The mainstream media gets a lot of flack from, well, nearly everyone — and a lot of it is warranted. The advent of the 24/7 news cycle driven by advertising dollars and ratings has turned “news” into news/gossip people want to hear about most.
That being said, not everyone on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News or any of the other networks is terrible. In fact, Sunday mornings are one of the best times if you want to see legitimate journalism.
Take yesterday for instance when several of Donald Trump’s top spokespeople were absolutely crushed by CNN’s Jake Tapper and Fox News’ Arthel Neville.
I’ll start with top surrogate Katrina Pierson who made a fool out of herself (which she’s done often) during an interview with Neville trying to explain why Trump hasn’t released his tax returns.
Here’s the exchange where Pierson called a 40 year tradition of presidential candidates releasing their tax returns a “novelty”:
Neville: So the question that everyone wants to know, why won’t Mr. Trump release his tax returns? And can you answer the implications that he’s hiding something?
Pierson: This really has become much of a novelty in presidential campaigns.
Neville: What has become a novelty?
Pierson: Just simply releasing tax returns.
Neville: It’s been going on since the 1970s. It’s a tradition, not a novelty. The voters want to know.
Pierson: It’s a novelty tradition!
Neville: Excuse me. Okay, since the 70s, it’s now a novelty.
For the record, here’s the definition of novelty:
Novelty: The quality or state of being new, different, and interesting.
So, clearly Pierson had no idea what the word “novelty” actually means. In no way is it “new, different or interesting” for a presidential candidate to release their tax returns — something that’s been happening, as the Fox News host said, since the 70s.
If you watch the interview (which is posted below), like many other journalists before her, Neville was having an incredibly difficult time taking Pierson seriously.
Then there was CNN’s Jake Tapper who took on Trump’s campaign manager and former Arizona Governor Jan Brewer in exchanges where you could tell he was fed up with the nonsense he was hearing from these people.
During his interview with campaign chair Paul Manafort, Tapper mocked Trump’s top adviser after he repeatedly accused the media of ignoring other news stories to push some sort of pro-Clinton agenda.
“Here’s the thing, it wasn’t just reporters,” Tapper said. “It was Republicans, it was people in Washington, D.C. who want Mr. Trump to win.”
“The point is most people did not interpret it that way,” Manafort responded. “It was not at all meant to be a threat. But the point again is you could have covered what he was saying or you could try to take an aside and take the Clinton narrative and play it out. You chose to do that instead.”
I love how Trump and his people always claim that what the media is reporting is not what “most people” feel — because they ask his supporters. As if those blindly supporting Donald Trump are going to be remotely objective to actually vetting the things he says and does. Donald Trump himself has admitted these people are mindless sheep who’ll vote for him no matter what.
That’s around the time Tapper ripped into Manafort.
“As a factual matter,” Tapper stated, “on Monday, my show covered Mr. Trump’s speech. Okay? We did. We covered Mr. Trump’s speech. And we did cover those Hillary Clinton emails. So, these things, just because you say them, they’re not true. I mean, we have been covering the substance. We have been covering things that are bad for Hillary Clinton.”
But this is how Trump’s campaign has been operating for weeks. Since they see their “ship sinking,” they’re now playing up the card of “the media is trying to help Clinton/the election is going to be rigged” because they will never admit that, despite all their propaganda, Donald Trump is a train wreck of a presidential candidate. Sure, he did okay during the primary when the scrutiny of the media isn’t nearly as intense. As the general election begins to really get going, you’re seeing him unravel more and more.
However, Tapper didn’t just embarrass Mr. Manafort. During a separate interview he also mocked Jan Brewer, who seemed quite upset that the media has dared to quote Trump verbatim.
“I believe the American public wants him to win,” Brewer said about Trump.
“Not according to polls,” the CNN host responded.
“Well, we have polls that are saying that he clearly is closing that gap now,” the former Arizona governor quipped. “The media tends to look at a few little statements that he might say off the cuff and blow them up. Let’s talk about the policies he puts out. We want to hear more about that. Rather than the press completely and continuously just beating down on certain little one-word sentences.”
“How dare we cover the comments he makes,” Tapper said mocking Brewer’s comments.
Like I said earlier, it’s clear that the Trump campaign is setting the foundation for the excuses they’re going to use when/if he loses this November. He’s already thrown out the “if I lose, it’s obvious the election was rigged” nonsense. Now both the candidate, and his surrogates, are spending much of their time whining about the media for using his exact words against him.
This whole thing has become an absolute joke. To be honest, I don’t even get angry at this stuff anymore because when I watch these people trying to defend Trump it’s so blatantly obvious that even they don’t believe the things they’re saying.
And this is only August. By the time the real scrutiny starts pouring on Trump’s campaign here in a few weeks, this circus is going to reach levels of absurdity that make what we’re seeing now seem tame by comparison.