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Fake News Journalism Media Truth

EXPOSED: Astonishing Fake News Against Rick Scott in Senate Race

Rod Thomson

I don’t really like the term “fake news” because it has come to mean any story with which the person using the phrase disagrees. That’s not particularly helpful.

But there really is fake news out there, and it is being heavily promulgated by the dinosaur media that is still pretending to be mainstream. It’s not just the big dogs of CNN or the AP or the New York Times. What is going on in Florida media markets is so bad right now as to require equal time if it weren’t newspapers. It’s straightforward Democratic attack ads cast as “news” stories.

The latest came in Sunday newspapers around the state owned by rapidly expanding media conglomerate Gatehouse Media, which publishes 21 newspapers in Florida and has 570 media outlets nationwide. (Gatehouse recently acquired the Tampa Bay Times, Florida’s largest newspaper.)

On Sunday, Gatehouse newspapers generally ran the exact same story with the exact same headline as it came out of their capitol bureau in Tallahassee: Rick Scott turns to those he appointed for campaign cash

They used different dropheads below the headline, depending on their layouts and styles: Well-heeled Floridians appointed to state boards are ponying up funding for governor’s bid to unseat Nelson and ‘It smacks of pay-to-play.’

The reason this epitomizes fake news is not that the same story that ran in all these newspapers is a lie. The thrust of it is accurate enough. It’s fake news because it is not newsworthy. There is no news in this breathless, page 1 Sunday story plastered around the state during a highly competitive U.S. Senate campaign between Scott (worth noting, an early supporter of President Trump) and 40-year D.C. incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson — a race that may determine who controls the Senate.

Here’s the gist. The governor of Florida appoints hundreds and hundreds of people to boards, advisory councils and commissions around the state — university boards, water boards, airport authorities, environmental boards, medical boards, building boards and so on. Naturally enough, he appoints people who agree with him on issues, particularly on issues that relate to those boards. In what is perhaps less shocking than the sun rising in the east, many of those people who agree with the governor also support the governor politically. Some even donate to his election campaign. Oh the scandal of it all!

And yet, there it is. That’s the entire story. Some of the hundreds of appointees who all agree with Gov. Scott politically have donated to his Senate political campaign; exactly as has been the case with every single governor ever.

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There’s even less to the story than that. Reporter writes: “Scott has collected close to $1.4 million from 127 appointees, their spouses and children, who have given either to his Senate campaign or the New Republican PAC supporting his bid…”

So the 127 number covers three categories, not just appointees. Spouses can reasonably be included. Children means adult children, which may be making their own decision on supporting Scott. But they’re still lumped in to inflate the number. How many are just appointees? 50? 80? The story doesn’t say, and one can reasonably infer that is because that number is pretty small compared to what may be a thousand appointees. But to get the real percentage using the reported 127 number as the numerator, we need the total number of appointees, spouses and children as the denominator. That means this is probably a very tiny percentage. Well under 10 percent. That makes it hard to hide the fakeness of the fake story.

This is a picture-perfect definition of non-news. This is the equivalent of reporting on a plane that landed smoothly, taxied to the terminal and all the passengers deboarded safely — and  making that sound shifty and suspicious if it could be reflected badly on a Republican. It’s just that bad.

And maybe a little worse. I wear three hats in relation to this particular fake news story. One, I am one of those appointees by Gov. Scott — to the Board of Trustees of State College of Florida. Neither Scott nor his team has ever asked me for money or brought up political support of any kind in the interviews prior to appointing me to the position. Twice. And, I’ve not donated to Scott’s campaign.

The second hat I wear is as a former long-time journalist in the mainstream media, spending many years covering politics. And the third hat, I now work with select political candidates running for office. So I have seen up close and personal both sides of equation between reporter and political machine. Based on these experiences, I am about 99 percent sure that this story — and the many like it — are actually opposition research by the Nelson campaign, which is then fed to friendly, gullible, allied reporters within Gatehouse Media, in this case, in their Tallahassee bureau.

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There is plenty to criticize in the fake story on basic journalistic grounds. But this sentence that the reporter included to show balance reveals just how badly the reporter misunderstands basic reality, to put it in the most kind light.

“Those contributors deny that there’s any link between their appointments and the checks they cut for Scott’s Senate bid. But the campaign data shows a remarkable correlation.”

“Denies” is one of those implied guilty words the media loves to use. And then using the conjunction “but” to start the following sentence implies the denials are suspicious. The real problem is the last word. The correlation actually is long before this reporter “discovered” it (again, being generous) in the campaign finances. The correlation is between the type of principled person Scott appointed and the type of principled person who supports Scott’s campaign for the Senate — which is a blindingly obvious correlation with zero nefarious implications.

This is the latest in an ongoing stream of anti-Scott stories emanating from Gatehouse Media’s Tallahassee bureau. Some others include:

Rick Scott’s donors still mostly a mystery, but what’s revealed belies outsider image (July 6, 2018)

Scott’s use of blind trust challenged as illegal (July 17, 2018) (Even blind trusts aren’t good enough if you’re a Republican.)

Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s investments draw scrutiny (July 21, 2018)

Gov. Rick Scott profits from Hep C drug tied to state prisons, opioid crisis (July 22, 2018)

Low pay casts shadow over Florida’s improving jobs picture (Aug. 4, 2018, as Florida nears an all-time low in unemployment — still negative about Scott.)

These were found quickly in the first couple of pages with a Google search of “Gov. Scott and Gatehouse Media.” A Google search of “Sen. Nelson and Gatehouse Media” does not locate one negative story in the first two pages. But several pieces of puffery.

The point is, this is a glaring pattern with Gatehouse Media; and of course, it is true in the rest of the Florida media, too.

This is why Republicans need to raise so much more money than Democrats to have a level playing field: Gatehouse Media stories such as these, quite possibly planted by the Nelson team, are the equivalent of millions of dollars in free advertising to Nelson. Why spend money on attack ads when you have the media to do it for you?

Rod Thomson is an author, TV talking head and former journalist, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.


