We want to remind our US young adults and new immigrant citizens faced with nothing but NGO and media propaganda -----this article from GLOBAL AMAZON.COM BEZOS and far-right wing global banking 1% Bush neo-con YALE-----is using academic research to create dis-information.
The US last century was right wing conservative Republican =====and left wing social progressive liberal. US Republicans have always worked to make the rich richer-----they create economic structures where only that few percent control all the revenue as here in Baltimore.
Last century's REAL left social progressive liberals worked hard to broaden that economy and access to revenue by expanding free market economies to small and regional business owners keeping corporations from attaining MONOPOLIES.
When REAGAN/CLINTON came into power in 1980s-90s----REAGAN's job as a global banking 1% player pol was to capture the right wing conservative Republican Party to ------ONE WORLD ONE GOVERNANCE for only the global 1% ---CONSERVING all US economic revenue away from US rich to GLOBAL RICH. Still conserving------only goodbye US rich. What was right wing conservative Republican became Bush far-right wing global rich conservative neo-conservative.
Clinton's job as global banking 1% player was to do the same to US Democratic Party-----Clinton took our REAL left social progressive liberalism for 99% of WE THE PEOPLE and made it global banking 1% NEO-LIBERALISM pushing out US 99% to bring in global 1% and their 2%---calling THAT progressive liberalism.
Of course Bush neo-cons and Clinton neo-liberalism is the SAME-----ONE PARTY FOR GLOBAL 1% having all economic and revenue in US cities/states deemed FOREIGN ECONOMIC ZONES.
AND AT THIS SAME TIME US POLLING CORPORATIONS SOARED WITH FAKE STATS TO CREATE FAKE SOCIAL NORMS
'But we also need to recognize how much they can be influenced subconsciously by our most basic, powerful motivations for safety and survival. Politicians on both sides of the aisle know this already and attempt to manipulate our votes and party allegiances by appealing to these potent feelings of fear and of safety'.
In all FAKE far-right wing authoritarian dictatorship DEMOCRACIES, third world nations children are indeed taught to come out to vote the ONE PARTY LINE.......the DUTY to vote becomes voting for the least worst candidate as today in US CLINTON/BUSH/OBAMA ----now TRUMP
'A political scientist has discovered a surprising way to increase voter turnout. It starts in childhood'.
At Yale, we conducted an experiment to turn conservatives into liberals. The results say a lot about our political divisions.
by John Bargh November 22, 2017
When my daughter was growing up, she often wanted to rush off to do fun things with her friends — get into the water at the beach, ride off on her bike — without taking the proper safety precautions first. I’d have to stop her in her tracks to first put on the sunscreen, or her bike helmet and knee pads, with her standing there impatiently. “Safety first, fun second,” was my mantra.
Keeping ourselves and our loved ones safe from harm is perhaps our strongest human motivation, deeply embedded in our very DNA. It is so deep and important that it influences much of what we think and do, maybe more than we might expect. For example, over a decade now of research in political psychology consistently shows that how physically threatened or fearful a person feels is a key factor — although clearly not the only one — in whether he or she holds conservative or liberal attitudes.
[A political scientist has discovered a surprising way to increase voter turnout. It starts in childhood.]
Conservatives, it turns out, react more strongly to physical threat than liberals do. In fact, their greater concern with physical safety seems to be determined early in life: In one University of California study, the more fear a 4-year-old showed in a laboratory situation, the more conservative his or her political attitudes were found to be 20 years later. Brain imaging studies have even shown that the fear center of the brain, the amygdala, is actually larger in conservatives than in liberals. And many other laboratory studies have found that when adult liberals experienced physical threat, their political and social attitudes became more conservative (temporarily, of course). But no one had ever turned conservatives into liberals.
Until we did.
In a new study to appear in a forthcoming issue of the European Journal of Social Psychology, my colleagues Jaime Napier, Julie Huang and Andy Vonasch and I asked 300 U.S. residents in an online survey their opinions on several contemporary issues such as gay rights, abortion, feminism and immigration, as well as social change in general. The group was two-thirds female, about three-quarters white, with an average age of 35. Thirty-percent of the participants self-identified as Republican, and the rest as Democrat.
But before they answered the survey questions, we had them engage in an intense imagination exercise. They were asked to close their eyes and richly imagine being visited by a genie who granted them a superpower. For half of our participants, this superpower was to be able to fly, under one’s own power. For the other half, it was to be completely physically safe, invulnerable to any harm.
If they had just imagined being able to fly, their responses to the social attitude survey showed the usual clear difference between Republicans and Democrats — the former endorsed more conservative positions on social issues and were also more resistant to social change in general.
But if they had instead just imagined being completely physically safe, the Republicans became significantly more liberal — their positions on social attitudes were much more like the Democratic respondents. And on the issue of social change in general, the Republicans’ attitudes were now indistinguishable from the Democrats. Imagining being completely safe from physical harm had done what no experiment had done before — it had turned conservatives into liberals.
In both instances, we had manipulated a deeper underlying reason for political attitudes, the strength of the basic motivation of safety and survival. The boiling water of our social and political attitudes, it seems, can be turned up or down by changing how physically safe we feel.
This is why it makes sense that liberal politicians intuitively portray danger as manageable — recall FDR’s famous Great Depression era reassurance of “nothing to fear but fear itself,” echoed decades later in Barack Obama’s final State of the Union address -- and why President Trump and other Republican politicians are instead likely to emphasize the dangers of terrorism and immigration, relying on fear as a motivator to gain votes.
