Sunday, August 28, 2016

Yes Donald Trump Receives More Favorable National Media Coverage Than Hillary Clinton

For Clinton supporters like me this has been obvious for the entire 2016 campaign.

"Several independent studies have confirmed what is intuitively obvious, and frankly, staggering: Donald Trump receives more favorable national media coverage than Hillary Clinton. Just ask Mark Halperin, the quintessential media insider, who recently conceded: “There’s a deep well of anti-Clinton sentiment in the press.” The national media are stumped by Trump, seeking false “balance” (and clicks) out of deference to his voters. Yet somehow, that deference is absent in Hillary’s case; she and her voters are maligned and marginalized at every turn."

It's true, and every independent study has shown it. What is shocking is that the media gives Trump the benefit of the doubt at every turn an benefit which is never extended to Hillary. So after 14 months of vowing to deport 12 million people, Trump made a few allusions to a 'softer' approach and the media declared, 'He's a changed man. Don't worry about what he's said for 14 months. What matters is that today he's said he has regrets and is softening.'

Incidentally, it turns out his 'regret' speech was the suggestion of Shelly Adelson. Yet he claims that Hillary is totally beholden to her donors.

Peter Daou provides some headlines that compare treatment of Hillary vs. Trump. Here is a perfect example of the way with the national media, Hillary can't win. 

"Hillary Clinton Has a Very Detailed Plan for the Economy. That May be a Problem."

See, having a detailed plan for the economy is a problem. Imagine the way she'd be attacked if she didn't have a detailed plan? But this shows why I really don't care if she ever does a presser again: the national media doesn't care diddly about policy. 

Daou on the Hillary Rules.

"See, it shouldn’t be that hard to cover Donald in a way that feels fair. Simply apply the three immutable tenets of Hillary reporting:

1. Always assume bad character and attribute malicious motives.

Completely the opposite of how the media covers Trump. Despite the fact that he lies egregiously 71% of the time they still give him the benefit of the doubt.

Like if after 14 months of saying crazy things, he says 'I'm regretful' but won't say about what and and that he might 'soften' on immigration that's good enough for the media. They don't see why they should have to push back on that or be at all skeptical.

2. Completely overlook and invisibilize supporters.

Yes! I've noticed how the media routinely opines 'No one likes her', 'She is unlikable' as if it's a fact. No, plenty of us like her. I guess we don't count as we're 'biased!' Only the 'unbiased' get to decide if they like Hillary Clinton. 

3. Focus relentlessly on negatives — and portray positives as negatives.

Yes. I saw Sahil Kapur argue that if Hillary wins she'll be in trouble as millennials don't trust her and the GOP will be able to come back right away. 

Everything with Hillary is to focus on the negative no matter how much of a reach. Trump is 'regretful' but doesn't really apologize and offers not one specific thing he regrets and the media oohs and aahs. 

The Clintons say they won't accept foreign donors to the Clinton Foundation if she's elected and that doesn't please the media at all. Instead they 

1. Demand why it wasn't done sooner

2. Declare 'So you admit now that it was wrong.'

3. Demand that they take these measures now before she has even won. 

4. Demand that the CF simply be shutdown, ASAP.

Yes. Who cares about the 11.5 million AIDS victims that depend on the Foundation? Bad optics are more important than helping these folks. 

For the record, there are polls that show that most Americans actually believed that Bill Clinton could run the CF while Hillary was President-as for instance Bush Sr did while Bush Jr was President for eight years. What's the difference? Yup. The Clinton Rules. 

Daou wonders what would happen if the Clinton Rules were applied to Donald Trump.

"Now apply that same standard to Donald:

"Always assume anything he says or does is corrupt. Start from the position that he’s malicious and manipulative, as you do with Hillary. Presume everything he does is part of a duplicitous scheme. Treat him like a grotesque caricature of a human being, an ambitious automaton, a power-hungry monster devoid of the most basic humanity. Attribute nefarious motives to anything he says, even the way he laughs or smiles."

