"Riffed from the Headlines" is Townhall's daily VIP feature with coverage on the deeply flawed aspects of journalism in the nation. We'll look to bring accountability to the mishaps, malaprops, misdeeds, manipulations, malpractice, and manufactured narratives in mainstream media.
Low Octane Gas Lighting – THE NEW YORK TIMES
- A long list of factors for Terry McAuliffe's struggling somehow does not include the name Terry McAuliffe.
The New York Times takes a deep dive into the Virginia governor's race – well, half of it. The lengthy article is a deep exploration of the McAuliffe campaign and why he is not running away with this election. The polls show his opponent Glenn Youngkin surging and now tied, yet Youngkin is barely mentioned four times, and only tangentially. Meanwhile, there is plenty of ink spilled as to why the former governor is having a hard time with things, yet McAuliffe himself is never really explored; it is all the outside influences causing the problems.
The most confounding explanation comes from a major donor, John Morgan, who has a number of law offices – in Florida.
- "'The party is single-handedly torpedoing Terry McAuliffe,' Mr. Morgan said. 'And I think that if Terry loses, Democrats just need to grab a hold of themselves, because the midterms are going to be a blood bath.'"
Understand, this is said after visits from numerous huge Democrat names, including Barack Obama and Kamala Harris, and one impending from the president himself, but sure – the party is working against him. Maybe the funniest line in all of this also explains the desperation seen in the campaign, as they explained their displayed optimism: "They see hopeful signs in the fact that Mr. McAuliffe's support remains higher than Mr. Biden's approval rating."
Terry McAuliffe has been friends with President Biden for four decades. But McAuliffe has put a delicate distance between them as he fights a tight race for a new term as Virginia’s Democratic governor. https://t.co/QCTJDMr36I— The New York Times (@nytimes) October 26, 2021
Artisanal-Crafted Narratives – HILL REPORTER
This upstart outlet started by the infamous Krassenstein Brothers and connected with the leftist source MeidasTouch has come up with an embarrassing exposé they really thought would make an impact politically. Instead, it landed like a helium balloon.
The anonymously sourced scoop has a blurry and pixelated picture of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis seemingly at a party from decades back, surrounded by females and one of them – GASP – might be clutching a beer! We are supposed to care that this event took place. The photograph and the article have nothing that constitutes criminal behavior, nor scandalous activities, nor reason for anything to be punished over. Nor even proof.
I bet the staff ordered a double round of chai lattes and kale smoothies from Panera to toast when their "EXCLUSIVE anonymous/believed/purported/appears to be/it is not clear/controversial proximity" story went to press.
If we have learned anything, all this does is prove that DeSantis is Supreme Court material.
Prose & Contradiction – THE WASHINGTON POST
Speaking of Brett Kavanaugh, recall how his confirmation process taught us that every woman had to be believed, respected, honored, and protected from public humiliation no matter the circumstance? Yea, that all gets pitched over the transom easily when the Democrats are affected. In the Washington Post, they covered the Loudoun County school scandal of a student assaulting another in a bathroom.
After the press was dragged into covering the story that is reflecting poorly on the school board support by Terry McAuliffe, writer Justin Jouvenal thought that it was perfectly fine to detail the sex life of the victim of the assault, who is a minor. That Jouvenal is described as being WaPo's "Justice Reporter" makes this disturbing move all the more repugnant.
There was only one reason for the @WashingtonPost to toss out prior #MeToo commands about sexual assault and instead turn to victim-shaming of a minor -- it is to protect the narrative in Virginia at all costs.https://t.co/oD40JrUvuX— Brad Slager - Gourd Of Thunder (@MartiniShark) October 26, 2021
Anti-Social Media – Novara Media
- If only someone had warned about this result.
For some time, it has been posited that the desire of social media platforms would come around and begin affecting leftist outlets. Well, that censoring is possibly starting to bloom, as one such news source in Britain is experiencing the arbitrary enforcement right now.
A statement from Novara Media on our YouTube channel’s deletion. pic.twitter.com/LXRUaIQN1X— Novara Media (@novaramedia) October 26, 2021
Both Kinds of Standards – POLITICO
- Implied vulgarity is possibly worse when it concerns Biden.
It has been one amusing offshoot of the "Let's Go Brandon" movement that liberals, Democrats, and the press are having a hard time coming to terms with this particular brand of mockery. As the phrase is becoming more entrenched, some reporters are struggling with the reality and getting growingly perturbed.
Olivia Beavers of Politico is noting the number of times members of Congress are using the phrase, with a tone of condemnation.
Spotted at House votes: GOP Rep. Jeff Duncan of SC wearing a mask with a phrase that Republicans are using in place of F*** Joe Biden. pic.twitter.com/0rTSz6LwNV— Olivia Beavers (@Olivia_Beavers) October 26, 2021
This, of course, forces the issue of prior use of vulgarity seen on the Hill directed at a president that left the press unbothered when it arrived.
After your numerous ''Brandon'' tweets, I'm just curious how upset you were when Rashida Tlaib was selling her vulgar swag regarding the prior president? https://t.co/Fq2FWLkC4w pic.twitter.com/On5uqIPeJe— Brad Slager - Gourd Of Thunder (@MartiniShark) October 26, 2021
Reporting on the Mirror – LOS ANGELES TIMES
The future of newspapers is about as bright as your average appliance LED warning light, so it is not with too much surprise that we see the Los Angeles Times placing their focus on things not journalism-related.
In a lengthy interview at Nieman Lab, they spoke to one of the members of the newly expanded audience team at the paper, and she detailed some of the efforts as well as the outreach planned by the team.
- "I really want to build a team — especially the meme team — that has people who don’t necessarily come from journalism backgrounds or don’t necessarily think the old tenets of journalism are as hallowed and important."
Nothing to worry about, folks, this will be fine.
If you want to know more about the meme team and the @latimes audience team expansion, read this Q&A @SarahScire put together for @NiemanLab— Samantha Melbourneweaver (@SamanthaMVB) October 25, 2021
In it, I explain what I actually mean by "get weird"
I also explain my last name. Spoiler: It's not Austrailian https://t.co/4ebvxvx6Qa