The Disinformation Dynasty: The Elephant in the Newsroom
The market for disinformation is growing big time, threatening the democratic process. Right-wing news media and its backers are building the infrastructure to crank it out on an industrial scale.
No News Isn't Good News: Biden's Foreign Policy Challenges Begin at Home
President Biden wants to re-establish U.S. leadership abroad. While opinion polls show people have confidence in his ability to handle international affairs, his biggest challenge nonetheless remains bringing Americans along. Growing civic illiteracy plays a role, but the news media's fixation on political controversy and redundant commentary is a big part of Biden's problem. The international news desert on broadcast and cable is the reason why.
Reflections on Trump in Retreat: Remission Doesn't Mean Cure
Novelists who write political fiction will forever bemoan Donald Trump. Whether their oeuvre is thrillers or serious stories, Trump's exit from the White House after his failed coup d'état is a testament to the old saw: you just can't make this stuff up.
News, Propaganda and Profits: A Warning to Americans From Down Under
As the finale of an annus horribilis, New Year's Eve 2020 is likely to find pandemic isolated Americans at home, couch-bound, and channel surfing through the celebrations around the world. Time zones and international datelines will sequence their shows, teeing up festivities in Australia as an early morning first. People would be wise to keep the Aussies tuned in. The sounds and lights over Sydney harbor aren't the only fireworks that will be worth watching down under in 2021.
Trump TV 2.0: The News Media Can't Ignore the Debut
Donald Trump’s Act Two debuts in January. The country will pay the price if the news media gets hooked on the show.
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China's Kowtowing Capitalists: Elon Musk Praises China While Thumbing Nose at U.S.
As CEOs hustle to make amends whenever Beijing accuses their companies of stepping on its political toes, commentators unfailingly point to their stake in China’s enormous market to explain the bowing and scraping. The analysis misses the point. There’s no question the boardroom big shots want to protect their investments, but China’s leaders also are orchestrating the C-suite chorus as a part of their increasingly aggressive media game.
The Banana Republicans and Their Media Enablers: Have They No Shame?
Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart found just the right words in 1964 when he concurred in a First Amendment case. The Constitution, he asserted, protected obscene speech except for hard core pornography. I won't try to describe it, Stewart wrote, but I'll know it when I see it.
Lady Long Rider: The Trail from Montana to Walden Pond
Lady Long Rider by Bernice Ende who rode horseback 30,000 miles solo around the United States and Canada is a fascinating memoir, meditation, and memorial to the women who liberated her and her courage to embark on a decade of journeys across the continent. It deserves to be read.
Disinformation Deconstructs Democracy: Is the News Up to Covering the Story?
Republicans were witnesses on January 6th when the mob stormed the Capitol in order to overturn an election at Trump's behest. So were the journalists who courageously reported the first attempted coup d'état incited by, of all people, a President of the United States. The question is: Will the media cover the growing threat to democracy that Trump's big lie and its enablers' support represent after his impeachment trial is no longer news?
Delegitimizing Democracy in 2021: Will Disinformation and Trump Views Be News?
The spectacle of hundreds of Republicans on Capitol Hill pandering to a defeated president’s baseless election claims on January 6th when Congress certifies the Electoral College results looks like the last scene in Trump’s 2020 political charade. The news media needs to call out the disinformation for what it is -- the opening act in their 2021 attack on the democratic process.
Kent Michael Harrington
Analyst, Journalist, Author and National Security Affairs Expert