade Americans that in an ideal world, the United States should really be a socialist nation.

“Democrats want to bring socialism to America. They are offering ‘free’ everything, from government-run health care to free college-for-all. Learn the truth about what that actually means from real people who lived in socialist countries, and survived to tell their tale,” the GOP advises at a brand new online resource which offers a reality check from those who have not had a very positive experience with socialism.

“This is the truth about socialism. Hear from the people who have suffered under the oppression of a centralized socialist government. The promises of free government services and equality for all turned into a nightmare,” advises an introductory video.

“America was founded on liberty and independence — not government coercion, domination, and control. We are born free, and we will stay free. Stand with President Trump to tell Democrats: America will never be a socialist country,” it concludes.

Curious? Take a peek at Victimsofsocialism.org.

FOR ALL YOUR IMPEACHMENT NEEDS

Yes, the ever-mutating impeachment “inquiry” is hard to track, given that facts and truth are subject to interpretation. Or they appear to be non-existent. All that aside, one indefatigable public affairs network has launched a new resource for those who pine for a little clarity.

“C-SPAN introduces its new Impeachment Inquiry webpage, designed to make searching, viewing and sharing all of C-SPAN’s impeachment coverage easier,” the network advises.

“Congressional briefings, House hearings, Trump administration response and more. C-SPAN’s Impeachment Inquiry webpage is your fast and easy way to watch unfiltered coverage and our points of interest help you identify key moments if you don’t have time to watch the entire event,” the news organization says.

Thank you, ever helpful C-SPAN. Find their new feature at C-span.org/impeachment.

KABILLION GAZILLION JILLION

Trillion used to be a rare word in news coverage, unless, say, it was a story on plankton or stars. Thanks to certain spend-happy politicians, the word appears before the public on a regular basis, prompting some to wonder if we need a new word like, oh, “kabillion” to cover everything. Actually, “quadrillion” follows trillion, but what the heck. On to the news, meanwhile.

“Medicare for All will require $32 trillion in higher taxes over the next decade, according to a report by the Urban Institute and the Commonwealth Fund,” reports Americans for Tax Reform, which combed through the findings and focused upon “single payer” socialized health care for all U.S. residents, including illegal immigrants.

The grassroots activist organization advises that Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Elizabeth Warren has refused to answer whether the “Medicare for All” concept will raise taxes on the middle class — and she has done this at least 23 times on camera in her broadcast appearances. Yes, the group has compiled the video evidence of this at ATR.org.

Meanwhile, the tax-centric folks also cite Sen. Bernie Sanders‘ proposal for Medicare for All — which contains $14 trillion in tax hikes, or roughly 40% of the total cost of the program.

“It is also important to note that a significant portion of Sanders’ $14 trillion tax increase relies on eliminating healthcare options for American families ($4.2 trillion) and a 7 % tax on employers large and small ($3.5 trillion),” the group says in their analysis.

POLL DU JOUR

72% of Americans say they have shot a gun.

59% say “at least some of their friends” own guns.

57% live in a household with no guns.

48% grew up in a household with a gun.

30% currently own a gun.

11% don’t own a gun but live with someone who does.

A Pew Research Center analysis RELEASED TUESDAY, based on a poll of 3,930 U.S. adults conducted March 13-April 4, 2017.

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