A Washington Post writer is shocked that fraudulent reporting continues

When I read this article by Washington Post writer Charles Lane, acting as though he is surprised that fraudulent reporting continues with all the fact-checking,  I thought it was a joke. He seems astonished that a German reporter would get away with writing negative things about Americans based on stereotypes.

Below are some excerpts from Lane’s piece. Everything he complains about in the fraudulent German pieces could be said about the U.S media. My guess is that the Der Spiegel writer knew he could get awards by repeating what is written and said in the U.S media, with few ever questioning what he wrote. He knew they would go along.

Obama said Republicans cling to their religion and guns. Hillary said Trump supporters were deplorable and irredeemable. Obama compared tea party members to domestic terrorists. Almost all U.S. journalists supported Obama and Hillary no matter what they said or did, so why wouldn’t journalists from other countries gladly climb aboard with the stereotypes? 

...the gun-toting, death-penalty-seeking, racist American nonetheless remains a stock character of much superficial coverage,

The despicable Dick Durbin went on the Senate floor and compared the military activity at GITMO to Nazis, Pol Pot and Soviet Gulag and the media frequently uses Durbin to target Trump. Is it any surprise that a prize winning journalist would write a fictional story about Gitmo?

He made up a story about an oft-tortured Yemeni released from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, and another about a Joplin, Missouri, woman who travels the country just to witness executions.

We hear frequently how Trump supports the Nazis. Trump and other Republicans are frequently referred to as racists, sexists, homophobes and xenophobes.   

Similarly, while many German journalists report honestly from this country, going to great lengths to travel and meet ordinary people, the gun-toting, death-penalty-seeking, racist American nonetheless remains a stock character of much superficial coverage, particularly in left-leaning outlets such as Hamburg-based Der Spiegel. 

Ugly Americans, and American ugliness, crop up repeatedly in Relotius's articles. He made up a story about an oft-tortured Yemeni released from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, and another about a Joplin, Missouri, woman who travels the country just to witness executions. 

And on the outskirts of rural Fergus Falls, Minnesota, a majority of whose voters backed President Trump in 2016, Relotius purportedly found a large sign - "almost impossible to overlook," he wrote - reading "Mexicans Keep Out." 

The fact that no one in the U.S. press or social media had previously spotted the sign apparently did not prompt so much as a follow-up call to Fergus Falls by Der Spiegel's editors. 

They believed what they found believable. Their credulousness was rooted partly in truth - xenophobia, gun violence and the rest are real problems in the United States, just as anti-foreigner violence was, and is, in Germany. 

But it also reflected bias: Contempt for American culture has a long history among the continental European cognoscenti, the sort of people who read Der Spiegel and write for it. 

Negative caricatures of the United States have taken hold in broader German public opinion, too, especially since a stereotypical Ugly American, Donald Trump, reached the White House - but well before that, too. 

The sub-headline on the piece:

I was naive; thought fraud in reporting was done for

The Kelley scandal, like the 2003 revelation of Jayson Blair's frauds at the New York Times, disproved my belief that Stephen Glass's fakes at the New Republic (in the 1990s, when I was the magazine's editor) might be the last. Surely computer-aided fact-checking would deter fraud, I thought.

However, the unmasking of Der Spiegel's erstwhile ace, Claas Relotius, as a phony on Dec. 20, mere days after he collected his fourth German Reporter Prize, shows yet again that my hope was naive. Reporters keep inventing stories and getting prizes for them. 

What's going on? Fact-checking and other procedural matters are relevant but not fundamental. A great German philosopher got closer to the point when he wrote: "Out of the crooked timber of humanity, no straight thing was ever made." 

Germany today finds itself in a galling situation: It depends, for both military protection and export markets, on a country - the United States - that many Germans, including influential figures in academia, the media, business and politics, regard with ambivalence bordering on disdain. 

Lane’s home paper, the Washington Post, has participated widely in the fraudulent reporting on Russian collusion with Trump and yet Lane acts like he’s shocked about fraudulent reporting.

Almost all of the media intentionally and fraudulently reports that the Obama Justice Department operated independently and no one was above the law. Journalists frequently even use known perjurers Comey, Clapper, Brennan and Holder to bolster their attacks on Trump/

The Washington Post was the main source of hit pieces on booth Roy Moore and Brett Kavanaugh, seeking to destroy them with no actual evidence that the actual accusations were true.

When a police officer in Ferguson, MO shot a black thief trying to grab his gun, a fraudulent narrative of “hands up, Don’t Shoot” roared through the media, destroying the police officer and ginning up racial hate and violence. It intentionally ginned up hate of cops.

White kids from Duke were accused of rape throughout the media without actual evidence. These kids were targeted to help gin up racial hate. It is truly appalling how many people journalists will intentionally destroy to push an agenda.

The term “white Privilege” is a purely racist term to gin up racial hate.

When Trump gave a speech about Charlottesville, Virginia, he said there were good people on both sides of the issue. The issue was clearly whether statues should stay up or go down, yet the media fraudulently, to this day, says that Trump is sympathetic to Nazis to gin up racial hate and hate of Trump.

The U.S continues to accept over one million immigrants as citizens each year, yet the media intentionally and fraudulently labels Trump and other Republicans as xenophobes to gin up racial hate and to push Hispanics and others to vote for Democrats.

The media constructs and advances a narrative every day, deciding what to report, how to report and what not to report. Most often the narrative coincides with Democrat talking points seeking to push the Democrat agenda and destroy Trump and Republicans. When the fact-checkers share the same prejudices as the reporters, no one should be naïve enough to believe they would prevent fraudulent reporting.

