Wanna bet 2018 won’t be better?
The Media Research Center (MRC) analyzed the media’s coverage of President Donald Trump in 2017 and found, unsurprisingly, that their reports were mostly negative.
■ The Trump presidency was the biggest story of the year, accounting for one out of every three minutes of evening news airtime — nearly 100 hours in total.
■ The tone of coverage has been incessantly hostile, especially for a new President in his honeymoon year: 90% negative, vs. just 10% positive (These percentages do not include neutral statements).
■ More than two-fifths of evening news coverage of the President (43%) focused on controversies, not policies, with the Russia investigation alone accounting for one-fifth of all Trump coverage (1,234 minutes).
■ Despite their massive coverage of Russia, the networks had almost no airtime for questions about how the investigation began, or whether special counsel Robert Mueller’s current investigation is biased.
Look, I’m no fan of Trump. I’m a libertarian and voted for Gary Johnson. However, I find the media coverage of Trump disgusting. I cannot remember how many times this year I said, “Out of all the things they can report on Trump, THIS is what they choose?!” Like controversies instead of actual policy. MRC noted:
■ A Huge Percentage of Network News Coverage Focused on Controversies, Not Policy: More than two-fifths of evening news coverage of the Trump administration (43%, or 42 hours, 37 minutes) centered on various controversies associated with the President and his top aides. The Russia investigation was the networks’ favorite topic, with an astonishing 20 hours, 34 minutes of coverage, or more than one-fifth of all Trump coverage last year.
Discussion of all public policy issues combined amounted to 46 hours, 58 minutes of coverage, or roughly 47 percent of all Trump coverage. The five most-frequently covered policy issues: the effort to repeal and replace ObamaCare (475 minutes); the nuclear showdown with North Korea (364 minutes); immigration policy, including ramped-up deportations and a potential border wall (258 minutes); the temporary travel ban and the ensuing court fight (251 minutes); and the ultimately successful push for comprehensive tax reform (222 minutes).
TAX REFORM received such little coverage and it makes me ill. Even when they did cover the tax reform, I personally found the news would either stretch the truth or flat out lie. I found many long run problems within tax reform (you know, like not cutting spending with the tax cuts, which will lead to major problems when the tax cuts expire) that I couldn’t believe the media chose not to cover it.
MRC also found that the media had a lot of coverage on possible Russian-Trump election coverage, but hardly any scrutiny of Special Counsel Robert Mueller:
Yet very little of the airtime devoted to the Russia investigation was spent looking into how the inquiry into Team Trump first began, or whether Mueller’s current investigation is biased. Suggestions that Obama administration officials had improperly “unmasked” Trump officials caught up in foreign surveillance garnered just 20 minutes of evening news coverage, or less than two percent of the Russia total. Evening news coverage of the uncorroborated anti-Trump dossier, which we eventually learned was financed by the Clinton campaign’s lawyer, amounted to a mere 15 minutes of airtime.
While the media subjected Clinton-era independent counsel Ken Starr to harsh scrutiny, any doubts raised about Mueller and his team have been given little airtime. The three evening newscasts spent a combined 11 minutes (less than 1% of their Russia coverage) on the biased anti-Trump text messages exchanged between an FBI agent and an FBI lawyer, both of whom had worked on the investigation. Criticism that the Mueller team had improperly obtained e-mails written by Trump officials during the transition period was given barely five minutes of airtime, (or less than 0.5% of the total Russia coverage).
From what I have seen so far, 2018 will not be any better. In fact, I complained to Professor Jacobson yesterday about how the media was still obsessed over the shithole comment instead of concentrating on the shutdown that may occur on Friday.DONATE
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