In fact, anti-immigration attitudes are also linked directly to the underlying basic drive for physical safety. For centuries, arch-conservative leaders have often referred to scapegoated minority groups as “germs” or “bacteria” that seek to invade and destroy their country from within. President Trump is an acknowledged germaphobe, and he has a penchant for describing people — not only immigrants but political opponents and former Miss Universe contestants — as “disgusting.”
“Immigrants are like viruses” is a powerful metaphor, because in comparing immigrants entering a country to germs entering a human body, it speaks directly to our powerful innate motivation to avoid contamination and disease. Until very recently in human history, not only did we not have antibiotics, we did not even know how infections occurred or diseases transmitted, and cuts and open wounds were quite dangerous. (In the American Civil War, for example, 60 out of every 1,000 soldiers died not by bullets or bayonets, but by infections.)
Therefore, we reasoned, making people feel safer about a dangerous flu virus should serve to calm their fears about immigrants — and making them feel more threatened by the flu virus should cause them to be more against immigration than they were before. In a 2011 study, my colleagues and I showed just that. First, we reminded our nationwide sample of liberals and conservatives about the threat of the flu virus (during the H1N1 epidemic), and then measured their attitudes toward immigration. Afterward we simply asked them if they’d already gotten their flu shot or not. It turned out that those who had not gotten a flu shot (feeling threatened) expressed more negative attitudes toward immigration, while those who had received the vaccination (feeling safe) had more positive attitudes about immigration.
In another study, using hand sanitizer after being warned about the flu virus had the same effect on immigration attitudes as had being vaccinated. A simple squirt of Purell after we had raised the threat of the flu had changed their minds. It made them feel safe from the dangerous virus, and this made them feel socially safe from immigrants as well.
Our study findings may have a silver lining. Here’s how:
All of us believe that our social and political attitudes are based on good reasons and reflect our important values. But we also need to recognize how much they can be influenced subconsciously by our most basic, powerful motivations for safety and survival. Politicians on both sides of the aisle know this already and attempt to manipulate our votes and party allegiances by appealing to these potent feelings of fear and of safety.
Instead of allowing our strings to be pulled so easily by others, we can become more conscious of what drives us and work harder to base our opinions on factual knowledge about the issues, including information from outside our media echo chambers. Yes, our views can harden given the right environment, but our work shows that they are actually easier to change than we might think
We shared yesterday an example of a US academic journal called AMERICAN AFFAIRS having an author WEN FANG TANG-------writing as a new Chinese American citizens how Chinese authoritarian capitalism was that good model that almost all 99% of Chinese citizens loved. This article brought in the same POLLING CORPORATION FAKE STATS with Chinese media and US media printing these FAKE POLLING STATS creating the idea these brutal repressive regimes are loved by the 99% of citizens. That is how all far-right wing authoritarian regimes work. That is what CLINTON/BUSH/OBAMA and MOVING FORWARD had done these few decades. National media every year would print FAKE POLLS telling global citizens that US 99% LOVED BILL CLINTON---LOVED GEORGE BUSH----LOVED OBAMA---AND WE ALL LOVE HILLARY CLINTON.
That is no doubt why a super-majority of US citizens in both right wing and left wing DO NOT VOTE.
But as this YALE ARTICLE stated----WE HAVE WAYS OF MAKING PEOPLE WANT TO VOTE.
Spring 2018 / Volume II, Number 1
The “Surprise” of Authoritarian Resilience in China
By Wenfang Tang AMERICAN AFFAIRS
Ever since the domino collapse of Communist regimes in the Soviet Bloc in the late 1980s and early 1990s, the world has been waiting for China to follow suit. Indeed, the fall of the Chinese Communist government would probably mean the real end of history given the size of the country.
The author WEN FANG TANG writing for AMERICAN AFFAIRS from what we are sure is a GLOBAL HEDGE FUND IVY LEAGUE CORPORATION HARVARD is of course that global 1% and their 2% filling GREATER BOSTON ----just as happened in GREATER SAN FRAN-----just as happened in GREATER LOS ANGELES----just as is happening in GREATER CHICAGO-----coming now to our MID-SIZE US cities.
TANG FAMILY are those CHINESE KINGS AND QUEENS------WEN FAMILY are those top national Chinese politburo MILLIONAIRES NOW BILLIONAIRES. We are sure Mr. Wen Fang Tang wants to sell moving back to DARK AGES CHINA.
Wen Fong Edwards S. Sanford Professor of Art History Emeritus---GLOBAL HEDGE FUND IVY LEAGUE CORPORATION-----PRINCETON
'The Tang Dynasty, China's Golden Age of Poetrywww.chinahighlights.com/.../the-tang-dynasty.htm
The Tang Dynasty (618–907) was the second largest and longest-enduring empire in China. It flourished culturally for over a century before decline began'.
'But now 90, the prime minister’s mother, Yang Zhiyun, not only left poverty behind, she became outright rich, at least on paper, according to corporate and regulatory records. Just one investment in her name, in a large Chinese financial services company, had a value of $120 million five years ago, the records show.
The details of how Ms. Yang, a widow, accumulated such wealth are not known, or even if she was aware of the holdings in her name. But it happened after her son was elevated to China’s ruling elite, first in 1998 as vice prime minister and then five years later as prime minister.
