Sneaky little media tricks: Presenting Joe Biden's tax-and-spend speech as a hit with the public

Joe Biden's quasi–State of the Union speech the other night was a miserable affair.

With a void of new ideas, Biden shilled a leftist tax-and-spend scheme writ large, with an ugly side of wokesterism. 

One problem: The voting public despises this crap.

So out trots the media to put the spin on it, bolstering the old foof, and hammer, hammer, hammering home the lie that Biden's speech was somehow popular.

Here was CBS's stupid pet trick.


CBS News poll: Most viewers approve of Biden's speech


Most viewers who tuned in to watch President Biden's speech liked what they heard and came away feeling optimistic about America.

Speech viewers described the president as "Presidential, "Caring," "Inspiring" and "Bold."

And history was made tonight with two women seated behind the president during an address to Congress, and a big majority of those who watched felt proud to see that.

Money quote:

Eighty-five percent of Americans who watched Mr. Biden's first address to a joint session of Congress overwhelmingly approve of his speech. Fifteen percent disapprove. 

What's going on here?  To read this, without thinking too much about it, you'd think Biden's speech was a big hit with the public, with just a few irrelevant fringies opposed

CBS's poll was suggesting that the public was onboard with the Biden tax-and-spend scheme and couldn't get enough of Biden's big stale idea.  Notice, though, that the poll's a sampling of "viewers," not "voters," which is presumably why you'd conduct a poll.

The knock-on pieces from the media hive, which spread the word of Biden's supposed popularity with the public, conveyed that impression even more dishonestly.

Here's one of the lefties at once-solid Forbes: "Biden's First Speech To Congress Draws High Approval Ratings In CNN, CBS Polls."

Here's a sleazily deceptive one from U.K. Metro, which used to be solid once upon a time, too: "Ted Cruz caught sleeping during Joe Biden's Congress address that got 85% approval"

Here's another narrative-maker that leaves the wrong impression, from Axios: "Snap polls: Biden's joint address left vast majority of viewers optimistic."

I would have expected better from all of them.

The sneaky weasel-wordery of the whole thing from CBS and its regurgitation from other outlets created a miasma of impressions that the speech was this big popular thing with the voting public.  It was all over Twitter, repeated by much less rigorous-with-facts leftist "influencers" with big Twitter followings, such as this one noted by Snopes.  And goodness knows how many talk show commentators sloppily repeated it, telephone-style, to claim Biden's plan was popular.

The problem is that the CBS/YouGov poll sampled an audience that was hugely skewed Democrat.  Fifty-four percent of the audience was Democrat, while only 34% of American voters identify as Democrats, as CBS noted lower, way lower, down in the story.

A president's political base is always going to have a positive response to its leader.  If it doesn't, then that becomes actual news.  Biden's leftist base loves him is the story here, although they didn't put it that way.  What exactly was news about this?

Oversampling of Democrats is a growing problem with publicly released polls (not internals, of course, where party operatives privately need to know the actual truth of things).  That has led to continuous reports about Democrats and their bad proposals being far more popular than they are.  These slanted polls amount to propaganda for the Democrats rather than news.  If you want to delve into actual news from such polls, the key demographic to look to is independents, not Democrats.  I noted that in an earlier piece here.  Oh, and as a recent TIPP survey has found, Biden seems to be in big trouble with independents.

Meanwhile, the CBS/YouGov poll  managed to reach only 943 people for interviews, which is quite a low sample for an audience reported to be some 26 million, which is actually where the real story is.

This is the story: Biden's audience was stunningly small compared to that drawn by President Trump, who drew audiences in the neighborhood of 37 million to nearly 48 million, depending on the year. 

According to the still journalistically rigorous Deadline Hollywood:

An estimated 26.9 million people watched the president's address across 16 broadcast and cable networks, according to Nielsen figures released this afternoon.

That's a steep drop from the 47.7 million who watched Donald Trump's first speech to a joint session on February 28, 2017.

Nielsen reported that the bulk of Biden's audience — 18.5 million — were 55 and older. The figures include out of home viewing. Starting at around 9:10 PM ET, the just over one hour speech aired live last night on ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, Telemundo, Univision, PBS, CNBC, CNN, CNNe, Fox Business Network, FOX News Channel, MSNBC, Newsmax, NewsNation and Newsy.

Their headline was news-serious, too:

Joe Biden's Address To Congress Snares 26.9M Viewers; Way Down From Trump As ABC Tops Broadcast & Cable — Update

This, from the guy who got 81 million votes in the last election, well more than President Obama did, all supposedly because he was such a popular guy with voters?

These Nielsen numbers look like the equivalent of a Biden campaign rally.  The public is pretty much missing.  Nobody's tuning in.  People want nothing to do with Joe.  Like the wokesterification of the Oscars, which drove its viewership down, and the falling numbers of professional sports leagues, and even the falling sales of some corporations that have embraced leftwingery, the audiences are refusing to tune in.  That's a story.

We all knew that Biden couldn't attract a crowd during the campaign because he was so unappealing as a candidate, and same for his vice presidential running mate.  Now we know that Biden can't even attract a television audience, even for a speech where he outlines his agenda.  The left keeps trying to sell us the idea that Biden is popular, but the evidence is mounting is that he's not.  He's nothing but a shill, a puppet, a corpse, something being propped up by the corporate press in the interests of defending the ruling class bulwark.  That would explain the skewed polls, the widespread election fraud that got Joe into office in the first place, and now, the skewed non-news reporting suggesting that Biden's tax-and-spend plan is a big hit with the public.

So was this misleading story an error from some CBS intern who doesn't understand how to parse out actual news, or was it something else?

What we do know is that CBS, via Lester Holt, is on record as saying that CBS no longer attempts to report news fairly.  "Fairness is overrated," Holt stated, not realizing that he had just repudiated Journalism 101, cutting public trust in his own news organization even more than it already is.  Watch any of his reports and see the holes in his stories based on that statement.  He's basically just declared that his news organization serves as a propaganda arm for the Democrats since he's not bothering to be fair in his reporting anymore.  That rather suggests to those of us who do pay attention that this skewy narrative-making story about "the 85%" wasn't an oversight from an overeager intern unable to determine where the story was in the data, but probably a decision from the top.  Narrative-making was a Ben Rhodes specialty during the Obama years, and sure enough, his brother David until fairly recently was president of CBS.  The network has gone downhill since his departure.

In all cases, it's false, a proppy narrative, and dishonest to boot.  It's Democrat propaganda, and like Joe, it's getting old.  Call them out.  

Image: Screen shot from a camera aimed at a television set during a live broadcast, filtered with Adobe CameraRaw.

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