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Journalism Leftists Media Trump Truth

Hundreds Of Media Outlets Make Trump’s Point Today

Rod Thomson

The media is a surprisingly self-unaware lot sometimes. And boy are they putting a fine point on that today.

A few months ago, the media went into circus hysterics when Sinclair Broadcast Group required all of the company’s television news anchors around the country to read a scripted editorial that pointed out the “troubling trend of irresponsible, one sided news stories plaguing our country,” decried “fake stories” and lamented that “some members of the media use their platforms to push their own personal bias and agenda to control ‘exactly what people think’…This is extremely dangerous to a democracy.”

The media responded theatrically about how “chilling” was this call to commit better journalism than is being done. Well, actually they were most upset at some corporate suits daring to tell journalists to commit to high standards. Sure, it may have been poor optics to recite the exact same verbiage on each station. The goal of the script, however, is something every media outlet says it aspires to and does (but doesn’t.)

Here is the dirty little secret. What Sinclair did is exactly what happens at newspapers across the country every day. An editorial board — in almost all newspapers made up entirely of leftists — determine what the opinion of the newspaper will be. Not the owner, not the suits, a group of leftists who largely all think alike. And those opinions across the country from paper to TV are as uniform as the Sinclair statement in terms of worldview, politics and agenda. And far more nefarious to America and the role of the media.

Today, in a self-unawareness zeitgeist, literally hundreds of newspapers across the nation are taking to their editorial pages — as one, a la Sinclair — to denounce and attack President Trump and his “media is the enemy” rhetoric. They pledged to all write editorials and publish them on this day, today — to recite a pro-media, anti-Trump message all at once. Just. Like. Sinclair…Self. Un. Aware.

Now frankly, they do this all the time anyway. This bit of publicity stunt was dreamt up by the relentlessly liberal Boston Globe to show the importance of journalists. Now mind you, they don’t really mean Breitbart or Fox or Daily Caller journalists. No, those aren’t real journalists. They’re the wrong kind of journalists because they have the wrong bias. Real journalists are biased from the left. Sure, they don’t see it in those terms, but it is undeniably true.

Of course, this is hyped up nonsense in pursuit of an agenda — exactly what Sinclair was rightly saying journalists shouldn’t be doing. How can I be so sure? President Trump has not lifted one finger to limit the expression of the journalists or cause them any harm while President Obama waged a veritable war against the friendly media and was arguably the most dangerous president to American media freedoms in the modern age.

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Obama spied on AP reporters by seizing phone records of more than 100 journalists in a dragnet to scare off whistleblowers. It was thug intimidation of both journalists and whistleblowers. Obama also went after Fox News reporter James Rosen, and named him a “co-conspirator” to pursue criminal charges after he — get this — published leaked information. Obama also went after New York Times reporter James Risen to reveal his source of a leak. In fact, Obama used the arcane Espionage Act to pursue nine other reporters who reported leaks. Further, in one of his first acts in office, Obama dismissed AP photo so he could better control pictures of himself. And Obama’s Federal Communications Commission was actually planning to put government monitors in newsrooms to see how reporters gathered information. (They ultimately backed down.)

Now, how many reporters have been criminally pursued or monitored under President Trump for about 10 billion leaks? None that we are aware of. How many phone records seized? None. How many charged as co-conspirators for publishing leaks? None. And so on.

And yet here we are. Through all those Obama media assaults, there was never an organized editorial day to fight back against the dangerous usurpations of that administration. In fact, there was little more than perfunctory reporting. No outrage. Why? Because Obama was their guy. He represented their vision for the country and their agenda for getting there. In practice they were every bit as much his wingmen as Eric Holder. It’s what inevitably happens with a monolithically one-think media.

A few journalists saw it and still remember. They are worth highlighting because they are a rare species.

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Here’s what the New York Times’ Risen wrote shortly after Trump’s election:

“If Donald J. Trump decides as president to throw a whistle-blower in jail for trying to talk to a reporter, or gets the F.B.I. to spy on a journalist, he will have one man to thank for bequeathing him such expansive power: Barack Obama.”

Chicago Tribune anti-Trump columnist Margaret Sullivan wrote in June:

“But what happened under Obama set an ominous tone for reporters who were trying to do their jobs of informing the public.”

This tiny handful of journalists saw the dramatic and real actions taken against reporters by Obama. But the media at large just yawned. Why? Because unlike Sinclair’s corporate statement on good journalism, the Globe, Times and all the rest hold a monolithically left to far-left and vehemently anti-Trump worldview.

The reason this is so much more telling than Sinclair’s, which was a one-time, generic statement promising good journalism, is that this reveals publicly, by the newspapers themselves, just how uniformly their worldview is anti-Trump. Trump’s statements of “enemy of the people” simply reflects him somewhat hyperbolically seeing himself as a representative of the people — which he, sort of, is electorally. Today’s antic puts in neon lights that they are certainly an enemy of Trump.

The media’s anti-Trumpism is the actual agenda Sinclair was decrying. Yet the self-unaware media only saw a chilling effect by Trump’s words while shrugging indifferently all the way through Obama’s literal attacks on the media — cheering themselves on now in pursuing their own journalistically ubiquitous, anti-elected President agenda.

So the very thing they decried as chilling when Sinclair did it in favor of good journalism, they are now doing to attack the President. They not only don’t see that, they see themselves on the side of the angels. The vast majority of America disagrees.

Rod Thomson is an author, TV talking head and former journalist, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.


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Immigration Journalism Media Truth

AP Lie Goes Around The World — Truth Still Lacing Up Boots

Rod Thomson

The AP recently put out a story that is in effect and intent, a lie. It was published July 6 under the more-than-misleading headline: “AP NewsBreak: US Army quietly discharging immigrant recruits.” As intended, it looks bad. But in reality, it is open flimflam based on the contents of the story itself. Yet it’s tentacles are spreading as others are now picking up the fraudulent narrative and re-spreading it.

As we reported last week, there is not one data point in the story supporting the headline, just some unsubstantiated comments from immigration lawyers plus a few anecdotes. In the big picture, this is the normal vetting policy the Army always does — looking for anything from terrorist connections, to MS-13 or other gang activity to mental issues to anything subversive. The AP was writing about a program instituted 16 years ago to give “expedited naturalization” for immigrants who enlist in the military and receive an honorable discharge. (Including illegal immigrants? Well, guess who doesn’t say, because the media officially refuses to acknowledge any difference.)