Many relatives of Wen Jiabao',
ALTERNET is a raging far-right wing global banking % neo-liberal media outlet here showing our EARLY ROBBER BARON PRESIDENT ----Jimmy Carter---that OLD WORLD GLOBAL 1% KINGS AND QUEENS freemason pretending to be religious.
THE NEW WORLD ORDER IS AS GOOD AS DONE SAYS THIS FAKE 5% RELIGIOUS LEADER FREEMASON/GREEK-----well, again this is all propaganda. You know global banking 1% are nervous when national media sell what they called for decades CONSPIRACY THEORY as a done deal.
Jimmy Carter Fears America's Transformation From Democracy to Oligarchy Is All but Complete
The former president sounds off on the NRA, the Mueller investigation and more.
By Leslie Salzillo / DailyKos
March 30, 2018, 7:20 AM GMT
At 93, former President Jimmy Carter is out promoting his 32nd book titled Faith: A Journey For All while taking interviews with various news groups along the way. This week, Judy Woodruff with PBS interviewed Carter in a two-part series. Here are excerpts from the first and second discussions.
In regard to the recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida, and the March For Our Lives, Woodruff asks Carter if he thinks laws will change given the passion of the young people leading the way today.
I do. I think they have already shown their ability to change legislation in Florida. I think the arousing of young people all over the country, which they did this past weekend, is a good indication that they will have a permanent — more permanent effect on the — counteracting the NRA’s false premises...I think, if anybody can do it, these young people, if they stick with it — I think the NRA is facing the greatest challenge that it has in the last 15 or 20 years.
When Woodruff asked Carter his thoughts on the state of the country, the 39th U.S. president said:
We now have a development in America where the massive influx of money into campaigns has elevated rich people, powerful people above the average person.
So, we are moving toward an oligarchy of a powerful element of rich people compared to a true democracy.
And I think the other thing, besides the massive amount of money we have put into elections, is the gerrymandering of districts, which guarantees a continued polarization of people.
We have a situation now where people who are in power impose a lot of punishment on unfortunate people. We have seven times as many people in prison now as we did when I left the White House, for instance. We have got a much greater disparity of income among Americans than we have ever had before.
In fact, eight people in the world — six of them are from America — own as much money as half of the total population of the world, 3.5 billion people.
In America, we have the same problem, maybe even in an exaggerated way. We have marginalized the average person, for the benefit of the wealthier people in America.
A little further down in the interview, Woodruff asks Carter to rate Donald Trump’s performance during these last 14 months.
I don’t think he’s doing well.
He’s made some very serious mistakes. I think the worst mistake he’s made so far has been the appointment of John Bolton to be his national security adviser.
I know Bolton from way back at a distance. I have never met him personally. But he has been very eager to go to war with different people, including North Korea and Iran. He’s been in the forefront of every kind of radical enhancement the United States can make based on its own military prowess. He’s — he’s told lies about things where I knew the truth. And so I just have very little confidence in him.
I’m not singling him out. But I think that I would get along quite well with General McMaster, and I was grieved to see him go. I have been talking to him several times about the North Korean situation.
So, I think now he’s surrounding himself, as everyone knows, with people who just agree with him almost entirely.
When Woodruff asked Carter about the Mueller investigation, the former president seems to be getting a little impatient—like many around the country and world.
Well, I think he will finish his work, regardless of what I think.
I just wish that he would finish his work earlier, rather than later, so that we could see if there is anything legally to be brought forward about President Trump and his involvement in the 2016 election, because I think the future of the politics in America is dependent on what Mueller will have come forward to allege.
And so I think, the longer this is postponed, the more damage we might see done, including with the issues that I have already described, that is, the nuclear weaponry and altercations with Iran and with — and with North Korea and also with the global environment.
So, I think the sooner the Mueller that makes his report, the better off the country will be, one way or the other.
The above are only a few of the many discussions in the extensive Judy Woodruff-Jimmy Carter interview. Videos, audios and full transcripts are available on the PBS news website.
You can buy Jimmy Carter’s new book on the Simon and Schuster website, Amazon, Barnes and Noble ... Carter, a man of strong faith who walks the talk, says his new book, Faith: And The Journey For All encapsulates his deep feelings about his religion and his background in politics, peace and human rights—and truth and integrity.
Loved and admired globally, Jimmy Carter is a humanitarian, peacemaker, Democratic diplomat and national treasure. Some would call him a world treasure. Thank you, President Carter, for continuing to show America and the world how leaders lead.
Let's return to the major national media corporations and the merging to ONE WORLD ONE GLOBAL TECHNOLOGY COMMUNICATIONS corporation------while our global banking 1% Clinton neo-liberals and Bush neo-cons PRETEND they are still US right wing Republicans and left wing Democrats.
We have discussed during week's long media policy the situation with only a few of global media corporations having enfolded all of what was America's broad FREE PRESS, RADIO, TV et al. Sinclair recently gobbled all of TRIBUNE NEWSPAPERS which includes most major US cities deemed Foreign Economic Zones. Sinclair is the SMITH FAMILY one of the OLD WORLD EUROPEAN global banking 1%.
