Left-Leaning Media Seek a Misinformation Monopoly

Left-Leaning Media Seek a Misinformation Monopoly. By Gerard Baker.

So many recent media falsehoods:

Kyle Rittenhouse is a domestic terrorist. Brett Kavanaugh is a rapist. Donald Trump won in 2016 only because he colluded with the Kremlin. Nick Sandmann, the boy from Covington Catholic High School on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, was an entitled white bigot. Mr. Trump said the neo-Nazis at Charlottesville were “good people.” Last year’s riots were mostly peaceful. Unarmed black men are routinely shot in huge numbers by police officers. The discovery of Hunter Biden’s laptop was a Russian plot.

Which of these have you heard in the last five years? I doubt there’s an American with even the faintest interest in public events who wasn’t made aware of every one of these stories, didn’t have them repeatedly drummed into his head in the amplifying loop that connects agenda-driving traditional news organizations, culture-shaping digital sites, knowledge-delimiting search engines, and information-controlling social media platforms. …

These were all, for a while, the received versions of major news events promoted by the people who loudly proclaim their credentials as guardians of the truth. They were all conspicuously consensus accounts of the biggest stories “reported” in the past five years by the usual newspapers and TV networks, relayed by the entire news food chain that seeks to emulate them and retailed eagerly by the half-wit entertainers of Hollywood, publicity-hungry professional athletes and the crowd of gender- and media-studies graduates who churn out press releases for S&P 500 companies.

And these are only some of the more obvious ones. I could have added: Inflation isn’t a problem. Andrew Cuomo was America’s greatest governor. Republican-run states are killing people with their anti-science Covid policies. A white man killed a succession of Asian-Americans in Georgia in a fit of racist rage. Russians offered cash bounties to the Taliban to kill American soldiers. Anyone who suggested the pandemic started in a Chinese laboratory was a racist. Oh, and Mr. Trump’s postmaster general was stealing mailboxes. …

Driving opposing views out of circulation entirely:

The larger problem is that these people, even as they tell us their ideologically approved falsehoods, are trying their level best to drive the other side out of circulation completely. Not just the falsehoods; they’d like to drive out facts and arguments they don’t approve of too. And they think they can do it.

The big buzzword on the left these days is — absolutely without irony — “misinformation.” Many of the big media companies now have teams of reporters to cover “misinformation” or, more conspiratorially, “disinformation.”

As far as I can tell, not one of these has yet produced a single report on any of those fabrications I briefly described at the top of this column. Surprise.

The aim is a full-bore corporate and regulatory crackdown on news and information that doesn’t help their cause. They want the memory-holing of the Hunter Biden story to be the model for all news dissemination.

The west is no longer a free society where public policy is debated and disagreement is tolerated or even welcomed. The notion that agitation and testing arguments against opponents lead to better outcomes has gone the way of fair elections. We are becoming more like the old Soviet Union, where a bureaucracy decides everything and if you disagree you’d better keep it to yourself.

The Hunter Biden coverup was a watershed event. That success just emboldened them.