"Pay no mind to his supporters. None whatsoever. Don’t worry about offending them. If you have the slightest pang of guilt, just keep in mind how you’ve continually dismissed Hillary’s 15.8 million voters with your demeaning “enthusiasm gap” narrative. Tell your audience only about the people who don’t like him, never those who do. In every interview, ask him why he’s so despised. Focus relentlessly on every negative data point to portray him as an isolated outcast, just as you do with Hillary."

"Roadblock every negative story, just like you’ve done with Hillary’s emails, which our research shows you’ve covered every single day for an entire year. Obsess, obsess, obsess. Endlessly obsess until your audience goes numb from the repetition, until a single word like “transcripts” or “emails” or “foundation” conjures oceans of opprobrium. Probe every permutation of his words and actions and fit them into damaging frames concocted by rival opposition researchers. Examine every nook and cranny of what you consider to be his rank awfulness, just as you do with Hillary."

"I could go on, but you get the point."

Truth is that 1 might be in order for Trump. I would absolutely agree with not believing anything he says without a second opinion. If he says it's Friday I want a second opinion. His word is not worth anything if it comes notarized. After all, would you trust a notary paid by Donald Trump? We saw his doctor's 5 minute note.

"Here’s the bottom line: With Donald inviting the assassination of his opponent, calling President Obama the “founder of ISIS,” attacking a Gold Star family, calling on Russia to hack us,openly courting white nationalists, and displaying a total lack of preparedness for the office he seeks, you are facing an ethical dilemma. Do you continue treating Hillary with contempt or do you tell the truth about Trump?"

"You can’t just keep pretending that Donald and Hillary are equivalent. They’re not. Nor can you insist that their unfavorable ratings are remotely comparable. One candidate is a dedicated and admired public servant who is smeared and lied about simply for existing. The other is a bloviating bigot who lacks the most basic common decency. One candidate is trusted and respected by the most accomplished people in the world. The other is an intolerant and dangerous bully who is toxic to his own party and mocked across the globe."

"Now here’s the staggering reality: You give Donald better coverage. Yes, you do. Look at this recent chart from Harvard’s Shorenstein Center."

It shows that 47% of her coverage is positive, 53% negative. Bernie got 54% positive. Ted Cruz got 49 positive-51 negative. Trump is also 49-51. Other studies have shown the same.

Daou then says something I can attest to:

"It’s a toxic dynamic that only you have the power to change. He never will. Why would he?"

"If you’re worried that you’ll alienate your Republican audience by telling the truth about how ill-prepared Donald is for the presidency, my advice is simple: Be fair to him in the same way you’re “fair” to Hillary — namely, by doing your best to undermine his candidacy and damage his public image."

"And if you think your ratings will suffer by covering both candidates equally, consider the fact that her millions of supporters will flock to anyone who has the guts to report on her without the usual cynicism. That’s not conjecture. As the author of the most shared article about Hillary of 2016 (half a million shares and counting), I know for a fact that unfiltered reporting on Hillary and her enthusiastic supporters is a path to success. There’s a hunger for fair coverage of Hillary."

Yes. I've seen this on Twitter myself. It's amazing, In the 1990s I felt isolated. I hated the way the media provided an echo chamber for Rush and Matt Drudge and friends. But that was before there was a blogosphere. Media was Right wing dominated. The national media was 'both sides do it.'

But this election I was cheered to discover so many fellow Hillary supporters on Twitter. 

Brian Stelter on CNN has tried to do some fair coverage and has gotten a lot of Hillary supporters to watch. 

But the best show out there is becoming Joy Reid. It was staggering yesterday to see her actually hold the press accountable for its coverage of the Clinton Foundation.

If the media is worried about eyeballs, there really are a lot of us. Unlike Trump supporters or even some Bernie or Busters we don't shout things like 'Lock her up' or declare that 'Everything is rigged, rigged I tell you.'

But we pay attention and we vote. LOL. I'm again thinking of Nixon's 1968 campaign. 'The non protesters, the non shouters, the people that make America work.'

In some ways that's Hillary supporters circa 2016. In some ways, not all ways. 

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