The AP reporters talked to some immigration attorneys who told them “they know of more than 40 who have been discharged or whose status has become questionable.” They do not provide any timeframe. Deep into the story, the AP admitted it: “was unable to quantify how many men and women who enlisted through the special recruitment program have been booted from the Army…” So they have nothing but some anecdotes and a quote.

More than 110,000 recruits completed the program and received naturalization in the 16 years that the program has existed. Yet the AP bases the story on an immigrant lawyer telling them that 40 had not passed the background checks recently and then runs the inflammatory headline. How does that compare to past years? We don’t know or they’re not saying. Maybe there has been a shift, but where is the supporting evidence? The worst of journalism is taking a couple of anecdotes and creating a politically contrived narrative. It’s really hard to not consider this story irresponsible and inflammatory, and the headline a simple lie.

But it hardly ends with the story. Remember, the AP is a massive, if somewhat shrouded, news organization that produces 2,000 stories daily and is used by 900 newsrooms globally reaching literally half the world’s population.

After the initial wave of impact from the story, it becomes background for more stories and columns. Exhibit A is Esther Cepeda, a syndicated Washington Post columnist based in Chicago whose columns are published nationally in more than 125 media outlets from Dallas to Denver to Vegas to Indy to Minneapolis to San Diego. She is considered an “expert on U.S. Hispanic/Latino issues” by the left-leaning Aspen Institute.

Cepeda used the deceptive AP story as the basis for a column attacking Trump entitled “Trump administration is shooting itself in the foot.”

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Cepeda wrote about the “Trump administration’s recent move to discharge immigrants who enlisted with the promise of a path to citizenship, as The Associated Press recently reported. In all, an estimated 15,000 foreign-born people in the military could either be kicked out or have their applications for citizenship delayed or denied.” [Emphasis added]

Where does the 15,000 number come from? Cepeda doesn’t give a citation for it. The original AP disinformation does not use it. Presumably, it is the total number of immigrants currently in the military. Using that number tends to inflate the “story” considerably from the 40 that an immigrant attorney said.

Cepeda uses the phrase “eliminating highly qualified immigrants” without any citation that they are indeed “highly” qualified. It’s just in her column. In other words, she just nudged up the AP deception meter a little higher. Her column will undoubtedly be quoted by others now using “highly qualified,” because of course, she’s an expert.

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Meanwhile, Youtube, Facebook and Google are all tipping the scales to provide more exposure and support for these supposedly trustworthy organizations such as the AP and the Washington Post, while slowly silencing alternative news and views outlets, such as The Revolutionary Act.

For centuries, versions of the saying that a lie travels around the world before the truth gets its boots laced up has been used. But in the age of massive news gathering organizations and virtually immediate technological distribution of information — or misinformation — it’s never been more true.

Rod Thomson is an author, former journalist and current TV talking head, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.


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Journalism Truth

The AP: The Shadow Giant Bolstering Democrats

Rod Thomson

When conservatives consider media bias, they invariably jump to mainstream outlets such as the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN and so on.

But what is often overlooked is the Associated Press, or AP, which indisputably has the biggest media impact because its stories run in virtually every daily newspaper and news network in the country including the New York Times and Washington Post, CNN and so on.

People often complain about a story in the Times or Post or elsewhere, but it turns out to be an AP story. But that is only known by looking under the name of the byline of the reporter or the tagline or citation of a video. Most media consumers don’t do that.

But the reach of the AP is staggering. Just hidden. According to the organization’s annual report, the AP:

  • Produces 2,000 stories every day
  • Operates bureaus in more than 100 countries
  • Has reporters in every state capital
  • Is used in 900 newsrooms around the world
  • And of course, has social media reach of 12 million Twitter followers and 2 billion Youtube views. In this case, social media is small compared to the intra-media impact.

The bottom line: more than half the world’s population sees content from the Associated Press every day. No other media outlet can touch this reach. Most people just don’t realize it because the AP is not it’s own media brand. It’s a consortium. And every bit as hyper-liberal as the brand names it provides content to.

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The AP is a not-for-profit headquartered in New York City. The AP, founded in 1846, is owned by its contributing newspapers and radio and television stations. It operates as a cooperative association. The AP “wire” carries stories from its contributors, but it generates nearly 15,000 stories weekly. It also sells content to other media organizations not in its consortium.

This gigantic mainstream media collective of thousands of journalists around the world is a major contributor to the deep bias and decline in journalistic standards.

Consider just a few of the most egregious examples from this year:

▇ Headline: “AP NewsBreak: US Army quietly discharging immigrant recruits”

The most recent is maybe the most outrageous. It looks pretty bad from the headline. But really, this is the normal vetting policy the Army always does on recruits — looking for anything from terrorist connections, to MS-13 or other gang activity to mental issues to anything subversive. The AP was looking into a program instituted during the George W. Bush administration, which gives “expedited naturalization” for legal immigrants who enlist in the military and receive an honorable discharge. Obviously looking to bolster military recruitment after 9-11.

The AP reports 110,000 recruits completed the program and received naturalization in the 16 years that the program has existed. But Trump nefariousness must be found. The AP actually has no data at all. They talked to some immigration attorneys who told them “they know of more than 40 who have been discharged or whose status has become questionable.” They do not provide a timeframe — three months? Two years?

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Finally, the AP reported (admitted): “the AP was unable to quantify how many men and women who enlisted through the special recruitment program have been booted from the Army…”

Obviously anytime thousands of people must pass a background check, some don’t. There was simply no story here and the AP all but admits it in buried caveats. In fact, they can’t even document there was one discharged. Nonetheless, they still ran it with their inflammatory headline, and of course papers around the country published it.

▇ Headline: “Trump budget would gut science, environment programs”

The headline is bad enough, but frankly, it’s the normal mainstream-media gruel when Republican budgets are announced. They typically look immediately for how cuts will hurt women, minorities and the poor. But the agenda lately is to make Trump and Republicans appear to be Neanderthals.