We see the reason CNN has become ENTERTAINMENT TONIGHT in being raging FAKE NEWS with MSNBC-----tied to TIME/WARNER/DISNEY. Time magazine has been America's top far-right wing global banking corporate news journal these several decades. It's covers are always highlighting who the movers and shakers are for global corporate profit. TIME/WARNER is the new owners of CNN as CNN went to tabloid news.
So, the problem is not SINCLAIR NEWS-----or TIME WARNER owning CNN----the problem is the GOAL of MOVING FORWARD----ONE WORLD ONE TECHNOLOGY GRID PROVIDING ONE COMMUNICATIONS CORPORATION. We shout against GLOBAL COMMONER CORE as that captured source of K-university education -----this same structure taking all communications and media-----
looking more like GLOBAL GOOGLE MEETS GLOBAL HEDGE FUND IVY LEAGUE COMMONER CORE.
GLOBAL UNITED NATIONS---TED-X is replacing Western nations' public media as BBC and NPR------as GLOBAL GOOGLE controls all information online with social media like FACEBOOK and TWITTER disappearing.
This is Sinclair, 'the most dangerous US company you've never heard of'Sinclair is the largest broadcast company in America.
But its partisan politics – and connections to the White House – are raising concerns
@lucia_graves Thu 17 Aug 2017 07.00 EDT Last modified on Mon 27 Nov 2017 13.23 EST
Sinclair’s size, rightwing politics and close connections to Donald Trump’s White House are starting to attract attention.
Photograph: Rob DobiMost Americans don’t know it exists. Primetime US news refers to it as an “under-the-radar company”. Unlike Fox News and Rupert Murdoch, virtually no one outside of business circles could name its CEO. And yet, Sinclair Media Group is the owner of the largest number of TV stations in America.
“Sinclair’s probably the most dangerous company most people have never heard of,” said Michael Copps, the George W Bush-appointed former chairman of Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the top US broadcast regulator.
John Oliver – host of HBO’s weekly satirical show Last Week Tonight – used a similar line when he introduced an 18-minute segment on Sinclair last month by referring to it as “maybe the most influential media company you never heard of”.
But that is beginning to change. Sinclair’s size, rightwing politics and close connections to Donald Trump’s White House are starting to attract attention. Democrats are wading in to the fray and demanding answers over Sinclair’s close ties to the Trump administration, which, they say, could mean the group is getting preferential treatment.
The New York Times refers to the group as a “conservative giant” that, since the Bush presidency, has used its 173 television stations “to advance a mostly right-leaning agenda”. The Washington Post describes it as a “company with a long history of favoring conservative causes and candidates on its stations’ newscasts”.
More recently, Sinclair has added a website, Circa, to its portfolio. But not any old website. Circa has been described as “the new Breitbart” and a favorite among White House aides who wish to platform news to a friendly source (a process otherwise known as “leaking”). As the US news site the Root put it: “What if Breitbart and Fox News had a couple of babies? What if they grew up to be a cool, slicker version of their parents and started becoming more powerful? Meet Sinclair and Circa –Donald Trump’s new besties.”
The growing anxiety in America over the rise of Sinclair stems from the belief the company’s close connections to Trump have allowed it to skirt market regulations. Already the biggest broadcaster in the country, Sinclair is poised to make its biggest move yet. If the FCC approves Sinclair’s $3.9bn purchase of an additional 42 stations, it would reach into the homes of almost three-quarters of Americans.
Another cause for concern, and increased scrutiny, is what’s seen as the company’s pronounced political agenda. Sinclair forces its local stations to run pro-Trump “news” segments. In April, they hired Boris Epshteyn, a former Trump campaign spokesman and member of the White House press office, as its chief political analyst. His “must-run” 10-minute political commentary segments unsurprisingly hewed closely to the Trump administration’s message. The news and analysis website Slate, referring to Epshteyn’s contributions, said: “As far as propaganda goes, this is pure, industrial-strength stuff.”
Some local stations have reportedly chafed at the idea of pro-Trump “must run” packages. Sinclair’s management says the packages are necessary to provide viewers with diverse viewpoints as a counterweight to progressive leanings they’re convinced are held by the media, including the staff of their own local stations. “Ninety-nine-point-nine percent of the media is left of center,” David Smith, then Sinclair’s CEO, told Rolling Stone in 2005.
LEFT OF CENTER MEANS FAR-RIGHT WING GLOBAL BANKING 1% CLINTON NEO-LIBERAL-----DAVID SMITH AS A MEDIA OWNER GIVING FAKE NEWS.
But Sinclair’s politics isn’t restricted to Epshteyn’s contributions. It has a long history of airing material which has often been controversial, and for which it has been sanctioned in the past – all the while purporting to simply report the “news”.
While it doesn’t have the cultural cachet of major conservative networks like Fox News, Sinclair’s influence is more subtle. Unlike Fox News, which brands itself clearly and proudly, most viewers of Sinclair’s local stations have no idea who owns them since they are not branded as part of the Sinclair network.
But it is their intended purchase of a collection of new stations owned by Tribune Media – the former owners of the illustrious Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times – that has thrust them into the national spotlight unlike ever before.
“It used to be a few years ago there were some mergers that were unthinkable,” Copps, now with the DC-based watchdog group Common Cause, told the Guardian. “We’re in a period now when everything’s so wild that nothing is unthinkable.”
The figure that looms large behind Sinclair is David Smith, whose father founded the company in the Nixon era. Smith recently ended his 28-year reign as CEO, and along with his brothers maintains what an industry publication called “iron-clad control” of the billion-dollar media empire as well as the company’s majority financial interest.
