Electing a Fake President, Undoing a Real One: The Power of the Media
Early last year, I interviewed for a senior editor's position with the Federal Aviation Administration. The supervisor of the group had done some research on my writings and asked if I would be able to maintain the government's narrative. The office did press releases for government officials and the public on the next-generation air traffic control system, as the FAA transitioned from a radar-based ATC to a global positioning system-based program. As senior editor, I would ensure our office's prime directive that the new GPS-based ATC program was vitally necessary to combat global warming. I write conservative novels and I wasn't a good fit.
The latest official narrative trajectory is that Russia interfered with our presidential election and that President-Elect Donald Trump is an illegitimate president. Americans are to ignore several facts – Hillary didn't campaign in Wisconsin or Michigan, the Russians couldn't have changed any vote tallies, Julian Assange said he didn't get John Podesta's emails from the Russians, etc. – and the list of excuses why Secretary Clinton lost grows every day. National newspapers and networks have picked up the newest and obviously false narrative that "Trump is an illegitimate president" and have run with it.
When the media desire, they can function like a swarm of bees or a pack of jackals to bring down their prey. Conservative radio stations and TV shows often create a compendium of sound bites from liberal sources to demonstrate to their audiences just how the media function like a swarm of drone bees and attack with "the word or phrase of the day." The goal of the demonstration is to convey that the media somehow receive some "approved" narrative or talking point, for it is widely and immediately dispatched and regurgitated on air, where it becomes de facto news. In the last few weeks, "Russian hacking"; "influenced the election"; and, most recently, "illegitimate president" have been the narrative or buzz words that dominate the news cycle across our fruited plains. This is media prestidigitation.
Apparently, a large number of news sources breathlessly reporting on a single subject somehow magically, by legerdemain, legitimizes "the news." Republicans are painfully aware that they must not cross the media lest they be subject to this type of manufactured "news."
Democrats and their media friends always use fake news against Republicans; their favorite method of control is ridicule, the media's equivalent of "death by a thousand cuts." Republicans who say something inappropriate or stupid rarely survive their political careers. Republicans have learned to keep their mouths shut when Democrats and the media vigorously team to pursue an agenda or a narrative, and these Republicans give weak, mealy responses.
Where Republicans can be controlled, Democrats are immune to media ridicule. During a House committee meeting, Rep. Hank Johnson said he feared that stationing 8,000 Marines on Guam would cause the island to "become so overly populated that it will tip over and capsize." Also, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee confused the planet Mars with Earth's own moon, asking whether the Pathfinder satellite had succeeded in taking a picture of the flag planted on Mars by Neil Armstrong in 1969. Rep. Nancy Pelosi famously said, "We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what's in it." And the latest, Rep. John Lewis, a Democratic congressman from Georgia, now believes that Russia's alleged hacking helped candidate Trump in the 2016 race and that this makes Trump an illegitimate president. There is always some Republican to ridicule.
Today's fourth estate is a joint venture of Democrats and the media; they have teamed up to manage and control whatever is their narrative for the day. The Podesta emails exposed the Clinton's and the media's playbook for rigging polls through "oversamples." Days before the election, an ABC/Washington Post poll showed a 12-point national advantage for Hillary. "By generating a small 'oversample' of black voters of 5% it could swing the overall poll by 3 full points."
These guys are a fifth column of liars and cheaters. While they are in power, they have been successful – very successful. And it is because of their nearly unfettered success in controlling a bogus narrative that "Putin and his merry band of Russians hacked the presidential election" that they think they can paint President-Elect Donald Trump as an illegitimate president. After all, when Democrats and the media were able to get an illegitimate presidential candidate elected, who's to say they couldn't succeed in getting a legitimate president-elect unelected?
With President Donald Trump and his Twitter machine, the Democrats and the media have lost their ability to fully control the narrative and wreak havoc on the American people. They are losing their ability to control the power of fake news.
Mark spent several years with the U.S. Border Patrol when it was with the Immigration & Naturalization Service. He is the author of several espionage thrillers.