Photo credit: H.H. Oldman

When I read this article by Washington Post writer Charles Lane, acting as though he is surprised that fraudulent reporting continues with all the fact-checking,  I thought it was a joke. He seems astonished that a German reporter would get away with writing negative things about Americans based on stereotypes.

Below are some excerpts from Lane’s piece. Everything he complains about in the fraudulent German pieces could be said about the U.S media. My guess is that the Der Spiegel writer knew he could get awards by repeating what is written and said in the U.S media, with few ever questioning what he wrote. He knew they would go along.

Obama said Republicans cling to their religion and guns. Hillary said Trump supporters were deplorable and irredeemable. Obama compared tea party members to domestic terrorists. Almost all U.S. journalists supported Obama and Hillary no matter what they said or did, so why wouldn’t journalists from other countries gladly climb aboard with the stereotypes? 

...the gun-toting, death-penalty-seeking, racist American nonetheless remains a stock character of much superficial coverage,

The despicable Dick Durbin went on the Senate floor and compared the military activity at GITMO to Nazis, Pol Pot and Soviet Gulag and the media frequently uses Durbin to target Trump. Is it any surprise that a prize winning journalist would write a fictional story about Gitmo?

He made up a story about an oft-tortured Yemeni released from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, and another about a Joplin, Missouri, woman who travels the country just to witness executions.

We hear frequently how Trump supports the Nazis. Trump and other Republicans are frequently referred to as racists, sexists, homophobes and xenophobes.   

Similarly, while many German journalists report honestly from this country, going to great lengths to travel and meet ordinary people, the gun-toting, death-penalty-seeking, racist American nonetheless remains a stock character of much superficial coverage, particularly in left-leaning outlets such as Hamburg-based Der Spiegel. 

Ugly Americans, and American ugliness, crop up repeatedly in Relotius's articles. He made up a story about an oft-tortured Yemeni released from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, and another about a Joplin, Missouri, woman who travels the country just to witness executions. 

And on the outskirts of rural Fergus Falls, Minnesota, a majority of whose voters backed President Trump in 2016, Relotius purportedly found a large sign - "almost impossible to overlook," he wrote - reading "Mexicans Keep Out." 

The fact that no one in the U.S. press or social media had previously spotted the sign apparently did not prompt so much as a follow-up call to Fergus Falls by Der Spiegel's editors. 

They believed what they found believable. Their credulousness was rooted partly in truth - xenophobia, gun violence and the rest are real problems in the United States, just as anti-foreigner violence was, and is, in Germany. 

But it also reflected bias: Contempt for American culture has a long history among the continental European cognoscenti, the sort of people who read Der Spiegel and write for it. 

Negative caricatures of the United States have taken hold in broader German public opinion, too, especially since a stereotypical Ugly American, Donald Trump, reached the White House - but well before that, too. 

The sub-headline on the piece:

I was naive; thought fraud in reporting was done for

The Kelley scandal, like the 2003 revelation of Jayson Blair's frauds at the New York Times, disproved my belief that Stephen Glass's fakes at the New Republic (in the 1990s, when I was the magazine's editor) might be the last. Surely computer-aided fact-checking would deter fraud, I thought.

However, the unmasking of Der Spiegel's erstwhile ace, Claas Relotius, as a phony on Dec. 20, mere days after he collected his fourth German Reporter Prize, shows yet again that my hope was naive. Reporters keep inventing stories and getting prizes for them. 

What's going on? Fact-checking and other procedural matters are relevant but not fundamental. A great German philosopher got closer to the point when he wrote: "Out of the crooked timber of humanity, no straight thing was ever made." 

Germany today finds itself in a galling situation: It depends, for both military protection and export markets, on a country - the United States - that many Germans, including influential figures in academia, the media, business and politics, regard with ambivalence bordering on disdain. 

Lane’s home paper, the Washington Post, has participated widely in the fraudulent reporting on Russian collusion with Trump and yet Lane acts like he’s shocked about fraudulent reporting.

Almost all of the media intentionally and fraudulently reports that the Obama Justice Department operated independently and no one was above the law. Journalists frequently even use known perjurers Comey, Clapper, Brennan and Holder to bolster their attacks on Trump/

The Washington Post was the main source of hit pieces on booth Roy Moore and Brett Kavanaugh, seeking to destroy them with no actual evidence that the actual accusations were true.

When a police officer in Ferguson, MO shot a black thief trying to grab his gun, a fraudulent narrative of “hands up, Don’t Shoot” roared through the media, destroying the police officer and ginning up racial hate and violence. It intentionally ginned up hate of cops.

White kids from Duke were accused of rape throughout the media without actual evidence. These kids were targeted to help gin up racial hate. It is truly appalling how many people journalists will intentionally destroy to push an agenda.

The term “white Privilege” is a purely racist term to gin up racial hate.

When Trump gave a speech about Charlottesville, Virginia, he said there were good people on both sides of the issue. The issue was clearly whether statues should stay up or go down, yet the media fraudulently, to this day, says that Trump is sympathetic to Nazis to gin up racial hate and hate of Trump.

The U.S continues to accept over one million immigrants as citizens each year, yet the media intentionally and fraudulently labels Trump and other Republicans as xenophobes to gin up racial hate and to push Hispanics and others to vote for Democrats.

The media constructs and advances a narrative every day, deciding what to report, how to report and what not to report. Most often the narrative coincides with Democrat talking points seeking to push the Democrat agenda and destroy Trump and Republicans. When the fact-checkers share the same prejudices as the reporters, no one should be naïve enough to believe they would prevent fraudulent reporting.

Photo credit: H.H. Oldman