The lead to the story makes that perfectly clear:

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s proposed budget would gut programs for science and the environment, reflecting the Republican’s rejection of mainstream science.

Not a whole lot more needs to be said. The AP importantly for their agenda connects President Trump’s correct suspicions about global warming data to the Republican Party by getting that in the lead to ensure that everyone is smeared — when that would never be the case in the few negative stories the AP did about Obama

Just awful. And on purpose.

▇ Headline: “Minorities hear division in Trump call for unity”

This story was from the State of the Union, in which one Democrat actually ran out of the House during Trump’s speech. The speech was warmly received by most Americans who watched it — at least until the spinners at the AP started their “reporting.”

Here’s the lead:

“President Donald Trump’s call for American unity in his first State of the Union address struck an us-versus-them tone for many minorities, raising questions as to what extent Americans are put off by a leader who continually draws criticism as bigoted and xenophobic.”

Questions by whom? Well, the AP doesn’t say. The safe bet, however, is: AP reporters and editors!

“For many people of color, Trump’s address before Congress on Tuesday night hardly reflected a shift in his ideology or his bruising style of governance. To them, the president simply softened what he’s been saying all along, particularly when it comes to immigration, and sought to add a veneer of tolerance by using the stories of people of color to illustrate his points…In taking credit for a drop in black unemployment…”

A “veneer of tolerance” is a phrase that would never get past a professional editor who wanted an unbiased story. Obviously that is pure opinion. Same with “taking credit for a drop in black unemployment.” As if the AP ever said Obama “took credit” for stabilizing financial markets — which he did even though they were already stable once he entered office.

We could do this all day with AP stories. The head-shaking part is that most of these journalists don’t even see it. They have so come to equate the progressive, Democratic worldview with good journalism, they often cannot identify their own biases — which are blatant to the rest of us. 

Yet their overt biases are every bit as bad as the brand name Democratic/media organs, but even more influential. They’re just lost in the shadows.

Rod Thomson is an author, former journalist and current TV talking head, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.


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Wow. Vanity Fair Displays Astounding Ignorance About The Right

Rod Thomson

Most journalists live in insular bubbles of liberal LeftThink. But this was never more apparent than in a recent Vanity Fair article explaining the red-pilling of Kanye West.

That they seem utterly blind to their culturally provincial ignorance while writing with such grave authority is what makes it hilarious. Otherwise, it’s just tragic.

Of course it all starts because Kanye tweeted that he likes the way Candace Owens, a black conservative, thinks. Owens believes in personal responsibility and that blacks should not be stuck on the Democratic Party plantation. So naturally she is considered radical and controversial by the insular media.

Kanye has since gone on numerous tweet storms of independent thought, MAGA hats, Dilbert cartoonist Scott Adams, liberal artist John Legend and all sorts of strange nonsense, i.e. sharing “dragon energy” with Trump. It’s not that Kanye is suddenly a conservative or even a big Trump supporter. He’s clearly not.

Kanye’s real sin  — or contribution to broadened thinking — was independent, non-Democratic-approved thought by a black man. As we pointed out here, that is philosophically and electorally not allowed.

There have been many attempts by the insular media to discredit, attack and explain away Kanye’s independent thinking. But none rise to the level of sheer detachment from any understanding of the right, Trump supporters or the alt right (which has very little to do with the conservative right) as Tina Nguyen’s Vanity Fair article, “He’s Never Been Happier: Inside The Red-Pilling of Kanye West.”

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For those who do not know, red pill and its less popular opposite, blue pill, are memes derived from the movie The Matrix. They represent choices. Red pill represents choosing knowledge, freedom and sometimes brutal reality. Blue pill represents choosing security, happiness and blissful ignorance. Red pill is used in various forms on the right, but got a big push on Reddit and the alt right. But it is an ultimately conservative view.

The article is illustrative of the total lack of association with conservatives by so many in the national media.

Tina writes in regards to the Kanye tweets, “West’s liberal fans wondered if he was having a public breakdown, or was merely misinformed.” See, those are the only two options. Kanye needs to be re-educated in the correct way a black man should think.

Tina nonsense:

“According to sources I spoke to, West is a fan of Jordan Peterson, the controversial Canadian professor who has attracted a cult following of disaffected young men, and whose self-help philosophy has become something of a gateway drug for those flirting with the far right.”

Throughout this article, Tina lumps together under the “far right” Peterson, anti-Trumper Jonah Goldberg, atheist, mostly liberal Sam Harris, libertarian Steve Forbes, white supremacist Richard Spencer, former Google engineer James Damore, alt-right Trumper Mike Cernovich, Conservative Ben Shapiro, flamingly gay Milo, talk radio host Dennis Prager and anti-Tumper Bret Stephens. Wow. Obviously Tina does not know conservatives or Trumpers or the alt right. They all look about the same from her isolated perch. She just never rubs shoulders with them. (Granted, this is an assumption, but a pretty safe one.) They are oddities skulking around the hinterlands and the dark web.

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Jordan, who is hardly a doctrinaire conservative, is a proponent of personal responsibility and self-help. So while Canadian, that is about as historically archetypically American as possible. And, by the way, good parenting too. But to insulated leftist journalists such as Tina Nguyen, that is a “gateway drug for those flirting with the far right.”

First, personal responsibility is only “far right” if you are very far left. She clearly means it pejoratively. Personal responsibility and self-help, as opposed to government handouts, is a bad thing to a modern progressive leftist because they have fully embraced socialism. (As a concept, that is, not something to practice personally.)

Most Americans not on the far left see personal responsibility as a positive, something noble and right to be taught and sought after. So this is not necessarily about “disaffected men” but about seeking a higher way of living than suckling at the teets of government largesse. The detachment in the hall of Vanity Fair — and the rest of media — on this point is stark. But it gets worse.

More Tina nonsense:

“…the dragon energy in the far right has been supplanted by a nebulous ‘intellectual dark web’ comprised of right-wing pundits, agnostic comedian podcasters, self-help gurus, and disgruntled ex-liberals united by their desire to ‘red pill’ new adherents—breaking the spell of political correctness, as Neo’s eyes are opened in The Matrix.”

