Friday, July 27, 2018

What To Do When You Hate the Media

It is notable how Donald Trump and Nicolás Maduro have very similar approaches to the media. All politicians get annoyed by free press--it's the nature of the game. Presidents who accept democratic rule complain and mostly have to endure it. Presidents who do not accept democracy find ways to hurt the offending outlets and go after individual reporters. It's the way these two presidents (and their allies) do so that seems so similar.

Take this Reuters story on El Nacional, which it labels the last independent paper standing (what about the Latin American Herald Tribune, though?). It sounds like Trump taken to the logical next level. Both governments simply label facts as fake.

El Nacional’s independent reporting and headlines documenting power cuts, allegations of electoral fraud and strikes by desperate workers have prompted senior government leaders to regularly single out El Nacional’s coverage for public criticism.

Maduro’s supporters have assailed the paper as biased and accuse it of trying to precipitate his ouster. El Nacional denies this and says it accurately covers the current crisis.
Sound familiar? It is exactly what Donald Trump says on a regular basis. His supporters also routinely use the word "coup" to justify attacking the media. The Venezuelan government is nailing the paper with fines to drive it into bankruptcy and/or justify raiding it. Trump hasn't done that, but it's not a stretch to imagine it.

Indeed, at this point Trump has a majority of Republicans convinced that he is a more reliable source than the media, given his unrelenting attacks. The question is when insults and slights (e.g. refusing to answer questions) cross the line into trying to destroy the outlets themselves, not by sledgehammer but by a death from a thousand cuts.


  © Blogger templates The Professional Template by 2008

Back to TOP