Alan MacLeod
Alan MacLeod
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Support the Tropes

Support the Tropes

 In an earlier piece (FAIR.org, ), we explored some country case study examples of how the press helps to manufacture consent for regime change and other US actions abroad among left-leaning audiences, a traditionally conflict-skeptical group.Some level of buy-in, or at least a hesitancy to resist, among the United States’ more left-leaning half is necessary to ensure that US interventions are carried out with a minimum of domestic opposition. To this end, corporate media invoke the language of human rights and humanitarianism to convince those to the left of center to accept, if not...

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Alan MacLeod
Apr 9
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Financial Press Fears Brazilians Will Be Allowed to Elect President of Their Choice

Financial Press Fears Brazilians Will Be Allowed to Elect President of Their Choice

 The progressive Brasil Wire () reported: “Lula is now a free man, free to run for political office.”The Brazilian Supreme Court this month against former President Luis Inacio “Lula” da Silva. A towering figure in national politics, Lula was the country’s president for eight years between 2003 and 2011. He was later convicted on highly dubious corruption charges and spent 18 months in prison, where his plight drew worldwide attention, making him, in the of Noam Chomsky, the “world’s most prominent political prisoner.”Lula’s incarceration directly led to far-right authoritarian Jair...

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Alan MacLeod
Mar 17
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Humanitarian Imperialism

Humanitarian Imperialism

 Aversion to military intervention has been the default position of the left for at least half a century—certainly since the huge protests against the Vietnam War. Washington planners lamented the development of the so-called “”—a widespread progressive hostility towards US interventions (invasions, bombings, coups or economic warfare) around the world. A 2018 found the public still infected, with over two-thirds in support of limiting military action overseas, including 78% of Democratic voters.President Joe Biden’s record of support for foreign intervention spurns that progressive...

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Alan MacLeod
Mar 3
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Media Just Can’t Stop Presenting Horrifying Stories as ‘Uplifting’ Perseverance Porn

Media Just Can’t Stop Presenting Horrifying Stories as ‘Uplifting’ Perseverance Porn

 “No… it’s not awesome at all. It’s a painful indictment of the state of healthcare in America,” reads the first comment under this tweet by Fox 5 DC ().“THIS IS AWESOME!” That’s how Fox 5 DC its story () about Logan Moore of Cedartown, GA, a disabled two-year-old whose parents were unable to afford to buy him a walker, so employees at Home Depot fashioned one together themselves for him.The story closely resembles another recent CNN report (): “A Two-Year-Old Couldn’t Walk on His Own. So a High School Robotics Team Built Him a Customized Toy Car.” That piece noted how Minnesotan toddler...

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Alan MacLeod
July 21, 2019
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Media’s Deficit Hawks Fly Again—as Soon as a Democrat Takes Office

Media’s Deficit Hawks Fly Again—as Soon as a Democrat Takes Office

 If raising the national debt is “Trump’s most enduring legacy,” as the Washington Post () suggests, then it follows that in order to reverse that legacy, President Joe Biden will have to reduce the debt.A Democrat has assumed office, and so, like clockwork, corporate media are here to play their favorite game of pretending to suddenly be deeply concerned with the deficit and the national debt. Debt has risen sharply after a Covid-induced economic crash and rounds of enormous Trump tax cuts (the last of which 82% of the benefits to the richest 43,000 Americans, while only 3% went to those...

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Alan MacLeod
Jan 25
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Trump’s Twitter Ban May Be Justified, but That Doesn’t Mean Tech Giants’ Power Isn’t Scary

Trump’s Twitter Ban May Be Justified, but That Doesn’t Mean Tech Giants’ Power Isn’t Scary

 EU commissioner Thierry Breton (Politico, ):  “Regardless of whether silencing a standing president was the right thing to do, should that decision be in the hands of a tech company with no democratic legitimacy or oversight?”In the wake of the dramatic of the Capitol last week, a host of big media companies, including Facebook, Reddit, Pinterest, Twitch, YouTube, Snapchat, Instagram and TikTok, have all against Donald Trump. Making the most headlines, however, was the decision of the president’s favorite medium, Twitter (), to permanently suspend him “due to the risk of further incitement...

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Alan MacLeod
Jan 15
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Media Cry Wolf for Third Time on Afghan ‘Bounties’ 

Media Cry Wolf for Third Time on Afghan ‘Bounties’ 

 CNN () reports that “news of China offering cash for attacks on US forces comes as China awaits whether Biden will embrace Trump’s more punitive policies towards the nation or move to reset relations between Washington and Beijing.”First it was Russia (FAIR.org, ). And then . But now it is China that has supposedly been placing bounties on the heads of US soldiers in Afghanistan—according to information received by outlets like the New York Times (), Axios () and CNN ().Outlets worldwide ran with the news, many treating it as highly credible:There were, however, some serious flaws with the...

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Alan MacLeod
Jan 11
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Billionaire-Owned Media Look Out for Neediest by Demanding They Get No More Money

Billionaire-Owned Media Look Out for Neediest by Demanding They Get No More Money

 A lot of extremely rich people seem to be against the idea of giving money to the rest of us. In recent weeks, as the US continues to flounder amidst a surging Covid-19 epidemic, a wide range of political figures, from Bernie Sanders to Donald Trump, have come out in support of a one-time $2,000 check to Americans who make less than $75,000.Washington Post ()Chief among the doubters of the plan have been corporate media. A Washington Post editorial () denounced the project as a “bad idea” that would compound all the government’s errors from the previous nine months. As is tradition with...

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Alan MacLeod
Jan 8
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‘Freedom Is Blossoming’: After Dismembering a Journalist, Saudi Arabia Goes on a PR Spree

‘Freedom Is Blossoming’: After Dismembering a Journalist, Saudi Arabia Goes on a PR Spree

 CNN () describes mass arrests ordered by Mohammed bin Salman as a way “to shake up the kingdom in a way his predecessors dared not.”“Freedom is blossoming.” That is how, without a shred of irony, CNN International Diplomatic Editor Nic Robertson describes Saudi Arabia in his recent article (CNN, ). Visiting the kingdom, he informs us, it has “changed beyond recognition” since his last stay. All around him, there was “a sense of lightness, a freedom to make choices.” And this is all thanks to one man: Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. “Now our lives as Saudis completely changed,” says one...

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Alan MacLeod
Dec 23
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‘Divisive’: How Corporate Media Dismiss Ideas Unpopular With Elites

‘Divisive’: How Corporate Media Dismiss Ideas Unpopular With Elites

 “The idea of Medicare for All is immensely contentious,” says the New York Times ().New York Times columnist Paul Krugman (Twitter, ) described a $2,000 Covid relief check as “divisive,” even though 75% of Americans (and 72% of Republicans) the government to prioritize another universal payment. All too often, words such as “divisive,” “contentious” or “controversial” are used merely as media codewords meaning “ideas unpopular with the ruling elite”—what FAIR “not journalistically viable.”Medicare for All is a prime example of this. At least since the issue began receiving national media...

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Alan MacLeod
Apr 17
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