She sees this as a rag-tag band of disaffected misfits. Another way of looking at it is a broad, forming coalition pushing back against smothering, one-box-fits-all political correctness. PC is antithetical to free speech and free association. It is anti-Constitutional, anti-Founders and profoundly anti-American.

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This nebulous intellectual dark web is just a scare phrase. They are all right out there in the bright sunlight, except where the PC police on the left seek to quash their voices on social media, in normal media, on college campuses, in Silicon Valley, throughout government and everywhere else they can. Leftists really just cannot brook any disagreement. Stifling and totalitarian.

More Tina nonsense:

“‘I take it all back rap is great now,’ conservative pundit Ben Shapiro tweeted last week, reveling in the absurdity of the reversal.”

Of course, Shapiro was referring to Kanye’s free-thinking tweets. Shapiro is pretty well-known for despising rap. And he is tweeting this while laughing out loud. Guarantee it. It’s a joke! But when you are totally insulated from conservatives, or even moderates, you miss a lot. A lot.

Hilarious Tina:

“What unifies these disparate voices on PragerU, my sources tell me, is a sense that P.C. politics are fundamentally divisive and restrictive.”

She needed sources? She could just check Twitter, or Facebook, or Youtube or, shoot, just Google. But she had to use her sources to figure out the haps with the right. Work the shoe leather. Work the phones. Get those sources to explain this situation. This further goes to the isolation. She can’t just talk to conservative friends, or acquaintances or colleagues, because she obviously doesn’t know any. She actually has to develop sources and then secretly meet with them deep-throat style in a Washington parking garage to get the skinny.

Oy!

Rod Thomson is an author, TV talking head and former journalist, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.

Today’s news moves at a faster pace than ever, and a lot of sources are not trustworthy. Whatfinger.com  is my go-to source for keeping up with all the latest events in real time from good sources.

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Iran Journalism Korea Media Russia Trump Truth

Washington Post Blunders On Trump Foreign Policy

Rod Thomson

Washington Post Senior Political Reporter Aaron Blake recently wrote an article that was run in newspapers around the nation under, Trump’s Foreign Policy Chaos. In related news, a recent CNN Poll reported Trump’s approval rating at 42 percent while his disapproval stands at 54 percent.

These are related because one leads directly to the other, but both are wrong. Relentlessly negative reporting by the media leads its consumers by the nose into disapproving of the President. Partisan focus on Stormy Daniels and Russian collusion and other nonsense obfuscates the enormous successes of the presidency so far. Sure, his approvals are up a few points, but based on actual performance, they should be much higher.

However, just scoffing at this dynamic is a mistake. This drives elections. Conservative media must be just as relentless in getting out the truth about Trump successes, about conservative successes, about the traditional American successes. Because the other side, which definitively includes the traditional media, will push out the failures and misrepresent the successes.

The gist of Blake’s criticism (remember, he is labeled as reporter, not columnist or opinionist) is that Trump “can’t stick to a foreign policy script or even general guidelines.” This, of course, is a terrible breach of “the way things are done” for folks inside the Beltway. But Trump was elected to do things differently than the way they have been done.

Contrary to the impression given by Blake and the rest to those who imbibe oldstream reporting, the world is actually becoming a significantly better place since Donald Trump was elected and took foreign policy in a different direction.

This is just objectively true. It’s not blind Trump or Republican loyalty. The world is demonstrably better off in most every respect than when Obama left office — something Aaron Blake and his kin are simply unwilling or unable to see.

But we are.

So here are seven areas that have objectively improved since President Trump was elected in November 2016 and inaugurated in January 2017 — regardless of whether he followed script or not:

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✓ ISIS is decapitated. This bloody stain on the world arose in the vacuum left by President Obama’s foolish decision to abruptly withdraw American troops from Iraq before that country was able to stand on its own. His decision resulted in the rapid collapse of the infant democratic government in Iraq and the sweeping successes of ISIS.

ISIS’ sadistic methods for torturing and murdering anyone not pure enough in their version of Islam was spreading around the world, and the so-called caliphate was occupying large parts of two countries under Obama. It was the first and so far only actual terrorist nation — as opposed to those such as Iran, which is an existing nation that is considered a sponsor of terrorism.

Within a year of Trump’s inauguration, the caliphate was gone, and ISIS has almost no land holdings anymore. They have been relegated to the status of a terrorist organization, such as Al-Quaeda and dozens of others.

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✓ Russia is contained. During the Obama Administration, Russia greatly expanded its geographic reach and influence. It invaded and annexed Crimea and Obama did nothing. It’s proxies invaded Eastern Ukraine and Obama did nothing. It threatened the Baltic nations and Obama did nothing. It jumped into the breach left in the Middle East and re-established itself with its ally Syria in the midst of the nation’s terrible civil war, and Obama did nothing. Finally, Obama was aware of Russian attempts to influence the 2016 election, and he did nothing.

All of this came after Obama was infamously caught on a hot mic openly colluding with Russia against American interests by telling then-President Medvedev that Obama would have “more flexibility” after the 2012 elections.

Trump has twice now attacked Syrian government military installations after the use of banned chemical weapons, over the protests and threats of Russia and President Putin. He’s placed sanctions on Russian individuals and then on Russia as a whole after the blatant attempted chemical assassination in England. Putin has been much more restrained in his expansionist goals.

 

✓ North Korea is talking. This dangerous mess had been kicked down the road by several presidents, including Clinton, Bush and Obama. It always seemed a nasty bit of business with all sorts of dangers even before the North got nukes — specifically because China was an ally. So the world kept buying off the North with supplies for its starving population and resources for its nuclear program. They would have been easier to stop earlier, but none did. Now the North has larger nukes and much more advanced missile delivery systems and is more bellicose than ever.

However, that belligerence eased when Trump responded forcefully by telling the North that no aggression against America or her allies would be tolerated, and backed it up by sending two aircraft carrier groups to the region. Further, the North saw that this president did not make empty threats or draw red lines he would not back up. He’d already attacked Russian allies once, killing Russians in the process, and was reinforcing our allies in Eastern Europe.