The Smith family, based in and around Baltimore, likes to keep a low profile – they give few interviews and David Smith has no Wikipedia page. “We would tend to maintain as much anonymity as we can,” he told the Baltimore Sun in 1995, one of the rare times he’s spoken to the press.
Their political agenda is somewhat less mysterious. Campaign finance records show the Smith brothers have historically donated overwhelmingly to Republicans. And a Washington Post analysis of the company’s 2016 presidential election coverage found Sinclair stations were unusually favorable towards Trump and negative towards Hillary Clinton.
During last year’s presidential campaign, Sinclair conducted zero interviews with Clinton. But it touted 15 “exclusive” ones with Trump, which aired mostly in critical swing states in the final months of the election and without any commentary, despite the copious fact-checking Trump interviews tend to require. Sinclair has insisted it had no special arrangement with the Trump campaign and that Clinton simply did not make herself available to them. Clinton campaign officials say they spurned Sinclair for a reason, though her vice-presidential nominee, Tim Kaine, gave a handful interviews to Sinclair stations.
According to Politico, Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner told a room full of Manhattan business executives that the campaign had struck a deal with Sinclair to secure better coverage in the states where they needed spots most.
The manner in which Sinclair looks set to expand – specifically, with Trump paving the way – is causing widespread anxiety throughout media and political circles. The focus of the concern is Ajit Pai, the man Trump appointed as head of the country’s top broadcasting regulator, the FCC.
Since he began work in January, Pai has been busy relaxing the protections for local broadcasting that had previously limited Sinclair’s expansion.
Trump’s new-look FCC has moved swiftly to clear the hurdles for Sinclair’s proposed takeover of Tribune. A day before Trump was inaugurated, Smith invited Pai to a meeting at the Washington-area headquarters of the company’s ABC affiliate. Within 10 days of taking over the FCC, a New York Times investigation found, Pai had already relaxed a restriction on TV stations’ sharing of resources, including ad revenue – precisely the topic Smith had met with Pai about.
Since January, the Times report found, “Pai has undertaken a deregulatory blitz enacting or proposing a wishlist of fundamental policy changes advocated by Mr Smith and his company.”
Tom Wheeler, Pai’s predecessor at the FCC, who is now at the Brookings Institution, said: “What’s surprising is how fast the Trump FCC moved and how they moved without any real opportunity for public comment and without any following of procedural due process ... So you look at that kind of behavior and scratch your head.”
To better understand such behavior and where it’s leading, it helps to consider where Sinclair began.
David Smith’s father, Julian Sinclair Smith, described by the company’s official history as “patriarch to the Smith brothers”, founded the company in 1971, and kept a hand in the business until his death, following a battle with Parkinson’s, in 1993. But the company’s greatest evolutionary changes began around 1990, when the brothers bought up the remainder of their parents’ stock, kicking off an extended buying spree that would last decades.
As Sinclair grew, so did the scrutiny. And increasingly, the Smith brothers found themselves not just the broadcasters, but the subject of the news.
In 1996, David Smith was arrested on suspicion of soliciting a prostitute who performed what the police called “unnatural and perverted sex on him” in a Mercedes owned by Sinclair. More disturbing to critics than the misdemeanor sex offense, though, was the unusual way he got out of doing the court-ordered community service that resulted from his plea bargain in the case: by having his broadcasting company do what amounted to publicity hits for local drug counseling programs, packaged as news.
LuAnne Canipe, a former reporter for Sinclair, said the incident was also indicative of a broader culture of office sexism. “Let’s just say the arrest of the CEO was part of a sexual atmosphere that trickled down to different levels in the company,” said Canipe, who left Sinclair in 1998. “There was an improper work environment. I think that because of what he did, there was a feeling that everything was fair game.”
One person concerned by Sinclair’s growth: Rupert Murdoch
The growth of Sinclair may have passed below the radar, but not past another media mogul – Rupert Murdoch, chairman and acting CEO of Fox News.
Although Sinclair has insisted it has no interest in competing with national cable news platforms like Murdoch’s, industry observers say the mogul is already planning a strategy to combat the rise of a potential rival. After a failed attempt to outbid Sinclair for Tribune, Murdoch is threatening a switch of Fox’s broadcast affiliates from Sinclair-owned stations to those of a smaller independent broadcaster.
But it isn’t just Sinclair’s business interests that are a cause of creeping concern – its political affiliations could be, too.
Take the case the former congressman Bob Ehrlich, a Maryland Republican who later become governor. After pressing the FCC to fast-track Sinclair’s request to acquire more stations, Ehrlich enjoyed company perks like the frequent use of a Sinclair executive’s luxury helicopter, as the Baltimore Sun reported in 2002. By the time full details of the report emerged, Ehrlich had already won his gubernatorial election.
In 2004, Sinclair leadership reportedly ordered its local affiliate stations to air a documentary critical of the Democratic presidential nominee, John Kerry, based on allegations which later proved unfounded – that Kerry had exaggerated his record as a swift-boat officer in the Vietnam war.
A Washington DC bureau chief publicly resisted and was fired for the offense. The incident sent ripples through its stations, but Sinclair said media reports about the controversy exaggerated the issue.
