"Riffed from the Headlines" is Townhall's daily VIP feature with coverage of 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.
Glossary Over Things – NBC NEWS
The press continues to be vexed by the arrests of Jose Biden Administration official Sam Brinton. After boldly touting the non-binary nature of Brinton (and not looking into qualifications), the press is now struggling with reporting on the figure they had previously supported. We covered how Forbes needed to deflect to Republicans "jump on" the story, showing polls that had GOP opposing trans individuals more than Democrats. Now, NBC tries to elide the reality as well.
In reporting on the arrest, they describe Brinton as "history-making." We have not concluded our deep research as of yet, but if it comes to the conclusion that no other government agency official has previously been arrested with grand larceny for stealing luggage from women at two different airports, then we will agree on the record to the historic significance.
Sam Brinton, who earlier this year became the country’s first openly gender-fluid senior government official, is no longer employed by the U.S. Dept. of Energy after facing two separate allegations of luggage theft. https://t.co/iFaCwSqi4Q— NBC News (@NBCNews) December 14, 2022
Presentation Paradox – CNN
The Senate Republicans are stepping up the cause to have TikTok taken down, and CNN's media maven Oliver Darcy is on the case to – slam Republicans while agreeing with Republicans. In his report, Ollie declared that the Senate GOP members putting up this bill are doing so not because of the pernicious nature of the social platform.
Darcy dutifully goes to TikTok to get a quote and grants anonymity to the PR rep. They go on to say that the only reason Republicans are doing this is to appeal to Fox News viewers. Yet, this slanted take on things is soon contradicted – by Darcy himself.
- "Some leading Democrats have also raised concerns over the years. And none of this is to say that there aren't real issues with TikTok related to data privacy protections and its all-powerful algorithm, where small tweaks could dramatically influence the public discourse on a number of subjects."
Huh, so the effort is valid, but Oliver finds a motivation that he disagrees with, so, therefore, it is bad. He also needs to ignore the small detail of Biden having previously called for his own order to remove TikTok from government hardware, but whatever.
Both Kinds of Standards – WASHINGTON POST
- Proof that Taylor Lorenz does not own any mirrors.
When Bari Weiss arrived to deliver her packet of documents from Elon Musk, she was assured to receive criticism from other journalists – for reporting. It is with oblivious amusement that one of her critics is Taylor Lorenz, who listed off a number of characteristics she finds objectionable about Weiss. That Taylor's list actually was a perfect description of herself makes her all the more reduced to a cartoon character.
Proof that Taylor Lorenz owns no mirrors.— Brad Slager: Polling For Soup (@MartiniShark) December 14, 2022
She comes from wealth, and her content is focused solely on social media, as she is employed by billionaire Jeff Bezos.
As for journalistic ethics, the recidivist CORRECTIONS magnet needs to steer clear of that charge. pic.twitter.com/7EljhOEJtn
Artisanally-Crafted Narratives – MSNBC
That members of the press become so easily provoked by Elon Musk never fails to deliver mirth. Even while they might be aware he is trolling them, they cannot refrain from turning red and leaping for the keyboard. When Musk recently sent a provocative tweet – "My pronouns are Prosecute/Fauci" – Noor Noman could not stop himself from delivering an enraged column.
The heinous fascist messaging is twofold: 1) criminalize lifelong public servants whose political views deviate from your own 2) use your power/platform to target scapegoated minorities (I’m so fucking sick of this uninspired reactionary attempt at a quip with pronouns) pic.twitter.com/i3CQTbSdpk— Noor Noman | نور نعمان 🏳️🌈🏳️⚧️ (@NatashaNoman) December 11, 2022
The imbalance emotion is displayed in his angrily scorching Musk for being intolerant toward those with views that deviate from his own, all while Noman is angry that Musk holds political views on pronouns that deviate from his own. Then in a column, he went on to describe the real problem; mocking the use of pronouns is threatening.
- "And then we have the matter of making a mockery of trans people. I am so unbelievably sick of people using pronouns in a feeble attempt at being witty. It is lazy. It is uninspired. It is dangerous."
Low Octane Gas Lighting – MSNBC
- Getting mad at the thing that is not happening over the problems it is not causing.
Stephanie Ruhle needs to get the outrage machine humming, but in the absence of real strife, she news to create her own. Speaking with former FBI honcho Frank Figliuzi, we see Ruhle attempting to say that book bans in schools are leading to a spike in hate crimes and violence.
That books are not being banned is one thing, and if she wants to blame books kept from the youngest students as a cause, would that not then mean the spike in violence is taking place in grades K-5th grade?
@SRuhle cannot apply logic to her emotional rant.— Lie-Able Sources (@LieAbleSources) December 14, 2022
1) Limiting books for kids based on age appropriateness is not "banning books" any more than a film Rated-R is a movie ban.
2) To link elementary book restrictions to violence means elementary kids are committing the violence. pic.twitter.com/jDolgUTYGA