The result is that for the first time, it appears the North is willing to have actual talks, not just blackmail sessions. Kim Jong Un crossed into South Korea for brief talks and requested to talk to Trump, who has agreed and already sent CIA Director Mike Pompeo to meet with the North. This is potentially huge.

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✓ China is re-negotiating. Part of the reason the North is willing to budge is also that Trump has been applying the screws to China on trade issues and this emerging power apparently does not want to get into a sanctions war and a military confrontation at the same time with the United States. China has long been violating our trade agreements — costing American jobs far beyond simply losing out to cheap labor — and shaking down American businesses as the price of entry.

Trump had enough. He immediately scrapped the trade deal that Obama had negotiated — which almost assuredly would have given away the store. And now he has instituted a round of tariffs on China for their trade practices. Think of this what you will, but despite their response of trade tariffs on the U.S., they are far more reliant on our market than we are on theirs and they know it. It sounds like they are willing to make some of the trade changes Trump wanted that are in America’s interest.

This foreign policy strategy bypasses the stuffed shirt, worthless trade organizations that were supposed to be policing these agreements but essentially let China do whatever it wanted. Obama would never even have thought to do what Trump has done.

 

✓ Allies are ponying up. Obama, as did Bush and Clinton before him, talked about making our allies pay more of their fair share of the military burden of protecting Europe and the Pacific Rim. But as usual, particularly with Obama, it was all fine-sounding hot air. He did nothing.

Trump campaigned on this issue, as he did trade, and he jumped right in suggesting that if France, England, Germany and others cannot contribute the share they are contractually obligated to contribute for their own defense, then perhaps the United States would not continue to be a part of NATO. This was considered outlandishly irresponsible and proof of the Russian collusion, which we dispelled above, or just Trump idiocy. The intelligentsia have been remarkably consistent in judging Trump wrongly.

Sure enough, a strong hand that is backed by strong actions appear to have prevailed. Our NATO allies, and even Japan, are already beginning to spend more on their own military. This is not only fair, it makes the free nations stronger in that they are not as totally reliant on the U.S. military.

 

✓ Iran is confronted. Obama made what will go down in history as one of the worst agreements ever (still unsigned by both nations) by giving Iran everything from a pathway to sanctioned nuclear weapons in 10 years to literally a planeload of cash and unfrozen assets that were quickly put to use funding its proxy terrorists in Hezbollah. Just incredibly irresponsible and a direct threat to Israel and America.

Trump has not ripped it up yet, but he gave our allies deadlines of May 12 to toughen up the agreement with Iran or we will let American sanctions “snap back” in. Further, recent personnel changes in the administration will put back on the table the entire elimination of the agreement.

Iran is the most destabilizing power in the fiery region and an official state sponsor of terrorism. The deal was a huge setback to peace and fighting terrorism and Trump is pushing back hard on it. Considering his actions in regard to Syria, Russia and North Korea, the Iranian Mullahs will be weighing carefully how confrontative they want to be with this president.

 

✓ Iraq and Afghanistan stabilizing. This is huge for the region, and for Americans who have fought and bled for so long under substandard White House leadership. The defeat of ISIS and the pushback on the Taliban has allowed two long-time problem countries to stabilize, at least temporarily. Plenty of problems remain, but neither are as capable of training and sending out terrorists as they were and this is good for everyone.

Trump’s list of successes domestically is also more impressive than generally credited — unless of course you don’t like tax cuts that help all Americans and goose the economy; or judges who rule on the Constitution rather than political whims; or a return of manufacturing jobs; or fewer strangling, bureaucratic regulations. But that is another article.

Suffice to say that the critics who claimed — and in the face of all this evidence, continue to claim — that Trump is a stupid bungler unqualified to deal with foreign policy…are dead wrong. Reality is showing that style aside, Obama actually fits that description far better than Trump.

Rod Thomson is an author, TV talking head and former journalist, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.


Today’s news moves at a faster pace than ever, and a lot of sources are not trustworthy. Whatfinger.com  is my go-to source for keeping up with all the latest events in real time from good sources.


 

Categories
Journalism Media Progressives Truth

Two USA Today Reporters Hit DefCon One Level Political Correctness

Rod Thomson

Political correctness is a disease on the body public in America, stifling open debate, conversation and the free exchange of differing viewpoints. It dominates on college campuses like a mid-20th century tyrant, but as more graduates who have deeply imbibed the dangerous nonsense move into positions of influence, political correctness expands to more of our culture, our being.

PC is one of the driving reasons behind the launch of The Revolutionary Act. As George Orwell said in 1984, “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.” Politically correct speech resulting in written and de facto speech codes is setting the table for a universality of deceitfulness.

So in today’s installment, we come to a pair of young USA Today reporters who went through hit songs from past years to explain how terribly offensive their lyrics are now — and of course always were but we just weren’t woke enough. Conceptually, their retroactive judgy-ness is bad enough. But, like all of PC, it is applied selectively.  

In the headline to their Orwellian RightThink story, they don’t even hide it: “20 politically incorrect songs that’d be wildly controversial today.”

The indictments range from hyper-sexualized Rolling Stones songs (which, ironically, makes them strange bedfellows with conservative Christians who criticized the songs then and now) to Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder to still popular singers such as Katy Perry and Taylor Swift. Because in the end, nothing will pass PC muster unless it is so vanilla it says nothing the speech police deem unsayable. Conspicuously missing from this list are any rap songs — some of the most vile filth being spewed into music today — which points to the selectivity of PC.

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Perhaps the most astonishing song on our reporters’ list is Ebony And Ivory, by McCartney and Wonder. What could possibly be so offensive in a song promoting the idea of people of different races living together in harmony? Let’s ask the PC police. Here’s their problematic lyric and explanation:

Choice lyric: “Ebony and ivory / Live together in perfect harmony / Side by side on my piano keyboard / Oh lord, why don’t we?”