Around the same time, as George W Bush faced criticism over the faltering war in Iraq, Sinclair ordered seven of its stations not to run an episode of Nightline in which host Ted Koppel read the names of every American soldier killed in the war, saying it “undermine[d] the efforts of the United States in Iraq”. The decision sparked a major backlash, including from the Republican senator John McCain, a Vietnam war veteran, who wrote a letter to David Smith calling the decision “unpatriotic” and “a gross disservice to the public, and to the men and women of the United States Armed Forces”.
Other times, Sinclair’s influence has been more ambiguous. When the Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs was assaulted by the then US congressional candidate Greg Gianforte on the eve of his election in Montana, the local NBC affiliate, recently purchased by Sinclair, refused to air Jacobs’s audio recording of the incident, despite entreaties from NBC executives in New York. The local news director said she was not influenced by Sinclair, noting the purchase was not yet complete. Gianforte won the election, and, the day after the Montana Republican was charged with assault, Sinclair’s vice-president and director Fred Smith donated $1,000 to him.
Meanwhile, with its 2015 purchase of Circa, a mobile aggregated news app, Sinclair has control for the first time of a national text-based news outlet. Backed by a staff of 70, Sinclair transformed the app into conservative-leaning platform offering thinly sourced scoops – often written without any author byline other than “Circa staff” – that frequently seem to advance the Trump administration’s agenda du jour. Trump and his aides have returned the favor by linking to Circa’s content, and it’s become a favorite source of Sean Hannity, Fox News’s most obsequious Trump booster. (Sinclair denies Circa has any political orientation, noting that it does not carry op-eds.)
The rise of Sinclair has also recently stirred the Democrats in Washington, who have become increasingly vocal on the issue.
This summer, Senator Maria Cantwell led a group of colleagues in urging commerce and judiciary leaders to carefully examine the pending deal with Tribune, citing concern “about the level of media concentration this merger creates, and its impact on the public interest”, according to the lawmakers’ June letter.
And this week, House Democrats in top FCC oversight positions wrote directly to the FCC’s Pai expressing their dismay at what they perceive to be a “pattern” of preferential treatment toward Sinclair.
In addition to changes paving the way for Sinclair’s merger, Pai’s FCC has proposed eliminating one of its most fundamental rules, which requires local news stations to actually have a local studio where they broadcast the news.
Now, the agency seems poised to do away with local broadcast protections, which would allow Sinclair and other broadcasters to save money by cutting local staff and to impose more editorial input from corporate headquarters.
And that means many more Americans will be hearing from the most dangerous company most people have never heard of – whether they know it or not.
MOVING FORWARD far-right wing authoritarian dictatorship Chinese model of MAOIST LIBERTARIAN MARXISM------needs lots and lots of censorship------and reasons to censor. We hear from global 99% of citizens from most nations in our public policy discussions---almost no voices from our 99% of Chinese citizens. This is what creating a CLOSED SOCIETY looks like and US MOVING FORWARD has that as a goal.
Most US citizens understand that FACEBOOK was always a NSA/CIA surveillance tool marketed as mainstream social media. It has been used to spy----it has been used as a source of mega data in creating artificial intelligence computers and robotics-----and of course it is a super-duper tool for massive propaganda. Zuckerberg/Facebook being that global banking 5% player having his billions could care less if FACEBOOK is pushed to bankruptcy and disappears into GLOBAL GOOGLE.
'Facebook, along with Twitter (TWTR) and Google (GOOGL), has come under fire since the 2016 presidential election for its role in spreading fake news, enabling polarizing filter bubbles, and not catching Russian propaganda campaigns'.
The main source of 2016 Presidential primary and general election campaign fake news was coming from the CLINTON/BUSH/OBAMA political machines----
National news is telling us FACEBOOK is losing much capital------fixing FACEBOOK would ruin its business model-----so we see all these news reports as MOVING FORWARD ENDING SOCIAL MEDIA outlets like FACEBOOK/TWITTER
Here we have the pinnacle of Alice Through the Mirror in US media----CNN is calling FACEBOOK fake news.
Of course both FB and Twitter are creating FAKE DATA in streaming video and Twitter followers making global banking 5% players look as though they have tens of thousands or millions of followers ---when it is all FAKE.
Mark Zuckerberg's goal for 2018: 'Fixing' Facebook
by Seth Fiegerman @sfiegerman January 4, 2018: 1:00 PM ET
For 2018, however, Zuckerberg is essentially challenging himself to do better at his day job.
Zuckerberg said Thursday his personal challenge for 2018 is working to prevent Facebook from being misused in ways that potentially do harm to its billions of users and to society at large.
"The world feels anxious and divided, and Facebook has a lot of work to do -- whether it's protecting our community from abuse and hate, defending against interference by nation states, or making sure that time spent on Facebook is time well spent," Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post Thursday. "My personal challenge for 2018 is to focus on fixing these important issues."
Zuckerberg continued: "We won't prevent all mistakes or abuse, but we currently make too many errors enforcing our policies and preventing misuse of our tools. If we're successful this year then we'll end 2018 on a much better trajectory."
The admission of Facebook's shortcomings in protecting its platform, and Zuckerberg's goal to double down on addressing them, comes after a bruising year for the company.
Related: Silicon Valley's 'gut-wrenching' year confronting its dark side
Facebook, along with Twitter (TWTR) and Google (GOOGL), has come under fire since the 2016 presidential election for its role in spreading fake news, enabling polarizing filter bubbles, and not catching Russian propaganda campaigns.
Late last year, executives from Facebook (FB), Twitter (TWTR) and Google (GOOG) were grilled by Congress over their role in the 2016 election. Some in Congress raised alarms about the immense power of these platforms and their seeming inability to police themselves.
There have also been troubling headlines for Facebook from abroad. Facebook has been described as enabling ethnic cleansing in Myanmar. And Facebook's WhatsApp was cited as a cause of beatings in India after a fake news story went viral on the messaging service.
After years of maintaining an unwavering optimism about the social network, Zuckerberg and other Facebook insiders have been forced to confront the dark side of what they built.
In one remarkably candid post for Yom Kippur last year, Zuckerberg apologized for "the ways my work was used to divide people rather than bring us together."
Acknowledging a problem is one thing, finding a solution is another.
In the post Thursday, Zuckerberg admitted Facebook's problems touch on "questions of history, civics, political philosophy, media, government, and of course technology."
"I'm looking forward to bringing groups of experts together to discuss and help work through these topics," he said.
The New Year's challenge is just the latest example of a shift in Zuckerberg's public posture about Facebook. In the first days after the 2016 election, Zuckerberg dismissed as "crazy" the idea that fake news on the social network influenced the outcome.
Yet, Facebook spent much of 2017 trying to address exactly that concern. The company waged a global fight against fake news by cracking down on tens of thousands of fraudulent accounts, partnering with fact checkers and running full-page ads in newspapers with tips to spot fabricated stories.
Zuckerberg also made it his personal challenge for 2017 to break out of the Silicon Valley bubble and meet with people in every state. The move fueled speculation Zuckerberg wanted to run for president, but some in the tech industry instead saw it as an attempt to assess the unintended consequences of his company.
"Zuck isn't running for President," Nathan Hubbard, a former Twitter executive, tweeted last June. "He's trying to understand the role the product he created played in getting this one elected.
PBS is national public TV---NPR/APR are national public radio. Our national public stations used to be REAL LEFT SOCIAL PROGRESSIVE until CLINTON 1990s----when Clinton/Bush filled these national SOCIALLY PROGRESSIVE media outlets with FAR-RIGHT WING GLOBAL BANKING CORPORATE journalism.
So, these few decades PBS----NPR have always been RIGHT WING. RIGHT WING EXTREME WEALTH NEO-LIBERALISM was worse than our US right wing conservatives.
All these media articles pretending our national media is JUST NOW turning RIGHT WING-----MOOSE and SQUIRREL.
NPR after 2008 economic crash through POSING aside and openly became global Chamber of Commerce with MARKETPLACE MONEY creating all journalism.
NPR is disappearing as GLOBAL TED-X ---internet media replaces our TV and RADIO stations. Far right wing global hedge fund IVY LEAGUE Johns Hopkins controls all of Maryland public radio while Maryland PBS TV is controlled by far-right wing global banking 1% Clinton neo-liberals.
How Sinclair Broadcasting puts a partisan tilt on trusted local news
Oct 10, 2017 7:33 pm EDT
The country’s largest owner of local TV stations, the Sinclair Broadcast Group, which reaches over a third of homes across the nation, wants to get even bigger by merging with the Tribune Media Company. But Sinclair is raising concerns among media watchers because of its practice of combining news with partisan political opinion. William Brangham reports.
Read the Full Transcript
- JUDY WOODRUFF:
And now for a different kind of media story, and a question: Does it matter who owns the TV station that delivers your local news?
Polls show that many Americans trust local news more than other sources. The largest owner of local stations in the country, Sinclair Broadcasting, planning a merger that would make them even bigger.
It is a move that is raising concerns because of Sinclair’s policy of combining news with partisan political opinion.
William Brangham has that story.
A train derailment in Tennessee.
Some routine road maintenance has led to a squabble.
We have some breaking news to tell you about. This is out of Bethesda tonight.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
Night after night, the country’s largest owner of local TV stations, the Sinclair Broadcast Group, reaches over a third of homes across the nation.
A compromise plan for the controversial Conesus Inn.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
Most of us think of local news as just that, local. Stations run local stories, produced and reported by local people.
- But if, recently, you tuned in to, say, WVTV, which is Sinclair’s station in Milwaukee, you saw this:
- BORIS EPSHTEYN, Former Senior Adviser, Trump Campaign:
Does the president have to repeat that fact day in and out for us to believe it?
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
That’s Boris Epshteyn, former member of the Trump administration, and now chief political analyst for Sinclair.
- And here he was again on WEAR in Pensacola:
- BORIS EPSHTEYN:
The president is stating the fact that the fringes of the left and the right…
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
And on KSAS in Wichita:
- BORIS EPSHTEYN:
Are both capable of hate and violence doesn’t mean he is condoning any of it.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
And, again and again on every single one of the 173 Sinclair stations across the country. On those stations, you might also see these:
- MARK HYMAN:
We should only tear down the bad statues, one viewer told me. But who decides what is bad?
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
That’s Sinclair executive Mark Hyman.
- MARK HYMAN:
What responsible adult hasn’t pointed to a scar as a reminder to not repeat a foolish act from their youth?
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
Or these, the weekly so-called Terrorism Alert Desk.
- ALISON STARLING:
From the terrorism alert desk in Washington, I’m Alison Starling.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
Sinclair mandates that these clearly conservative editorials and features get broadcast on every one of their local stations. In some cases, stations have to run them as often as nine times a week.