Why it wouldn’t fly today: McCartney and Wonder meant well with their hyper-literal interpretation of race relations. But their message of “people are the same, there’s good and bad in everyone, so let’s just get along” would be interpreted as hilariously naïve by the more woke factions of today’s cultural discourse.

Your first response is to dismiss this as the vapid nonsense coming from the hell-hole of intersectional RightThink. Resist that temptation. Because what these propagandized reporters are saying is that people are not all the same and we can’t get along. Racial harmony is naive nonsense now to the PC crowd. This is really alarming stuff. And from First Amendment-protected reporters no less!

Here’s another offender.

Song:Turning Japanese by The Vapors, 1980

Choice lyric: “I’m turning Japanese, I think I’m turning Japanese”

Why it wouldn’t fly today: No, Turning Japanese isn’t literally about turning Japanese. Still, it wouldn’t be acceptable today to hear a group of white guys assuming the identity of Asian people.

This song was about the angst of young coming of age in a changing culture. Just basic life. It wasn’t anti-Japanese or racist in any way, as our thought monitoring journalists admit. Their problem stems from the sheer nonsense that a member of one culture cannot assimilate into or even appreciate another culture. Their philosophy rests on tribalism at its worst, which is very much revived in modern, progressive intersectionality.

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Cultural appropriation is the conceptual opposite of the melting pot that has formed America for two centuries. People immigrated (legally) to our shores from all over the world. They retained elements of their heritage and were proud, but they melted into the larger American ideal based on freedoms and rights and hope for a better life.

Identity politics and cultural appropriation force every immigrant, ethnicity, race, gender and fictional gender into separate categories. Intersectionality than ranks them by degree of grievance. All logic, rational thought and history are pitched out the window in favor of those with the most grievance. More grievance, more truth, no matter how ridiculous a statement.

Here’s one more.

Song: Illegal Alien by Genesis, 1983

Choice lyric: “It’s no fun being an illegal alien”

Why it wouldn’t fly today: Its message and story are seemingly well-intentioned, detailing a Mexican immigrant’s struggle to cross the border in search of a better life. But the racist video puts the song in a whole different light, with stereotypical imagery of mariachi horns, ponchos, sombreros and oversize mustaches.

Here we have a very early example of defending and uplifting the plight of illegal aliens. Oh, but in the video, they represented a Mexican as a guy with a big sombrero and a thick mustache. Das is verboten! You see, that’s both ethnically insensitive and cultural appropriation — despite the lyrics being positive about people sneaking into our country illegally.

Here are some songs that did not make the list from the rap genre.

Nope. Can’t do it. After just minimal research, not going to print any of it. From gang rape, to graphic sex, to violence and everywhere dehumanizing women, rap is a smorgasbord of filth and degradation. Yet our USA Today reporters include none of it.

So who are these two intrepid reporters writing for the largest national newspaper in America?

Maeve McDermott is, according to how she describes herself on Twitter: entertainment writer/editor @USATODAY • very baller, very anarchist •  So she comes out of a journalism school, presumably, which would be part of the problem, but certainly out of college, another problem, and proudly proclaims herself an anarchist. And USA Today thinks, We need to hire her!

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Patrick Ryan is an entertainment reporter for @USATODAY, @Cronkite_ASU ’14 grad. His Twitter banner pic says. “Manchesta by the feckin sea”

These two youngsters represent a sort of vanguard of the wave of hyper-offended, PC speech totalitarians who are pouring into journalism, the arts, the social sciences, government positions and the teaching profession.

Rod Thomson is an author, TV talking head and former journalist, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.


Today’s news moves at a faster pace than ever, and a lot of sources are not trustworthy. Whatfinger.com  is my go-to source for keeping up with all the latest events in real time from good sources.


 

Categories
College Journalism Race relations Racism Truth

Racist Poison Is Being Injected Into Journalism Students

Rod Thomson

While we were working as a nation to cleanse the American body of the poison of racism against blacks — a long, painful endeavor that was finally finding considerable success in the latter half of the 20th century — a different poison was being introduced into the body: racism against whites. Full out, white people are inherently, genetically evil racism.

That statement may have sounded extreme a few years ago. No more. It is mainstreaming now right under our noses and, like so many damaging ideas of recent years, it is flowering among the leftists that oppress our nation’s college campuses.

And few schools on our college campuses are as open to radicalism as the schools of mass communication, which still churn out journalists by the tens of thousands under faculty imprinted groupthink.

So it was no surprise that the University of California’s USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism recently displayed a large banner entitled “Dismantle Whiteness and Misogyny.” Make no mistake. This is supported by the faculty radicals — radicals by normal American standards, but not by university standards.

Communications Professor Alison Trope told The College Fix that the mural’s wildly racist content is designed to spark a dialogue — a favorite euphemism of the left for attacking those who disagree — as though there has been no dialogue on the topic in this country.

Further, Trope, who teaches the next generation of journalists, said: “To that end, the signage is meant to offer grounding of terms and ideas.”

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Grounding. So for Trope and the rest, the grounding for this idea is not the high ideals that all people are created in the image of God, and all people have inalienable rights granted by God which cannot be destroyed by man. No, the “grounding” is that whiteness is a blot on America and whites by dint of being white institutionalized organizing principles of racial oppression.

Further, it is supported by journo students, too.

Here’s an example. Students told the Daily Trojan that the mural should have been in a much more visible part of campus. “It wasn’t disruptive enough in my environment,” senior communication major Claire Porter told the paper. She’ll be fairly and objectively reporting your news next year.

The artists, When Women Disrupt, who did the mural do these all over the country. This is from the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism Facebook page:

When Women Disrupt (WWD) is an art collective, who in collaboration with students from the USC Annenberg class “Women: Designing Media for Social Change,” presented their pieces, led workshops and became part of a larger conversation about race, intersectionality and misogyny. Other keywords and topics discussed the subjectivity of “whiteness,” a term discussed among WWD –– which refers to an organizing principle that shapes institutions, policies and social relations.

One of the lasting highlights was a body of art work they created in dialogue with students which is featured on the walls of the entrance of the east lobby of the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. The intent was to spark conversation and dialogue – and encourage reflection and critical thinking.