Eric Lipton is a reporter for The New York Times who’s been covering Sinclair.
- ERIC LIPTON, The New York Times:
They have what they call must-runs, which include Boris Epshteyn, who is a surrogate for Trump, who is on the air, talking about conservative issues.
While the local news stations largely decide what their local news is going to be, you know, covering local government, crime and local issues, there are these must-runs that go on their networks across the United States, which have a decidedly conservative flavor.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
This partisan tilt has many free speech advocates alarmed, because not only does Sinclair own such a large chunk of the marketplace already, but it’s hoping to get bigger still.
If a proposed $4 billion merger with Tribune Media goes forward, Sinclair would now reach three out of four American households.
- Journalism professor and former Milwaukee station manager Lewis Friedland:
- LEWIS FRIEDLAND, University of Milwaukee-Madison:
It is a real step in a very different direction to begin to say the most trusted news source of most Americans is going to be allowed to be turned into an opinion organization, an opinion machine for a very narrow, narrowly conservative point of view night after night in local communities.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
Television remains the main source of news for many Americans. In 2016, 46 percent of adults said they got their news from local TV stations.
And it’s information they trust; 41 percent of registered voters said they trust local news to tell the truth, while just 27 percent trust national news.
Sinclair disputes having any kind of political bent. Its executives declined to talk with us on camera for this report. But the record shows that the Maryland-based company has used its ownership of stations to push partisan conservative viewpoints for years.
For example, after the 9/11 attacks, Sinclair required anchors and reporters to read messages supporting President George Bush’s efforts against terrorism.
- TED KOPPEL:
The names and the faces of the fallen tell their own story.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
In 2004, when ABC News’ “Nightline” devoted an entire show to reading the names of U.S. service members who’d died in Iraq, Sinclair, which owned seven ABC affiliates at the time, barred those stations from showing the broadcast.
Later that year, in the midst of the presidential campaign between John Kerry and President George Bush, Sinclair mandated all its stations run a special that included clips from a distinctly one-sided documentary that questioned John Kerry’s Vietnam War service.
I was outraged, and still am, that he willingly said things which were untrue.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
And, more recently, Sinclair had its stations run this segment, which called the national media purveyors of fake news.
- SCOTT LIVINGSTON, Vice President of News, Sinclair:
Unfortunately, some members of the national media are using their platforms to push their own personal bias and agenda to control exactly what people think.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
Sinclair even caught the eye of HBO’s John Oliver, who poked fun at how Sinclair sometimes forces conservative talking points into the scripts that their local news anchors read.
Did the FBI have a personal vendetta in pursuing the Russia investigation of President Trump’s former national security adviser, Michael Flynn?
Did the FBI have a personal vendetta?
… in pursuing the Russia investigation of…
… President Trump’s former national security adviser, Michael Flynn?
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
This blurring of news and opinion is one criticism of the company. The blurring of news and advertising is another.
Hey, is it too early to get a fish sandwich?
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
There are numerous examples of Sinclair stations running what are largely paid promotions masquerading as news pieces.
More and more patients at Huntsman Cancer Institute are recording their life stories.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
Like in this case, where Sinclair stations across the country ran these segments about the Huntsman Cancer Institute. They looked like news spots, but were in fact funded by the cancer center, something viewers weren’t told.
The FCC is still investigating that case.
Sinclair’s bid to buy Tribune Media, and thus expand its reach dramatically in the local news market, has drawn plenty of criticism. Sinclair says critics have it wrong.
They say it’s about economics — quote — “The proposed merger will advance the public interest by helping to shore up an industry buffeted by well-known economic challenges.”
Traditionally, to protect against any one company becoming too dominant, Congress has set certain caps on how many media outlets any one corporation can own in a given market, but the FCC recently changed those rules.
Under the new leadership of Trump appointee Ajit Pai, the FCC has now made it easier to approve Sinclair’s expansion.
Tom Wheeler is the former chair of the FCC. He thinks these new changes are a blow to a free and vibrant press.
- TOM WHEELER, Former Chair, Federal Communications Commission:
The Trump FCC has, in one very short period, moved to change three basic rules that have been in place to protect the diversity of voices and avoid monopolization of broadcast television market.
We have a society in which the flow of information is crucial to a democracy. And when that free flow of information gets choked off by corporate consolidation, we ought to all worry.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
Eric Lipton of The New York Times discovered meetings and correspondence between Ajit Pai and Sinclair executives that he says raise questions about the company’s influence with the Trump administration.
- ERIC LIPTON:
He met with the executive officers of Sinclair just a few days before Trump was inaugurated, where they made clear to him that they were looking for the Trump administration to roll back some of these restrictions that were essentially limiting their ability to get bigger.
And it was just a matter of a couple of weeks when, all of a sudden, Pai was named chairman and he was actually rolling back the same rules that they had approached him on. And only as a result of rolling back these rules is Sinclair merger was going to be able to go through.
- LEWIS FRIEDLAND:
It’s not just, as Chairman Pai is suggesting, a simple shift in ownership regulations. It’s actually a shift in our entire broadcast ecosystem.
- WILLIAM BRANGHAM:
A final FCC decision on the Sinclair-Tribune deal is expected later this year.
In Washington, D.C., I’m William Brangham for the PBS NewsHour.