The work was sponsored by the Institute for Diversity and Empowerment (IDEA) and USC Visions and Voices.

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They pretty clearly state that whiteness is an organizing principle shaping life — for white people. If they mean the tribalism that is easy to fall into for many groups of people, including but not limited to race, then sure. But they don’t. They mean white people, specifically. This is openly racist. Here is more from a flyer the group hands out:

“WWD’s intention is to provoke greater discussion and thinking about the institutionalized and everyday systems of power and representation that reinforce racism, patriarchy, and inequality.”

Remember, on the Facebook page they posit that whiteness “refers to an organizing principle that shapes institutions” and then on their flyer they talk about “institutionalized” racism. This is not hard. Whiteness, inherent obviously among white people, institutionalizes racism. The fact that such institutions are not named — except sometimes “the police,” but then never with specificity beyond an individual incident, which by definition is not institutional — and no evidence is offered, does not stop the continued repetition of this falsity as truth.

The clear meaning is that white people are genetically racist. This actually aligns with what Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan has been saying for decades — that white people are “devils.” He is one of the worst people in terms of spewing hatred while continually being given a platform among the left, including the Congressional Black Caucus, not to mention, Facebook and Youtube.

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The artists that are part of When Women Disrupt portray their clearly racist work around the country and are comfortable on college campuses. Are they just extremists? Less all the time. They have been featured in such major media publications as New York Times, Huffington Post, CNN, NPR, New York Magazine, MSNBC, Time magazine, Fast Company and more. That’s a lot of mostly glowing coverage.

It’s not really surprising that these people and their overt racism would be welcome not just on college campuses, but in schools of journalism. Because journalists are increasingly leftist activists. They are being trained to be just that as they exit with their degrees and head to newspapers, networks and online media sites nationwide. They imbibe, absorb and promulgate this racist poison. It’s hard to see how that changes since they are birthed into the system this way. They equate all of this leftist racism with good journalism.

This is unbelievably dangerous territory, and definitively explains the attraction for too many to the return to tribalism that animates the alt right. There was no alt right to speak of 10 to 15 years ago. They are a reactionary grouping. And if they fade, others more dangerous will rise in this environment.

Because racism inevitably begets more racism. It is a vicious, bloody, hateful cycle that we were breaking in this country, and that the left is re-inserting.

Rod Thomson is an author, TV talking head and former journalist, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.


Today’s news moves at a faster pace than ever, and a lot of sources are not trustworthy. Whatfinger.com  is my go-to source for keeping up with all the latest events in real time from good sources.


 

Categories
Constitution Journalism Truth

Journalist Protection Act Is Dangerous Anti-Trump Circus

Rod Thomson

Several Democrats in Congress have introduced the Journalist Protection Act, essentially because the President says mean things about them. But there’s also a nefariousness to this sort of law.

Ostensibly, backers argue that journalists are in more danger than ever  — presumably excepting those that are war correspondents or live in repressive regimes that account for most of the world — and its all because President Trump calls them “fake news” and criticizes them by name.

Yes, that is pretty much the argument, along with some very iffy numbers that even with their iffy-ness seem particularly small and inconsequential compared to the proposed federal government intrusion.

California Democrat Rep. Eric Swalwell, who wrote the bill with more than a dozen Democrat co-sponsors, told CNN — where would he find a friendlier outlet? — the bill is designed to protect “journalists in every corner of our country if they are attacked physically while doing their job.” His bill would make it a federal crime to cause bodily harm to a journalist while he or she goes about reporting.

Further, and more to the political point of the bill, Swalwell accused Trump of creating a “toxic atmosphere,” emboldening people (read: reckless, angry Trump supporters) to attack members of the press. “I really wish I didn’t have to introduce this, but we have seen rhetoric from the president declaring the media as the ‘enemy of the state,’” Swalwell said.

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Threats against the media is actually nothing new.

When I was a newspaper columnist, I had plenty of threats. Twice I had death threats — both related to me writing about gay issues. It never occurred to me that I should have special, extra protections that say, a prosecutor, a social worker or a 7-11 clerk does not have. Extra protections for certain people is almost always a bad idea, just as hate crimes are a terrible and dangerous idea when the actual actions are already crimes.

Speaking on an ABC panel on this topic, employment lawyer Sara Blackwell said the bill is unnecessary and in violation of the 10th Amendment’s enumerated powers clause. “The states do make it a crime to hurt journalists. Each state has assault, battery, harassment, threatening laws, all of those kinds of crimes against anyone.” She said it looked more like a “Trump smear campaign.”

The 10th Amendment reads: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

Criminal law and law enforcement is the province of the states under the 10th amendment. There are very few exceptions. In fact, if this bill were ever passed and signed into law — which it most certainly will not be — it would very likely be struck down as unconstitutional.

And the numbers do not suggest there is any real problem for the basic American journalist.

The Freedom Press Tracker, which the Congressman and CNN referenced to show the violence, reports that there were 44 attacks against U.S. journalists while they were doing their job in 2017. There is no context as to previous year’s levels of attacks, as it appears this organization just popped up last year — coincidentally when Trump took office, not when Obama was bugging AP offices in Baltimore or threatening Fox News reporter James Rosin or journalists were being mugged in St. Louis.

Further, the Freedom Press Tracker numbers include 13 journalists who said they were falsely arrested, plus those hit by rubber bullets, tear gas, pepper spray and so on during riots. So, probably incidental. It also includes aggressive video bloggers. One “journalist” named “Rebelutionary Z” shows up multiple times in the 44 count at different demonstrations in different cities. Draw your own conclusions there. This means that the acts of targeted violence for political reasons in 2017 were virtually nil.

Globally, however, its a different story.

About 70 journalists were killed last year around the world while conducting journalism and about 262 were imprisoned in connection with their journalistic work.

Zero from either category were in the United States.

Because there is no problem. There’s just anti-Trump politics.

Rod Thomson is an author, TV talking head and former journalist, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.


Today’s news moves at a faster pace than ever, and a lot of sources are not trustworthy. Whatfinger.com  is my go-to source for keeping up with all the latest events in real time from good sources.